Episode 3

Published on:

2nd May 2023

Desperate Characters by Paula Fox

In this third episode of the second season, Alex and Steven delve into Paula Fox's captivating novel, Desperate Characters. They explore the intricacies of the characters and their interactions with the world around them, as well as the socioeconomic conditions of New York at the time. Topics discussed include:

  • In what sense are the characters desperate?
  • To what extent are the characters' sense of being vulnerable/under attack due to their affluence, the socioeconomic conditions of New York at that time, or alternatively, is it more due to their particular individual flaws/neuroses?
  • How does one consider their future relationship prospects?
  • Is the depiction of poorer people at that time grimly realistic or misanthropic and/or somewhat prejudicial?
  • What constitutes the value of this novel - either in terms of its literary qualities or its psychological acumen?

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About the Podcast

The Reading Cure
Books that change lives.
In this bibliotherapy podcast, Dr Steven Davies and Dr Alexander Fox discuss the life-changing insights that great books have to offer. Each episode offers an in depth, mental health-focused analysis of a chosen book, and through their conversation, Alex and Steven try to get to the root of how we can best use that author's wisdom to avoid common pitfalls and live happier, more fulfilling lives.
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About your hosts

Steven Davies

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Dr Steven Davies is co-host and co-creator of The Reading Cure podcast. He is currently studying for an MSc in Counselling. Steven has a degree in Economics and a PhD in International Relations from the University of St Andrews; as well as a BA in Literature from the Open University. He has over 12-years experience working in education.

Alexander Fox

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Dr. Alexander Fox is co-host and co-creator of The Reading Cure Podcast. He has an MA (Hons) in philosophy, an MSc in Counselling and a PhD in English Literature (on the works of Nobel Laureate Harold Pinter) . He has a private counselling practice in Dundee, Scotland (https://www.counselling-directory.org.uk/counsellors/alexander-fox), and he sees clients online through a Harley St. clinic in London (http://www.westlakeclinic.co.uk/dralexfox.html). He also supervises counsellors/ therapists.