Elaborate plotting is the novelistic skill least often valued by critics, even if relished by readers.
This lecture will look at novelists who raise plot to a literary art. We begin with Henry Fielding, the first great novelist to delight in cunning narrative design. Then Dickens's complex plot making, including the half-finished and tantalizing The Mystery of Edwin Drood. Finally, the lecture will celebrate the plotting artistry of modern writers like Ian McEwan and John le Carré.
A lecture by John Mullan
The transcript and downloadable versions of the lecture are available from the Gresham College website: https://www.gresham.ac.uk/lectures-and-events/novel-plot
Gresham College has been giving free public lectures since 1597. This tradition continues today with all of our five or so public lectures a week being made available for free download from our website. There are currently over 2,000 lectures free to access or download from the website.