Issue date: 05 November 2002

Hanif Kureishi Wednesday 13 November 2002
Lisa Jardine Wednesday 4 December 2002

The Alternative Series returns to the Watershed Media Centre with two internationally acclaimed speakers. ‘An Evening with Hanif Kureishi’ presents an opportunity to meet the outstanding playwright, filmmaker and writer on 13 December.

Hanif Kureishi’s novels include ‘The Buddha of Suburbia’, ‘Intimacy’ and ‘The Body’. A collection of his non-fiction writings, ‘Dreaming and Scheming’ was published in 2002. His first film (commissioned by Channel 4) ‘My beautiful Launderette’, won the Evening Standard Award for best film, the New York Critics best screenplay award and an Oscar nomination.

On 4 December Lisa Jardine, Professor of Renaissance Studies at Queen Mary, University of London, will speak on ‘Art imitating life: biography’s credentials as history.’

The Alternative Series is organised by the Centre for Critical Theory at the University of the West of England. Centre director, Professor Anthony Elliott said, “We are delighted to be returning to the Watershed Media Centre for a third season. Bringing eminent speakers to town is part of the Centre’s strategy to make critical theory accessible to a wider audience. We expect both evenings to be a sell out so reserve tickets now”.

Both evenings start at 7pm. Tickets cost £6.00 (concessions rate £4.50). Tickets available in advance from Watershed Media Centre tel 0117 925 3845.


Editor’s notes

Hanif Kureishi
England Born 5 Dec 1954

Hanif Kureishi was born in Bromley, South London in 1954. His mother is English, his father Pakistani and the rest of his family live in Karachi. He started writing when he was 12, but also hoped to be a professional cricketer. His other abiding interest is jazz. He studied Philosophy at King's College, London.

Hanif Kureishi's career as a playwright first received encouragement from Peter Gill and David Gothard when he was working as a typist at the Riverside Studios. He won the Thames Television Playwright Award in 1980 for his first full-length play 'The Mother Country', and in the following year became writer-in-residence at the Royal Court. His credits in the theatre include 'Birds of Passage' at Hampstead, 'Outskirts' for the RSC, 'Borderline' which was produced at the Royal Court, and adaptations of Kafka for BBC Radio 3 and of Brecht's 'Mother Courage' which starred Judi Dench for the RSC.

His first film (commissioned by Channel 4), 'My Beautiful Laundrette', was released in London in November 1986 after receiving exceptional critical acclaim at its Edinburgh Festival première. It won the Evening Standard Award for Best Film, and on its release in the USA the following year it won the New York Critics' Best Screenplay Award, as well as an Oscar nomination. The screenplay is published with his collected essays in 'My Beautiful Laundrette and Other Writings'.

Hanif Kureishi's screenplay 'Sammy and Rosie Get Laid' includes his diary's record of the film's making. The diary chronicles the collaboration of writer and director, Stephen Frears, over the production of the film, from which they emerge as a powerful team. 'London Kills Me' is the most recent film written and directed by Kureishi, and was premiered at the 1991 London Film Festival.

Hanif Kureishi's published fiction includes stories in Granta, American Harpers, The London Review of Books and The Atlantic. Hanif Kureishi writes regularly for the New Statesman and Society. His first novel, 'The Buddha of Suburbia', was published in 1990 to wide acclaim and won the Whitbread Best First Novel Award. His television adaptation was broadcast by the BBC in 1993 and received great critical acclaim. Kureishi's second novel, 'The Black Album' was published by Faber and Faber in March 1995. Kureishi co-edited 'The Faber Book of Pop' with Jon Savage in 1995.

Hanif Kureishi's collection of short stories, 'Love in a Blue Time' received lavish praise on publication. Kureishi adapted his short story 'My Son the Fanatic' for a feature film that was released on 1 May 1998. The screenplay of 'My Son the Fanatic' was published in April 1998. His acclaimed novel 'Intimacy' was published in 1998, followed by a collection of short stories, 'Midnight All Day', published in November 1999. His new novel, 'The Body', will be published by Faber in November 2002.

Lisa Jardine

Lisa Jardine is Professor of Renaissance Studies at Queen Mary, University of London, where she is Director of the AHRB Research Centre for Editing Lives and Letters.

Writing in Literary Review, Paul Johnson comments: "Lisa Jardine is a new start on England's literary and historical scene. She has a gift, which so few historians possess, of making the past seem relevant to our own times".

She writes and reviews for the major UK national newspapers and magazines, and has presenting and appears regularly on Arts, History and Current Affairs programmes for TV and Radio. She is currently Chair of Judges for the 2002 Booker Prize.

Her recent books include Ingenious Pursuits: Building the Scientific Revolution (1999) and On a Grander Scale: The Outstanding Career of Sir Christopher Wren (2002).

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