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“Inequality: the enemy between us?” - Prof Kate Pickett

LIGHT Seminar Series - “Inequality: the enemy between us?” - Prof Kate Pickett (NB 12 Noon)

Date: 12 noon Thursday 10th October 2013
Speaker: Prof Kate Pickett, Dept of Health Sciences, University of York
Venue: Dental Lecture Theatre (6.142), Level 6 Worsley Building, Clarendon Way, Leeds

Prof Kate Pickett trained in biological anthropology at Cambridge, nutritional sciences at Cornell and epidemiology at UC-Berkeley. She is currently Professor of Epidemiology in the Department of Health Sciences, University of York. Kate was an UK NIHR Career Scientist from[masked], is a Fellow of the RSA and a Fellow of the UK Faculty of Public Health. She is co-author, with Richard Wilkinson, of The Spirit Level chosen as one of the Top Ten Books of the Decade by the New Statesman, winner of Publication of the Year by the Political Studies Association and translated into 23 languages. Kate is a co-founder and director of The Equality Trust.

REGISTRATION:
University staff members - please Register here.

If you are external to the University you are most welcome to attend; please email Neil Turner ([masked]) to register your interest.

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  • Ruhannah Y

    It is a pity that anyone left the lecture hall conflating equality entirely with material prosperity, though I can see why they could do so, as many of the graphs did indeed, use material wealth as the only measure of status.

    In fact, the message of the lecturer was deeper : that being positioned low in any hierarchy, creates distress that is in both physiological and emotional terms, painful. In Samurai circles for example, no amount of wealth could remove the still of dishonour, as wealth was not the only factor indicative of status and value.

    The speaker was certainly not advocating more prosperity for an aspirational public! Rather, she was suggesting that in those societies where the social hierarchy is flattened out a bit, and the social goods shared out more equitably, people 's health, mortality rates, and levels of mental distress all improve. Stands to reason, doesn't it.... After all, who does not prefer respect to humiliation?

    1 · October 11, 2013

  • Ruhannah Y

    This lecture was a brilliant example of joined up thinking, which more and more academics are starting to do, but not often, without considerable danger, as the powers that be want knowledge to be fragmented and most especially without any ethical embodiment.
    See the book by professor Denis Rancourt on racism and hierarchy, or you could read his blog on how he has been persecuted and sacked by the university for not following the. Covert orders that we all live under in the so called democracies. Big Pharma in particular, have brainwashed us into taking pills for every malady, thus fattening their profits but research such as by this professor, demonstrates that the effects of inequality, cause a multitude of ills, including a weakened immune system . Thus, the lower we are down the social and political hierarchy, the more we are susceptible to every disease, from the common cold, to cancer.

    October 11, 2013

  • Dan C.

    Is anyone actually in favour of inequality?

    And do we need more equality to make us more considerate drivers? Ummh.... bit paternalistic perhaps - arguing that a more equal society will make us better people (or at least less depressed, narcissistic and anxious).

    Does anyone remember the old left wing critique of formal equality? We're all equally free to dine at the Ritz, even the beggar sleeping on the pavement outside. The emphasis here though was on the real freedom that money brings to do things. It wasnt so much an argument for equality as for prosperity. And, like the idea of economic growth, it appealed to an aspirational public who wanted more money to enjoy the good things in life.

    Who does Picket appeal to I wonder?

    October 10, 2013

    • Dave J.

      I think there are lots of people who are in favour of inequality: most on the ideological right believe that it is natural and good to encourage competition in pursuit of high achievement and limited rewards.So many different kinds of freedom - to do what I would like to do; to do what I can do; to do what I'm allowed to do...

      October 11, 2013

    • Dave J.

      Sorry - I pressed the return key meaning to insert a paragraph and it posted before I was ready. A couple of pointers there, though, Dan...

      October 11, 2013

  • Dave J.

    Excellent - very interesting and entertainingly delivered. I am so pleased to see science and rationality being applied to ethics, ideology and politics instead of leaving those vital things to uninformed personal preference and vested interests!

    October 11, 2013

  • David M.

    Brilliant - need I say more?

    October 10, 2013

  • Tom B.

    Looks like I'm not going to make this after all, I'm afraid (busy editing the interview Kate gave us for Enough (The Movie). Hope it goes well.

    October 10, 2013

  • Owen "OB" B.

    Hi Ruhannah and others, I'll wait outside the lecture theatre 10mins before, this is my number[masked], I'll have a blue rucksack with me, ob

    October 9, 2013

  • Margo H.

    Tom, Owen, as I mentioned, I'm not going to be able to make this. Can you suggest a place to meet Ruhannah and anyone else beforehand? Maybe just outside the lecture theatre. See you soon!

    October 9, 2013

  • vickythomson

    Sorry I didn't realise it was at noon - afraid I can't make it. Sounds fascinating though

    October 9, 2013

  • Ruhannah Y

    Dear Fellow Thinquers, any particular place we are meeting up prior to the lecture? This will be my first meetup with members of this group.

    October 9, 2013

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