I’m a sucker for survivalist stories (like “Adrift“), and I’m also a sucker for happy family stories (like “Little House on the Prairie”). So how I’ve gone nearly 40 years of existence (that’s 3,000 in bunny years) not having read “The Swiss Family Robinson” is quite simply beyond me. The warlord bequeathed his unread copy upon my oldest daughter on her 8th grade graduation. Unread, because I don’t think anyone in her class bothers to read anything (except my daughter, who is a prolific reader).
I’m a hundred or so pages into the tale, and I must say this is a very un-PC piece of literature. So un-PC that I’m surprised it ever made it onto a schoolroom shelf (but then again, we are talking about the warlord here). Mr. and Mrs. Robinson give their kids wine to drink, make them tote guns, make them pray, and, they refer to indigenous people as “savages” and black people as “negroes.” They also let their two guard dogs attack whatever, whenever, eventually fashioning spiked collars for them, to protect their necks while they’re busy mauling local wildlife. If I may quote Mrs. Robinson:
“As I looked at my two young sons, each with his gun, and considered how much the safety of the party depended on these little fellows, I felt grateful to you, dear husband, for having acquainted them in childhood with the use of firearms.”
I dunno… sounds to me like Mrs. Robinson is bitterly clinging to her guns and religion.