Lecture: Marina Warner, “Viral Spiral: Multiple Shape-shifting from Ovid to Covid”,  19 January 2023, 6.00pm GMT

UPDATE: The lecture has been rescheduled to 19 January 2023 due to the University and College Union national strike on 24 November 2022

The Centre for Comparative Literature at Goldsmiths, University of London, is delighted to announce the inaugural lecture in our Annual Lecture series: 

Marina Warner, “Viral Spiral: Multiple Shape-shifting from Ovid to Covid 

A group of metamorphoses in myths and legends features gods and in between creatures, who are not quite divine and not quite mortal either,  who can change their shape multiple times. For example, Mestra, the daughter of Erisychthon, is given this gift by the gods when her father sells her, and she is able to elude the clients he panders her to.

Marina Warner will explore stories of multiple transformations in and out of different bodies, and reflect on their significance in relation to today’s concerns with fluid identities and interspecies contact and contagion.

19 January, 6.00pm GMT (in person and online).

Attendance is free but booking is required.

Book here to attend IN PERSON (the Lecture will be in the Ian Gulland Lecture Theatre, Goldsmiths, New Cross, London SE14 6AD, and will be followed by drinks).

Book here to attend ONLINE.

Visit the Lecture’s webpage for more information and updates.

Marina Warner writes fiction and cultural history. Her award-winning books explore myths and fairy tales; they include From the Beast to the Blonde (1994) and Stranger Magic: Charmed States & The Arabian Nights (2011). She has published five novels and three collections of short stories, including Fly Away Home (2014). Her most recent book, Inventory of a Life Mislaid (2021) is an ‘unreliable memoir’ about her childhood in Egypt where her father opened a bookshop in 1947. She contributes regularly to the New York Review of Books and the London Review of Books and to artist’s catalogues, for example for Paula Rego’s retrospective at Tate Britain (2021). She is Professor of English and Creative Writing at Birkbeck College, a Distinguished Fellow of All Souls College, Oxford, and a Fellow of the British Academy.  In 2015, she was awarded the Holberg Prize in the Arts and Humanities, and in 2017 she was given a World Fantasy Lifetime Achievement Award. Since 2016, she has been working with the project www.storiesintransit.org in Palermo, Sicily, and is currently writing a book about the concept of Sanctuary. She lives in London.

If you are interested in this lecture, you may also be interested in the event series Sing in me, Muse: The Classical, the Critical, and the Creative, a series of talks, workshops, readings, discussions on the social, political and cultural relevance of the classics to our times.

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