Sunday, 15 December 2013

Happy Christmas

Thanks to all who attended our meetings this term. Looking forward to seeing many of you when we resume, in Hilary 2014. Meanwhile, do get in touch with reading recommendations.

Happy vacation to all!

Wednesday, 4 December 2013

Next meeting: 11th December 2013, 5pm

Dear all,

Our third meeting will take place on Wednesday 11th December, at 5pm.

The reading, very kindly chosen by Alex, is a 1933 essay by Hayek: 'The Trend of Economic Thinking' (which you can access by clicking on the link)

Looking forward to seeing many of you on the 11th! 

Wednesday, 13 November 2013

Next meeting: 20 November 2013

Our next meeting will take place on Wednesday 20 November, usual time and place: 5pm in the Committee Room, Wolfson.

The readings for this meeting are two very short texts by Orwell and an only slightly longer one by Trotsky (all available online - please follow the links below):

Orwell, 'The Frontiers of Art and Propaganda' (1941)
---, 'Literature and Totalitarianism' (1941)
Trotsky, 'The Social Roots and the Social Function of Literature' (1923)

As ever, please do get in touch if you have any questions/suggestions:

Thursday, 3 October 2013

First meeting for 2013/14: Wednesday 23rd October, 5pm

Dear all,

We are delighted to announce that our first reading group meeting for this academic year (2013/14) will take place at Wolfson (Committee Room), at 17:00 on 23 October.

For our first meeting, we will be reading Keynes and Forster.

Pdfs of texts are available here:

J. M. Keynes, 'Am I a Liberal?' (1925), in The Collected Writings vol. 9: Essays in Persuasion

E. M. Forster, 'What I Believe' (1938), from Two Cheers for Democracy

Welcome back!

We are delighted to announce that, following the summer break, the Wolfson History of Ideas reading group will resume its activities this month. 

Our first meeting for the academic year 2013/14 will take place on Wednesday 23rd October, at 5pm at Wolfson (Committee room). 

The reading group is open to all students, staff, and members of the common room, irrespective of their backgrounds, disciplines, and career level. We meet monthly to discuss short, rich texts; the theme for this year is 'Interwar Ideas'. 

For more information about dates of meeting and for pdfs of the readings, please keep checking our blog.

Looking forward to seeing many of you in October,
Kei, Nick, Christos

*Please contact Christos ( with any queries.

Monday, 22 April 2013

Meeting Wednesday 8 May 2013, 5pm

The reading for our next meeting on Wednesday 8 May 2013 is an excerpt (pp. 5-8 and 26-33) from Hannah Arendt's 'Totalitarian Imperialism: Reflections on the Hungarian Revolution', very kindly chosen by Kei. The entire article is available here.

As ever, please do get in touch if you have any questions or if you are unable to access the reading (

Thursday, 28 March 2013

Next meeting: 8 May 2013

For our next meeting on May 8th, we will read a piece by Hannah Arendt. More details to follow.

In the meantime, happy vacation to all!

Friday, 15 February 2013

Next Meeting: Wednesday 13 March 2013, 5pm, Wolfson

Our next meeting will take place at 5pm on Wednesday 13th March in Committee Room, Wolfson.

The reading will be an excerpt from Simone Weil's The Need for Roots (pp. 9-19; from 'Order' on p. 9 to the end of 'Honour' on p. 19)

As ever, if you have suggestions for future readings get in touch (

Monday, 14 January 2013

Date change: Next meeting 6 February, 5pm

Please note the date change for our next meeting: Wednesday *6 February* (not 30 January as previously advertised). Same time and place: 5pm, Committee Room, Wolfson

Monday, 7 January 2013

Next meeting: 6 February 2013, 5pm

A happy new year to all!

Our next meeting will take place on Wednesday 6 February at 5pm in Wolfson (room tbc).

We will be discussing chapter 9, 'Aestheticism, Perfectionism, Utopianism', (from vol 1) of Karl Popper's Open Society and its Enemies, which you can access here (pp.160-72). It is a relatively short text but contains various integral ideas that (will hopefully) lend themselves to fruitful discussion.

As ever, do get in touch if you have any questions/suggestions etc.

Looking forward to seeing many of you on the 6th!