University of Kent Paris School of Arts and Culture, Reid Hall

4 rue de Chevreuse
75006 Paris

The University of London Institute in Paris and the University of Kent Paris School of Arts and Culture are joining forces to bring the Being Human Festival to Paris with a roundtable event "A Moveable Feast: Being Human in Paris", with Professor Sarah Churchwell, director of the Being Human Festival (School of Advanced Studies).

This evening will be an opportunity to discuss the importance of literature and the Humanities in the wake of the attacks in Paris one year ago. After these events which turned spaces of festivity into targets for acts of terror, people laid copies of Hemingway’s Moveable Feast on the improvised shrines dotted around the areas affected. The title in French - Paris est une fête – stood out as a defiant refusal of the terror that had been unleashed on the city. What does this turn to literature, and to a text written by an American about the expatriate community in the Années Folles of the interwar era, tell us about why literature remains a vital response to violent ideologies? We will address this question and the importance of writing and translation in the heart of Hemingway’s old stamping ground of Montparnasse, bringing French and British perspectives to the question of why the Humanities help us be human better.

The event is scheduled to take place at 6.30pm, Wednesday 23 November, at Reid Hall, Paris.

Guest speakers

The event will feature contemporary British writer Joanna Walsh, recently described by Deborah Levy as “fast becoming one of our most important writers,” and Professor Claire Joubert, who leads the “Poétique de l’étranger” programme and is author of numerous studies of English and Anglophone literature at the intersection between poetics and politics.

  • Claire Joubert is Professor of English Literature at Université Paris 8. She is the author of Critiques de l’anglais. Poétique et politique d’une langue mondialisée, (2015) and editor of recent collaborative volumes Le Postcolonial comparé. Anglophonie, francophonie (2014) and Comparer l’étranger. Enjeux du comparatisme en littérature (2006).
  • Joanna Walsh is the author of Hotel, Vertigo, Grow a Pair, and Fractals. Her writing has also been published by Granta Magazine, The Dalkey Archive Best European Fiction 2015, Best British Short Stories 2014 and 2015, The Stinging Fly, gorse journal, The Dublin Review and others. She reviews at The New Statesman and The Guardian. She edits at 3:AM Magazine and Catapult, and is the founder of @read_women. She is a judge on the 2016 Goldsmiths prize, and is a PhD candidate in Creative and Critical writing at the University of East Anglia.
  • Sarah Churchwell is one of the UK’s most prominent academics. Chair of Public Understanding of the Humanities and Professorial Fellow in American Literature, Institute of English Studies (School of Advanced Study) since 2015, she is the author of The Many Lives of Marilyn Monroe (2004) and Careless People: Murder, Mayhem and the Invention of The Great Gatsby (2013). Sarah was also on the judging panel for the 2014 Man Booker Prize.

  • Peter Brown is Professor of Medieval English Literature and Director of the University of Kent Paris School of Arts and Culture. He is the author of numerous studies of Chaucer and also, in 2013, of Tango, a meditation on the way in which tango mediates touch through technique and decorum.

This panel is organised by Dr Anna-Louise Milne (ULIP) and will be chaired by Professor Peter Brown (Kent).

Being Human Festival

With the support of:

 University Kent, Paris




Event contact

For further information, please contact Dr Anna-Louise Milne