SED Head of School Response: police killings and Black Lives Matter

Dear students studying in the School of English and Drama,

I’m writing to you in response to the recent police killings of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor in the USA and the assault on Belly Mujinga in London, and the feelings of anger, sadness, fear, and distress, among many others, across the USA, and here in the UK, including in our student and staff bodies.

On behalf of the School of English and Drama, I condemn these acts of violence and the structural and institutional racism that underpins them. I fully support the Black Lives Matter movement in challenging all forms of racism and committing to ensuring dignity, safety, liberty, and self-determination for Black, Asian, and other minority ethnic and global majority communities.

Structural and institutional racism is not confined to the USA but is very much present in the UK, and globally, and is a powerful force in preventing equal life opportunities for people of colour. The Covid-19 pandemic, for example, has both exposed and exacerbated the structural inequalities faced by many minorities, most significantly Black, Asian, and disabled people.

Universities have a key role to play in combatting racism and all forms of discrimination. I am committed to this work in the School of English and Drama. This involves continued acknowledgment and work to redress disadvantages experienced variously by our students and colleagues of colour. These manifest, for example, in differences in degree outcomes between our Black, Asian, and minority ethnic/global-majority students and white students, and significantly fewer colleagues of colour in senior leadership roles than white colleagues. It’s important, here, to acknowledge that we also have a majority white staff base in the School, and that many of us, myself included, have benefited from advantages and privileges accorded structurally, socially and culturally to white people, especially with respect to our educational and career development opportunities.

Affirming a commitment to equalities and anti-racist work is vital and action is more crucial still. We have been working to address inequalities in the School, especially in relation to race and ethnicity, through our Equality, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI) Committee, co-chaired by Zara Dinnen and myself; revisions to our curriculum; more extensive student support; a dedicated EDI student representative on our Staff Student Liaison Committees; and a commitment to equality in our research, for example. This is not the time, though, to be individually or collectively self-congratulatory or complacent. Through our work we know there is much more to be done, especially as we address the impact of Covid-19 and the decisions that we’re making for 2020-21 (and beyond) on staff and students.

We stand in solidarity with our students of colour. With my colleagues in the School Management Group, I affirm the School’s ongoing commitment to listening to students and working together across our School community, to address structural racism. This work is carried out though our department, School, Faculty and University governance structures, alongside informal conversations with, and between, staff and students. It is not the responsibility of our Black, Asian, and minority ethnic/global majority colleagues and students to bear the burden of this work. It is, rather, a collective endeavour, led by those of us entrusted with leadership positions.

For links to a wide range of excellent resources and donation funds, please visit QMSU’s Black Lives Matter webpage.

I welcome your comments and suggestions. Please be in touch at sed-information@qmul.ac.uk, or if you’d prefer to write to me directly, please email sed-hos@qmul.ac.uk.

In solidarity,

Catherine

Catherine Silverstone

Head of the School of English and Drama

Related blog posts

SED Final Years: Dissertation Hall of Fame – Win £25 Love2Shop Voucher with your Selfie or MEME #SEDHallofFame

To celebrate 🎉 our final year students handing in their final projects/dissertations we’re looking for your dissertation selfies 🤳 and memes 🤣.

You could win a £25 Love2Shop voucher for sharing your dissertation selfie or meme.

Give us the a pic with the story of your disso or make a gag-worthy MEME to win!

How to enter…

  1. Email us your picture or MEME, full name and caption to: sed-web@qmul.ac.uk
  2. Tag us @QMULSED on Instagram or Twitter with the hashtag #SEDHallofFame
  3. Message or post to our Facebook Page here

Entry closes on 3 July 2020 at 5pm. Our team will pick the winners on or shortly after 3 July so please get your entry in before then! There will be 2 winners one for selfie and one for meme. We will contact winners via email so keep an eye out on your inbox after 15 June.


Fahima Begum – BA English

Samiha Begum – BA English

Aysel Dilara Kasap- BA English with Creative Writing

Chloe Hocking – BA English

“I have had the most amazing time at QM over the last three years. I’ve met some soulmates. Had a few breakdowns. Hit my limit of daily replacement library cards. Spent £49000 on coffee. And had most of the happiest moments of my life. I know that this dissertation doesn’t sum up everything I’ve learnt and everything that I can do now (notably, go to the shop without having a panic attack). But it was definitely one of the hardest things I’ve ever done. And I’m proud of myself for doing it. A huge thank you to every lecturer, advisor, member of staff, and student for helping me through. From helping me choose a dissertation topic to making me a coffee with a smile. Also- to everyone who is still working on their dissertations- you can do this and you will do this. Remember not to compare your own academic achievements to other people’s because yours are just as brilliant and just as important. Okay I’m done now. Gonna go drink, eat, and watch Netflix… Until I have to start the next one.”

Hana Hussein – BA English with Creative Writing

“1 word down 9,999 to go”

Kirsten Murray – BA English

“Standing in the North Sea was not the original dissertation hand in photo I had in mind. Although I am currently some 300 miles from the bustling city of London, my time at Queen Mary has enhanced my passion for literature and developed my personal and academic confidence. The supportive SED staff have even inspired me to continue my studies at the University of Cambridge in a genre, Romanticism, I initially loathed when I arrived in London three years ago.”

Christian Richardson – BA English with Creative Writing

Christopher Smith – BA English

Eleni Sophia – BA English

View this post on Instagram

Yay! Three years & many matcha lattes later, I became a CEO, an author of three poetry collections and completed my dissertation 🙌🏼🥂 I’m so grateful for my time at Queen Mary; both, the @qmulsed & the enterprise department have helped me expand Perspective Press Global and I’m so thankful 🙌🏼 Anyone who’s starting university, please take each opportunity as it comes: go to events, make use of your careers departments — it doesn’t matter if you don’t know anybody, go alone! It can be scary but you never know what opportunities may rise ✨ I’ve also just hired my first employee & I’m super excited to see where my journey takes me 🌺 Thank you to everyone who’s purchased a copy of either book — I appreciate you all so much 💫 Lots of love, Eleni Sophia 🥂

A post shared by Perspective Press Global Ltd (@perspectivepressglobal) on

Demi Whitnell – BA English

AHRC Collaborative Doctoral Partnership training grant: ‘The Duchess of Botany: Mary Somerset, Jacob Bobart, and the Formation of the Oxford Botanic Garden’

The Duchess of Botany: Mary Somerset, Jacob Bobart, and the Formation of the Oxford Botanic Garden

Queen Mary University of London (QMUL) and the University of Oxford Botanic Garden and Arboretum (OBGA) are pleased to announce the availability of a fully funded doctoral grant from January 2021.

This studentship is funded for 4 years full time (or part-time equivalent). It directly complements attention to OBGA’s heritage in preparation for celebrating the Botanic Garden’s 400th anniversary in 2021 by exploring key aspects of its early history.

Research will examine the material and intellectual networks that supported the development of its plant collections and institutional structures during the later seventeenth century, with a particular focus on two intriguing figures: the elite female botanical collector, Mary Somerset, Duchess of Beaufort; and the Botanic Garden’s second superintendent, Jacob Bobart the younger.

Please note that an earlier recruitment process for this studentship (in February / March 2020) did not conclude due to the coronavirus pandemic and consequent UK lockdown. Previous applicants are eligible to re-apply without fear or favour.

A full description of the project objectives and application process is available in the Further Particulars.

This doctoral training grant is funded through the AHRC’s Collaborative Doctoral Partnership (CDP) scheme. Collaboration between a Higher Education Institution and a museum, library, archive, or heritage organisation is the essential feature of these doctoral training grants. The doctoral training grant is fully funded (living stipend and tuition fees) at UKRI rates and is subject to standard AHRC eligibility, rules, and guidance for the research students whom they fund and support. AHRC’s minimum stipend rate and indicative fees rate for 2020/21 are detailed on the UKRI website. This studentship also offers generous research expenses (including support for travel between QMUL and OBGA), specialist training, and access to shared working space at both institutions.

CDP doctoral training grants fund full-time studentships for 4 years (or part-time equivalent), of which 3 years 6 months are to be focused on the project and the remaining 6 months on career development activity. (There is an option to commute up to 3 months of the funded period for career development in order to finance approved training costs, in which case the duration of the studentship is reduced from 48 to 45 months). The award holder will be appropriately embedded for a period on this basis within the education team at OBGA, and will be encouraged to explore possible placements with external partners, including the Natural History Museum in London and University of Padua Botanic Garden.

This project will be jointly supervised by Dr Richard Coulton (QMUL) and Professor Simon Hiscock (OBGA). The student will be expected to spend time at both QMUL and OBGA, as well as becoming part of the wider cohort of CDP funded students across the UK.

Candidates with interests in the history of science, garden and landscape studies, material history, exchange networks, and the history of collections will be especially welcome, as will those with relevant historical interests in heritage management and museum studies. Potential candidates are encouraged to contact Dr Richard Coulton (r.x.coulton@qmul.ac.uk) and Professor Simon Hiscock (simon.hiscock@obg.ox.ac.uk) before preparing an application.

The successful candidate will commence their PhD in January 2021. They will hold their doctoral training grant in the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences at Queen Mary University of London, and will work in partnership with University of Oxford Botanic Garden and Arboretum.

Application deadline: 5pm on Friday 4 September, 2020

Interview date: TBC (late September / early October)

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.

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.

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…

Discover The Sacred Cave of Kamukuwaká with our very own Thiago Jesus from People’s Palace Projects

We caught up with Thiago Jesus to talk about a new project discovering the Sacred Cave of Kamulkuwaká as part of an ongoing project with the Xingu tribe.

Background info: In September 2018, as part of PPP’s The Challenge of the Xingu project, an expedition to the sacred cave of Kamukuwaká organised with members of the Wauja community, specialists from Factum Foundation and an independent team of Brazilian anthropologists, found its ancient petroglyphs had been systematically destroyed (https://peoplespalaceprojects.org.uk/en/kamukuwaka/). Chisel marks, a chipped surface and scattered fragments on the ground were all that was left.

The sacred cave of Kamukuwaká, an archaeological site sacred to the Wauja and to the 15 other communities living in the Xingu Indigenous Territory (Brazilian Amazon), was listed as a heritage site in 2010 by IPHAN (Brazil’s National Institute of Historic and Artistic Heritage). The destruction is likely to be a result of the ongoing tensions between indigenous and farming communities in the state of Mato Grosso.

Digitalisation and rematerialisation: In defiance of this tragedy, Factum Foundation’s team (http://www.factumfoundation.org/), employed high-resolution photogrammetry and LiDAR scanning to record the cave. Then, using cutting-edge 3D printing technologies and with reference to previous photographic documentation as well as the collective memory of the Wauja, a forensically accurate digital restoration of the rock carvings was carried out, resulting in a 1:1 facsimile of the entrance to the cave with all the petroglyphs, measuring 8x4x4m (http://www.factumfoundation.org/pag/1289/The-Sacred-Cave-of-Kamukuwak%C3%83)

The event: On the 18-19 October 2019, one year after the vandalism was discovered, Factum hosted a two-day event in their Madrid’s workshop to inaugurate the facsimile of the restored cave. It was unveiled by a leader of the Wauja community, Akari Waurá, oral historian and song carrier, and his son Yanamakakuma Waurá, alongside Takumã Kuikuro, filmmaker from the Kuikuro people, and Shirley Djukuma Krenak, leader of the Krenak people.

During the event, they explained the importance of the cave and its meaning for the preservation of indigenous cultures, and discussed ways in which the facsimile of the cave can best serve the indigenous communities in Brazil. The two-day event was co-produced in partnership with People’s Palace Projects and funded by Factum Foundation, Queen Mary University of London and Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC).

Publication: to mark the event, Factum has self-published the book The Sacred Cave of Kamukuwaká: the preservation of indigenous cultures in Brazil, which can be download here: https://www.dropbox.com/s/wndu82dpxjcnqlx/Kamukuwaka%20book_web.pdf?dl=0

Our very own Michèle Barrett works with David Lammy on Unremembered – Britain’s Forgotten War Heroes on Channel 4 on Sunday 10 November for Remembrance Day

Our very own Professor Michèle Barrett is the historical consultant on pioneering new documentary by David Lammy; to Unremembered – Britain’s Forgotten War Heroes.

Trailer

About the show

Politician David Lammy MP will learn about the Black African soldiers who gave their lives for Britain during the First World War.

To mark Remembrance Day 2019, Lammy will travel to Africa and see the mass burial sites for the untold heroes.

The hard-hitting documentary will also question the war graves commission for their decision to not individually memorialise countless Black African soldiers and porters.

Seeing the mass burials first-hand, Lammy considers the measures needed to be taken to give these soldiers the same dignity as the soldiers who were given gravestones regardless of background, rank or creed.

Call for Papers: Politics and Desire in a Decadent Age: 1860 to the Present

Politics and Desire in a Decadent Age: 1860 to the Present — a one-day symposium — Call for Proposals

Hosted by the Department of English and the Sexual Cultures Research Group

Queen Mary University of London

Friday 15 May 2020

Keynote Speaker: Dennis Denisoff (McFarlin Chair of English, University of Tulsa,

author of Aestheticism and Sexual Parody and Sexual Visuality from Literature to Film)

The symposium committee invites papers from a diverse range of disciplinary backgrounds, including literature, sexuality and gender studies, history, visual art, film, and environmental studies, that interpret any aspect of the symposium theme of ‘Politics and Desire in a Decadent Age’.

Topics may include (but are not limited to):

  • Urban sexual communities or conflicts
  • The sexual imagination and colonial decadence
  • Sexual identity in mass consumerism
  • Desires and the environmental humanities
  • Trans politics
  • Feminist fantasies
  • Desires and the decadent movement
  • Science and medicine of decadence
  • Gendered and erotic ecologies
  • ·ultural rot
  • Intersections of race, indigeneity, and gender
  • Ignored, invisible, and secreted desires
  • Decadent occultures

Proposals of up to 250 words for 15-minutes papers (along with a 100-word biographical note) should be submitted by 1 February 2020 to Catherine Maxwell: c.h.maxwell@qmul.ac.uk.  

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.

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.

Ali Campbell launches his new book: The Theatre of the Oppressed in Practice Today (Bloomsbury)

Ali Campbell launching his new book:

The Theatre of the Oppressed in Practice Today (Bloomsbury), which is an introduction to the work of his own teacher and mentor, the legendary Brazilian Director and founder of the Theatre of the Oppressed movement, Augusto Boal.

Seen here with one of Boal’s original Theatre Company Barbara Santos (holding Ali’s book). Ali in turn is holding her own which they are launching in parallel: Theatre of the Oppressed:  Roots and Wings (Kuringa).  The launch took the form of seminars and workshops in Rio de Janeiro at the headquarters of CTO Rio, Boal’s original company, alongside the devising of street theatre pieces and other interventions across the City protesting the draconian measures currently being proposed by the Bolsanaro Administration and impacting heavily on access to State funded Higher Education.

A similar event will happen as part of this year’s Season of Bangla Drama Festival, of which Ali is a co-Director with responsibility for CPD across the Festival’s 17 theatre companies and 6 venues, of which QMUL is one. The Festival begins on Friday 1st November.

School of English and Drama Takeover at the Edinburgh Fringe 2019

Lots of our students, alumni and staff use the Edinburgh Fringe to showcase and critique new performance work.

Queen Mary Theatre Company

This year QMTC have four shows heading up to the Edinburgh Festival Fringe. Here’s the blurb for all of the shows…

Auto-Nation by Cindy Kim

On the verge of a natural disaster, a prison guard is called into work and discovers a newcomer to the team – an Artificial Intelligence named Sally. When the city is evacuated, what happens to the prisoners?

If I Die On Mars by Clarice Montero

The final 24 candidates for The Mars Mission Programme have been observed for a month by the public in a reality TV show designed to choose the final four. The public have voted and the candidates are about to be sent off to Mars with no hope of return… as soon as the final confirmation is granted.

At This Stage by Megan Young

Have you ever loved a show so much that you wished you could kidnap all the actors, keep them in your basement and get them to perform it again for you? No? Just Rupert?

Rock’n’Roll Girls by Rachel Jermy and Ellie Calnan

Lola, Eleanor Rigby, Brown Sugar, Roxanne, and Monica – you may know their names, you may even remember singing them in the shower or at a party. What you probably don’t know is their stories. Neither do they, but they’re trying to figure it out.

Alumni at the Fringe

Just These Please

Georgie Jones is part of this highly acclaimed sketch troupe who are performing their new show ‘Suitable’ at the fringe.

The Cat’s The Thing

Marissa Landy is taking her comedy based on the reality of living with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder to the Space @ Surgeon’s Hall.

I, Am Dram

Hannah Maxwell channels her inner am dram in her new show at the fringe.

Sh!t Theatre Drink Rum with Expats

‘Celebrating their final year as Europeans, island monkeys Becca and Louise got invited to the 2018 European Capital of Culture in Malta. Lads on tour…Sh!t Theatre went to drink rum with Brits abroad but found mystery and murder in the fight to be European. Here it is, another excuse for the multi award-winning Sh!t Theatre to get drunk on stage. ‘

Kayla MacQuarrie: Traumatised

‘From an Essex-based, sad, weird kid to a less sad, trans, lesbian loudmouth. She’s grown up, gotten hurt and she’s still here and ready to share in her debut hour. Winner of the Best Comedy Show Award at the Brewery Fringe Festival.’

Criticism and Insight

Bechdel Theatre: BT talk gender and representation on stage and list shows that pass the Bechdel Test.

Check out their list of shows

The Sick of the Fringe: Lewis Church will be covering shows which deal with health at the fringe. Follow @TSOTF for the latest.

To Do List: Rupert Dannreuther from the admin team is a blogger with a mission to bring the offbeat underdogs to the fore at this year’s fringe.

Check out their 50 Unmissable shows list

Did we miss a show? Leave a comment…

British Academy Postdoctoral Fellowship Scheme 2019-20 – Applications Open

Early career researchers seeking support for their application to the British Academy Postdoctoral Fellowship scheme are invited to get in contact with us as soon as possible

Deadline for applications: midday on Wednesday 11 September 2019

The School of English and Drama invites early career researchers seeking support for their application to the British Academy Postdoctoral Fellowship scheme to get in touch by submitting:

(1) an explanation of the reason(s) for your choice of Queen Mary as the host institution (150 words maximum)

(2) an outline of your proposed programme of research (1,500 words maximum)

(3) details of your planned research outputs, e.g. monograph, journal article(s), book chapter(s), digital resources, other (please specify) (300 words maximum)

(4) a list of existing publications (1 page maximum)

(5) a CV (2 pages maximum)

Please submit the above documents to Dr Huw Marsh, Research Manager, sed-research@qmul.ac.uk, by no later than midday on Wednesday 11 September 2019. Please state ‘British Academy PDRF’ in the subject line.

Your application should demonstrate:

  • that you are eligible according to the BA’s criteria
  • the excellence of
    • your research track record;
    • your academic record;
    • the publishable research you propose, how you will structure, pursue, and complete it in the time frame, and its importance;
  • the relevance of QMUL SED to your research and vice versa;
  • who you would like as a mentor and why.

You are strongly encouraged, before submitting your application and time permitting, to find a mentor, provisionally agree their support, and get some feedback from them on a draft application.

Full scheme details will be available on or before 21 August 2019 and can be found on the British Academy website: http://www.britac.ac.uk/british-academy-postdoctoral-fellowships

All outline proposals will be considered by our Directors of Research and those that we give institutional support to will have approximately one month to finalise their online application, due on 16 October 2019

Dr Duckie and a string of alternative performance coming up from our grads at performance legend, Duckie’s club night

PhD candidate Ben Walters has recently hosted an event called Dr. Duckie at Royal Vauxhall Tavern to explain his work around the legendary performance company and his theory around the power of queer fun.

In addition to Ben’s research project we are excited to see the following students performing at the night…

  • Saturday 25 May: Rodent Decay
  • Saturday 8 June: Jo Hauge
  • Saturday 31 August: Joseph Schofield
  • Saturday 21 September: Alex Legge
  • Saturday 9 November: Figs in Wigs