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LILLIAN HELLMAN
The Children's Hour


click to enlarge

Four Square, London, 1962
(price: 2/6; 128 pages)

first published in England by Hamish Hamilton in 1937

dedication: For D Hammett with thanks


The blurb on the back:

A fine moving play examining the tragedy which follows the slanderous rumour of a Lesbian relationship between two school-mistresses. The malicious story spread by a neurotic girl leads to a lawsuit, the destruction of the school, and to the death of one of the women.


opening lines:
A room in the Wright-Dobie School for Girls, a converted farm-house eighteen miles from the town of Lancet.


Dated? Well, of course itís dated. I mean, Iím sure that a teacher in an American girlsí school would still get in trouble if she were outed as a lesbian, but I have my doubts that the story would result in quite such an overblown melodrama as this.

Donít get me wrong, I like the film Ė itís got Audrey Hepburn and Shirley MacLaine, after all Ė but the play-script on the page is hardly scintillating. Probably for historical interest only.

When did you last fuck your teacher?


ARTISTIC MERIT: 3/5
ENTERTAINMENT VALUE:
2/5
HIPNESS QUOTIENT:
3/5


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