About this day
For A-level students of the AQA B specification
In a programme designed to inspire, support and entertain, four expert speakers will explore the literary, social and international perspectives of this A-level option, offering comprehensive strategies for approaching set texts. This outstanding day will provide students with invaluable insights and helpful guidance to allow them to achieve their very best in the examination. Topics covered will include Shakespearean tragedy, tragedy in the novel and a session exploring poetry and other genres. We are delighted to announce that former Chief Examiner Stella Canwell MBE will chair this day.
Programme & speakers
Tragedy in Shakespeare Nick Hutchison, Actor, Director and Lecturer
Nick Hutchison will provide insights and entertainment as he explores Shakespearean tragedy, focusing on the role of the tragic villain, the use of plots and sub-plots and the way in which language is used to heighten the sense of tragedy.
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.
Defining tragedy, the tragic genre and tragic sub-genres Neil Bowen, Teacher, lecturer and author
Neil Bowen will explore definitions and genres of tragedy in terms of literary style, focusing on the literary context for these tragic aspects and using a range of examples from some popular set texts.
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.
Conflicting visions of the world Jon Rich, A-level examiner and teacher
Jon Rich will draw on the prescribed drama and poetry texts suggesting connections concerning disorder and tragedy. There will be focus on the prescribed Shakespeare texts and on Keats and Miller.
About Jon Rich
Jon Rich taught English for many years. He has been a Senior Examiner for over thirty years and is also a Moderator for NEA and Examiner for Classical Civilisation.
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).