Abandon the recommendation to break up the Institute of English Studies
  • Petitioned Professor Sir Adrian Smith

This petition was delivered to:

Vice-Chancellor of London University
Professor Sir Adrian Smith

Abandon the recommendation to break up the Institute of English Studies

    1. Petition by

      Save IES

  1.  
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On Thursday, 15 May 2014, Professor Roger Kain, the Dean and Chief Executive of the School of Advanced Study at the University of London, published a letter announcing ‘the University’s formal response to the news that HEFCE funding for SAS will be cut by 3% with effect from 2014–15’.

In effect, the proposal outlined the closure of the Institute of English Studies (IES), an internationally renowned research centre, specialising in the history of the book, manuscript and print studies and textual scholarship (http://www.ies.sas.ac.uk/). The Palaeography and History of the Book part of the IES would be merged with the Institute of Historical Research; some of the rest of its activities would become part of Comparative Literature within  the Institute of Modern Languages Research.

If these recommendations are accepted, most of the IES’s activity, including its high-profile conferences, its 40-odd research seminar series, across the full range of English language and literature, visiting fellowships, collaborations, research projects, training programmes and summer schools, would cease.

What is proposed is a direct assault on the value and integrity of the Institute and of English studies as a discipline. The study of English at national and international levels will be immeasurably damaged, and almost all of what has been most valuable in the IES’s work during the last quarter century would disappear.

Recent signatures

    News

    1. Letter from Professor Roger Kain

      To read the letter of 23 May 2015 from Professor Roger Kain, Dean and Chief Executive of the School of Advanced Study at the University of London, click here:

      http://saveies.files.wordpress.com/2014/05/school-of-advanced-study-letter.pdf

    2. Reached 3,000 signatures
    3. A letter of support from Jerome McGann

      To read a letter of support from Jerome McGann, The John Stewart Bryan University Professor, University of Virginia, and University Research Associate, Uinversity of California, Berkeley, click here:

      http://saveies.files.wordpress.com/2014/05/jerome-mcgann-letter1.pdf

    4. Reached 1,500 signatures
    5. 500 signatories!

      The 500th signatory has just added their name to the petition - please continue to spread the word.

    6. Read Professor David McKitterick's response to the proposal

      To read the letter sent by Professor David McKitterick FBA, Vice-Master of Trinity College, Cambridge and Chairman of the IES Advisory Council
      to Professor Roger Kain FBA, Dean and Chief Executive of the
      School of Advanced Study, University of London click on the link below:

      https://saveies.files.wordpress.com/2014/05/david-mckitterick-roger-cain.pdf

    7. Read the formal response from the Save the IES Steering Group

      To access the formal response from the Save the IES Steering Group to the proposal to close the Institute of English Studies click on the following link:

      http://saveies.files.wordpress.com/2014/05/ies-statement-21.pdf

      Should you feel moved after reading the statement to write directly to Sir Adrian Smith or Roger Kain, please feel free to adapt this letter to your purposes:

      https://saveies.files.wordpress.com/2014/05/speciment-letter.pdf

    8. Reached 500 signatures

    Supporters

    Reasons for signing

    • Rebecca Crowley MARKINGTON, UNITED KINGDOM
      • 4 months ago

      It worries me when those who study of books are marginalised by cutbacks.

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    • Carin Marais RANDBURG, SOUTH AFRICA
      • 4 months ago

      The closure of the IES will be an enormous loss for the academic community. The lack of consultation – and apparent ignorance of the full scope and influence of the IES – is quite shocking. The Institute of English Studies has shown that it is a productive organisation and has truly promoted English Studies in the international academic community. Doing away with such an organisation, rather than simply saving a certain percentage of funding, will only serve to impoverish this field of study and the important work it is doing. I completely agree with Rebecca Beasley, that “breaking up the Institute will inhibit collaboration, stall new initiatives, and impoverish our subject”.

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    • Julie Sirbu LAUSANNE, SWITZERLAND
      • 4 months ago

      As an English student in Switzerland, I feel that these studies are extremely important and valuable and need to be saved.

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    • Maureen McCue TALWRN, UNITED KINGDOM
      • 4 months ago

      I am a lecturer in English.

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    • Yvette Khoury LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM
      • 4 months ago

      IES has been invaluable in my pursuit of HE, closing it down would leave a huge gap in English studies at this level .

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:

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