Professor Raymond Tallis

Between 1987 and 2006 Raymond Tallis was Professor of Geriatric Medicine at the University of Manchester and a consultant physician in Health Care of the Elderly in Salford. He also advised the government on health care of older people and in particular on the development of stroke services.

Most of his 200 research publications are in the field of neurology of old age (epilepsy and stroke) and neurological rehabilitation.  He has published original articles in Nature Medicine, Lancet and other leading journals. In 2000 he was elected Fellow of the Academy of Medical Sciences and has been involved in producing two major reports for that institution: Restoring Neurological Function: Putting the neurosciences to work in neurorehabilitation (2004); and Rejuvenating Ageing Research (2009).

In 2002 he was awarded the Dhole Eddlestone Prize; in 2006 the Founders Medal of the British Geriatrics Society; in 2007, the Lord Cohen Gold Medal for Research into Ageing.

He has published fiction (a novel and short stories), three volumes of poetry, and 22 books on the philosophy of mind, philosophical anthropology, literary theory, the nature of art,  and cultural criticism.  These offer a critique of current predominant intellectual trends and an alternative understanding of human consciousness, the nature of language and of what it is to be a human being.  For this he has been awarded two honorary degrees: DLitt (Hon Causa) University of Hull, 1997; and LittD (Hon Causa) University of Manchester 2002.

In 2008 he was appointed Honorary Visiting Professor in the Department of English at the University of Liverpool. He was on the judging panel of the Wellcome Trust Book Prize. He writes regularly for The Times  and has a column in Philosophy Now. For the last few years he has appeared regularly at the leading literary and science festivals such as Hay and Cheltenham. He is a frequent broadcaster, with recent appearances on Start the Week, Nightwaves, Inside the Ethics Committee and The Moral Maze. His two latest books are Reflections of a Metaphysical Flaneur and Other Essays (Spring 2003) and NHS SOS (Edited with Jacky Davis, Summer 2013).

 Related Sessions

Sunday 2 November 2008, 12.45pm Seminar Space
Is our behaviour determined by our evolution?

Sunday 2 November 2008, 4.00pm Lecture Theatre 1
Hypochondriac Nation


Aping Mankind: Neuromania, Darwinitis and the Misrepresentation of Humanity (Acumen, 2011)
The Kingdom of Infinite Space (Atlantic, 2008)
Hunger (Acumen, 2008)
The Enduring Significance of Parmenides (Continuum, 2007)
Hippocratic Oaths: Medicine and Its Discontents (Atlantic Books, 2004)
The Knowing Animal: A Philosophical Inquiry into Knowledge and Truth(Edinburgh University Press, 2004)
The Hand: A Philosophical Inquiry into Human Being(Edinburgh University Press, 2003)

 Festival Buzz

"I was amazed by the high quality of the Battle of Ideas 2007 and the intellectual excitement that it provoked."
Prof Malcolm Grant CBE, president and provost, University College London