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As My Wimsey Takes Me
61 minutes | Jan 13, 2021
Episode 19: HAVE HIS CARCASE, Part 2
In which Charis and Sharon return (at last!) to Wilvercombe, where Harriet Vane is joined by a familiar monocled face. Their discussion takes them through Chapter 8, including a summation of the evidence gathered so far, mild raptures over witty dialogue and the detective partnership of Peter and Harriet, and the question of taste, style, and class--when the distinction matters, and to whom. This episode covers the fourth through eighth chapters of HAVE HIS CARCASE and does not give away the whodunnit.
54 minutes | Dec 21, 2020
Episode 18: 'The Professor's Manuscript'
In which Charis and Sharon take a detour through a Sayers' short story that features a different detective than our eponymous Wimsey: Mr. Montague Egg, traveling salesman representing Messrs. Plummet and Rose. We follow Monty as he notices something amiss about a potential customer he is visiting in 'The Professor's Manuscript.' We also talk about the underlying class anxiety that the story betrays, as well as the personality traits Monty shares with Lord Peter. And we take some winding detours through theology, anti-capitalism, and more! Our next episode will return us to the shores of Wilvercombe and HAVE HIS CARCASE. For shownotes and the episode transcript, please visit asmywimseytakesme.com.
52 minutes | Dec 7, 2020
Episode 17: The Piscatorial Farce of the Stolen Stomach
Surprise! We took an unplanned and unannounced long hiatus from the podcast because [waves hands vaguely at 2020]. Charis and Sharon are now back in the saddle and ready to tackle the rest of HAVE HIS CARCASE. But before we do that, we have a couple special episodes featuring two short stories from the Sayers canon. In this episode, we discuss the story "The Piscatorial Farce of the Stolen Stomach," which sees Lord Peter back in Scotland for a gutsy adventure. Content note: In this episode, we discuss anti-Semitic views and writings contemporary to Sayers' time.
54 minutes | Jun 22, 2020
Episode 16: HAVE HIS CARCASE, part 1
In which Charis and Sharon attempt to begin discussing HAVE HIS CARCASE, the seventh Lord Peter Wimsey mystery. Spoiler alert: they don't get very far. They cover their mutual love of the book's opening paragraph, the practice of the British walking tour, and Harriet Vane's discovery of a corpse. They then go on a very long tangent about the depiction of policing in detective fiction. Also: Harriet's relationship with the press, how various characters in the novel attempt to construct narratives for themselves, and Sayers' increasing attentiveness to place in the latter half of the Wimsey series. This episode covers the first three chapters of HAVE HIS CARCASE and does not give away the whodunnit. For shownotes and episode transcripts, please visit our website at www.asmywimseytakesme.com.
46 minutes | Jun 8, 2020
Episode 15: FIVE RED HERRINGS, Part 2
In which Charis and Sharon discuss the second half of FIVE RED HERRINGS. We’re joined once again by our friend Angela Hines, who represents the pro-timetables point of view. We reveal the Thing That Was Missing, briefly round up all the suspects, and re-visit our discussion of the Farren marriage as part of Sayers’ continuing theme of equality and inequality in relationships. We also discuss why Peter seems to get along well with artists, what Charis and Sharon find lacking (fraught emotions!), and what Angela finds in abundance (complex puzzle solving!) before revealing the whodunnit and outlining the final confrontation of the book. This episode covers the second half of the novel and gives away both the vital clue and the whodunnit. Visit our website at asmywimseytakesme.com for shownotes and episode transcripts!
70 minutes | May 26, 2020
Episode 14: FIVE RED HERRINGS, Part 1
In which Charis and Sharon return from their short hiatus to talk about traaaaaiiiiinnnnssss. That's right, this is the first of two episodes on THE FIVE RED HERRINGS! Our friend Angela Hines joins us to represent the pro-timetables point of view. We discuss Sayers' correspondence about the novel with her publisher, as well as how the book differs from the previous Lord Peter mysteries. We also cover the scene of the murder, discuss a depiction of marriage in THE FIVE RED HERRINGS, and get ourselves tangled up trying to distinguish which Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood version of "The Lady of Shalott" we're respectively referring to. This episode covers roughly the first half the novel and does not give away the whodunnit.
67 minutes | Apr 27, 2020
Episode 13.5: Neuroscience with Gavrielle Farmer
In this special episode, Sharon spoke with listener Gavrielle Farmer about breakthroughs in neuroscience in the early 20th century, contemporary conversations about brain chemistry and behavior in Sayers' day, the evolving conversation around shellshock between the world wars, and more. Charis and Sharon also catch up on each other's lives during Covid-19 shelter-in-place. The podcast is taking a short hiatus, returning in four weeks with our first episode on FIVE RED HERRINGS. For shownotes, please visit our website.
57 minutes | Apr 14, 2020
Episode 13: STRONG POISON, part 4
In which Charis and Sharon conclude their discussion of STRONG POISON. We follow Miss Climpson as she has an encounter with Spiritualism, Miss Murchison as she snoops, and give away the whodunnit and howdunnit. We also talk about narrative echoes to previous Wimsey mysteries, such as Mrs. Wrayburn in relation to the other elderly women in the plots of UNNATURAL DEATH and THE UNPLEASANTNESS AT THE BELLONA CLUB. And we consider the callbacks to the scene in WHOSE BODY? where Peter solves the case. For shownotes and the episode transcript, please visit our website.
51 minutes | Mar 30, 2020
Episode 12: STRONG POISON, part 3
In this third of four episodes on STRONG POISON, we start discussing the second half of the book. We talk about the very uncomfortable Christmas Peter spends at Dukes Denver. We also consider detective fiction as "the purest literature we have" and how STRONG POISON marks a turn in Sayers' style. Sharon finally learns how to pronounce Norman Urquhart's name, the book catches us up on several characters' love lives, and we see how a Cattery operative works. Also: more plot! For shownotes and episode transcripts, please visit our website.
53 minutes | Mar 17, 2020
Episode 11: STRONG POISON, part 2
In this episode, Charis and Sharon talk about the real-life inspiration for Philip Boyes and what was happening in Sayers' life around the time she wrote STRONG POISON. We also see more of Marjorie Phelps, learn about Harriet's circle of friends, and reflect on Peter's gender performance and privilege in a world of double standards. This is the second of our episodes on the first half of STRONG POISON. We talk about events up through chapter 11 and do not give away the whodunnit. Here's our previous episode with part one of our discussion. *Audio note: There is a slight high-pitched buzz in the background of this episode on Charis' side of the audio that we could not quite edit out and do apologize for! *Content note: We bring up the topic of narcissists and abusive relationships at two points in this episode. While we do not go into detail, if this is a topic you would rather not hear about, those discussions take place between minutes 23:40 and 25:04, and again between minutes 47:48 and 50:00. For more shownotes and the episode transcript, please visit our website.
56 minutes | Feb 24, 2020
Episode 10: STRONG POISON, part 1
In which Charis and Sharon finally (finally!) start discussing STRONG POISON, the fifth Lord Peter Wimsey mystery. We talk about the dramatic introduction of Harriet Vane, our love for the novel's first few chapters, and the theme of the detective's intuition. We also cover Parker's promotion, Sayers' desire to "Reichenbach" Peter, and the many callbacks this book has to previous mysteries in the series. This will be the first of two episodes on the first half of STRONG POISON. We do not give away the whodunnit. For episode shownotes and transcripts, please visit our website.
63 minutes | Feb 10, 2020
Episode 9: THE UNPLEASANTNESS AT THE BELLONA CLUB, part 3
In which Charis and Sharon wrap up the discussion of THE UNPLEASANTNESS AT THE BELLONA CLUB. We finally meet a key suspect and reveal the culprit. We also talk about whether or not art always reflects something about the artist's psyche. And we cover the unequal care given to traumatized members of different economic classes, Peter "starting to see women as people," Parker as sidekick vs. policeman, and why Peter turns certain criminals in to the law and offers others a different ending. We also talk about all our many favorite lines from THE UNPLEASANTNESS AT THE BELLONA CLUB! This episode gives away the whodunnit. For shownotes and the episode transcript, please visit our website.
43 minutes | Jan 28, 2020
Episode 8: THE UNPLEASANTNESS AT THE BELLONA CLUB, part 2
In this second of three episodes on THE UNPLEASANTNESS AT THE BELLONA CLUB, Charis and Sharon run through the events of chapters 8 through 16. We continue to explore the similarities between this book and the themes we talked about in our two earlier episodes on UNNATURAL DEATH. We also discuss our glimpse into Parker at work, alternative sidekicks for Peter, and the introduction of Marjorie Phelps. This episode does not give away the whodunnit. For our first episode on THE UNPLEASANTNESS AT THE BELLONA CLUB, listen here. For shownotes and the episode transcript, please visit our website.
49 minutes | Jan 13, 2020
Episode 7: THE UNPLEASANTNESS AT THE BELLONA CLUB, part 1
In which Charis and Sharon dive in to the first third of THE UNPLEASANTNESS AT THE BELLONA CLUB, the fourth Lord Peter Wimsey mystery! Join us as we talk about the book's portrayal of generational reactions to World War I, the effect of the war on different temperaments, and unhappy marriages in the wake of the war. We also cover the many similarities between this book and UNNATURAL DEATH, insights into how Peter organizes his cases, and how Chris Evans wears really excellent sweaters in Rian Johnson's KNIVES OUT. This episode covers up through chapter 7 and does not spoil the whodunnit. For shownotes and the episode transcript, please visit our website.
77 minutes | Dec 31, 2019
Episode 6.5: "The Locked Room" and Listener Q+A
In this holiday episode, Charis and Sharon discuss "The Locked Room," a Lord Peter short story that was just published for the first time in 2019. It appeared in BODIES FROM THE LIBRARY 2, edited by Tony Medawar. Special thanks to Tony Medawar and to Laura Schmidt, archivist at the Marion E. Wade Center at Wheaton College, for speaking with us about the background for anthology collection and the story manuscript respectively! We also wrap up loose ends from our conversations about UNNATURAL DEATH by revisiting our talk about the racism in the book, quoting our favorite lines, and talking about the novel's original US title. And we ring out the year by answering some questions submitted by our listeners. **Note: If you would like to remain completely unspoiled for "The Locked Room," our discussion of the story starts at minute 19 and ends at 49:13.** For shownotes and the episode transcript, please visit our website.
71 minutes | Dec 16, 2019
Episode 6: UNNATURAL DEATH part 2
In which Charis and Sharon discuss the second half of UNNATURAL DEATH. We reveal the whoddunnit right away and chat about how difficult it is to talk around the culprit when it comes to this book. This episode revisits our conversations on spinsters, lesbianism, and the detective's moral responsibility in light of later revelations in the book. We also boggle at the over-abundance of murders in this novel and have a lengthy discussion on how to deal with casual racism in the literature we love. *Content note: UNNATURAL DEATH contains several instances of a racial slur. We do not use the word ourselves in our discussion, but we do talk about its appearance and context in this episode. For shownotes and the episode transcript, please visit our website.
61 minutes | Dec 2, 2019
Episode 5: UNNATURAL DEATH, part 1
In which Charis and Sharon discuss UNNATURAL DEATH, the third Lord Peter Wimsey mystery. We talk about how Lord Peter learns of this "crime of crimes," where a murder doesn't seem to have been committed at all. We also cover the issue of "surplus women" in the early 20th century, the prominence of spinsters in the book, the introduction of a favorite character, the novel's portrayal of lesbians, and what happens when the detective's actions lead to an innocent's death. This episode covers up through chapter 10 of UNNATURAL DEATH and does not spoil the whodunnit. For shownotes and the episode transcript, please visit our website.
87 minutes | Nov 19, 2019
Episode 4: CLOUDS OF WITNESS, part 2
In which Charis and Sharon catch up after several life disruptions to discuss the second half of CLOUDS OF WITNESS. We cover the idea of mysteries as "convalescent literature," the novel's treatment of national stereotypes, power imbalances in romantic relationships, and the detective's family life. We also talk about why you should never go out onto the moors without your hat. This episode reveals the whodunnit of CLOUDS OF WITNESS. (An alert for our listeners: this episode contains the sound effect of a rifle firing. If you wish to avoid hearing it, skip past minute :50.) For shownotes and the episode transcript, please visit our website.
56 minutes | Nov 8, 2019
Episode 3.5: THE MUTUAL ADMIRATION SOCIETY
Welcome to a very special episode of As My Wimsey Takes Me! In this episode, historian Mo Moulton joins us to talk about their new book THE MUTUAL ADMIRATION SOCIETY: HOW DOROTHY L. SAYERS AND HER OXFORD CIRCLE REMADE THE WORLD FOR WOMEN. Mo tells us about the amazing individuals who made up the Mutual Admiration Society, their lives and accomplishments, and how this friendship influenced Sayers as a thinker and an author. THE MUTUAL ADMIRATION SOCIETY is now available for purchase in the US and UK. Additionally, Mo will be on tour promoting the book. You can find more information about tour dates and locations on their website. About Mo: Dr. Mo Moulton is a historian of 20th century Britain and Ireland, interested in gender, sexuality, and colonialism/postcolonialism. They work as a Senior Lecturer in the History Department at the University of Birmingham, where they are the Director of the Modern British Studies Centre. Moulton earned their PhD from Brown University and spent several years working in the History & Literature program at Harvard University. You can find Mo on Twitter @hammock_tussock and at their website, momoulton.com. For additional shownotes and the episode transcript, please visit our website.
54 minutes | Nov 4, 2019
Episode 3: CLOUDS OF WITNESS, part 1
In which Charis and Sharon discuss the first half of CLOUDS OF WITNESS, wherein Peter must defend his brother, the Duke of Denver, after the latter is accused of murdering their sister's fiancé. We cover British vs. American detective fiction traditions and what CLOUDS OF WITNESS owes to the Victorian country house mystery. We also talk about Sharon's theory of epigraphs, depictions of marriage in the novel, options (or lack thereof) for independent women in the 1920s, and what a mystery with Charles Parker as the protagonist might look like. An alert for our listeners: this episode includes the sound effect of a rifle firing. If you wish to avoid hearing it, skip past minute 1:10. For shownotes and the episode transcript, please visit our website.
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