Music History Minus Beethoven?

I recently wrote a blog post for Corymbus on the possibility of writing music history without Beethoven. There's an excerpt below, and the full article can be accessed here. ‘For nearly two centuries’, musicologist Scott Burnham writes in his book Beethoven Hero, ‘a single composer has epitomized musical vitality, becoming the paradigm of Western compositional... Continue Reading →


A year without Shakespeare?

I’ve just come back from the Sage Gateshead, where I was at Radio 3’s Free Thinking Festival for my last official outing as a New Generation Thinker. It was a little different to the essays and discussion shows I’d done so far: we all had to come up with a “controversial idea” for an academic... Continue Reading →

Bob Dylan & the Nobel Prize

Bob Dylan caused controversy this week after being awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature. In a piece for the Huffington Post, I argue that it was a good decision to give Dylan the Nobel. It acknowledges that lyrics are literature, and points towards the central role that songs can play in political discourse. The full... Continue Reading →

Interdisciplinarity and co-authorship: why we need co-authorship in the humanities

Interdisciplinarity is something of a buzz-word in academia at the minute. In universities across the UK disciplinary boundaries are becoming increasingly porous, with multiple institutions setting up hubs and programmes designed to encourage cross-faculty interaction. To use just two examples from my own field (besides TORCH at Oxford), Nottingham University has set up a Centre... Continue Reading →

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