Conference 'A Vigilant Wonder: Michael Edwards, Poetry, and the Bible'

Michael Edwards is the only Englishman ever to have been elected to the Académie Française, to which he was inducted in 2014. While holding a chair at the Collège de France (2002-2013), he produced a stream of books in French on Shakespeare and on English poetry more generally, but also on such topics as émerveillement (marvelling) and happiness, in literature, art and music. Prior to that, while he was Professor of English at Warwick, he had published three books in English exploring the spiritual aspects of poetry. A recent book, in French, is Bible et poésie (2016). Our study-day will consider some of the issues raised by his work, in particular: the possibility of a Christian poetics, poetry and émerveillement, the Christian poetic tradition in England and France, the position of the bilingual poet, and the unsayable (l’indicible).


9.30 Gather + coffee
10.00 Welcome + introduction
10.15 Session 1: Christian Poetics
David Jasper (Glasgow), ‘Revisiting a Christian Poetics: On the Work of Michael Edwards’

Valentine Cunningham (Corpus Christi College, Oxford), ‘Poiema, Prosopon & Allegoria: Surprises of Pauline Poeticity’

11.30 Session 2: At the Brasserie Lipp

Tom Day (Eton College), ‘“The weird real”: Michael Edwards’s At the Brasserie Lipp’

Peter Davidson (Campion Hall, Oxford), ‘Michael Edwards’ English poems in the English Christian poetic tradition’

12.45 Lunch break (bring sandwiches, or find a pub in North Parade)

14.15 Session 3: The Wider European Context

Michael Parker (OUDCE and Brookes), ‘A Miracle of Itself: Jacques Maritain, Seamus Heaney, Michael Edwards, and Poetic Conception’

Marie Daouda (Oriel College, Oxford), ‘Baudelaire’s émerveillement and the indicible’

Brian Sudlow (Aston), ‘Alternative Ways of Reading Scripture: Michael Edwards and Fabrice Hadjadj’

16.00 Tea

16.15 Response from Michael Edwards, and Round Table

17.00 Conclusion

More details:
This event is part of the Beyond Words Festival: