Tanner Lectures


"I see them simply as a search for a better understanding of human behaviour and human values."

Obert Clark Tanner

 

The Tanner Lectures were established by the American scholar, industrialist and philanthropist, Obert Clark Tanner in 1978.  The purpose of the Tanner lectures is to advance and reflect upon the scholarly and scientific learning related to human values.
 
In creating the lectureships, Professor Tanner said, “I hope these lectures will contribute to the intellectual and moral life of mankind. I see them simply as a search for a better understanding of human behaviour and human values. This understanding may be pursued for its own intrinsic worth, but it may also eventually have practical consequences for the quality of personal and social life".
 
Appointment as a Tanner Lecturer is a recognition of uncommon achievement and outstanding abilities in the domain of human values. The lectureships are international and intercultural and transcend ethnic, national, religious and ideological distinctions.

The Tanner Lectures 2017

'A gendered approach to peace building'

Ambassador Melanne Verveer, Executive Director of the Georgetown Institute for Women, Peace and Security.    

Respondent’s Session with Professor Seyla Benhabib, Professor Willy Brown, Baroness Arminka Helić and Professor Monica McWilliams


Video

Tanner Lecture 2017 video:  Parts 1&2

  


Picture Gallery

For more photos go to the Tanner Lecture 2017 gallery


 

Tanner Lecture Archives

Recordings are available for some of our archived talks and can be found in the University's video & audio collection.
 

2016 Aerial Violence and the Everywhere War

Professor Derek Gregory

Peter Wall Distinguished Professor and Professor of Geography at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver.

Photographs

Lecture Report

 

2014 Science, Secrecy and the Private Self

Professor Peter Galison

Joseph Pellegrino University Professor, Harvard University

 

2013 The Great Crimes: The Quest for Justice among Individuals and Groups

Philippe Sands QC

Barrister and Professor of Law and Director of the Centre on International Courts and Tribunals at UCL

 

2012 The Viennese Interior: Architecture & Inwardness

Professor Joseph Leo Koerner

Harvard University

 

2011 The Psychology and Economics of Authority

Professor Ernst Fehr

Director of the Department of Economics at the University of Zurich

 

2010 Care-full Markets: Miracle or Mirage?

Professor Susan J. Smith, FBA, FRSE, AcSS

 

2009 Art and Religion in the Modern West – Some Perspectives

Professor Sir Christopher Frayling

 

2008 What's Left of Culture and Society?

Professor Lisa Jardine CBE

 

2007 Medicine, Neuroscience, Ethics and Society

Professor Judy Illes / Lord Winston

 

2006 Germany reunited: a lesson in political transformation

Professor Kurt Hans Biedenkopf

President of the State of Saxony from 1990 to 2002

 

2005 Peace after War: Our Experience

Carl Bildt

Former Prime Minster of Sweden

 

2004 The meanings of things

Neil Macgregor

Director, British Museum

 

2003 Beyond the Social Contract: Toward Global Justice

Martha Nussbaum

 

2002 

Seamus Heaney
 

2001 The State and the Shaping of Identity

Antony Appiah

Professor of Afro-American Studies and Philosophy at the University of Harvard


2000  Tanner Symposium

  • Culture and Calendar

Lawrence Sullivan, Mary Miller, Liba Taub, Silke Ackermann

  • Science and the Measurement of Time

Steven Chu, Michael Hastings, Craig Heller, Malcolm Longair,

Joseph Taylor, Joseph Vining

  • The Performance of Time

William Bolcom, Peter Jeffery, Samuel Barrett

  • The Loss of Time

Toni Morrison

 

1999 Happiness

Jonathan Lear

 

1998 The Idol of Stability

Stephen Toulmin

Professor, University of Southern California, (formerly at Oxford University)

 

1997 Why Animals Don’t Have Language

Dorothy Cheney

Primatologist and Professor, University of Pennsylvania

 

1996 I. Jazz: A Historical Perspective, II. Duke Ellington, III. Charles Mingus

Gunther Schuller

Jazz historian, performer, arranger and editor

 

1995 Space-time and Cosmology

Sir Roger Penrose

Professor of Mathematics, Oxford University

 

1993 Problems of Christianization in Rome and the Post-Roman West

Peter Brown

Professor of History, Princeton University

 

1992 The Sources of Normativity

Christine Korsgaard

Professor of Philosophy, Harvard University

 

1991 On Doing Science in the Modern World

Dr David Baltimore

President of Rockefeller University

 

1990 Environmental Challenges of the ippos: our responsibilities towards future generations

Dr Gro Brundtland

Prime Minister of Norway

 

1989   Interpretation and Over-interpretation: World, History, Texts

Umberto Eco

Writer and Professor, University of Bologna

 

1988   Islam in European Thought: The Nineteenth Century and After

Dr Albert Hourani

Oxford

 

1987   The Penalty of Imprisonment

Louis Blom-Cooper

QC, London, formerly Chairman of the Howard League for Penal Reform

 

1986   Technology, Bureaucracy and Healing

Dr Roger Bulger

Professor, University of Texas

 

1985 Architecture: Modernist and Post-modernist

Aldo van Eyck

Architect, Netherlands

 

1984   The Standard of Living

Amartya Sen

Professor of Political Economy, Oxford University

 

1983   Challenges of Neo-Darwinism

Steven Jay Gould

Paleontologist and evolutionary biologist, Professor, Harvard University

 

1982   Haydn and Eighteenth Century Patronage in Austria and Hungary

H. C. Robbins Landon

Professor of Music, Cardiff University

 

1981   A Voluntary Society

Dr Kingman Brewster

President of Yale University, and formerly US Ambassador in London

 

1980   The Arts as a Source of Truth

John A. Passmore

Professor, Australian National University

 

1979   Arms Control and Peace Research

Raymond Aron

Professor, College de France and Ecole Pratique des Hautes Etudes, Paris

 

1978   Morality, Politics and the Press

Dr Conor Cruise O'Brien

Editor of the Observer