English and Drama Newsletter – April 2018

Welcome to the April edition of our English and Drama newsletter. Pictured above is English graduate Raifa Rafique who runs successful podcast Mostly Lit, and is featured in Stylist Magazine’s feature; The photo series dispelling the myth that Muslim women can’t be career-orientated.

Don’t Forget: Applications are open for our Masters Programmes in English and Drama. Get more information

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Summer School

Queen Mary Summer School 2018
London Performance Past and Present
16 July 2018 – 3 August 2018
QMUL – Mile End

We are offering our first ever summer school for students who want to get under the skin of London theatre and performance – past and present.Network
Creative Economy Networks: research, policy and exchange (UK-Brazil)
Tuesday 1 May, 9.30am-6pm
This event will bring together research, policy and industry perspectives to explore the role of exchange in creative economy businesses and its impact on the sector. Particular focus will be given to new research and policy drawn from recent UK-Brazil collaboration and exchanges led or facilitated by the British Council, Network and People’s Palace Projects. Keynote speakers are:

  • Sarah Drinkwater, Head of Campus London, Google for Entrepreneurs
  • Eduardo Saron, Director, Itaú Cultural (São Paulo, Brazil)


Literature and the philosophy of the comic
Literature and the philosophy of the comic
Friday 6 and Saturday 7 April
Graduate Centre GC601, QMUL – Mile End
A workshop organised by Katie Fleming (English) on literature and the comic including speakers:

  • Katie Fleming, “Comic Timing”
  • Huw Marsh (English), “Like a monkey with a miniature cymbal: Magnus Mills and the comedy of repetition”
  • Matthew Bevis, “Laughable Poetry”
  • Sara Crangle, “Mina Loy, satire, sentiment & sacrifice”
  • Jean-Michel Rabaté “Laughtears: Kafka & the birth of modernist laughter”

SALON LONDONS A L O N – LONDON: SUNDAY with Erín Moure and So Mayer
Sunday 8 April, 4pm, Free
The Brunswick Centre

Our very own Susan Rudy (English) invites you to the next S A L O N London event this Sunday. It will expore Queer and Feminist poetry and will feature a reading by Erin Moure, moderated by So Mayer.


WOW awards
Our very own Lois Weaver Wins WOW Women in Creative Industries Award
Professor Weaver’s win is in recognition of ‘four decades of commitment to work engaging the widest possible public in feminism and human rights through performance’. Lois was nominated in a hotly contested category, alongside author Kate Mosse and sculptor Rachel Whiteread. Read more

Drama student Daniella Harrison has won the National Student Drama Festival: Theatre Record Critics Award. She wins for her superb work in theatre journalism.

Show & Tell

Our new outreach project Show & Tell – is GO!
The project will feature a series of events with inspiring talks from influential and accessible people within academia and the creative industries. Events will be aimed at school and college students aged 16-18. If you’d like to get involved please email Charlie Pullen via: showandtell@qmul.ac.uk.

Jerry Brotton Bafta
Documentary featuring our very own Jerry Brotton (English) is nominated for a BAFTA
Jerry featured as a key talking head interviewee on Elizabeth I’s Secret Agents.

Shakespeare to remain according to a vote at The Great Shakespeare Debate
A marvelous evening of debate around whether we should ‘Kill Bill’ in the name of decolonisation took place on Tuesday 26 March and here are the results…

  • FOR (Killing Bill): 38%
  • AGAINST: 55%
  • Abstentions: 7%


Peopling the Palace(s)

1. Save the date for Peopling the Palace(s) festival which takes place from 11-17 June 2018. If you would like to get involved or find out more please email: peoplingthepalace2018@qmul.ac.uk

2. Ruth Anhert (English)’s research on network analysis of Tudor letters inspired this article on the Marvel Universe in Gizmodo.

3. PhD candidate Ruby Tuke (English) has written a piece on De Quincey and homelessness.
Read the full piece here

4. Call for Papers: Theatricality, Performance, and the State Read the full CfP here.

5. Don’t forget: The Wasafiri New Writing Prize is open for entries until 5pm on 13 July 2018.

English and Drama Newsletter – February 2018

Welcome to the February LOVE edition of our English and Drama newsletter.

Pictured above is our Writers@QMUL event last night with Patrick Flanery (Director of Creative Writing) and guest writer Anjali Joseph. Watch the Facebook live recording here.

Work with us: We’re looking for a new Lecturer in Creative Writing (0.5) – Closes 12 February Details



Postgraduate Open Evening
Wednesday 7 February, 16:30-19:30
Meet our staff, go on a campus tour and get a feel for our postgraduate offer in English and Drama. At 5pm we have a Q&A for MA Theatre and Performance, MA Live Art and MSc Creative Arts and Mental Health.

English and Drama Offer Holder Days 2018
Saturday 10 February, Saturday 10 March
and Wednesday 28 March

If you’ve got an offer and haven’t got an invite please let us know.


Atlantic Drift: Andrea Brady, Sophie Collins and John James
Monday 5 February
London Review Bookshop, Holborn
Andrea Brady (English) is reading at this event celebrating Atlantic Drift a new Poetry anthology.


Shakespeare Festival 2018
Until Wednesday 7 February
QMUL – Mile End

Don’t miss events still to come including a Twelfth Night screening, ‘Night of Mechanicals’ and a Pinter Platform.


Staging Atmospheres

Theatre in the Dark
Tuesday 6 – Friday 9 February
Battersea Arts Centre

To mark the 20th anniversary of Battersea Arts Centre’s Playing In The Dark season in 1998, and the launch of Theatre in the Dark: Shadow, Gloom and Blackout in Contemporary Theatre, a new book edited by our very own Martin Welton (Drama) and Adam Alston, join us and BAC for a week of Theatre In The Dark including a scratch night of new work.

14 February – 18 March 2018, 6pm
VAULT Festival, Waterloo
We are working with theatre makers RIFT to build fully responsive immersive environments for stories that  confront harassment, abuses of power and gender to live within.


Titus Andronicus at Barbican
Thursday 15 February, 6pm
Rich Mix, Shoreditch

One of our students is the curator of a new night of short artistic performances, which explores people’s firsts.


Wednesday 21 February, 18:30-20:30
QMUL – Mile End

The next RESEARCH / INTERRUPTED social. The group will be focusing on tactics we can share to support ourselves and each other in striking the balance between PhD research and personal mental health.


Jen Harvie
LADA Screens: Martin O’Brien – The Unwell (and Book Launch)
Thursday 26 February 2018, 7pm
Live Art Development Agency, Bethnal Green

A film screening of our very own Martin O’Brien’s zombie film and book launch of his new publication Survival of the Sickest, the art of Martin O’Brien.


The Great Yiddish Parade
Nadia Valman (English) has been shortlisted for a Public Engagement Award for ‘Animating east London’s immigrant history’ Her project is full of free, innovative activities designed to engage new audiences with east London’s long history of immigrant culture – including a smartphone app, a series of walking tours, schools workshops and a historical re-enactment, involving creative collaborations with two museums and three local secondary schools. She has also written an audio tour of London Hospital you can listen to and follow via your phone here.


Mojisola Adebayo

Mojisola Adebayo’s new show STARS and writing published: Mojisola (Drama) has just successfully completed her PhD entitled Afriquia Theatre: Creating Black Queer Ubuntu Through Performance supervised by Dr Catherine Silverstone with Dr Caoimhe McAvinchey and has recently started as a lecturer with us.Her work is included in Sista! a new ‘Anthology of writing by and about Same Gender Loving Women of African / Caribbean descent with a UK Connection’.Mojisola has won a grant from ACE for research and development of a new project STARS, a collaboration with DJ DeboA of Mix ‘n’ Sync. Read more in this blog post.



Caoimhe McAvinchey’s Phakama – Making Participatory Performance is coming out on 22 February through Bloomsbury.

Images of the manuscripts of William Godwin’s Political Justice and Caleb Williams are now available to view: on The Shelley-Godwin Archive , along with descriptive and contextual commentary. This is the fruit of a collaborative project led by Pamela Clemit (English), which brought together complementary expertise from Queen Mary University of London, the Victoria and Albert Museum, and Maryland Institute for Technology in the Humanities. The publication was launched at the V&A on 11 December 2017, at which three short talks were delivered by representatives of each of the collaborating institutions, introduced by the V&A’s Director, Tristram Hunt. The talks are available to read here


New research centre for Creative Economy: It is called Network and directed by Professor Morag Shiach (English). Tarek Virani is Deputy Director and Andre Piza has just started as Knowledge Exchange Manager.


Grants and research projects update: Pamela Clemit will be involved in the AHRC-funded ‘History in the Humanities and Social Sciences’ project, based in History. People’s Palace Projects and Martin Welton were both successful in their applications to the AHRC/EPSRC Research and Partnership Development call for the Next Generation of Immersive Experiences. Elyssa Livergant had success with HSS Collaboration funding for Making Spaces: Limehouse Town Hall.



1. Wasafiri’s Susheila Nasta has just launched the ‘Timeline of India in Britain’ at the India High Commission on Friday for Republic Day. Be sure to check out the free online resource here or read about it in this article in Hindustan Times.

2. Matthew Rubery (English) was interviewed for World Braille Day on Voice of Islam Radio in January. He was asked questions including ‘can you shed some light on how audio tapes help blind people?’ Listen here. Matt will also be running a Media History Seminar with Kate Flint on the ‘Technological History of Photography’ on 8 February (details here).

3. Wasafiri New Writing Prize Open for Entries: The prize was launched to support new writers, with no limits on age, gender, nationality or background. A winner will be chosen by our stellar line up of judges for each category: Fiction; Poetry; Life Writing. The three winners will be published by Wasafiri and receive a cash prize.

4. Thanks to our very own Claire Preston (English) for sharing this selection of Axolotl (Mexican Walking Fish) poetry in response to our call out for news.

We look forward to hearing your news and hopefully seeing you at an event soon.Please do let us know if you have news for our next newsletter due to be sent on Thursday 1 March 2018: sed-web@qmul.ac.uk.

English and Drama Newsletter – January 2018

Welcome to the NEW YEAR edition of our English and Drama newsletter.

Here’s a quick run down of what’s new for 2018:



Postgraduate Virtual Open Day
Wednesday 17 January, 12:00-18:00 GMT

Postgraduate Open Day
Wednesday 7 February, 16:30-19:30 GMT

English and Drama Offer Holder Days 2018
Saturday 10 February, Saturday 10 March and Wednesday 28 March


Offer Holder Day



Staging Atmospheres
Writers @QMUL: Anjali Joseph reading & in conversation
Wednesday 31 January, 5.30pm
QMUL – Mile End

In the second of our ongoing Writers @QMUL series, prize-winning novelist Anjali Joseph will read and be in conversation about her work. Joseph was born in Bombay, has taught English at the Sorbonne, and was Commissioning Editor for ELLE (India). Her first novel, Saraswati Park, won the Betty Trask Prize and Desmond Elliott Prize. Another Country, her second novel, was published in June 2012. A third novel, The Living, appeared in 2016.

Titus Andronicus at Barbican
Titus Andronicus at the Barbican Centre
Thursday 18 January 2018, 7.15pm

£4 Tickets available (exclusively for QM Shakespeare members)
We are also offering £6 tickets to non-members.

Must be purchased by Sunday 7th January from the SU website: www.qmsu.org/events/15240/10565/
For more info, please email qmshakespeare@hotmail.com

Jen Harvie
V&A/RCA Research Seminar: Jen Harvie
Thursday 25 January 2018, 5.15pm
RCA White City, Room GH109, Garden House

Our very own Jen Harvie will present her seminar ‘Designing Resistance to Adversarial Ageism in Caryl Churchill’s Escaped Alone and Split Britches’ Ruff’.
RSVP to hod@rca.ac.uk.


‘The Drill’ by Breach Theatre
5-17 February, 7pm
Battersea Arts Centre, London

MA Theatre and Performance Graduate Billy Barrett will be presenting his theatre company’s new show ‘The Drill’ at Battersea Arts Centre.


TED talk

Tiffany Watt Smith’s TED talk on the history of emotions was featured on the front page of TED.com in December 2017 and has had over 714,437 views as of 4 January 2018.

Cub Magazine

1. Keep your eyes peeled for the latest edition of CUB Magazine which will be available around campus in February! If you can’t wait til then, check out the CUB website (cubmagazine.co.uk) for new, weekly content. If you would like to contribute to CUB magazine and join a team of 54 students, please email editorcub@gmail.com or send a message on Facebook @cubmagazine.

Aslom Ullah

2. Our 2007 English alumnus Aslom Ullah (now an English teacher in Kuwait)‏ got in touch via Twitter and shared his hilarious and honest blast from the past video from his time at SED…we bet he is his students’ favourite teacher!
Watch Aslom’s video Teaching Shakespeare to Primary School Students

3. Don’t forget to catch our 2017 Drama graduates MEGANDALEX in their debut Bodies (broken 4 u) on 25 January 2018 at Camden People’s Theatre as part of the Calm Down Dear festival of innovative feminist performance.

4. It’s not too late to apply to present a 10 minute ‘theatre in the dark’ piece at a special Scratch Night at Battersea Arts Centre. Apply by 8 January. See the call out

English and Drama Newsletter – December 2017

Welcome to the festive edition of our English and Drama newsletter. The picture above is of our Drama graduates MEGANDALEX ahead of their show Bodies (broken 4 u) at Camden People’s Theatre in January.

Events in December


Offer Holder Day

English and Drama Offer Holder Day
Wednesday 13 December, 12:00-18:00, QMUL – Mile End

Our School of English and Drama Offer Holder Days include taster sessions and interviews for candidates selected for our Unconditional Offer Award.

Staging Atmospheres

Staging Atmospheres – Theatre and the Atmospheric Turn
Friday 8 and Saturday 9 December, all day, QMUL – Mile End

Conference organisers, Martin Welton and Penelope Woods, are keen to encourage dialogue amongst artists and academics across a range of disciplines beyond theatre and performance studies and internationally.

Selector Responder

Selector Responder: Sounding out the Archives
Friday 8 December 2017 19.00 – 21.30
Knowledge Centre, The British Library

Ten quick-fire responses to sound collections from the British Library and beyond, curated by our very own Drama lecturer Ella Finer.

William Godwin

RA Lates: Rrose Sélavy’s Dada Extravaganza | Saturday 9 December 2017 | 7-11.45pm

Our very own Dr. Benjamin Poore will be presenting ‘Estranging Objects: Fetish – Artwork – Freud’, exploring the unconscious forces shaping our encounters with surrealist objects. ‘ at this DaDa inspired Royal Academy lates event.

Digitising William Godwin’s Manuscripts

Monday 11 December, 17:30-19:30, V&A Museum
For the first time, the sole surviving manuscripts of Political Justice and Caleb Williams, by the anarchist philosopher William Godwin (1756-1836), will be digitised and made freely available on the Shelley-Godwin Archive. Celebrate this collaborative project announced in April 2017 by Queen Mary University of London (QMUL), the Victoria and Albert Museum (V&A), and Maryland Institute for Technology in the Humanities (MITH).

Negative Theatrics Event
Negative Theatrics: A Conversation with Writer and Director Julia Jarcho
Tuesday 12 December, 18:00-20:00, QMUL – Mile End
Join us for a reading and conversation with the Obie-award winning playwright and scholar Julia Jarcho – who will be in London for the UK-premiere of her play Grimly Handsome at the Royal Court Theatre.

John D'Agata Event
Writers @QMUL: John D’Agata reading & in conversation with Patrick Flanery

Friday 15 December, 18:00, Arts One Lecture Theatre , QMUL – Mile End
On 15 December at 6pm acclaimed essayist John D’Agata will be reading and in conversation with Patrick Flanery. D’Agata is the author of About a Mountain (2011) and The Lifespan of a Fact (2012) and is editor of Graywolf Press’s three-volume anthology series New History of the Essay.

Save the date for these events

  • Queen Mary Eighteenth-Century Studies Seminar 2017-18: Peter de Bolla on Distributional Concept Analysis (Tuesday 12 December). More info
  • Raphael Samuel Memorial Lecture 2017:
    Peter Burke: Two Diasporas: the place of exiles in the history of knowledge (Wednesday 13 December). RSVP here
  • Queen Mary Centre for Religion and Literature Seminars (Wednesdays from 24 January) and Conference (Friday 6 July). Download the programme


Scents and Sensibility

Catherine Maxwell’s new book Scents and Sensibility: Perfumes in Victorian Literary Culture is out now and was featured in an article on perfume in The Guardian here.

Nadia Valman’s The Great Yiddish Parade is covered on the inspiring local blog Spitalfields Life.

The new Queen Mary Arts and Culture strategy was launched in November. Read all about the event here.


The Mayor's Entrepreneur Competition 2017

1. Our students Charlotte Stockton and Adna Ahmed are working on the Mayor’s Entrepreneur Competition 2017. As well as a £20k prize for the winner to bring their idea to life, the competition can improve skills and future employability, and offers free mentoring and workshops from business experts (and there is the chance for students to pitch their ideas Dragon Den’s style at City Hall).

2. The story of Joseph Merrick re-told in an immersive Whitechapel tour app with a script written by our very own Nadia Valman.

3. Discover the academic side of one of our favourite terms; Schadenfreude, in this article by our very own Shahidha Bari and why not listen to her round up of the Being Human Festival on BBC Radio 3 here.

4. Listen to the history of QMUL and The People’s Palace in this interesting podcast here. The original Mile End site hosted a vibrant calendar of social events and facilities, including swimming baths, concerts and a winter garden enclosed in glass.