Free

‘Singing waters: the poetics of water in literature and music’ Jane Southwo...

Event Information

Share this event

Date and Time

Location

Location

Willunga Environment Centre

18 High St

WILLUNGA, South Australia 5172

Australia

View Map

Refund Policy

Refund Policy

Refunds up to 7 days before event

Friends Who Are Going
Event description

Description

This proposed presentation for the Willunga Environment Centre is one with modifications presented at ‘H20: Life and Death. An interdisciplinary conference’ organised by the J.M. Coetzee Centre for Creative Practice, University of Adelaide 15-16 September 2017

From Horace to Arrian, Sappho to Strabo, water has figured in diverse ways—as metaphor, as inspiration, as source of life and death—in writings from antiquity, through to the early-modern period and down to the present day.

Water plays, too, an important role in the music of three composers I will discuss: the river Moldau or Vitava in Czech composer, Bedrich Smetana’s hymn to his country—Ma Vlast; the ocean, from which we come and which sustains us, in Tasmanian composer Matthew Dewey’s ex Oceano, a work he aptly calls ‘a love letter to the Ocean’; and the ocean surrounding Ningaloo Reef, off the rugged coast of north Western Australia, in composer Iain Grandage’s music for The Reef, composed in collaboration with Richard Tognetti, musicians from the ACO2, artists, a film maker, a didgeridoo player, a singer, a photographer, surfers and locals. The Reef has been described as a performance piece centred on one of Australia’s most beautiful natural wonders.

In this presentation I will explore water in the literary imagination from antiquity, through the early-modern period and in the musical imagination of a nineteenth-century and two twenty-first-century composers. I will end my presentation with the theme of ‘ubi sunt’, as I consider what is currently happening to the oceans of the world, of which we—as all human beings—should be the diligent and attentive custodians. My particular focus in this part of my presentation is work being done on the Southern Ocean, the flywheel of the global climate, a key area of exchange of CO2 with the atmosphere across the whole world and of the vast power of the Antarctic Circumpolar Current joining all the world’s oceans.

Formerly Lecturer in French at the University of New England, Armidale, NSW, Jane Southwood has worked in five tertiary institutions in France and Australia. She has delivered papers and published in French and English in France, the UK and Australia, on maritime exploration, on the writings of eminent classicist and environmentalist, Marguerite Yourcenar (1903-1987), on the early-modern period, on the history of medicine and on translation. She received her BA, MA and PhD from the University of Western Australia, where she was on the staff, before leaving to settle in Adelaide, to which she has now returned as an independent researcher and translator and an impassioned devotee of, and spoke person on, the environment.

Share with friends

Date and Time

Location

Willunga Environment Centre

18 High St

WILLUNGA, South Australia 5172

Australia

View Map

Refund Policy

Refunds up to 7 days before event

Save This Event

Event Saved