The Curmudgeon


Saturday, July 24, 2010

Five Get Forcibly Evolved

Since Enid Blyton's books have appealed to generation after generation of children, her publishers are "sensitively and carefully" altering them in case their appeal should be insufficient for the ignorance and incuriosity of modern readers. Hodder still sell more than half a million copies a year of the Famous Five books alone, but evidently this is not enough. Accordingly, the books will be made available in revised editions so that the kind of people for whose benefit "colorisation" was once inflicted on black-and-white films will not miss out. Readers who cannot understand exclamations such as "mercy me!", or words like "peculiar" and "fellow", will be pandered to with appropriate monosyllables; while outmoded expressions will be replaced with "timeless" ones in order to save children the trouble of realising that people used to think and speak differently from the way they do now. Andy Briggs, a bestselling children's author who is scrambling aboard the remake bandwagon over the corpse of Edgar Rice Burroughs, observed that "language just changes, it evolves", and claims that children are incapable of relating to characters who speak in an archaic fashion. Hence, if the likes of Sherlock Holmes and Tarzan are not updated, or at least deadened into some sort of amaranthine Volap√ľk, they will fall out of print, as in the regrettable cases of Alice in Wonderland, The Hundred and One Dalmatians, The Story of the Treasure Seekers, Just So Stories and so forth.


  • At 1:24 am , Blogger phil said...

    Mr Summerfield needs to learn not to end his sentences with prepositions.

  • At 1:36 am , Blogger Philip said...

    Mr Summerfield sounds as if he was a bit nervous when speaking whereof he was in approval of.

  • At 7:44 am , Blogger phil said...

    I was going to say he sounded a bit peculiar. Not queer, just strange.

    Oh, and look at the WV: "duncesse." That'd be ex-Princess Fergie, n'est pas?


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