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Literary adventures on Irish and Welsh shores

15 May 2008

Gwyneth Lewis

Cardiff University is welcoming Gwyneth Lewis, the first National Poet of Wales, for a poetry reading and talk which is open to members of the public.

Gwyneth Lewis writes and publishes poetry in both English and Welsh. It is her words which adorn the facade of the Wales Millennium Centre in six foot high letters. Having published 6 books of poetry and 2 non-fiction works, she has garnered enthusiastic acclaim from readers and critics alike.

Gwyneth has previously served as Poet in Residence at Cardiff University’s School of Physics and Astronomy and was made an Honorary Fellow of the University in 2005.

During her talk on 16 May, the Cardiff-born poet will be reading from her own work and also from Irish writers who have influenced her. The event, which is open to members of the public, is the highlight of a two day symposium organised by the Ireland-Wales Research Network.

Speaking ahead of the talk, entitled ‘Criss-crossings: Literary Adventures on Irish and Welsh Shores’, Gwyneth said: "Irish writing has been a formative influence on me and I’m glad to be able to express my gratitude to it. Being Welsh, however, I assume the privilege of kin in order to criticize the ones we love, which is why the lecture is called Criss-crossings"

Gwyneth Lewis is the second high-profile literary figure attracted to the University by the Network since it officially launched last year. The Pulitzer-winning poet Paul Muldoon captivated a large audience when he visited the University to give a poetry reading in December 2007. A series of seminars exploring the relationships between Wales and Ireland have also taken place this year.

The Network, funded by the Arts and Humanities Council of Great Britain, aims to develop a deeper awareness of the overlapping histories of Wales and Ireland and thereby contribute to a fuller understanding of the interconnected pasts of Britain and Ireland. It is run by Dr Claire Connolly and Dr Katie Gramich of Cardiff School of English, Communication and Philosophy, in conjunction with partners at Aberystwyth University.

The poetry reading and talk, supported by Academi, takes place at Cardiff School of Optometry and Vision Sciences, Maindy Road, at 6pm, with a reception beforehand from 5.30pm. The event is free but pre-booking is essential. For tickets, please email or phone 029 2087 6936.


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