Monthly Archives: September 2018

Emily Cook

Emily Cook appears on BBC Breakfast Show

The Department of English Language and Linguistics Alumna Emily Cook, a graduate with a BA (Hons) English Language and Linguistics and MA in Linguistics, and journalist and features editor for Doctor Who Magazine, featured on BBC Radio’s Chris Evans’ Radio 2 Breakfast Show this week in a conversation about the brand new Doctor Who series which will start in October. Emily, who spent time on the set of the new series, spoke to Chris about some of the exciting details regarding the new series, including interviewing the stars, and attending the preview premier of the first episode in Sheffield on Monday night.

Emily enthused about the new series, commenting that Jodie Whittaker embodies all the qualities a good ‘Doctor’ should have. She also discussed how it is the perfect time for new viewers to engage with Doctor Who.

Speaking to Chris Evans, Emily explained how studying the English Language & Linguistics modules such as ‘Writing in the Media’ helped her in the development of her career, and emphasised the important role it has played in securing her ‘dream job’.

To listen to the full interview, please see here:


Nostalgia podcast with Andrew Hass

The latest episode of podcast series on ‘Nostalgia’, hosted by Dr Chris Deacy, Reader in Theology and Religious Studies in the Department of Religious Studies, has just been released.

In this week’s interview, Chris interviews Andrew Hass, Reader in Religious Studies at the University of Stirling. Originally from Canada, Andrew discusses the concepts of home and belongingness and how we identify ourselves in a global context (e.g. ‘a citizen of the world’), prompting questions of nostalgia for one’s homeland. In Andrew’s case, Scotland is a place that intellectually formed him.

In the interview, Andrew also identifies the extent to which popular music evokes memories, such that we are immediately drawn back to a certain era through the simple listening to a song, and how it can bind people together in a way few other media are able to do. Jazz was a particularly formative part of his young adulthood, followed by progressive rock and then classical music. Andrew’s latest project is centred on the relationship between music, spirituality and religion and culture.

Andrew introduces the concept of ‘superficial nostalgia’ and outlines how, when there’s chaos around, the calming effect of music can be requisite to one’s sanity. We learn why Andrew grew up listening to so much Joni Mitchell in whose music he has found a lyrical and poetic depth that is equivalent to the works of the best craftsmen.

The interview then explores how literature was the pathway into his present discipline and the intersections between English and theology. Discussing crossing disciplines, Andrew outlines his hope that dialogue with musicologists can open up new spaces for practitioners in both subjects. He discusses how those who work in Religious Studies might be said to be on a particular kind of journey that necessarily disrupts the kinds of presuppositions and inherited perspectives that were part of our early development. Andrew tells us why belief is irreversible and why he looks back on his early years with a sense of gratitude (as distinct from nostalgia) and he explains why he wouldn’t want to go back to that period of his life.

The podcast is available here.


Xiofan Amy Li on Chinese aesthetic traditions

 Dr Xiaofan Amy Li, Lecturer for the Department of Comparative Literature, has published an article in the latest edition of the journal Word & Image, Volume 34, Issue 3entitled ‘A Distant Dream: Balthus, Henri Michaux, and the Chinese Aesthetic Tradition’.

Balthasar Klossowski de Rola (1908-2001), known as Balthus, was a Polish-French artist; and Henri Michaux (1899-1984) was a Belgian-born poet, writer, and painter. The constant echo of a seemingly ‘Chinese aesthetics’ in Balthus’s and Michaux’s works gives rise to a few important questions: how do Balthus’s and Michaux’s creative practices and works engage with and re-invent the Chinese aesthetic tradition? What new understandings of Balthus and Michaux will be revealed if they are seen in the light of Chinese notions about painting, calligraphy, and poetic imagery? What would this say about the relation between artistic influence and creativity, especially in the case of the transformation of aesthetic forms and ideas across cultures and time? By discussing how Balthus’s figurative and landscape paintings relate to the Zhuangzi’s dream imagery and Song dynasty shanshui (mountain-water) paintings, and how Michaux’s ink paintings are integrated into his critical endeavor to break away from Orientalist stereotypes, it is argued that both artists are transformed by the Chinese aesthetic tradition, as well as actively transform how it is understood.

More specifically, the article focuses on aspects of Balthus’s and Michaux’s works. The article then reflects comparatively on how both Balthus and Michaux absorbed and reworked aesthetic forms and notions in Chinese literature and art in a way that is distinctly different from Orientalist representations of the Far Eastern Other. Through these reflections, it is argued finally that Balthus and Michaux not only are transformed by the Chinese aesthetic tradition, but also actively transform it, making one rethink the notion and uses of ‘Chinese aesthetics’ as well as artistic creativity.

Read the full article here.

Kent Law Fair offers excellent networking opportunity

Kent’s annual Law Fair on Wednesday 31 October offers an excellent opportunity for law students and non-law students to network with leading local, national and international law firms.

 This year’s Fair, organised by members of Kent Student Law Society (KSLS), will be held from 1pm – 4pm in Eliot Hall on Kent’s Canterbury campus.

 Law firms attending include Magic Circle firm Clifford Chance together with:

  • Brachers LLP 
  • Cripps LLP
  • Dentons 
  • DGB Solicitors
  •  Furley Page Solicitors
  •  Hatten Wyatt
  • Herbert Smith Freehills 
  • Martin Tolhurst Solicitors
  •  Thomson Snell & Passmore
  •  Trowers and Hamlins

 The Fair is open to all Kent students with an interest in pursuing a legal career. Anyone thinking of attending is encouraged to attend a preparatory talk in the preceding week on Tuesday 23 October. Philippa Ward, a Corporate Solicitor at Pinsent Masons, will be sharing advice on how to maximise the opportunity to network and explore career options. Confirmation of the time and location of the talk will be posted on KSLS’s Facebook page later next month.

 Law Fair organiser Nikoletta Komiati said: ‘As well as being a great networking opportunity, our 2018 Law Fair is the ideal way to gain an insight into vacation schemes and training contracts. It’s an event not to be missed.’

 KSLS is one of six student law societies at Kent Law School. Its primary aim is to support students exploring the option of a career in law as a solicitor. The Society holds talks, CV and interview workshops, and seminars with professionals from different careers and backgrounds throughout the term. It also offers a broad range of social events, including the Annual Law Dinner in February where students can wine and dine with legal professionals.

Aurora Event- 17 October 2018

The University’s continued commitment to Advance HE Aurora programme includes a number of complimentary initiatives, discussions and events. These are open to ALL members of staff throughout the year.

 The next University of Kent, Aurora @Kent Event, will be on Wednesday 17th October 2018, from 13.00 to 14.15, on our Canterbury Campus, Keynes College, Seminar Room 14.

 In this session, Helen Beebee, Samuel Hall Professor of Philosophy, University of Manchester will be delivering a talk on ‘Minorities’ in Academic Disciplines: Practical Strategies for Change.

 Helen Beebee comes from one of the academic fields where women are under-represented: Philosophy. Women make up about 25% of permanent academic staff in Philosophy in the UK. Professor Beebee is well-known and widely admired, both for thinking and speaking about women in Philosophy (for example on Women’s Hour) and for establishing practical strategies for change. Professor Beebee will be sharing stories and strategies and taking questions. You don’t need to know as much about Hume or Aristotle as she does for this session to be inspirational!

Like all Aurora events this is open to all staff, professional services and academic. Emphatically not women only. All welcome.

 Booking is not required for this event.

 In the meantime, if you have any questions regarding this Aurora @Kent event or the Aurora Programme, please do not hesitate to contact Jena Dady, Learning and Organisational Development Adviser or a member of the Learning and Organisational Development team.


CSHE Seminar Series 2018-19

The Centre for the Study of Higher Education (CSHE) Seminar Series for 2018-19 is now available.

 In this series of public seminars, CSHE spotlights different qualitative methods used in higher education research.  Speakers have been asked to discuss a method with which they have particular expertise, considering what makes it similar to and distinct from related methods and reflecting on challenges in using it.  Although the series focuses on applications in higher education, researchers across the social sciences may find it useful. 

To confirm your attendance at a seminar please complete the online form on the webpage.

Double Binds of ’68 Conference- 50th anniversary of the global uprisings and the bicentenary of the birth of Karl Marx

On the 50th anniversary of the global 1968 uprisings, and on the bicentenary of the birth of Karl Marx, this two-day multidisciplinary conference seeks to cast a retrospective light on the legacy of the former in order to illuminate the spectre of the latter. By thematising the figure of the double bind, this conference intends to explore the extent to which, and by means of which mechanisms, it can be argued that the radical social, political, psychic, and conceptual potential of the events of 1968 has ultimately been co-opted by the unfolding of neoliberalism over the past fifty years (the latter to be understood here as a political and economic system for organising society, subjectivity, culture, and thought).

 Keynote speakers: Prof Benjamin Noys (Chichester) and Dr Iain MacKenzie (Kent)

Please e-mail in advance to confirm attendance

 Double Binds of ’68 Conference

29-30 September 2018

Keynes College, University of Kent

 All are welcome (staff, students and the general public) but please e-mail in advance to confirm attendance.

 The conference programme and further information available here.

Podcast on comedienne Linda Smith’s signature gags

Dr Oliver Double, Deputy Head of the School of Arts and Director of the Centre for Popular and Comic Performance, has just released the latest episode of the podcast series ‘A History of Comedy in Several Objects’.

In the podcast series, Olly examines objects from Kent’s British Stand-Up Comedy Archive alongside Project Archivist Elspeth Millar.

The recent film Funny Cow (2017) uses one of the late, great Linda Smith’s signature jokes without permission or attribution. ‘Comedians and funny men see material as being common property… A lot of the jokes are shared,’ explains Olly in the episode.

Elspeth and Olly look through Linda’s old set-lists and unpublished recordings going back to the 1980s to trace the origins of the joke, and look into how it fits into her development as a comedian. You’ll hear different versions of the gag at different points in her career, to show how it changed and developed. It’s still quoted as one of Linda’s best jokes today. So what is the gag? All I’ll say is if you’re a fan of Linda’s – and not so much of her hometown Erith – you probably already know it. In any case, listen to the episode and find out.

The podcast is free to download and is available here.


FREE Language Express Meet the Tutor Event

Are you interested in learning a language? Would you like to find out more about the language learning opportunities available on campus?

 If the answer is yes, please come along to our Language Express Meet the Tutor event taking place in the Main Plaza (opposite the Essentials shop) on Wednesday 26th September from 12:00-14:00.

 Teachers from our Language Express programme and World Language modules will be ready to answer any questions you may have.

 The event is open to all and there is no need to book – just turn up on the day!

 Courses are available in a choice of 11 modern foreign languages at a number of different ability levels including Arabic, Dutch, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Mandarin, Modern Greek, Portuguese, Russian and Spanish.

 For more information, please visit our website or email


Unirider early bird discount ends soon

Purchase the Unirider up to and including 1 October 2018 for the early bird discount of £180 for the academic year. This is a saving of 77% on the public price. After the 1 October, the price will change to £255 for the academic year.

The green Unibus will be parked on campus for the first 2 weeks while the early bird discount is in place. Find the Unibus located on the lawn outside the Registry building on the Canterbury Campus between 10:00 and 16:00. It is also available to buy online on the Stagecoach website.

 This discount is available for students at both campuses. For more information about bus routes, timetables and discounts visit our Canterbury bus webpage.