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Durham University

Department of English Studies

August 2015 Prospective Postgraduate Newsletter

Public lectures by postgraduates

Late Summer Lectures is a public outreach project organised by postgraduates, which is now running for its sixth year. This series of eight lectures showcases English PhD research to a wide public and academic audience.

Among other things, this year's topics will indulge in a literary history of chocolate, look back at Victorian Vikings, and consider the way Muslim authors have written about British life.

The lectures run every Wednesday from 19th August to 7th October; you are warmly invited to attend if you are in Durham before this time. Most of the lectures are recorded, with podcasts available to download via our blog.

Launch of our new Creative Writing MA

We're excited to have launched our new Creative Writing MA, which is taught by award-winning writers Dr Paul Batchelor and Dr Vidyan Ravinthiran.

This is an academically rigorous programme that will develop students’ knowledge of the practice of writing poetry and prose fiction. Students receive structured support through writing workshops and one-to-one tutorials in order to develop their own ideas. Students also study a broad range of literature from the 20th and 21st centuries, and produce new work in response.

Even if you are studying for a conventional MA or PhD, we still have a range of opportunities for you to unleash your creative talents. See our Creative Writing pages for some of the opportunties available to you as a student.


Curtis Runstedler is one of our current PhD students who is now reaching the end of his first year. In that time Curtis has been involved in all sorts of activities, from working as a Research Assistant on READ to co-organising our Late Summer Lecture Series.

Curtis says that one of the best things about Durham is that there is "always something to occupy and stimulate your mind here...I love how you can fly a barn owl, study in a cathedral library, read about Gildas and Grosseteste, attend a lecture on the Lindisfarne Gospels, and attend a medieval calligraphy workshop all in the same day."

Postgraduate inductions

If you are beginning your studies this October, you will find a range of University-wide and Departmental induction events to help you settle in. More information about induction will be available soon. For now, some key dates for your diaries are:

  • Research students, Faculty of Arts and Humanities induction: 5th October, 9.15-12.00, Kingsley Barrett Lecture Theatre, 4th Floor
  • Taught students, Departmental induction: 6th October, 10.00-11.30, Elvet Riverside 145