Did the Victorians Ruin the World?

Presented by Helen Arney. With Helen Arney & Kat Arney

Did the Victorians ruin the world? Join these science sisters to find out, and vote on whether you would change it back!

Comedian Helen Arney (Festival Of The Spoken Nerd, Coast) and science writer and broadcaster Kat Arney (How To Code A Human, Herding Hemingway’s Cats) put aside sibling rivalry to dissect the dark underbelly of this golden era, in this show inspired by their BBC Radio 4 series.

What would life be like now if the Victorians had done things differently? If the internal combustion engine hadn’t taken off during Victoria’s reign, would that same ingenuity have powered us all towards driving clean, green electric cars by now? The 19th century’s enthusiasm for big, bushy, brawny beards is returning in the current fad for facial hair hipsters, but what does it mean for equality, society and the “follicularly-challenged” today?

With special guests from the University of East Anglia, they tackle two testy topics that you will never be able to look at in the same way again. Evolutionary biologist David Richardson is on hand to assess whether the work of naturalist Charles Darwin accidentally ruined the world, while historian Emma Griffin takes the hot seat to work out whether the Victorians ruined beards forevermore.

Prepare for history to meet hilarity: sharp wits, true facts and tiny top hats in an event that respectfully begs to differ.

NB: voting restricted to male landowning gentry registered before 1819.

Image: Kitty Walker

Wednesday 24 October
6.30pm–7.45pm
£12 / £10 concs.
Ages 12+