Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Guess what?

You know sometimes you find random bits of information that really excite you, but no-one else cares about? Like the fact that Arthur Ransome was married to Trotsky's secretary - and then you have to find someone who cares about left-wing politics and read Swallows and Amazons as a child so they can be excited about this fact with you.*

One of the advantages of having a blog is that you can pretend that people who share your interests exist just by posting.

So it is with great joy that I share with my many, fascinated, readers my new knowledge about Dobby. The first House Elf to demand wages is named after Dobby Walker a communist, unionist and radical lawyer. JK Rowling chose the name because Dobby Walker was the person who invited Jessica Mitford and her husband Bob Treuhaft to join the communist party. I'm not sure that Dobby would have been particularly pleased by the comparison - Dobby the person ran a tight union ship - and Dobby the house-elf bargains down wages 10 galleons a week to one galleon a week.

Isn't that exciting?

* Although finding a radical subtext in his books would be pretty impossible from memory.

1 comment:

  1. Anonymous10:45 am

    I loved both those lefty linkages, Maia, and I especially love finding others connected to our own country. Eg Len de Caux, born in Westport and later a key figure in the US labour left in the 1930s and 40s, author of 'Living Spirit of the Wobblies' and his autobiography 'Labor Radical', happened to be on holiday in Turin in the summer of 1920. There was a strike raging in the auto industry there, and de Caux followed the daily reports in the anarchist newspaper Nuovo Ordino, written by its star correspondent Antonio Gramsci. How wonderful, therefore, that de Caux went on to become the very model of 'organic intellectual' which Gramsci typologised in his Prison Notebooks.