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August 2015

Black History Month workshop is inspirational spark behind new book of poetry written by Kingston University students

Posted Friday 28 August 2015

Black History Month workshop is inspirational spark behind new book of poetry written by Kingston University students

A poetry workshop to celebrate Black History Month has been the catalyst to encourage a group of Kingston University students to publish their first book of poetry.

The book, Streams of Consciousness, is a compilation of poems by nine students from across Kingston University's five faculties who have collaborated together under the very apt name of Kindred Spirits.

Award-winning poets Deanna Rodgers and Sabrina Mahfouz collaborated with the students on some of the pieces, adding their experience to the students' passions.

Rui Jaime, a biochemistry student, arranged the original poetry workshop last year and has been instrumental in getting the book published.

"It started as a group of people with little or no experience of writing poetry and we surprised ourselves with what we were capable of creating," Rui said. "It seemed a waste to let all the talent disappear without being seen so we decided to write the book. Deanna and Sabrina heard about it and were so impressed with the writing they asked to be a part of it, which is a huge compliment and endorsement of everyone's work."

Four of the student poets that have contributed to Streams of Consciousness

Currently only available to buy online, Streams of Consciousness will be available in bookshops later this summer and an audio version is also due for release this year.

The Union of Kingston Students and the University's Widening Participation Team helped to cover some of the costs of the book publication. Rui said: "We are very grateful for all the support that the University has given us. A combination of their support and our hard work has culminated in this publication and I am very proud to be a part of it."

Find out more about studying Creative Writing at Kingston University


Kingston University singers and musicians hit a high note at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe

Posted Friday 21 August 2015

Kingston University singers and musicians hit a high note at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe

Kingston University ensembles have enjoyed sell out success at this year's Edinburgh Festival Fringe. The Twist Singers and the trumpet section of the Kingston University Brass Ensemble showcased their talents north of the border on a successful second trip to the annual arts spectacular.


Kingston University receives Race Equality Charter Award

Posted Friday 14 August 2015

Kingston University receives Race Equality Charter Award

Kingston University has been awarded the Race Equality Charter Bronze Award by the Equality Challenge Unit (ECU). This is the first year the Charter Award has been given and Kingston University is one of just eight higher education institutions to achieve it.


Kingston University proves popular choice as race for remaining few degree places in Clearing continues

Posted Thursday 13 August 2015

Kingston University proves popular choice as race for remaining few degree places in Clearing continues

Hotline operators at Clearing headquarters are being kept busy as thousands of hopeful students call in eager to secure one of the few remaining places on Kingston University's degree programmes.


New £55m landmark building at Kingston University's Penrhyn Road campus gets go ahead

Posted Wednesday 12 August 2015

New £55m landmark building at Kingston University's Penrhyn Road campus gets go ahead

Kingston University has received the go ahead for a new £55 million building and landscaping scheme at its Penrhyn Road campus that will transform the learning environment.


Kingston University's sports science and nutrition courses ranked top in the country for student satisfaction in National Student Survey

Posted Wednesday 12 August 2015

Kingston University's sports science and nutrition courses ranked top in the country for student satisfaction in National Student Survey

Kingston University's sports science and nutrition degrees have taken top spots on the podium in the latest National Student Survey, with third year undergraduates the most satisfied in England and Wales. Both subjects carried off the highest honours in their respective fields, with 100 per cent student satisfaction ratings in the annual survey. That score was matched by a trio of other high performers - computer science (games programming), geography and mechanical engineering - which also received a maximum 100 per cent satisfaction rating.


Clearing keeps twin brothers' Kingston University business degree dreams on track

Posted Friday 7 August 2015

Clearing keeps twin brothers' Kingston University business degree dreams on track

Clearing has proved to be just the business for twin brothers Damiano and Davide Laganà, 19, who are flying high after completing the first year of their management degrees at Kingston University. It's all a far cry from this time last year when the two star students - who have both secured top marks for their coursework - had just missed the grades they needed for their first degree preferences.


Kingston University professor Will Brooker transforms himself into pop icon David Bowie for year-long study of music legend

Posted Wednesday 5 August 2015

Kingston University professor Will Brooker transforms himself into pop icon David Bowie for year-long study of music legend

Have you ever wanted to live the life of a famous pop star? Or learn more about an artist's state of mind while they were in the process of creating a career-defining piece of work?

That's exactly what an academic from Kingston University is doing as part of a year-long research project. Film and cultural studies expert Professor Will Brooker will cover 40 years of music legend David Bowie's career during a year-long study, spending a few months at a time experiencing specific moments in the star's life.

"The idea is to inhabit Bowie's head space at points in his life and career to understand his work from an original angle, while retaining a critical and objective perspective at the same time - a kind of split persona perhaps," Professor Brooker explained.

Professor Brooker discussed the project with Australian network ABC while he was in Melbourne to speak at the David Bowie symposium taking place as part of the David Bowie Is exhibition at the Australian Centre for the Moving image.

Part of the process of the research involves only consuming the cultural content Bowie would have encountered during each period. For example, Professor Brooker is currently only listening to music, watching films and reading books produced before 1974 to get a deeper insight into Bowie's creative thought process. It was during this period that the star became interested in Philadelphia soul, leading to the production of the Young Americans album and the creation of the Thin White Duke character. "If you're reading some strange science fiction and books about magic, you can kind of get into Bowie's head. It's sometimes quite a strange place, a dangerous place, a place you wouldn't want to live for too long," Professor Brooker said.

Professor Brooker as David BowieHe has also been dressing as Bowie, wearing the same make-up, experimenting with sleep deprivation, attempting to follow Bowie's dubious diet of milk and red peppers and has even started to take singing lessons. However, some aspects of the icon's life are more difficult recreate. "His mansion in Beckenham has been demolished, for instance, and I'm unlikely to have a fling with Mick Jagger," Professor Brooker said. "However it is possible to engage with and get a feel for his experiences without immersing oneself to a dangerous extent."

It was during his teenage years that Professor Brooker first came into contact with Bowie, repeatedly listening to a cassette of the Let's Dance album on his Walkman. Looking back, he believes he felt an affinity to Bowie because he achieved a 'balance between success and strangeness, between a necessary commercial pragmatism and a core of personal authenticity'.

Professor Brooker is not sure how Bowie would feel about his latest project: "I hope he would be interested in and amused by my research," he said. "I do feel, though, that everything he says and does in public is performance, so if he did hear about it, we would be unlikely to know what he genuinely thought."

  • Find out more about studying music at Kingston University.
  • Find out more about research at Kingston University.

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