Jemmy Button

Subercaseaux, Benjamin

Published by Macmillan, 1954
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Bibliographic Details


Title: Jemmy Button

Publisher: Macmillan

Publication Date: 1954

Binding: hardcover

Description:

New York. 1954. Macmillan. 1st American Printing. Very Good In Slightly Worn Dustjacket With Some Chips & Tears. Translated from the Spanish by Mary & Fred Del Villar. 382 pages. hardcover. Jacket painting by John O'Hara Cosgrave II. keywords: Literature Caribbean Translated Chile Latin America. inventory # 12432. FROM THE PUBLISHER - A great adventure story. vivid, fascinating, different! Here is a thrilling sea story and a vivid portrayal of the dash of savagery with civilization. Its scenes range from Buckingham Palace to Tierra del Fuego; its characters include such diverse persons as Jemmy Button, a young Fuegian native, and Charles Darwin, tile famous anthropologist. It is based on Captain Fitz-Roy’s Diary and Darwin’s Voyage of the Beagle. But tile author has used the historical story only as a starting point for a fascinating fictional adventure. Robert Fitz-Roy, captain of the H. M. S. Beagle, had the virtues and faults necessary to be both loved and hated. Having explored the sea and unknown lands around Cape Horn during the l830’s, he was drawn to and fascinated by the untutored savages of Tierra del Fuego. Convinced that these natives could be civilized, lie takes four back to England and tries patiently and lovingly to educate them in a Christian manner. The Fuegians, lost in their new environment, cannot understand the morals and ethics of civilization. Boat Memory, the most warm-hearted and sensitive of tile four, is very shortly killed by one of civilization’s diseases. Jemmy Button, Fitz-Roy’s favorite, is jealous of his affection for the other natives. He plots and plans to gain his love exclusively and when he finally runs away, his escapades prove embarrassing and costly. On his return lie slowly uses new and more terrifying tactics. Fuegia whom Fitz-Roy sees as a defenseless and innocent young woman turns into a fury, and sins with a devastating indifference. York Minster, a sensuous, handsome youth, proves impossible to control. It is not long before Fitz-Roy looks upon these lusty, primitive children as diabolical creatures that lie can no longer save and never tame. To him it seemed that to ‘civilize’ often meant to awaken malice in tile heart. So, on a second voyage, with young Darwin a fellow passenger, lie returns these savages to their native land, leaving with them an English missionary who all along has seen the futility of uprooting a man from his native environment. When Fitz-Roy reaches his goal, lie realizes that tile wake of civilization in Tierra del Fuego is to be even more disastrous. For tile natives with the white man’s influence still keenly at work, revert to savagery and corruption even more violent than before. Benjamin Subercaseaux, author of Chile: An. Extravaganza, is one of Chile’s best known writers. Born in Santiago, a member of a distinguished family of French descent, he lived for some years in Paris where he wrote and published several books in French. As a very young man he planned to be a doctor, and studied medicine at the University of Chile for three years. Later, however, he began to concentrate on psychology, and it was in this field that he received a Ph.D. from the University of Paris. He now devotes most of his time to writing. (original title: Jemmy Button). Very Good In Slightly Worn Dustjacket With Some Chips & Tears. Bookseller Inventory # 12432

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