By Simon Goldhill
So starts A Very Queer relatives Indeed, which introduces us to the intense Benson kin. Edward White Benson grew to become Archbishop of Canterbury on the top of Queen Victoria’s reign, whereas his spouse, Mary, was once popular for her wit and charm—the leading minister as soon as puzzled even if she used to be “the cleverest girl in England or in Europe.” The couple’s six precocious teenagers incorporated E. F. Benson, celebrated author of the Mapp and Lucia novels, and Margaret Benson, the 1st released lady Egyptologist.
What pursuits Simon Goldhill so much, even if, is what went on behind the curtain, which was once much more strange than a person may well think. Inveterate writers, the Benson kin spun out novels, essays, and millions of letters that open wonderful new perspectives—including what it might probably suggest for an grownup to kiss and suggest marriage to a twelve-year-old lady, how faith in a family members might aid or damage relationships, or how the loss of life of a kid should be celebrated. No different relations has left such unique documents approximately their so much intimate moments, and in those extraordinary money owed, we see how family members existence and a family’s realizing of itself took form in the course of a time whilst psychoanalysis, clinical and old demanding situations to faith, and new methods of considering society have been constructing. this is often the tale of the Bensons, however it can be greater than that—it is the tale of the way society transitioned from the excessive Victorian interval into modernity.
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Additional info for A Very Queer Family Indeed: Sex, Religion, and the Bensons in Victorian Britain
A Very Queer Family Indeed: Sex, Religion, and the Bensons in Victorian Britain by Simon Goldhill