Faversham Stoa is a pub philosophy discussion group. We meet the 3rd Tuesday of every month from 7.30 to 9.30pm in the The Bull in Tanners Street. There's no charge for membership and everyone is welcome to drop in. Just bring your brain and some beer money!

Next Meeting – “Metaphor!”

Tuesday 16 June 2015 7.30 — 9.30pm, at the Bull

Maurice Sanders, who hails from Yorkshire, is no stranger to our meetings and has led discussions several times before including such subjects as the philosophy of engineering and the balance of nature. Maurice is gracing us with a return visit to lead a discussion on Metaphors.

So... what is a metaphor and how does 'it' work?

How pervasive is it culturally and how does its use differ from culture to culture? Is it primarily a literary device—an embellishment or decorative feature of the language—or is it something more fundamental than that?

Is it the preserve of the arts particularly poetry and literature or is the use of metaphor to be found in science and even mathematics.

And to what extent does metaphor become politically and socially potent to the extent that 'it' acts as a prism through which the world is experienced?


Mon 15 June to Fri 19 June: Conference to mark the 800th anniversary of Magna Carta held at the Medway campus of the University of Kent.

A Conference to mark the 800th anniversary of Magna Carta, organised by the Human Rights Office, based in Medway, and supported by the Magna Carta Trust's 800th Anniversary Commemoration Committee and Kent Humanists. More...

Sun 28 June 2015—The Virtues of the Table

Philosopher, journalist and broadcaster, Julian Baggini will be talking about his latest book entitled The Virtues of the Table. In his book he argues that how we eat, farm and shop for food is not only a matter of taste. Our choices regarding what we eat involve every essential aspect of our human nature: the animal, the sensuous, the social, the cultural, the creative, the emotional and the intellectual. Thinking seriously about food requires us to consider our relationship to nature, to our fellow animals, to each other and to ourselves. If we get our relationship with food right we get our relationship with life in general right. More... and More...

This is a Kent Humanist event which will be of interest to Stoa members. 2:30–4:30 at the Canterbury Red Cross Hall

Tue 21 July 2015—Free will

One of our regular members, Graham Warner, will be leading a discussion on free-will. The question he faces is whether he can choose to attend the meeting or has he been predestined to attend? Come and find out!

Tue 18 August 2015—If I ruled the world...

It has been our tradition for some time now to have a do-it-yourself medley-type meeting in August where each member brings their own idea for discussion by the group. Following on from the General Election we thought it would be a good idea to each bring a policy to discuss. It can be something that a party has already proposed or it can be as radical and off-the-wall as you like. This is your opportunity to mount your metaphorical soap-box.

Tue 15 September 2015—What's the point of space research?

You may remember a number reports in the news at the end of last year about a company who are trying to raise crowd-funding for a lunar research project. It so happens that David Iron, the brains behind the project, is based on Faversham and is running the project, called 'Lunar Mission One' from offices in the town. David has kindly agreed to come along to our September meeting to lead a discussion on the value of space research and pure science in general. Sadly his project is automated and will not be recruiting astronauts so don't bother bringing your CV!

You can find out more about the project by having a look at their new webs site.


All about the Stoa

What is the Stoa?

The Stoa is a philosophy discussion group which meets every month in the The Bull pub in Tanners Street, Faversham to talk about serious issues but without being too solemn about it. None of us are professional, academic philosophers and although it's "popular" philosophy we're interested it's never dumbed-down!

When do you meet?

We meet on the 3rd Tuesday of every month from 7.30 — 9.30pm although many members continue informal discussion in the bar after the meeting finishes.

Where do you meet?

We meet in the back bar of The Bull pub in Tanners Street, Faversham, ME13 7JL. Directions...

How much does it cost?

There is no charge for membership but we do have a whip-round of £1 each just to cover the cost of the room.

What kinds of things do you discuss?

Browse through our Topics page to see what we've discussed at previous meetings.

What do you do?

Each meeting is led by a member or a visiting speaker and is generally based one or more articles we have all read (although it's not critical that you read the articles beforehand). Links to all the articles can be found on the Topics page and the dates of meetings can be found on the Schedule page (which includes a link back to the relevant reading).

Who can attend?

Everybody is welcome!

How can I get on your mailing list?

Drop us a line via the Contact form and you will be receive our monthly bulletin "News from the Stoa".

Why 'Stoa'?

In classical Greek architecture the stoa was the covered promenade attached to the marketplace which became the place where philosophers frequently met to dialogue and debate. In fact it was this habit of regularly meeting in the stoa that earned the 'Stoic' school their epithet: it simply meant "guys who hang out at the stoa and chew the fat!". I like to think that the title of our group suggests an open marketplace where ideas can be traded and critical thinking is our currency.

You might also like to compare the ancient Greek stoa with our marketplace at the centre of Faversham. There are some very close similarities and so that gives us another association with the title.

What is Marginalia?

Marginalia is a blog containing random notes, scribbles, comments, jottings and drolleries on a variety of philosophical topics, including those discussed at the Faversham Stoa. While the notes in the topics section of this site are intended to be fairly impartial, the ideas and polemics in Marginalia are unapologetically my own. You are welcome, indeed encouraged, to append your comments to the entries and start a conversation.


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