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 Post subject: Precedent for the Chalet School - by EJO!
PostPosted: 15 May 2018, 05:16 
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I've been ransacking this website for about half an hour, looking for where to post about this - and I expect after all there'll be a whole thread dedicated to it that I've missed! (I've looked all through the Special Sixth section.)
I yesterday stumbled across a book on the internet by Elsie J. Oxenham which reads hugely like the inspiration for the Chalet School. (This must be a known thing, I think? I found it following a Chalet School book link.) It's The Two Form Captains, published 1921, and is set around two boarding schools in the Swiss Alps.
Quote:
St John’s College for boys, and St Mary’s School for girls, separated only by the wide grey torrent which came rushing and. fighting its way out from beneath the glacier just behind, were an unusual venture, but quite a family concern.

Not just the schools, but higher up there's a TB sanatorium on:
Quote:
the Platz, high, healthy- famous for the wonderful strength of its air, its unusual amount of daily sunshine, its health- giving, life-producing qualities. To the Platz came visitors from all over Europe, some to go away cured in a short time, others to live for years in that marvellous climate though they must have died in one winter at home.

There's also much healthy walking, and admiring of the scenery, and multilingualism, and girls from various European countries, though the school itself is declaredly "run on English lines".
There are significant differences; the great doctor who runs the sanatorium, Sir Rennie Browne, is no relation to the brother-and-sister "family concern", and the set-up is different in that there are two schools, and some of the pupils board not in the school, but in family-style boarding houses in the village, and a good half of the students have family members in the sanitarium. Even so, it feels really like the inspiration for the Chalet School.

The writing's interesting and quite different from what I've read of the Abbey series. At least, the writing of boys talking sounds much livelier than any males do in the Abbey books, and there's a genuinely well-considered cricket match. There's reference to country-dancing, but in a very subdued, background way (unless the book ends with a big Abbey-style dance - I haven't finished it yet).

Comments?


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 Post subject: Re: Precedent for the Chalet School - by EJO!
PostPosted: 15 May 2018, 07:36 
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It's part of a series known as the EJO Swiss series. The Troubles of Tazy, which is one of them, is my favourite EJO book :D . Abbeybufo will know more about this than I do, but there've certainly been suggestions that EJO felt that EBD had ... been inspired by her books is probably the polite way of putting it :D . There are plenty of British children's/young adult books set in the Alps, but there aren't that many which involve schools.

I really like the Swiss books. There are only a few of them, so they don't draw me in in the way that the Chalet School books do, but I do prefer them to the Abbey books. Tazy, who's one of the main characters, does turn up in quite a few later Abbey books, and I'm always sorry that her friend Karen, my favourite EJO character, doesn't turn up with her.

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 Post subject: Re: Precedent for the Chalet School - by EJO!
PostPosted: 15 May 2018, 09:20 
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Several of us die-hard 'Abbey' fans actually prefer the Swiss and Sussex sets to the Abbey series!

The various Wikipedia Articles on EJO and her books - which were largely written by me - explain the connections. If you click the EJO link above, there are further links on the page to the various books and series.

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 Post subject: Re: Precedent for the Chalet School - by EJO!
PostPosted: 15 May 2018, 10:40 
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Declaring the Chalet School to be best
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Another story that EBD "copies" from EJO is the dying mother whose children don't see her one last time - EBD's Balbini twins, and one in EJO's Swiss books, a girl who can't be found because she is off somewhere with a boy.

I suspect some of EBD's "borrowings" were subconscious, some have been mentioned elsethread recently, there's sheets and pillowcases party from Mrs Vaizey, Judgement day in La Rochelle series from L M Montgomery Story Girl (or maybe Golden Road)

However her biggest plagiarism is in School by the river - Daisy Travilla and family are lifted, names and all, from the Elsie books, which we know EBD had read.

(I'm another EJO fan who prefers Swiss/Sussex book!)


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 Post subject: Re: Precedent for the Chalet School - by EJO!
PostPosted: 15 May 2018, 12:13 
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ivohenry wrote:
I suspect some of EBD's "borrowings" were subconscious, some have been mentioned elsethread recently, there's sheets and pillowcases party from Mrs Vaizey, Judgement day in La Rochelle series from L M Montgomery Story Girl (or maybe Golden Road)
I think there's possibly more owed to Mrs Vaizey than to anyone - there's more than the sheets and pillowcases party. Tom and Some Other Girls must be one of the most 'borrowed from, though: boyish girl called Tom; toboggan accident; girls who likes to wear her long hair floating loose and also becomes feverish as a result of overworking; summer pageant...


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 Post subject: Re: Precedent for the Chalet School - by EJO!
PostPosted: 15 May 2018, 14:55 
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Quote:
...her friend Karen, my favourite EJO character...
Yes, she's a great character. I like that she's wearing really non-glamorous glasses (I picture something like opticians use to measure the degree of short-sightedness - really clunky, eye-obscuring things) - so many sympathetic heroines are astonishingly lovely. Of course she does have the mysterious now-you-see-it-now-you-don't ravishingly reddish hair, but over all, she's unlovely, or at least not eye-catchingly lovely, but really aware and courageous and self-contained and totally admirable.
Quote:
The various Wikipedia Articles on EJO and her books - which were largely written by me - explain the connections.
Thank you! I've been, and read, and am a bit stunned at how much there is to know about it all! Thank you for putting it all - the fruits of your research - out there for general public benefit!
Quote:
Another story that EBD "copies" from EJO is the dying mother whose children don't see her one last time
Yes! That's in The Two Form Captains, close to the end. I hadn't read it when I posted earlier, but I have now. Unless it's something that turns up in multiple sources - for instance I could imagine it in Charlotte Yonge - I think that would have to be called a direct steal.

(Where, when posting, do I put "X person wrote", so that it comes up as part of the quote?)


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 Post subject: Re: Precedent for the Chalet School - by EJO!
PostPosted: 15 May 2018, 15:11 
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Housemate wrote:
(Where, when posting, do I put "X person wrote", so that it comes up as part of the quote?)


If you click the quote button on a post [which is what I've just done], a new post comes up with [ quote = "Name" ] (without the spaces, and with whoever has just posted between teh inverted commas. You can then strip out the words you don't want to use, which I also did. If then you want to quote someone else, and copy/paste what they've said and highlight it, and then click the Quote button in the line at the top of your panel, it will enclose the bit you've highlighted with [ quote ] and [ /quote ] (again without the spaces; I have to type it that way or you wouldn't see what's between the square brackets, it would just do what it's been told!)

So if you go to the first set of square brackets and add ="Name" between the word quote and the closing bracket ] you will find it comes out saying Name wrote ... You can always check with the preview button that it has worked before clicking submit - and it's a lot easier to do it on a desktop or laptop than a phone or iPad! You also need to make sure that the square next to 'Disable BBCode' underneath the panel for typing in isn't ticked, or it won't work at all - but as you posted the non-named quotes without a problem, that should be OK.

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to be nobody but yourself - in a world which is doing its best, night and day, to make you everybody else - means to fight the hardest battle which any human being can fight; and never stop fighting.
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http://stitchwords.blogspot.co.uk


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 Post subject: Re: Precedent for the Chalet School - by EJO!
PostPosted: 15 May 2018, 15:47 
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Declaring the Chalet School to be best
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Noreen wrote:
ivohenry wrote:
I suspect some of EBD's "borrowings" were subconscious, some have been mentioned elsethread recently, there's sheets and pillowcases party from Mrs Vaizey, Judgement day in La Rochelle series from L M Montgomery Story Girl (or maybe Golden Road)
I think there's possibly more owed to Mrs Vaizey than to anyone - there's more than the sheets and pillowcases party. Tom and Some Other Girls must be one of the most 'borrowed from, though: boyish girl called Tom; toboggan accident; girls who likes to wear her long hair floating loose and also becomes feverish as a result of overworking; summer pageant...
whik

EBD even chose to call herself Patricia Mariquita at one stage in her life - which is Mrs G de V's Peggy Saville's name


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 Post subject: Re: Precedent for the Chalet School - by EJO!
PostPosted: 15 May 2018, 16:07 
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Just for info - Tom and some other girls is free on Kindle.


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 Post subject: Re: Precedent for the Chalet School - by EJO!
PostPosted: 15 May 2018, 17:06 
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And is available to read free via Project Gutenberg if you don't have Kindle: here.


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 Post subject: Re: Precedent for the Chalet School - by EJO!
PostPosted: 21 May 2018, 15:40 
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Noreen wrote:
And is available to read free via Project Gutenberg if you don't have Kindle: here.

Many thanks for this link! It has led me into a very excited gallop through not only Tom and some other girls but several more by Mrs Vaizey. Very enjoyable - I liked Tom herself very much, and wish there was a lot more about her. (I am not pleased about the ending!)
I loved the glimpses of interesting language use, such as the reiterated use of "Brother, where art thou?" to indicate the scarcity of raisins in a pudding, and I found the sheets and pillowcases party! There were perceptible other links to EBD, as well, I thought - for instance a rich American girl called Cornelia who refuses to conform to English social conventions, and calls her father Poppar. (Not a schoolgirl, though - this one's of marriageable age.)

Also, thank you, abbeybufo, for the tip about how to quote with the name attached - which you can see I lost no time to learn from and apply!


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 Post subject: Re: Precedent for the Chalet School - by EJO!
PostPosted: 21 May 2018, 16:13 
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It was a pleasure, Housemate - glad you enjoyed it all (and I do know what you mean about galloping through)!


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 Post subject: Re: Precedent for the Chalet School - by EJO!
PostPosted: 24 May 2018, 16:21 
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Housemate wrote:
Also, thank you, abbeybufo, for the tip about how to quote with the name attached - which you can see I lost no time to learn from and apply!


Glad to help! - sorry not to respond before ... I've been in France for a week! :D :D

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to be nobody but yourself - in a world which is doing its best, night and day, to make you everybody else - means to fight the hardest battle which any human being can fight; and never stop fighting.
e.e.cummings
http://stitchwords.blogspot.co.uk


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