Covid-19: In response to the evolving public health challenge caused by COVID-19 we have made the decision to postpone our summer schools for a year. Those who have already registered for a place should have received an email with more information, and will be given priority booking when registration for the summer schools reopens. We hope to offer some online content in lieu of the summer schools this year, so please follow IES Twitter, and sign up to our newsletter for more announcements.

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13-17 July 2020

Drawing on the rich heritage of 'Victorian Bloomsbury', the Institute of English Studies (IES) is excited to offer an annual study week dedicated to celebrating and understanding the great nineteenth-century writers.

In 2020, the Nineteenth-Century Summer School (formerly the Nineteenth-Century Study Week) has Charles Dickens as its chosen author. The School will run from July 13 - July 17. The cluster of novels chosen for discussion are Bleak House, Great Expectations, Little Dorrit, and Our Mutual Friend.

Participants will have the opportunity to hear leading UK scholars on the latest research through five morning lectures, followed by questions and discussion. The seminars, in a group of about 15 students, will be text-based, with novels and other works for preparatory reading. They will be led by a discussion leader with specialist expertise on the Dickens's work. The schedule also provides for a series of student-led informal seminars on DIckens's journalism convened by a staff member and the opportunity for guided library time. We are planning a tour of Dickens’s London, a reading from the novels and a piano recital of Dickens-related music.  Above all we value the opportunity for students and staff to work closely together.

The internationally renowned scholars leading discussions will include Dr Daniel Tyler, University of Cambridge (Bleak House),  Professor Catherine Waters, University of Kent (Great Expectations),  Dr Ushashi Dasgupta, Oxford University (Little Dorrit), Professor Steven Connor,  University of Cambridge (Our Mutual Friend). Claire Tomalin, the distinguished biographer of Dickens, will deliver the 2020 Hilda Hulme Lecture as part of the week, focusing on Dickens through her autobiography.

Directed by the internationally celebrated scholar, critic and teacher Professor Isobel Armstrong, the Study Week will bring together Dickens experts and postdoctoral and graduate students. It will be held here at the IES in the heart of Bloomsbury. 

Professor Armstrong is author of 'Victorian Glassworlds. Glass Culture and the Imagination' (2008), ' Victorian Poetry: Poetry, Poetics and Politics' (1996) and 'The Radical Aesthetic' (2000).