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Green Templeton Lectures 2014: The Tyranny of the Normal

Is normality - or conformity to certain parameters of behaviour and appearance - a necessary condition of all advanced societies or a tyranny which constrains individual aspiration and social evolution? Do conceptions of normality have any objective basis or are they merely social constructions, inexorably tied to the exercise of political and economic power? These questions have troubled some of the influential minds of the last two centuries but are they still relevant today, as conceptions of normality are challenged by advances in genomics and new technologies of human enhancement?

# Episode Title Description People Date
3 Ordinary People do Extraordinary Things: What Do the Lives of Olympians Tell Us About the Champion in Us All? Peter Keen, Director of Sport at Loughborough University, gives a talk for the 2014 Green Templeton College lecture series Peter Keen 02 Jul 2014
2 "I Don't Like the Way I Look": the Psychological Consequences of Appearance Norms Societal interest in 'looks' has a long history. Until recently, this interest has been considered largely benign: however, norms of appearance have become progressively more extreme and are now unattainable for the vast majority of people. Nicole Rumsey 02 Jul 2014
1 Cinematically Challenged Mainstream Hollywood cinema, the dominant medium of the twentieth century, represented the disabled more fully than most minorities, but what (or who) are these images really about? Adam Mars-Jones 02 Jul 2014