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Durham University

Department of English Studies


We host a large number of conferences, lectures and seminars each year, many of them open to the public. Subscribe to our monthly North East Literature Events newsletter and we'll keep you posted. If you are a staff member or student and want to publicise your event, contact

Late Summer Lectures 2020

Trauma, Survival, and Remembering World War II

16th September 2020, 17:30 to 19:00, Online (Zoom), Prateeksha Pathak (Cardiff University) and Dr Rosemary Walters (Independent Scholar)

In this 75th anniversary year of VE Day, literature, museums and archives preserve memories of the events of the Second World War. In the fifth instalment of the Late Summer Lecture series, these papers will address trauma and survival in the context of the war in Cornish poetry and European museums.

Mediating Memory and Memorials: Analysis of Museums and Archives as Transcultural Spaces

Prateeksha Pathak (Cardiff University)

Museums and archives are not only essential to a nation's or region's politics of identity; they have also become major players in defining identities and shaping experiences across different cultures and spectrums. The three "experiential museums" considered in this lecture are the Monument to Murdered Jews of Europe in Berlin, the Imperial War Museums and the Museum of Modern Art in Berlin. The focus will be on the sensory experiments and environments of these museums.

Underneath the Water: Survivor's Guilt in the Poetry of Charles Causley

Dr Rosemary Walters (Independent Scholar)

The Cornish poet Charles Causley (1917-2003) served in the Navy in World War Two and his subsequent work reflects the two-fold trauma of his experience. His poems reveal how a childhood fear of water and the sea, combined with guilt at surviving when friends and comrades perished, produced a lifelong loneliness and awareness of mortality.

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