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Confessions of an escapism artist – handling escapism while social distancing

At times like these, the urge to escape from the world is greater than ever. This may be through TV, books, games, music… anything that might help someone mentally escape from the reality. And with modern technology, it is all too easy to achieve. You may not even recognise that you are doing it. It’s …

Beyond the Books: What Has University Taught Me?

Besides (hopefully) gaining an English degree, going to University has taught me so much. From theatre practitioners, the Irish Literary Revival and the works of Alexander Pope, to key poetic techniques and the acquisition of children’s language, my degree’s breadth has equipped me with vital analytical and critical skills. Yet my University education certainly went …

Mental Health Awareness in the English Department

Becky Cameron is known for sending out emails. In fact, any English student’s emails are most definitely 60% Becky Cameron, which I say with the utmost fondness – especially after the day she organised on the 12th of March 2020. I always find myself a little sceptical of Mental Health Awareness week. It sometimes feels …

Taking Refuge in Literature

As we turned inward during lockdown, we may have felt more compelled than ever to turn to books to find refuge during these trying times. We turn to devour endless pages with imaginary places of fantasy to a world buzzing with life. A reality of social life which, to us, felt fictional and so far …

The Myth of Individualism

In the Dutch historian Rutger Bregman’s latest book Humankind, he researches a real-life version of Lord of the Flies. In June 1965, six boys from Tonga floated out to sea in a stolen boat, and found themselves washed up on a desert island for fifteen months. Unlike William Golding’s novel, however, which ends in brutality …

Review: The Emotional Impact of Pale Blue Dot

In times of stress or worry, I think it’s important to read literature that puts things into perspective. I am always drawn to “YOU ARE HERE”, a chapter in Carl Sagan’s Pale Blue Dot, the most reflective and emotionally impactful work of non-fiction I have read. The chapter describes the journey NASA’s Voyager was making …

Bittersweet Symphony – my ode to being a final year English student

It seemed that as soon as I arrived back to University after Christmas, all fresh-faced and bushy tailed, the prospect of (gulp) graduating and (gulp) leaving Nottingham, hit me like a tonne of bricks (or should I say books?). I have become so accustomed to my routine as an English student at Nottingham. Weekdays are …