Question: Why does Literature Outlive its Moment?

Date: 1st March 2018
Podcast: To follow

Dr. Ben Higgins (Lecturer at Lincoln College, Oxford)
Prof. Bernard O’Donoghue (Poet and Emeritus Fellow at Wadham College, Oxford)
Waqas Mirza (DPhil. Medieval & Modern Languages)

Chair: Irene Wang (MSt in History of Art & Visual Culture)
Organiser: Paul Stephens (DPhil in English)


Speaker Biographies:

Dr. Ben Higgins is a Lecturer in English Literature at Lincoln College, Oxford. His research interests are Shakespeare studies, the early modern book trade, the history of libraries and manuscript circulation networks. He was a doctoral researcher at Oxford’s English Faculty and his thesis provided the first full account of the consortium of five publishers who financed Shakespeare’s First Folio of 1623. He is currently writing a monograph based on his thesis, entitled ‘The Publishers of Shakespeare’s First Folio’. He is also a volume editor for the ‘Stationers’ Register Online’ project, which will provide scholars of the early modern period with an invaluable update to Edward Arber’s nineteenth-century transcription of the Stationers’ Register, and foster new modes of scholarship at the confluence of book history and literary criticism.

Prof. Bernard O’Donoghue is a poet, academic, Medievalist and literary critic. After graduating from Oxford University in Medieval English, he became a Reader and Lecturer in Medieval English at Magdalen College and later an Emeritus Fellow at Wadham College, where he taught Medieval English and Modern Irish Poetry. He has published six collections of poetry, including Gunpowder, winner of the 1995 Whitbread Prize for Poetry, and Farmers Cross which was shortlisted for the T. S. Eliot prize in 2011. He has also published a verse translation of Sir Gawain and the Green Knight and he is currently translating Piers Plowman for Faber. O’Donoghue is an editor of the distinguished Oxford Poets imprint of Carcanet Press, senior member of the Oxford University Poetry Society, a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature, and Honorary President of the Irish Literary Society.

Waqas Mirza is reading for a DPhil in Modern Languages. His research interests include twentieth-century French and English literature, representation of the mind and consciousness in the arts, literary bilingualism and self-translation. Mirza’s bilingualism naturally drove him towards the study of French and English literature in his hometown at the University of Geneva, Switzerland. He continued to work in Geneva as a teacher, a translator and a theatre reviewer before coming to Oxford to pursue his doctoral studies. His doctoral thesis explores an essential component of Beckett’s artistic process; namely, the act of translating his own works.

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