A new biography of Robert Graves by Dr Jean Moorcroft-Wilson is due to be published by Bloomsbury in August 2018, covering the years from his birth in London, school at Charterhouse, holidays in Harlech, his service with the Royal Welch Fusiliers in the First World War, his marriage to Nancy Nicholson, study at Oxford, the arrival of the American poet Laura Riding, departure to Egypt with both women and his and Nancy’s children in 1926 to be a Professor of English at Cairo University, and their return to England. It will also cover their and their circle’s tumultuous relationships in London, until Riding’s jump from a high window and Graves’s eventual departure to Mallorca with Riding, but without Nancy or his children, after writing his autobiography Good-bye To All That at the age of 33.
‘Robert Graves: From Great War Poet to Good-bye To All That 1895-1929’ by Jean Moorcroft-Wilson will be published by Bloomsbury Continuum on 23 August 2018.
Dr Jean Moorcroft Wilson is well-known to many WPA members for her writing and lectures and has been described as the ‘doyenne of war poet biographers’. Her publications include biographies of Isaac Rosenberg (on whom she lectures worldwide), Siegfried Sassoon, Edward Thomas and Virginia Woolf. This new biography will cover the whole of the period in which Robert Graves wrote most of his work about war, from the publication of his first book of poetry Over the Brazier in the year of the Battle of the Somme, in which he was severely wounded and left on the battlefield presumed ‘died of wounds’, to that of his famous memoir of the war, Good-bye To All That.
Publishers Bloomsbury Continuum are offering a pre-publication discount of 10% on the hardback price of £25, for copies ordered directly from them. In a rather Catch-22 move for books costing £25, orders over £25 are post-free. Order 2 copies post-free for £45 or one for £22.50 plus postage, at https://www.bloomsbury.com/uk/robert-graves-9781472929143.
Stephen Fry has lent his backing to an exciting new national poetry competition to mark the 100th anniversary of the end of the First World War.
A competition named A Poem to Remember and chaired by HRH Prince William, Duke of Cambridge, is intended to honour and convey the challenges faced by the current men and women serving in the Military, and their families.
The winning poem will be chosen by the public and read by HRH The Duke of Cambridge at a special event at the new Defence and National Rehabilitation Centre (DNRC) this summer. It will also be mounted at the DNRC and its author will receive a cash prize of £2,000, with four runners-up receiving £500. Only one entry is permitted per person. Entries are acceptable from any location. Poems must be no longer than 25 lines. The closing date and time for entries is April 9, 2018, at 23.59 pm. The competition is open to everyone aged 17 and over.
Entries will be whittled down to a long list of 25 before a short list of five judged the best are selected by a panel of short list judges, chaired by historian and broadcaster Dan Snow and including Stephen Fry and Andy McNab. The winner will then be decided by a public vote.
More information on how to enter the competition can be found here.
** DEADLINE FOR CFP PROPOSALS EXTENDED TO 31 MARCH 2018 **
Plans are advanced for the 14th International Robert Graves Society Conference, 10th – 14th July 2018. The theme this year will be:
‘Robert Graves and Europe: Good-bye to All That / But It Still Goes On’
The conference will take place at the former Gran Hotel, Palma de Mallorca, where Graves and Riding stayed on their arrival in Palma in 1929, and at Deià, where they lived until 1936. Graves returned to Mallorca in 1946 with Beryl Pritchard Graves and their family and lived in Deià until his death in 1985.
The hotel is now the Caixa Cultural, a cultural centre in Palma run by La Caixa, a major Catalan and Spanish bank. This will be the fifth Robert Graves conference to be held there and at Deià since the centenary conference in Mallorca held in 1995. We are most grateful to La Caixa bank and staff at Caixa Cultural for their continued support.
Submit you proposal to give a paper and/or book your place at Robert Graves Mallorca 2018 now by sending your proposal to Charles Mundye at C.Mundye@shu.ac.uk (paper proposals or questions about the CFP or academic programme) or Patrick Villa, firstname.lastname@example.org (hotels, travel, administrative and financial details) now!
This series was produced as part of the University of Oxford, Faculty of English Spring School (3-5 April 2014) and is aimed at members of the public, particularly those who have read some World War One poetry and are now seeking a deeper critical appreciation.
Oxford University has made theses podcasts available on an on an open education basis and under a Creative Commons licence. Visit the following page to see a list of the lectures recorded and listen to them: http://podcasts.ox.ac.uk/series/british-world-war-one-poetry-introduction . Under the terms of the CC licence the recordings should not be republished commercially.
Mary Borden Poems of Love and War edited by Paul O’Prey (Dare-Gale Press)
Suffragette, socialite, novelist, nurse, Mary Borden wrote some of the most remarkable poems of the First World War. Still in her twenties, she used her own money to set up and run a field hospital for French soldiers at the Somme, situated ‘as close to the fighting as possible’. Her poems are spontaneous, passionate reactions to what she saw and did. Although married with three children, she fell in love with a young British officer she met at the Front. The poems she wrote to him while they were both at the war have an immediate and reckless intensity.
Mary Borden is featured in several major anthologies of First World War poetry, but this is the first full book of her poems to be published, 100 years after they were written. Many of these poems are published in book form for the first time, including the love poems.
Borden’s memoir, The Forbidden Zone (1929) is one of the most compelling accounts of Front Line service in the war.
The book was launched at the Wimbledon Book Festival on 11 October 2015, by Shirley Williams and Paul O’Prey.
Discover the artworks and story of Britain’s original rebel artist in the largest UK retrospective of Wyndham Lewis’ work to date.
Marking the 60th anniversary of his death and the centenary of his commission as an official war artist in 1917, Wyndham Lewis: Life, Art, War will comprise of more than 160 artworks, books, journals and pamphlets from major public and private, national and international collections.
A radical force in twentieth century British art and literature, Lewis was a brilliant draughtsman, innovative writer and satirist, and leader of Britain’s one and only avant-garde art movement, Vorticism. Spanning from the First World War to the nuclear age, Lewis’ career encompassed the most violent and chaotic period in human history. He was a controversial figure whose ideas, opinions and personality inspired, enticed and repelled in equal measure
To mark the centenary of the CWGC’s foundation by Royal Charter in 1917, a ground-breaking exhibition is being staged at CWGC Brookwood Military Cemetery near Woking, Surrey.
It was officially opened on Saturday 20 May by English actor and adventurer Brian Blessed OBE and will run for six months.
For Then, For Now, Forever celebrates the first 100 years of the Commonwealth War Graves Commission. Curated by CWGC Archivist Andrew Fetherston, it is being staged in the Grade 1 listed Canadian Records Building at Brookwood Military Cemetery – the largest CWGC site in the UK with more than 5,000 burials and 3,500 commemorations on the Brookwood Memorial.
The exhibition tells the history of the CWGC from its foundation during the First World War through to the present day, using historic objects and artefacts from our archive and collections.
Many of the exhibits have never been publicly displayed before. They include an original First World War grave marker and a petition from the 1920s addressed to our then-President, HRH Edward, Prince of Wales. The petition contains more than 8,000 signatures – predominantly from mothers who had lost sons in the war – asking the Commission to reconsider the use of a uniform headstone in favour of a cross.
These and other objects tell the sometimes difficult story of how the vision of one man — Fabian Ware — came to forever change the way we remember the war dead.
There are also daily tours at 11am and 5pm, from volunteers, telling individual and collective stories of the cemetery and of those commemorated there.
EDWARD THOMAS: A LIFE IN PICTURES, by Richard Emeny
In June 2017, Enitharmon Press will be publishing the long awaited illustrated biography of Edward Thomas by the Edward Thomas Fellowship’s chairman, Richard Emeny. This is the culmination of many years’ study of the poet’s life and work and draws also on Emeny’s extensive knowledge of Thomas’s family, friends, literary associates, publications and the places he either lived or visited. Offering in some ways a revisionist biographical portrait, the book combines the story of Edward’s life with numerous illustrations, including photographs, printed material, maps and original letters, many of which have never been published before. It will add significantly to what is already known of Thomas and his family before and after his death by putting his biography into a visual and historical context.
Those of you who wish to subscribe to Richard Emeny’s book in advance of publication may opt to have your names included in a ‘List of Subscribers’ to be printed at the end of the book. The publication price will be £30, which is inclusive of postage within the UK. To subscribe (the deadline for subscribers is Thursday 13 April), please email: email@example.com, telephone Enitharmon on 020 7430 0844, send a cheque payable to Enitharmon Editions to 10 Bury Place, London WC1A 2JL, or visit the Enitharmon website page with this link: http://www.enitharmon.co.uk/product/thomas-life-pictures/