In the centenary year of the Battle of the Somme, Cardiff BookTalk returns for 2016/17 with an exciting event considering David Jones’s First World War classic, In Parenthesis.
Based on Jones’s own experiences, In Parenthesis recalls the experiences of Private John Ball and his comrades in the Royal Welch Fusiliers from their embarkation for the Somme to their participation in the deadly assault at Mametz Wood. Considered ‘the greatest book about the First World War’ by W. H. Auden and employing a highly allusive mixture of verse and prose, In Parenthesis is an exhilarating read, which challenges generic conventions and received ideas about war.
In the summer of 2016, the Welsh National Opera staged an acclaimed adaptation of Jones’s epic work, which toured across the country. Inspired by this and in collaboration with the Voices of War and Peace project, Cardiff BookTalk is excited to host an event discussing both In Parenthesis and its recent reworking.
To explore In Parenthesis and in particular the challenges of adapting it, we welcome:
- David Antrobus, co-librettist of the Welsh National Opera’s adaptation of In Parenthesis, as well as a director, actor and writer
- Beth McIntyre, senior curator of prints and drawings at the National Museum Wales and curator of the ‘War’s Hell!’ The Battle of Mametz Wood in Art exhibition
- Dr Toby Thacker, Senior Lecturer in Modern European History at Cardiff University and expert on the cultural, political and military history of the twentieth century in Europe
As usual, the main event will be preceded by a reception with tea, coffee and biscuits at 6.30pm in Cardiff University’s School of Optometry and Vision Sciences, Maindy Road, Cardiff CF24 4HQ.