A Princess of Mars

A Princess of MarsFor the next NetherWords saga, I’ve taken on the exciting task of recording Edgar Rice Burroughs’ A Princess of Mars.

This story was introduced to me by my grandmother, again when I was very young. We took turns reading chapters to each other, getting a kick out of the chivalry John Carter displays, and the long-winded paragraphs of text that Burroughs seemed to be fond of writing.  We would crack up at some of the more absurd moments in the story (such as when John Carter describes his first attempts at walking on the Martian surface).

But we weren’t laughing at Edgar Rice Burroughs; we were laughing next to him!  I’m pretty sure he got in a good chuckle or two whilst writing these words.  John Carter got his own wry sense of humor from somewhere, after all …

One comment

  1. Kevin Ingalls says:

    Hmm…somehow I missed this the first time I was looking for a post that I could comment on about this recording series, so I guess that other comment doessn’t make a lot of sense (oppsie).
    Anyway, throughly enjoying adventures with John and Charlie. It is always interesting to go back to the stories that have been around since before any of us and see how society has changed. Portrayals of Native Americans in stories so “wholesome” as “The Egg and I” or even the “Little House on the Prairie” series come to mind. The opening chapters of “A Princess of Mars” were all the more suspensful because I was wondering what wildly politically incorrect things Burroughs would say about the Apache. Nothing too incendiary, but certainly not what would have been in an adventure story written today.
    Later, John Carter relates to us how little compassion the Martians have compared with himself. At first I thought this was a reflection of the “white man’s burden” idea so pervasive in empiralism of Burroughs’ time: Carter is such a good egg, traveling to Mars to expose the natives to a higher-order human being. I think also though that it is about the audience that Burroughs was aiming at: the eight-year old boy in us that wants to be that superhero who is recognized for his goodness and manners. Mom says I’ve got bad manners, but compared to the Martians, I’m great!
    Of course the whole thing is a tall-tale, and we are meant to be looking up at John Carter with those eight-year-old eyes in enraptured admiration and attention.
    What will happen next? Stay tuned …

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