Saturday, October 15, 2005

Lacking Style -- or at least some of its Elements

Althouse has an interesting post (and thread of comments) about the new Elements of Style and this article regarding it.

I'm with them ... and leaving the reviser's name off the title suggests that the editors are intentionally trying to pull a fast one. Perhaps next they'll silently revise other books by dead authors, such as...

Hamlet (now with 25% more ghosts!)
Tale of Two Cities (removing all that ambiguity in the opening)
Paradise Lost (with a new ending, in which Adam and Eve go after Satan with AK-47s)
Pride and Prejudice (car chase thrown in for dramatic effect)
Moby Dick (the whale is revised from boring white to black with red racing stripes)
The Scarlet Letter (in which the "A" is quietly changed to a Harry Potter lighting scar)
The Bible (all that stuff about Moses and Jesus removed -- they didn't test well with the focus groups)
Wheelock's Latin (all gendered inflections omitted)
Robinson Crusoe (given a "Survivor" twist, in which Friday gets voted off the island)
Lord of the Ring (Hobbits replaced by Bratz dolls, with hip new illustrations)
Everyman (the sexist title changed to "Everyindividualregardlessofgenderincludingthetransgendered")
The Book of the City of Ladies (abridged to "The Pamphlet of the City of Ladies")


  1. I like that new Paradise Lost ending. AK-47s beat Satanic cannons any day.

    Jeffery Hodges

    * * *

  2. Your Wheelock and Everyman reimaginings make me giggle.

    The sad thing is, I'd probably read all of those "new and improved" books! Especially the new P&P; the thought of Mr. Darcy in an exciting car chase makes me melt! *LOL*