Christiane's Reviews > The Voyages of Doctor Dolittle

The Voyages of Doctor Dolittle by Hugh Lofting
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Aug 22, 09

bookshelves: childrens-fiction, children-s-classics
Read in August, 2009

Fantastical adventures of young Tommy Stubbins, the amazing Doctor Dolittle, and a menagerie of talking animals. In many ways ahead of its time (1922) in terms of animal rights (the Doctor is firmly against lions and tigers in zoos, bullfighting, and scooping up fish to live in an aquarium) the book does have uncomfortable moments when Lofting is writing about human beings rather than animals. Most versions of "The Story of Doctor Dolittle" (which I haven't read yet) and the "Voyages" have been edited and re-written. If the books are no longer considered suitable for children that's fine, but to sanitize a Newbery winning book so it better suits the more enlightened values of a later time seems wrong to me. For all it's flaws, this is what Lofting wrote. Read it with your kids and discuss how much things have changed since the 1920s.
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