Among the school teachers of today there does indeed appear to be a lamentable lack of consistency towards literature. Yesterday being World Book Day, pupils were encouraged to attend their classes dressed as characters from books. This morning I hear the news that some pitiable young man had been shunned by his school for appearing as the lead character from a popular work of fiction entitled Fifty Shades of Gray, on the grounds that the book was unsuitable reading for schoolchildren.
I wonder, therefore, what reasoning led to similar treatment being heaped upon my great grandson, Essay den Sushing IV, who attended school in the guise of Monsignor Auban du Fornette, the disputatious Jesuit sophisticate who famously appears towards the end of the particularly humourous tenth of Pascal's Provincial Letters to argue that 'sufficient grace' could indeed be insufficient. In tears he told me how he had entered the classroom aglow with happiness, expecting applause and encouragement for his exemplary choice of childhood reading matter, only to be met with blank looks from his teacher. They can't have it both ways.