Festival of Science 2023

September 2023
Staszic Palace, Warsaw, Poland

The last days of September we spent on the public dissemination of our knowledge and research results – by participating in the 27. edition of the Festival of Science in Warsaw, Poland.

On Saturday, September 23, 2023, three events took place.

1) ‘Na tropie dawnych bazgrołów, czyli jak odczytywać dawne zapiski. Warsztaty z paleografii  (ang. On the trail of old scribbles, or how to read old notes. Paleography workshop’) led by Olga M. Hajduk and Gniewomir Hawrasz.
The basics of paleography, from the theoretical and practical point of view was covered, i.a.: some alternative forms of writing (e.g. graphic symbols that are not letters); presentation and discussion of examples of abbreviations used in ancient writing sources; as well as some secrets about our research was shared, especially what sort of information can be read from the paper itself.

2) Potęga notatek – co filozof miał na myśli I co na myśli miałeś ty (en. ‘The power of notes – what the philosopher had in mind and what was in mind of yours’) led by Valentina Lepri.
How can one understand a philosophical text and, through understanding, produce new knowledge? The attempt was made to answer this question via conducting an experiment carried out together with the participants who were producing their own notes and discussing their style of noting together with our researchers.

3) ‘Stranger things. Lessons on friendship and trust in a weird world’ led by Luisa Brotto (University of Pisa, our former Fellow of Ulam Nawa NAWA – Seal of Excellence) and Matthias Roick (PASIFIC Postdoctoral Fellowships).
By dwelling on the past to learn about ideas about friendship and trust, the essential features of our social lives, the hosts showed how can we approach the following questions: (i) what can we keep and what must we leave behind?; (ii) who is your friend, and who can you trust?

On Monday, September 25, 2023, one meeting took place – it was the lesson of Luisa Brotto and Matthias Roick. Titled as ‘Ghosts of the Past? Trust and Friendship in Historical Perspective‘, this meeting received quite an interest, as 70 students from Warsaw high schools participated in it! All the attendees took a big step back, into the seventeenth century, and looked together at a range of interesting sources that showed them how people imagined trust and friendship, how they thought about these issues, and the stories they told each other to create a new and better society.

Each of the aforementioned events gathered diverse audiences with whom we happily discussed all the questions and comments made in the room, and to whom we are very grateful for their attendance.