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The Place of Birds: Nature Writers on Birds and Our Love of Place

Venue: Online

An 'in conversation' event on the subject of birds and place in both historical and contemporary contexts with nature writers. Led by medievalist Michael Warren (Honorary Fellow, Birkbeck). Online.

An 'in conversation' event between Birkbeck honorary fellow medievalist Michael Warren and two other nature writers on the subject of birds and place in both historical and contemporary contexts. Listen to readings from the three participants' books alongside broad-ranging discussion between the authors (and with the audience) about how birds have always played a profound role in affecting and shaping our shared cultural senses of places.  
Michael J. Warren is honorary research fellow with the Department of English, Theatre and Creative Writing, where he researches birds in medieval place and place-names. He is also a series editor of Medieval Ecocriticisms, a new environmentally focused journal in medieval studies, for which publication he edited the inaugural issue, on the theme of weather. He is the author of Birds in Medieval English Poetry, and is currently writing The Cuckoo's Leah, a narrative nonfiction book about his personal connections to places through birds.  
Mary Colwell is a writer and producer of TV, radio and internet programmes, specialising in the areas of natural history and the environment. She has made major Radio 4 series such as Natural Histories, Saving Species and Shared Planet. For TV she produced British Isles – A Natural History, Bill Oddie Goes Wild, Wildlife On One and Natural World. Her first book, John Muir – The Man Who Saved America’s Wild Places, was published in 2014. Curlew Moon, about Mary’s 500 mile walk to raise awareness about the decline of curlews in Britain and Ireland, was published in April 2018, and Beak, Tooth and Claw: Living with Predators in Britain in 2021, both by William Collins.  
Jeremy Mynott is the author of Birdscapes: Birds in Our Experience and Imagination (2009), described by the Guardian reviewer as ‘the finest book written on why we watch birds’; Birds in the Ancient World: Winged Words (2018), shortlisted for the Wolfson History Prize; and most recently, The Consolation of Nature: Spring in the Time of Coronavirus (2020), a Guardian ‘Book of the Year’. His earlier professional career was in publishing at Cambridge University Press, where he became editorial director, then chief executive. He is an Emeritus Fellow of Wolfson College, Cambridge.  
All three contributors are members of New Networks for Nature. 

Michael J. Warren;

Mary Colwell;

Jeremy Mynott

For all three authors:

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This event is part of Arts Week 2022.

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