This is a tribute to a writer who brightened my childhood, who fed my imagination and who supplied me with the raw material for endless daydreams – Enid Blyton. Of late, her stories have come under criticism for containing racial and gender stereotyping and there has been much talk about ‘cleaning’ them up. The very thought of that appalls me! To touch-up those masterpieces of children’s fiction, to my mind, borders on sacrilege!
How well I remember the sheer joy of reading the adventures of The Famous Five or The Secret Seven, the lives of those who lived int he Enchanted Wood and the Magic Faraway tree. The description of high tea and picnics made my mouth water and I wish I had a rupee for all the times I wished I could lay my hands on a lovely, cool glass of ginger beer. And the school stories were simply magnificent too…Malory Towers, St. Clares, the Naughtiest Girl series…It was another world entirely, a world I desperately wished I was part of. I still remember begging my parents to send me off to a residential school, tempted as I was by thoughts of midnight feasts and hilarious pranks played on unsuspecting French teachers.
Blyton wrote in a different world, a world where race relations were tenser and where only the girls cleared up after dinner. Altering her stories would rob them of any historical value that they have. Her stories are not just stories…they’re an account of her life and times. They’re a monument in themselves and altering them in any way would be like painting the Taj Mahal blue. [ok..not quite like that..but you get the picture ;-)]
An apology to all those who actually read this blog. I’ve been really busy of late..work, new hobbies, catching up with friends. One of my latest obsessions, and the main reason why I was not blogging, is this fantastic place called Deviant Art. Do visit it if you can..there’s a link on this page to the DA homepage as well as to my DA page. As proof that I was really busy, I have put up a sample of my work. [I’m showing off, of course!]