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Produced by Poet in the City, Common Language is a new digital programme with an initial series spanning four episodes, broadcast live and hosted on YouTube. Each 30 minute conversation will be interspersed by poetry that serves as both an entry point and a response to the topic in hand. The speakers were chosen for their contribution and work within these fields and the poets to share their lived experiences through spoken word.

Despite a fast-paced, changing news agenda, the same key phrases and buzzwords appear year after year among the headlines, read out by newsreaders or posted on social media channels. But what do these terms really mean, and how should they be interpreted in the context of current issues? Common Language will see a poet and an activist or academic paired together to unpack the meaning behind current affairs terminology and their usage among societal issues of today.


Common Language


Poet in the City

What We Talked About

What are borders but social, political and commercial constructs? Writer Maya Goodfellow and poet Nick Makoha explore the impact of Borders on those who live near them or have to cross them.

Maya Goodfellow – The Academic

Maya Goodfellow is a writer, researcher and academic. She has written for the New York Times, the Guardian, the New Statesman, Al Jazeera and the Independent. She received her PhD from SOAS, University of London. She is a trustee of the Runnymede Trust.

Nick Makoha – The Writer

Nick is a poet, playwright and academic