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The next meeting of Talking Allowed in Leeds is on Monday 10th of December at 1.45pm. The venue is Veritas, Great George Street, Leeds.

At this time of year we can’t book the small room at the back of the pub and have to find space in the main bar. So instead of our usual discussion we review the past year and make our plans for future meetings.

If you have a topic you would like to introduce, come and share your idea with us. Or just come and be sociable at this last meeting of the year.

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The next meeting of Talking Allowed in Leeds is on Monday, November 12th at 1.45pm in Veritas Bar.

In her novel “North and South”, Elizabeth Gaskell contrasted the industrial revolution and poverty in the north of England with the tranquillity and prosperity of the rural south. An economic and cultural divide still exists between north and south but what has changed and what remains the same? What is your experience of the difference? How much is reality and how much perception?

We will also review this year’s TAiL discussions and make plans for next year.

The topic for discussion is “Work Experience”. The leader of the TUC believes that a four-day working week could come about in “this century”. Is this possible or even desirable?

In 1930 Keynes predicted a 15 hour week but this has proved elusive. Is a shorter working week economically feasible? What does it mean for those in part-time work or on zero hours contracts? And what if it is work that provides structure and meaning to people’s lives?

Tell us about your experience of employment. (Or unemployment.)

The next meeting of Talking Allowed in Leeds is on Monday, September 10th at 1.45pm in Veritas Ale and Wine Bar.

Last month we discussed the argument put forward by W.K. Clifford that our beliefs must be backed up by reason and evidence. It is not enough, he says, to rely on inner certainty, dogma or received wisdom.

For September’s meeting we will continue the discussion by looking at the other parts of Clifford’s text: how do we judge the views of experts and authorities, and is it acceptable to use inference to back up our beliefs.

Gifford summarises his views as follows:-

  • We may believe what goes beyond our experience, only when it is inferred from that experience by the assumption that what we do not know is like what we know.
  • We may believe the statement of another person, when there is reasonable ground for supposing that he knows the matter of which he speaks, and that he is speaking the truth so far as he knows it.
  • It is wrong in all cases to believe on insufficient evidence; and where it is presumption to doubt and to investigate, there it is worse than presumption to believe.

The full text of “The Ethics of Belief” can be found here:

https://en.wikisource.org/wiki/The_Ethics_of_Belief

The next meeting of Talking Allowed in Leeds is on Monday, July 9th at 1.45pm in Veritas Ale and Wine Bar.

Our subject is “Bob Dylan: Nobel Laureate.”  Does the award of the Nobel prize for literature tell us something about his lyrics, or should we adjust our idea of what constitutes literature?

The next meeting of Talking Allowed in Leeds is on Monday, June 11th at 1.45pm in Veritas Ale and Wine Bar.

The topic under discussion is “1968 and all that”.

1968 saw student protests, demonstrations against the Vietnam war, strikes and factory occupations, barricades in Paris, the Prague Spring and its suppression, and the assassination of Martin Luther King. These events had a formative effect on many of the generation who lived through them. But what about later generations? On the fiftieth anniversary what relevance has the “spirit of 1968”.

For local interest, there is a discussion of activism in Leeds in 1968 at Swarthmore on the 31st of May. Details here.