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Durham University

Department of English Studies

Event Archive

This is an archive of past events within the Department of English Studies. Please see our current events for forthcoming activities.

Some of our public events are recorded and are available as podcasts via our Research English At Durham blog.

Metal Music and Viroid Life

12th October 2020, 12:00 to 12:10, Online, Dr Sam Thomas

A new 10-minute video essay as part of Durham Book Festival 2020. This will be released live on 12th October, 12pm - 12.10pm, but can be viewed until 1st November.

The soundtrack to our new infected reality, and indeed to the broader effects of anthropogenic climate change, is already here. It is authentically global. It speaks to both the dark isolation of lockdown and the potent emotional connections that bind communities together. It is extraordinarily creative. And it is heavy.

In this piece Dr Sam Thomas argues that metal, more than any other form of popular/underground music, is profoundly concerned with viroid life and death — with contagion and trauma, with the breakdown of bodily, societal, and geographical boundaries.

New Ideas for the New Normal is a series of newly commissioned video essays from leading researchers and academics at Durham University. Each tenminute piece considers how we might live now in a post-pandemic world, offering hope and fresh new ideas across a range of disciplines.

Contact for more information about this event.

Related Links


Research in English At Durham (READ) blog showcasing the the literary research emerging from the Department of English Studies


We host a large number of conferences, lectures and seminars each year, many of them open to the public. Find out more on our Events page.


Many of our public lectures, seminars and conferences are recorded, and can be listened to as podcasts.

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