Novelist William Boyd awarded Bodleian's highest honour at Oxford Literary Festival

3 April 2017

Novelist and screenwriter William Boyd was awarded the Bodley Medal, the Bodleian Libraries' highest honour, last week following his talk at the FT Weekend Oxford Literary Festival.

Image of William Boyd and Richard Ovenden

Boyd appeared in conversation with Bodley's Librarian Richard Ovenden for the annual Bodley Lecture on 30 March. Speaking in front of an audience at the University's Sheldonian Theatre, Boyd discussed his life and work, and Ovenden presented him with the Bodley Medal at the end of his talk.

Award-winning novelist Boyd is the author of 14 novels. These include the Whitbread Award and Somerset Maugham prize-winning A Good Man in Africa; An Ice Cream War which won the John Llewellyn Rhys Prize; Brazzaville Beach which was awarded both the McVitie's Prize and the James Tait Black Memorial Prize; Any Human Heart which won Image of William Boyd and Richard Ovendenthe Prix Jean Monnet; and Costa Novel of the Year, Restless. In 2012 Boyd was commissioned by the Ian Fleming Estate to write a new James Bond novel, Solo, about a veteran Bond returning to action. Boyd is also a celebrated screenwriter and playwright. Amongst numerous film and television credits, Boyd has adapted many of his own novels including film adaptations of Stars and Bars and A Good Man in Africa, and Any Human Heart for Channel 4 and Restless for BBC. Boyd's latest novel Sweet Caress: The Many Lives of Amory Clay, details the extraordinary life of a female photographer, and through her lens some of the most defining moments of modern history.

The Bodley Medal is awarded by the University of Oxford's Bodleian Libraries to individuals who have made outstanding contributions to the worlds in which the Bodleian is active including literature, culture, science and communication. Past winners include classicist Mary Beard, physicist Stephen Hawking, film director Nicholas Hytner, novelist Hilary Mantel, writer and actor Alan Bennett and inventor of the World Wide Web Sir Tim Berners-Lee.

The Bodleian Libraries is a cultural partner of the FT Weekend Oxford Literary Festival, which took place this year from March 25 to April 2 at the Bodleian's Weston Library and Divinity School as well as at venues across the city.

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