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The best of BBC Radio 3's flagship arts and ideas programme Free Thinking - featuring in-depth interviews and debates with artists, scientists and public figures.


R3Arts: Night Waves - The New Common Reader 22 Apr 13

April 23rd, 2013

Episode 319 of 1341 episodes

Matthew Sweet is leading an elite party of literary explorers - Linda Grant, Aminatta Forna, Naomi Alderman and Tim Stanley on an expedition to find "the common reader" -- being stalked by Woolf in the 20th Century and by Johnson in the 18th. Both believed that the common reader "uncorrupted with literary prejudices" was the final arbiter of "poetical honours" so it's a quest that's clearly still relevant today. The question is what does a common reader look like in our digital age? What are they reading? Where? And how?

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