Reading and Interpretation series

‘Reading and Interpretation’ is a University of York group for staff and postgraduate students interested in how and why we read literature. Discussions will explore questions such as: What are the pleasures of reading, and do they differ from the pleasures of interpretation? Is there ever a responsibility not to interpret? And what are the conditions, restrictions, and dangers of interpretation?

Each meeting will focus on a short piece by a theorist or philosopher who has changed the way we read and interpret literature. Faculty members are invited to introduce and chair the discussion.

The group emerged from a common interest in how we read after Freud, exploring ideas of the unconscious, surface and depth, and meaning in literature. This year we are expanding the scope to consider a broader array of literary theorists and philosophers who have challenged our theories and praxes of interpretation.

Seminars are hosted in the Berrick Saul Building (BS/007) on the Heslington West Campus of the University of York and begin at 6:30pm, unless stated otherwise. Interested staff and postgraduate students from any university are welcome to attend.

For more information and copies of readings please see the ‘Events’ page or contact Alex Alonso ( or Doug Battersby (


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