Please arrive at 4.30pm if you wish to visit the Joseph Wright Gallery to view his painting of Erasmus Darwin before Patricia's talk begins at 5pm
Dr Erasmus Darwin seemed an innocuous Midlands physician and stalwart of 18th century society, but there was another side to him.
Botanist, physician, Lunar inventor and popular poet, Darwin was internationally renowned for extraordinary poems about sex and science, yet his character was savaged by London's satirists.
Intrigued, historian Patricia Fara set out to investigate why. His evolutionary ideas influenced his grandson Charles, were banned by the Vatican, and scandalized his critics. But he shines out as an impassioned Enlightenment reformer who championed the abolition of slavery and the education of women.
Image copyright Dorothy Livingston.