Casuistry: From Ayesha to Ted Cruz

imagesWe all run across words when we’re reading that are familiar enough to accept unconsciously whatever vague idea we have of what they actually mean … and keep on reading without hardly a pause. Now we have digital books and if a word pops up that we are curious about, a couple of quick taps and the dictionary definition is in an adjunct window. If we are still curious (or befuddled), another tap takes us to the internet withe the word in question already discovered in many many websites.

The other day I ran into this passage while reading H. Rider Haggard’s She:

I felt it was hopeless to argue against casuistry of this nature, which, if it were carried to its logical conclusion, would absolutely destroy all morality, as we understand it.

Continue reading “Casuistry: From Ayesha to Ted Cruz”

She Who Must Be Obeyed


Shades of the Penge Bungalow Murders, Pomeroy’s Chateau Thames Embankment, and Rumple of the Old Bailey. But this She came much much earlier, 1887 to be exact. This She-Who-Must-Be-Obeyed is the She of H. Rider Haggard’s adventure novel, She: A History of Adventure. Her name (She’s name?) is actually Ayesha (no, not Tyler).

Perhaps you remember Ursula Andress in the 1965 adaptation of She (Ursula Andress is hard to forget). As it seems to go in films, the Hammer adaptation was not the first filming of She but more like the seventh. Here are a few of the actresses who portrayed the immortal Ayesha:

  • Marguerite Snow
  • Valeska Suratt
  • Betty Blythe
  • Helen Gahagan
  • Ursula Andress
  • Ophélie Winter.

She was even adapted into a Rock Opera.

Continue reading “She Who Must Be Obeyed”