SC Book Club September 12, 2022, at 2-4pm – Fellows & External Fellows Only – Zoom Only
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September 12, 2022 @ 2:00 pm - 4:00 pm
September 12, 2022, 2-4pm – Fellows and External Fellows
Dorothy L. Sayers, Gaudy Night (1935)
Discussion Leader: Germaine Warkentin
This distinguished and beautifully written mystery-cum-novel – beloved by academics – is the second-last of Dorothy L. Sayers’ eleven mysteries and many stories centering on Lord Peter Wimsey, brilliant second son of a ducal family, shell-shocked hero of World War I, and witty gentleman detective. In Strong Poison he proposes to the mystery writer Harriet Vane, whom he has saved from hanging for murder. She refuses to marry a man to whom she must always feel grateful, but five years later he is still patiently courting her. In Gaudy Night Harriet has been invited to attend the annual Gaudy celebrations of her alma mater, the all-female Shrewsbury College, Oxford (based on Sayers’ own Somerville College). When poison-pen messages, obscene graffiti and wanton vandalism greet her, she has to investigate on her own, because Peter is mysteriously abroad, seemingly on some diplomatic mission. Sayers sketches without illusion the issues of the time, including the role of women, especially in the academy, as well as the probability of coming war. A tangle of events returns Peter to Oxford, and as the couple solve the ugly college mystery they discover a new kind of relationship between loving but independent minds. This is one of the best of Sayers’ outstanding mystery stories, a ground-breaking feminist work in its own right as well as a prelude to her religious drama (The Man Born to be King) and her later translation of Dante. Sayers, her circle of writing friends, and the generation of women who were the first to win Oxford degrees have been the subject of several recent historical studies.
(available in print, BBC audio version, e-book)
The link to register is https://forms.office.com/r/mpdrQVxRT3
The deadline to register is 8:00am on the morning of the event. The Zoom link will be sent to registrants only.