November 29th, 2006

writing

Thanksgiving Hymns and Prayers for Protestants

ETA: Thanks for answering so promptly! I haven't decided exactly which one I will be using but I have a better idea of what would be used, if that makes sense. Also, because of the input, I've tweaked the scene a bit to an extended family and friends setting. It would seem the story would work a little better that way.

I am NOT Christian and so my own knowledge of the subject does not help in the least.

I need a Thanksgiving hymn such as might be sung at a gathering by Protestants (most likely Methodists) in a modern church setting such as a potluck feast. I also need a Thanksgiving table prayer for the same circumstances. I did find at least one source: http://www.hymns.me.uk/thanksgiving-hymns.htm but since I'm not Christian, I have no idea which of these would be most "typical" and the story is set in the US so I'm not certain how well any of the songs listed would apply (it's a UK oriented site). Also, I do not want to use "Simple Gifts" because it has been used in another similar scene.

Any help would be appreciated.

Cannibalism

This is a rather interesting yet disturbing topic. What I really want to know is how people become cannibals. Now I know there are a few ways, a common one being its a trait of some form of religion in some remote areas, but I really want to know how someone can psychologically become one. Does one have to experience some sort of horrific event that drives them mad and makes them eat people? Also, what can happen to one's physical appearance? Will they get scurvy? What if they ate mostly humans, or were only mostly given humans to eat, I wonder how grotesque someone would look? Would they also be stronger for eating so much meat all the time?

Thanks for the help! :)

EDIT: Thanks for the info so far everyone! But I think that I should delve into more how the person I want to become a cannibal becomes one in the story. The cannibal character in question at a younger age witnesses his mother killing his father once she discovers that he cheated on her. The mother throws the father's body in the basement. Well, the son is about to run out of the house and pretty much rat on his mother, but she gets to him first. Now she has gone over the edge and is saying things like "How DARE you try to turn your back on me like your father did!" so she throws him into the basement and locks him in there... with his dead father's body. Now this is a very dark and crazy idea... but could someone be driven to insanity by this... and if not fed or given any food for the longest time... and being locked with his dead father's body... and end up, in an odd turn of events... eat his own father's body? And from that moment on be horrifically become cannibalistic?

EDIT 2- ACID FOR CANNIBALS: Again, thanks for the help! If you scroll down and see a large follow-up to a post, you will see that I have a couple more questions and some conclusions to this topic. But a new question I want to ask now is the involvement of acid. Would a cannibal use acid to tear down body parts for easier consumption? Or in a more twisted fate, if the mother was feeding her son people, could she make them consume acid to make them be instantly killed and at the same time be more suitable for eating? And how is acid stored anyway? lol. Special kind of jars?
tj plotting

jewishness & 1940s london

Professional-class, high-school-educated young Christian woman in post-WW2 1940s London is transported to another world, where she immediately meets a scholar wearing a fringed shawl, skullcap, and beard. Does she automatically think 'Jew'? And if so, how would she respond to that conclusion, if at all?

(I've tried to look this up myself, but I'm not getting anything very clear, and I literally only need it for one paragraph - once he starts talking she has other things to worry about.)
Aslan and Narnia

WWII Evacuee Orphans

It really makes me cry that I can't find more on this topic, especially since I love history and my dad's a history major. *cries*

My story takes place during and after WWII. The protagonist is an evacuee child from (the slums of) London who lives in a house in the country. There she goes through some pretty tough times (starved, beaten, and sexually abused). When she goes back home she discovers that her parents are gone and she has to make her way on her own.

My question is: What happened to the children who came back to find their parents dead or gone? I know they were sent to orphanages, but would there be perhaps a period of wandering the streets until being found by some kind person who takes them to one? My character is roughly 15 when the war ends, would she get sent too or would she be too old? Where would she find temporary shelter if she has no home left?

Any answers or input on the info above, please comment. Thanks in advance.
lesen

Surprisingly Sexy Scene in a Novel published before 1973

I am in desperate need of a novel, published in the United Kingdom before 1973, that, while looking perfectly nice and dandy, contains somewhere within its pages a very explicitly steamy, sexy scene, which comes as a huge surprise to a reader who knows only the title and maybe a little of the plot. (The reader in question is a 13-year-old girl who reads everything fictional she gets her hands on, mostly from her parents library).

I tried my knowledge of the classics and drew blank, I looked at the lists of best-selling novels of 1960-1973 and have read only "The French Lieutenant's Woman" which would fit perfectly well if the sex scene hadn't bored me to death, I tried googling "erotic scenes in literature" + variations which drew up nothing but pure porn or fluttering hearts. Please help.
Hard-Working Zone

Late 1890s/early 20th Century Civil Servants, New York State

So, I know that in 1883, the New York Civil Service Act was passed, and the "merit system" and exams and such came into being.

What I'm trying to get a better idea of are the particulars of how the system might work for people in the 1890s through the early 20th century.

Some of the things I'm trying and failing to get more information on:

- Were there any civil service jobs at the time that were actually open to women? If so, what kind of jobs? Telegraph operators? Something else?
- For that matter, what occupations made up the civil service of that time? What could a "self-made" sort of man who was young and very intelligent (and ambitious) but of no particular social background find in the way of work? How comfortable a living was it?
- Were a lot of the jobs in Albany (being the state capital) or New York City (largest city)? I'd really rather work with Albany for the purposes of my story, and I'd really rather NOT work with NYC.
- If said young, ambitious professional civil servant is married with young children, what might occupy his wife's time?
- How much "household help" would it be reasonable for this family to hire, if any at all? I'm kind of using the Betsy-Tacy books for inspiration here and assuming there would be at least a housekeeper, but realizing that a few more servants or none at all might be more reasonable.