About this day
For A-level students of the AQA B Specification
During this illuminating and thought-provoking programme, four leading experts will offer students comprehensive support by delving into the literary, social and international perspectives of this A-level option. Guaranteed to motivate and inspire, this eye-opening day will equip students with essential insights and guidance to enable them to achieve their very best in the examination. Over the course of the day, topics will include Shakespearean tragedy, how to define the tragic genre, and how to compare and link texts across different genres and times. We are delighted to announce that Jennifer Webb will be chairing the day.
Programme & speakers
Tragedy in Shakespeare Nick Hutchison, Actor, Director and Lecturer
Nick Hutchison will explore different approaches to Shakespearian tragedy, focusing on the textual clues in the script, issues of staging and the role of the audience. He will draw on Othello, Richard II and King Lear.
About Nick Hutchison
Nick Hutchison is an actor, director and lecturer who has directed Shakespeare’s plays across the globe. He lectures for Shakespeare’s Globe, LAMDA, RADA and universities worldwide on Elizabethan and Jacobean Theatre, specialising in theatre performance derived from close textual analysis. As an actor he has worked in film, TV, theatre and radio, including for the Royal Shakespeare Company and in films including About A Boy, Miss Potter, 102 Dalmatians, Fierce Creatures, The Bounty and Restoration.
Reworking tragedy: old forms for new contexts Simon Avery, University of Westminster
Concepts of tragedy have been continually reworked across the centuries in order to deal with new pressing issues and concerns. Drawing on set texts, this session will explore inherited conventions of tragedy in the novels of Thomas Hardy and F.Scott Fitzgerald.
About Dr Simon Avery
Dr Simon Avery is Reader in nineteenth-century literature and culture at the University of Westminster, where he teaches courses on fiction and poetry from the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. His most recent publication is an anthology of queer love poetry from Sappho to the present, Hand in Hand With Love (2023).
Comparing and linking texts across genres and time Neil Bowen, Teacher, lecturer and author
Neil Bowen will stimulate students to think about the relationship between the set drama texts and the novels or poetry texts, drawing on selected examples.
About Neil Bowen
An experienced Head of English and a freelance writer, Neil Bowen is the author of a range of books, articles and English resources and a member of Ofqual’s experts panel for English. He is the author of The Art of Writing English Essays for GCSE, co-author of The Art of Writing English Essays for A-level and Beyond and of The Art of Poetry, volumes 1-5. Neil also created and runs the Peripeteia project bridging the gap between A-level and degree level English courses.
So what is tragedy? Some ideas and theories. Sean McEvoy, University of Cambridge
Dr Sean McEvoy talks through some of the ways in which philosophers and critics have tried to describe what tragedy is, illustrated by examples from the AQA ‘B’ A Level course.
About Dr Sean McEvoy
Dr Sean McEvoy taught Literature in a Brighton sixth-form college for many years. He is currently a Bye Fellow of Murray Edwards College, University of Cambridge. His books include Tragedy: A Student Handbook (EMC, 2009) and Tragedy: The Basics (Routledge, 2017).