Book 12: the Prime of Miss Jean Brodie

Book 12 is “The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie” written by Muriel Spark.  It is one those  books I  had on my “to read” list for  years and which finally made it to the “read” list.

  • Miss Jean Brodie is forever in my mind as a youthful Maggie Smith who played her in the movie version.  She is an unforgettable heroine but not exactly in my view a likeable one.  She is a part bohemian, totally unconventional, sometimes flamboyant teacher of young girls who believes that she can change the lives of her”favourites”.
  • I looked at this book through the eyes of a retired teacher.  Miss Brodie ignored the regular curriculum and spoke  whatever thoughts entered her mind that day. She  espoused Fascism to her students and took her favourites away for weekends to her lover’s house.  Not today’s vision of the perfect teacher.
  • Most of the girls got out from under Miss Brodie’s control eventually.  The book, however, shows us how easy it is for a charismatic person to influence others. Miss Brodie undoubtedly had the best intentions but don’t we all when we try to form someone else to our mold.
  • Witty, amusing, not too long.  A good read.

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