#YSJBigSummerRead VOTING NOW OPEN!

VOTE HERE!

Every year “Words Matter” (the Literature Blog at York St John University) hosts the #YSJBigSummerRead, in which anyone who wants can join us in reading the same book! 

This year #YSJBigSummerRead will take place between  25 July – 5 September. Everyone is welcome to get involved. All you need to do is get the book and share your thoughts and experiences reading it on social media using #YSJBigSummerRead (and please do feel free to tag us directly using @YSJLIT). 

The texts below have been nominated by our followers, and now you are invited to vote for which one you’d most like to read this summer! This year’s #YSJBigSummerRead will then be announced on 21 July, giving you just enough time to grab a copy before the Read begins on 25 July. 

Taylor Jenkins Reid, Daisy Jones and The Six (2019)

Robert Adams, Plague Dogs (1977)

Alison Rumfitt, Tell Me I’m Worthless (2021)

Kiley Reid, Such a Fun Age (2019)

Yaa Gyasi, Homecoming (2016)

Kirsty Capes, Careless (2022)

Sylvia Plath, The Bell Jar (1963)

Hannah Bourne-Taylor, Fledgling (2022)

 

The Human Experience of War: Online lecture on 1st December

Literature staff and students are invited to hear a special online lecture by Dr Carla Barqueiro, who is based at Johns Hopkins University in the United States. Dr Barquerio will be talking about the human experience of war. The lecture will be held on Wednesday 1 December at 5pm. It is free and open to all. To register, please go to: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/human-experiences-of-war-tickets-209213572427?aff=Internal

Black History Month 2021 Event!

https://cdn.evbuc.com/images/146918139/14297485693/1/original.20210907-091915 (800×400)

Join us for a fascinating discussion on feminism, systemic racism, and identity with Sophie Williams, acclaimed author of Anti Racist Ally and Millennial Black. Sophie will be in joining our Associate Professor in Literature Dr Janine Bradbury in conversation to explore how we can make space for racially marginalised people and how small conversations can spark big change.

To book your free place for this online event click here.

About Sophie Williams

Sophie Williams is a TED Speaker, leading anti-racism advocate and author of Anti Racist Ally and Millennial Black.

She has written for publications such as The Guardian, Cosmopolitan and Elle as well as delivering sessions training for major organisations such as Apple, Sky, Cambridge University and UK Civil Service.

Prior to her writing career, she had a career in advertising, holding positions including Head of Production, Chief Operating Officer, and Chief Financial Officer. She is now a Manager at Netflix, leading Production Planning throughout EMEA.

Event: Words Matter Lecture 2021

man holding wind instrumentWe warmly invite you to join us for the Annual Words Matter English Literature lecture – it is free and open to students, staff, alumni, and members of the public!

Hamlet is, according to UNESCO, the most famous and most translated play in the world. This year, Dr Saffron Vickers Walkling introduces three contemporary global productions of Hamlet and explores how they appropriate Shakespeare’s play to speak to a seismic moment in history: 1989, the year that saw the ending of the Cold War. Lin Zhaohu’s Hamlet (1990/1995) from late communist China and Jan Klata’s H. (2004/2006) from post-communist Poland both hark back to the legacy of that moment of history, particularly its economic legacy. Additionally, Dr Vickers Walkling explores Sulayman Al Bassam’s The Al-Hamlet Summit (2002/2004) which is set in a non-specific country in the Arab world, over two decades later, as the West turned its gaze from the Cold War to the “War on Terror”. In true Hamlet style, each production holds “a mirror up” to their respective local tensions and ideological shifts in a rapidly changing world, and whilst viewed together combine to reflect the splintering and reconfiguring new world orders. Please do join us for what promises to be a fascinating discussion of Shakespeare’s most famous play.

To read more and book a place, click here

 

Hello and Welcome Back!

pink and yellow hello neon light

It is the start of a new semester here at York St John! If you’ve just joined us, welcome to our Words Matter Blog where you can read student writing and find out more about what is happening on the English Literature Programme. And if you are a returning student, welcome back! And if you are part of the broader YSJ community – a warm hello to you too.

We’re wishing you the happiest of starts to the academic year!

The Winner of the YSJ Big Summer Read 2021 is…

Ocean Vuong’s On Earth We’re Briefly Gorgeous (2019)

Find out more about this award-winning book from the acclaimed poet Ocean Vuong and listen to a sample here.

Over the Summer months we’ll be posting updates and links to materials both here on our blog and via Twitter (#YSJBigSummerRead2021).

Copies of the book are available in our campus library and regional libraries, and an audiobook is also available via Overdrive and other audiobook suppliers.

Reading together brings us together. We’d love for you to join in – whether you are a past, present, or prospective student, a member of staff, or part of our extended community – read the book and share your reflections using the hashtag above.

More to follow…in the meantime, here is an interview with the author on the key themes and ideas in the novel. Enjoy!

The Shortlist! The YSJ Big Summer Read 2021

Our Big Summer Read team have shortlisted the nominations for this year!  Thank you to all of you who nominated books. All of the suggestions were fantastic and we hope the shortlist reflects a wide variety of styles, forms, and experiences. The shortlist is:

 To cast your vote for the 2021 YSJ Big Summer Read click here.

To find out more about the YSJ Big Summer Read click here.

Voting closes at 23.45 on Friday 25th June 2020 and the winner will be announced here and on Twitter in early July.    

And to find out more about each of the shortlisted texts please read on….

Continue reading “The Shortlist! The YSJ Big Summer Read 2021”

Recognition for The English Literature Programme at the YSJU Awards 2021

This Friday evening (28th May 2021), York St John Students’ Union will be hosting the annual Student Union Awards Ceremony online! Not only was the English Literature programme nominated for Course of the Year but individual colleagues were also nominated for awards recognising their invaluable teaching and support.

Our Associate Head, Dr Anne-Marie Evans has been nominated for the Best Feedback and Most Support Supportive Staff Member awards. Dr Fraser Mann was nominated for his Inspirational Teaching.  And Dr Janine Bradbury was also nominated for Best Feedback.

Congratulations and good luck to all who have been nominated this year!

For more information on the awards and to book a place to attend, visit:  https://ysjsu.com/events/1197-su-awards-2021

It’s that time of year! Nominate a book for this year’s YSJ Big Summer Read 2021!

Every year the English Literature programme hosts the #YSJBigSummerRead, in which prospective students, current students, and our alumni – are invited to join staff across the University in all reading the same book over the summer.

Previous Big Summer Read selections include:

Previous Big Summer Reads

  • Candice Carty-Williams’ Queenie (Big Summer Read 2020)
  • Colson Whitehead’s The Underground Railroad (Big Summer Read 2019)
  • Anna Burns’ Milkman (Big Summer Read 2018)
  • Colm Tóibín’s The Testament of Mary (Big Summer Read 2017)

Which book would you like to nominate this year? We welcome nominations of short story collections, novels, and poetry collections.

Nominations close at 11pm on Monday 31st May, the shortlist will be announced in early June, followed by your votes for the YSJ Big Summer Read 2021!

To nominate a text click here.

PROGRAMME EVENT! English Literature Research Showcase (13 May 2021)

Photo of books
Photo by Janko Ferlič on Unsplash

You are warmly invited to come along and hear staff present short papers on their current research and chat about research during the time of lockdowns, remote working and endless zooming.

You will hear members of the team talk about magical women of Arthurian romance, representations of the architect in twentieth-century novels, Virginia Woolf’s representation of early eighteenth-century essayist Joseph Addison in her 1928 novel Orlando, the legacy of Andrea Levy, the challenges in guest editing a special edition journal, renovating My Beautiful Laundrette for the 21st Century, honesty in the work of C.H. Sisson, speculative genealogies, and the social value of writing about independent music space. All in one evening!

This range of subjects reflects the breadth of research within our fantastic programme. Our staff look forward to giving you a snapshot of their specialisms. We hope you’ll come along.

To book a place click here.

LGBT History Month Events!

There’s still time to catch some brilliant LGBT+ History Month activities in the area before the end of February!church covered in flagsEmily Balmer, our YSJSU LGBTQ+ Liberation Officer, has been sharing stories, advice and resources all month. Find all of her LGBT+ History Month posts on Facebook.

Jane Speck is in conversation with members of the YSJ LGBTQ+ community. In her latest video, Jane chats to Director of International and LGBT+ staff network chair, Phill Gray. Listen to his take on spirituality and religion in relation to LGBTQ+ issues as he reflects on his own journey. Catch Jane’s other conversations with Helen Sauntson and Saffron Vickers Walkling here.

And check out this brilliant graphic which tracks Google searches for popular LGBT+ figures. It was made by Pierre-Philippe – one of our Senior Lecturers in Mathematical Sciences and LGBT+ Staff Network steering group member.  

Outside Event:

 

Matthew Todd: LGBTQ+ Mental Health

YUSU LGBTQ+ and Matthew Todd

Friday 26 February, 6:00pm

Multi-award winning author Matthew Todd will join YUSU LGBTQ+ to give a talk on mental health within the LGBTQ+ community, followed by a Q&A session. Full details on the YUSU website.

 

 

All About Respect

Please see below a message from the All About Respect team about activities taking place this week.

Sexual Abuse and Sexual Violence Awareness Week 1st – 5th February

Sexual Abuse and Sexual Violence Awareness Week aims to highlight sexual violence and abuse in society. In 2021 we’re taking our campaign completely online, and having our conversations about sexual violence online to raise awareness that in terms of sexual violence #itsnotok. Continue reading “All About Respect”

LGBT+ History Month Events

York St John University proudly supports LGBT+ History Month in February; details of two forthcoming online events can be found below.
 
Jamie Windust sat cross legged with their hand on their head weating a bright red turtle neck jumper and patterned jacket. They wearing large red glasses with matching red lipstick. Jamie sits on a yellow chair with a plant in the background.

Jamie Windust in Conversation

6.00pm | Monday 15 February | Free 

Join author and model Jamie Windust and Dr Esther McIntosh, Associate Head of Religion, Politics and International Relations at York St John University, for a fun and frank evening of conversation about the key issues for the LGBT+ community in 2021.

Jamie will discuss their debut book, ‘In Their Shoes: Navigating Non-Binary Life’, and share their thoughts on topics ranging from the need for kindness in the LGBT+ community to the impact of Pride cancellations in 2020.

To book a ticket,  click here.

Beyond the Binary: Scientific Thinking about Sex 1900-1950

5.00pm | Tuesday 16 February | Free

On the left there is a pink female outline on the right there is a blue male outline. Between the two are a gradient of transformations between the two genders ranging from pink to blue. The image is sat against a navy background.

In the last decade, a growing number of young people identify as non-binary. Some governments are now considering recognition of a neutral gender in official documents. However trans and non binary people are still being stigmatised by the media. In these instances science is invoked to help us defend or challenge our understandings of gender and sex to enable systemic change. In this talk Dr Chiara Beccalossi (University of Lincoln) discusses how science increasingly sees gender and sex as a spectrum. 

To book a ticket, click here.