01572 717254   Launde Road, LE7 9XB
  Launde Road, East Norton, LE7 9XB   01572 717254 Contact Us Find a Retreat Privacy Policy

Literature Lectures

A series of literature lectures exploring great writers, their lives and their books, followed by a delicious Launde Lunch. Presented by renowned speaker Dr Jane Mackay.

£20.00 per person. Lectures begin at 12.30pm and last for approximately one hour, followed by a two-course lunch in the Abbey Dining Room.






Literature Lectures

Friday, February 8th 2019  The Third Man by Graham Greene

Unusually for Greene this was written first as a screenplay for the famous film with Orson Welles.  Later Greene wrote it as a novella for the public with a happy ending which Carol Reed had rejected for the film.  Come and enjoy mysterious Vienna just after World War Two.


Literature Lectures

Friday, March 1st 2019                                                                                                                            Agnes Grey by Anne Bronte

The youngest Bronte had a much deeper understanding of the reality of governessing than either of her sisters.  This wonderful novel shows what that reality was.  Come and meet the lovely patient Anne/Agnes as she tries to control her sometimes appalling charges.



Literature Lectures

Friday, April 5th 2019   The Screwtape Letters by C S Lewis

Better known for The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe this is different Lewis.  Here he wonderfully introduces us to a persuasive Devil who knows just how to get under a Christian’s skin.  Funny and thought-provoking!






Literature Lectures

Friday, May 3rd 2019   One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovitch by Alexander Solzhenitsyn

Based on the Nobel Prizewinner’s own experience, this novel shocked the world with its open criticism of Stalinist Russia.  Come and find out why this is great writing in a time of great fear.





Literature Lectures

Friday, June 7th 2019      North and South by Elizabeth Gaskell

Gaskell’s wonderful study of mid 19th century Manchester with the mills that she knew so well as wife of a Unitarian minister.  Atmospherically quite beautiful with a realistic love story … come and enjoy.






Literature Lectures

Friday, July 5th 2019  Seven Years in Tibet by Heinrich Harrer


Not a novel this time but one of the best travel books and the only one where the young German author  had full access to one of the most remote and mysterious lands.  A classic and the forerunner of many later Harrer travel books, it introduces us to the Dalai Lama as a curious child.




Friday, August 2nd 2019  David Copperfield by Charles DickensLiterature Lectures

This is, in a way, Dickens’ own story told in novel form.  Full of wonderful characters and the atmosphere of growing up but not strictly auto-biography.  A curious book which has kept its place as one of England’s favourites.





Friday, September 6th 2019  Daisy Miller by Henry James

One of James’s shortest works and beautifully set in Vevey, there is the classic puzzle … what is Daisy really like?  Is she a ‘tease’ of a genuinely nice girl who means well?  Come and meet her and decide for yourselves.

Literature Lectures









Literature Lectures

Thursday, October 3rd 2019     Death in Venice by Thomas Mann  PLEASE NOTE THIS LECTURE IS ON A THURSDAY

In this exquisite short novel Mann explores the loss of dignity of an ageing great artist, based on Gustav Mahler.  Held captive in a Venice reeking with cholera, Mann’s character exposes the pathetic pursuit of an impossible love.  Published in 1912, this is the most perfect of all Thomas Mann’s works.


Friday, November 1st 2019    Persuasion by Jane Austen

Literature Lectures

Austen’s last full novel and the favourite of many.  Come and meet her charming heroine, Anne Elliot, saddened and unmarried at 28.  Anne is older and wiser than Austen’s other heroines and, for many, embodies all the qualities that Austen herself admired … but will she win back Captain Wentworth?



Literature Lectures



Friday, December 6th 2019      Little Women by Louisa May Alcott

One of the most popular family stories, this is hugely autobiographical.  Come and meet the delightful March family, based on Alcott’s own.  But the real story behind the charm is very different and the life so much harsher than the fiction.


For more information about these lectures or to book call 01572 717254 or email info@laundeabbey.org.uk




Get Launde Abbey's Latest News Straight into your inbox

© 2018 - All rights reserved 01572 717254, Launde Abbey Trust Registered Office: East Norton, Leicestershire LE7 9XB
The Retreat House for the Dioceses of Leicester and Peterborough
Chairman of the Trustees: Ven. Tim Stratford Company Number: 07469311 Charity Number: 1140918
Copyright Launde Abbey 2018 ❖ Web Design Leicestershire ❖ The Internet Marketeer