Ilkley Literature Festival

The Ilkley Literature Festival returns from 29 September – 15 October featuring over 250 events.

As an official supporter of the Ilkley Literature Festival, academics from the University are giving talks throughout the following weeks. 

Tickets for the north’s largest literature festival are now on general sale on the website.

Some of the events include:

Stephen Coleman on Internet and Democracy (Event)

Can the Internet invigorate democracy? Internationally renowned academic, Stephen Coleman, Professor of Political Communication at the University argues that governments and global institutions have failed to democratise their ways of operating. Instead, online citizens are leading the way, developing practices that are revolutionising the exercise of political power. Democracy needs to be reinvented for the twenty-first century.

‘A Rose by Any Other Name…’ Translating Shakespeare: Dr Sameh Hanna (Event)

Borders, Boundaries and Partition

Shakespeare’s plays were first introduced to Egypt in the late nineteenth century. Dr Sameh Hanna of the University, investigates Arabic translations of Hamlet and Othello from the time, exploring whether Shakespeare’s work was used for border-crossing or boundarymaking between Egyptian/Arab and British cultures. His talk reveals the fascinating internal cultural and political dynamics of the Arab world.

Just Another Jihadi Jane: Tabish Khair in Conversation with John McLeod (Event)

Borders, Boundaries and Partition

Born in India and currently based in Leeds, the distinguished writer Tabish Khair has explored themes of conflict, xenophobia and survival in a series of award-winning books. His latest novel, Just Another Jihadi Jane, depicts two Yorkshire schoolgirls, Jamilla and Ameena, tempted by the allure of radicalisation and fundamentalism. Khair reads and discusses his work with Professor John McLeod.

London’s Triumph: Stephen Alford on Tudor London (Event)

Stephen Alford, Professor of Early Modern British History at the University, tells the story of Tudor London’s century of transformation from a modest European city to a centre of global endeavour. Painting a vivid picture of life in Elizabethan London, Alford shows how, through voyages, adventures and misadventures, its merchants began to discover the world far beyond Europe.

Branwell Brontë & Writing Under the Influence (Event)

Exploring Branwell Brontë

Author Michèle Roberts, Emeritus Professor of Creative Writing at the University of East Anglia, Ann Dinsdale, Principle Curator at the Brontë Parsonage, and John Whale, Professor of Romantic Literature at the University of Leeds, explore the impact of ‘writing under the influence’. How did alcohol and laudanum affect Branwell Brontë – and numerous other 19th century writers? What was the real impact on his creative work and his sisters’ lives?

Women on Paper, Men in Khaki (Event)

Women’s Writing and WWI

Books played a key role in the First World War and writing by women, of all kinds, gives us a vital insight into women’s thoughts and feelings during the conflict. Three leading experts, Professor Alison Fell (University of Leeds), Dr Angela K Smith (University of Plymouth) and Dr Jane Potter (Oxford Brookes University) open up an inspiring discussion on gender and war writing. They’ll be exploring everything from memoirs, diaries and creative non-fiction about the experience of women on the Eastern Front and in nursing, to the novels and serialised stories which sustained soldiers in the trenches and families at home.

Knit/Lit Drop in Workshop (Event)

FREE For families with children aged 8+ and adults

Learn to finger-knit and contribute to a collaborative Festival canopy, in a special workshop from the Yorkshire Year of the Textile team. Textile artists Elizabeth Gaston and Jane Scott will be joined by Malika Booker, who will weave musings and thoughts into a poem during this free drop-in event. All materials supplied.

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