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aybala50's picture

 OK, I've put some real thought into this and though it sounds nice to read more modern texts, I don't think I'm finished with the old quite yet. I know it might sound bizarre, but I've, for the most part, really enjoyed the books I read in high school. I like the suggestions of reading the Scarlet Letter, Moby Dick (not because Anne likes it, but because it is such an important book and I've never read it), maybe Charles Dickens, or Georgette Heyer! I want to read actual books, nothing online and I want to read great novels from the past. Can someone be on my side?




TPB1988's picture

I am on your side!

I completely agree with you aybala50. I love the classics and whenever we read them it becomes easier to understand why things are the way they are now. It is really fun to go back to the building blocks and see how it began. I personally LOVE LOVE LOVE the Scarlet Letter and I also have not read Moby Dick. Like rachelr I MUST read at least ONE book. I just don't see how it is possible to have a class one literary kinds without at least one novel.

nk0825's picture

Taking a Step Back

 I think that a bridge can be built between reading books and reading other literary kinds. While I believe it is important to read a book, I think it is just as important to understand the other mediums out there. All too often I think we forget that things other than novels exist, and I wonder if that is because much of our education to this date has been based on BOOKS. Has our education possibly shafted us as students, making us more narrow minded than we need to be because of its dependency on one literary form?

rmeyers's picture

regency and mystery

I would definitely support the reading of some Charles Dickens (for the same reason you would support Moby Dick, important and unread) and I just did some quick research into Georgette Heyer, who seems very intriguing. Along those same lines (if a slightly different era) are the mysteries of Dorothy L. Sayers, a mid-20th-century author who went to an all-women's college at Oxford (her novel Gaudy Night brings up some interesting parallels to Bryn Mawr/most women's colleges). Now that I think about it, a look into classical mysteries or those written by women would be very interesting... (This may not have been the support you were looking for, but I completely agree that steering away from so much online reading would be nice for this next quarter.)

mkarol's picture

women !

I'm definitely in support of focusing on female writers. I think it could be interesting to see how different restrictions and social standards may have (or not!) influenced the 'genre' of women's novels (+short stories, essays, movies?).

sgb90's picture

 I have a similar reaction.

 I have a similar reaction. I'm taking an English class, mostly, well, because I love to read books, especially novels. I came into the class with the (not unreasonable?) expectation that we would be reading actual novels. I really loved studying blogs, but now that I have spent six weeks largely reading from a computer screen, I think I am ready to take a look back at print. I want to delve into challenging, dense works; I would be more than happy to read classics or non-classics depending on the preferences of the class. I will admit that I am not very interested in graphic novels or science fiction, as I feel these appeal to a limited audience.

Shayna S's picture


 Not to be entirely antagonistic, but the same thing about limited audience can be said about classics and every genre. Personally, I feel this class is trying to break away from the typical classics course. Even if we are to read older texts, I would like to at least approach them in a different manner than if this was Comparative Literature 101. 

rmeyers's picture

re: yet...

I agree completely with your comment about limited audiences. The genre of romance novels is as limiting as the supposed 'classics' as is science fiction. Hopefully our class can come to a compromise, or look at ways to view a few of these genres with connecting themes (like historical changes, changing platforms, or something else).

rmeyers's picture

to add...

Sorry, I would also like to add that all of these limiting genres can also be freeing --no matter what I am reading, I can find as much to think deeply about with science fiction as I can with the Scarlet Letter. As long as our class approaches these settings/genres openly, and with the knowledge that it is possible to learn/have 'deep' discussions about many topics, we should be able to engage in a fruitful class.

rachelr's picture


 My comment is basically just that I MUST read at least ONE book in this class. An actually book, not an online book or anything. It is essential. So yes, I agree, books!

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