British academy


Edward Lear’s Lines of Flight

Dr Matthew Bevis

Thursday 1 November 2012, 6.00–7.15pm, followed by a reception
The British Academy, 10-11 Carlton House Terrace, London SW1Y 5AH

‘Verily I am an odd bird’, Edward Lear wrote in his diary in 1860. This lecture examined a range of odd encounters between birds and people in Lear’s paintings, illustrations, and poems. It considered how his interest in birds – an interest at once scientific and aesthetic – helped to shape his nonsense writings. Dr Matthew Bevis suggests that poetic and pictorial lines of flight became, for Lear, a means of exploring the claims that art might make on our attention, and the insights that this attention may foster.

About the speaker
Matthew Bevis is a Lecturer in English and a Fellow of Keble College at the University of Oxford. He is the author of The Art of Eloquence: Byron, Dickens, Tennyson, Joyce (2007), Some Versions of Empson, ed. (2007), and Comedy: A Very Short Introduction (2012).

This lecture was also repeated on Wednesday 28 November 2012, 6.00pm - 7.15pm followed by a reception. Click here to download a flyer for the event (PDF file - 199 KB). Venue: The Bowland Auditorium, Berrick Saul Building, University of York, York YO10 5DD