Kate Macdonald is a literary historian, and a Visiting Fellow in the English department. She works on different aspects of what and how ordinary people read, from around 1880 up to the 1960s: this encompasses middlebrow studies and publishing history (see http://www.reading.ac.uk/english-literature/aboutus/Staff/StaffPublications/ell-kate-macdonald-publications.aspx, and http://katemacdonald.net/kates-books/). Her current research is on how disability was written in British popular print culture. She’s spent several years researching archives in London and Oxford to find the printed ephemera – the reading material that wasn’t expected to last – that holds clues and forgotten evidence about how we looked at and thought about impairment during WW1.
On Monday 8 February Kate will be giving a public talk on how everyday reading during the First World War distributed messages about bodily impairment. She’ll be using posters, postcards, adverts and magazine fiction from the war to show how the war-impaired serviceman was presented to the public. Tickets for the talk are £4/£3, and it will take place at Reading Central Library at 19.30. You can buy tickets here.