Sunday, October 26, 2014

Jeanette Winterson's Foundation Lecture at the University of Manchester: From Gradgrind to Graphene

I am amazed that writer Jeanette Winterson's Foundation Day Lecture at the University of Manchester hasn't been more widely reported. It was a powerful tour of the University's radical progressive traditions - from Gradgrind to Graphene - and at times an angry call to arms to resist austerity and the forces of conservatism.

It was also a eulogy to the intellectual traditions of the city that didn't mention football or any of that music that so many pretended to like in the 90s. Maybe that's why it merited so little coverage.

As soon as there's a link to a transcript, or a more detailed report, I'll add it. In the meantime above is a delightful video which introduced her lecture. Featuring a range of voices from Brian Cox to Michael Wood and Shami Chakrabarti and touches on some of the ideas and ambitions of this fine institution.

It was another reminder of how fortunate I was to have had the opportunity to attend the University in the 1980s when I got a grant to do so. It was a transformative period of my life and it's why I am so proud to give a little back by serving as a member of the Alumni Board and sitting on the General Assembly.

No comments: