Miscellaneous Alice > Alice I Have Been: A Novel by Melanie Benjamin

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Re: Alice I Have Been: A Novel by Melanie Benjamin

Postby Guest » Sat Dec 03, 2011 4:45 pm

I just ordered this book, let's see how it goes.
Well, keep an open mind..

It IS a unique book in that Alice herself is the narrator. I won't call the book a masterpiece of prose, but it gives us a glimpse of what may have gone on in the minds of Dodgson and Alice.

Those (who I commented about above) who would wish away not only the slightest insinuation a more than platonic attachment will decry this book.
However, not only did a women write it (thank God!) but it is based on strong circumstantial evidence, and it is put into context of the VICTORIAN ERA!!!

One little proof that I will give you now why we cannot not now judge this book's theme of a possible romantic attachment between Dodgson and Alice with our perverted, 21 st. c. eyes, and why all those who damn this book's premise as something that could not happen, is just a bit of historical reference that no one can deny!!

Let's look at what Dodgson DID do, and what he got away with!!
Dodgson, a grown male adult was allowed to befriend young girls, children whom he had no blood-relationship with, and take them unchaperoned on outings to the beach, the parks, theater, picnics etc. etc. He was allowed to photograph them in many states of undress, sometimes with out anyone else being present!!

Today, a man like Dodgson would at least be viewed as a threat to children, a man acting totally inappropriately, and EVEN if his motives were pure, and innocent, he would be beaten to a pulp by the child's father for even SUGGESTING such a thing!!!
I don't have to play out for you, the state of events that would follow if a man like Dodgson existed today. It would make a great Law & Order SVU.

Also, from a girl child's point of view. I would like to reiterate here that even discounting overt sexuality, girl's were primed to be wives from the time they were born. Some marriages were pre-ordained by the parents before the child was able to walk. Though sex itself was not talked about and repressed, LOVE and long romantic engagements were the rule. and let us not forget that Dodgson was not the only male who swooned over little girls, and Alice herself.
It is KNOWN fact that John Ruskin wanted to marry Alice, and that after marring another young girl who he courted when she was a child, the marriage was annulled by his wife after on their wedding night, he his in terror after realizing that his bride was post-pubescent. He also had an affair with 12 year old Ros La Touche wich actually ended in her going insane! And Ruskin was MUCH OLDER than Dodgson.
I could go on and on about other like the diaries of Francis Kilvert etc etc. but I hope now, the truth deniers will get MY POINT!

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Postby Guest » Sat Dec 03, 2011 6:48 pm

Meh, its another crappy fiction of the neverending "relationship" of Alice and Carroll.

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Postby Guest » Sat Dec 03, 2011 10:39 pm

Meh, its another crappy fiction of the neverending "relationship" of Alice and Carroll.
That's not the point....

And you can't say it's crappy without having read it....

It is better, whether right or wrong, than all other attempts at a fictionalized account of the Carroll/Alice bond. It is also very historically accurate, other than the actual "thoughts" behind the events.

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Postby Guest » Sun Dec 04, 2011 5:38 pm

I love how you jump to conclusions. I've read it. And yes, its another CRAPPY fiction venture.

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Postby Guest » Mon Dec 05, 2011 5:29 pm

I love how you jump to conclusions. I've read it. And yes, its another CRAPPY fiction venture.
Sorry, and I know you can have any op that you want...but it seems that you just dismiss out of hand, any fictional account of an Alice/Carroll relationship.

I would like to counter with this:

You cannot just say something is bad just because you do not care for the subject matter. Since you knew in advance that the book was fiction, why did you read it at all?

You must judge something within the framework of the criteria. So...if you want to compare the book to OTHER fictionalized accounts, so be it, but don't say it was crap when you have already stacked the cards!

I HAVE read this book and this is MY view.

YES, it IS a work of fiction. No one can know what the real Dodgson and Alice were thinking.

However, the was historically accurate, and the author used real events, letters, diary entries to base the fictionalized account. Also, a book with Alice as the narrator was a unique idea too!

Furthermore, the writing was more than adequate. While not a literary masterpiece, the writing did not diminish the book in anyway, and in MY OP, it was written much better than the supposed "true" bios by Leach and Woolf.

By your frame of mind, the movie DREAMCHILD would be considered hogwash, yet on the contrary, despite it's artistic license and small inaccuracies, it is considered a small MASTERPIECE!!!!

Maybe Dennis Potter should have written Alice I Have Been, for it to have been given a fair shake.....

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Postby Guest » Tue Dec 06, 2011 1:10 am

A friend of mine bought it and I read it for a couple of days. Still the book sucks.

And who the hell considers Dreamchild a masterpiece...?!

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Postby Guest » Tue Dec 06, 2011 10:16 pm

And who the hell considers Dreamchild a masterpiece...?![/quote]

Movie critics did, most who have seen it do...
Called a masterpiece, Coral Browne should have won an Oscar (in a review in 1986)



Sure it took liberties, but it was a FANTASTIC movie, and almost EVERYONE agrees that Amelia Shankley was by far the best screen ALICE.

If you don't well, that's your problem...

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Postby Guest » Tue Dec 06, 2011 10:43 pm

But of course!... movie critcs. The same people who consider Twilight or even Avatar a masterpiece...

Good acting is one thing and masterpiece movie as a whole is another. One doesn't necesarily leads to the other.

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Postby Lenny » Wed Dec 07, 2011 7:23 am

I don't want this discussion to get out of hand. It's obvious that this is a matter of taste. Let's accept that opinions differ and get back on topic.

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Alice I Have Been: A Novel by Melanie Benjamin

Postby Lewis Carrie » Mon Jan 02, 2012 9:34 pm

All right, so, I read it. I will say that it is a very well- written book and it paints a very vivid portrait of Victorian life. I did not like the part where Alice was making out with Prince Leopald in that empty marketplace during the Commemoration ball. I do not think that two decent Victorians who were not married to each other would have done something like that, even in private. I also did not like Alice's negative attitude towards Carroll in the scene where she takes her family to Carroll's rooms.

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Re: Alice I Have Been: A Novel by Melanie Benjamin

Postby Guest » Thu Jan 05, 2012 5:12 pm

All right, so, I read it. I will say that it is a very well- written book and it paints a very vivid portrait of Victorian life. I did not like the part where Alice was making out with Prince Leopald in that empty marketplace during the Commemoration ball. I do not think that two decent Victorians who were not married to each other would have done something like that, even in private. I also did not like Alice's negative attitude towards Carroll in the scene where she takes her family to Carroll's rooms.
And why not... sure Victorians are known as prude people but it was not uncommon to see all kinds of affairs. Even extramarital. Doesn't matter if they were decent or not.

The Victorian age was kind of a Wild West. Is a far cry from what you've seen in the movies.

Also never discard the possibility of C.L. Dodgson having some random sexual encounter. He was not a saint and you should stop beatifying him.

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Postby snakes&ladders » Sat Jan 28, 2012 10:16 am

Melanie even looks a bit like Alice:):)
Image
By blackglove at 2012-01-27

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Re: Alice I Have Been: A Novel by Melanie Benjamin

Postby Guest » Sun Jan 29, 2012 3:17 am

All right, so, I read it. I will say that it is a very well- written book and it paints a very vivid portrait of Victorian life. I did not like the part where Alice was making out with Prince Leopald in that empty marketplace during the Commemoration ball. I do not think that two decent Victorians who were not married to each other would have done something like that, even in private. I also did not like Alice's negative attitude towards Carroll in the scene where she takes her family to Carroll's rooms.
And why not... sure Victorians are known as prude people but it was not uncommon to see all kinds of affairs. Even extramarital. Doesn't matter if they were decent or not.

The Victorian age was kind of a Wild West. Is a far cry from what you've seen in the movies.

Also never discard the possibility of C.L. Dodgson having some random sexual encounter. He was not a saint and you should stop beatifying him.
For an insight into the REAL Victorian sexual mores, read Ronald Pearsall's "The Worm in the Bud"

Also, "Child-Loving: The Erotic Child and Victorian Culture" J. Kincaid...these will really shock those who think the Victorians were prudes, or almost asexual.


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