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Barfield’s Poetic History of Language

November 16 @ 7:00 pm - 8:30 pm

A seminar with Dr Troy Vine
In 1928, C.S. Lewis informed Barfield of his influence on J.R.R. Tolkien, telling Barfield that “your conception of the ancient semantic unity had modified his whole outlook, and he was always just going to say something in a lecture when your concept stopped him in time”. What was it that Barfield taught Tolkien, already a respected philologist at Oxford University, that changed so radically his conception of the history of language? In this lecture I will outline the key ideas in Barfield’s book Poetic Diction which show that the recorded history of language tells an evolutionary story that is at odds with the prevailing narrative that consciousness arose out of inert matter.

Troy Vine is a Research Associate at the Field Centre and a Researcher at Humboldt University, Berlin


November 16
7:00 pm - 8:30 pm
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Simon Reakes


The Field Centre
GL6 0QE United Kingdom + Google Map