I’m pleased to be presenting on my book and current works in progress at the first Deakin Cultural Heritage seminar of the semester on 31 July 2019.
The seminar title is “Ideal landscapes, planning and heritage in postwar British culture”, and the abstract as follows:
While Britain’s postwar planned landscapes, including modernist urban redevelopments and new towns, have received increasing attention from historians and heritage professions over recent decades, in political rhetoric and popular culture these landscapes have consistently been viewed as unable to accumulate and retain meaning, and as therefore as dystopian, unnatural, and even foreign. This is particularly the case for the new town of Milton Keynes, the experimental new town designated in 1967; even as residents celebrated its 50th anniversary in 2017, the town has been consistently represented sterile, dystopian, and even as a threat to ideals of national heritage and tradition itself. This presentation draws on the recent book Milton Keynes in British Culture: Imagining England, along with wider case studies, to examine the cultural histories of attitudes to ideal landscapes in Britain, and their wider political functions in debates around tradition, national identity, and the contested legacy of the reconstructionist state’.
Date: Wednesday 31 July, 2019