Thursday, August 08, 2013

Thursday, August 08, 2013 2:16 pm by M. in , , , , ,    No comments
edge on the Net reviews the US Blu-ray edition of Les Soeurs Brontë 1979:
The biopic is greatly enhanced by the Blu-ray’s additional materials, including a feature-length audio commentary provided by NPR’s critic Wade Major and Brontë scholar Sue Lonoff de Cuevas. As the two parse the movie, revealing metaphors, references and contexts, suddenly those with only a slim knowledge of these famous sisters, can appreciate Téchiné’s depths and subtleties as a film-maker and storyteller. An hour-long documentary of interviews with Téchiné and others provides further insights and tidbits about the tensions amongst the cast and crew, making this Blu-ray well worthwhile for any Brontë aficionado. (Monique Rubens Krohn)
The Shields Gazette publishes that maybe there will be a Charlotte Brontë street on the Persimmon development off Orwell Close in Biddick Hall, South Shields:
[Coun Olive Punchion, Labour member for Biddick and All Saints] said: “We have researched all the streets and most of them are named after authors. I have been through my encyclopaedia and found out when they were born and when they died.
“There are only two women, Jane Austen and Elizabeth Gaskell, so when we get the new streets there are going to be some female writers.
“It would be nice if they were all women – but maybe not that one who wrote Fifty Shades of Grey!”
Coun Punchion has already come up with Charlotte Bronte, who penned Jane Eyre.
The Independent reviews the Bridget Campbell show at the Edinburgh Fringe:
It is not just feminists, after all, who can appreciate the absurdity of Bic bringing out a range of pretty, pastel-coloured pens "for women" - something Christie illustrates with a playlet imagining how much better the Brontës might have been if their quills hadn't been so drab and heavy. (Alice Jones)
The Irish Times talks about a different Jane Eyre:
The [St Nicholas] Collegiate Church, as it’s known, claims the title of “largest medieval parish church in Ireland still in constant use”. And it has had some very famous visitors down the centuries, none more so that Christopher Columbus, who “almost certainly” worshipped there during a visit to Galway in 1477.
Its former parishioners include another very well-known name: Jane Eyre. No, not the fictional character created by Charlotte Brontë. This was a very pious woman who, in 1760, according to a wall plaque, donated £300 to a fund from which “the yearly sum of £24 [was] to be distributed in bread to 36 poor objects on every Sunday for ever”.
Forever is a long time, unfortunately. Although you could probably still find 36 “poor objects” on any given Sunday in Galway without difficulty, the Jane Eyre perpetual bread scheme seems to have lapsed at some point. According to the church website, “what happened to the £300 is unknown”.
Flavorwire lists several of the most famous Austen-haters. And yes, Charlotte Brontë is there, top of the list:
Brontë seems to have greatly resented Austen’s lack of sentiment. To her friend George Lewes (who happened to be George Eliot’s lover), who had told her to try writing more like Austen, she once sniped, “I had not seen Pride and Prejudice till I had read that sentence of yours, and then I got the book. And what did I find? An accurate daguerrotyped [photographed] portrait of a commonplace face; a carefully fenced, highly cultivated garden, with neat borders and delicate flowers; but no glance of a bright vivid physiognomy, no open country, no fresh air, no blue hill, no bonny beck [stream]. I should hardly like to live with her ladies and gentlemen, in their elegant but confined houses.”
This opinion Brontë apparently continued to hold for some time. To another friend, years later, she added, “I have likewise read one of Miss Austen’s works, Emma — read it with interest and with just the degree of admiration which Miss Austen herself would have thought sensible and suitable — anything like warmth or enthusiasm, anything energetic, poignant, or heartfelt, is utterly out of place in commending these works: all such demonstrations the authoress would have met with a well bred sneer, would have calmly scorned as outré and extravagant. She does her business of delineating the surface of the lives of genteel English people curiously well; there is a Chinese fidelity, a miniature delicacy in the painting: she ruffles her reader by nothing vehement, disturbs him by nothing profound: the Passions are perfectly unknown to her; she rejects even a speaking acquaintance with that stormy Sisterhood; even to the Feelings she vouchsafes no more than an occasional graceful but distant recognition; too frequent converse with them would ruffle the smooth elegance of her progress.” (Michelle Dean)
BBC America's Anglophenia talks about the shooting of the BBC adaptation of The Thirteenth Tale scheduled to be broadcast next Christmas:
Much of the filming will reportedly take place in Burton Agnes Hall’s Red Drawing Room, a nod to the red room in Jane Eyre, the classic novel that influenced Setterfield’s work. (Erin Janosik)
PJ Media publishes this rather obvious statement:
Not all main characters in books, TV shows, or plays are likable. Frank Underwood in House of Cards is a rotten scoundrel. Henry VIII in The Tudors vacillates between warm and ice cold. Emma Woodhouse in Jane Austen’s Emma is whiny and stuck up, Yossarian in Catch-22 is self-centered, and Katherine in Wuthering Heights is selfish and picks money over her true heart — leading to the misery that is unleashed on her family by the jilted Heathcliff. (Becky Graebner)
Why we feel that they are not doing any favour to the Brontës when they say a thing like this in the Dade County Sentinel:
Furthermore, romance is a category that has always covered a lot of ground, from the exalted narration of the Brontë sisters to the humbler prose of the garden-variety bodice ripper, and these days it has gotten even more diverse. “They have historical, small-town romance, paranormal, suspense,” said Ms. Wilson.
Also, from a cursory glance at the shelves: Western, medical, mystery, literary – one whole series is offshorts of, and sequels to, Jane Eye – and, get this, gustatory. One title the Sentinel observed was Vanity Fare: A Novel of Lattes, Literature and Love.
Fox23 also considers the book  a romantic story.

The National (UAE) reviews A Curse on Dostoevsky by Atiq Rahimi
When not distorting or cannibalising past plots and themes, reverentially or otherwise, writers have lifted characters from recognised classics and presented their novels as extensions or outgrowths: JM Coetzee's Foe returns us to Defoe's desert island and Crusoe and Friday; Jean Rhys's Wide Sargasso Sea, an inventive prequel to Jane Eyre, follows the fortunes of Charlotte Brontë's madwoman in the attic. (Malcolm Forbes)
Keighley News remembers that The Haworth Craft Fair is coming:
And local crafters and producers will showcase their talents at the latest Haworth Craft Fair in the Bronte School Room, Haworth, 10am until 4pm from August 24 to 26.
Il Cittadino Oggi Corriere Nazionale (Italy) reviews the novel Miss Charity by  Marie-Aude Murail:
Elementi, questi, cui terrà sempre fede in età adulta. C’è sicuramente un pizzico di Jane Austen nei dialoghi, nelle caratterizzazioni dei personaggi e negli intrecci che si vengono a creare fra loro, ma anche tanto Dickens e tanto sorelle Brontë, con in più un velo di Oscar Wilde e una spruzzata di George Bernard Shaw. (Sergio Rotino) (Translation)
El País (Costa Rica) talks about one of the most singular jobs we can think of. It's in Cuba: reader on a tobacco factory:
Shakespeare, Dumas, "Cumbres borrascosas" de Emily Brontë, enumera [Odalys] Lara algunas de sus lecturas. También las novelas de Gabriel García Márquez, "El coronel no tiene quien le escriba", "Cien años de soledad", prácticamente todas. Los libros, cuenta, los proponen los trabajadores y pasan a una comisión de lectura encargada de hacer la selección final. (Isaac Risco) (Translation) 
nachrichten (Austria) and Mail & Guardian (South-Africa) mention the Brontës as pseudonym-users.


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