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Challenging the Canon

This unique mini-series aims to challenge the literary canon by posing the thorny question 'why should we study...?' to experts at the University of Oxford. Beginning with the overarching question 'why should we study the humanities?' and moving on to illuminating discussions about key writers such as Dickens and Shakespeare, these podcasts will introduce you to new perspectives on classic literature. A perfect study companion for prospective undergraduates, lifelong learners and literary enthusiasts everywhere.

# Episode Title Description People Date Media Files
1 Why should we study Dickens? Dr Robert Douglas-Fairhurst of Magdalen College, Oxford, discusses his current research and proposes why we should still study Dickens. Robert Douglas-Fairhurst, Ilana Lassman 31 Jul 2013
  • (15.98 MB)
2 Why should we study Shakespeare? Dr Emma Smith of Hertford College, Oxford, discusses her current research and proposes why we should still study Shakespeare. Emma Smith, Ilana Lassman 31 Jul 2013
  • (13.84 MB)
3 Why should we study Chaucer? Dr Laura Ashe of Worcester College, Oxford, discusses her current research and proposes why we should still study Chaucer. Laura Ashe, Ilana Lassman 31 Jul 2013
  • (19.06 MB)
4 Why should we study Postcolonial Literature? Professor Elleke Boehmer of Wolfson College, Oxford, discusses her current research and proposes why we should study Postcolonial writers such as Achebe. Elleke Boehmer, Sarah Wilkin 31 Jul 2013
  • (12.19 MB)
5 Why should we study Johnson? Professor Ros Ballaster of Mansfield College, Oxford, discusses her current research and proposes we should still study Samuel Johnson. Ros Ballaster, Sarah Wilkin 31 Jul 2013
  • (13.2 MB)
6 Why should we study the humanities? For those wanting a further challenge, Professor Helen Small of Pembroke College, Oxford, discusses the difficulties facing the study of the humanities today. Helen Small, Ilana Lassman 31 Jul 2013
  • (16.17 MB)
7 Why should we study medieval romance? Dr Nicholas Perkins of St Hugh's College, Oxford, discusses his current research and proposes why we should still study medieval romance. Nicholas Perkins, Sarah Wilkin 12 Aug 2013
  • (17.33 MB)
8 Why should we study Elizabethan Theatre? Professor Tiffany Stern of University College, Oxford, discusses her current research and proposes why we should still study Elizabethan Theatre. Tiffany Stern, Ilana Lassman 19 Aug 2013
  • (15.91 MB)
9 Information about Great Writers Inspire Further information about the educational resource: http://writersinspire.org. Sarah Wilkin 29 Aug 2013
  • (523.68 KB)
10 Why should we study Old English Literature? Dr Francis Leneghan of St Cross College, Oxford, discusses his current research around Beowulf and proposes why we should still study Old English Literature. Francis Leneghan 07 Nov 2013
  • (13.07 MB)