This half-term subject will examine the book that Dickens called his “favorite child” and Virginia Woolf thought “the most perfect” of his novels, David Copperfield. We’ll consider the central position of this work in Dickens’s development as a writer, as well as the interplay between fiction and autobiography, and the structure of serial narrative by a pioneer of the form. Topics will include such Dickensian subjects as childhood, memory, comedy and the grotesque, guilt and loss, growing up, and more. But we won’t neglect to take time to enjoy the experience of an epic read from an author whose big books, even in an age of distraction, continue to engage and entertain.