Skip to main content

British Academy Lecture 2022: Thinking Through Terror

Public Lecture
Thursday 5 May 2022, (17:00) 17:15-19:30
Esther Simpson Building

LAHRI are delighted to be hosting the 2022 British Academy Lecture.  This year our guest speaker will be Professor Preti Taneja. 

Delivered by the most outstanding academics in the UK and beyond, the British Academy’s flagship lecture programme showcases the very best scholarship in the humanities and social sciences.

Professor Preti Taneja taught writing to men in high security prison for three years. Her programme co ordinator was Jack Merritt, who was killed in a terrorist atrocity at Fishmonger’s Hall, London, 2019, during an event for Learning Together, the Cambridge University prison education programme he worked for. The next morning, Preti found out the perpetrator was Usman Khan, one of her former prison-writing students. Released on license, Khan had been under surveillance by MI5, police and probation. During the inquests, it was found that Cambridge University was considered what has been termed 'a protective factor' by authorities for him on the outside.

In this lecture and with reference to her new book AFTERMATH, Preti thinks through terror to consider questions of education, the role of writing, and of dignity, justice, grief and culpability in the context of systemic political harms; and the ethics, aesthetics and politics of making narrative in a time of complex and highly racialised trauma in the UK.

About the Speaker

Preti Taneja

Image courtesy of Ben Gold.

Preti Taneja is a writer and activist, and Professor of World Literature and Creative Writing at Newcastle University. Her novel WE THAT ARE YOUNG (Galley Beggar Press, 2017) won the UK’s Desmond Elliott Prize, and was listed for awards including the Folio Prize, Republic of Consciousness Prize (UK), the Shakti Bhatt First Book Prize (India) and Europe’s premier award for a work of world literature, the Prix Jan Michalski. It has been translated into several languages and is published in the USA by AA Knopf. Her second book, AFTERMATH on the language of trauma, terror, prison and abolition written following the London Bridge terror attack in 2019, is part of the Undelivered Lecturers series from Transit Books USA, and will be published in the UK by And Other Stories in April 2022. AFTERMATH has been critically acclaimed as a 'major landmark in British narrative non-fiction' (Max Porter). Preti is co chair of the PEN Translation Advisory Group and a Contributing Editor at The White Review magazine.

If you are interested in attending this event then you can book your place via Eventbrite now.

This event includes a reception for all attendees after the lecture.