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School of English News - Autumn 2017

Professor Nick Roe elected Fellow of the British Academy

Prof Nicholas RoeProfessor Nick Roe has been elected as a 2017 British Academy Fellow of Early Modern Languages and Literatures to 1830. The British Academy elects exceptional, primarily UK-based scholars across the humanities and social sciences whose scholarly research and publication record have achieved academic distinction:

Sixty-six other world-leading scholars were also announced as Fellows of the British Academy:

High Drama

Oliver Emanuel (photographer: Eoin Carey)Oliver Emmanuel's play Flight was awarded a Herald Angel for its production at the 2017 Edinburgh International Festival, featuring a soundtrack by Mark Melville and directed by Candice Edmunds and Jamie Harrison. The show draws on the novel Hinterland by Caroline Brothers, which she developed from her 'journalistic coverage of young migrants from Afghanistan'. Additionally, Flight was listed as one of the shows at EIF to receive the most 5-star reviews.

Zinnie Harris - Photographer: Sue Torkington

Zinnie Harris also received a Herald Angel for her trilogy This Restless House, her adaptation of Aeschylus' Oresteia; a new version of Eugène Ionesco's Rhinoceros; and the world premiere of Meet Me At Dawn. These plays formed 'the core of the EIF drama programme' for 2017. For more information, see the link to The Herald article below:

Virginia Woolf & Music

Dr Emma SuttonOn Wednesday 27th September, The Woolf & Music project-presented in collaboration with the Music Research Seminar Series-will host an afternoon of public talks and a live, informal music performance at the Byre Theatre in St Andrews. The subject of the event is the relationship between music and mental health, inspired by Woolf's representation of the shell-shocked veteran, Septimus, in Mrs Dalloway. Speakers include psychologist Dr Maggie Ellis, literary critic and St Andrews lecturer Dr Emma Sutton, and pianist Lana Bode who together will 'explore music's role in mental illness and creativity', including introductions to 'Woolf's musical hallucinations' and the effects of mental illness on classical composers Woolf enjoyed. The talks will also explore the relationship between music and dementia, and contemporary studies involving music as an aid to communication for the speech and memory impaired. For further information about the event, see:

For further information about the Woolf & Music project, see:

Public Lectures and Performances

Professor Susan Sellers will be delivering a lecture on 'Writing Mrs Dalloway', as part of a study day 'Reading Mrs Dalloway' on Saturday 16th September. The day is organised by Literature Cambridge for the ACE foundation, a charity which aims to promote cultural and international understanding through the advancement of education. For further information, see:

Prof Anne Coldiron

‌Professor Anne Coldiron will deliver the 2017 Erasmus Lecture at the University of Toronto in Canada on 5th October. Her lecture, 'The Renaissance Englishing of medieval auctoritas', considers how textual producers in the era of early printing reconstructed and sometimes subverted the established, international marks of authorship and authority for expanding English readerships. The new means of production, new economic realities in the book trades, and changing social contexts entailed some paradoxically conservative innovations in material and literary aesthetics.

Dr Jim Byatt will be taking part in a panel discussion at the Cheltenham Literature Festival on 6th October. He will be in conversation with Adrian Owen about his book Into the Grey Zone: A Neuroscientist Explores the Border Between Life and Death (Faber, 2017). The panel will be exploring the science of liminality, to which Jim will be contributing fictional imaginings of the life/death boundary. The link to the festival is:

The Don Paterson Situation, featuring Professor Don Paterson, will perform at The Maltings in Berwick upon Tweed on 6th October.

Medieval Colloquium

From 21st to 23rd September Dr Ian Johnson will be participating in the final meeting of COST-Action (an EU-funded network of 26 countries) titled 'New Communities of Interpretation (1350-1570)'. As part of this event, Ian, with Dr Lucie Doležalová from Charles University Prague, will be co-ordinating the summative colloquium of the Action’s Working Group 2, 'Strategies of Transformation: Translating, Writing, Reading, Collecting and Performing', to be held at the École Française de Rome on 22nd September. For more information, see this link:

Postgraduate News

Patrick ErringtonPatrick Errington recently won the 2017 Wigtown Poetry Competition and will be reading at the Wigtown Book Festival on 30th September. New poems will also be appearing in The Boston Review and Copper Nickel in October. In addition, Patrick’s French translation (with Laure Gall) of PJ Harvey's The Hollow of the Hand, entitled Au creux de la main, is now available from Éditions l’Àge d’Homme, and his own pamphlet of poetry is ready for publication by Ignition Press in early 2018. For further information, see:

In October Zoë Sutherland will take up a research fellowship at the International Center for Humanities and Social Change at the University of California, Santa Barbara, where she will continue her work on the interconnections between legal philosophy and imaginative literature, as part of an interdisciplinary team addressing issues around 'Fact and Value - after Truth'. Zoë studies the role of poetic making in how individuals come to know and value each other in the early modern period, as this relates to questions of freedom and equality in our own, a subject she will offer a course on at UCSB in the spring.

Alumnae News

How Saints DieThe debut novel of Carmen Marcus, How Saints Die, will be published on 13th September with Harvill Secker. The novel maps mythic structures over Marcus's childhood experiences of mental health and grief over the loss of her father. For more information on the How Saints Die, see:

Carmen also works as a performance poet who has been commissioned by the Royal Festival Hall, and has been named a BBC Radio 3 Verb New Voice. Carmen's blog can be found at:

Girls can do anythingCaitlin Doyle has a new book out entitled Girls Can Do Anything with Harper Collins, a collection of 200 entries of pioneering women throughout history across a multitude of employments, interests, and achievements. For more information, see:

The Divining PoolAmanda Merrit has an upcoming reading and Q&A at The Poetry Café on 18th October for the launch of her new book, The Divining Pool. The work looks fearlessly into the darkest recesses of the human heart and finds a terrible beauty within it. The launch is from 7-9pm at The Poetry Café, 22 Betterton St London WC2H 9BX (Entry is free).

Amanda recently completed her poetry MFA at St. Andrews where she was mentored by Professor Don Paterson. She was presented with the 2015 Anstruther Poetry Award and, in Canada, she has been published in Descant, Grain, Prairie Fire, Hart House Review, Qwerty, and Untethered. In the UK she has been published in Stand and Aesthetica’s 2017 Creative Writing Annual anthology. Merritt is based in Victoria, Canada. The Divining Pool is her debut collection of poetry.