The Perse School

F.R. Leavis Society opens its doors

23 Jan 2015

Yesterday saw the inaugural meeting of the F.R. Leavis Society; a new society for Sixth Form students.

Following on from some successful weekly extension sessions for students applying for English university courses last term, the F.R. Leavis Society was born. The society is named after F.R. Leavis, an Old Persean and influential literary critic of the twentieth century, who championed seriousness and moral depth in literature.

The aim of the club is to enrich A level students’ understanding of the critical debates surrounding English studies, as well as providing students with the opportunity to study texts that don’t appear on the A level syllabus in more detail. It is open to all students with an interest in English, and its subject matter will also appeal to students studying related arts subjects, including history, politics and philosophy.

The first meeting introduced students to aesthetics and criticism, raising questions such as ‘what is a work of art’, ‘is it possible to form a judgement of a work of art’ and ‘what is the role of the critic’. These discussions were brought to life using examples from Coleridge, Descartes and Barthes.

Subsequent meetings this year will look at diverse writers and philosophers from Plato to Borges, Hume to Keats, providing students with a fascinating insight into critical debates in the literary world.

FR Leavis

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