shake that cola drag

The office-block persecution affinity.

Tuesday, February 03, 2004

This is going to be a particularly dorky girlie entry, and I apologise in advance. If you didn't know, I have a wee collection of early twentieth century children's literature. Some of them belonged to my grandmother and great-aunts, but I've supplemented my volumes occasionally. Siobhan and I were always keen on going to Prince Edward Island to see the setting for Anne of Green Gables - or as the Japanese tourists call her, Anne of Red Hair! I have been re-reading the books, as I am wont to do with my girlie-stories collection every now and then. Even though some parts of them are hopelessly idealistic and deluded, and even though L. M. Montgomery's casual racism towards the French is often jarring, they're mostly very comforting and sweet and funny. They make me wish Anne was a real person! But I get progressively sadder and sadder as I read. By Anne's House of Dreams, I get sad for Marilla because she loses Anne to Glen St. Mary... why couldn't Anne stay in Avonlea and raise her family? I get sad in Anne of Ingleside because I know it's the last book devoted almost entirely to Anne herself; and I get sadder still reading Rilla of Ingleside, not only because Anne is just Rilla's mother 'Mrs Blythe', and I miss her being Anne; but because World War I is the book's most important plot device, and Montgomery is so completely idiotic about that war and what it meant. She was writing in the 1920s, of course, so she wasn't to know that her rhetoric about the Great War 'saving the world' and 'stopping all future wars' was totally meaningless. But it still makes that book basically unsatisfying on a lot of levels - and it's the last time we see Anne! It's a depressing farewell. I shouldn't really grumble, though. The run from Anne of Green Gables to Anne of Windy Willows is all joy... and how many other well-loved heroines do we stay with for the best part of forty years?


Post a Comment

<< Home