Gertrude Chataway, Lewis Carroll’s forgotten child-friend

Lewis Carroll - Gertrude Chataway, lying on sofa (c.1876) - Harry Ransom Center, The University of Texas at Austin

Lewis Carroll – Gertrude Chataway, lying on sofa (c.1876) – Harry Ransom Center, The University of Texas at Austin

Everyone knows about Lewis Carroll’s friendship with Alice Pleasance Liddell, who inspired the main character in his famous books Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking-Glass; indeed, after a rowing boat travelling during which Carroll regaled Alice and her two sisters with a fantastic story of a girl named Alice who had fallen into a rabbit-hole, she asked him to write it down, and so came Alice’s Adventures Under Ground, the initial version of the first book. CONTINUE READING / CONTINUER LA LECTURE…

Who loves working class children?

One seldom finds persons who really love all children. Most people show themselves selective in their affection, while some don’t like children at all. Usually it is a family affair, one loves one’s own children, but not those of other people, and this attitude gets a wide support in society, since children are implicitly considered as their parents’ property.

Otherwise, one can have preferences for one age range or for one gender. I can understand this, I am myself guilty of such bias. Boys and girls, older and younger ones, have different minds and quite distinct charms. However I find it more questionable to distaste children because of their ethnicity or their lower social background. CONTINUE READING…

No good work of love goes unrewarded with blood libel

Many famous people become surrounded by a legend after their death. For example Charles Lutwidge Dodgson, the author of the Alice books better known as Lewis Carroll, has been consistently presented as a shy man shunning adults and living only for little girls; some people, in particular psychoanalists, have proclaimed, with the certainty and smugness typical of expert ignorance, that he was beyond any doubt a paedophile. CONTINUE READING…