Fruitful discussions and sharing ideas at Clare College, Cambridge

Scandal and Fire!

We have another wonderful set of presentations lined up for our second Clareity of Michaelmas! Kasia Brzezinska will discuss scandal and creation of celebrity in Regency England, and Olly McMillan will explore a potential solution to managing hazardous chemical waste. As always pizza, snacks, wine, and other drinks provided! (Abstracts below)
‘Self-Fashioning, Celebrity and Scandal in Regency England:
Harriette Wilson and her Memoirs’
Harriette Wilson was one of the most celebrated courtesans of the Regency period and mistress to some of England’s most powerful men. But she became infamous once her career as a courtesan had ended, for the writing and publication of her Memoirs in which she detailed her exploits as a means of blackmailing her former lovers. Published serially in twelve installments during 1825, the Memoirs sparked public outrage and ran into multiple editions, translations and pirated versions to become a ‘media event’. My Master’s thesis explored the Memoirs in the context of celebrity culture, arguing that through the writing and publication of the text, Wilson was complicit in the shaping of her scandalous celebrity and exercised agency by asserting control over her public image. She did so through an astute self-fashioning which relied on a balancing of contradictions, simultaneously adhering to and rejecting contemporary gender norms and moral conventions.
Setting Things on Fire to Save the World: Biochar for Environmental Remediation.
Land can become contaminated in a range of ways, including chemical spills, leaks, improper waste disposal, or over application of agricultural products. This can result in hazardous chemicals being transported to rivers, lakes or groundwater where they have severe health effects on humans and ecosystems. The vast majority of contaminated sites are managed through excavating the contaminated soil to a landfill, which involves high consumption of materials and land and presents risks of recontamination. Recent research has shown that applying biochar may be able to remediate contaminants in a much more sustainable way. Biochar is the product of pyrolysis (heating without air; not actually burning), and has a whole host of environmental benefits when applied to soil, including carbon sequestration, improved nutrient control and water retention. My research focuses on the adsorption of soil contaminants to the surface of biochar for restoring hazardous sites.
-Andrés Bustamante

For your diaries!
What: Clareity Matters
When: Thursday 3rd November 2016 7pm
Where: Clare MCR
Who: For everyone that is interested!