….I’d love to know your thoughts on the ethics of (blog) publishing Hattie’s diary – that is to say, the diary of a 20 yr old woman in the Victorian era, an era which contrasts sharply from our current one in its value of discretion and modesty? I haven’t included her last name in the posts, and 150 years have passed since the diary’s writing…which makes ME feel better about publishing someone’s diary in a blog without their consent. But it’s always a question in the back of my mind.
What would Hattie think if she knew, for instance, that on a recent day, readers on four continents had read from her diary?? I am not going to stop or interrupt the postings, but I think the question is worth exploring. Also, I have a breakup letter from John to Hattie, in which he states explicitly that she should destroy the letter after reading it so that no one else would read it. His explicit statement has kept me from publishing the letter (which was written in 1865, the year before this diary of Hattie’s)….which is unfair, perhaps, as the same intention is implicit in Hattie’s diary, DIARY being synonymous with PRIVATE.
If you’re so inclined, a thoughtful discussion on the matter can be found at “the ethics of posthumous publishing:” http://mirandacelestehale.net/2011/10/13/the-ethics-of-posthumous-publishing/
If you feel like weighing in on this, please do. I’m interested to hear what you think.