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MGM·Lion BS: More on transAtlantic distinctions (200* d) RE: BS: More on transAtlantic distinctions 01 Jun 16

Just read on the Latest Headlines site of a US exhibition of "dollhouses". In UK, we call such a children's plaything a "doll's house", which is also the invariable title of an early Ibsen play. Is it called "The Dollhouse" in the USA?

I was initially puzzled by the title of one of Damon Runyon's Manhattan stories, "The Old Doll's House", which I expected to concern a children's toy, but turned out to be actually about a house in which an old woman lived. A BBC tv continuity announcer I recall experiencing the same misunderstanding, announcing an upcoming version of the story with the emphasis on "doll's" when it should fall on "house".

In Runyon's works, there is no such thing as "a woman" or "a girl"; they are all invariably "dolls", just as his men are always "guys": whence, as will be instantly recognised, the title of a famous musical based on one of his stories, "The Idyll of Miss Sarah Brown", and of a Penguin anthology of them.


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