Discovery Talks: A matter of life and breath

Is breathing at the centre of what it means to be alive? Is it fundamental to being human or being conscious? If robots could ‘breathe’, would that make them human? Can the way that we breathe improve our mental health and even our ability to fight disease? In this panel event, our postgraduate researchers will reflect on their work and what it can tell us about the human act of breathing.

The simple act of breathing allows us to thrive as humans and social beings. It helps us communicate with each other and express ourselves – to speak, laugh and sing. How we breathe can reflect our state of mind as well as our physical wellbeing. Breathing itself can signify transformational change – whether we ‘hold our breath’ following shocking news or ‘breathe in’ before undertaking a significant act.

The event promises to breathe fresh air into your perspective on this fundamental human act – from the lived experience of breathlessness to the latest research on artificial intelligence; from what feminist comics can tell us about the gendered experience of breath to the potential power of meditation and breathing practices to assist with physical and mental recovery from illnesses such cancer.

Chaired by Professor Havi Carel, the panel will include student researchers: 

  • Tina Williams, English
  • Merihan Alhafnawi, Robotics and Autonomous Systems 
  • Surangama Datta, English 
  • Carissa Wong, Cellular and Molecular Medicine

This event is hosted by the Elizabeth Blackwell Institute and the Bristol Doctoral College.

Event Details

Online Event

Date: 28/11/2020
Time: 3:00 pm - 4:00 pm
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Please note: Due to COVID-19, events may be subject to last-minute changes