In the year of the General Strike and Miners’ Lockout, the poet and critic W. J. Gruffudd noted that ‘1926 has been a bleak year for Wales…we had hardly become accustomed to the death of Professor Rees when we had to face the death of Professor J. H. Davies’. With global capitalism facing its greatest crisis since the 1920s, 2008 may yet be remembered as the year in which CREW (The Centre for Research into the English Literature and Language of Wales) launched its blog.
CREW is dedicated to the exploration, discussion and analysis of the English language literature of Wales. The cultural distinctiveness of Wales was, for almost 2,000 years, intrinsically bound up with the Welsh language. But with the emergence of English as a ‘majority’ Welsh language in the twentieth century, a new Anglophone literature was developed. Defining figures in this literature have included Dylan Thomas, Margiad Evans, David Jones, R. S. Thomas, Raymond Williams, Gillian Clarke and Emyr Humphreys. At the beginning of the twenty-first century, this literature may be seen both as complementing the other non-English literatures of the "Anglo-Celtic Archipelago" (Ireland, Northern Ireland, Scotland) and as a local instance of the worldwide proliferation of postcolonial literatures in English.
Our blog is intended as a means to draw attention to conferences, events, readings and so on, to link with past and present students and, hopefully, to share news and views about Welsh writing in English. We hope to develop our links sections, so if you would like to be included please contact Sarah Morse [firstname.lastname@example.org] who will be managing the blog. Future prospective MA and PhD students are encouraged to contact us, and further details about the Centre and its work can be found on the website.