Humanities Light Night - Oxford Research Unwrapped!

As part of the national Being Human Festival, and Oxford’s Christmas Light Festival, Humanities Light Night - Oxford Research Unwrapped! was a spectacular explosion of colour, sound and activity for all, including a huge video projection onto the 3-storey Radcliffe humanities building, premiering SOURCE:CODE which featured the work of Oxford Humanities Professors Jacob Dahl, Richard Parkinson and Armand D'Angour, and co-created by Oxford Humanities researchers and The Projection Studio, world-class projection and sound-artists.

Part of the Humanities Cultural Programme, one of the founding stones for the
future  Stephen A. Schwarzman Centre for the Humanities.


SOURCE CODE: Projection Video

Please see below for the full projection video, SOURCE: CODE featuring the work of Oxford Humanities Professors Jacob Dahl, Richard Parkinson and Armand D'Angour



Please see below a short one minute highlights video from the evening.


Bite-sized Talks

A programme of bite-sized talks took place during the evening, delivered by researchers and students relating to the overall 'Discovery' theme of the evening.


Secrets from Missing Manuscripts

Oxford’s libraries house many beautiful books copied by hand before the arrival of print. What, though, about the many more books from the past which have not survived? How might we study lost manuscripts, and what might the process teach us about the experience of losing things more generally?

Dr Daniel Sawyer, Research Fellow in Medieval English Literature, Merton College, Oxford


Unveiling the Secrets and Mysteries of French Novels (1789-1820)

Dr Fanny Lacote will lift the veil on the secrets and mysteries contained within the unknown French literary production published during a turbulent period in History, from the French Revolution (1789-1804), to the Restoration of the Monarchy (1814-1830). It will uncover some of the editorial and publishing strategies used in a volatile political landscape to appeal to an increasing readership eager for English Gothic stories. (Contains references of a violent nature)

Dr Fanny Lacote, FWA post-doctoral research fellow in French


 The Million-Dollar Maths Equations

Discover the Navier-Stokes Equations, which not only model the movement of every fluid on Earth, they also have a $1-million prize for a correct solution. Learn where they come from, how they work, and what you have to do to get your hands on the money! (Nudity warning!)

Dr Tom Crawford, Lecturer in Mathematics, St Edmund Hall, and creator of the award-winning ’Tom Rocks Maths’


Cuneiform Discoveries from Ancient Babylon


In ancient Iraq, scribes used cuneiform (wedge-shaped) script to write hundreds of thousands of texts in the Sumerian and Akkadian languages on clay tablets. Akkadian, a language related to Arabic and Hebrew, was still written in Babylonia after the conquest of Alexander the Great. Newly published tablets show scholars in Babylon trying to boost the temple's dwindling power under imperial rule.

Dr Frances Reynolds, Shillito Fellow in Assyriology, Faculty of Oriental Studies and St Benet's Hall


Discovering Music

Many people love classical music heard on the radio or in concert. But they know less about the manuscripts that performers use, and that show us how the composer created their music. Come and hear about the British Library web resource Discovering Music for an insight into this fascinating creative process.

Dr Jo Bullivant, Departmental Lecturer, Faculty of Music and St Catherine’s College


The World in a Box: Cabinets of Curiosity

Professor Das tells the story of the age when Britain first learnt how to collect, and of how that obsession with discovering secrets and collecting curiosities transformed the way we see the world and our place within it. It begins, as good stories often do, with the opening of a box – a Cabinet of Curiosities.

Professor Nandini Das, Early Modern English Literature and Culture


Discovering Daily Life in Ancient Southern Babylonia

In this talk Professor Jacob Dahl will narrate a day in the life of an ordinary Babylonian person, not a king or a scribe, but a labourer working the fields of southern Babylonia. Professor Dahl will also discuss how to discover the lives of the less fortunate members of society. It will feature glimpses of how the other half of Babylonia lived.

Professor Jacob Dahl, Professor of Assyriology, Faculty of Oriental Studies, Oxford