Martin Goodman, one of Radio 3's New Generation Thinkers, gives a talk on the perils of writing biographies, recorded at the Radio 3 Free Thinking Festival.
"Following in the footsteps" is an obsession for biographers as they travel the world to bring their subjects to life, sometimes with dangerous consequences.
Hull University Professor of Creative Writing Martin Goodman, biographer of the sorcerer Carlos Castaneda, draws on visits to high peaks, the sea-bed, coal mines and monasteries to reveal the challenges of the biographer's art.
The Radio 3 Free Thinking Festival takes place at The Sage Gateshead Friday 2 - Sunday 4 November and is broadcast for three weeks on Radio 3 from Friday 2 November.
The New Generation Thinkers are winners of a talent scheme run by BBC Radio 3 and the Arts and Humanities Research Council to find the brightest academic minds in the arts and humanities with the potential to turn their ideas into broadcasts.