Join novelist and creative writing lecturer, Dr Ellen Wiles to hear about her latest book Live Literature: The Experience and Cultural Value of Literary Performance Events from Salons to Festivals.
Ellen Wiles is a novelist, creative writing lecturer, anthropologist, and curator. She teaches at the University of Exeter. Her latest book, Live Literature: The Experience and Cultural Value of Literary Performance Events from Salons to Festivals (Palgrave, May 2021), asks why in-person literary events have become so popular and so central to literary culture in the digitalising 21st century, and takes readers along to two very different events through experiential literary ethnographies: Hay Festival and the Polari Salon.
Before focusing on writing and research, Ellen worked as a barrister for seven years, specialising in public law and human rights. She has worked on international legal projects including for an AIDS orphan charity in Zambia, in a refugee camp court in Thailand, on the Botswana’s Bushmen’s trial contesting their eviction from ancestral lands, and in Myanmar training lawyers on human rights. Ellen also previously worked as a professional flute player and read Music at Oxford, where she busked to pay her way.