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Literary Festival 2014: Short Stories, Deep Reflections


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Speaker(s): AS Byatt, Professor Mary Evans, Alex Preston
Chair: Cathy Galvin

Recorded on 1 March 2014 in Sheikh Zayed Theatre, New Academic Building.

Does this year’s awarding of the Nobel prize for literature to a short-story writer mark a revival of the short story’s reputation, long undervalued in this country? This panel will celebrate the unique qualities of the short story form and ask why historically it has been seen as a predominantly female genre.

AS Byatt is renowned internationally for her novels and short stories. Her novels include the Booker Prize-Winning Possession and The Children's Book. Her most recent book is Ragnorak: The End of the Gods, a retelling of the Norse myth. She is editor of The Oxford Book of English Short Stories. A distinguished critic as well as a writer of fiction, A S Byatt was appointed CBE in 1990 and DBE in 1999.

Mary Evans is a Centennial Professor at LSE based in the Gender Institute. Prior to coming to the LSE as a visiting fellow she taught women's studies and sociology at the University of Kent. Her work is interdisciplinary and crosses boundaries between the social sciences and humanities. Her research interests include narrative fiction, focusing on themes of gender and class and the impact of gender on the academy.

Alex Preston (@ahmpreston) was born in 1979 and lives with his family in London. His first novel, This Bleeding City, was an international bestseller and won the Spear's and Edinburgh first book awards. It has been translated into twelve languages. Alex writes and reviews for the New Statesman and the Observer and is a regular panelist on BBC2's The Review Show.

Cathy Galvin (@cathygalvin1) is founder and editor of The Word Factory and founder of The Sunday Times EFG Private Bank Short Story Award.

This event forms part of the LSE Space for Thought Literary Festival 2014, taking place from Monday 24 February - Saturday 1 March 2014, with the theme 'Reflections'.

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