If you had to pick five...?

Seumas

Seumas

Member
I agree. Starting from the title, Dan Butler's Unsinkable is almost unreadable. Very boring, quite a few errors and nothing new.

Stanley Lord was a strict disciplinarian, perhaps even bit of a martinet but certainly not a sociopath. His problem was that he had the sort of personality that made him not very likeable, including his own crew.
I think we all we've all of us met one or two people like Stanley Lord in our lives ! Maybe "that" teacher at school whom one simply did not mess with or an elderly relative who held some forthright views on the world and the young folk in particular !

From what I gather (happy to be corrected) after he was forced to resign from Leyland, he was unemployed for only a short while and received a higher salary at new employers Lawther-Latta than he did at Leyland. He seems to have captained ships for them without any controversy until his retirement.
 
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Kathy S

Kathy S

Member
It's been pointed out before that Mr Butler's "diagnosis" of Stanley Lord as a sociopath was extremely flawed.
I personally beg to differ. Butler did the best he could to analyze someone more than 100 years after the fact. He was careful to include several caveats, including that he is not a psychiatric professional. Many authors have attempted post hoc diagnoses that were much more poorly done. Albert Goldman's contention that John Lennon had dissociative identity order comes to mind.
 
Arun Vajpey

Arun Vajpey

Member
I think we all we've all of us met one or two people like Stanley Lord in our lives ! Maybe "that" teacher at school whom one simply did not mess with or an elderly relative who held some forthright views on the world and the young folk in particular !
Exactly! Although I grew-up under a different culture from yours, I feel the same.

The Dean of the Medical College that I joined was definitely a martinet and an unreasonable one at that. His overbearing "no-nonsense" attitude caused him to get into confrontational situations often. Fortunately, he was forced to resign after widespread student and even some staff protests in my second year. He would have been the archtypical old school Captain of a ship.

Stanley Lord was probably over-conscious of the gulf between himself, his officers and rest of the crew in terms of social class but that does not mean that he was another Captain Bligh. If he really had been a sociopath, he would not have made an Able Seaman, let alone Captain of a ship.

Butler did the best he could to analyze someone more than 100 years after the fact
No he didn't. Butler neither had the knowledge not training to label someone as a sociopath. All he did was to bandy a few big words and phrases together and present a pseudo-analytical image of someone who was already the vitcim of at least some unfair accusations. A classic case of kicking a man who was already down.

I fully agree that Captain Lord and his crew could have done better that night if only to avoid repercussions later (since they really could not have made much difference). But it should stop there. Books like Strangers in the Horizon and Titanic and the Indifferent Stranger have tried to be fair in analyzing the Titanic and Californian situation and are highly recommended.
 
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M.A.S.

M.A.S.

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I picked my five favorite Titanic authors so far (listed chronologically); they've touched my heart the most. :) I'm currently reading Ghosts of the Titanic by Julie Lawson, so undecided on that one yet...

1. Nearer my God to Thee: Story of the Wreck of the Titanic -- The Ocean's Greatest Disaster (Marshall Everett, 1912) -- my grandpa's book.
2. S.O.S. Titanic (Eve Bunting, 1996) -- my writing professor's favorite book which got me started reading a bunch more!
3. A Titanic Hero -- Thomas Byles (Cady Crosby, 2012) -- a gift from my mom, because I wrote a poem about him after reading the 1st on this list.
4. Can You Survive the Titanic? : an Interactive Survival Adventure (Allison Lassieur, 2012) -- I hope I would have survived and helped others, too.
5. Ranger in Time: Disaster on the Titanic, (Kate Messner, 2019) -- I want to gift this one to my cousin and her kids, because they had a dog like that, and I think they're enjoy reading about a Lassie type of hero dog on the Titanic.
 
M.A.S.

M.A.S.

3rd class
Member
p.s. I stayed up all night to finish Ghosts of the Titanic by Julie Lawson (not to be confused with Ghosts of the Titanic by Charles Pellegrino). It's sort of a back-to-the-future plot, in which the main character helps a spirit find rest knowing that her baby was adopted by a lady on the lifeboat. All of the supporting characters are likewise made up, but some of the other real Titanic figures are involved. As imaginary as it is, the adoptive mother who saw the "boy on the lifeboat" (who went back in time there) made an insightful comment:

"The boy on the lifeboat who told me that Michael's mother's name was Annie might have been mistaken. I might have been mistaken about the boy. None of the other passengers mentioned him. Could they all have forgotten? There was evidence of such confusion during the Senate inquiry, where witnesses made conflicting statements. I understand how it can happen. The mind confuses the details. We forget some things and remember others. Our dreams and imaginings are mistaken for the truth."
 
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