Can the cyclist and the city ever be friends? (190, March 2018)

Everyone is giving out. Cyclists complain about wheel-grabbing Luas tracks, rough road surfaces, daydreaming pedestrians, careless drivers, car-friendly media and unhelpful gardaí. Meanwhile, pedestrians and drivers complain about cyclists, especially the red-light breakers, the pedestrian-crossing blankers and the pavement dashers.

Is the problem just bad behaviour by individual road users? Is poor urban design pitting people against each other in a fight for scarce street space? And what can be done to bring peace and safety to our streets?

Free the cycle lains, cycle lain on O Connell street

At this event organised by Banter and Dublin Inquirer, we’ll tackle these issues and try not to either get trapped in the Luas tracks or break any red lights.

On the evening of Wednesday, 21 March, from 6:30pm to about 8:30pm, Dublin Inquirer and Banter will present a panel discussion of these issues.

The panelClaudine Chen (cycling advocate and a member of the Dublin Cycling Campaign), Jason Taylor (principal author of the Design Manual for Urban Roads and Streets, the government handbook on how to encourage sustainable travel in urban areas) and Jim Waldron from the National Private Hire & Taxi Association

The details: the event will be held at the Robert Emmet Community Development Project, (3-8 Usher Street, Dublin 8) on Wednesday March 21 at 6.30pm. Admission is free, but tickets must be booked in advance here.

Early bird tickets were available exclusively for Dublin Inquirer subscribers – you can subscribe and support the best publication about living and working in the capital here.

A night with the Media + Entertainment Psychology Lab (189, April 2018)

It gives us great pleasure to welcome the good people from the Media + Entertainment Psychology Lab back to Banter. They’ve joined us at Banteryard at The Beatyard festival in Dun Laoghaire 2016 and 2017 so we thought it was high time for them to take over a regular night and show their wares.

First things first: who are the Media + Entertainment Psychology Lab? Based out of the UCD School of Psychology, the Lab are a group of people who looks at how our engagement with immersive media and the boundary of perceived reality and entertainment can be harnessed to bring about positive change in people’s lives. It’s about the science of improving user experience, enjoyment, learning, physical and mental health.


For this event about “media is everywhere, but what do we get out of it?”, we’ll be joined by the following Lab members:

Claire Howlin – why the benefits of music listening on smart devices is more important than screen time risks

Brendan Rooney – separating the people from the devices, where do we draw the line

Nicola Fox Hamilton – the role of online platforms in dating and match making

Darragh Lynch – data mining and retrieving your media footprint from online dating websites

The details: Banter with the Media + Entertainment Psychology Lab takes place at The Liquor Rooms (Wellington Quay, Dublin 2) on Wednesday April 25 (reschedule from February 28). Doors open at 6pm and the event begins at 6.30pm-ish. Tickets are now available here and all proceeds will go to Chronic Pain Ireland.

Is Binn Béal Ina Thost: Comhráite Ciotacha (188, Jan 2018)

Bliain na Gaeilge faoi lán tseoil, bíodh sé go bhfuil muid tógtha leis an gcoincheap nó nach bhfuil. Bíonn an teanga go minic ina cnámh spairne i measc Bhéarlóirí agus airíonn pobal na Gaeilge gur dóibh í a chosaint. Tabharfaidh an painéal faoina bhfuil le plé eadrainn féin mar phobal, comhráite míchompordacha san áireamh!

Roinnfidh Cilian Fennell (Stiúrthóir, Stillwater Communications), Hannah Ní Bhaoill (eagraí Féile na Gealaí), Osgur Ó Ciardha (comhbhunaitheoir Pop Up Gaeltacht) agus Sinéad Ní Uallacháin (craoltóir le RTÉ Raidió na Gaeltachta) a dtuairimí ar cheisteanna ciotacha in atmaisféar neamhfhoirmiúil. Is í Áine Ní Bhreisleáin, craoltóir RTÉ Raidió na Gaeltachta, a bheidh ina bean a’tí ag an ócáid seo, ó Banter i gcomhphairt le RTÉ.

Beidh an ócáid ar siúl in The Liquor Rooms (Cé Wellington, BÁC 2- in aice óstán Clarence) ar an gCéadaoin, 31 Eanáir. Osclóidh na doirsie ag 6 i.n., tosóidh an plé ag 6.30 i.n. agus tá na ticéid ar fáil anseo anois. Rachaidh an t-airgead a bhailítear óna ticéid chuig An Simon Community.


Bliain na Gaeilge is upon us, whether we like the concept or not. Irish is often a bone of contention amongst those who don’t speak it resulting in the Irish language community stepping into protective mode. The panel will look at the conversations we’re often uncomfortable having, even amongst ourselves.

The panel: Cilian Fennell, Director of Stillwater Communications, Hannah Ní Bhaoill, Organiser of Féile na Gealaí, Osgur Ó Ciardha, co-founder of the Pop Up Gaeltacht and Sinéad Ní Uallacháin, Broadcaster with RTÉ Raidió na Gaeltachta will share their opinions in an informal atmosphere. Áine Ní Bhreisleáin, broadcaster with RTÉ Raidió na Gaeltachta, will host this event, presented by Banter in association with RTÉ.

The event will take place at The Liquor Rooms (Wellington Quay, Dublin 2 – next to the Clarence Hotel) on Wednesday January 31. Doors open at 6pm, the discussion kicks off at 6.30pm and tickets are now available here. All proceeds raised will go to the Simon Community

Please note that this event will be held through Irish. 

A conversation with Johann Hari (187, Jan 2018)

Johann Hari joins us at Banter on Tuesday January 23 to talk about his new book and other matters. Lost Connections: Uncovering the Real Causes of Depression—and the Unexpected Solution is about a subject matter which affects many people in Ireland and around the world.


Indeed, the author himself has suffered from depression since he was a child. He was told by doctors that his problems were caused by a chemical imbalance in his brain and started taking chemical antidepressants at 18. Yet, like so many others, he remained depressed. The proportion of people on antidepressants who continue to be depressed is found to be between 65 and 80 percent.

Hari thought he was unusual for remaining depressed while taking a chemical treatment – but it turned out he was typical. Using his training as a social scientist at Cambridge University, Hari began to investigate the causes of depression and anxiety – and discovered the cutting edge science that shows there is strong evidence they are not caused by a spontaneous chemical imbalance in our brains.

He discovered that, in reality, depression and anxiety are caused largely by crucial changes in the way we are living. If the problem isn’t mainly in our brains but in our lives, a whole different set of paths out of depression and anxiety open up. This led him to discover the evidence for seven new paths out of depression and anxiety – ones that are very different to the paths we have been offered up to now.


Lost Connections: Uncovering the Real Causes of Depression—and the Unexpected Solutions is the story of Hari’s three-year journey into this evidence, and gives rise to a radically new way of thinking about depression. It is based on three years of detailed research covering over 30,000 miles. Hari conducted over 200 interviews, ranging from the world’s leading scientists, to an Amish village, to an uprising in Berlin, to a series of remarkable experiments in Baltimore. Using vivid human stories and the best social science, he explains the evidence for seven crucial changes that are making us depressed and anxious, along with two biological causes that interact with them.

Hari is the New York Times bestselling author of Chasing the Scream, which is currently being made into a Hollywood film. Since he stopped being a columnist for the Independent in 2011, he has written for the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, the Guardian, Le Monde, the Spectator, Politico, Salon and many others.

The details: Banter’s conversation with Johann Hari takes place at The Workman’s Club (Wellington Quay, Dublin 2) on Tuesday January 23. Doors open at 6pm, the event begins at 6.30pm and will include an audience Q&A and book signing. Tickets are now available here.

An evening with Barry Hyde (186, Jan 2018)

For the fifth January in a row, we’re very pleased to be involved in the First Fortnight mental health arts festival. It’s a fantastic initiative as it puts the focus firmly on challenging mental health prejudice through arts and cultural action at the very start of the year.

This year, we’re joined by Barry Hyde, a musician and performer who first found success as the frontman with The Futureheads when he was 19 years old. That was was also the year he had his first manic episode. For Banter at First Fortnight, Hyde will join us to talk about his life, music and how solo album “Maldoy” played a big part in his recovery. He will also perform songs from the album.


The details: an evening with Barry Hyde will take place at The Workman’s Club, Dublin on Tuesday January 9 at 6.45pm and tickets are available here.