// Latest Posts

Invisible Cities and Inspiration

In the latest edition of The Things That Made Us, we’re talking about Invisible Cities by Italo Calvino. This book was originally published in 1972, it describes a series of conversations between the explorer Marco Polo and the Emperor Kublai Khan. The book is a fascinating examination of what it means to be human as …

Music and Innovation

In the latest of the ‘Things that Made Us’ podcast, we talk about the connections between music and invention. This focuses on Mike Oldfield’s 1973 album, Tubular Bells. You might know the album from its use in the horror film, The Exorcist (1973). This has meant the music has been perceived as haunting but it can be …

Art and rethinking our world – the things that made us

In this podcast we discuss art and how we envision different worlds. We take the subject of Paul Nash’s, We are making a new world (1918). A work that was created to depict the battlefields of the First World War, but which also gives us a chance to see how creative works move us and …

Focused Thinking and Diffuse Thinking: How to Learn

In Liberal Arts, we are occasionally confronted with new subjects, new approaches and terminologies that we might not have worked with before. This is always the challenge for an interdisciplinary programme. However, this is the challenge that we like! We are interested in expanding ideas and learning new approaches. This can be made easier by …

Middlemarch and the Things That Made Us

The fourth episode of The Things That Made Us discusses the novel, Middlemarch. Published across 1871 and 1872 and written by George Elliot (the pen name of Mary Ann Evans), Middlemarch has the capacity to move and engage readers in an unusual way. I think it does this in a way that speaks to the …

Invention and Interdisciplinary Work

Research lies at the heart of what we do within Liberal Arts. It’s the process of discovering, testing, analysing and communicating. It’s what we do with our essays, coursework, exams and presentations. However, research is far important that because it acts as a means of seeing connections between subjects, issues and data. When we research, …

Star Wars and the Things That Made Us

In episode 3 of the Things That Made Us we discuss the 1977 film Star Wars. This might seem like an usual choice but bear with us! Star Wars is a cinematic classic, from the opening scene of a huge spaceship with the glow of a planet’s atmosphere below to the destruction of the Death …

Sustainability and the importance of interdisciplinary studies

What do you think about when you throw something away? You might be incredibly conscientious and think about how you might be able to recycle the empty contained or wrapper. You might think about how where the rubbish will go once it has been collected. You might even ponder the nature of our society that …

Keywords and Thoughts – The Things That Made Us

In the second podcast of The Things That Made Us we look at Raymond Williams’s classic work, Keywords. This is a fantastic introduction to the concepts and terms that will be used in classes for anyone studying at university. If you are unsure of the debates in seminars and lectures then Keywords offers you insight. It’s …

Diverse Thinking – A Liberal Arts approach

Over the last few weeks our Liberal Arts students have been working on maps of the city of Nottingham that explore how people create a sense of place in the city. The work is part of our work on Space, Place and Belonging in the City which is run in Year 1. We use the …