Sir Christopher Frayling to Deliver Two NUI Galway Lectures

Jan 08 2019 Posted: 14:29 GMT

Lectures will be followed by screening of ‘Bride of Frankenstein and ‘Once Upon a Time in the West’

Sir Christopher Frayling, Rector of the Royal College of Art and Professor of Cultural History with the College, will deliver two free public lectures at NUI Galway’s Huston School of Film and Digital Media on Wednesday, 16 and Thursday, 17 January.

The first lecture, ‘Frankenstein - the first two hundred years’ will take place on Wednesday, 16 January at 6pm. Mary Shelley's Frankenstein was first published on New Year's Day 1818. This illustrated lecture will celebrate the novel's 200th birthday by exploring its difficult journey into print, and its colourful afterlife on stage, in films, and within everyday culture. In the era of artificial intelligence, genetic engineering, IVF treatments, robotics, three-parent families and animal-human interfaces, the lecture will argue that the modern creation myth of 'Frankenstein' - the one where it is the scientist who does the creating - has never been more relevant. 'Frankenstein' is one of the most-filmed stories of all time - up there with Sherlock Holmes and Dracula and Sir Frayling will discuss some of the reasons why. The lecture will be following by a screening of ‘Bride of Frankenstein’ in the Huston School.

On Thursday, 17 January, Sir Frayling will deliver his lecture ‘Once Upon a Time in the West: Shooting a Masterpiece’ at 3pm, followed by a screening of the movie. Sergio Leone's film ‘Once Upon a Time in the West’ set out to be the ultimate Western - a celebration of the power of classic Hollywood cinema, a meditation on the making of America, and a lament for the decline of one of the most cherished of film genres in the form of a "dance of death". With this film, Sergio Leone said a fond farewell to the noisy and flamboyant world of the Italian Western, which he had created with 'A Fistful of Dollars' and sequels, and aimed for something much more ambitious - an exploration of the relationship between myth, history and his own autobiography as an avid film-goer.

Sir Christopher Frayling was until recently Chairman of Arts Council England and former Chairman of the Design Council. He is well-known as an historian, critic and an award-winning broadcaster. His many books include Vampyres: Lord Byron to Count Dracula; The Yellow Peril – Dr Fu Manchu and the Rise of Chinophobia; Inside the Bloody Chamber: on Angela Carter, the Gothic and other weird tales; and Sergio Leone: Once Upon a Time in Italy.

Dr Tony Tracy, Acting Head of the Huston School of Film and Digital Media at NUI Galway, said: “We are delighted to welcome a guest of the stature of Sir Christopher Frayling to the Huston School of Film and Digital Media. Chris has had a distinguished career in education, broadcasting and cultural policy but these lectures capture some of his most enduring contributions: he has written and broadcast better than anyone on Frankenstein and the horror genre and is responsible not only for the definitive biography on Sergio Leone but for coining the term spaghetti western!”


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