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‘Saying what a lot of us feel’: Two Centuries (or so) of Manx Satirical Poetry 13 November 2006

Dr Susan Lewis, of the Centre for Manx Studies, will continue Manx National Heritage’s winter lecture programme with a public lecture on the use of poetry as a political and social commentary in the 18th and 19th centuries, which will take place at the Manx Museum on 17th November 2006 at 7.30pm.

Poetry has long been an important mode of popular expression in the Isle of Man. Significant within this poetic tradition is the creation and performance of satirical verse which to this day is used to express public concern for political folly or organisational greed, and possibly – as Alexander Pope hoped – to deter the perpetrators from repeating their mistakes.

Dr. Susan Lewis commenced her research into the fascinating genre of Manx Satirical Poetry whilst funded by the Manx Heritage Foundation. Her research has followed the hundreds of works which are now recorded, on subjects as diverse as a hated Game Bill, Keys’ reform, Local Option, pre-war battles over refuse bins, property development and ‘experts’.

Anthea Young, Education Services Officer for Manx National Heritage said:

“The evening promises to be filled with many intriguing and enlightening accounts of how satirical verse was used to convey feelings of the populous whilst detailing the political climate of the Island within the 18th and 19th Centuries”

Drawing on the author’s recent study of this revealing material this lecture will present examples old and new of this rich vein of ridiculing verse, and through them will take a ‘grass roots’ look at moments in Manx political life from 1765 to the present day.

The lecture will start at 7.30pm and will be held at the Manx Museum Lecture Theatre. Doors open at 7pm and admission is free of charge.

The Manx Museum is open all year from 10am to 5pm, Monday to Saturday, with the exceptions of Christmas Day, Boxing Day and New Years Day and is part of the award-winning Story of Mann.

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