Wednesday, September 07, 2011

Speaking Frankly

 The Frank Sargeson Memorial Lectures 2003-2010
Edited by Sarah Shieff
Frank Sargeson (1903—1982) was a mentor to many of our past and current writers, including Janet Frame, C K Stead and Kevin Ireland. The subjects of the memorial lectures range from his generosity, how the Great New Zealand novel developed, the influences on his writing, the place of literary house museums and the value of reading to our lives. It includes papers from Elizabeth Aitken Rose, Christine Cole Catley, Kevin Ireland, Lawrence Jones, Michael King, Graeme Lay, Owen Marshall and Peter Wells.
Commemorating him, the Buddle Findlay Sargeson Fellowship for writers is awarded annually.
SPEAKING FRANKLY: The Frank Sargeson Memorial Lectures 2003-2011 is part of Cape Catley’s Sargeson Collection.

Frank Sargeson's place in our literature, and literature’s place in his life: close-ups by friends and fellow-writers merge in this lecture series with bigger-picture reflections to give a varied but vivid and remarkably consistent impression of the man and the Takapuna bach which, for several crucial decades of the 20th century, was the still point around which the literary consciousness of New Zealand seemed to revolve. C K Stead
About the editor
SARAH SHIEFF teaches in the Department of English, University of Waikato. She directs the University of Waikato’s programme in New Zealand Studies and edits the Journal of New Zealand Literature. She is convenor of the Frank Sargeson Memorial Lectures.
Speaking Frankly will be launched on Thursday 15 September following the 9th Annual Frank Sargeson Memorial Lecture at the University of Waikato, this year given by the Poet Laureate, Ian Wedde.
The idea to turn the lectures to date into a book was the brainchild of Sargeson’s close friend and literary executor and heir Dame Christine Cole Catley, who herself was the sixth speaker in the series. This year’s lecture takes place at the Gallagher Academy of Performing Arts, 5.30pm. The evening is open to the public, people should rsvp to
I was fascinated and delighted by these lectures. I suggest though that it is best to let some time elapse between reading each one. Perhaps confine yourself to reading one a day as I did. This is Chris Cole Catley's (left)  last piece of published work. She was able to see the advance copies before she died. I see the book  as a memorial to her and will treasure my copy.

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