Annual Lectures

Each year we hold four named lectures in honour of key figures in Wolfson's past and present: the Sarfraz Pakistan Lecture, the Ronald Syme Lecture, the Wolfson Haldane Lecture, and the Isaiah Berlin Lecture. We hold other lecture series throughout the year. To find out more about when our next annual lecture is happening, please see our Calendar of Events.

 

The President's seminars

The College President hosts regular seminars for Wolfson researchers active at all levels and in all fields, providing an opportunity for students and fellows to discuss emerging research findings and exchange ideas.

The Ronald Syme Lecture

The Syme Lecture was established in memory of the eminent Roman historian, Sir Ronald Syme, OM, a Fellow of the College from 1970 until 1989, and widely regarded as the twentieth century's greatest historian of ancient Rome. Held in Michaelmas term, past speakers include Professor Dame Averil Cameron, Professor Susan Treggiari, Professor W. V. Harris, Professor Denis Feeney, Professor Andrew Wallace-Hadrill and Professor Mary Beard.

The Wolfson Haldane Lecture

The Haldane Lecture is given by a speaker of international standing in the field of science each Hilary Term. It is named after J. S. and J. B. S. Haldane, who carried out a number of pioneering experiments in the house that formerly stood on the College site. Past speakers include Sir Martin Evans, Professor V. S. Ramachandran and Sir Iain Chalmers.

The Isaiah Berlin Lecture

Launched in 1990 to celebrate the 80th birthday of the College's Founding President, Sir Isaiah Berlin, the Berlin Lecture is in his own field of study, the history of ideas. Each Trinity Term, we welcome speakers of the stature of Professor Amartya Sen, Professor Roy Foster, Professor Timothy Garton Ash, Michael Ignatieff and Baroness Helena Kennedy. The Berlin Lecture is made possible thanks to an endowment gift from the Rothschild Foundation. 

The Sarfraz Pakistan Lecture

The Sarfraz Lecture, named in honour of the business-man Lord Aamer Sarfraz of Kensington, focuses on the history and culture of Pakistan. It brings together scholars, journalists and cultural commentators and provides an ideal opportunity for the College community to engage with South Asian culture. Past speakers include Mehmood Khan Achakzai, Christophe Jaffrelot, and William Dalrymple.

The Annual Aris Lecture

The Annual Aris Lectures were created in 2015 to celebrate Michael and Anthony Aris and their contributions to Tibetan and Himalayan Studies. The lectures take place in Michaelmas term and are organised by the Tibetan and Himalayan Studies Centre.

Trinity Term Annual Lecture Series

An annual Lecture Series takes place in Trinity Term with invited speakers from around the world. Past subjects have included 'War and Civilization'; 'Lives and Works';  'The Work of Music'; 'Climate Connections'. Learn more.