Brookes secures stars for Sunday Times Oxford Literary Festival

Thursday, 23 February 2012


Writers, food experts and cultural commentators are taking part in a series of high-profile events organised by Oxford Brookes University as part of this year's Sunday Times Oxford Literary Festival.

Writers, food experts and cultural commentators are taking part in a series of high-profile events organised by Oxford Brookes University as part of this year’s Sunday Times Oxford Literary Festival.

Speakers in the Oxford Brookes programme include writers Joanne Harris (Chocolat) and Donna Leon (Commissario Guido Brunetti series), cheesemaker Alex James, comedian Stewart Lee, graphic novelist Alan Moore (The Watchmen, V for Vendetta), Oxford City poet Kate Clanchy, Carlo Petrini who founded the worldwide Slow Food Movement and ‘Britain’s greatest living nature writer’ Richard Mabey.

Donald Sloan, Head of the Oxford School of Hospitality Management and Chair of Oxford Gastronomica and Dr Simon Kovesi Head of the Department of English and Modern Languages, drew up the programme. Both Simon and Donald, together with Oxford Brookes Vice-Chancellor Professor Janet Beer, are either giving talks themselves or chairing events.

The Oxford Brookes events are:

Sunday 25 March

  • Other Worlds in Oxford (Queen’s College, 4pm)

    Oxford’s City Poet and Oxford Brookes Creative Writing Fellow Kate Clanchy leads a session of poetry reading celebrating the city’s diversity. Chaired by Professor Steve Matthews, director of Oxford Brookes' Poetry Centre.

Monday 26 March

  • Go Slow, with Carlo Petrini (Christ Church College, 10am)
  • Carlo Petrini is the founder of the worldwide Slow Food Movement. In this talk, Petrini will reflect on his 30-year fight against the standardisation of taste and culture.

  • Food Writing – the State of the Art (Christ Church College, 12pm)

    With success as a food writer increasingly linked to media exposure, is there still a place for well-researched, thoughtful and inspiring food literature? Join Claudia Roden, Matthew Fort and Tom Parker-Bowles to discuss.

  • What’s the Point of the Arts and Humanities? (Christ Church: Master’s Garden Marquee, 2pm)

    Comedians Stewart Lee and Josie Long, together with graphic novelist Alan Moore, debate the value of the Arts and the Humanities. Chaired by Simon Kovesi.

  • Food in Fiction (Christ Church: Master’s Garden Marquee, 4pm)

    Donna Leon, Joanne Harris and Jessica Harris discuss the evocative role that food plays in fiction.

  • Donald Sloan in conversation with Georgio Locatelli (The Gallery, Old Bank Hotel, 4pm)

    Giorgio talks about his passion for quality, seasonal, culturally authentic cuisine and his recent book and television series, Made in Sicily.

  • Oxford Gastronomica Literary Dinner (Gees Restaurants, Banury Road, Oxford Brookes University)

    Prepared by renowned Italian chef Giorgio Locatelli, and hosted by Professor Janet Beer, the dinner will celebrate Oxford Gastronomica’s involvement in the Sunday Times Oxford Literary Festival.

    Tickets: £95

Tuesday 27 March

  • The British Food Revolution – Rhetoric or Reality? (Christ Church College, 10am)

    Donald Sloan joins leading investigative journalist Joanna Blythman and writer Gerard Baker to discuss Britain’s complex relationship with food.

  • Beastly Things and a Life of Crime Writing (Christ Church: Master’s Garden Marquee, 12pm)

    Crime writer Donna Leon is in conversation with Janet Beer.

  • British Cheese – The Young Pretenders (Christ Church: Hall, 12pm)

    Join Alex James and Henrietta Green to taste six new British artisan cheeses, each representing a different production method and geographical region, and to discuss the resurgence in British cheese-making.

  • Edith Wharton: Sex, Satire and the Older Woman (Corpus Christi College, 2pm)

    Professor Janet Beer and Avril Horner, Emeritus Professor at Kingston University, examine the later stages of Edith Wharton’s career. The session is chaired by Dr Alex Goody, Reader in Twentieth-Century Literature at Oxford Brookes.

Wednesday 28 March

Friday 30 March

  • Chocolate is the Word (Christ Church: Hall, 12pm)

    Under the guidance of Oxford Brookes students, Oxford Academy pupils have devised, written and here will perform a series of stories and poems based on chocolate. The discussion will be chaired by Dr James Hawes, novelist and director of creative writing at Oxford Brookes.

Sunday 1 April

  • Culture and the Irish Future (Christ Church: Festival Room 2, 4pm)

    Declan Kiberd in discussion. Chaired by Dr Eoin Flannery, Senior Lecturer in Contemporary Literature at Oxford Brookes.

To browse for other events, please visit the festival website.