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Chibiabos83
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Joined: 19 Nov 2008
Posts: 3389


Location: Cambridge, UK

PostPosted: Wed Apr 28, 2010 7:29 pm    Post subject: Roald Dahl  Reply with quote

Although it hasn't been officially given the go-ahead, my proposal to write my Masters dissertation on Roald Dahl's children's books has been tacitly approved. This is an exciting prospect. I have to tie it in somehow with library issues, so intend to look at objections and attempts to censor his books and the questions raised by such challenges for libraries. I should be able to spend quite a bit of time looking at the text, though.

This means I have a convenient excuse not only to revisit some of my favourite children's books but also to read the handful that have passed me by. I'll be focusing on it for three months from the beginning of June to the end of August.

To help me get in the mood, do you have any favourite Dahl books, characters or passages? I've put this thread in the children's books section, but that needn't restrict you. Discovering his writings for adults was a great joy to me in my late teens, though it is his children's books I know best. Favourites? The BFG, George's Marvellous Medicine, Fantastic Mr Fox and The Giraffe and the Pelly and Me - this last one not his best known book, but I think one of the most lovable. I'll write more later.


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Evie
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Joined: 24 Oct 2008
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Location: Kenilworth, Warwickshire, UK

PostPosted: Wed Apr 28, 2010 7:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well done, Chibiabos - for finding an interesting subject for your dissertation, I mean!  All the friends I had who did the librarianship course at Bristol wrote their dissertations on the most boring topics imaginable, so I am very impressed that you are actually writing yours about *books*!


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TheRejectAmidHair



Joined: 19 Nov 2008
Posts: 3864


Location: Staines, Middlesex

PostPosted: Wed Apr 28, 2010 7:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have a soft spot for George's Marvllous Medicine, especially as my boy used to enjoy my reading it out to him.

I draw the line at The Twits, though. There's a particularly objectionable passage where Dahl takes the piss out of men with beards.




Last edited by TheRejectAmidHair on Wed Apr 28, 2010 7:57 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Chibiabos83
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Joined: 19 Nov 2008
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Location: Cambridge, UK

PostPosted: Wed Apr 28, 2010 7:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The only way you can get away with a remotely literary topic is if you write something related to children's library provision, and I read so many children's books anyway that it required practically no thought at all. Browsing past dissertation titles ("Management of agricultural information in developing countries with special reference to Sri Lanka" and the like) makes me appreciate the opportunity of focusing on books and what's in them. There's a fascinating range of things people have written about, though, particularly on historical topics - "A look at females and stereotyping in young children's literature", "The town library at Wisbech from its foundation until 1700", "George Eliot's reading: a brief survey", "Christian morality in Victorian children's literature" and so on. Could be fun.


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Chibiabos83
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Joined: 19 Nov 2008
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Location: Cambridge, UK

PostPosted: Wed Apr 28, 2010 7:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Himadri, I won't be so indelicate as to enquire what you may have stuck in your beard at the moment. I will just have to make assumptions.


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Caro



Joined: 22 Nov 2008
Posts: 2960


Location: Owaka, New Zealand

PostPosted: Wed Apr 28, 2010 10:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Somehow though of course I am very familiar in one sense with Roald Dahl his works haven't become part of my life to any degree.  Perhaps they are books which kids read to themselves more than have read to them, and they weren't around when I was a child.  We had a tape of some rhymes of his whose titles I can't quite remember.  Quite cruel versions of fairy tales or nursery rhymes.  And very very funny.

My son loves Matilda to the extent that he thought naming a child Matilda would be a good thing.  (He can't be the only one thinking that, as I note Matilda has made a comeback in the last two or three years.  Or is that coming from other source?)

Cheers, Caro.


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Mikeharvey



Joined: 22 Nov 2008
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Location: Lancashire

PostPosted: Thu Apr 29, 2010 8:54 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I rather like 'Esio Trot'.


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blackberrycottage



Joined: 23 Nov 2008
Posts: 240


Location: Barnsley Yorkshire

PostPosted: Thu Apr 29, 2010 9:13 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have only read 'Charlie and The Chocolate Factory'. I remember Esio Trot on Radio 5 in the early days. After the 7pm news there was a sort of bedtime story, and Esio Trot was one of those. Radio 5 then went on to the adult sport/media programmes.

I am currently reading a book set in Malaysia, and alongside the politics and differences between Indians, Tamils, Malaysians, Ex colonials, rich and poor, the name dropping of bought Western food products as an indication of wealth and status is the revelation that on TV they had Little House on The Prairie. What must they have thought of that?


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Chibiabos83
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 29, 2010 9:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Esio Trot's one of the ones I don't know at all but am looking forward to, Mike. Currently in a pile with other ones I haven't read. I must confess I have not hitherto been fond of the small amount of (often quite gruesome) poetry, but perhaps that will change. I don't remember much about it. His collection Rhyme Stew was quite controversial on its publication because of sexual references, and now bears a warning on the cover that young children should stay away...


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Gul Darr



Joined: 21 Nov 2008
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Location: King's Lynn

PostPosted: Thu Apr 29, 2010 1:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

My favourite is Danny, The Champion of the World. I read it together with my family, a few chapters a night, during one camping holiday and everyone enjoyed it immensely. A great memory.



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