The new LJMU English Academic Journal is here!

The new LJMU English Academic Journal is here!

It's Autumn again: time for a new academic year, a new start, and, of course, a new diary. The latest edition of our world-renowned English Academic Journal is ready and waiting, fallen from its tree like a ripe fruit... (ok, enough). So if you're studying English at LJMU, please make sure you pick up your very own free copy at Induction. As always, the EAJ is full of crucial information about the English Department, and about how to navigate smoothly and serenely through student life in Liverpool and beyond. The journal has been designed by students for students (with a little bit of help from Jo Croft), and it includes literary 'quotes of the week' as well as spaces for you to write out your timetable, reading lists, PDP sessions etc. This year's edition has extra note pages (as requested by you), and even has a special section for your own literary compositions. There are QR codes linked to this website, and - most importantly...
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‘Strength Through Variety’: LJMU’s In the Red Magazine

‘Strength Through Variety’: LJMU’s In the Red Magazine

Now in its fifteenth incarnation, In the Red Magazine champions Liverpool's Student Writing Community in an annual prose and poetry collection. The objective of this year's edition is to celebrate 'Strength Through Variety'. That's not just prose, poetry, comedy and music, but all forms of art so long as it's expressive and true to the person who created it. Poignant essays? Heart shattering poems? Hilarious haikus? Bring in a canvas painting! We'll display it for you. If it comes from a place inside and you feel you can share it with us, we'll humbly respect that honour by being your limbo champions, bending over backwards 'til our necks touch the ground to ensure you get the recognition you deserve and in turn making you a part of something every single one of us can be proud of. If you have any ideas for content regarding our events, talk to us. If you have unique skills beyond putting pen to paper and expressing yourself (and...
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Welcome Freshers 2016!

Welcome Freshers 2016!

Welcome to LJMU English! This tab along with the T.E.A tab are your first stops for all the information you'll need for your first few weeks. Beyond Freshers, us lot over at T.E.A (check out our actual faces under 'Student Interns' down the side there ----->) will be providing you with lots of helpful tips and insights into studying at LJMU. To get you started here's some very helpful stuff: Induction Week:     The Blackboard Community Site is where all of your course-related info and induction timetables will appear, and you'll receive details of how to gain access when you receive your official Welcome Pack from the University towards the end of August. Don't worry if you are struggling to understand Blackboard, we all are, it's a complicated beast and you will soon be able to just about tolerate it (that's as good as it gets with Blackboard, sorry). Once you are an enrolled, inducted, official LJMU student we can tell you all our deepest, darkest secrets (probably). By then you will undoubtedly...
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Welcome to T.E.A.

Welcome to T.E.A.

Hello and welcome to the official page of The English Appendage - or T.E.A. for short! We are a group of third year students here to help you with the transition to university. As our name suggests, we are an "appendage" to the English department and will be working alongside them to ensure that your first year goes as smoothly as possible, although we can't guarantee that there won't be a few bumps! We can offer that bit of extra help with the initial stress of getting your brain back into gear as getting started in university can be a bit full on. Whether you've come straight from sixth form, taken a year out to find yourself or have spent numerous years using your brain for literally anything else! We will be active on Twitter, Facebook, and right here posting academic hints and tips about numerous topics about how to get started on your reading and writing and how to survive university whilst...
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Reading English Module.

Reading English Module.

This is quite a fast-paced module, structured in three parts - focussing in turn on poetry (including 'V' by Tony Harrison - amazing, and Shakespeare's Sonnets), prose (Wuthering Heights - see T.E.A's separate post for this) and drama (Endgame by Samuel Beckett). This module, for me, felt quite different from the others, due to the varied material. Kate Walchester says: "The aim of 'Reading English' is to ease your transition into the undergraduate study of English Literature by introducing you to a wide range of texts from different periods, refreshing your knowledge of literary terms and techniques, and supporting you as you write your first research essay". This module may feel like a bit of a rollercoaster, unnerving at times, but it is exactly because of this feeling that the module is so enjoyable. It allows you the opportunity to explore the variations in literature. When it comes to choosing your modules for level 5, you will have a good idea of the different areas of study - for...
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Wuthering Heights by Emily Brontë.

Wuthering Heights by Emily Brontë.

This is one of the texts you will study on the Reading English module. First of all let me just say that this novel is NOT a typical 'chick love story' (as one person put it in my seminar group). Heathcliff is far from the romantic hero, if he can be considered that at all! This is a far more complex story about greed, class, conflict and consequences. Please do not assume that you can watch a TV or film adaptation and know the story. The novel is far more complex, with intricately woven plot and character relationships. These things are never, in my opinion, portrayed correctly on screen and the novel's gothic atmosphere is usually either overlooked or over-done. I admit that Wuthering Heights is sometimes difficult to get into, I had to go back and start again, as I found I had not taken in the first few chapters, but perseverance with this novel is rewarding. There is so...
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Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov

Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov

'Lo-lee-ta'. It is hard to pick a favourite book from the first year of the course, but when people ask me which book I enjoyed the most, Lolita always pops into my head first. Now I know that most will have heard of the book purely for its notoriety and controversial themes, but there is a lot more to this novel. Nabokov has an aesthetic quality hard to beat. Little descriptions that are both simple and stunning. In one line he can create an image that stays with you, 'She was Lo, plain Lo, in the morning, standing four feet ten in one sock.' [In normal circumstances you will need to Harvard reference here]. Try not to be put off by the theme of the novel, although hard to stomach. Humbert Humbert is frequently shown as a monster or something strangely alien and grotesque. But the novel is not a sympathetic portrayal of a paedophile, rather a unique perspective on a...
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Literature in Context

Literature in Context

This module aims to introduce you to methods of critical and contextual reading central to the English programme, and to the range of core skills essential to successful study at university level: at least that's the fancy way of explaining the module. Over the duration of the module you will analyse and compare literature from the 1950s and look at the cultural history of a novel, (it may sound boring but you will probably enjoy it, which is okay!). You will also be looking at how the novel was influenced by what was going on at the time. The pace of the module is set by the short story ‘The Loneliness of the Long-Distance Runner’ which is what your first assignment is on, but don't worry too much: it's only 600 words (the assignment, not the story). The texts that follow from the 1950s are Absolute Beginners by Colin MacInnes, Sam Selvon's The Lonely Londoners and Shelagh Delaney's A Taste of Honey...
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Digital Victorians Module

Digital Victorians Module

This is a new module running in the second semester (2017). Unfortunately I cannot restart my degree to take this module, or add it on to my modules for level 6! Not only does it look amazing but unbelievably helpful in introducing you to research skills early on in your degree. You will have the chance to research through digital sources whilst using social media and 'hands on' blogging to explore the past. If you plan to start reading for this module early, it is best to start with Sydney Padua's The Thrilling Adventures of Lovelace and Babbage: The (Mostly) True Story of the Frist Computer. I have already added this to my 'for fun' reading list too! You will also look at Charles Dickens' Great Expectations.  This will be read on the module in its intended serial form (with week by week analysis), so you do not need to read this in advance (obviously you can, if you like). In this...
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Being a Commuting Student

Being a Commuting Student

Commuting to uni can sometimes be a challenge, especially if you live a bit of a distance away, and have a 9am lecture. It’s not rocket science – you have to get up early. However, you really need to make sure you give yourself enough time to eat and drink first. There is nothing worse than sitting in a lecture and your stomach rumbling! Thankfully if you are in a rush there is The Amazing Georgina – the toast lady in the student zone, who makes the best tea and toast ever . You will also need to get yourself sorted out with a train or bus pass. On a more personal note: It can be a worry that because you're not living in halls you won't meet people. This is not the case, there are ways you can get involved through the LSU, different societies you may be interested in and so on. The LSU have a lot of social events taking...
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Being a Working Student

Being a Working Student

So, the day has finally come, you've got your start date for uni, your first timetable, you're feeling like a giddy 12 year old once again and then it dawns on you... how on Earth am I going to juggle University and a job? The answer: it's actually a lot easier than you may first think. Since I was sixteen, I have had a part time job working for a supermarket chain (legally, I'm not allowed to tell you which one sorry!) and the thought of losing my monthly pay check is just not a welcome one. Regardless of the fact that you're about to get a student loan, there is still that niggling voice at the back of your head saying that you need the extra money and the truth is, it is nice to have it. Even though I could afford to give up my job and live off of my loan, I don't want to. I enjoy knowing...
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Being a Mature Student

Being a Mature Student

I came to university after completing an Access course at college. I had done my A-Levels when I was younger, at which time I decided to take a year out to save money before university. That year turned into many as life took over and bills had to be paid. Many people have asked me, since returning to education, whether I regret not going to uni when I was younger. I can honestly say that I don’t. At 18 years old I was not confident or assertive in anyway, I was not sure what I wanted to do and certainly not prepared for the amount of work involved in university life – if you want to put your all into it. As a mature student I am not distracted by the nightlife (I did all of that in my 20’s) although I do enjoy meals out in Liverpool's many fantastic restaurants! I’m more aware of why I am here (at...
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Feeling daunted? Ineffectual? Inadequate? Don’t panic it’s all fine!

Feeling daunted? Ineffectual? Inadequate? Don’t panic it’s all fine!

My first two weeks at uni were spent walking aimlessly round, lost most of the time and hoping I could find someone I could follow - obviously not in a weird stalker way. I think everyone feels a little out of their depth at times, and you're not alone if you do, it's a common feeling. There have been moments when I have asked myself if I chose the right course, whether I was good enough to be on the course and generally whether I would do well. The truth is you're here on your own merit, you've earned your place: so you are in the right place. Self-doubt is something you simply have to get over in your own time. If you receive a mark on your assignment that you're disappointed with don't be disheartened, the tutors give constructive feedback that you can take on board and use to improve your work next time. The tutors are always happy to talk through...
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How To Dress and Accessorise Like A Literature Student: Our ESSENTIAL Picks

How To Dress and Accessorise Like A Literature Student: Our ESSENTIAL Picks

‘No, I haven’t done the reading for this week’ t-shirt. Dark sunglasses for avoiding eye contact with tutors in seminars when you haven’t done the reading for that week. Knitwear. Lots of knitwear. Chunky knits with pockets big enough to put books in. Fancy bookmarks. If you turn up to uni with sub-par bookmarks you’ll regret it for the rest of your life. This is the big leagues. A large, practical bag. Fashion has no place here, OK? You’ll probably always need to carry at least 15 books at any given time….. Lots of pendant necklaces with literary quotes on them. Everyone’s wearing ‘em. Anything you can find that has a literary quote on it. Just go mad and cover yourself in words, this is who you are now. A pile of books to arrange by your side at all times: 1 dog-eared and very stained to prove you love the classics like a proper literature student, 1 annotated...
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Erasmus Opportunities: Naples, anyone?

Erasmus Opportunities: Naples, anyone?

Dr Filippo Menozzi, our (Italian) English lecturer, has been working to establish a new Erasmus opportunity for future students on the programme (like you, if you're a Fresher in 2016!). This will allow future level 5 students (who enter their second year from 2017/2018 onwards) the chance to spend a term studying in Naples at the University of Naples L'Orientale! I'm so jealous I almost don't want to write this post... The programme (in Naples! Did I mention that?) will be taught in English and you will choose modules from their existing English literature programme. You will be assessed by them, which will obviously go toward your degree in England (unfortunately you will have to return). The assessment styles may differ slightly from those at home, but this will be clarified before you go. As students you will receive help with regard to your accommodation and travel plans, and you'll receive plenty of other information to help you whilst you're there. This opportunity will enable students to...
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Reading Is Good For You

Reading Is Good For You

"Until I feared I would lose it, I never loved to read. One does not love breathing." - Harper Lee, To Kill a Mockingbird. We all have our own stories of how we became readers, whether you were introduced to reading as a child, or came to it of your own free will. The most important thing is that you found books, or did they find you? I have always felt a need to read and have always been surrounded by books. I was always read to as a child, and I can still remember the first book I bought with my own money, Roald Dahl's The Witches. It was not just the ability to disappear into other lands, and to partake in adventures, but something far more intrinsic to my general being. I always have a book on the go and I always have anthologies of poems around me, so that I can pick something up and put it down...
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Your Massive Reading List

Your Massive Reading List

Have you read the book for this week? Have you? Have you read all of the books IN THE WORLD? Because you need to - immediately! You are an English student now and the most important thing about being an English student is making sure that you never do anything other than read, read, read, and read some more. If you haven’t read and made extensive notes on every text on your reading list before the first week of teaching then you have already failed your degree and might as well throw the lot of them in the Mersey right now. Or maybe that’s not true. Maybe everything will be alright. Maybe you don’t need to read anything at all. Just sit back, make a cuppa, and spend the next 72 hours watching Netflix. Or maybe, just maybe, we can find a healthy and reasonable balance here. Getting to grips with the amount of reading you are required to do at degree...
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Film/TV Adaptations.

Film/TV Adaptations.

I have mentioned in my Wuthering Heights post that it is not good to rely on the film or TV version of a book. I stand by this. Reading the book is essential. Films and TV just don't have the time or the scope to convey everything that a book can. I'm sure you already know this as you've chosen English, but it's surprising how many students will try to dodge the reading. During group work on Lolita I was amazed to find that I'd missed a whole scene in the book, as had four others in my group. Whilst one student talked very excitedly about the significance of the scene the rest of us looked at each other, puzzled. The question was then asked, "Where in the book is that?" The student looked sheepish, "I've not read the book, I watched the film" (Groan!). But if you avoid this potential shame, watching a film or TV version can be...
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Worried? Afraid? Made the Wrong Choice?

Worried? Afraid? Made the Wrong Choice?

Now that a few weeks have passed, you're probably fed up of being told to read books. You might even be feeling daunted by the amount of books you have to get through, but the best way to deal with this is simple, just take it one book at a time. The tutors aren't (just) trying to torture you, you DO have to read the books to pass. Remember, you chose English as your degree, so just suck it up. If you're thinking 'OMG I chose the wrong course', and the thought of turning another page fills you with dread, then you probably did. All is not lost - you can probably still change it - but you need to do this ASAP so you don't fall too far behind. If you genuinely want to change courses, go and see your Personal Tutor to sort it straight away. There's no point hanging about and thinking it'll all just work out: be...
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This Is How We Do It: Recipes

This Is How We Do It: Recipes

Whether you're living at home or living in halls it is important to eat well. It's not only good for the body but for the brain too. I know it can be difficult after a long day to go home and cook, and I also know it's far more pleasing at the time to have an extra hour in bed than get up and prepare a breakfast and lunch. I even know how hard it can be to live on a student budget, so here are some helpful recipes (hopefully). You can't live off coffee and alcohol, but we have thrown in some handy cocktail recipes for the weekend, just in case you need them! Lynne's Easy Tuna Pasta: Great for lunch. Ingredients: 2 - 3 tsp Green Pesto, 1 - 2 tbsp mayonnaise, tin of tuna (drained), diced cucumber (approximately a quarter of the cucumber), pepper and tomato (as much as you fancy), a bit of grated cheese, chopped jalapeños (Home Bargains sell these in...
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The Independent Scene: Food and Drink pt. 2

The Independent Scene: Food and Drink pt. 2

I am predominantly vegetarian although I am actually a pescatarian. So, I am writing part two of where is good to eat and drink from a slightly different perspective. Liverpool has so many great places to eat and drink it's hard to choose, thus I am breaking them down a little... My Favourites Breakfast/Brunch: My favourite has got to be Moose Coffee. Situated on Dale Street, it's not too far to walk but far enough from the John Foster building to work up a bit of an appetite: you'll need it as the portions aren't stingy. The New Jersey Moose is my personal fave. It is a plateful of amazing flavour-packed potato hash and oozing runny eggs. They do a wide range of breakfasts, sandwiches, pancakes and waffles. There are a lot of veggie options and you can add extras like smoked salmon and bacon. Be sure to get there with plenty of time to spare though, this place gets full very quick! Dinner/Lunch (depending where you're from):...
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