On the final leg of her literary journey, ISABELLA DOCKERY completes her trilogy, using African literature to explore the continent. Over the past few months, many students have felt at a loose end, having had their carefully made summer plans cancelled as a result of Covid-19. At the moment we are in the midst of a slow and cautious return to normality. With information about online classes and university policy now being released, students can begin to form routines, something which is clinically proven to improve mental health. As the new term approaches, I accepted that my free time was dwindling and resolved to travel, for the final time, through literature. For my last literary journey, I ventured into Africa, relishing the opportunity to immerse myself in the continent before deadlines and workloads begin to pile up. As I have never visited the continent, I selected some of its most…Continue Reading

Travelling through Literature 3/3 – Africa

ISABELLE OSBORNE discusses how the closure of Phantom of the Opera is a dark omen for the future of British theatrical companies Since 1986, Andrew Lloyd Webber’s masterpiece The Phantom of the Opera has delighted audiences across generations with its timelessly beautiful story and exquisite music. It is no surprise, therefore, that producer Cameron Mackintosh’s declaration that the musical has been forced to close permanently on the West End has come as a tragic shock to both the industry and lovers of theatre.  Closing Phantom arguably marks the end of the golden age of West End theatre. As London’s second-longest-running musical, Phantom has withstood many challenging times, such as the 2008 financial crisis that saw a huge economic downturn. Yet after 33 years of theatrical prowess, the show has finally met its match with COVID-19 restrictions. The government-imposed coronavirus restrictions have been of severe detriment to the theatre industry, threatening…Continue Reading

The Show Must Not Go On

SHANTI GIOVANNETTI-SINGH explores the transformative power of literature in times of quarantine.  On Monday 23rd March, Boris Johnson announced a UK lockdown in the attempt to tackle the spread of Covid-19. This frightening and profoundly unprecedented period is encapsulated by one clear, albeit surprisingly challenging, command: stay home. For the first time, in centuries perhaps, we have been ordered, by law, to remain inside the increasingly claustrophobic confines of our own homes. This bizarre experience, in which we must shun the outdoors and refrain from social gatherings, is so very alien and fearful to the majority of the population. From anxiety, to frustration, to boredom, this period of quarantine has evoked a range of emotions and responses. Whilst of course, the circumstance of this forced isolation is singular- it is the result of a deadly pandemic which is ravaging communities and putting millions of individuals at risk- my personal experience…Continue Reading

Literature for lockdown