Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Editd (for Edited)

You can have a lot of fun with photos. The one pictured here shows a street sign in San Francisco, edited (though not cropped) in such a way as to now read "Edit" rather than Edith. Another "Edith" made famous through photos was the eponymous doll in the series of children's books by Dare Wright, published from 1957 through 1981. Dare Wright was an author, photographer, and fashion model, born in Ontario, Canada, in 1914. In her "Edith" books, she dared to dispense with the need to write (for the most part) and let her photos do the talking instead. This was a rather innovative technique, it would seeem, especially in the world of children's lit. Edith in many ways appeared to represent the author herself: both were pretty girls with straight blonde hair, wide-set eyes, gold earrings, and rosebud lips. Dare was a sort of "lonely doll" as well. Her parents divorced when she was young and she spent most of her childhood in Cleveland, Ohio, with her mother, the portrait artist Edith Stevenson Wright. She and her brother Blaine (who had himself been raised by their father, a theater critic) did not meet again until Dare moved to New York City in her twenties. In 2010, The Guardian named The Lonely Doll one of the "10 Best Illustrated Children's Books" of all time. Today's typo was found 41 times in OhioLINK and 249 times in WorldCat.

(Picture by P. I. King.)

Carol Reid

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