“Little Women.”

Yes. Louisa May Alcott.

Is there any reason on this green earth why I should waste any more minutes of the few decades I have remaining (assuming all kinds of good fortune) on this drivel? Jo is almost interesting, but I doubt she moves out west and starts up a major snuff habit to go with her wrangling calves and stomping rattlesnakes. I have no desire to do anything but to stamp out the short, flat lives of the rest of the characters. “Ooh, the crabby old guy lost a granddaughter with blue eyes.”


Make your case.

8 thoughts on ““Little Women.”

  1. “I have no desire to do anything but to stamp out the short, flat lives of the rest of the characters. ”

    Well, if it makes you feel any better, at least one of those lives is decidedly shorter than the others…

  2. Are Tiny Tim’s crutches standing in the corner? (I read a Christmas Carol every year. It does some pretty heavy-handed moralizing, but at least there are ghosts.)

    I have abandoned it, in favor of Sherlock Holmes.

  3. Louisa May Alcott’s father was one of the great liberal educators of his day. His methods were very unorthodox and forward thinking. You might find her family background very interesting and their philosophy permeates the book.
    Besides, it’s a lovely and well constructed American version of a Jane Austen novel. I loved it when I was a kid.
    YMMV but it’s probably worth more respect than most modern Americans give it.

  4. The Alcotts were part of the American Transcendentalist movement. Bronson Alcott was quite radical in his day, insisting that girls and black children be allowed to attend his schools — which is why they never lasted very long. (One of those schools was a few blocks from my old apartment, and Louisa was born there.) They even lived on a commune once.

    Their friends and neighbors in Concord, Mass. included Ralph Waldo Emerson, Nathaniel Hawthorne and Henry David Thoreau. Louisa’s mother Abigail was an abolitionist and suffragette.

    Louisa worked as a Civil War nurse before she returned home to write sappy novels to support her family, because her father was so bad at it. She supported her entire family until her death. Before her death, she became the first woman to cast a vote in Concord.

    I remember reading (in her book “Eight Cousins”) the radical idea that girls should be dressed to run freely, to get exercise and have adventures. Very radical!

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