The Story of Pain

3 February 2015
Upper Stage
Discussing the historical, social and psychological dimensions of pain
Free admission
How do we talk about pain and how has the way we do so changed over time? How hard is it to describe pain and how can putting pain into words impact on a person’s mental state? What is the public face of pain in a society at risk and in crisis? How do different disciplines—Medicine, Biology, History, Anthropology and Art History—refer to pain? What light can interdisciplinary discussion shine on pain?

The OCC is staging a discussion on the historical, psychological, medical, artistic and social dimensions of pain to coincide with the publication of Joanna Bourke’s The Story of Pain: From Prayer to Painkillers by the Oxford University Press. The celebrated British historian and author heads the interdisciplinary Pain Project funded by the Wellcome Trust at Birkbeck College, London.


Joanna Bourke: Professor of History, Birkbeck  College, University of London
Pepi Rigopoulou: Professor of Art History, University of Athens
Athena Athanasiou: Associate Professor of Social Anthropology, Panteion University
Evangelos Panagiotakos: MD, specialized in Anesthesiology and Intensive Care, with further expertise in Pain Medicine and Interventional Pain Medicine (

Dimitris Papanikolaou: Associate Professor of Modern Greek Studies, University of Oxford

Dimitris Papanikolaou
Afroditi Panagiotakou

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Entrance to all the events in the “Talks and Thoughts” Cycle is free and on a first come, first served basis.
The distribution of entrance tickets begins one (1) hour before each event.
Simultaneous translation is provided in the case of speakers using a language other than Greek.

The "Talks & Thoughts" events are also live streamed on
The videos are also available after the end of the shows.

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Supported by

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Medical cover