Reconciliation Day Public Holiday

All National Library reading rooms will be closed on Reconciliation Day, Monday 28 May.  Regular reading room hours will resume on Tuesday 29 May. See our holiday opening hours for more information.

A Christmas Carol, Then and Now

A Christmas Carol, Then and Now

To mark the 200th anniversary of the birth of Charles Dickens, the spring book club lecture will focus on Dickens' classic tale of redemption, A Christmas Carol, presented by Dr Kate Mitchell. Following the lecture, participants will break into groups to continue the discussion over a glass of wine.

Charles Dickens's ghostly narrative, A Christmas Carol, is one of the author's most well-known and celebrated tales. It circulates with such ubiquity that it is itself spectral, appearing and reappearing with such insistence that it would seem Dickens' wish, that the story would 'haunt [readers] houses pleasantly', has been fulfilled. Yet its very ubiquity can make an encounter with the novella itself surprising since adaptations focus on the general trajectories of the story at the expense of the particularities of Dickens's language and context. By understanding the particularly Victorian resonances of the narrative we are, perhaps paradoxically, better able to understand the enduring fascination of this tale today.

Kate Mitchell is a Lecturer in English at ANU, where she teaches nineteenth-Century literature. She is author of History and Cultural Memory in Neo-Victorian Fiction: Victorian Afterimages (Palgrave Macmillan, 2010) and co-editor (with Dr Nicola Parsons) of Reading Historical Fiction: The Revenant and Remembered Past (forthcoming, Palgrave Macmillan, 2012).

Tuesday 27 November, 6 pm
Conference Room and Friends Lounge
$10 Friends, $15 non-members
Bookings: or 02 6262 1698