February English and Drama Newsletter 2020

We are excited to share our English and Drama events and news with you.

Pictured above from left to right:

Dominic Johnson (Drama) gives an interview where he discusses his research which engages with LGBTQIA+ histories and practices. Read it

LGBT poetry night by the English Society for LGBT History Month.

Aida Edemariam one of the new judges for Queen Mary Wasafiri New Writing Prize 2020.

Lois Weaver (Drama) hosts a long table on Queer Spaces & Anti-Capitalist Resistance in Brighton this weekend.

Will Bowers (English) who has a new book published this month. Don’t forget it’s LGBT+ History Month and there’s lots going on at Queen Mary.


See the full programme


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Events

New Queers on the Block
8 Feb, Brighton

Lois Weaver (Drama) will host a Long Table on Queer Spaces & Anti-Capitalist Resistance in Brighton as part of New Queers on the Block Weekender.

Oozing Gloop (Drama graduate) will present The Gloop Show episode 2 on the same day. Karis Shearer Archiving Performance and Feminist Close Listening 12 Feb, QMUL (Graduate Centre GC202 3-5pm) Karis will be speaking about archival work and its hidden aspects, in a discussion informed by the methodology of ‘feminist close listening’. All staff and postgraduate students especially welcome for further information please contact Howard Finn at h.j.finn@qmul.ac.uk.

Drama QUORUM Postgraduate Research Seminar: Louise Owen
12 Feb, QMUL

Louise Owen will give a seminar: Social Relations: Money in Performance.

Dancing for DoVES Charity Event
12 Feb, QMUL

Vote for your favourite SED couple in this dance special organised in aid of Domestic Violence UK including special guest judge Janette Manrara (Strictly Come Dancing).

Register here

English Postgraduate Research Seminar:
Rachel Gregory-Fox

13 Feb, QMUL

Our very own Rachel Gregory-Fox will give a seminar:  Over My Dead Body: Female Dissidence, Corporeal Testimony, and Fatal Agency.

Register here

Capital Forms Reading Group: Labour
13 Feb, QMUL

Our very own Martin Young (Drama) will facilitate a session discussing artistic labour and its wider economic and cultural stakes.

Register here

National Portrait Gallery Visit
15 Feb, QMUL

To prepare for their upcoming life drawing class on 21 February, QMUL Art Society are arranging a museum trip to the National Portrait Gallery.

Register here

LGBT+ Poetry Reading – English Society
27 Feb, QMUL

An event open to all to celebrate LGBT+ History Month. Bring your own poem encouraged.

Register here

News

People

Will Bowers (English) launches his book The Italian Idea Anglo-Italian Radical Literary Culture, 1815–1823.

Shane Boyle (Drama) will give a presentation called The Fossil Economy of Live Art at the Glasgow Theatre Seminar.

Charlote Byrne (English/Comparative Literature) will be launching her Young Adult novel on Tuesday 3 March. Details here

Josh Fraser (English student) reveals all about the English society for Cub magazine. Read the piece


Saramarie Harvie (English student) hosted and curated Show and Tell #11 with a fantastic panel of speakers including: Sumaya Kassim Writer and Researcher (The Museum Will Not Be Decolonised) presenting inspiring intersectional mini talks.

Jen Harvie (Drama) has given a presentation on Genderqueering Time, Ageing and Relationships, with Split Britches at the

British Academy Conference: Narratives of old age and gender.

Kerry Hunt (Drama graduate pictured above in header image) is our student of the month. Read her thoughts

Dominic Johnson (Drama) is quoted in the Times Higher Education around the classroom as a safe space. Read the piece

Nisha Ramayya (Creative Writing)’s book was reviewed in The Guardian. She will be giving readings at The Serpentine Gallery, London on Friday 7 February, in Oxford on 10 Feb and on 20 Feb in Dundee. Nisha also starts a residency at John Hansard Gallery in Southampton with a group exhibition featuring Turner Prize winner Lawrence Abu Hamdan.

Matthew Rubery (English) has co-edited a new book called Further Reading, which is published today.

Lois Weaver (Drama) will host a Long Table on Queer Spaces & Anti-Capitalist Resistance in Brighton.

Announcements

Submissions are now open for the 2020 Queen Mary Wasafiri New Writing Prize – enter by 1 June.

Save the date – 28 March: ‘Festival Economies: Sustaining Creative Communities of Practice’ will look at the economic impact and value of festivals with panel discussions on Outdoor Arts, Fringe, Carnival, and showcasing findings from our QMUL Centre for the Creative and Cultural Economy‘s mapping of the Durga Puja in West Bengal. Follow Network on Twitter for announcements

Follow us on Twitter for rolling updates  

Four Eye-Opening Careers Events in February 2020

Please note for all links you need to be logged in to Target Connect.

More info here

Routes into Teaching – Tuesday 11th February, 18:00-20:00

Keen to explore a career in teaching but unsure of the route to take? Join us for an exciting panel featuring multiple teaching providers. This event will give you the opportunity to hear from recent graduates, recruitment staff and senior staff who will tell you about their training programs, recruitment processes, the types of opportunities available and what it’s like to work for them. There will be an opportunity for informal networking and Q&A with the representatives.
Confirmed providers include:
Ark Teacher Training
Department of Education – Train to Teach
Burnt Mill Academy Trust
St Mary’s University
Teach First
The Thinking Schools Academy Trust

Book here

Looking for an LGBT+ friendly employer – Wednesday 12th February, 16:00-18:00

Looking for an LGBT+ friendly employer, not sure where to begin? Join us as part of the Students’ Union LGBT+ History Month and ahead of the Pride Careers Fair to find out the key aspects to look for when searching for the right employer to begin your career journey. Hear from a panel who will give invaluable advice and talk about their personal experiences.

Topics will include:

How to identify a supportive employer
How to come out at work and the benefits
How to build a network
What LGBT+ students have to offer

We’ll be hearing from:

Triona Desmond – lesbian co-parent and Senior Chartered Trade Mark Attorney at Pinsent Masons LLP. 
Sal Morton (he/they) – a queer artsperson and senior researcher and content writer for career guide Chambers Student.
Daniel Nasr – diversity & inclusion specialist for the charity and international development sectors, currently leading on Unicef’s inclusion strategy in the U.K.
Dr Lipi Begum– senior fashion and sustainability lecturer and researcher for the University of the Arts London.
Kenneth Pritchard – gay public affairs and strategic communications professional for the Post Office.

Timings for the event will be as follows:
16:00-17:00 Panel conversation
17:00-17:30 Audience Q&A
17:30-18:00 Chit chat

Book here or just turn up on the day

Media Summit – Wednesday 19th February, 17:00-19:00

Interested in the Media sector? Journalism? Publishing? Theatre? Radio? Join us to explore a variety of industries and roles. Learn why these roles are realistic to pursue and how to secure a position in your chosen sector. You will hear from professionals who will talk about their personal experience of the sector and give you top tips along the way! Come prepared with some questions and be ready to do some valuable networking.

Confirmed representatives include (with more to follow!):

Senior Editorial Manager, Penguin Random House

Radio presenter at the BBC
Head of Content for Riviera Maritime Media
Head of Strategy and Planning at Liberty Communications
Theatre Manager at Ambassador Theatre Group

Book here

Why Big Business is Interested in Humanities Students! – Thursday 20th February, 16:00-17:15

PriceWaterhouse Coopers (PwC) is a global professional services firm operating in 157 countries and employing 276,000 staff in 100s of different roles advising businesses on  areas including audit, tax, legal, consultancy, climate change, human resources, risk, deals and many more.  They are really interested in employing graduates studying Humanities and in fact already do employ a number of QM Humanities alumni.

Ashley O’Connell, a recruiter at PwC, is coming to talk about why a global business such as PwC is interested in you, what skills do you have that are valuable to a business like theirs, what kind of opportunities exist, why these are good roles for Humanities students, what they look for in students, what kind of activities they value that you get involved in and how Humanities students can do well in recruitment.

Ashley is flying over from the Channel Islands and will talk about opportunities in both London and the Channel Islands including, graduate jobs, summer internships and insight programmes.  N.B. There are still vacancies for 2020 graduates to start in the Channel Islands this summer.

If you are curious as to what you have to offer a big business operating in any sector, this is a great chance to understand how to market your degree in a way that makes you relevant and to get top tips and insights from a business recruiter.  

Book here

PASS (Peer-Assisted Study Support) in the School of English and Drama

Finding deadlines and time-management overwhelming? Requiring academic support and guidance from undergraduate students? PASS is here to help!

PASS (Peer-Assisted Study Support) is a mentoring scheme which is run by students for students, specifically first-year students who have a keen interest in gaining academic advice from upper-year undergraduate students. PASS is firmly established in 14 departments at Queen Mary, including the English and Drama department. Mentors at PASS offer invaluable and comprehensive help to students, which has proven to benefit students moving onto their final years at university. 

For English PASS, most of the sessions which run on a weekly basis are orientated around upcoming assignments and assisting students with queries related to academia. I think this scheme is a great opportunity for first-year students to consolidate their learning by discussing their queries or interests. 

For more information about PASS feel free to email the links below: 

Samrawit Elias (English PASS student organiser)

s.elias@hss17.qmul.ac.uk

Lydia (PASS Drama Student Organiser)

l.m.d.hallam@hss17.qmul.ac.uk  

Interview: Dominic Johnson – Professor of Performance and Visual Culture at QMUL

Dominic Johnson is a Professor of Performance and Visual Culture in our department of Drama. In his profile below, he discusses his research which engages with LGBTQIA+ histories and practices, his work with living artists and his connection with the Pathology Museum.

How long have you worked at Queen Mary?

I’ve been at Queen Mary as a permanent member of staff since 2006. I worked here for a year before that whilst I was finishing my PhD at the Courtauld Institute of Art on the artist Jack Smith, who was a pioneer in queer theatre and performance art in New York in the 60s and 70s.

Could you tell us about your involvement in LGBT+ History month?

My research engages with LGBTQIA+ histories and practices. I’ve been documenting and historicising the relationship between performance and visual culture and sexual practices and sexual identities. I’ve been looking at artists who identify as LGBTQIA+ and whose work is critical to histories of sexuality and sexual practices.  An example of this is working on an artist who uses S&M practices in his work and thinking about the ethics and politics of trafficking a sexual practice into a performance.

I’ve also examined how representations of sexual practices invite contact with the law. For example, in my book, Unlimited Action: The Performance of Extremity in the 1970s, there is a chapter on Genesis P-Orridge who was arrested and convicted for indecency for producing and disseminating collages featuring the Queen and commercially-produced pornography.

Describe your average day/week

I teach the bulk of the week so I am busy with my students. I set up and convene the MA Live Art and I also run postgraduate taught programmes in Drama.

I also do research, which might include working directly with artists for example through studio visits, as well as work in archives and arts organisations. I’m a co-founder of the Sexual Cultures Research Group and we have put on some really exciting events. I’m also on the board of directors of the Live Art Development Agency.

In July I’ll be taking over as Head of Drama, so that will be a big change.

What’s the best thing about your job?

I enjoy working with students, especially the MA students as they really focus in on their aspirations. Teaching works best when it is an active co-creation of knowledge. When a class goes well, you go in and propose something you haven’t fully articulated and through the process of presenting and discussing it, something profound might come about.

I feel really privileged as a researcher as I get to work with and spend time with artists. For example, I recently worked with the artist Skip Arnold in Marseilles. It was really exciting to spend time with an artist who has been making important work for a really long time and to collaborate together: we ended up organising an event together in London at the Live Art Development Agency – I’m also publishing a journal article on his work later this year. I find that exciting, thrilling and joyful. I’ve had similar encounters with a lot of different artists and I get to see performances all around the world: I recently went on research trips to Mexico City, Los Angeles and Tokyo.

What do you see as your role in helping the University achieve its Strategy 2030?

The key strategies in, but also around, the published one have to be about continuing to increase Widening Participation. Universities such as this one need to encourage diversity – especially in terms of race and ability – amongst its staff and students. The other strategy I had a hand in shaping was the Arts and Culture Strategy, which runs until 2022 and is about encouraging wellbeing through the arts, enabling access to the arts, and how it enhances life for all students – and not just those studying courses in the arts and humanities.

What’s your favourite place on any of our campuses?

My favourite place is the Pathology Museum. I’ve done a few events with Carla Valentine, the Assistant Curator, including giving a lecture, and taking students there on a second year drama module to learn about the archives. I’ve been working with the Queen Mary archives to acquire live art collections. We have recently acquired archives for Ian Hinchliffe and Jon John. Jon John’s archive includes huge amounts of blood-covered canvases, piercing instruments, and other surprising materials that remind me of  the specialist artefacts in the Pathology Museum.

If you could tell a prospective student one thing about Queen Mary, what would it be?

It’s in the East End and that is really crucial. It is such a rich and diverse environment. Everything is on our doorstep, especially in terms of performance and live art. You can go to the Whitechapel Gallery down the road and access gems such as Live Art Development Agency in Bethnal Green, Toynbee Studios in Aldgate, and Acme Studios across the Mile End Park.

Do you have any unusual hobbies, pastimes outside of work?

I box at a gym called Blok in Clapton twice a week. I’ve been boxing for a couple of years. I just went to a class one day and totally loved it and I feel like it’s great to do a form of exercise where you are constantly learning – at the same time it clears your mind so intensely of all the things I otherwise have to worry about. It feels deeply primal.

Who would you invite to your dream dinner party?

I published a book in 2015 called The Art of Living which included long interviews with 14 artists or groups. I would invite them because the conversations I had with them were totally thrilling and enjoyable. Three of them have passed away since – each of them were friends – so it would be really nice to talk to them again.

This interview was originally published on our staff website Connected.

QMUL app | SED Social Media | 3 things to do to boss 2020

We’re so excited to welcome students, staff and friends to the School of English and Drama (SED).

Here’s a quick reminder of some easy ways how to connect with us online and a bonus 3 things to do this weekend:

QMUL APP

QMUL APP

The QMUL app is a good way to access all QMUL systems in one place including timetables, campus maps, email, QMPlus and key information.

Also if you’re looking for a way to read email use the OUTLOOK app (Apple/Android) and your username@qmul.ac.uk to login.

SOCIAL MEDIA

insta

3 THINGS TO START 2020 WITH A BANG!

Constellations
  1. Winter Lights 2020: You have one week left to see a mesmerising free festival of outdoor light art in Canary Wharf – 10 minute bus from QMUL.
  2. See an Oscar nominee for £5 in our People’s Palace Great HallDavid Strathairn (Good Night and Good Luck; Lincoln) presents a unique performance for Holocaust Memorial Day.
  3. See a free epic CLIMATE CHANGE art exhibition at Mile End Arts Pavilion: The exhibition will showcase the work of emerging artists and designers alongside protest artefacts, exploring the immediate challenges of the climate crisis and beyond, to the new way of living. Throughout the exhibition there will be a range of associated events, talks and workshops from organisations such as Women’s Environmental Network, Client Earth and Extinction Rebellion as well as from featured artists.

Funding Information for PhD study in 2020

Here’s the latest information on applying for funding for a PhD to start in 2020/21.

London Arts and Humanities Partnership (LAHP)

Applicants who wish to be considered for an AHRC-funded studentship must apply directly to the London Arts and Humanities Partnership (LAHP). The deadline for applications to LAHP is January 31.. Only home and EU applicants are eligible to apply for AHRC funding.

Candidates who apply to Queen Mary before 19 January 2020 will automatically be entered for the Queen Mary Principal’s Studentships (QMPS). Home, EU and international applicants are eligible for the QMPS scheme.

BAME Studentships for UK/EU candidates

We encourage applicants from BAME (Black, Asian, and Minority Ethnic) groups who have been previously under-represented in this process.

For 2020 entry, the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences will be offering two fully funded doctoral studentships (tuition fees and stipend of £17,009 per year, or £8,505 part-time) to UK or EU applicants from a BAME background. Awards are tenable for up to three years. Applications will also be considered from students who are currently in the first year of a full-time PhD programme, or the first two years of a part-time programme.

To be eligible to apply for these studentships you must be UK or EU permanent residents from a BAME background, and eligible to pay home/EU student fees.

Candidates for the BAME studentships must make an additional application to be considered for these awards. This will consist of:

  1. Your ID number from your application to a PhD programme at QMUL
  2. Diversity monitoring information (via a questionnaire)
  3. A short statement of no more than 500 words detailing the challenges you have experienced pursuing your research.

All these elements should be entered or uploaded to an online application tool administered by QMUL’s Doctoral College, by 1700 on 19 January 2020.

What can you do with a Drama degree?

Studying Drama might not seem like the obvious choice to start a sustainable career. But don’t worry the skills you can develop with a Drama degree are priceless and can help you to get into a career you love.

Skills you will develop


1. Creativity: Develop your creative side as you come up with ideas, arguments and projects while you study with us. Useful for: problem-solving, leading projects, researching new topics.

2. Critical Thinking & Writing: Make informed arguments verbally and in writing with skill. Useful for: analysis of text and data in many career areas, writing reports, writing copy for advertising, creating content. Useful for becoming: a lawyer, journalist, entrepreneur.

3. Confidence: Build assertiveness and stand up for what you believe in through the confidence our courses can give you. Useful for: public speaking, acting/performing, presenting ideas in any job.

4. Understanding Social Justice & Cultural History: Theatre and performance doesn’t exist in a vacuum and can be used for activism, education and heath. Useful for: working in care, NGOs, health and education settings such as been a drama teacher.

5. Teamwork & Project Management: Our courses feature collaborative working practices and lots of independent work so you can practice creating your own projects and research ideas with the support of your peers and our tutors. Useful for: creating a theatre company, directing, developing scripts and ideas and managing people.

Careers you can do

Alumni 3 x 3: From left to right (from top left): MEGANDALEX, Dushant Patel, Ema Boswood, Figs in Wigs, Moa Johansson, Raj Ghatak, Red Cape Black Cape, Edie Edmundson and Sh*t Theatre.

Here are 5 stories about what some of our Drama graduates have gone on to do:

1. ARTISTIC DIRECTOR & CEO – Liza Vallance set up and runs Studio 3 Arts which has pioneered 30 years of socially-engaged, co-created art in Barking and Dagenham.

2. THEATRE PRODUCER – Karl Taylor works as an independent producer for top alternative theatre legends including Scottee, Lucy McCormick and many more.

3. TECHNICAL MANAGER – James Dawson works for innovative warehouse performance space The Yard Theatre in Hackney Wick.

4. SOCIAL MEDIA – Anastasia Nicholl works on Brand Partnerships for TikTok.

5. USER EXPERIENCE DESIGNER AND EXPERIENCE STRATEGIST Rochelle Dancel has worked with Diageo (Malts), Disney, The Economist, Emirates Airline, Jack Daniel’s, Kellogg’s, Knight Frank, Kozel, Miller Genuine Draft, McDonald’s, MTV, National Rail, The National Trust, NHS BSA, Volkswagen and more.

Next steps


20 things to look forward to in 2020

Here’s 20 things (in no particular order) that are happening in 2020 in the School of English and Drama at Queen Mary University of London

  1. Aoife Monks (Drama) becomes the Arts and Culture Lead for QMUL in 2020.
  2. Caoimhe McAvinchey (Drama) has been awarded AHRC grant funding to work on a project around Clean Break.
  3. Our new Head of School is Catherine Silverstone (Drama).
  4. QMUL English graduate and contributor to our Poetry module, Caleb Femi will publish his new book Poor in July 2020.
  5. The New English Programme Launches – Discover the new programme involves in this PDF.
  6. We welcome Dominic Johnson (Drama) as our new Head of Drama from July 2020.
  7. New Suite of MA Courses including MA English Literature: Modern and Contemporary and MA English Literature: Literature and Culture 1700-1900 .
  8. New module London Global runs for the first time in 2020.
  9. Drama in Education module is launched and led by Maggie Inchley working with schools.
  10. Joel Grossman (English) will be hosting a widening participation event aimed at young BAME+ men.
  11. Sarah Bartley joins the Drama Department.
  12. Swati Arora also joins the Drama Department.
  13. Patrick Flanery‘s The Ginger Child: On Family, Loss and Adoption is released on paperback on 6 February 2020.
  14. Show and Tell podcast platform continues on 5 February 2020.
  15. Careers events include an LGBT+ event (12 Feb), a Media Summit (19 Feb) and an event on Law Careers for non-Law students (13 Mar TBC).
  16. Jaclyn Rajsic is the co-organiser of Brut in New Troy, which takes place from 26-29 June.
  17. We will be at English Shared Futures conference from 26-28 June 2020.
  18. Nadia Valman (English) continues her Leverhulme Research fellowship to produce the first literary history of east London – the site where key national questions such as social mobility, immigration, and urban regeneration are repeatedly contested.
  19. We are launching our Higher Education Achievement Record Awards for Arts intern and Student publication to give students extra activities on their degree record.
  20. We welcome Eoin Bentick to our English department in January 2020.

Did we miss anything? Leave a comment below with your suggestions…

Student of the month: Rebecca Barton – BA (Hons) Drama

Meet our Student of the Month! Rebecca tells us about her time at SED so far

Irish lady moves to London and now, does not sound so Irish anymore.

Tell us about your time at QMUL. What have been your highlights?

By far, my time at QM has been made incredible by the people. I know that I have met people here who will be my friends for the rest of my life. And that’s something you always hear will happen at university and hope it’s true! I’m very glad it became true for me. And it’s not just the people themselves, it’s the way they inspire me as well. The art that is being made here, particularly in the sense of theatre, is something I have never been exposed to before.

How has your course at Queen Mary helped you to progress into the world outside? What’s next?

My course has helped me in a lot of ways. Before coming here, I definitely saw myself as a strict theatre maker but I know now that’s not the case! Performance art is a whole new kind of theatre in itself that I have been exposed to through the Drama degree at Queen Mary and a kind of theatre that I find so compelling and thought provoking!

Aside from course content what have been your favourite elements of the experience of studying here as a whole? (societies/friends/community/values)

Definitely the Queen Mary Theatre Company. QMTC has been the highlight of my whole first year. I’ve been involved in it since the first festival in September and basically haven’t slowed down since then! The theatre being made in QMTC and the standard of student written work being produced there is just astounding. And the welcomeness and friendships I have made inside of QMTC are going to stick with me for life.

Tell us about your life outside Queen Mary including any projects, ambitions or jobs you’ve had.

Well, I’ve been involved in a bit of theatre outside QM. I performed in ACT 2, which is the new title for the London Student Drama Festival. That was incredible, because I got to do some great work with theatre people outside of QM. Expand my horizons, shall we say. I also worked with a fantastic company called SHITE Productions, which was making a play in a day. And I am working as FOH staff for Jeff Wayne’s The War of the Worlds The Immersive Theatre Experience, also getting to be a standby for some of the acting roles. That opportunity has been an incredible one for me. There are so many opportunities for experiences in theatre outside QM – you just have go look!

What could be improved to enhance future students’ experience at Queen Mary?

I think less of a segregation between arts and sciences.

English and Drama Newsletter – November 2019

November is here and is packed with unmissable events including: Wasafiri’s 35th birthday events including:

Read on for more top events and news from English and Drama at QMUL.

STUDENT OF THE MONTH

Meet our student of the month Aishah Nekiwala (pictured above centre) who graduated this yearfrom BA English. Read Aishah’s story

Events

FEATURED – EVENTS AT DR JOHNSON’S HOUSE

Our very own Jerry Brotton (English Professor) has advised on London’s Theatre of the East a new exhibition by Dr Johnson’s House and The Arab British Centre. The accompanying events programme includes: London’s Theatre of The East: Artists in Conversation Thursday 14 November 7pm featuring our very own Jerry Brotton.Irene at Dr Johnson’s House: Thursday 21 November 7pm  featuring Pen Woods and our very own Drama students.

Read more about the events here

LISTINGS

Mojisola Adebayo presents STARS: A concept album for the stage
Thursday 7 November 2019, Homotopia – Liverpool

Told through one woman and a live DJ, with projected animation, STARS tells the story of a very… very old lady who goes into outer space… in search of her own orgasm. Isn’t that where all the orgasms go?A moving, sensitive yet funny, multi-sensory and transformative space odyssey to be made aesthetically accessible for all.

Also in the Homotopia Festival Split Britches: Retro(Per)Spective (with our very own Lois Weaver and Peggy Shaw) on 9 November and The Gloop Show by our graduate Oozing Gloop on Friday 8 November.

Reimagining Britain: Curating, Performing, Publishing, Reading
Friday 8 November 2019, QMUL
This one-day symposium will host a series of discussions about the current climate for artistic and cultural production in Britain. The four thematic strands are on English literature (in particular school and university curricula design), publishing, curating and performing.

An Island Full of Voices: Writing Britain Now – Wasafiri
Saturday 9 November 2019, British Library
Celebrate 35 years of Wasafiri the magazine of international contemporary writing with a day at British Library featuring writers including Bernadine Evaristo (2019 Booker Prize Winner) and Nikesh Shukla (The Good Immigrant editor and QMUL graduate).   

The Sexual Cultures Research Group at QMUL: Saleem Haddad
Tuesday 12 November 2019, ArtsTwo 3.20, QMUL

Saleem Haddad’s first novel, Guapa, published in 2016, was awarded a Stonewall Honour and won the 2017 Polari First Book Prize. His short stories have been published in a number of anthologies, including most recently in the Palestinian science fiction anthology “Palestine +100”. Haddad was also selected as one of the top 100 Global Thinkers of 2016 by Foreign Policy Magazine. His directorial debut, Marco, premiered in March 2019 and was nominated for the Iris Prize for Best British Short. He is currently based in Lisbon.Saleem will be in conversation with Nadia Atia (QMUL).

Stephanie Newell – Postcolonial Seminar with English PGRS – Public Lecture
Thursday 14 November 2019, 6-8pm, ArtsOne Lecture Theatre, QMUL

Stephanie Newell will present a public lecture called:’ ‘Dirty’ Films in Colonial West Africa: Audience Responses to Health Propaganda Movies, 1930s-1950s’.

East Side Story – Part of A Season of Bangla Drama
Saturday 16 November 2019, The Great Hall, QMUL

East meets west in this high octane dance-off with two titans from the dance world, IMD and Bolly Flex. This show fuses hip hop and Bollywood in four acts, The Greatest Bollywood Showman, The Real Avengers of the UK, The History of Hip Hop and Romeo and Juliet Remixed!

See the full Season of Bangla Drama Programme

SHATTERING THE GLASS CEILING
Wednesday 20 November, Grand Hall, Battersea Arts Centre

Exclusive tickets for QMUL students and friends, email: rsvp@bac.org.uk

We are Queens. And we don’t need you to crown us.’ Getting to the roots of intersections of race, class and gender and how they impact careers, for womxn in the media and creative industries. 

The Guardian, Queen Mary University of London, Battersea Arts Centre and Omnibus Theatre unite to bring the themes around race and exclusion brought to light in Nouveau Riché’s Queens of Sheba, into the world of work.From racism towards BAME+ people to the lack of role models in many high-profile industries, this debut collaboration aims to open up discussion around the issues and give you insight into the organisations who desperately need a more diverse workforce.

Show and Tell #10
Wednesday 27 November, 6-8pm, QMUL

Booking just opened!

The 10th edition includes some top guest speakers giving inspiring mini talks. Line up includes Neil Connolly (The Crystal Maze Experience), Nafisa Bakkar (Amaliah), Mzz Kimberley (Trans activist), Elliott Ajai-Ajagbe Daley (QMUL alumnus) and Moj Taylor (Comedian). Open to all.

Book your free ticket

Southall Black Sisters: Turning the Page
Saturday 30 November, QMUL

A literary conversation between two groups of BAME women – published writers responding creatively to the stories of the SBS support group.

English Postgraduate Research Seminar
14 and 28 November, QMUL

Join us for the next English Postgraduate research events from Stephanie Newell and Clare Barker.

Follow @QMEnglishPGRS on Twitter for booking links

BOOK AHEAD – DRAMA GRADUATE PERFORMANCES

Email us your event

News

Mojisola Adebayo (Drama lecturer) has been awarded a 33 month Fellowship at Potsdam University for ‘White Climate: Afriquia Theatre Literatures and Agri/cultural Practices’.

Shane Boyle (Drama lecturer) will present an event to celebrate Postdramatic Theatre and Form at the 20th anniversary symposium for Hans-Thies Lehmann’s Postdramatic Theatre. This symposium is called “Postdramatic Theatre Worldwide” on 22-23 November in Berlin at Akademie der Künste.Shane is also speaking at UC Berkeley at the conference “After Post-Marxism” on 13 December.

Bridget Escolme (Drama Professor) gave a talk ahead of the production of Funeral – The Tragedy of Hamlet in the Faroe Islands.

Figs in Wigs’ Rachel Porter (Drama graduate) has written a piece for Exeunt magazine called The Ickiness of Marketing Your Art ahead of their show Little Wimmin at Pleasance Theatre.

Maggie Inchley (Drama)and Dr Sylvan Baker will lead The Verbatim Formula team working with its young people co-researchers to share young people’s experiences with MSPs in the Scottish Parliament.

Follow the project on Twitter @VerbatimFormula

Aoife Monks (Drama)has curated a free exhibition called Costume at the National Theatre, which is now open until 27 June 2020. She will be hosting The Secret Lives of Costume: A Multi-Sensory Walk as part of Being Human Festival on 23 November.

Bill Schwarz (English Professor) has written a piece for Soundings on ‘Humbug!’: Boris Johnson, Brexit and English populism.

Catherine Silverstone (Drama Reader) will speak at “Protest: Remembering Derek Jarman”, a seminar at IMMA (Irish Museum of Modern Art), which coincides with the opening of the exhibition, Derek Jarman. The exhibition is a major retrospective of the work of acclaimed British artist and filmmaker Derek Jarman (1942-1994), marking 25 years since his death. This is the first time that the diverse strands of his practice will be brought together in over 20 years.

Barbara Taylor (English and History Professor) appeared at Mental Health and the Georgian World: The ‘Madness’ of George III on 5 November.
Lois Weaver (Drama Professor) has received a Centre for Public Engagement large grant for ‘Embodied Imagination: An Interactive Workshop for Stroke Survivors’. The project is a collaboration with Prof. Pat Healy (EECS) and Rosella Galindo (EECS) and together they will develop a series of interactive workshops for Stroke Support groups around England in partnership with the Stroke Association.  Follow us on InstagramWhilst we try our hardest to make sure listings are accurate we recommend contacting the event organiser or registering before attending as mistakes can be made and we apologise for these.

If you have any news or events for next month please reply to this email.

Unmissable English and Drama events in Semester 1 19/20

We have ground-breaking events galore in our first semester of the 2019/20 year. Please do join us for collaborations with Southall Black Sisters, The Guardian and many more in-house events.

Don’t forget to follow our research seminars English Postgraduate Research Seminar, QUORUM Drama Seminar and Queen Mary Centre for Eighteenth Century Studies for more events.

Monday 21 October

PANEL DISCUSSION: The Postcolonial Novel of Ideas


Jeanne-Marie Jackson-Awotwi (Johns Hopkins) & Rashmi Varma (Warwick)
Chair: Andrew van der Vlies (QMUL) present a panel discussion on ‘The Postcolonial Novel of Ideas’.

See more events in this series


Wednesday 23 October

Shattering the Glass Ceiling

Come and hear from leading Guardian journalists about the intersections of race, class and gender and how they impact careers in the media.


Thursday 31 October

Halloween Party with Daniel Oliver – BOOK Launch and Lo-fi Relaxed Rong Table Discussion

The event will include: discounted copies of the book, a chance to discuss its core topics (neurodiversity, awkwardness, audience participation) using Daniel’s clunkily conceived Rong Table format and due to the date, fully non-commital/over-committed Halloween dress code will be optional.


Friday 8 November

Reimagining Britain: Curating, Performing, Publishing, Reading

This one-day symposium will host a series of discussions about the current climate for artistic and cultural production in Britain. The four thematic strands are on English literature (in particular school and university curricula design), publishing, curating and performing. The event brings together experts and practitioners who will share their experience of how these areas of the arts may or may not be changing, especially given ongoing agendas around inclusivity, diversity and ‘decolonising’.

Speakers include: Aditi Anand, Charlie Brinkhurst-Cuff, Natasha Bucknor, Elizabeth Cooper, Corinne Fowler, Rachael Gilmour, Nadia Yahya Hafedh, Anthony Joseph, Danuta Kean, Madhu Krishnan, Sharmaine Lovegrove, Malachi McIntosh, Rachael Minott and Jeremy Poynting.

Discover more events in the Wasafiri 35 series here


Tuesday 12 November

The Sexual Cultures Research Group at QMUL: Saleem Haddad

Saleem Haddad was born in Kuwait City to an Iraqi-German mother and a Palestinian-Lebanese father. His first novel, Guapa, published in 2016, was awarded a Stonewall Honour and won the 2017 Polari First Book Prize. His short stories have been published in a number of anthologies, including most recently in the Palestinian science fiction anthology “Palestine +100”. Haddad was also selected as one of the top 100 Global Thinkers of 2016 by Foreign Policy Magazine. His directorial debut, Marco, premiered in March 2019 and was nominated for the Iris Prize for Best British Short. He is currently based in Lisbon.

Saleem will be in conversation with Nadia Atia (QMUL). There will be an opportunity to buy copies of Guapa, which Saleem is happy to sign on the day.

Tickets are free, but booking is essential.


Saturday 16 November

East Side Story

East meets west in this high octane dance-off with two titans from the dance world, IMD and Bolly Flex. This show fuses hip hop and Bollywood in four acts, The Greatest Bollywood Showman, The Real Avengers of the UK, The History of Hip Hop and Romeo and Juliet Remixed! Check out glittering examples of cinema’s great dance moves with breath-taking agility and dynamism at Queen Mary’s Great Hall. These tributes and stories use acrobatics and physical theatre and provide the perfect homecoming for both IMD’s Omar Ansah-Awuah and Bolly Flex’s Naz Choudhury to return to their east London roots. Special guest appearances will help ignite this energetic dance spectacular as a reminder that commonalities and differences between cultures can be celebrated in the most exhilarating ways!


Saturday 30 November

Turning the Page: Book Launch with Southall Black Sisters

A literary conversation between two groups of BAME women – published writers responding creatively to the stories of the SBS support group.

Launching an anthology of writings, Turning the Page, by the SBS Survivors’ Group

Southall Black Sisters ends its 40th anniversary year with a unique evening, crowning a year- long series of events to celebrate its survival and reflect on its history. The anthology represents an intimate engagement, a two-way literary conversation, between established writers and emotionally vulnerable women who have found relief in writing about their troubled lives.

The survivors’ group at Southall Black Sisters have spent six months writing their stories in the company of Rahila Gupta.

Jackie Kay, Moniza Alvi, Meena Kandasamy, Miss Yankey and Rahila Gupta have written new work in response to the stories written by the SBS women. Their new work will be published in the book and they will read from this and other work alongside the SBS women. Imtiaz Dharker will also be performing at this event.

Be uplifted! Break your hearts and recommit yourself to the cause during the 16 days of activism against violence against women.

Did we miss any events? Leave a comment below…

English and Drama Newsletter – October 2019

Welcome to October. We have some incredible events and news to share with you so please read on…

Picture: Meet our student of the month Şenay Camgöz from MA Live Art

Read Şenay’s post

Events

OCTOBER OPEN DAY

Undergraduate Open Day
Saturday 5 October 2019, 10am-3.30pm

From Werewolves to live art, taster sessions at our open day are a great chance to explore English and Drama at QMUL.

Book online

FEATURED

A Season of Bangla Drama
November 2019, Various venues in Tower Hamlets including QMUL

A Season of Bangla Drama is back in Tower Hamlets for another month-long festival of British-Bengali theatre. It is now in its 17th year and firmly established in the area’s cultural calendar and includes a magnificent performance of East Side Story in our very own Great Hall in The People’s Palace.

Download the Season brochure

LISTINGS

New Suns: A Feminist Literary Festival
Saturday 5 October 2019, Barbican

Nisha Ramayya is reading and speaking at New Suns which explores new and continuing debates in feminist approaches to technology. She will also be reading and speaking at: Exploring Poetry as Disruption (Sat 19 Oct – Southbank Centre)  States of the Body Produced by Love (Fri 25 Oct – ICA)

Solitude, Sociability and Insanity in the Nineteenth Century
Tuesday 8 October 2019, ArtsTwo 3.20, QMUL

In the first paper in our 2019/20 seminar series, Mark Lee from the University of Oxford explores devotional solitude through the lens of ‘religious insanity’ in the nineteenth century.

Philosophy as Therapy
Wednesday 9 October 2019, LSE

Our very own Molly Macdonald is on the panel for to discuss whether thinking philosophically can be a form of self-help.

Writing Our Way Home
Tuesday 15 October 2019, Free Word EC1

What role can literature play in combatting hostile environments? In a new and exciting collaboration between Wasafiri and London’s Free Word Centre, Roger Robinson, Winsome Pinnock, Inua Ellams and Bridget Minamore join forces for readings and debate on writing and resistance. 

Find out more

QUORUM Drama Research Seminar: Molly McPhee
Wednesday 16 October 2019, QMUL

Be sure to go to the next QUORUM entitled ‘Miasmatic Performance: Carceral Atmospherics in the Theatre of Clean Break’. Photo: Pests by Vivienne Franzmann. Photo by Jonathan Keenan.

English Postgraduate Research Seminar
17 and 31 October, QMUL

Join us for the next English Postgraduate research events from Patrick Flanery and Kirsty Rolfe.

Follow @QMEnglishPGRS on Twitter for booking links

Doing Dr Duckie’s Homemade Mutant Hope Machines
Tuesday 22 October 2019, Attenborough Centre, University of Sussex

Drama PhD Ben Walters unpacks the world-making approaches to performance, cabaret, culture and care for so-called ‘marginalised’ communities.

Book here

Children Behind Bars

Thursday 24 October 2019, 2.07, Bancroft Building, QMUL

Matthew Ingleby will be giving a paper entitled ‘The Child through the Railings’ at this event.

Matthew will also be hosting a free Children’s Bloomsbury Walking Tour as part of Bloomsbury Festival on 20 October.

The Occult
Wednesday 30 October 2019, LSE, WC2A

How does philosophy contend with the mysterious and the inexplicable? Can it really be logic all the way down, or might rationality stand on something a little spookier? Our very own Nisha Ramayya is on hand to discuss at the Forum for Philosophy.

WEAVE IT! – Exhibition
30 October – 6 November 2019, Stour Space

Decorating Dissidence, run by our very own Jade French and alumni Dr. Lottie Whalen, invite you to ‘WEAVE IT!’ an exhibition celebrating and challenging 100 years of the Bauhaus women’s weaving workshop.   This exhibition considers the legacies of crafting and weaving from modernism to the contemporary, exhibiting textile practitioners who respond in different ways to the Bauhaus and beyond.

The launch night on 1st November will see performances by Rasia Kabir and SED’s Julie Rose Bower, with DJs and drinks. 
ONGOING


Read the Room – Contemporary Poetry Reading Group
Every Wednesday (12-1pm) in the Yurt, St Benet’s Chaplaincy, QMUL

Join Read the Room every Wednesday (beginning 9 October) to gather together and fill the room with poetry. Each week we will read aloud work by a different poet or on a different theme, appreciating the culture of contemporary poetry and a collaborative environment.

Meet other poetry enthusiasts or casual readers, stay on top of poetry events, or just enjoy reading something new. Drop in or just come when you can, Read the Room aims to be an accessible space to have fun with poetry.

Sign up for updates

BOOK AHEAD

Frauke Requardt & Daniel Oliver
Dadderrs

5-6 November 2019, The Place

Daniel is dyspraxic and is too slow.
Frauke has ADHD and is too quick.
They are married and have kids.

Join the couple in the Meadowdrome, their fantastical escapist world. Together you will encounter awkwardly intimate interactive actions, strange dances, sweet and surreal songs, and other off-kilter “grown-up” activities.

This interactive show invites you to explore, converse and play within the neurodivergent realm Daniel and Frauke have created.

Find out more

Turning the Page
Saturday 30 November 2019, QMUL

Launching an anthology of writings, Turning the Page, by the SBS Survivors’ Group: A literary conversation between two groups of BAME women – published writers responding creatively to the stories of the SBS support group.

Email us your event

News

Mojisola Adebayo will be presenting The Interrogation of Sandra Bland at the University of Pittsburgh, USA, in October, culminating in a performance by a huge chorus of black / women-of-colour on stage.

Pragya Dhital joined the English department in September as a British Academy Postdoctoral Fellow, with a project on proscribed political pamphlets in colonial India. During the summer she had two articles published: “From ‘Imam ul-Hind’ to Azizul Hind: The ‘One Man Media House’ in Modern India”, South Asia: Journal of South Asian Studies, 42:3, 452-468, DOI: 10.1080/00856401.2019.1596778 “Media satyagraha in the broadcast age: underground literature and populist politics during the Indian internal emergency of 1975–1977”, Interventions: Journal of Postcolonial Studies, 21: 7, 942-958, DOI: 10.1080/1369801X.2019.1585908

Michael Hughes (Creative Writing Lecturer)’s book is reviewed by The New York Times: ‘Hughes’s story proceeds at a breakneck cinematic pace, full of booby traps, double agents and arias promising gruesome revenge.’ Read the full review here

Eleni Sophia (aka English student Sophia Hussain) has published her third book ‘This One’s For You’. The poetry collection is about encouraging young women about the importance of self-love and provides words of encouragement for those going through a tough time.

In July, both Khloe and Kourtney Kardashian shared her poem ‘Her Mindset’ from my first poetry book, ‘Good Morning to Goodnight’ on their Snapchat and Instagram stories.

Hari Marini (Research Student Support) has published her poetry collection 28 ΔΙΑΔΡΟΜΕΣ ΤΗΣ | 28 PATHS OF HER. It has been reviewed here.

Susheila Nasta (English Professor) is has edited a collection called Brave New Words: The Power of Writing Now (Out 7 November) an anthology of essays by 15 world writers to celebrate 35 years of Wasafiri but also channels the hot political topics of today. It features work from Bernardine Evaristo, Tabish Khair, Blake Morrison, Mukoma wa Ngugi, Marina Warner and many more.

Pathologies of Solitude project has been awarded a ‘Diversity and Inclusion’ grant by the Wellcome Trust (£21,192) for a project addressing solitude and loneliness as aspects of migrant and refugee experience.

The 18-month project is led by Akshi Singh, postdoctoral fellow on the ‘Pathologies of Solitude’ project, and Nisha Ramayya ( Creative Writing Lecturer at QMUL), and is partnered by Akwaaba, an anti-racist migrant befriending centre in East London.

The project will support six creative arts workshops to be held at
Akwaaba, facilitated by BME writers and other diverse artists. Its
results will be disseminated through zines made with workshop
participants, an exhibition and a public story-telling event.

People Palace Projects’Xingu Encounter has been nominated for a Times Higher Education award for ‘International Collaboration of the Year’. The project explores new ways to work with indigenous people in Brazil to preserve & protect their knowledge & culture.

Mahima Tyagi (English with Creative Writing student) has taken over the School of English and Drama Instagram.

Follow us for news and views from Mahima and our students

Ellen Wiles (English Teaching Fellow) curated and spoke at Asylum Stories: Fact, Fiction, Truth event at British Library.

Follow us on Instagram

Whilst we try our hardest to make sure listings are accurate we recommend contacting the event organiser or registering before attending as mistakes can be made and we apologise for these.

Student of the month: Şenay Camgöz – MA Live Art

Şenay Camgöz (MA Live Art) tells us about her work and highlights at QMUL…

www.senaycamgoz.co.uk

I am an artist and filmmaker developing my creative practice.

Tell us about your time at QMUL. What have been your highlights?

The highlight was a screening of my short film, ‘Introducing HALA’ at the Victoria and Albert Museum’s Friday Late event in April 2019.

How has your course at Queen Mary helped you to progress into the world outside? What’s next?

I am half way through my MA in Live Art and have already had the chance to share my work with a wider public. The practical support I have received at Queen Mary University has helped me to promote my work on social media networks. Through QMUL I had the chance to screen my work at a major national museum which has given me the confidence to seek opportunities to share my work more widely.

Aside from course content what have been your favourite elements of the experience of studying here as a whole? (societies/friends/community/values)

Practical workshops have been very useful, in particular, the DIY Life Skills workshop on using Photoshop.

Tell us about your life outside Queen Mary including any projects, ambitions or jobs you’ve had.

The essay writing I have been doing as part of my MA has inspired me to write more and I am currently taking part in a collaborative writing project with other arts and humanities students.

What could be improved to enhance future students’ experience at Queen Mary?

More practical workshops on how to approach institutions with a view to sharing work and advice on writing applications for residencies.

Meet our Teaching Associates and Teaching Fellows for 2019/20

We’ve just published staff profiles for our inspiring English and Drama Teaching Associates and Teaching Fellows who are working with our students this year.

Click the buttons below to get to know them better and find out about their specialisms.

Drama Graduate Eloina Haynes presents two new shows: FISH DON’T BLEED and PORN FLAKES

“I’m Eloina Haines, I graduated from Drama at QM last year and I am now a performance artist/clown in London.

On 30 September, I am performing my solo show FISH DON’T BLEED and a scratch of a new performance I am making with another QM alumni, Emily Redpath, called Porn Flakes.

Here’s some information about the shows…

Step into a feminist world of grotesque celebration and throw a middle finger up to any ‘lady’ taboos.Queen Mary alumni, performance artist and clown, ELOINA, is at Camden People’s Theatre on 30th September with TWO NEW SHOWS.

Tickets available here: Big Bang | Camden People’s Theatre

FISH DON’T BLEED (created and performed by Eloina Haines, directed by alumni Brontë Kazim) and Porn Flakes (created and performed by alumni Eloina Haines and Emily Redpath).