The Corpse in the Corpus: Dead Bodies in Literature

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Piazza Building (PZA/016)

Heslington East Campus

University of York

York

YO10 5GE

United Kingdom

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From The Epic of Gilgamesh to NCIS, from Homer’s Illiad to Falkner’s As I Lay Dying, depictions of the dead body in literature are almost as old as literature itself. But how have our perceptions of death and dying changed over time? How are these changes reflected in literature’s representation of the dead? And are we now entering a new stage in death’s representation that emphasises the body as physical matter? Drawing on our contemporary fascination with forensic detective fiction and zombie horror, this talk considers whether our current obsession with corpses might cultivate a greater acceptance of material death.

Speaker biography: Nicky Gardiner is an associate lecturer and PhD researcher in literature and critical theory at the University of Huddersfield. His research looks at depictions of the corpse and material philosophy in contemporary literature and he has lectured on this topic at a variety of universities and events across the UK.

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Piazza Building (PZA/016)

Heslington East Campus

University of York

York

YO10 5GE

United Kingdom

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