Elizabeth Bowen Symposium
Saturday Feb 29th 2020
Birkbeck, University of London
(Use Main entrance: Torrington Square, Bloomsbury, London, WC1E 7JL)
Timing: 9.30am to 4pm
Free entry: please register here
Programme (may be subject to change)

9.30 – 10.00 Coffee, tea and biscuits

10.00 – 10.10 Welcome (Nick Turner and Nicola Darwood)

10.10 – 10.50 Julia Parry

‘The Shadowy Third: Love, Letters and Elizabeth Bowen’

11.05 – 11.25 Farah Nada

‘Outside War’: The Evacuated Spaces of Elizabeth Bowen’s The Heat of the Day

11.25 – 11.40 Coffee break

11.40 – 12.20 Nick Turner

A reading of The Death of the Heart – a discussion (please do feel free to bring your own copy of the novel, but copies of the relevant pages will be supplied)

12.20 – 12.45 Eoin O’Callaghan

Bowen’s Court: a house, a book, a landscape.

12.45 – 1.00 The Bowen Society – an update and future plans

13.15 – 14.30 Lunch (self funded) – details provided on the day

14.30 onwards Meet outside Caffè Tropea (Russell Square)

Bowen’s London – a walk through Bloomsbury and Regent’s Park taking in locations associated with Bowen, her work and her circle. The walk will finish at 2 Clarence Terrace, the London home of Elizabeth Bowen from 1935 to 1952.

We are very grateful to Dr Olena Lytovka, the London Centre for Interdisciplinary Research, and the Research Institute for Art, Media and Performance at the University of Bedfordshire; without their support, today would not have been possible.

An annual commemorative Evensong for Elizabeth Bowen takes place every September in the church at Farahy, Co. Cork, Ireland, close to the site of Bowen’s Court, the writer’s ancestral home. Bowen is buried at Farahy, too. This year’s service takes place on Sunday September 22nd. The lecture is by Heather Bryant. It is uncertain if any of the committee can attend at the moment. This is not (yet) a Bowen Society event. However a passionate Bowen enthusiast from Japan is making the trip specially, and there may be some Bowen academics from Cork in attendance. Please email us, and we’ll post any more information we can share about times, getting to Farahy, etc.
“This year’s annual Elizabeth Bowen Commemoration was held in St Colman’s Church, Farahy on Sunday September 22. The guest speaker on the day was Professor Heather Corbally Bryant who is a Lecturer in the Writing Programme at Wellesley College, Massachusetts, USA. Professor Corbally Bryant is the author of How Will The Heart Endure, one of the most important studies of Bowen’s writings, and proved an eloquent and moving speaker. The theme of her lecture was the last year of Elizabeth Bowen’s life and, in particular, the final stages of her relationship with Charles Ritchie, who stayed with her right to the end and saw her through her final illness. Drawing on Sally Phipp’s memoir amongst other sources, Professor Corbally Bryant described Bowen’s funeral, and her very well received lecture had an added sense of poignancy as it was delivered in the place where Bowen was buried, surrounded by the beautiful ‘happy autumn fields’ of North Cork in full September sunlight.” Professor Eibhear Walshe, University College, Cork.