Sunday, May 19, 2019

Pamela Weaponized

The stress of the trip gave me a huge relapse vis-a-vis ongoing lung ailment and precipitated a visit to a doctor who gave me some serious medications. But I was very set on seeing Martin Crimp's Pamela adaptation When We Have Sufficiently Tortured Each Other so that I could write about it, and it was highly worthwhile in the end - my piece has just gone live at The Rambling.

A teaser:
My Pamela, when I teach or write about Richardson’s novel, is the Pamela of resistance. I don’t care whether or not my students read much (any?) of the dreadful parts that follow Pamela’s acceptance of Mr. B’s marriage proposal. I refuse to foreground the fact that Pamela voluntarily marries her would-be rapist, or that the main work (the deluded and delusory work!) of the rest of the novel is retrospectively to redeem all that was violent, coercive, troubling in the relationship between the two. Before that, in the first few hundred pages, Richardson has brilliantly conveyed the moment-by-moment consciousness of a young woman under constant threat from the sexual predator who employs her.

No comments:

Post a Comment