Censorship, Surveillance & Mass Infantilization by Paul Whittaker

Once upon a time we could rely on the Tories to lambast any suspicious examples of the nanny-state as quickly as they could identify them, but now, at the behest of the Daily-Mail they have concocted the most definitively nanny-state concept of all time: a system to filter the internet in order to protect the children (along with everyone else) from internet pornography.
In the wake of the Snowden leaks it is surprising how little concern and scrutiny David Cameron & Claire Perry’s attempt to install a massive censorship and surveillance program has attracted. Another piece of the puzzle which has received little comment is that this is not Cameron’s first attempt to tame the unruly internet. As well as the (rather flimsy) blockade on torrent sites there was an abortive attempt back in 2011 after the widespread rioting triggered by the police murder of Mark Duggan. Read more…

Another Aristotle, Perhaps ? by David Seagrave

My name is David Seagrave and I was born in Devon in 1941. I moved to Lancing, Sussex in 1947 and Seaford, further up the coast in 1952. I was sent to Steyning Grammar School  as a boarder and was so desperately homesick that I wanted to die. Steyning is under an hours journey from Seaford and if you could imagine it, dear readers, if a boy from Bathgate moves to North Berwick and is dumped in a boarding school in Bo-Ness and forbidden to visit his family.
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Philosophy and Music by Dan Zambas

Ancient philosophers such as Aristotle and Plato recognised the unity between music and philosophy.

The artistic expression of a piece of music could be described as philosophy using sound. Instrumental Classical music can be a very profound experience and the content of the music can be incredibly descriptive. Instruments playing characters, melodic themes reproduced in a variety of ways during the course of the piece, these are left to the audience’s imagination. This can provide the listener with a wide range of conclusions; from purely enjoying the music, to a deeper understanding of themselves. Read more…

12th Sept 2013: Digital Culture, Mindfulness and Existential Threat by Nadine Andrews

digital culture

Manchester Ragged University invites you to come along to the Castle Hotel for some food and a talk with Nadine

Name of speaker and subject:

Nadine Andrews

Title of talk:

Digital culture, mindfulness and existential threat

Bullet points of what you would like to cover:

•    The technoscience project of modernity: notion of no limits and dominance over nature
•    Human-nature relationship: the Anthropocene age
•    Gadgets – mindfulness and mindlessness and perceptions of permanence
•    (Dis)regulation and (dis)harmony
Read more…

Palm Oil: The Good, The Bad and the Downright Ugly! by Faith Canter

These days most people have heard of palm oil, even if it’s just to know that it’s an ingredient in food and beauty products.  However, most people won’t know that this is only scratching the surface and that palm oil production is one of the largest businesses in the world.  This then becomes a real concern when you hear about what goes into producing the palm oil you eat, use on your body and also as fuel – we use it almost every single day without even realising it. Read more…

A Rubbish Eureka Moment: An Artist’s Environmental Quest by Julia Barton

Hello, my name is Julia Barton and I am a visual artist and member of Ragged University, I am based in Edinburgh and I make installations, prints and recently began performing. The work I make is often inspired by the natural world, the environment I find myself in and I am passionate about reclaiming and reusing as many materials as I can to make works and hence I often enjoy beach combing.
Last October I took an early morning walk on Polbain beach in Ross-Shire expecting to enjoy the sea and to search for odd washed up objects, but when I got close everything was reversed, the high tide line was a massive tangle of manmade materials and I had to literally search for seaweed amongst the rubbish. A Rubbish Eureka moment!
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Overcoming The Joy Sponges

I have been reading the book ‘Share, Retweet and Repeat’ by John Hlinko to help me on my learning trajectory as I take on the maintenance and development of the Ragged website.

As Anthony Ellis (Rad Rooster) – the previous webdeveloper who kindly did a lot of the work – has been absorbed by ensuring food gets on his table, and with the rebuilding of the Streatham business community, the work of maintaining the Ragged website had to move from the intray of this generous benefactor.  To help me on my personal learning journey, he suggested I read the book. Read more…