Audio and video

Watch and listen to writers and researchers from the School of English.

Zinnie Harris discusses writing female protagonists for the stage

Recorded in December 2016, Tiyatroya kadın kahramanlar yazmak translates to "Writing Female Protagonists for the Stage".  Zinnie Harris discusses writing female protagonists for the stage, and LGBTQ and women's rights.

The participants were (from left to right) Ebru Nihan Celkan (playwright, dramaturg and the founder of buluTiyatro), Ayşe Gül Altınay (Director of SU Gender Research Centre and Associate Professor of Anthropology at Sabancı University), Professor Zinnie Harris (University of St Andrews), and Erdem Avsar (DOT Theatre, Istanbul).

Zinnie Harris panel discussion

Seamus Heaney in St Andrews

In June 2013 Seamus Heaney came to St Andrews to give an illustrated reading of some of his poems that are translated from, and inspired by, medieval literature. This reading was part of a conference called 'The Middle Ages in the Modern World', which was held to celebrate the University's 600th anniversary. Sadly, it turned out to be Heaney's last public appearance outside of Ireland.

Here you can listen to Heaney read from, and talk about, his translations of Beowulf, of Robert Henryson's poems, and the Middle English 'Names of the Hare'. Heaney also reads a poem by William Dunbar, probably a graduate of the University of St Andrews.

Poet Douglas Dunn in conversation with Robert Crawford

Douglas talks about his life, work, friendship with Philip Larkin, love of jazz, Byron, teaching writing at St Andrews, and living in Hull and Dairsie.

Prof Douglas Dunn

Robert Crawford performing 'Clan Donald's Call to Battle at Harlaw'

Professor Robert Crawford gave a reading Lachlan Mór MacMhuirich's poem 'Clan Donald's Call to Battle at Harlaw' during the graduation address at the winter 2013 ceremony.

Robert Crawford at graduation

Chris Jones discusses Pete Seeger and the ubi sunt motif

On 31 January 2014, following the death of Pete Seeger, Chris Jones appeared on BBC Radio 3's The Verb, talking to Ian McMillan about the medieval poetic ubi sunt device in relation to Seeger's song 'Where Have All the Flowers Gone?' Chris' piece starts at 34:06.

The Flyting of Kennedy and Dunbar

The 15th-century poet William Dunbar was probably a graduate of the University of St Andrews. One of his most famous poems is a 'flyting' between himself and a friend, the poet Walter Kennedy. A 'flyting' was a kind of medieval poetic duel, in which poets strove to out-insult each other.

On 8 March 2013, Chris Jones and Robert Crawford re-created the flyting at a sell-out performance at StAnza, Scotland's International Poetry Festival. Their colleague, the medievalist Rhiannon Purdie presided over the flyting, introducing the event and explaining its background.

Reading Shakespeare's Sonnets

In this recording, poet and Emeritus Professor Don Paterson talks about his book Reading Shakespeare's Sonnets and reads from the sonnets.

The Bard: Robert Burns, A Biography

Emeritus Professor Robert Crawford talks about his book The Bard: Robert Burns, A Biography and his motivations for writing it.