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Book launch: The Prodigal Son in English and American Literature

Book cover for The Prodigal Son in English and American Literature

The launch of Dr Alison Jack’s latest book, 'The Prodigal Son in English Literature: Five hundred years of literary homecomings,’ will feature a number of prominent speakers, a response by the author and a drinks reception.

All welcome.

There will be short presentations from:

  • Professor Ian Campbell, Emeritus Professor of Scottish and Victorian Literature, University of Edinburgh
  • Professor David Jasper, DD, FRSE,  Professor Emeritus of Literature and Theology, University of Glasgow
  • Dr Caroline Blyth, Senior Lecturer, University of Auckland, New Zealand

Response: Dr Alison Jack, Senior Lecturer and Assistant Principal, New College, University of Edinburgh

Chair: Professor Helen Bond, Professor of Christian Origins and Head of School, Divinity


Publisher Oxford University Press describes the book as "An authoritative yet accessible examination of the characters of the Prodigal son and his family as they appear in drama, novels, and poetry in English from the 15th to 21st centuries. Focusing on the theme of homecoming each chapter provides an in-depth exploration of a particular period, geographical place, and/or genre in which the character of the Prodigal Son is particularly significant." The book examines the work of Shakespeare, George Eliot, Elizabeth Gaskell, Margaret Oliphant, Elizabeth Bishop, Iain Crichton Smith, amongst others and employs the hermeneutical resources of literature, theology, and history to bring valuable perspectives on the parable of the Prodigal son."


This event has been sponsored by the Centre for Theology and Public Issues (CTPI).