Letters From America


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With Diana Evans, Richard Scott and Polly Stenham

This year’s annual Hawthornden event sees three British writers discuss the effect of American writers Toni Morrison, Walt Whitman and Tennessee Williams on their work. Their discussion celebrates the power of words to travel seas, moving between generations and literary forms.

Diana Evans is the author of 26a, and The Wonder. Her novel Ordinary People was shortlisted for the Women’s Prize for Fiction, the Rathbones Folio Prize and the Orwell Prize for Political Fiction, and won the South Bank Sky Arts Award.

Richard Scott’s pamphlet Wound won the Michael Marks Poetry Award 2016. Soho is his first collection and was shortlisted for the T. S. Eliot Prize in 2018.

Polly Stenham is a playwright, screenwriter and director. Her plays include That Face at the Royal Court, and Julie, an adaptation of August Strindberg’s Miss Julie, at the National Theatre in 2018.

Chaired by Shahidha Bari, a writer, academic and critic, whose book Dressed: The Secret Life of Clothes was published in 2019.

We are grateful to the Hawthornden Charitable Trust for sponsoring this event.

In partnership with The Royal Society of Literature

Images: Diana Evans © Charlie Hokinson, Polly Stenham © Laura Pannack, Richard Scott


Name: Letters From America
Where: Knowledge Centre
The British Library
96 Euston Road
Show Map      How to get to the Library
When: -
Enquiries: +44 (0)1937 546546