Bristol Skeptics in the Pub is a monthly meeting and talk hosted by the Bristol Skeptics Society for those interested in science, history, psychology, philosophy, investigative journalism, and how to examine extraordinary claims of all types.
 
Bristol Skeptics in the Pub meet every fourth Wednesday of the month at Smoke and Mirrors. Admission is free with a collection during the interval (suggested donation £3-5).
 
Previous speakers include Simon Singh, David Colquhon, David Nutt, Susan Blackmore, and many more.

Godwin's Law, Holocaust Denial, and Historical Evidence

Vicky Stiles

When?
Wednesday, May 27 2015 at 7:00PM

Download iCalendar file
(e.g. import to Outlook or Google Calendar)

Where?

8 Denmark Street, Bristol, BS1 5DQ

Who?
Vicky Stiles

What's the talk about?

The Third Reich was a large, complex, modern state with a thriving mass media, diverse population, and fruitful trade and cultural links with the rest of the world. The ideology behind National Socialism drew upon well-established strands of nationalist and racialist thinking as well as centuries-old anti-Semitism, and the Nazi Party and its government used cutting-edge technology and techniques to give these ideas the broadest possible audience and appeal.
 
All too often, this baffling web of networks, policies and overlapping interest groups, which changed constantly over the twelve years the Third Reich lasted, gets reduced to the ideas and actions of just one man. From the top of the ivory tower, to the very bottom of the bottom half of the internet, this talk will explore what Adolf Hitler means to all of us, and how our obsession with him is sucking the meaning out one of our most potent historical symbols: the Holocaust.
 
DOORS: 19:00
START: 19:30
Admission is FREE and there will be a collection during the interval (suggested donation £3-5).

 
 
Victoria Stiles recently completed a PhD in History at the University of Nottingham and is a co-organiser of the Greater Manchester Skeptics Society. Her research encompasses stereotype formation, the manipulation of evidence and attitudes towards imperialism in Nazi Germany, as well as Anglo-German relations. She occasionally blogs about her sources and what it means to "do" history at tattyjackets.blogspot.com.

Can God Cure Alcoholism?

Jon Stewart

When?
Wednesday, June 24 2015 at 7:00PM

Download iCalendar file
(e.g. import to Outlook or Google Calendar)

Where?

Who?
Jon Stewart

What's the talk about?

Alcoholics Anonymous has become a widely accepted and media approved treatment for problem drinkers. Yet while AA’s social worth is rarely challenged its efficacy rate, which some critics estimate at around 5%-10%, appears comparable to that of spontaneous remission. Can a non-existent "Higher Power" really offer meaningful solutions to the debilitating and frequently fatal condition of alcoholism? If so, what happens to all those alcoholic atheists and skeptics? How did AA become the go-to treatment modality for one of the great social health scourges of our age? It’s the twenty first century, is this really the best we can do?  
 
DOORS: 19:00
START: 19:30
Admission is FREE and there will be a collection during the interval (suggested donation £3-5).

 
Jon Stewart was co-founder, guitarist and co-songwriter for platinum-selling Britpop band Sleeper, with whom he enjoyed three UK Top 10 albums and eight UK Top 40 singles.  Jon currently lectures in cultural history at BIMM Institute on programmes validated and awarded by University of Sussex.  He is also a PhD researcher at University of Southampton.  Author of a long-running column in Guitarist magazine, Jon has published a wide range of research in peer reviewed journals and collections of academic essays.  An active sober member of Alcoholics Anonymous for 14 years, Jon quit the fellowship in early 2014.
 
Jon's blog "Leaving AA, Staying Sober" is at jonsleeper.wordpress.com.
 

 

Ash Pryce

When?
Wednesday, July 22 2015 at 7:00PM

Download iCalendar file
(e.g. import to Outlook or Google Calendar)

Where?

8 Denmark Street, Bristol, BS1 5DQ

Who?
Ash Pryce

What's the talk about?

Hydesville. New York. 1848. The young Fox sisters begin communicating with the spirit of a murdered beggar and spiritualism is born. This interactive look at a history of talking to the dead will feature an array of magical treats including levitating tables, ectoplasm manifestation and spirit communication. Part magic show, part comedy, part rational inquiry this fun show has regularly packed venues at the Edinburgh fringe.
 
Ouija Boards
Spirit Slates
Spirit Communication
Stopped Pulses
Spewing ectoplasm
And more...
 
DOORS: 19:00
START: 19:30
Admission is FREE and there will be a collection during the interval (suggested donation £3-5).

 
"Ash Pryce is a naturally funny guy and won't allow his audience to be bored" "Very entertaining" - edfringereview
 
"Go see" - Edinburgh Skeptics
 
Ash Pryce is a performer and director based in Scotland.  He has written and staged several skeptically themed shows looking at myths & legends, ghosts, psychics and mediumship as well as producing full plays ranging from Faustus to more contemporary original shows in Edinburgh.  He is the founder of Edinburgh Skeptics, the newly started History in the Pub Edinburgh, and runs what is believed to be the worlds first skeptical ghost tour every Fringe.  He lives just outside of Edinburgh with his three Degus, one of which holds a grudge against him.
 
Please Note: This is a skeptically themed show and not intended as an actual demonstration of mediumship or psychic abilities