Saturday, May 12, 2012

Betsy, Tacy, Tib, Mitali, and YOU?

I'm beyond excited to be visiting Mankato, Minnesota this summer to be part of an author panel at the Betsy-Tacy Convention. I remember the wonder of visiting Cavendish, Prince Edward Island, which felt like home thanks to the Montgomery addiction of my youth.

Won't you join us this summer to revel in all things Lovelace? The dates are July 19-21, and here's a brief description from the convention organizers to whet your appetite:
The Convention starts on Thursday, July 19, with events and tours in Minneapolis, the setting of Betsy’s Wedding. We then board Mr. Thumbler’s hack (okay, it’s a bus) to Mankato, also known as Deep Valley in the Betsy-Tacy books, for 2 days of activities, speakers, tours, friendship and fun.
Come on, friends, carpe diem, it's going to be SO MUCH FUN, and makes a great Mother's Day present, too.

7 comments:

Sherry said...

My oldest daughter is hoping to go to the convention, and she wants me to come along. But there are a lot of "ifs" between here and there. So, if I make it, I will be sure to look for you.

Nancy Piccione said...

I am heartbroken I can't attend the convention! But our visited Minnesota last weekend and got to see some of the B-T places in Mankato and Minneapolis. You are going to have a wonderful time!

Debbie Reese said...

Your post caught my eye because I have spent the last few weeks doing an analysis of Scott O'Dell's Island of the Blue Dolphins. When O'Dell showed the manuscript to Maud Hart Lovelace, she urged him to publish it as a children's book. She wrote the bio sketch that appears alongside his acceptance speech in The Horn Book.

O'Dell had very little to go on in creating the worldview of Karana. What he drew from was stereotypes, and, he inserted worldviews of other Indigenous people of California into Karana.

In a generous spirit, we can say that Lovelace and O'Dell and the Newbery Committee didn't know better. But now, we do know better...

I trust your readers recall that Karana's people were killed by Aleuts. In fact, the people of San Nicolas Island (the woman was named Juana Maria by a Catholic priest in Santa Barbara after her rescue) were killed by enslaved Aleuts under the command of a Russian. I'm still doing research on that part, but, I've read a couple of things about Aleuts. In some accounts, they raped women on the island and then killed most of the men. The subtext of that account is rapacious greed. Another account I read is about their enslavement and that they did the bidding of Russians who threatened to kill their wives and children if they did not do as told.

O'Dell's portrayal of the Aleuts is important to all of us. It "worked" for him, Lovelace, and the cmte because of how well the idea of "savage Indians" was (is) part of the American psyche.

I'm wondering what other sorts of biases I would find in Lovelace's books? Maybe there will be a paper on that at the convention. If there is, I'd love to hear about it.

Debbie Reese said...

Oops. Meant to add that CBC Diversity is running a week-long discussion of diversity.

Here's the link:

http://www.cbcdiversity.com/2012/05/its-complicated.html

Debbie Reese said...

After submitting my earlier comments, I went over to Amazon and found Lovelace's EARLY CANDLELIGHT. It was not a children's book, and it came out in the 1930s, before the Betsy Tacy series.

EARLY CANDLELIGHT did pretty well (set in Minnesota, with "squaws" and the like). It is interesting to learn that Lovelace and O'Dell both met with great success when they turned from writing for adults to writing for children. I wonder how the two met? They were about the same age, but he started his books for children in the 1960s (much later than she did).

John said...

I've been to this convention. It was very, very nice indeed. I met some very friendly people right there and we keep in touch even now. odszkodowania Anglia

Tomasz said...

Early candlelight is a really good book. I have also found some other interested books in katalog stron internetowych where you can browse through categories to find book that's interested to you.

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