Dominic Smith: Varieties of Movement: Plot and Beyond in Fiction (January 2009)
What keeps us turning the pages of prose pieces by W.G. Sebald or Gertrude Stein, works that are known for their lack of “event”? In this lecture, Dominic Smith challenges and expands conventional ideas about how fiction can move. Drawing on Aristotle’s Poetics, Christopher Booker’s The Seven Basic Plots, W.G. Sebald’s The Rings of Saturn and David Markson’s The Last Novel, Smith considers a variety of types of plot, as well as other devices that can generate momentum at a more molecular level.