Institute of Advanced Studies (IAS)


POSTPONED: The Invention of Freedom: On the Historical Sociology of a Western Paradox

14 December 2021, 6:00 pm–7:30 pm

Orlando Patterson

* THIS EVENT HAS BEEN POSTPONED * Renowned historical and cultural sociologist Professor Orlando Patterson discusses his work on slavery and freedom.

This event is free.

Event Information

Open to





Centre for the Study of the Legacies of British Slavery (LBS)


Jeffrey Hall
UCL Institute of Education (IOE)
20 Bedford Way
United Kingdom

* Please note, this event has been postponed *

This event will take place in-person. All staff, students and visitors are expected to be thoughtful and wear a face covering at all times whilst indoors on campus, unless they are medically exempt.

This event is organised by University of Bergen (Universitas Bergensis), the Centre for the Study of the Legacies of British Slavery (LBS), and the Sarah Parker Remond Centre (SPRC).

Orlando Patterson, a historical and cultural sociologist, is John Cowles Professor of Sociology at Harvard University. He previously held faculty appointments at the University of the West Indies, his alma mater, and the London School of Economics where he received his Ph.D. His academic interests include the culture and practices of freedom; the comparative study of slavery and ethno-racial relations; and the cultural sociology of poverty and underdevelopment with special reference to the Caribbean and African American youth. He has also written on the cultural sociology of sports, especially the game of cricket. Professor Patterson is the author of numerous academic papers and 6 major academic books including, Slavery and Social Death (1982); Freedom in the Making of Western Culture (1991); The Ordeal of Integration (1997); and The Cultural Matrix: Understanding Black Youth (2015).

A public intellectual, Professor Patterson was, for eight years, Special Advisor for Social policy and development to Prime Minister Michael Manley of Jamaica. He was a founding member of Cultural Survival, one of the leading advocacy groups for the rights of indigenous peoples, and was for several years a board member of Freedom House, a major civic organization for the promotion of freedom and democracy around the world.

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