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Toby Brothers

Director of the Paris and London Literary Salons

Toby Brothers (MA Education, Literature, Counseling Psychology) conceived of, developed and leads the Literary Salon in London and Paris.

Her experience includes teaching literary seminars in areas that range from creative writing to women’s literature and film, world religions and wisdom traditions, African American Literature to Shakespeare for adults, secondary and primary school students.

She has worked as a master teacher and a mentor teacher and has over 25 years of innovative teaching and seminar experience in France, the USA, Japan and beyond.

Her post-graduate studies include advanced degrees in education, literature and psychology and a broad expanse of humanities and world religions course work.

Jane Wymark

Jane Wymark (BA Hons Drama Birmingham University) has worked extensively as an actor on stage and screen. Her early career included seasons at various provincial repertory theatres playing a variety of roles – from Bianca in Taming of the Shrew to Irina in Three Sisters and a version of Lucrezia Borgia in David Hare and Howard Brenton’s resetting of the Borgia dynasty in 1970s Nottingham. She played Morwenna in the original Poldark series on BBC; and Ophelia to Derek Jacobi’s Hamlet at the Old Vic and on a world tour which included Denmark and Shanghai.

After a five-year break living abroad (Dhaka and Copenhagen) Jane returned to acting and amongst a number of roles is probably best known for playing Joyce Barnaby in Midsomer Murders. She has also run drama workshops in schools for the National Theatre education department, worked as a continuity announcer for BBC television and Radio 4, and as a tutor at Guildhall School of Music and Drama.

Caroline Hammond

Caroline Donnelly was born and grew up in Toronto.  After reading I Capture The Castle when she was twelve she vowed to live one day in the United Kingdom and 10 years after that left Canada for London.  She has lived there ever since, working in various fields including HR and Learning and Development.

Caroline began writing poetry ten years ago and under her pen name, Caroline Hammond, her poems have appeared in Under the Radar, Finished Creatures and the Adriatic Magazines and the Ink Sweat and Tears Twelve Days of Christmas Feature. She has contributed to The Emma Press Anthology of Contemporary Gothic Verse and the Black Bough Poetry Christmas and Winter Edition. 

She helped facilitate the Literary Salon’s Odyssey Study in Agistri, Greece in 2019 where she focused on poetic meter and modern poetry written in response to the Odyssey.  Caroline believes that everyone has more space in their lives for contemporary poetry than they realise.

Mark Cwik

Mark Cwik has been leading discussions that introduce adults of all backgrounds to the world’s greatest books for over twenty years in Chicago, Toronto and London. He was trained as a discussion facilitator while at the Great Books Foundation in Chicago and has been a passionate advocate for lifelong liberal learning since attending St. John’s College, Santa Fe and the University of Chicago’s Basic Program in Liberal Education.

Mark offers Salon studies on works across the Western intellectual tradition, with special strength in texts from Classical Greece and Rome, and Biblical and religious texts. He is equally comfortable with classic and modern novels, short stories, drama, and works of political science, philosophy and natural science.

In addition to his work with the London Literary Salon, Mark leads seminars for Toronto-based Classical Pursuits, where he is also the Education Manager, and for OnlineGreatBooks.com.

He is also an accomplished woodworker and was for 15 years in Chicago a self-employed designer and maker of bespoke, contemporary furniture.

Sarah Snoxall

Having initially studied English at Cambridge, Sarah developed an interest in Psychology that led to a second degree, a masters and a PhD in Cognitive Psychology at UCL and Birkbeck.

She then started her own business working with organisations and boards to develop their leaders, to co-create new strategies and to facilitate difficult conversations around change.  Sarah has recently been working with all the art colleges of the University of the Arts London, with Goldsmiths and with The Green Party. She has also had experience as a teacher at Birkbeck and as a trainer working globally with many different types of organisations.

Returning now to her love of great books, she has spent the last four years studying one brilliant book after another with Toby.

Sarah is passionate about all types of music and always looking for opportunities to play her cello in string ensembles.

Nicky von Fraunhofer

Dr Nicky von Fraunhofer is a group analyst (Institute of Group Analysis) and visiting lecturer. She worked for nearly twenty years as an NHS consultant child and adolescent psychiatrist, and established a local children’s service for autistic spectrum disorders.

Although not currently attached to a parish, Nicky is an ordained priest in the Church of England. Nicky has published works in the fields of group analysis and psychiatry, and is working on her first fiction book which is based around a fictional psychiatric hospital.

Nicky enjoys a wide range of books and is currently reading Proust’s In Search of Lost Time, as part of a Literary Salon. Nicky began exploring ‘the wine dark sea’ of literature after joining Toby’s Salon on Homer’s Odyssey in 2015, little realising that the Siren song of good reading would draw her on a happy voyage, forever further from the shore.

Basil Lawrence

Basil Lawrence (BA Hons English Literature, MA Creative Writing) is the author of two novels including At the Edge of the Desert to be published by Penguin in 2021. He’s run a series of short story discussions with Jungian psychoanalysts at Waterstones, Piccadilly; and chaired an examination of Antoine Watteau’s Fête Galante in a Wooded Landscape at the Wallace Collection. He studied at the Nabokov Museum’s International Summer School under Profs Julian Connolly and Alexander Dolinin in the old Nabokov family home in Saint Petersburg.

When not working, he enjoys reading and discovering London on foot.

Geoff Brown

Geoff Brown was born on the South coast of England, in Bournemouth. He spent an early part of his childhood in Malta, and has lived in Hertfordshire since the mid-1970s. His interests range across literature, languages, cinema and music. His doctoral thesis on the work of the French director Claire Denis explored issues of relationality as mediated through the use of music in film.

He is a particular admirer of Henry James and Marcel Proust, and also counts Anthony Trollope, Don DeLillo, Henri de Balzac, Marie NDiaye and Joyce Carol Oates among his favourite authors. His facilitation style combines humour with carefully curated knowledge to challenge assumptions and illuminate the literature.

Geoff has played an active part in London salons – including trailblazing studies of Faulkner, Joyce and Woolf. Geoff’s research and resource-distillation work has also contributed to studies on Javier Marìas and Proust. He is co-facilitator of the studies of Toni Morrrison’s Jazz, and is developing a study on transgressional issues which would bring into conversation Faulkner’s novel Sanctuary and Denis’ film Les salauds (The Bastards).

Keith Fosbrook

Keith Fosbrook was an undergraduate at Oxford University, originally studying Classics, before switching to Final Honours in PPP (Philosophy and Psychology). Since then, he has spent many years in a variety of secondary schools, teaching Classical subjects, English and philosophy. He returned to Oxford for a further three years, researching the role of emotions in education. This was with special reference to the potential impact of literature and fiction in general on the emotional development of adolescents.

Keith also worked for a number of Examination boards in the area of Classical Studies, and became for some years a Chief Examiner for Latin Literature. Amongst other skills, this experience allowed him to cultivate the art of asking the sort of questions which can help students to express what they understand about literature, and ensuring space for the variety of responses that can be provoked.

He has been a delighted member of the Salon for some years. To share with others the slow development of understanding of a profound book is truly life-giving. His literary interests are many and wide-ranging. Of the dead, he is particularly drawn to Henry James and Joseph Conrad. Of the living, he is addicted to Javier Marias.

Julie Sutherland

Julie Sutherland is deeply interested in the capacity of literature—both read and in performance—to effect change in the human spirit. After completing an MA and PhD in English Studies and Seventeenth-Century Studies at the University of Durham, Julie returned to her home country, Canada, to teach Shakespeare and Renaissance Studies at the University of British Columbia and Kwantlen Polytechnic. She has also developed curriculum for Athabasca University’s online Shakespeare modules and created a Shakespeare-for-children programme for an outdoor education group on a tiny island off the Eastern coast of Canada.

Julie has been recognized for teaching excellence in Shakespearean drama in Canada and the UK. She regularly leads creative workshops on Shakespeare and other literature for the ReLit Foundation, a ‘reading for well-being’ charity based in both Oxford and Arizona. Julie has also worked in theatre production and administration and even managed to play Titania, Queen of the Faeries, in a semi-professional production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream

Paul Caviston

Paul is a Consultant Psychiatrist and Psychoanalytic Psychotherapist specialising in working with children and teenagers.  He has always been drawn toward novels, poetry, and art in his therapeutic work for inspiration as well as consolation.

Paul believes literature gives us endlessly rich and varied representations of what it is to be human and humane as well as ethical and sane.  He grew up in Dublin and spent many happy hours swimming in the Forty Foot.

Barb Turk

Barb Turk (BA Northwestern, MA National Louis) has taught primary and early secondary students in and out of the traditional classroom for more than 25 years. Originally from Montreal, she was raised in the American south before moving to Chicago and Seattle, settling in London with her family in 2007.

Barb is currently working on her dissertation for her MA in Children’s Literature at Goldsmiths, as her greatest enthusiasm is reading with kids.  Her love of children’s books led her to design and teach a story-based children’s yoga curriculum for seven years prior to returning to the KS2 classroom in 2017.

Barb’s favourite children’s books vary from classics from her childhood to current titles, and she has a newfound abundant enthusiasm for graphic novels and their ability to grab the attention of even the most reluctant readers.  She thinks of herself as someone who helps kids find the keen reader they already have inside, even if they don’t yet know it.

Alison Cable

Alison Cable (BA, MA English Literature) was a university lecturer in the US before moving to London a decade ago.  She taught Contemporary Literature, Reading and Writing Across the Curriculum, and Critical and Analytical Thinking at several east coast Universities.  She has a particular interest in the therapeutic nature of shared reading, with a focus on young adults.

From the poetry of Emily Dickinson to the short stories of Flannery O’Connor to contemporary literary fiction, her interests are wide-ranging but focus on how reading literature together can reduce feelings of isolation, slow us down, lead to increased empathy, and be an antidote to the demands of social media.

While in London, Alison has volunteered as a primary school librarian, written a novel for young adults, and regularly attends the London Literary Salon.  She’s currently doing coursework in counselling, as well as volunteering as a group leader for The Reader Organisation.

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I would recommend courses led by Toby to anyone who wants to look at a text in detail in a study group
I was certainly surprised at how much I was thrown off balance by these two astounding writers…I look forward to returning for more
We all came to the group with different backgrounds and interests but Mark has skillfully guided us through a stimulating programme of Greek literature.
I always leave the meetings with a much broader understanding of what we are reading than when I arrived
Everyone feels they get heard and therefore that each of us has a contribution to make
In all of the courses I have attended I have felt a bond within the group, and this contributes significantly to the quality of the discussions
Lovely, intimate groups with in-depth discussions, lots of learning, and friendships are made for life there
I’ve read things I’d never dared read before.  I’ve made new friends and met really interesting people.
On facilitation
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What’s coming up?

july 2021

07jul6:00 pmSANDPIPER BY ELIZABETH BISHOP**This Study is Now Full**6:00 pm VIRTUALType Of Study:LiteratureFrequency:One Off EventDuration:One day

21jul5:00 pmJazz by Toni Morrison Two-night study5:00 pm Kentish Town, LondonType Of Study:LiteratureFrequency:WeeklyDuration:Two meetings

21jul6:00 pmTHE TYGER by William Blake6:00 pm VIRTUALType Of Study:LiteratureFrequency:One Off EventDuration:One day

august 2021

04aug2:00 pmGerard Manley Hopkins: The Windhover*NEW DATE*2:00 pm VIRTUALType Of Study:LiteratureFrequency:One Off EventDuration:One day

16aug1:00 pmThe Best of Shakespeare: A Session of Poetry from ‘the Bard of All Bards’Evening session full; NEW TIME available 1:00 pm VIRTUALType Of Study:LiteratureFrequency:One Off Event

september 2021

08sep6:00 pmLong Ago and Far Away: Egil's Saga6:00 pm VIRTUALType Of Study:Literature,PhilosophyFrequency:WeeklyDuration:Ongoing

13sep3:00 pmThe Guermantes Way -- Volume III of Proust's In Search of Lost TimeVIRTUAL STUDY3:00 pm VIRTUALType Of Study:LiteratureFrequency:WeeklyDuration:Three months

14sep4:00 pmHomer's Odyssey4:00 pm VIRTUALType Of Study:LiteratureFrequency:WeeklyDuration:Eight weeks

14sep5:00 pmThe Sound and The Fury by William Faulkner*New Study! *5:00 pm VIRTUALType Of Study:LiteratureFrequency:WeeklyDuration:Five weeks

15sep5:00 pmTHE WINGS OF THE DOVE BY HENRY JAMES5:00 pm VIRTUALType Of Study:LiteratureFrequency:WeeklyDuration:Nine weeks

22sep5:00 pmTime Regained- Final Volume of Proust's SearchSTUDY FULL5:00 pm VIRTUALType Of Study:LiteratureFrequency:WeeklyDuration:Eleven weeks

29sep6:00 pmThe Years by Virginia Woolf Five-day study in St Ives *NEW DATES*STUDY FULL Immersive Study of Woolf's family saga in Cornwall6:00 pm St Ives, CornwallType Of Study:Literature,TravelFrequency:One Off EventDuration:Five days

october 2021

06oct1:30 pmFinnegans Wake- The Slow Read1:30 pm VIRTUALType Of Study:LiteratureFrequency:WeeklyDuration:Nine weeks

07oct2:00 pmMoby Dick by Herman MelvilleNEW STUDY!2:00 pm VIRTUALType Of Study:LiteratureFrequency:WeeklyDuration:Three months

11oct5:30 pmMrs Dalloway by Virginia Woolf: Five weeksVIRTUAL STUDY 5:30 pm VIRTUALType Of Study:LiteratureFrequency:WeeklyDuration:Five weeks

november 2021

01nov6:00 pmTHE DUCHESS OF MALFI BY JOHN WEBSTER6:00 pm VIRTUALType Of Study:LiteratureFrequency:WeeklyDuration:Seven weeks

january 2022

11jan2:30 pmUlysses by James Joyce: First-timers Afternoon and Evening options*100 year Anniversary special*2:30 pm VIRTUALType Of Study:LiteratureFrequency:WeeklyDuration:Six months