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Reader Meet Author

45 minutes
First broadcast:
Sunday 23 December 2012

Corin Throsby explores the unexpected literary influences on Byron, Tennessee Williams and Virginia Woolf - their fan mail.

Fan mail is generally regarded as a modern phenomenon but, in the early nineteenth century, Lord Byron received hundreds of letters from ardent strangers. This correspondence was indicative of a growing culture of intimacy between reader and author in the Romantic period. Although Byron struck an aristocratic pose of indifference towards his fans, he secretly kept all their letters.

In this programme 'Radio 3 New Generation Thinker' Corin Throsby rifles through the fan-mail of Byron, Virginia Woolf and Tennessee Williams, amongst others, and explores the personality-saturated media of the digital age.

Producer: Gavin Heard.


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