Talking of Grimm Girls: An illustrated talk

An illustrated talk by Dr Anne Anderson, Visiting Research Fellow at the University of Chichester, in conversation with Professor Bill Gray, Director of the Sussex Centre for Folklore, Fairy Tales and Fantasy. Hear how the gallery’s exhibition Grimm Girls: Picturing the ‘Princess’ came about, the themes within it and gain some insights into Grimm’s Fairy Tales. Wednesday 22 January 2014, 12.30pm-1.30pm. Otter Gallery, University of Chichester Free of charge but please book in advance – email or tel. 01243 816098.

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Sussex Centre assistant during Heather Robbins’s maternity leave

I am delighted to announce that the Sussex Centre assistant during Heather Robbins’s maternity leave will be Kathryn Seal. I am grateful to all the applicants for their interest in the Sussex Centre post, and especially to the six short-listed candidates for making themselves available for interview.

Human Resources and I rigorously checked each applicant against the job criteria and scored each of them. This outcome says less about the quality of the unsuccessful candidates than it does about the number and strength of the field of applicants. I was astounded to have so many highly qualified applicants for a temporary, part-time post.

Since she was a student in English & Creative Writing at the University of Chichester some years ago, Kathryn has had a very successful career in Marketing and Event Management, and has achieved some significant successes in capturing funding. These are skills which will be very helpful to the Sussex Centre in the coming months. I look forward to working with her.

Bill Gray, Director, Sussex Centre for Folklore, Fairy Tales and Fantasy

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Grimm Girls: Picturing the ‘Princess’

Grimm Girls: Picturing the ‘Princess’

Exhibition, Otter Gallery, 23 November 2013 – 26 January 2014

This exhibition will feature the illustrations of six familiar and much-loved fairy-tales – ‘Little Red Riding Hood’, ‘Cinderella’, ‘Snow White’, ‘Sleeping Beauty’, ‘Rapunzel’ and ‘Beauty and the Beast’ – by Grimm, Perrault and other authors. As well as framed pictures, there will also be first edition books and other artefacts of various illustrators, among them Arthur Rackham, Charles Robinson, Mervyn Peake and Mabel Lucie Attwell. ‘Grimm Girls: Picturing the “Princess”’ is curated by Dr Anne Anderson, a Visiting Research Fellow at the University of Chichester, in association with the University’s Department of English & Creative Writing and the Sussex Centre for Folklore, Fairy Tales and Fantasy.

One-day Symposium of leading fantasy and fairy-tale experts Monday 25 November 2013 Kindly sponsored by Scrivener.

Session 1, E124 (4 – 5.30 p.m.), £5/£3 concessions

Maria Nikolajeva, ‘“Iron is stronger than grief, but love is stronger than iron”: Reading fairy-tale emotions through words and illustrations.’

Terri Windling, ‘Into the Woods: One Writer-and-Artist’s Journey into Fairy Tales’.

Session 2, Mitre lecture theatre, (5.45 – 7.30 p.m.), £5/£3 concessions

Jack Zipes, ‘Reinvigorating the Fairy Tale: Radical Visions and Feminist Interpretations in Paintings, Sculptures, and Photography’.

Followed by round-table discussion with all three speakers.

Tickets available from the University’s online store. For more information e-mail

About our sponsor: Scrivener is a content-generation tool that enables users to outline and structure ideas, take notes, view research alongside writing and compose the constituent pieces of a text in isolation or in context. Visit for more information.

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Assistant for Sussex Centre sought

Assistant for The Sussex Centre

Fixed Term Contract (Maternity Cover – up to 6 months) Variable hours, averaging 11 hours per week

Fuller details available on Chichester University website under ‘Jobs’

Whilst situated in Sussex, the Centre brings together writers and scholars from around the globe and is seeking to appoint an administrator with Conference management experience.

The assistant’s role is crucial in helping to maintain an environment for scholarly activity (regional, national and international), including international conferences/symposia, exhibitions, public lectures and seminars. In addition the post holder will maintain (in collaboration with the Director) the Centre’s website, Facebook and Twitter pages, and will assist in the production of the Sussex Centre Newsletter (every two months) and its twice yearly journal Gramarye.

An experienced administrator, with an interest in the subject area, you will ideally have previous experience of event administration, and ideally editing and publishing expertise, in an academic context. Well-developed written and interpersonal skills will be supported by the ability to utilise IT effectively. A flexible approach to working hours will be required during the fixed term contract to meet the changing demands of the project.

Informal enquiries are welcomed by: Professor William Gray, Director of the Sussex Centre for Folklore, Fairy Tales and Fantasy, on 01243 816208, or email:

Closing date: 15 September 2013 Interview date: TBC

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Mother Goose’s British Afterlife


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The Centre’s latest newsletter

The Centre’s latest newsletter is available here

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Issue 3 of Gramarye out now

Issue 3 of Gramarye is now available to buy here

This issue’s contents include:

  • ‘Hans Christian Andersen: It’s Me The Story’s About’, Neil Philip

  • ‘The Well of D’yerree-in-Dowan’, Patrick Ryan

  • ‘Dragons of East and West’, Rosalind Kerven

  • ‘Death and a Pickled Onion’, Jakob Löfgren

  • ‘My Favourite Story When I was Young’, William Gray

  • A review of Sophia Kingshill and Jennifer Westwood’s The Fabled Coast, Jacqueline Simpson

  • A review of Peter Davies’ The Fairies Return, Or, New Tales for Old, Andrew Teverson

  • A review of Philip Pullman’s Grimm Tales for Young and Old, Francisco Vaz da Silva

  • A review of Angela Carter and Decadence, Martine Hennard Dutheil de la Rochère

  • A review of Colin Manlove’s The Order of Harry Potter: Literary Skill in the Hogwarts Epic, Jane Carroll

Not to mention illustrations by Paul Kidby, Edmund Dulac, Edward Burne-Jones, Yvonne Gilbert, Constance Barnes and many more

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The talk on ‘Steampunk’ by Frauke Matz on Tuesday 5 March has had to be cancelled due to illness. We wish Frauke a speedy recovery.

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February/March 2013 Newsletter now online

The February/March 2013 Sussex Centre Newsletter is now online here

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Storytelling, storywriting, storyprinting: Telling tales and the origins of children’s books

Storytelling, storywriting, storyprinting: Telling tales and the origins of children’s books

  • Monday 11 March 2013 5.15 – 7 pm in the Mitre Lecture Theatre, Bishop Otter Campus, University of Chichester

  • Ruth Bottigheimer and Matthew Grenby, Professors at New York and Newcastle respectively, will share the platform at the first ever joint event to be co-hosted by the Sussex Centre for Folklore, Fairy Tales and Fantasy (SCFFF) and the South Coast Eighteenth-Century and Romantic Research Group (SCERRG).

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New Grimms’ article by Jack Zipes available here

A Christmas bonus for this Grimm Year! Please find attached here an article by Professor Jack Zipes entitled “The Forgotten Tales of the Brothers Grimm”, published in The Public Domain Review. We are very fortunate to have his fascinating piece, partly as the result of “insider dealing”! Jack Zipes is of course on the Sussex Centre Advisory Board, and one of the editors of The Public Domain Review is Jonathan Gray, Project Advisor and Technical Coordinator of the Sussex Centre. Enjoy this early present!

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Issue 2 of Gramarye out now

Issue 2 of Gramarye is now available to buy here. This issue is a special illustrated edition featuring work by Brian Froud, Alan Lee, Mel Grant, Arthur Rackham, Adelaide Claxton, Margaret Jones, Edmund Dulac and many more. This issue’s contents are as follows:

• ‘To tell or not to tell: are fairy tales suitable for children?’, Nicholas Tucker and Jacqueline Simpson continue their BBC Radio 4 debate;

• ‘A review of Brian Froud’s work’, Anne Anderson, curator of Froud/Lee exhibit ‘The Truth About Faeries’;

• An interview with Brian Froud and a preview of his latest work, Trolls;

• ‘Gwyn ap Nudd: Transfigurations of a Character on the way from Medieval Literature to Neo-Pagan Beliefs’, Angelika H. Rüdiger;

• ‘Count Stoneheart and the First Christmas Tree’, a retelling of a traditional tale by best-selling fantasy author Kate Forsyth;

• ‘My Favourite Story when I was young’, Martine Hennard Dutheil de la Rochère;

• ‘Herne’, Steve O’Brien;

• A review of Alan Cunningham’s Traditional Tales (ed Killick), Sophia Kingshill;

• A review of Jan Susina’s The Place of Lewis Carroll in Children’s Literature, Colin Manlove;

• A review of Giselle Liza Anatol’s Bringing Light to Twilight: Perspectives on the Pop Culture Phenomenon, Malini Roy;

• A review of Stephen Asma’s On Monsters: An Unnatural History of Our Worst Fears, Miles Leeson.

Subscribing A two-year subscription will shortly be available – please do let us know if you would be interested in this.

You can also purchase Gramarye from:


Kim’s Bookshop, Chichester

Atlantis, London

Precinct Books, Haying Island

Way Out There And Back, Littlehampton

Lunartique, Bristol

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‘Old, New, Borrowed and Blue: A Fairy-Tale Symposium

ON TUESDAY 26 March, Jack Zipes, Professor Emeritus of German and Comparative Literature at the University of Minnesota and founding father of the academic discipline of Fairy Tale studies, will give a lecture at the University of Chichester. He’ll be preceded by talks by children’s literature expert Nick Tucker and by Jacqueline Simpson, Visiting Professor of Folklore at the University of Chichester. This fairy tale symposium will run as follows

3 p.m. Jacqueline Simpson: ‘Terry Pratchett: Tiffany Aching and the Wee Free Men’

4.15 p.m. Nicholas Tucker: ‘Grimm Parents’

6 p.m. Jack Zipes: ‘Once Upon a Time: Changing the World through Storytelling’.

Tuesday 26 March Bishop Otter Campus, University of Chichester, College Lane, Chichester PO19 6PE More details to follow; if you have any queries please contact Heather Robbins at

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Marina Warner talk in Lausanne

Prof Marina Warner of Essex University is giving a talk in Lausanne entitled “Magicking reality in contemporary fiction in English”. For details see here

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Robert Louis Stevenson Day: 13 November

Robert Louis Stevenson Day will be celebrated for the first time on 13 November (Stevenson’s birthday). As part of the celebrations the Association for Scottish Literary Studies (ASLS) based at the University of Glasgow will be printing copies of Stevenson’s Fables with an Introduction by Professor Bill Gray of Chichester University’s Sussex Centre for Folklore, Fairy Tales and Fantasy. This special edition of Stevenson’s Fables is for distribution at the annual convention of the Modern Language Association, America’s foremost professional association for the study of language and literature. ASLS will also be making an ebook version of this edition of Stevenson’s Fables available free online from RLS Day. Fables

Stevenson had a life-long interest in fables. His books and correspondence show that the fables of Aesop and La Fontaine were part of his mental furniture. One of his earliest published pieces was about fables, a review of Robert Bulwer-Lytton’s Fables in Song. This probably first prompted the twenty-three year old Stevenson to start writing his own fables. Stevenson worked intermittently throughout his life on his own collection of fables, which was published only posthumously and in an incomplete form. In 1888, five years before his death, Stevenson had signed a contract with Longman for an edition to be called The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde, with other fables. However, this was left incomplete at Stevenson’s death in 1894, and was posthumously published in 1896. This is the edition of Stevenson’s Fables that ASLS is making freely available as an ebook on RLS Day.

Prof. Bill Gray is currently preparing a new edition of Stevenson’s Fables for publication next year, as part of Edinburgh University Press’s New Edinburgh Edition of the Collected Works of Robert Louis Stevenson. Bill commented: ‘This new edition of Stevenson’s works is a hugely ambitious project, which intends to provide the definitive version of Stevenson’s works, and will probably run to around forty volumes. I’m delighted to have secured the editorship of volume 18, Stevenson’s Fables and Fairy Tales. In this volume I’ll be working mostly from original manuscripts, so that the text of my edition will be the most accurate version since 1896. Besides some extra fables, there are quite a few fascinating new readings which shed fresh light on Stevenson’s text.’

He continued: ‘Having said that, the 1896 edition, though by no means complete and perfect, has delighted readers for 117 years, so the free ebook version available on 13 November is certainly worth having. Stevenson’s Fables are irreverent, quirky and pungent. Some of them are very short and pithy; others are longer stories, and appropriately included in a volume with Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde. They are haunting, thought-provoking and superbly written.’

He quipped: ‘Until the paperback version of the New Edinburgh Edition version of Stevenson’s Fables and Fairy Tales is available in a year or two, this version is the one to have. Perfect bedtime reading on dark November nights!’

Not only will the free ebook of the Fables be available on 13 November, Robert Louis Stevenson Day will also be celebrated by special project organized by the ASLA:

‘”The first ever Robert Louis Stevenson Day will take place on 13 November, and the Association for Scottish Literary Studies would like to invite you to join the celebrations by snapping some Stevensonia photos and posting them on our Facebook page for everyone to enjoy – use the link below. Anything related to Stevenson is fair game – sights that could be from one of his books, essays, short stories or poems, places you think he might like, or particular items that remind you of his life and work. Stevenson’s literature was international – we welcome photos taken anywhere in the world! Just be sure to describe or tag the photo so we know what your idea is. You can post photos directly from your phone or camera, or via Instagram or other editing apps, and upload as many as you like. The project will run until Stevenson Day on November 13th, so you can start posting any time!”

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