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Haunted London: Ghosts of The British Museum and Bloomsbury

 London is an old and haunted City; join us for ghost stories of central London. Noah Angell on ghostly sightings at the British Museum, Roger Luckhurst discusses a cursed object in the Egyptian rooms of the British Museum and Sarah Sparkes presents the hauntings and other unexplained happenings of Senate House.

Wednesday 10 April 2024

Doors, books stall, and drinks from 6.15 pm
Talks 6.30 pm - 9.30 pm
£15 / £12 Advance tickets
Conway Hall, 25 Red Lion Square, London WC1R 4RL
Tube: Holborn
Directions
London Fortean's Mailing List
Facebook event page

Noah Angell – Ghosts of the British Museum: A True Story of Colonial Loot and Restless Objects

When artist and writer Noah Angell first heard murmurs of ghostly sightings at the British Museum he

had to find out more. What started as a trickle soon became a landslide as staff old and new, from guards of formidable build to respected curators, brought forth testimonies of their inexplicable supernatural encounters.

It became clear that the source of the disturbances was related to the Museum’s contents – unquiet objects, holy plunder, and restless human remains protesting their enforced stay within the colonial collection’s cases, cabinets and deep underground vaults. Be it wraiths associated with genocides, uprooted sacred beings or the afterglow of deaths that occurred inside the museum itself, according to those who have worked there, the museum is heaving with profound spectral disorder.

Noah’s book, available on the night, Ghosts of the British Museum fuses storytelling, folklore and history, digs deep into our imperial past and unmasks the world’s oldest national museum as a site of ongoing conflict, where under the guise of preservation, restless objects are held against their will.

It now appears that the objects are fighting back.


Roger Luckhurst – The Priestess of Amen-Ra: The British Museum Mummy Curse

This talk will take us back to stories about a cursed object in the Egyptian rooms of the British Museum that began to circulate twenty years before Tutankhamun fever. The true story of how the object was acquired by the Victorian gentleman Thomas Douglas Murray in the 1860s and its adventures in London drawing rooms before arriving in the Museum in 1889. The cast of this odd story includes occultists, Egyptologists, theosophists, psychical researchers, stuffed Pekingese dogs, and Sir Arthur Conan Doyle.

Roger Luckhurst has written and broadcast widely on popular culture, specialising in science fiction and the Gothic. He is interested in the odd spaces between science and popular supernatural beliefs. He has previously written a history of how the notion of 'telepathy' emerged in the late Victorian period, and has published editions of Jekyll and Hyde and Dracula. He is also a regular radio reviewer of terrible science fiction films. He teaches horror and the occasional respectable novel by Henry James at Birkbeck College, University of London.


Sarah Sparkes – The Ghosts of Senate House

Sarah Sparkes will talk about The Ghosts of Senate House, a creative research project, that collects and archives tales of hauntings and other unexplained happenings, centered at Senate House, University of London and its immediate surrounds. Sarah was a Research Fellow at the SAS UOL and also an artist and curator. Her talk will include examples of some of the stories collected by herself and Christopher Joseph as well as actual recordings she collected for the project.

Sarah will also illustrate how research material was developed into a series of collaborative, public artworks “The Magical Library Presents: Ghosts of Senate House” for The Bloomsbury Festival in 2011 and ‘The Electric Girl’ 2014, for Seance Month at Senate House Library. Sarah Sparkes runs the GHost project which she initiated with Ricarda Vidal in 2008. She is currently painting 101 GHost Stories, inspired by her research.



Wednesday 10 April 2024

Doors, books stall, and drinks from 6.15 pm
Talks 6.30 pm - 9.30 pm
£15 / £12 Advance tickets
Conway Hall, 25 Red Lion Square, London WC1R 4RL
Tube: Holborn
Directions
London Fortean's Mailing List
Facebook event page


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