Sunday, February 17, 2013

Oh, to be in Oxford in March!

For this Tolkien conference: 

J. R. R. Tolkien is one of the best known authors of the twentieth century, and his books The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings have entertained and intrigued readers alike for decades, becoming some of the most popular books of all time. Many people will have read these novels, or seen the filmed adaptations, but have had little opportunity to take their interests further. To meet this need the Oxford Tolkien Spring School is being organised by the University of Oxford's English Faculty (where Tolkien taught for most of his career), aimed at those who have read some of Tolkien's fiction and wish to discover more. A series of introductory lectures by world-leading Tolkien scholars have been assembled, to take place in the English Faculty, University of Oxford, over the 21-23 March, 2013. Talks will cover Tolkien's life, his work as an academic, his mythology, the influences of medieval literature on his fiction, his languages, The Hobbit, The Lord of the Rings, and his other lesser known works. There will also be panel discussions looking at Tolkien's place in the the literary canon. There will also be opportunities to see the sights of Oxford that were so important to Tolkien and his colleagues, as well as an introduction to some of the Tolkien collections at the University.

More info here and here!

I certainly look forward to our day in Oxford on our way from York to London on the Catholic Martyrs of England pilgrimage. We will focus more on Blessed John Henry Newman--and of course, the many Catholic Martyrs from Oxford (like St. Edmund Campion)--but Tolkien, Lewis, and the Inklings won't be far from my thoughts, at least.

The itinerary for that day in Oxford includes visiting the Anglican St. Mary's to see the martyr's shrine; Oriel and Trinity Colleges, and the Oxford Oratory. Lunch at the "Bird and the Baby" would fit in nicely, with shopping at St. Philip's Bookstore and Blackwells! The tour's spiritual director, Father Steve Mateja, will celebrate Mass at St. Aloysius, the Oxford Oratory. Should be a splendid day in Oxford!

Father Majeta and I will be on Teresa Tomeo's Catholic Connection radio show one morning this week, and I'll let you know!


  1. When you are visiting Oxford, I hope you'll have time to visit the College at Littlemore, where Bl John Henry Newman was reconciled to the Church by Bl Philip Barberi. The Sisters of the Work are very hospitable, and there is much to see.

    1. The exigencies of tour planning conflicted with my proposal on that stop, Sydney Catholic. From York to Oxford to Littlemore to London was just too much, according to the experts. I enjoyed my visit to The College in 2009 very much. My husband and I had also met the Sisters of the Work during their to Wichita and our visit to Rome!