Ben’s thesis will illuminate aspects of religious faith and doubt, through the poetry of Symmons Roberts and a complementary collection of his own new work.
Ben is a writer and teacher from Wellington. His poems, and other writing (mostly about education), have appeared in print and online in New Zealand, Australia and the United Kingdom in such diverse places as Landfall, Education Review, broadsheet, Turbine / Kapohau, Cordite Poetry Review, the Times Education Supplement, and others. Originally from the west of England, he studied for a BA (Hons) in Music and Politics, before training as an English teacher. He taught in and around Oxford, England, for eleven years before being offered a teaching job in Wellington, New Zealand.
Ben completed the MA in Creative Writing at the IIML in 2014 before returning, once more, to the classroom. Ben also works part time teaching a postgraduate course for teachers in digital and collaborative learning - considering new pedagogies for the 21st century classroom
'At the heart of my critical thesis will be an examination of Symmons Roberts' Drsysalter to see how he has answered that very question - how successful is his collection in exploring, illuminating and explaining aspects of religious faith and doubt?
'My own collection of poetry will explore similar territory. And of it and myself, I will ask the same question: how can I, as a poet, write about my own faith, doubt, action, inaction, belief and disbelief - along with all the other questions I have? I am particularly interested in poetic form, so I aim for my poetry to explore (and explode) the, perhaps liberating, constraints of a set form and poetic set pieces.'