Curating some of the best recent links across literature, philosophy, and the arts

Happy Halloween! This is the tenth in a weekly series that brings together the articles, reviews, interviews and miscellany that has caught my eye over the past seven days. Including: Zadie Smith on Beyoncé; Wittgenstein’s love of detective fiction; and a selection of ghoulish links to things that go bump in the night. Take a look, and feel free to share! (more…)


Design: Rhys Tranter

The London Beckett Seminar at the Institute of English Studies will bring together national and international scholars, researchers and postgraduates to discuss issues arising from the prose, theatre and poetry of Samuel Beckett that pertain to aspects of literary, philosophical and historical analysis with particular attention to translation studies, performance and practice, digital humanities and visual cultures. Inherently interdisciplinary in approach, the seminar will establish a vibrant research network for postgraduate students, early-career researchers, and established academics on a national and international level. (more…)


A secret charity auction with contributions from major artists and emerging talent

Art on a Postcard raises money for The Hepatitis C Trust through an annual secret postcard auction and ‘postcard lotteries’ which occur throughout the year. In recent years, work has been donated from established artists such as Peter Blake, Damien Hirst, Harland Miller, Gavin Turk, Rachel Howard, Gilbert and George, Polly Morgan, John Wragg RA, Stephen Chambers RA, Micheal Craig-Martin and Cecily Brown and emerging talent such as David Shillinglaw, Hayden Kays and Daisy Cook as well as urban artists, Ben Eine, Pure Evil and Inkie and photographers Dougie Wallace and Rankin. The project was founded by Gemma Peppé.

“I’m delighted to be part of this year’s The Hepatitis C Trust’s Art on a Postcard Secret Auction. While the secret auction democratises art, funds raised will help The Trust in its work towards ridding the county of hepatitis C, a killer disease which disproportionally affects an underprivileged community.”

— Grayson Perry

I caught up with some of this year’s artists to ask them about their involvement with the cause, and how they met the challenge set by the project. (more…)


Christopher John Müller on his new book and his English translation of Günther Anders, a contemporary of Adorno, Benjamin, and Arendt
Günther Anders
Günther Anders

How did you come to discover the work of Günther Anders?

I was alerted to a translated essay from the 1930s called the ‘Pathology of Freedom’, whilst writing my PhD thesis in 2012. I had never heard of its author, Günther Stern, and was captivated by the work, a brilliant existential analysis of the experience of freedom.

When looking up the author, I was surprised to learn that he was connected to canonical authors and thinkers I liked to study – Stern (who assumed the pseudonym Anders) was the first husband of Hannah Arendt, a cousin of Walter Benjamin, a student of Husserl and Heidegger, friends with Ernst Bloch and Herbert Marcuse, and connected to Berthold Brecht, Georg Lukács, Literary Modernists, the Frankfurt School thinkers – the list goes on and on and on. (more…)


Lectures, panels, tributes and exhibitions hosted by the University of Reading • 2-5 November 2016
Samuel Beckett. Photograph: John Minihan
The University of Reading is hosting a series of exciting events next week that welcomes both academics and members of the general public. The ‘Beckett Week’ begins on Wednesday 2 November, when actress Lisa Dwan will deliver The Billie Whitelaw Lecture and help to open an exhibition celebrating Whitelaw’s work. Thursday and Friday brings a rich selection of panels exploring Samuel Beckett’s engagement with the political; keynote speakers include Matthew Feldman, Elizabeth Barry and Daniela Caselli. And the week will conclude on a poignant note on Saturday, when Beckett’s authorized biographer James Knowlson and others will pay tribute to the renowned Beckett scholar Mary Bryden. To attend any or all of these events, follow the links below for details.