Durham University Keats Talk

English Literature students at The Sixth Form College, Solihull got a taste of university learning this week, as a professor from Durham University visited the College.

Professor Mark Sandy from Durham University delivered a university-style lecture to both first and second year A level English Literature students on the subject of Keats’ Narrative Poetry and Tragic Realisation. With Keats’ poetry forming an important part of the syllabus, this lecture was especially valuable with examinations fast approaching.

In the lecture, Professor Sandy referred to a number of Keats’ poems to make his points, including “La Belle Dame sans Merci”, “Lamia”, “The Eve of St Agnes” and “Isabella”. He explored the style in which Keats wrote in these poems, as well as the clever use of individual words and phrases to convey contradicting ideas.

Professor Sandy is an expert on Romantic literature and Co-Director of the University‚Äôs ‘Romantic Dialogues and Legacies’ research group. He is an advisory board member of the inter-disciplinary Centre for Death and Life Studies based in Durham and part of a national network on Romanticism and Ageing, involving Keele University, and the Universities of Lincoln and Nottingham. He is also a member of the Executive Committee of the British Association of Romantic Studies (BARS) and the current editor of the Review for BARS which is published twice yearly.

English teacher Elizabeth Davies commented:

“It was a privilege to have Professor Sandy visit the College. His lecture provided a fantastic insight into the work of Keats, which will significantly benefit the students with their upcoming exam. However, almost as important was that they were able to experience what a university lecture is like. They listened attentively and took detailed notes and I know they got a lot out of the lecture.”

Following this lecture, English Literature students will also get the opportunity to hear from another eminent professor, this time from the University of Warwick. Professor Paul Prescott will be visiting the College on 3 May to talk to students about Shakespeare’s tragedy “Othello”.

30 April 2018