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When a worldwide plague kills off most of England’s male population, the highly conventional Mr. Gosling and his daughters begin to fulfill “long-thwarted tendencies and desires.” Gosling abandons his family for a life of lechery, leaving his daughterswho have never been permitted to learn self-relianceto loot abandoned shops. Eventually, the Gosling girls find a place in a female-dominated agricultural commune but their new life is threatened by their elders’ prejudices about free love!
|Edition description:||Anniversary Edition|
|Product dimensions:||5.00(w) x 7.50(h) x 0.70(d)|
About the Author
J.D. Beresford (1873–1947) was an English dramatist, journalist, and author. Besides Goslings (1913), his science fiction novels include The Hampdenshire Wonder (1911), about a super-genius child, Revolution (1921), What Dreams May Come… (1941), A Common Enemy (1942), and The Riddle of the Tower (1944, with Esme Wynne-Tyson), about a dystopian, hive-like society. Beresford was persecuted for his pacifism during WWI. His daughter Elisabeth was author of a series of children's books about The Wombles. Astra Taylor is a Canadian-American documentary filmmaker and writer, best known for her 2005 film, Zizek!, about the Slovenian philosopher Slavoj Žižek, and for her 2008 film, Examined Life. She lives in Brooklyn, NY.
Read an Excerpt
The centre and object of the curious crowd which moved slowly down the drive was a landau and pair. The horses were decorated as if for a May-day fete, grotesquely, foolishly decorated with roses, syringa and buttercups made into shapeless bunches and tied to the harness. Three or four women walked at the horses’ heads, leading them with absurdly beflowered ropes.
Round the landau a dozen girls and young women were dancing, chattering, singing, laughing; constantly turning to the occupant of the carriage, for whose benefit the whole performance was being conducted. Some of them had their necks and breasts bare, and all appeared to be frankly shameless. They twisted and danced with clumsy eagerness, threw themselves about, screamed and shrieked, unaware of any observer but the one whose notice they were seeking to attract. They were graceless, civilized savages; Bacchantes who had never known the beauty of unconscious abandonment.
"Men would not marry now that they are so few,” explained Mrs. Isaacson. "I haf heard of this handsome young fellow. He iss a butcher, and he goes every day to kill the sheep and cows, because the women do not like that work. And he iss very strong, and clever also. He teach a few of the women how to cut up the sheep and the cows. And he iss much admired, it iss of course, by all the young women; but he does not marry because he is one man among so many women, and it would not be right that he should love only one, for so there would be so few children and the world would die."
What People are Saying About This
"At once a postapocalyptic adventure, a comedy of manners, and a tract on sexual and social equality,Goslings is by turns funny, horrifying, and politically stirring. Most remarkable of all may be that it has not yet been recognized as a classic." Benjamin Kunkel
"Edwardian catastrophe novel in the mode of H.G. Wells, with ironic description of a devastated world through a lower middle class London family. Good realistic detail." E.F. Bleiler, Science Fiction, the Early Years
"A fantastic commentary upon life." W.L. George, The Bookman (1914)
"Mr. Beresford possesses the rare gift of divination... The picture of that bevy of English Bacchantes graceless civilized savages dragging along a butcher in a triumphal car, cannot be forgotten it is a piece of the most vivid imaginative realism, as well as a challenge to our vaunted civilization." The Living Age (1916)