Dear New Friend,
My name is Mike Bevel, and Wolf Hall is the best novel ever written in the history of language. Any language. Even languages not yet in existence. It’s just the best.
I was recently I don’t want to say viciously attacked by several people who know and love me in a public setting where I could not, with full mettle, defend myself; however, I was viciously attacked, recently, by several people whom I know and love. They said they were bored by Wolf Hall. That they didn’t get it. They didn’t like the pronouns.
Those people are unsaveable, much like Noah’s neighbors, and we mourn them even in their wrongness — especially because of their wrongness. So, my hope is to put things right with this lecture series. I will mend this rift, and they shall be proved wrong, but with love.
My day job is in Regulatory Financial Compliance: I make sure banks and creditors and collection agencies stay on the right side of the law. I love it because it involves knowing the rules and explaining them — two things of which I am inordinately fond.
My passion, though, is in literature. I read an upsetting amount. I have been lucky enough to have run the Bethesda Library’s Classics in Context program for the past 12 years. It is one of the more popular reading groups offered by the library, and I get to read with some incredibly intelligent people. I have never left a book discussion with any of my assumptions about the book intact.
I have also been privileged to be invited to lecture to a variety of audiences, primarily on 19th century history, culture, and literature. I have lectured to the Victorian Society of North American, Washington D.C. chapter; The Gay & Lesbian Alliance; Oasis Lifelong Learning; and for Bethesda Live & Learn. Where I am most interested is in how people perform certain actions. I call it performative morality and actual morality when I’m talking about how the Victorians acted towards, say, the poor.
Books thrive within a conversation. They’re a testing ground for opinions and questions. I hope you’ll join me for this, or other upcoming conversations within this series.
I love you very much,
P.S.: I have writing all over the place: