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Leading philosopher to talk on the meaning of learning and life

One of Scotland’s leading thinkers on learning and life will deliver a lecture on moral and spiritual fulfilment at the University of Aberdeen tonight.

Lord Sutherland of Houndwood, FBA, President, The Royal Society of Edinburgh, is a distinguished academic in the Philosophy of Religion. He will address a crowd of almost 200 people when he delivers Nomad’s Progress – The British Academy Isaiah Berlin Lecture, at King’s College Conference Centre, at 6.00pm.

The Isaiah Berlin lecture is the flagship lecture of the British Academy, and it is presented each year in London and in one other city. This will be the first time that Aberdeen has been the venue for the lecture.

Lord Sutherland first delivered the lecture, entitled 'Nomad's Progress', at the British Academy last year. In it he explores the metaphor of journey and destination, drawing on the classic works of Plato and Bunyan. He argues that the traditional metaphor of a spiritual 'pilgrim' has lost its force, and offer alternatives for today's society.

Lord (Stewart Ross) Sutherland is President of The Royal Society of Edinburgh and former Principal and Vice Chancellor of the University of Edinburgh as well as a graduate of Aberdeen.

The Council of the British Academy nominated Lord Sutherland to deliver the Isaiah Berlin lecture in October 2004. This particular lecture series is a new addition to the Academy’s prestigious programme of lectures established under the will of Sir Isaiah Berlin (President of the British Academy 1974 – 1978). The lecture is intended to appraise the contemporary condition of any one of the fields of learning with which the Academy is concerned.

Elly Rothnie, Events Officer at the University of Aberdeen, said: “The Isaiah Berlin will be a highlight of what has been an incredibly popular and stimulating season of public lectures at the University. We look forward to welcoming distinguished speaker Lord Sutherland and another capacity crowd for what promises to be an illuminating evening.”

To reserve your free place call 01224 273726 or email

PHOTO OPPORTUNITY: You are invited to send a reporter/photographer to Nomad’s Progress – The British Academy Isaiah Berlin Lecture, at King’s College Conference Centre, tonight, Thursday, February 17, at 5.40pm.

More background on Lord Sutherland
Born in Aberdeen in 1941 and educated at Woodside School and Robert Gordons College, Aberdeen, Stewart Sutherland subsequently attended the University of Aberdeen, from which he graduated MA with First Class Honours in Mental Philosophy in 1963. Between 1963 and 1965, he attended Corpus Christi College, Cambridge where he held the Manners Honorary Scholarship, graduating MA with First Class Honours in the Philosophy of Religion.


Notes to Editors

Issued by the Communications Team, Office of External Affairs, University of Aberdeen, King's College, Aberdeen. Tel: (01224) 272014.

Issued on: Thursday 17th of February 2005

Ref: 1594nomad

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