I thoroughly enjoyed my time at Manchester University. I felt very privileged to be living and studying in the heart of such a vibrant and culturally rich city.
The English department at Manchester was innovative and experimental – there was a great focus on exploring texts through various theoretical and linguistic models. Being exposed to these many perspectives meant that I was able to approach familiar material, as well as texts I had not previously encountered , with the same interest and interaction and of course an evaluative eye.
My courses inculeded early Anglo Saxon literature, which gave me an interesting insight into the English language and Russian History, which I particularly enjoyed because it enabled me to contextualize writers I am passionate about, such as Dostoyevsky. The broad range of lectures also included a Samuel Beckett course, which introduced me to ‘Endgame’ which is now one of my favorite plays of the 20th century.
My time at Manchester was enriched by my involvement in a variety of the university’s societies. I was a particularly passionate member of the society for emerging artists and I also co-founded a creative writing magazine that sourced avant-garde writing from around the world, the publication of which, I am still involved in.
The main advantage of going to a large university was collaborating on creative projects alongside other people from different backgrounds and disciplines, there were always linguists, philosophers, and other English students to bounce creative ideas off. I found that lectures and seminars, as well as access to a 24-hour library had incredible resources and was incredibly valuable in challenging and encouraging me to pursue and re-examine my creative projects.
I loved living in Manchester but one of the highlights of my degree was going on an Erasmus exchange to the University Autonoma in Barcelona which allowed me to explore European culture and learn also some Spanish. It was a stunning city and my time there enhanced every aspect of my University experience, long after I returned to Manchester.
The main thing I would like to say about going to university in Manchester is that it opened up an entirely new world to me which was the north of England: its industrial history, its alternative culture, its radical politics and its intellectual honesty, features which are all too often missing from the usual London-centric experience of the UK.