Friday, December 19, 2014

Brontë Cardigan

A Brontë cardigan? We have it on Plümo:

Bronte Cardigan
Code YFK077

Long knitted slate-grey cardigan with draped shawl collar. Deep ribbed cuffs and hem. 2 slanted side pockets. L125cm. Pure lambswool. Cool hand wash. One Size
Rhiannon Harris in The Independent talks about it:
This blue-grey lambswool beauty – romantically called the Bronte – is way too luxe to look a mere concession to comfort (£249,, above). To make absolutely sure you're modish, keep everything sharp and simple underneath.

Thursday, December 18, 2014

A 'mass of original material'

The Northern Echo features Juliet Barker and she speaks about her former job at the Brontë Parsonage and how her famous biography of the Brontës came to be.

Her first and only “proper” job after leaving Oxford, where she studied history, was as librarian and curator at The Brontë Parsonage in Haworth. “I would see writers coming in and researching for their books, but most of them them just looked at what other people had written. They ignored all that mass of original material we had there just waiting to be looked at.”
In the end, she was driven to write her own – much acclaimed – biography of the Brontës, which turned previous accounts pretty much on their head. “We’ve all bought Mrs Gaskell’s version of this isolated family living miles from nowhere, but Haworth is just four miles from Keighley. By the time the Brontës were there, it was a busy industrial area with 15 mills.”
As part of her decade of research Juliet spent read two years reading local newspapers of the time. “Addled my brain, but gave me so much information about the Brontës in the community that no one had ever bothered with before,” she says.
The Brontës ended up as a stonking great book, winning awards and establishing her as a writer who really knew her stuff. Despite its scholarship, it’s wonderfully readable.
“I hate it when academics just seem to write in their own language for each other and ignore everyone else,” says this Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature fiercely, over a cappuccino in the Little Chocolate Shop in Leyburn. “I want my books to be for anyone who’s interested.”
So she writes and rewrites them to get the tone just right, “treading that fine line between not making assumptions about how much people know, but not talking down to them either”. [...[
She has, she says, no great plans for another book ticking away at the back of her brain. “But there are a lot of anniversaries coming up in the next few years… Agincourt, various Brontës…”
You can be sure she’s not going to be sitting idly, resting on her laurels. She’s much too Yorkshire for that. (Sharon Griffiths)
PQ Monthly has an article on Céline Dion:
For a glimpse of the career she might have had, had she and her managers desired to position as more of a daring, envelope-pushing artist, one can turn to “It’s All Coming Back to Me Now,” in which she collaborated with Meatloaf producer Jim Steinman. Inspired by “Wuthering Heights,” Steinman described this as his attempt to write “the most passionate, romantic song” he could. (Leela Ginelle)
Culturamas (Spain) mentions that Le Fanu's tale A Chapter in the History of a Tyrone Family may have influenced Jane Eyre.

Brontë Christmas Decorations

Bronte inspired range — at Keelham Farm Shop.
Brontë Christmas Decorations from Keelham Farm Shop:
Brontë sisters (Haworth)

Keelham Farm Shop shares the same rugged moorland landscape as the Brontë sisters who provided the inspiration for some of British literature’s greatest heroines. A sterling selection of silvery candlestick holders adds a dramatic touch to soft lighting for this warm and rich range of decorations which include Victorian top hats, lush burgundy hearts and vintage cameo tree ornaments.
Finally, fill your house with the aroma of Christmas – you’ll find our pick and mix pot pourri in the Flower Barn so you can create your own gorgeous Christmas scent.

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Emily Brontë on current events

Big Think picks a quote from Wuthering Heights as 'words of wisdom'.

Emily Brontë (1818-1848) was an English novelist and poet whose only novel, Wuthering Heights, is concerned a classic in the British literary canon. Together with sisters Charlotte and Anne, the Brontës are considered one of the great families of literary tradition, though one of the major reasons for their fame is that none of the six Brontë siblings lived to see 40. This tragedy is likely attributable to unsanitary water sources near the family home.
The following quote, spoken by the character Isabella Linton in Wuthering Heights, is one that is so steeped in moral universalism that it transcends time. It's certainly resonant in the wake of current events: from terrorist violence in the Middle East and abroad to the U.S. Senate torture report released this month.
"Treachery and violence are spears pointed at both ends — they wound those who resort to them worse than their enemies."
-from Wuthering Heights, the character Isabella Linton (Ch. XVII).
Writer Jennifer Dawson picks Jane Eyre as one of her three favourite books on USA Today's Happy Ever After.
Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë. Honestly, it was a tossup between this and Pride and Prejudice, but I'm going through a bit of a dark, Gothic phase so settled on Jane Eyre. Hands down one of my favorite books. How can you not love a brooding Mr. Rochester? I still remember the first time I read it in school. I was reluctant, but it sucked me right in as soon as I started reading and I stayed up half the night because I couldn't put it down.
More fans of Jane Eyre to be found on The Pitch.
Charlotte Brontë's Jane Eyre was perhaps English literature's first feminist, an independent woman guided by heart and instinct rather than by society's expectations. The four young women in Miry Wild have taken their band's name from a phrase in Brontë's 1847 landmark — a reference I keep in mind when I drop in on their weekly practice at keyboardist and guitarist Holly Grimwood's Raytown home. (Natalie Gallagher)
The Herald (Scotland) discusses endings after watching the 'disappointing finale of The Missing'. SPOILERS alert.
I assume then we just make up our own minds about Tony's sanity, but that's rather a cop-out. Great works of literature can have uncertain endings, like Charlotte Bronte's agonising Villette, but this isn't great art and so it should have done its job and concluded properly. To do otherwise is just frustrating, especially after making us wait throughout eight long episodes. (Julie McDowall)
The Independent mentions the editorial influences of writers.
Mary Shelley tested Frankenstein out on Lord Byron. The Brontë sisters constantly read their work to one other. Jeffrey Archer's prose was unintelligible until Mary weaved her "fragrant" magic, allegedly. (Saul Wordsworth)
The Sydney Morning Herald finds out what two people with the same name have in common.
They enjoy the same preppy dress style (Yongxin in a polo shirt, Ruichen in boat shoes) and the same favourite quote from Wuthering Heights ("I am Heathcliff!"). (Konrad Marshall)

Bit Players in Wuthering Heights

This article in The Boylston Banner about the publication of the third installment of the Bit Players Series by S.M. Stevens has brought to our attention that the second had a very Brontë setting:

Bit Players, Bullies and Righteous Rebelsby S. M. Stevens
ISBN-13: 978-1481015103
December 7, 2012

Sadie Perkins just wants the Crudup High drama club's spring musical to go smoothly, but the original production of "Wuthering Heights: A Modern Tragedy" is threatened when an anonymous texter starts bullying Sadie's gay friend Foster, the lead in the play. And Sadie's boyfriend Alex is suddenly acting homophobic, making Sadie wonder if she really knows him at all. On top of that, she has to add a controversial, secret song-and-dance number to the show behind the director's back, to impress the professor from the Yale School of Drama. Find out how it all ends up in this sequel to "Bit Players, Has-Been Actors and Other Posers". Bit Players is one of the only Young Adult series set in the theatre world. More theatre resources are available at and the Bit Players Pinterest page.

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Those horrible things!

Winston View on what to give book lovers for Christmas:

For the book lover, there are pretty hard cover editions of classic novels like Jane Eyre, Sense and Sensibility, Pride and Prejudice, and Wuthering Heights.  These books are budget friendly, coming in at under $20. It doesn’t matter if she already has a copy; these beautiful hard covers will quickly replace the old paperback she has on the shelf. She’ll be so happy you took her love of a classic novel to the next level by giving her the ability to read a hard cover edition, the way these books were meant to be read. (Scott Heggen)
While film lovers may enjoy this compilation by IndieWire's The Playlist: The 20 Best Movie Posters Of 2014.
16. “Winter Sleep
Divisive as Nuri Bilge Ceylan’s epic Palme d’Or winner is around these parts, it is at times certainly very beautiful. This one-sheet, a clever mix of Drew Struzan and what looks like rotoscoping, encapsulates that harsh beauty, but also gets at the bookish tone of the film, and the fraught relationship between the central husband and wife, with the snowy wind whipping their hair about as the man hides his face in... shame? Defeat? Exhaustion? The generous wide vista puts the Cathy-and-Heathcliff vibe into context though, something that, arguably, the film, with its tendency for tighter, more claustrophobic interior shots, could use more of.
More Wuthering Heights inspiration behind films as 411 Mania lists the top 8 'high fantasy films':
#5: Labyrinth (1986)
Labyrinth is one of those films that does start in the real world, but it quickly transitions to the realm of high fantasy. Jim Henson directed this film and while its failure to become a financial success effectively ended his career behind the camera, it is one that he can be proud of on a creative level. Jennifer Connelly fulfills the “hero on a quest” role as Sarah, a girl who must rescue her baby brother from David Bowie’s goblin king Jareth before he’s claimed forever. Henson relied on his puppetry pedigree to make this one work, combining darker elements with very kind-friendly stuff to make an odd sort of film that appeals to many different types of people. Bowie does fine work as the evil Jareth and designer Brian Froud did amazing work, using literary sources such as Wuthering Heights as an inspiration for his visuals. It has become recognized as one of the greats of that era, and rightly so. (Jeremy Thomas)
The Los Angeles Times recalls Wanda Coleman's early experiences of public libraries:
In her 2005 book “The Riot Inside Me,” Coleman recalls her early visits to the library, although even there, she writes, she was required to work the system: “At that time,” she tells us, “books were segregated — you had boys’ literature and girls’ literature. When I went to the library (Ascot and Downtown branches), I could read ‘Cheryl Crane, Nurse,” books by the Brontë sisters, and Nancy Drew mysteries — yes, those horrible things! But I wasn’t allowed to read Sir Arthur Conan Doyle or H.P. Lovecraft — the boy’s books.”
Her solution? “I would have my father go to the library with me. I would pick out what I wanted and he would check the books out. … Then I could read to my heart’s content!” (David L. Ulin)
Petoskey News has an article on flowering plants and quotes from The Tenant of Wildfell Hall:
Personally, I have had a special affinity for the white hellebore or ‘Christmas rose’. In Anne Brontë’s 1848 novel, The Tenant of Wildfell Hall, her intrepid hero leaps out the window for his love to pluck a handful of the flowers blooming in the snow. Based on the novel’s description, however, I still had no idea what I was seeing when I first spotted a wooded English hillside covered with hellebores in full bloom. (Mary Agria)
The Starving Artist reviews Wide Sargasso Sea.

Wuthering Heights on Stories

Today, December 16, opens in Bologna a new photographic exhibition with a Brontë connection:

Paolo Gotti
un viaggio tra fotografia e letteratura

16 dicembre 2014 - 19 febbraio 2015
inaugurazione 16 dicembre ore 18,30

Foyer Teatro Duse, Bologna
Il 16 dicembre 2014 alle ore 18,30 nel foyer del Teatro Duse di Bologna inaugura la mostra STORIES. Un viaggio tra fotografia e letteratura del fotografo Paolo Gotti. La mostra prende ispirazione dalle trame avvincenti di alcuni tra i più celebri romanzi di tutti i tempi a livello internazionale.
Il libro mette in scena la complessità del mondo, ne è la sua fotografia. Ma se il libro è il riflesso della realtà, è altrettanto vero che la realtà trova spesso ispirazione nei libri.
Con la serie fotografica STORIES il fotografo bolognese Paolo Gotti conduce un’indagine diametralmente opposta rispetto a quella dell’editore alla ricerca della copertina di un libro. Gotti è partito, infatti, dalle immagini fotografiche che ha scattato personalmente nei suoi innumerevoli viaggi intorno al mondo per ritrovare poi le trame a cui potrebbero essere idealmente collegate. Ad ogni immagine è associata una citazione tratta, di volta in volta, da libri diversissimi tra di loro: grandi classici e romanzi contemporanei, raccolte di racconti o narrazioni storiche.
Ed ecco dunque che si susseguono una dopo l’altra le interpretazioni visive di Robinson Crusoe (1719) di Daniel Defoe, Cime tempestose (1847) di Emily Brontë, Anna Karenina (1877) di Lev Tolstoj, L’isola del tesoro (1883) di Robert Louis Stevenson, Racconti dei mari del sud (1921) di William Somerset Maugham, Sulla strada (1957) di Jack Keruac
Cent’anni di solitudine (1967) di Gabriel García Márquez, Il nome della rosa (1980) di Umberto Eco, La polvere del Messico (1992) di Pino Cacucci, Oceano Mare (1993) di Alessandro Baricco, Vergogna (1999) di J. M. Coetzee, per finire con La strada (2006) di Cormac Mc Carthy.
“Non avrei potuto scegliermi un altro posto più lontano dal frastuono della società.
E’ il paradiso del perfetto misantropo: e il signor Heathcliff ed io siamo fatti apposta per dividerci tanta solitudine… „
EMILY BRONTË da Cime tempestose (1847)
13 immagini per 12 romanzi di autori differenti che Paolo Gotti ha amato, che in qualche modo hanno scandito la sua storia personale, così come i suoi viaggi e le sue fotografie, che il fotografo compie ormai da quarant’anni attraverso tutto il pianeta.
Il monumentale repertorio fotografico di Gotti conta infatti oltre 10.000 fotografie scattate in oltre 70 paesi nei cinque continenti.
L’unico romanzo che è citato in due immagini differenti è Cent’anni di solitudine di Gabriel García Márquez, in omaggio alla recente scomparsa del grande scrittore.
Oltre ai pannelli fotografici di grandi e medie dimensioni, verrà presentato il calendario tematico 2015 dal titolo STORIES. Un viaggio tra fotografia e letteratura. (Translation)

Monday, December 15, 2014

'I want to read Jane Eyre to my sons and teach my daughters car maintenance'

Perth Now publishes an extract from Genevieve Gannon’s new book, Husband Hunters.

‘Marriage seems like a sham sometimes,’ said Clementine sadly. ‘I’d never made it a priority before, but I’m starting to realise I do want—’
‘Love?’ Annabel asked.
‘A family?’ said Daniela at the same time.
‘Well, all the trappings,’ said Clementine. ‘I’ve seen enough failed marriages to know I shouldn’t rely on a big white wedding to make me happy forever. But I do want children. I want to read the Brontë and Mitford sisters to my daughters, and I want to show my sons how to change a tyre. Come to that, I want to read Jane Eyre to my sons and teach my daughters car maintenance.’
Alison May has re-read Wuthering Heights. The Book Trail traces a literary route from Wide Sargasso Sea until Jane Stubbs's Thornfield Hall passing by, obviously, Jane Eyre.

And--erm--that's it for today.

Inky Brontësaurus

Via this tweet by Emma Butcher we have discovered this illustration by Niroot Puttapipat as posted last summer on his blog:

Brontësaurus‏. Sepia ink and gouache on Strathmore grey toned paper, 151 x 147mm.
My literary and palaeo friends and audiences so rarely converge (which is a great pity), but I’m jolly well going to try.

Sunday, December 14, 2014

Make it buzz all year round

The Brontë Society president, Bonnie Greer is trying to implement her recently expressed wishes to increase the collaboration of the Society and local organisations and business. In Keighley News:
Brontë Society president Bonnie Greer has pledged to work with Haworth organisations and local politicians on future projects.
She this week told the Keighley News that such partnerships would help make the most of three upcoming Brontë bicentenaries. (...)
Ms Greer, a playwright and novelist, said she and her Advisory Group hoped to team up with whoever wanted to work with them on the “exciting” events.
She said this was an expression of her support for the Brontë Society Council, museum staff and leadership team.
She added “This is also an expression of support for those who are looking towards the future - and not back at the past - as we build towards a key cultural event.”
Ms Greer made her comments following a turbulent few months for the Brontë Society as its members clashed over the direction of the 120-year-old organisation.
Some critics demanded the society work more closely with the Haworth community.
Ms Greer subsequently set up her advisory group with expert members including a BBC Radio director, and said she hoped to add a handful of local residents and.
She said she wanted to boost visitor numbers to Haworth and “make it buzz all year round”.
John Huxley, chairman of Haworth, Stanbury and Cross Roads Parish Council, welcomed the chance to work with the Brontë Society and Ms Greer for the good of the village.
But he pointed out that in recent years the Brontës had been joined by other major attractions in the village, such as the Keighley and Worth Valley Railway, Haworth Festival and the 1940s weekend.
He said: “Everything needs to be integrated. A vibrant Brontë Society working in conjunction with other event organisers in the community would obviously be an asset.” (David Knights)
The wonders of a box set in Los Angeles Times:
The best box sets are their own worlds, aural encapsulations so fully imagined that five or six hours becomes something to get lost in, like a Brontë sisters bender or a Martin Scorsese weekend. (Randall Roberts)
Kitap Gurmesi interviews the writer Kimberly Freeman:
There are boks that everyone's life is affected. Do you have books to read you didn't give up on you ?And this book have helped your novel ?
I have read a lot of books and all of them have affected me and my writing in different ways. One very important book for me has been Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë. It has a great central female character.
onceudigital (Spain) reviews Wuthering Heights; Les Soeurs Brontë posts a particularly sad moment of Jane Eyre: Christmas in Gateshead.


The new book by Carys Davis contains a Brontë-related short story which was previously published in the Red Room collection published in 2013:
The Redemption of Galen Pike
Carys Davies
Publication Date: 15-Oct-14
ISBN: 9781907773716
Salt Publishing

In a remote Australian settlement a young wife with an untellable secret reluctantly invites her neighbour into her home. A Quaker spinster offers companionship to a condemned murderer in a Colorado jail. A tourist, mistaken for a god, finds his position questioned by the beautiful maid sent to look after him. In the ice and snows of Siberia an office employee from Birmingham witnesses a scene that will change her life. At a jubilee celebration in a northern English town a middle-aged alderman opens his heart to Queen Victoria. High in the Cumbrian fells a woman seeks help from her father’s enemy.

The seventeen stories in The Redemption of Galen Pike are about how little we ever know of other people and the unpredictable bonds that spring up between us when our worlds collide. 
The Yorkshire Post gives a few more details:
Each story is a perfectly distilled, intense slice of life and includes the exquisite Bonnet which features Charlotte Brontë who makes an ill-fated journey to London to meet her handsome young publisher George Smith.
He does not reciprocate her romantic feelings and Davies describes their awkward encounter with such delicacy, empathy and economy that the reader is almost able to feel Charlotte’s acute embarrassment as their own.
“That is one of my favourites in the collection,” says Davies. “I have always loved the Brontës and I was re-reading their letters when I just had an image of Charlotte getting on a train in Leeds and going to London; this small Northern woman going off into this strange far away place. I didn’t know why she was going at that point or who she was going to see. Then I just started writing. It is really how I write my stories – I don’t know what the story is going to be and they generally end up a very long way from where they started. Perhaps I was particularly intrigued by the relationship with George Smith because in short stories it’s about what’s not on the page. The story came out of those spaces and silences.” (Yvette Huddleston)

Saturday, December 13, 2014

The missing staircase

We open today's newsround with a Brontëana finding. A link with Anne Brontë's stay as a governess in Blake Hall, Mirfield has been found in the US. The Blake Hall staircase which was sold in 1958 to a Long Island couple has been located. The story is in the Yorkshire Evening Post:
A wooden staircase with Brontë connections which was sold when the manor from which it came from demolished, has been tracked down to a house in New York.
Lifelong Brontë enthusiast Immelda Marsden, described by her peers as the ‘Miss Marples of Mirfield’, managed to trace the Queen Anne staircase to a house in Long Island on the other side of the Atlantic.
The find has come at an important time as preparations are being made to mark the bicentennial of the birth of Charlotte Bronte in 1816. A number of events are planned both here and in the US to mark the occasion and now the staircase has been found it is hoped it too could form some part thereof.
Immelda, 68, took up the story: “The staircase was once part of Blake Hall on Church Lane and I can remember going there as a very small child. But the mansion was demolished and today it’s a housing estate. Bits of it were sold to dealers and the staircase went to one in Kensington, London.
“It was sold at auction to a Mr and Mrs Toppings, who had just built themselves a new house on Long Island and were in London looking for things to fill it with. They took the staircase and installed it in their house and there it stayed.”
Indeed, the discovery, which was aided by museum staff in New York, came as a complete surprise to the current owners of the building.
Immelda said: “Anne Brontë was a governess at Blake Hall in 1839, looking after two of the five children of the Ingham family. There was Tom, aged six and Mary-Anne, who was about four or five. The story goes that Tom was a bit of a handful and used to do all sorts of nasty things and Anne Bronte had trouble controlling him. On one occasion, she tied the children to chairs. The family must have found out about this and they dismissed her the same year. She would have worked there for about nine months in all.” (...)
“That house was demolished in 1954 and, although the interior parts were dismantled and auctioned off, their fates were lost in the mists of time. With one exception.
“Due to a short article in the Mirfield Reporter back in the 1960s, the wonderful Queen Anne staircase, hand-carved in burled yew, went to a London dealer. He then sold it to Allen and Gladys Topping, an American couple he met at Kensington Antiques Fair in 1958 and they installed it in their house on Long Island, New York. The story goes that Mrs Topping saw a ghost on the stairs in 1962. Was it Anne? Who knows?”
She went on: “Having checked this much out, our ‘Miss Marples of Mirfield’ made inquiries abroad but things did not look promising. People seemed to think that the house had been lost in one of the many hurricanes that occur so commonly there.
“The breakthrough came when a keen local librarian suggested contacting the Quogue Long Island Historical Society and they tracked down the exact location of the house and contacted the current owner. Much to their joy they discovered that not only was the staircase intact but the current owner was unaware of its origins and delighted to invite them over to see it. (...)
“Now Mirfield and Quogue are working together to document this little-known link between them with a view to incorporating it in the bicentenary celebrations.”
She added: “Sometime in 2016 you will be able to see the fruits of their labours for yourselves. All thanks to crucial evidence in local newspapers and business records unearthed by a killer combination of keen locals and bright librarians on both sides of the pond.”
The ghost story has circulated widely and appears in books and newspapers (where the location of the house known as Sanderling in Beach Lane, Quogue, Long Island, is also mentioned) but, apparently, nobody has looked for the exact location of the house until now.

BBC News echoes the auction of Charlotte Brontë's Fisherman drawing and quotes Ann Dinsdale, collection manager of the Brontë Parsonage Museum, talking about their most recent acquisition:
The drawing of a fisherman sheltering from the rain was drawn by the then 13-year-old Charlotte in 1829.
Brontë, who wrote Jane Eyre, copied the work from a popular guidebook of British birds.
The drawing will be placed on public display in early 2015 and will be available to view in the Parsonage's exhibition in Haworth. (...)
Ann Dinsdale, collections manager at the Brontë Parsonage, said "We're thrilled to be able to bring this drawing home to Haworth to sit with the rest of the collection of the Brontë family.
"This sketch represents the start of Charlotte's creative genius and is a rare insight into one of Britain's great literary minds."
Bloomberg asks Jason Furman, chairman of President Barack Obama’s Council of Economic Advisers, about the best books of the year:
My favorite diversion was Minae Mizumura’s “A True Novel,” a retelling of “Wuthering Heights” set in postwar Japan. It had compelling characters, a unique mode of storytelling and an epic sweep. (Simon Kennedy)
The New York Times talks about the pleasures of reading:
Gayle Forman, the author of numerous books, including “If I Stay,” which was also turned into a film this year, agrees that pressuring kids to read “better books” won’t work. “I’m definitely in the ‘reading is reading is reading’ school,” she said. “I read a lot of terrible stuff when I was young. My dad would take me every week to buy the latest ‘Sweet Dreams’ romance book. Then I read Jackie Collins and Sidney Sheldon. Boy, did I learn a lot! But by the time I was in 11th grade I was reading Kurt Vonnegut, Jane Austen and ‘Jane Eyre.’ ” (Bruce Feiler)
The Guardian talks about the recent Withins Skyline fell running race:
Despite the time of year, the Yorkshire sun is fighting its way through the morning mist and – dare I say it – it’s definitely vest-only weather. No thermal tops or sweat-wicking rain jackets: today is a day for getting muddied up to the knees. And where better to do it than on the bleak moors of Brontë country in a fell race? (...)
As I finish the Withins race, willing myself up the final climb through bog and heather, I can’t help but smile. It may have been be tough, but I’ve had the privilege of a run out to the skyline, a descent along the trails back to Brontë Bridge and a final, sludge’n’ puddle drag to the finish. (Boff Whalley)
Screen Daily reports how the film project The Master based on Julien Janzing's novel Der Maaster has been presented at the Riga Film Festival:
Over 25 of the Riga Meetings participants were also in town with concrete projects which they were able to present to leading international screenwriters and script doctors as part of the European Script Meeting.
The projects being presented include:
* UK producer David P Kelly’s The Master, based on Jolien Janzing’s bestselling new novel about Charlotte Brontë’s secret love in 19th century Brussels. Kelly, who is one of the co-producers of Vera Glagoleva’s Two Women, starring Ralph Fiennes, acquired the film rights to Janzing’s novel after it was presented at the Berlinale Co-Production Market’s Books at Berlinale showcase in February 2013. (Martin Blaney)
LiveMint finds Wuthering Heights echoes in Allahabad:
A giant uprooted tree resting against an abandoned bungalow in Civil Lines presents a poetic sight. It looks like the set for a film adaptation of some moody romantic novel like Wuthering Heights or Rebecca. In fact, the surroundings of one neglected bungalow were the setting for Rudyard Kipling’s famous Jungle Book short story Rikki-Tikki-Tavi. (Mayank Austen Soofi)
Dagens Nyheter mentions the use of pseudonyms by the Brontës; the Portsmouth wind remember this journalist from Haber Turk Emily Brontë's Wuthering Heights; The Bromsgrove Advertiser thinks that it was her Cathy in Wuthering Heights 2001 the inflection point of Kaya Scolerario's career.

Parsonage Christmas and Europe alerts

Several alerts for today, December 13 from all over Europe:

The first one in Haworth itself:
Parsonage Christmas weekend
Festive activites in the Museum
December 13th 2014 11:00am - December 14th 2014 05:00pm

A festive weekend of activities for visitors, including talks and walks, readings of Christmassy passages from classic literature in the rooms of the Parsonage, and drop-in craft activity to create baubles for your Christmas tree.

All activities are free with admission to the Museum and are ‘drop-in’.
Events will vary across the weekend so please telephone for more details if there is something you specifically wish to take part in.
In Italy, the La Sarabanda company is touring their Wuthering Heights adaptation:
Cime Tempestose
Writer Mara Gualandris and Loredana Riva
Director Loredana Riva

December 13  21.00 Teatro Birone di Giussano, Giussano
January 24 21.00 Teatro Oratorio, Lomagna
February 14 21.00  Centro Don Virginio Pedretti, Cesano Maderno
Feburary 28 21.00 Madonna in campagna, Gallarate
April 19 21.00 Teatro Barbarigo, Milano
And in Galmaarden, Belgium:
ATK Kokejane
Woeste Hoogten
Director Bruno Demuynck
Adapted by  Jeroen Olyslaegers
13, 19 and 20 december 2014
20.00 h
Baljuwhuis in Galmaarden

Friday, December 12, 2014

All the juicy bits

The New York Times interviews Anjelica Huston about books:

Who is your favorite novelist of all time? [...]
I’d have to say, for sheer force of beauty, Leo Tolstoy. It’s a while since I read “War and Peace,” but I reread “Anna Karenina” not too long ago, and it is mighty. I must confess I love female writers: Jane Austen, Isak Dinesen, Colette, Willa Cather, Dawn Powell, Joan Didion. I grew up on the Brontë sisters, and Daphne du Maurier. I gravitate to love stories. I love the way Elizabeth Bowen writes, and I’d have to say I take Edith Wharton over Henry James. She’s fruitier. Thomas Mann’s “The Magic Mountain” is a classic. And of course, for sheer language and character, Charles Dickens’s “Great Expectations” ranks very high. I loved Yukio Mishima’s The Sea of Fertility tetralogy: “Spring Snow,” “Runaway Horses,” “The Temple of Dawn” and “The Decay of the Angel.” Gabriel García Márquez’s “One Hundred Years of Solitude” is such a powerful book, and “Love in the Time of Cholera” is so strangely, brilliantly optimistic.
Another Brontëite (well, sort of) is this 17-year-old columnist from The Huffington Post.
The only books that I have read in high school that left me astonished were Wuthering Heights, Crime and Punishment, To Kill a Mockingbird and Les Miserables. I felt that all the others I had to read were simply in the curriculum to fill the specified quotas (i.e. one book on race, another on religion and several from Shakespeare). Basically, these often abstract books just did not interest me, a regular teenager just trying to get through the maze of high school unscathed. (Mackenzie Patel)
Wuthering Heights may appeal to teenagers because, apart from the general sturm und drang of it,
 All the juicy bits in Wuthering Heights are near the beginning. (Charlotte Runcie in The Telegraph)
The New York Daily News book blog Page Views questions Minae Mizumura's view of A True Novel as a retelling of Wuthering Heights,
Firstly, yes, Minae Mizumura’s “A True Novel” has been compared to “Wuthering Heights” and “The Great Gatsby.” But the riveting and languorous tale, first published in Japan 12 years ago, has just as much in common with “Cloud Atlas” (or should I say, seems to have influenced the latter, which came out two years after) and “The Pillow Book,” the 11th-century collection of single lady Sei Shonagon’s often hilarious writings that muse upon romance, annoying one-night stands and court life. [...]
We start with fictional Minae’s preface set near the time the book was published in 2002, then skip to her adolescence as a Japanese expat in Long Island in the ‘60s, and after that fast-forward through her career to the moment she meets a young man who knows someone she once knew.
That “someone” is Taro, and his story is eventually taken back to the beginning— not by him, but by maid Fumiko, who eventually comes to work for Taro after lengthy servitude with the family of his childhood girlfriend, Yoko. Fumiko is the analogue to Nell from “Wuthering Heights,” but that’s as specific to Emily Brontë’s classic as “True Novel” gets, at least in my opinion. Class-crossed lovers, humble protagonist getting rich, wealthy families falling into genteel poverty, an epic comprising several decades, even the Three Crones (here, aged sisters of a nouveau riche postwar Japanese family): these are common tropes. [...]
When “True Novel” winds down, we feel the triumph and agonies of love and personal success as keenly as Taro, Yoko, Fumiko, Minae, Yusuke and the Saegusa sisters, and practically have implanted memories of Japanese small town Karuizawa, so richly described are its seasons, foliage and denizens. Confused now? No worries — it’s a joy to witness everything become clear. (Eydie Cubarrubia)
Jane Eyre is one of The Arbiter's 'reads to match the winter mood'.
Jane Eyre, Charlotte Brontë: For those readers looking to catch up on their classics “Jane Eyre” is definitely a good place to start. Largely considered a revolutionary work of fiction for its use of a female heroine who shares her intense emotions and does not apologize for her sexuality, no one’s literary repertoire is complete without a reading of “Jane Eyre.” (Patty Bowen, Justin Kirkham, and Emily Pehrson)
The Huffington Post rightly claims that.
Inverting the classics is nothing new; while The Last Ringbearer is a well-conceived semi-sequel to Tolkien, Gregory Maguire (Wicked), Jean Rhys (Wide Sargasso Sea), and John Gardner (Grendel) have done this sort of thing much better. Not only do these three novels work brilliantly as free-standing literary works, none of them has, to my knowledge, produced ressentiment-infused subcultures (though Maguire, in providing the inspiration for the shlock anthem "Defying Gravity," is guilty of much worse). (Eliot Borenstein)
The Mirror sums up the latest goings-on on EastEnders:
Anyway, we FINALLY got to meet the Carter’s errant matriarch, Sylvie, who’s been tucked away in Aunt Babe’s spare room like something out of a Brontë novel. (Katy Brent)
But of course life isn't a Brontë novel, as Natasha Bolter well knew. The Daily Mail (of course) and the Evening Standard discuss the text messages sent back and forth between her and Roger Bird.
Are we really so busy now that even our love gets abbreviated? Life is not a Brontë novel, Bolter notes in another message. It certainly doesn’t seem like one reading these. (Rosamund Urwin)
Arte (Italy) features Magdalena Tomala's exhibition Maddy.
Ma è proprio la burrasca che conferisce vigore alle opere e alla visione –artistica e non solo- della Tomala, che ama citare Emily Brontë: “...solo gli inquieti sanno com'è difficile sopravvivere alla tempesta e non poter vivere senza”, dove l’unica ancora di salvezza è costituita dall’ironia e dall’autoironia –ribadita anche dal titolo della mostra- dal ridimensionamento della sofferenza attraverso il gioco, la leggerezza, l’accettazione di eventi che non si possono cambiare, ma trasfigurare ed esorcizzare attraverso un’espressione artistica cinica e sarcastica. (Translation)

Ask the locals - Brontë from gVisions media on Vimeo.
Via the Brontë Parsonage Facebook page, we have found this trailer for Ask the Locals - Brontë, a documentary made by the grandson of Joanne Hutton, the first female curator of the Bronte Parsonage Museum. Newstalk shares an interview with the actors of the Gate Theatre production of Wuthering Heights. Tattoos A shows a tattoo with a Wuthering Heights quote.

Candlelit Parsonage

This evening a the Brontë Parsonage Museum will be a very special one:
Candlelit Tour of the Museum
Christmas at the Parsonage
Friday, December 12 between 7pm and 9pm.

A very special candlelit tour of the Parsonage from Collections Manager Ann Dinsdale.
See the house lit by candles and dressed up with its traditional Christmas decorations.
The evening will include mince pies and mulled wine, and the opportunity to ask all you have ever wanted to know about the Brontës’ Christmas!
Tickets £15 including refreshments. This event has sold out online. Please contact the Museum to find out about any remaining ticket availability. Contact 01535 640188.