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Angela Carter's Wise Children

The narrator of Angela CarterÆs Wise Children (1993) Dora Chance is one-half of a pair of twins, two vaudeville dancers and singers known as the Lucky Chances. Dora and Nora Chance are the illegitimate daughters of BritainÆs most distinguished stage actors, Sir Melchior Hazard. The mother of the girls died in childbirth and they were raised by ôGrandmaö Chance, their landlady. CarterÆs book is filled with humor, poignancy, magical realism and a sense of ôseizing the dayö as the main refuge against mortality. Dora Chance narrates the novel that is a recollection of career of the Lucky Chances and an account of their celebrated acting family, both on the legitimate and illegitimate side. These themes and elements of the novel are illustrated in the opening section of the book, our introduction to Dora and her sister on the morning of their 75th birthday. This section of the book demonstrates the humor and resolve that have enabled the Chance sisters to retain their joy of living despite numerous challenges.

The birth of the Chance sisters immediately provided them with one major advantage and one major disadvantage. The major advantage of their birth is having BritainÆs icon of the stage, Melchior Hazard, as their father. This provides them with the genetic gifts of natural talent and the requisite physical endowments to succeed as entertainers. Dora tells us as much when she comments on her condition and that of her septuagenarian sister, ôOur cheekbones stick out more than they used to, too, but theyÆre the very best cheekbones, IÆd have you knowùthese cheekbones are descended from some of the most profitable calcium deposits in the world. Like all those who spend much time before the public eye, our father has always been dependent on good bone structureàSome superannuated hoofers put on the avoirdupois like nobodyÆs business,ö (Carter 1993, 6). This passage also reveals another theme in the book, the way ...

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Angela Carter's Wise Children. (1969, December 31). In Retrieved 01:13, May 31, 2020, from