On Demand until Sunday 14th March 2021
Bloomsbury has long divided opinion. To some they are a privileged elite, unoriginal and self-absorbed. To others they are at they were at the vanguard of modernism, decades ahead of the social, moral and artistic codes of the day. Leonard Woolf wrote that the Bloomsbury group were “A largely imaginary group of persons… with largely imaginary characteristics”. This series of talks strips back the layers of mythology surrounding the Bloomsbury group and goes back to source. This is the Bloomsbury group in their own words.
This mini-series of talks will explore extracts from books, essays, articles, letters and diaries written by different members of the Bloomsbury group. These are informal and relaxed sessions, open to all, with no need to read anything in advance. Simply log in, settle down with your tea or coffee, and immerse yourself in literature, thoughts and ideas with our reader-in-residence Holly Dawson. You will be sent a link and passcode in your e-ticket.
Originally broadcast on Sunday 31st January 2021.
Friendship: conflict & collaboration
‘If I had to choose between betraying my country and betraying my friend, I hope I should have the guts to betray my country.’ E M Forster
For Bloomsbury, friendship was everything, more important than family, more important than sex. The closed intimacy of the Bloomsbury group created a fertile environment where new and radical ways of thinking were born, debated and shaped. In this first session we unravel the bonds that held the Bloomsbury Group together. As we place ideas of friendship and kinship at the heart of the success of the group, we ask: what did friendship mean to them? How did their pursuit of new ways to live challenge their friendships? How did their relationships fuel their ground breaking work?