Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Helen Huntingdon's client list

The new TV series The Client List has inspired The Atlantic to reflect on 'A Cultural History of Sexy Single-Moms-Turned-Criminals'. Anne Brontë's The Tenant of Wildfell Hall is discussed at length in connection to it:

The Client List isn't the only example of single-momsploitation out there. In fact, several recent shows have mined this territory. (...)
There are also some earlier precedents—such as Anne Brontë's The Tenant of Wildfell Hall (1848). Tenant is usually thought of as a feminist novel, illustrating the plight of Victorian women in abusive relationships. It certainly is that...but looking back at it from the perspective of The Client List and its kin, you can also make out, somewhat incongruously, the outlines of single-momsploitation.
The heroine of Tenant is Helen Graham, a woman who, we eventually learn, has fled from her abusive husband, and is now posing as a widow, so that he cannot find her and force her and her son to return to him (divorce wasn't legal for women at the time). We first see Helen through the eyes of the narrator Gilbert Markham, a young gentlemen farmer in the neighborhood to which she has moved. Gilbert finds Helen's son, Arthur, climbing over the wall of her property and catches him before he falls. (Noah Berlatsky) (Read more)
Another new TV series is Bates Motel. The International Digital Times mentions it Jane Eyre reference and Vulture interviews Freddie Highmore, who plays the young Norman:
It’s startling to see you so tall, and so … extra close to Vera Farmiga in this show. Yeah, when he says, “I love you,” to her in the boat? He’s all, “There’s a cord between our hearts,” and you think, Hmmm, this is a bit much. But then he goes, “Ha-ha, Jane Eyre; I was just joking with you, Mom.” It’s like Chekov’s gun, isn’t it? (Denise Martin)
KQED's Pop lists some relevant women film directors, such as Andrea Arnold:
One day I will stop writing about and being freakishly obsessed with Wuthering Heights but that day hasn’t come yet.  Andrea Arnold’s 2011 adaptation is so good it took my freakish obsession to whole new levels and explored the horror of the story as much as the romance. It’s quiet, gloomy, dimly lit, devastating and by far the closest thing to how the book seems in my head. (Laura Schadler)
Audiophile Audition discusses Antonín Dvořák's 12 Cypresses (Cypřiše) and thinks that
A haunted majesty imbues No. 10 “There stands the ancient rock,” a conceit that might have informed Brontë’s Wuthering Heights. (Gary Lemco)
It's just a way of speaking, as the same article explains that the idea was
conceived in the ardor of first love during the 1860s, when Dvořák set his eye on Josefina Cermakova. Dvořák would arrange his original songs as quartet movements in 1887, then to be withheld from publication until 1921, when his son-in-law Josef Suk revised them. (Gary Lemco)
ABC (Spain) features the Argentinian writer Betina González and her novel Las poseídas:
Doctorada en Literatura por la universidad de Pittsburgh, González comenzó a imaginar «Las poseídas» hace años, en sus lecturas de las hermanas Brontë.
En la literatura latinoamericana, subraya, no existen novelas de iniciación con protagonismo femenino: «Quería aportar una mirada adolescente y femenina, que no feminista, desde la oscuridad y no desde el romanticismo. La adolescencia es cruel y, en lo que respecta a la mujer, esa crueldad adopta un estilo refinado y meticuloso, más complejo que el del hombre…» (Translation)
A crazy idea from Exeposé:
Exeposé Online occupied the Forum last week to promote the website and force students to participate in silly games, like Guitar Hero, which certainly doesn’t seem that heroic to us. Anyway, the free cake has already been widely publicised but you could also get involved with the Screen section by coming up with an idea for a film or TV show and dropping it in our Film Pitch Box.
We wanted your imaginations to be as crazy and colourful as possible. [...]
And now, the Top Five!
5) Christopher Walken is Jane Eyre - he’d be brilliant, wouldn’t he?
A Musical Feast reviews Villette. Reading Rambo posts about Jane Eyre while Bookish Whimsy reviews (and shares) the 1950 adaptation with Donna Reed as Jane and Vincent Price as Rochester and Elegance of Fashion reviews the 1983 film adaptation. Work-in-progress posts about Sabin Willet's Abide with Me and Danielle's Book Thoughts gives 3.5 out of 5 stars to Tina Connolly's Ironskin. Finally, an alert from Badajoz (Spain) as the Centro de Ocio Contemporáneo. Cine Club del Ayuntamiento de Badajoz will screen today Wuthering Heights 2011 (Hoy).

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