The Sidney Greats seminar series is designed to give the college community of students, staff and Fellows an opportunity to learn more about classic texts and foundational ideas. Founded by Fellows in English Clive Wilmer and Dr Edward Wilson-Lee, Sidney Greats has quickly grown into one of the most popular events in the academic life of the College.
The series invites speakers from within and beyond the College to explore important works or ideas in an approachable format and interdisciplinary environment. These have ranged widely across the arts and sciences, from human rights law to Shakespeare, Newton to The Qur'an. As Clive Wilmer explains, 'The series aims to give breadth to the education our College offers by familiarising students and others with texts, ideas and artefacts that are widely judged to be "great".'
With generous support from the College's Annual Fund, the debate continues after the lecture over dinner in Hall, affirming the idea of the College as intellectual community.
You can listen to many of the lectures by following the links from the term titles to the University Video & Audio website.
- Prof. Dame Ann Dowling (Sidney Sussex) - Silent aircraft
- Dr. Clare Chambers (Philosophy) - Feminist Political Philosophy
- Prof. Janet Todd (Newham) - Jane Austen's "Emma"
- Prof. Dame Sandra Dawson (Sidney Sussex) - Leadership
- Prof. Gary Gerstle (Sidney Sussex) - Frankin Delano Roosevelt
- Richard Humphreys - J.M.W. Turner
- Dr. Paulina Sliwa (Sidney Sussex) - Aristotle's "Nichomachean Ethics"
- Dr. Douglas Hedley (Divinity) - Plato's "Timaeus"
- Lachlann Mackinnon - WH Auden
- Prof. Raymond Geuss (Philosophy) - Rabelais
- Dr. Helen Castor (Sidney Sussex) - Joan of Arc
- Dr. Kirsten Dickers (Sidney Sussex) - Marie Curie
- Prof. Stefan Collini (English) - The University
- Prof. Christopher Page (Sidney Sussex) - Beowulf
- Prof. John Forrester (HPS) - Freud's Interpretation of Dreams
- Dr. David Skinner (Sidney Sussex) - John Taverner
- Dr David Beckingham (Sidney Sussex) - Charles Dickens' Bleak House
- Dr Rowan Williams (Magdalene College) - Dostoevsky
- Prof. Andrew Balmford (Zoology) - Environmentalism
- Dr Mette Eilstrup Sangiovanni (Sidney Sussex) - The Post-American World
- Prof. Rosamond McKitterick (Sidney Sussex) - Charlemagne
- Prof. Richard Staley (Gonville and Caius College) - Einstein
- Dr Emma Gilby (Sidney Sussex) - Descartes
- Prof. Sir Geoffrey Lloyd (Needham Research Institute) - Chinese Science
- Dr Jillaine Seymour (Sidney Sussex) - Human Rights
- Dr Joe Moshenska (Trinity College) - Lucretius' poem "De Rerum Natura"
- Dr Martin Ruehl (Trinity Hall) - Nietzsche's Beyond Good and Evil
- Prof. Robin Kirkpatrick (Robinson College) - Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream
- Dr Philip Wood (Sidney Sussex) - The Qur'an
- Mr Max Beber (Sidney Sussex) - Keynesian Economics
- Prof. Paul Binski (Gonville and Caius College) - Giotto
- Professor Adrian Poole (Trinity College) - Homer's The Iliad and The Odyssey.
- Edward Wilson-Lee (Sidney Sussex) - The Bible
- Clive Wilmer (Sidney Sussex) - Dante's Divine Comedy
- Dr Patricia Fara (Clare College) - Newton's Principia Mathematica
- Dr Tim Lewens (Clare College) - Darwin's On the Origin of Species.