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Rebecca - Daphne Du Maurier

Rebecca was a character much loved by my sister, she even named her daughter in her favour but I was surprised to discover through the U3A book group that I had never actually read the book nor I think had I seen the film. I was enthralled throughout.

I would imagine that if written today it would be quite a hard book to get published. Three years ago Olivia Laing, in the Guardian, was already staggering towards the current identity politics viewpoint. Brilliant article well worth reading but in the end I think I disagree.

Du Maurier I am sure intends that the reader should be aware of the moral questions raised by the new Mrs de Winter's complicity in murder but I am equally convinced that she did view Rebecca as at least misandrist, possibly misanthropic (she even betrays the loyalty and trust of Mrs Danvers in the end) and demonstrably evil.

Neither the torture of animals nor the provocation to murder served any purpose other than to gratify Rebecca's hatred of the other. If I were to follow Liang's line of thinking I would have to suspect that it is De Maurier's projection of her own insecurities on those possessed of Rebecca's aplomb.

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