Queen of Suspense: A Patricia Highsmith Symposium.

Posted on 4th September 2018

The works of Patricia Highsmith, who wrote The Talented Mr Ripley and Carol, will be discussed at the first ever international symposium devoted to the author and hosted by the Department of English at the University of Chester.

Sally Jones
Sally Jones

‘Queen of Suspense: A Patricia Highsmith Symposium’ takes place on Friday, September 14 and will feature presentations drawn from a wide range of disciplines and approaches to reading and interpreting Highsmith’s significant and influential body of work. 

The day will focus on revaluating her as a pioneer of modern suspense, whose literary fiction transcends genre. The 20th-century American author is arguably experiencing a posthumous resurgence of popular interest owing, in part, to the recent success of Todd Haynes’s adaptation of Carol (2014), and Anthony Minghella’s earlier remake of The Talented Mr Ripley (1999).

Keynote speakers include Highsmith scholar Dr Sally West, who is a Senior Lecturer at the University; critically acclaimed biographer Andrew Wilson and award-winning author of The Crime Writer, Jill Dawson.

The symposium has been organised by Sally Jones, a second year PhD student and Patricia Highsmith scholar at the University. It has received funding support via the Academic Strand of the Cestrian Award, a new area of funding from the University of Chester Alumni Association, which specifically supports student-led academic activity in the institution.

Sally said: “Although Highsmith is repeatedly cited by respected authors and critics, as an important and influential literary figure, there is still, proportionally, very little serious scholarly study of her hugely significant contributions to literature.

“It seems fitting then, that academia finally acknowledges the literary output, and celebrates and engages with the prickly, contradictory, enigmatic and problematic persona of an individual who has been so monumental in shaping the climate of modern fiction.”

For further information please contact Sally Jones - 1520507@chester.ac.uk. To register online please visit https://storefront.chester.ac.uk/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=6&products_id=758