Monday, 13 January 2014

Adolf in Blunderland


Adolf in Blunderland: a political parody of Lewis Carroll's famous story by James Dyrenforth and Max Kester

This book. Oh my! It is something that I discovered on our wonderful blog "Treasures from the Basement" and I am so pleased to have stumbled upon it. Auckland Libraries is one of only two libraries that hold this book in New Zealand (the other being Dunedin public library). I have searched online for a copy to purchase but have only been able to find second hand (as it is out of print) copies, with the lowest price being around $60 ! I have seen copies going for more than $100 too - this book is hot property !

It is hilarious and very, very pointed. It is a radio script from a BBC play that was broadcast in October 1939, but the hard copy version of it includes some extra parts that were deemed to be inappropriate by the BBC for airing. It is also a rather disturbing read in light of what occurred in the years following, the devastation of which no one could have predicted

The story follows Alice's adventures, as Adolf encounters the same characters she did, with some slight differences.

Some of my favourites are the Mad Hatter becoming the Mad Flatterer; the Doormouse is the Doormat - representative of the German population(!); the Mock Turtle is Mock Gurbles; the Caterpillar is Neville Chamberlain, allowing Adolf to take his choice of bites out of the mushroom cap in order to make him big again, with the cap resembling a map of the world.

Adolf in Blunderland is a great laugh but it is also chilling to think of the destruction to quickly come, one which the authors could certainly not have predicted.

If you are an Alice fan, or a political cartoon fan, or a history buff, or just enjoy a laugh, you must read this!

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