Jenny Woolf points us to a nice letter-to-the-editor in June 2010’s Smithsonian, in response to her April article about “Lewis Carroll’s Shifting Reputation.”
Curiouser and Curiouser
As an attorney, I think “Unusual Suspect,” by Jenny Woolf, did a good job of documenting the modern-day habit of judging or casting spurious allegations based on hearsay and innuendoes. I agree that the photographs taken by Charles Dodgson, a.k.a. Lewis Carroll, were in vogue in the Victorian society of his day and did not condemn him. All the “suspicions” about his behavior arose several decades after his demise, coming from pseudo-scholars looking to make a name or a quick profit. Dodgson, unfortunately, cannot defend himself, and to smear his reputation in such a manner is unpardonable.
Says Woolf, “I’m pleased an attorney thinks I give a balanced view.” Her Dodgson biography “The Mystery of Lewis Carroll” was released in 2010 and is reviewed in Knight Letter Number 84.
One thought on “California Lawyer calls Pseudo-Scholars’ Posthumous Perversion Accusations ‘Unpardonable’; Woolf ‘Pleased’”
The problem with labelling them ‘pseudo-scholars’ is it misses the only thing that makes this a valid discussion – it isn’t pseudo-scholars making these assumptions, it’s mainstream scholars. Morton Cohen, highly regarded by you all, is clear he thinks Carroll was a pedophile and his photography was an expression of that. As do Thomas, Bakewell, Lennon, et al. It seems weirdly schizophrenic to admire and quote these authors yet refuse to engage with a central part of their thesis. Come on now – repeat ‘Cohen thinks Dodgson was a pedophile’ until it finally sinks in, then abandon the comfy pretense that only fake scholars go there 😉
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