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School of English news - July-August 2014

Fiction prize and poetry shortlist

Little EgyptLesley Glaister has won the Jerwood Fiction Uncovered Prize 2014 for her novel Little Egypt. Lesley's novel, which was featured here in March, was described by the judges as 'wonderful and moving storytelling'.  

All one breathProfessor John Burnside has been shortlisted for 'Best Collection' for the Forward Prize for his new volume All One Breath, which was featured here in March. John won the prize in 2011. 

Conferences, talks and performances

Professors Neil Rhodes and Susan Sellers, Dr Louise Wilson and Zinnie Harris will be involved in a variety of talks and performances this summer.

During a recent visit to Spain as Visiting Professor at the University of Granada, Professor Neil Rhodes was guest speaker at the Shakespeare 450th birthday celebrations at the Fray Luis de Granada high school, which operates on a bi-lingual basis. He also gave a presentation on his recent book English Renaissance Translation Theory in the Faculty of Translation at the University

On June 30th, Dr Louise Wilson will give a paper entitled 'Translation and the Transformation of the Romance Reader' at the conference 'Romance and its Transformations, 1550-1750' at Chawton House Library. On 13th July, she will be speaking at the 'Translating the Consequences of Reading Fiction in Early Modern England' at the Society for Renaissance Studies conference at the University of Southampton, which runs between 13th-15th July. On Saturday 26th July, Louise will speak at a one-day symposium organised by the School of English on 'Reading and Health in Early Modern England'. The other speakers are Dr Tom Charlton (Stirling), Dr Sylvie Kleiman-Lafon (University of Paris 3), Dr Kate Loveman (Leicester), Dr Mary Ann Lund (Leicester), Professor Jennifer Richards (Newcastle), Dr Helen Smith (York), and Professor Richard Wistreich (Royal Northern College of Music). 

On August 1st, Professor Susan Sellers will give the summer lecture at Monk's House, Virginia Woolf's home, in Rodmell Sussex.

Zinnie Harris has written a text that will be set to music as part of a new music concert entitled 'Three Fables  - Tales from the Commonwealth' at the Southbank in London on 6th July, and again at the Glasgow Concert Hall on 2nd August. The piece was commissioned to coincide with the commonwealth games and aims to celebrate music and stories from around the Commonwealth. For more details, please see

Zinnie will also be directing 'Letters Home' at the Edinburgh Book Festival in August, a series of fictional letters by leading writers Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, Kei Miller, Kamila Shamsie and Christos Tsiolkas. The performance will be given by the award-winning Grid Iron theatre company.

Postgraduate News

Publication for Samantha Clark, and conference talks for Lenore Bell and Adam Welstead.

Samantha Clark's creative nonfiction essay 'The Curator's Room' will be published in August in Journal of the Built and Natural Environments, along with a series of photographs taken in Edinburgh University's Natural History Collection. A series of blog posts on 'The Content of Nothing' will appear on the blog site over the coming months, the result of a collaboration with the artist Judy Spark that originated in a joint presentation to the DART research seminar series at Gray's School of Art last year. On June 10th, Sam presented an excerpt from a creative nonfiction work in progress 'The Subtle Ether' at the Bread Loaf Orion Environmental Writer's Conference at Middlebury College (Vermont, USA).

On July 16th, Adam Welstead will be taking part in the 'Post-Apocalypse' panel of the What Happens Now: 21st Century Writing in English conference, University of Lincoln.  On August 17th, Adam will be presenting at the 'Imagining Britain' session of Loncon 3 ('Diversity in Speculative Fiction'), the academic subset of the 72nd World Science Fiction Convention in London.

On 29th July, Lenore Bell will be presenting at the first annual 'Fears and Anxieties in the 21st Century: The European Context' conference in Oxford. Her paper is entitled 'Tough Asher: Adventure Races in the wake of 9/11'. 


Poetry shortlists and new publication.

Joining Professor Burnside on the Forward shortlist are two former creative writing students from the School, Niall Cambell and Fiona Benson. Another former student, Rachael Boast, has been shortlisted for the Griffin Prize for her volume Pilgrim’s Flower - one of only four titles chosen from 2000 titles worldwide.

Marina Cano Lopez has had an essay entitled 'The Outlandish Jane: Austen and Female Identity in Victorian Female Periodicals' in The Victorian Periodicals Review.