Beatrix Potter - Overrated?
Boy you just can't unconditionally worship anyone these days, can you? Carroll took weird pictures, Barrie had mother issues, and Beatrix Potter.... ?
Well, with the new movie of her life coming out, The Guardian has wasted very little time in publishing The Ugly Truth About Peter Rabbit. Definitely great reading (though whether you choose to side with it is another matter entirely). It includes such stirring passages, regarding Squirrel Nutkin, as...
Some critics have taken his symbolic castration as Nutkin's punishment for masturbation, but we need not follow them in this. Others - namely the University of Washington's Dr Charles Frey - contend that the squirrel's name suggests not only that he is a little nut, but that we are all like him: he is our nut-kin. Stop tittering at the back.
As for the info that Ms. Potter was less than saintly 24/7, none of this comes as news. If you've dutifully read your The Wand In the Word by Leonard Marcus and perused the Diana Wynne Jones section (page 80, to be exact) you'll know that Ms. Potter one terrorized young Jones's sister back in the day.
Thanks to the Misrule blog for the link.