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The University of Southampton
The Parkes Institute

Ask the expert

Ask the Expert involves University of Southampton staff and research students, who deliver regular one-hour workshops in local schools on the specific subjects in which they are an expert and about which they are particularly passionate.

Our academics are able to hold taster lectures on campus or can visit your school or college. If you visit us we can tailor a session for you, including information on our courses, our Curriculum Innovation Programme and life at the University.

The Parkes Institute is pleased to offer the following workshops:

What is Apocalyptic?

"If the Apocalypse comes, beep me" - Buffy the Vampire Slayer

Over the centuries, the threat of an impending apocalypse has often been used as a theme within literature and other medium to express social and political change and any accompanying fears. Apocalypses are important because they express social and cultural concerns, but also because they tell us about attitudes to historical events at crucial periods in the development of world history. This session will explore the nature of apocalyptic literature and ideas from the Bible to the Big Screen. Apocalyptic ideas are found everywhere in today's society, and are a way of learning about the concerns of society at the time they are produced. This workshop is aimed at Years 11, 12 and 13.

The rise of Islam

The seventh century CE is a crucial period of both religious and world history due to the rise of Islam. This century saw the leadership of Muhammad, the writing of the Qur'an, and the beginning of the Arab conquests of the Near East. By looking at a variety of primary sources, this session will examine the events surrounding the rise of Islam and the relationships between Jews, Christians and Muslims at this time. This workshop is aimed at Years 11, 12 and 13.

Terrorism or Resistance? The Irgun Zvai Leumi, Lehi and Haganah

The popular cliché that ‘one man's terrorist is another's freedom fighter' continues to be of relevance in the modern world. But, is there a way in which such debate can be considered as comprising two sides of the same coin? Can the terms ‘terrorism' and ‘resistance' be used interchangeably? Using close textual analysis of 1940s British newspapers, this session will explore the mechanics of the language used to describe the actions of the Irgun Zvai Leumi, Lehi and Haganah in Mandatory Palestine, providing insight into the historical context in which such actions were placed.

Ask the expert

Outreach work was central to the life work of James Parkes, and outreach remains at the forefront of the activities of the Parkes Institute.

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