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The Art of Parodies

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LSE Literary Festival event

Date: Friday 1 March 2013 
Time: 6.30-8pm
Venue: Wolfson Theatre, New Academic Building
Speakers: Ewan Morrison, Martin Rowson, D J Taylor
Chair: Michael Caines

F.R. Leavis thought parody demeaned the writer being parodied.  Condemned by some as a parasite on literature, with fan fiction perhaps its most reviled form - seen as crass,
sycophantic and anti-original. At its best, however, parody is humourous, illuminating and a powerful form of literary criticism. Join our panel to discuss the highs and lows of parody. 

Ewan Morrison is author of Close Your Eyes, Menage, Distance and Swung,the short story collection The Last Book you Read, as well as the mixed format book Tales from the Mall. As a cultural commentator he writes regularly for The Guardian. Ewan was the recipient of a Scottish Arts Council Writers Award 2005 and 2008, was a nominee for the ARENA magazine O2 Entrepreneur Award 2006, and was awarded a VARUNA writers residency in Australia as part of UNESCO's City of Literature 2006, where he appeared at the Sydney Writers Festival and on ABC Radio.

Martin Rowson is a multi-award winning cartoonist and writer whose work appears regularly in the Guardian, Independent on Sunday, Daily Mirror and many other publications. His previous books include graphic adaptations of The Waste Land and The Life and Opinions of Tristram Shandy, Gentleman, as well as a memoir about his late parents, Stuff, which was long-listed for the Samuel Johnson Prize in 2007. He was appointed Cartoon Laureate by former London mayor Ken Livingstone in 2001 in return for one pint of London Pride per annum (still six years in arrears) and is a former vice-president of the Zoological Society of London. His latest book is an adapted and updated version of Gulliver’s Travels set in the Blair years.

D J Taylor is the author of two acclaimed biographies, Thackerary (1999), and Orwell: The Life, which won the Whitbread Biography Prize in 2003. He has written nine novels, the most recent being Secondhand Daylight (2012), Derby Day (2011), At the Chime of a City Clock (2010), Ask Alice (2009) and Kept: A Victorian Mystery (2006). David is also well known as a critic and reviewer, and his other books include What You Didn't Miss Part 94, a compilation of literary spoofs as featured in Private Eye.

Michael Caines is an editor at the Times Literary Supplement and the author of Shakespeare and the Eighteenth Century, to be published later this year.

Update, Wednesday 30 January: John Crace will no longer be chairing this event, due to unforeseen circumstances.

This event forms part of LSE's 5th Space for Thought Literary Festival, taking place from Tuesday 26 February - Saturday 2 March 2013, with the theme 'Branching Out'.

Suggested hashtag for this event for Twitter users: #LSELitfest


This event has been certified for CPD purposes by the CPD Certification Service. Self-Assessment Record forms will be made available for delegates wishing to record further learning and knowledge enhancement for Continuing Personal and Professional Development (CPD) purposes. For delegates who wish to obtain a CPD Certificate of Attendance, it is the responsibility of delegates to register their details with a LSE steward at the end of the event and as of 1 September 2014 a certificate will be sent within 28 days of the date of the event attended by the CPD Certification Service.  If a delegate fails to register their details at the event, it will not prove possible to issue a certificate. (For queries relating to CPD Certificates of attendance after a request please phone 0208 840 4383 or email info@cpduk.co.uk).

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