Sunday, 4 July 2010

In Praise of Newcastle Literary & Philosophical Society

The Newcastle Literary & Philosophical Society has been one of the recent 'In praise of...' contributions on the Guardian's editorial page. I did my own 'in praise of..' about the Society in a talk on Monday 28 June at the Consuming the Past: Library Resources for PGRs organised by postgraduate students at Newcastle, Northumbria and Durham Universities. Very well organised it enabled several postgraduates to share aspects of their research. There were also sessions on making good use of the British and Wellcome Libraries. The Conference opened with a review by Dr Matthew Grenby (Newcastle) of his researches into 18th and early 19th Century published books for children and who read them. Dr Wim Van Mierlo (London) spoke about the challenges of historical bibliography. The postgrads giving papers were Jamie McKinstry on Middle English Romance narratives, Rebecca Gill on South African Histories of Apartheid, Ellen Turner on Isabel Dick's Wild Orchard, and Emmanuoil Kalkanis on Sir William Hamilton and 18th Century art collecting. My talk took place at the Lit & Phil, and explored the interplay between a member controlled Society and Library and its mmbers anti-slavery and civic society activism. The talk was followed by a guided tour of the building. A Conference Facebook is at It includes photographs, including of me speaking.

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