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Inspiring creative writing opportunity consolidated Platform+ pupils’ love for literature



Inspiring creative writing opportunity consolidated Platform+ pupils’ love for literature

27 April 2022

Westminster’s Platform+ pupils attended a discussion led by an expert on post-colonial literature, followed by a creative writing workshop.

“The session was not at all what I expected it to be. It was something unique and different” Samrin (Platform+ pupil) said.

She added “The university professor was brilliant at keeping us engaged and interested in the novels and helped us understand the importance they have in current times.

“It felt refreshing to see someone from an ethnic minority background in her status and someone so proud of their background and ethnicity. As someone who has always struggled to find representation of south-east Asian females in the world of literature and liberal arts, it was exciting to see someone like her. Her dedication and love for literature was felt in the way she spoke to us.

This was truly eye-opening as I usually read thriller and horror books by authors such as Stephen King. I never thought that I would be interested in reading historical books, but her enthusiasm fascinated me and drove me to investigate historical literature. One of her suggestions was Midnight’s Children which was also one of the three books we looked into. She mentioned how it was an amazing book, and I will definitely be looking into it during the summer holiday. We went into further detail about how history has had an impact on writers; and how that influenced the way authors would write and articulate their feelings. For the first time, I recognised how substantial of an impact war and struggle can create on authors and their literature.

We read the first chapter from three different books which included; A House for Mr. Biswas by V.S. Naipaul, The God of Small Things by Arundhati Roy, and Midnight’s Children by Salman Rushdie.

All of which were written during the post-colonial era – the historical period which took place during the aftermath of Western colonialism.

The books helped give a unique insight into how the history of one’s country was able to impact the thoughts and perceptions of their writing, which in turn allowed us as readers to understand how the people at the time felt about the aftermath of the colonial era.

We discussed the confusion felt by many and how people tried to erase the history that the west left behind and go back to their indigenous origins. The professor did an amazing job at helping us understand this history. At the end of the session, we had the chance to ask the professor questions about her own life and experience, which she shared with us. Giving us an insight into her childhood and education. After her session had ended, we had almost half an hour to start a piece of creative writing about an event that reshaped us. I decided to write about an event which took place when I was quite young and how that came to reshape me into who I am today and how I deal with problems. The professor was an inspiring woman, and it was amazing to hear her thoughts on post-colonial literature.”

The Platform+ programme is an academic enrichment and extension programme, which is delivered across STEM and Liberal Arts subjects, on ten Saturdays throughout the year from January of Year 10 to October of Year 11. For further information about this initiative at Westminster, please see the website https://www.westminsterplatform.org.uk/platform-plus/

Inspiring creative writing opportunity consolidated Platform+ pupils’ love for literature

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