The work of the British writer Agatha Christie will be subjected to a
process of "adaptation"
to the sensibility of the time which, like the recent corrections carried out on the books of Roald Dahl or the adventures of James Bond, will consist of the elimination of
references ethnic slurs, insults
and what could be considered offensive language in the texts that collect the mysteries of Inspector
and Miss Marple.
The announcement that the novels of the so-called "mystery lady" are being rewritten to avoid hurting the sensibilities of some of the readers was made by the British newspaper The Telegraph, precisely the same one
released the news that the works of Roald Dahl, author of works such as "Matilda" or "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory" and those of Ian Fleming, author behind the adventures of James Bond,
by their publishers.
In both cases, the changes came after the texts were read by a team of "sensitivity readers," a role played by those charged with suggesting whether a book's portrayal of any group might be offensive or uninclusive
Agatha Christie supervising the archaeological excavations of Chagar Bazar, in present-day Syria (EFE).
Suggestions of a similar nature have now fallen on Christie's texts, which are being rewritten by his publisher,
to adapt them to "modern sensibilities", according to
The objective, according to the newspaper, is to strip them of language or descriptions that "more modern readers might find offensive."
For this, a commission of "sensitive readers"
has been created
that has analyzed the works released after 2020 and those that are going to be published.
, from the works of Christie, who died in 1976, passages and even characters have been removed, such as that of a British tourist who vents her frustration with a group of children who bother her, as well as references to the teeth and physiques
of some people.
The correction was made on the 1937 novel
"Death on the Nile"
, in which Mrs. Allerton's character complains that a group of children are bothering her, and claims that "they come and look, and look, and
their Their eyes are just disgusting
, as are their noses, and
I don't think I like children very much
The reference to noses is considered inappropriate as
offensive to an ethnicity
, so that passage has been removed, reducing it to "I don't think I'm very into boys."
Some words were also changed, and, for example, the term "oriental" was removed and also the term "native", which has been replaced by "local".
The changes occurred with references that may be offensive or uninclusive.
The changes have been authorized by the company
Agatha Christie Limited
, run by the author's great-grandson James Prichard, which manages the rights to her works for literature and film.
It is not the first time that the work of the author of "Murder on the Orient Express" and "Death on the Nile" has been intervened: last year, the editors of the new Spanish edition of the classic known until now as "Diez nigritos" They decided to change the title to
"And no one was left alive"
, trying to avoid any suspicion that could sow doubts about the expiration of the old racial, sexual and class paradigms that wove a civilizational story that is under discussion today.
The classic known until now as "Ten little blacks" changed the title to "And none were left alive."
Regarding the most recent examples of "appropriateness", in the case of the James Bond texts, some references to
have been modified or removed to avoid racist interpretations, as well as other words or descriptions considered shocking.
In Dahl's case, editors included
hundreds of changes to their stories
in language related to weight, mental health, violence or gender, removing words like
"fat" or "ugly."
Dahl's case produced a
, even forcing the publisher in question
to make the supposedly Solomonic announcement that along with the new "revised" versions there will also be reissues without modifications.
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