Once I was a clever boy learning the arts of Oxford... is a quotation from the verses written by Bishop Richard Fleming (c.1385-1431) for his tomb in Lincoln Cathedral. Fleming, the founder of Lincoln College in Oxford, is the subject of my research for a D. Phil., and, like me, a son of the West Riding. I have remarked in the past that I have a deeply meaningful on-going relationship with a dead fifteenth century bishop... it was Fleming who, in effect, enabled me to come to Oxford and to learn its arts, and for that I am immensely grateful.

Saturday, 30 August 2014

The benefits of reading crime fiction

I was amused by an apparently true story told by a participant in a discussion about violence and the media on Rradio 4 last night. It came originally from a librarian who told of an elderly lady who early each week borrowed six crime novels and, having read them retuned them the next week and took out six more. This went on for a long period. Suddenly one week she said "I've had enough of murder. I want some romances." The librarian, surprised at this change, enquired as to why this was, and received the reply "Well my husband's died so I no longer need to fantasise about murdering him."

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