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Charles Dickens: Celebrity Author: Track 3

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Charles Dickens was not only the most famous writer of his day, but, during the second half of his career, also a prominent public figure known through his readings and speeches. He cultivated, and relished, a close relationship with the vast audiences who came to hear him, in towns and cities throughout Britain, and in the USA. His readings appealed to his own deep instinct in support of the development of the imagination of the people, and also acknowledged the common Victorian pastime of domestic literary recitation. As an actor he took on the visage and gestures as well as the voice of his characters; audiences were spellbound.

By: The OpenLearn team (The Open University,)

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Track 3: From Novels to Readings 1858

How Dickens began his professional career reading for his own profit initiating a new and brilliant phase in his career.


© The Open University 2012


Tracks in this podcast:

Track   Title Description
1 The First Public Reading 1853    How Dickens started his reading career with A Christmas Carol - a reading he did for charity - in Birmingham Town Hall. Play now The First Public Reading 1853
2 Dickens The Performer    Dickens first love wasn't writing, it was acting. In this programme we look at Dickens love of acting and the theatre. Play now Dickens The Performer
3 From Novels to Readings 1858    How Dickens began his professional career reading for his own profit initiating a new and brilliant phase in his career. Play now From Novels to Readings 1858
4 The American Tour    We look at how in 1867 Charles Dickens embarked on an exhausting 19 week tour of America as one of the world's first 'celebrity authors'. Play now The American Tour
5 The Farewell Tour    In October 1868 Charles Dickens farewell tour began but had to be cut short on account of his failing health. Play now The Farewell Tour

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