Booking form: Henn Lecture 2023

Professor Daniel Wakelin FBA (Junior Research Fellow 2002–04)

Jeremy Griffiths Professor of Medieval English Palaeography at the University of Oxford and Fellow in English at St Hilda’s College, Oxford

English writing in 1473

5–7pm, Tuesday 21 November 2023

The McGrath Centre, St Catharine’s College

This talk will turn to the year 1473, when St Catharine’s was founded, to consider the state of English literature at that time—a topic befitting a College with a distinguished tradition in English studies. The early 1470s are not a well-known phase in English literary history, so this talk will first introduce the sorts of writing being done in English then; it will give a flavour of their format, form and content—from love letters to the first English printing. It will then explore different ways of considering literary life, by turning to book production and the history of reading, and by looking at everyday practical writing. Studying these aspects of literary history can, the talk will suggest, yield a different story of writing in English which will lead us to reflect in general terms whether and how we can tell a coherent story about people’s experiences in a past culture.

As part of the College's 550th anniversary celebrations, St Catharine's will be hosting several lectures open to students, staff, Fellows, alumni and the public. Recordings for each lecture will be published online so that anyone who was not able to attend has the opportunity to watch back at their leisure. 

Please complete the booking form below so that the organisers at St Catharine's can track numbers for this event.