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Writers in Conversation - Courttia Newland

17 February, 2020

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University of Southampton English Department presents

Writers in Conversation - Courttia Newland

Mon 17 Feb at 7.30pm at NST Campus

A novel “seasoned with style and sophistication” – Booker Prize winner Bernadine Evaristo

Courttia Newland, a fiction writer and playwright whose work has been broadcast on the BBC and anthologized widely, will read from his recent work, part of the University of Southampton English department’s Writers in Conversation series.  

His latest novel, The Gospel According to Cane, explores the dilemma of a woman, Beverley Cottrell, whose son was kidnapped 20 years before.  When a sullen young man claims to be her son, she wants to believe him, despite warnings from her friends not to trust him.

The novel is also interlaced with history, as she dreams that her Barbadian ancestors sold chains, shackles and whips to slavers in the 19th Century, raising an implicit question of collusion in today’s world.

Newland, also a writer of short stories and screenplays including two episodes of the Steve McQueen series “Small Axe,” will talk about writing across genres as we enter a complicated new decade, in a q-and-a led by writer Carole Burns, head of Creative Writing at the University of Southampton.

Mr. Newland successfully engages some of the most difficult questions we will ever face – New York Journal of Books

For all the suffering, there are also moments of joy, as Newland shows how writing itself can be a tool of survival -- The Independent

Newland is the author of seven works of fiction his debut, The Scholar. His short stories have appeared in many anthologies and broadcast on BBC Radio 4. In 2016 he was awarded the Tayner Barbers Award for science fiction writing and the Roland Rees Busary for playwriting. He is associate lecturer in creative writing at the University of Westminster and is completing a PhD in creative writing. As a screenwriter, he has written two episodes of the Steve McQueen BBC series Small Axe. 

Writers in Conversation features some of today’s best fiction writers, poets, non-fiction writers and playwrights reading from their work and talking about their writing lifestyle - how characters take shape and where ideas come from. Led by creative writing lecturers at the University of Southampton, the event takes place in Nuffield Southampton Theatres Campus Cafe Bar, helping to create an evening that is relaxed, engaging and intelligent, yet informal.

Tickets: £5

Free for Uni of Southampton English staff and students with code.