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MAY 2021

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the making

of frank prewett

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an interview with joy porter

"He's dealing with what it means to be alive, how to cope with trauma, technologization, and modernization. He could see all of that coming. [...] We are again re-arming, we are again at a time of tremendous upheaval; social, cultural, and technological. The issues he was concerned about are also the ones, I think, that will dominate the next century." – Joy Porter

After experiencing shell shock during WWI, the Canadian poet Frank Prewett—whose  poems are published in this issue—adopted an Iroquois identity and underwent therapy in Great Britain, where he befriended Siegfried Sassoon and was patronised and published by the literary establishment. 

In this recording, Henry Martin interviews Joy Porter about her book Trauma, Primitivism, and the First World War: The Making of Frank Prewett; an innovative interdisciplinary study on trauma, primitivism, and literary history. 


Use the code PREW21 on Bloomsbury online to avail of a 35% discount on Porter's book. 

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JOY PORTER is is a writer, researcher and academic from the North of Ireland who writes about indigenous and environmental history, modernity and war. She is a Leverhulme Major Research Fellow (2019-2022) and Principal Investigator of the Treatied Spaces Research Cluster based at the University of Hull. She recently launched Brightening the Covenant Chain, a research project funded by the Arts & Humanities Research Council. Her next book is Canada’s Green Challenge, contracted with McGill-Queens University Press. You are invited the book launch of Trauma, Primitivism, and the First World War: The Making of Frank Prewett at the British Library online, June 15.

HENRY MARTIN is a Founding Editor at Signal House Edition, author of the biography Agnes Martin: Pioneer, Painter, Icon, and a researcher in biography studies and art history at the National College of Art and Design, Ireland. He has previously lectured at CityLit, NCAD, UCA Farnham, and Camberwell College of Arts. INSTAGRAM. WEBSITE. TWITTER.

The poems of Frank Prewett are read by LUKE MULLINS, music is composed by STANDAMID, and the recording is edited by


(Image credits: (top) Frank Prewett by Dorothy Brett. 1923 (left) Frank James Prewett by Lady Ottoline Morrell, © National Portrait Gallery, London, (right)  Colin de la Mare, Siegfried Sassoon; Frank James Prewett by Lady Ottoline Morrell, © National Portrait Gallery, London.)

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