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Old 03-26-2017, 04:02 PM   #31
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I got the feeling throughout that his 'love' for Olga was more appreciation than love, and the definite feeling that he was predominately gay, if perhaps unacknowledged (and certainly not out!) Given the era, hardly surprising.
I would say infatuation and given the era, that may have been what passed for love (if not true love).
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Old 03-26-2017, 06:04 PM   #32
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I got the feeling throughout that his 'love' for Olga was more appreciation than love, and the definite feeling that he was predominately gay, if perhaps unacknowledged (and certainly not out!) Given the era, hardly surprising.
That's my interpretation of the situation. Georgie is clearly gay, and also infatuated with Olga in an "out of reach, on a pedestal" kind of way. Presumably a way of Benson alluding to his own experiences without being too explicit.
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Old 03-26-2017, 08:13 PM   #33
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I supposed he was what was once known as a latent homosexual. Not actively sexual and it's obvious that he loves Olga and Lucia but gets panicky at any hint of a more intimate relationship.
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Old 03-26-2017, 09:12 PM   #34
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Lucia was generally painted as the most agressive and retaliatory of the bunch, and Olga one of the more conciliatory, but Olga showed herself to be a master of of the invective whenever she wanted.

Quote:
Then she looked at my pearls, and asked if they were genuine. So I looked at her teeth, and there was no need to ask about them."
And then there's this masterpiece, which, if you were raised Southern Baptist as I was, you can't help but consider this a reproof of Biblical porportions.

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"Never till the day of judgment," she said, "when Lady Ambermere gnashes her beautiful teeth for ever and ever, will I set foot in that house again.
What a great insult! I must add it to my arsenal.
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Old 03-27-2017, 01:20 AM   #35
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Has anyone been inspired by Lucia's giving of Shakespearean names to the rooms of her house to do anything similar?

I'm typing this from the Curly Howard bedroom.
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Old 03-27-2017, 04:50 AM   #36
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Has anyone been inspired by Lucia's giving of Shakespearean names to the rooms of her house to do anything similar?

I'm typing this from the Curly Howard bedroom.
Ah, yes, that highly accurate gender marker, "the Stooges: like or dislike?" I suspect the missus has a different name for it or her own bedroom.
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Old 03-27-2017, 06:46 AM   #37
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Has anyone been inspired by Lucia's giving of Shakespearean names to the rooms of her house to do anything similar?

I'm typing this from the Curly Howard bedroom.
You should rename your bedroom to the Spanky Bedroom.
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Old 03-27-2017, 09:47 AM   #38
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Has anyone been inspired by Lucia's giving of Shakespearean names to the rooms of her house to do anything similar?

I'm typing this from the Curly Howard bedroom.
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Old 03-29-2017, 01:20 PM   #39
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At least one of the book's other characters seems to have picked up on Georgie's gender-bending characteristics: Colonel Boacher. "Surely a fine woman, though lame, wouldn't look at a needle-woman—well, leave it at that."
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Old 03-29-2017, 08:34 PM   #40
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The gay characters are certainly another thing that made this book feel so fresh to me despite its age, and also that made it seem a bit more carefree fantasy to me than the second book Miss Mapp, in which town Tilling there are no obvious gay characters. Not that gay characters are fantasy, but in that time they were certainly much more risqué and less usual for the average reader.

Of course some may see them as bisexual or even straight given that Benson wasn't explicit there and that is each reader's prerogative, but in my eyes Georgie and his sisters are almost undoubtedly gay. Georgie was also very likely 'straight' according to society as since he wasn't 'out' the thing to do then (as now, really) was to officially presume everyone was straight even if the gossip or hunches said otherwise, and so being 'straight' he found a good friend to 'fall in love' with. It was merely friendly infatuation egged on by his desire to have a girl to 'be in love' with. Really, given that no innuendo was made, that I can think of offhand, to Georgie or his sisters finding anyone sexually attractive and their lack of intimate relationships, I suppose it's more correct to think of them as asexual, but if we're being intellectually honest it seems obvious to me Benson wrote them as sort of gay stereotypes/send-ups (as most characters in the book are send-ups of this or that).
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Old 03-29-2017, 10:24 PM   #41
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At least one of the book's other characters seems to have picked up on Georgie's gender-bending characteristics: Colonel Boacher. "Surely a fine woman, though lame, wouldn't look at a needle-woman—well, leave it at that."
Male needlework seems to have been not unknown in the upper crust then - Boy Dougdale embroidering in Love In A Cold Climate - but definitely not approved by the Col Blimps
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Old 03-30-2017, 01:36 AM   #42
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The gay characters are certainly another thing that made this book feel so fresh to me despite its age, and also that made it seem a bit more carefree fantasy to me than the second book Miss Mapp, in which town Tilling there are no obvious gay characters.
You are overlooking "quaint" Irene Coles in Tilling.
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Old 03-30-2017, 08:37 AM   #43
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I shall revisit this series. It had its moments, and made for a good discussion.
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Old 03-30-2017, 03:07 PM   #44
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You are overlooking "quaint" Irene Coles in Tilling.
Am I? Maybe. I suppose I didn't notice her well enough to include (listening to an audiobook while doing other things may lead one to sometimes miss out on certain nuances). Was she portrayed as obviously gay as the siblings in Riseholme?
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Old 03-30-2017, 06:03 PM   #45
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Am I? Maybe. I suppose I didn't notice her well enough to include (listening to an audiobook while doing other things may lead one to sometimes miss out on certain nuances). Was she portrayed as obviously gay as the siblings in Riseholme?
Even more so than Georgie's sisters.
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