Show Calendar


Sussex Festival of Ideas

Join us for a two-day celebration of the transformative power of the arts and humanities, co-created by students and staff in Media, Arts and Humanities at University of Sussex

The Sussex Festival of Ideas is a dynamic and engaging programme of talks, events and activities, from the School of Media, Arts and Humanities. It aims to harness the transformative power of the arts and humanities to fashion new ways of thinking about the past, present and future.

The Festival’s 2022 edition includes a two-day programme of talks, events, workshops, conversations, screenings and performances at Attenborough Centre for the Creative Arts on Tuesday 29 and Wednesday 30 March. The festival events explore a wide-range of topics: from black identities and the countryside to irreverent responses to inequality and exploitation within the cultural industries, the visual cultures of Instagram to cultural mediations of climate change, media coverage of Gypsy, Roma and Traveller communities to the new visibility of menopausal life and politics.

The programme includes a screening of Lizzie Thynne’s new documentary about and the work of film pioneer Jill Craigie and a closing keynote presentation by Gary Younge on statues, cultural memory and empire.

With the exception of Gary Younge’s talk, all events are free with no booking required. Seats will be allocated on a first come, first served basis and audiences are free to come to part or all of a day's programme.

Tickets for Gary Younge's talk Not Set in Stone: Why we need more honesty and fewer statues can be booked here.

For more information about the programme please visit the Festival of Ideas website:

Programme summary:

Tuesday 29 March

11.00-11.15 Welcome (Kate O’Riordan)

11.15-12:00: Ukraine: A Media, Arts and Humanities Conversation (Margaretta Jolly)

What is the place of culture in war, invasion and resistance? What ways can cultural actions and analysis support peace-making in desperate times? A panel of staff and students will reflect on the situation in Ukraine in contexts of wider crises.

12.15-13.00: Images Among Us: Research Inside ‘the Gram’ (Manuela Salazar and Ben Burbridge)

How can researchers make sense of a sprawling online image culture? What does Instagram mean for established methods of visual culture analysis? What possibilities and challenges does it afford?

13.00-15.00 Hope and Fear: Cultures of Climate Change (Liberal Arts)

Programme of short talks and conversations exploring perspectives on climate change, from indigenous knowledges to western techno-solutions, curated by students and staff on the Liberal Arts BA.

15.15-16.00: The New Menopause (Ali Ramsey)

Panel exploring the new visibility of menopausal life and politics, in mainstream, social, and countercultural media. This includes a short film screening.

16.30-18.30: Independent Miss Craigie Film Screening and Q+A (Lizzie Thynne, James Longcake)

Jill Craigie (1911–99) was one of the first women to direct documentaries in the UK. Director Lizzie Thynne, with film music composer James Longcake, will present.

18.30-20.00: Drinks in ACCA Cafe bar (with music)

Wednesday 30 March

12.00-12.45 The White Pube (Daniel Lee and Lottie Gomez)

The irreverent cultural critics talk about art writing, feelings, all that's wrong with the creative industry and how we can start to make it better.

13.00-13.45 "We need to talk about" Gypsy, Roma and Traveller communities in the media (Monika Metykova)

Expert panel discuss the media coverage of Gypsy, Roma and Traveller communities and ways in which the media representations of these diverse communities can be improved

14.00-15.30 Black at Sussex: Activism, Curating, Archiving (Martin Evans)

Well-known Sussex alumni discuss black perspectives on activism, access to the countryside, curation and archiving.

16.00-17.30 Gary Younge – Not Set in Stone: Why we need more honesty and fewer statues (keynote)

How and in what ways should we commemorate, and are we missing the point in seeking to erect new statues?

NB: tickets for the Gary Young talk need to be reserved in advance. They can be booked here.

17.30-19.00 Drinks in ACCA bar (with music)

Dates & Times

Tuesday 29 March, 2022 11:00am
– Wednesday 30 March, 2022 5:30pm


  • All events free of charge
No need to book, just drop in. Tickets for Gary Younge's talk are free but need to be reserved in advance
Discussion & Debate
Sussex Festival of Ideas 2022
Tuesday 29 March  – Wednesday 30 March
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