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Page history last edited by Amanda 10 years, 9 months ago

The original edition is difficult to find in print format any more. If I had to purchase a newer edition, I would recommend either 1988 or 2001, because at least both are upfront about changes being made. 1988 has the advantage of using (mostly) original illustrations by Hugh Lofting (although one has been altered), but 2001 has, with the exception of the Sleeping Beauty passage, fewer changes from the original text.


I would not recommend purchasing 1998 at all. Not only are the illustrations few and poor, the book is not upfront about the changes it has made, implying that it is the original when it is not.


Hugh Lofting seemed to have a premonition that changes to his works were inevitable. In “Childrens' Books; Doctor Dolittle, Innocent Again,” published August 28, 1988, in The New York Times, author Selma G. Lanes stated:


"Writing with uncanny prescience in 1930 about a now forgotten book of his called The Twilight of Magic, he said: ''Perhaps we do not realize that fiction reading for children is not the same in our children's generation as it was in our own. Life cannot stand still. What was black yesterday is white today. What was white yesterday is black tomorrow. We have no excuse for supposing that those books which were given to us as the ideal reading fare for children are the ideal reading fare for the children of today.'''

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