Finished the Wilder podcast today. It is a documentary that runs for 10 episodes, plus the introductory episode. Author Glynnis MacNicol looks at Wilder's life and the Little House series through a 21st century lens, exploring...
- if the books stand the test of time,
- if they should still be read to children,
- if the flaws in Laura's narrative, like the derogatory depictions of Blacks and American Indians and the way in which Rose crafted her political messages into the Little House series, means they should be removed from bookshelves, and
- if those who grew up reading the Little House series feel the same after reading the books as adults.
Other topics that Wilder covers are how much Rose' contributed to her mother's books, the Little House on the Prairie television series starring Michael Landon, and how Laura's books created an entire business empire that flourishes even today. Along the way, the author visited numerous historical sites and held interviews with several people, including Little House on the Prairie's Melissa Gilbert and Caroline Fraser, author of Prairie Fires.
I also caught up this week with the Wilder on the Prairie podcast. Author Annie Kontor brings listeners back to the Little House books, each show covering one chapter in the book series. The September 11th episode covered chapter 11 from On the Banks of Plum Creek.
This show is all about Annie's thoughts and research that tie into Laura's books. Show notes will often include photos, links to articles, videos, or recipes. Other than mentioning from time to time when offensive content might appear in a chapter, Annie focuses more on the times in which the books are set, what daily life was like, and other interesting tidbits.
If you enjoy reviewing history through a more enlightened point of view, Wilder would be a good choice. If you're looking to learn more about Laura's life and times in which she lived, Wilder on the Prairie would be a good choice. Those performing research for school papers might also find Wilder on the Prairie helpful.