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Lecture Series 2017-18: Grammars of Wonder

Most great thinkers, starting with Plato and Aristotle, have thought that the best reflection on reality in all its riotous complexity begins in wonder. Wonder has thus been at the foundation of the whole gamut of disciplinary inquiries, whether in the humanities or sciences, across the centuries.

Have we lost a sense of wonder at the reality in which we exist? Has wonder become routinised, sensationalised? Have we become numb to wonder? How does wonder work, or not work, in various fields of enquiry or cultures? What are the challenges to wonder in today’s world? How might a sense of wonder affect the way we live and act in our world?

This year the VHI seeks to explore and revitalise the forgotten grammars of wonder.



All events are held at St Edmund's College (Garden Room) unless otherwise indicated. Events are free, open to the public, and followed by drinks.

Audio or video of the lectures can be found on our Audio/Video page.


Michaelmas 2017

Thursday 10th November | 17:30

Economics and Wonder: The Hidden Theology of Economic Life
Philip Goodchild


 Friday 24th November | 16:00

Poetry and Wonder: Cataphasis, Redemption and a Mucker Fog
Hilary Davies


Lent 2018

Friday 9th February | 16:00

The Annual Von Hügel Lecture
Cardinal Blaise Cupich


Friday 23th February | 16:00

Philosophy and Wonder
William Desmond • Catherine Pickstock


Friday 9th March | 16:00

Creativity and Wonder

Robin Attfield


Easter 2018

Friday 27th April | 16:00

Creativity and Wonder
Robin Attfield


Friday 18th May | 16:00

Love and Wonder

Aldegonde Brenninjmeijer-Werhahn


Friday 25th May | 16:00

The Lattey Lecture
Ian Boxall


Friday 1st June | 16:00

Innocence and Wonder: Lecture-Recital

Steven Isserlis


Friday 8th June | 16:00

Feminism and Wonder

Marguerite La Caze


An interdisciplinary research hub inspired by Catholic thought and culture, focussed on contemporary global realities, and dedicated to encounter, dialogue, and transformation