Poetry and Politics: Samuel Taylor Coleridge at Jesus College
Free and open to all; from 11am to 4pm daily.
The Marshall Room at Jesus College, Cambridge CB5 8BL
Coleridge – poet, philosopher, critic, visionary, and one of Cambridge’s most famous students. He arrived at Jesus College in 1791, and left three years later without receiving a degree. Those three years, though, were a foundation for his poetry, his thinking, and his often complicated utopian politics.
This exhibition examines Coleridge’s life and work in the light of contemporary engagements with the legacies of racial slavery. In his first year, Coleridge was awarded the University’s Browne Medal for a Greek poem denouncing the transatlantic slave system; yet at the time he was the recipient of a Rustat Scholarship, endowed by Royal African Company financier Tobias Rustat. Later in life he would publicly lecture against slavery but also come to endorse some of the pseudo-scientific racist ideas of his day.
Curated by Dr Mathelinda Nabugodi in collaboration with Dr Christopher Burlinson, Dr Maximiliaan van Woudenberg and Jesus College Archive.
© National Portrait Gallery, London