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Surveillance, Religion, and Security – Workshop One

lyon-public-lecture-17oct2016-150wAs part of this first workshop Prof. David Lyon, Queen’s University, Kingston, Ontario, Canada gave a public lecture in central Birmingham, UK on 17 October 2016.

‘Why is everyday surveillance a religious issue?’

Lyon’s lecture is available in audio here:

The call for papers for Workshop Three (in London 20-22 November 2017) is available here. Details about the public lecture associated with this forthcoming workshop will be available shortly.

Questions for Further Discussion

You might find the following questions helpful as a way of thinking further – on your own or with a group.

Where do you encounter surveillance?  In what ways is surveillance part of your professional responsibilities?

In what ways does Lyon’s definition of surveillance chime with your experience? How does it not capture your encounters with surveillance? (As a reminder, here is the definition of surveillance he gave in his lecture: ‘the operations and the experiences of gathering and analysing personal data for influence, entitlement, or management’.)

What does your religious or philosophical tradition say about the dignity of human persons? How do you think surveillance diminishes that dignity? How does (or might) surveillance protect or advance human dignity?

How does your religious or philosophical tradition relativise/challenge political power? How does this affect your view of surveillance?

What does ‘trust and promise’ mean for re-classifying the human face of surveillance?

What forms of surveillance might you wish to celebrate? How might your religious community help you in this?