Dead Cats and Spunk Water: Strange Logic in the Writing of Mark Twain

Presented by Dolores Hydock, actress, speaker and storyteller

Many of the characters in Mark Twain’s stories—Huck Finn, Tom Sawyer, the pauper who suddenly finds himself a prince, even Adam in the Garden of Eden—lived in worlds they didn’t understand and were powerless to control. These characters—and sometimes Samuel Clemens himself—often used superstitions and other creative logic to try to explain the otherwise unexplainable occurrences in their lives. The program will include the “wart cure” episode from Tom Sawyer, an excerpt from “The Diary of Adam and Eve,” and the story “How the Chimneysweep Got the Ear of the Emperor,” which shows how Samuel Clemens’ “magical thinking” was, at times, visionary—he anticipated our 21st-century fascination with “social networking” by over 100 years. Despite his insight into human nature, his obvious intelligence and the cynical eye with which he viewed the world, Clemens was often the victim of magical thinking in his own life, imagining that various business schemes were going to help him “get rich quick.” The program includes a discussion of Samuel Clemens’ use of strange logic in his own life.

A microphone / access to sound system may be needed, depending on the size of the group.

Contact Dolores Hydock to book this presentation
(205) 951-7757