Classic literature

60 Draenei Paladin
290
So, i'm confused by something. I was reading a thread not that long ago regarding tastes in literature, and most people were saying that they did -not- like classic stuff such as The sound and the fury by... whoever wrote the book. I myself had read Mice and Men not that long ago, and i do honestly believe that it was a great story.

The main topic of this particular thread is so: What are your opinions on older books, such as the two i mentioned? Why do you feel this way in particular? Just curious, and i figure this could be a decent thread for this kind of discussion if it doesn't go crazy.
Reply Quote
90 Draenei Paladin
17085
Much of it boils down to stylistic tastes. I like Mice and Men, but can't stand anything by @!%@ens or Bronte.
Reply Quote
85 Human Hunter
8410
yeah that may have been me. i hated the sound and the fury.

its claim to fame however was a lot in its stylization - its heavy use of spelling things out the way a character might say it and not in the queens english of proper grammar.. or so ive heard.

oh yeah.. something faulkner?
Edited by Conqueso on 2/20/2012 4:06 PM PST
Reply Quote
90 Blood Elf Priest
10875
Older books ("classics") are still read because they are either historically significant or because they feature timeless characters, themes, and ideas. If you can learn to appreciate the craftsmanship of these works, you can enjoy any book from "The Scarlet Letter" to "Dracula". The key is becoming aware of the author's goals, noticing his method to accomplish them, and recognizing the subtle layers of detail (be it metaphorical or concrete). In other words, sometimes you just need to stop looking at the "classics" as books... and instead look at them as if they are works of art.
Reply Quote
90 Draenei Paladin
17085
02/20/2012 04:01 PMPosted by Conqueso
oh yeah.. something faulkner?


William Faulkner. And yeah, his writing is pretty painful to read.

02/20/2012 04:10 PMPosted by Hepburn
In other words, sometimes you just need to stop looking at the "classics" as books... and instead look at them as if they are works of art.


Separating books from art is kind of erroneous. You can't really separate the art from the medium, and much of what is considered classics are steeped in idioms and relevancies from the era they're written in. Unless you're studying the era a book was written in specifically, the timeliness of a book is diminished.
Edited by Snozberries on 2/20/2012 4:28 PM PST
Reply Quote
60 Draenei Paladin
290
02/20/2012 04:01 PMPosted by Conqueso
its claim to fame however was a lot in its stylization - its heavy use of spelling things out the way a character might say it and not in the queens english of proper grammar.. or so ive heard


That's regionalism, which is exactly what you described! Basically, it means speaking like a character in a specific area ((Time as well, perhaps.)) would, grammar errors and all.
Reply Quote
84 Worgen Druid
1750
Since you mention William Faulkner, the thing that really turns me off of his writing is his narrative style. Stream of consciousness is tedious to me, and hard to get through.
Reply Quote
86 Draenei Death Knight
4890
Faulkner is considered one of the great U.S. authors (though I agree that the sound & the fury is not an easy read).

I'm mixed on classics. Not to sound like a pretentious !@#$, but some of my favorite novels have been english translations of Russian greats: crime & punishment, fathers and sons, and dr. zhivago.

highly recommend all three.
Reply Quote
A lot of authors are considered "great" but not usually when they are alive.

Funny how we put people on a pedestal after they have passed.



Reply Quote
90 Human Warlock
8250
Interesting thread you've got going here.

I enjoy most of the classics with little exception - I will confess that I wasn't too fond of "The Sound of Fury" either though.

What I prefer doing these days is to reading books that are deemed classic literature in various other countries and cultures outside my own (granted they have translation of course.)

I really enjoyed "No longer Human," for a magnitude of reasons. Even the author is quite a intriguing person to read about as well (some suggest that the book was based on the story of his life.)

His book has been also made into a short manga, anime and live action movie back in 2009 , and is the most recent movie rendition. However, I wasn't able to find a translated copy of it anywhere :( - it looks really good too. Thankfully you can still pick up a copy of the book on amazon for about 7 bucks.
Reply Quote
85 Goblin Warlock
6190
Interesting The Sound and the Fury is getting all of the hate here. It is without a doubt my favorite book ever : /

It isn't an easy read, and if that puts you off then I guess I understand that, but it doesn't make it a bad book. Just dense and some people aren't willing to work through it. I, for one, enjoy challenging reads, as long as it isn't overboard like Finnegans Wake where there is just no hope of making sense of it.

Superfluous and challenging are very different as well. Wordy books that fill pages with boring nonsense like Moby-Dick or The Count of Monte Cristo, or anything by Charles D ickens are classics that I don't understand why they are classics. The Sound and the Fury rarely has this problem, as almost every page has content that means something.

If you want to really hate a book, read Moby-Dick, or Paradise Lost, or Pilgrim's Progress. Or try Finnegans Wake and then lets talk about confusing books lol. There isn't an understood plot in that book.
Edited by Capslock on 4/1/2012 6:16 PM PDT
Reply Quote
85 Gnome Mage
8080
04/01/2012 06:15 PMPosted by Capslock
f you want to really hate a book, read Moby-Dick,


I wouldn't go as for as to say I hate this book, more so a strong dislike. Which is funny because its start was so promising. I had to read it, it's considered to be a great piece of American Literature, but I honestly don't see how. I refuse to give it away/sell it though. It sits nicely on my classic shelf. Who knows perhaps one day I'll pick it up again, someday when I'm much much older and wiser, and maybe just maybe the mystery of it's success will finally be reveled.
Reply Quote
85 Night Elf Rogue
OOB
14375
My all time favorite book is: Pride and Prejudice.

So I guess I'm not one of those.
Reply Quote
90 Gnome Rogue
14945
04/01/2012 06:15 PMPosted by Capslock
If you want to really hate a book, read Moby-Dick, or Paradise Lost


I liked Paradise Lost quite a bit. I guess it could be considered wordy, but I don't think it's that bad. Reminds me a lot of LoTR. Never read Moby Dick so can't comment on that 8)

My favorite classics are the collections of shorter stories like The Canterbury Tales, and The Metamorphoses by Ovid.
Reply Quote
36 Undead Rogue
190
I liked Of Mice and Men just fine. The reason I espouse hate for classic novels in general is because it's nearly impossible for me to extract any sort of meaning from the endless drone of words. Dickens, Bronte, Austen and Wilde are particularly bad offenders in this regard.

Mind you, I can't read modern wordy books either, so it's a question of style and not publication date.
Edited by Leyan on 4/4/2012 2:51 AM PDT
Reply Quote
85 Goblin Warlock
6190
I liked Of Mice and Men just fine. The reason I espouse hate for classic novels in general is because it's nearly impossible for me to extract any sort of meaning from the endless drone of words. Dickens, Bronte, Austen and Wilde are particularly bad offenders in this regard.

Mind you, I can't read modern wordy books either, so it's a question of style and not publication date.


Not all classics are wordy. In fact a lot of the ones I have read aren't, they are just dense and complicated.

And don't bother picking up Moby-Dick again lol. Those 600 pages of pointless crap about the history of whales isn't going to be any better at any point in your life. Its success is a mystery to me too. Literally every single person I have ever met that has a respectable literary opinion has said they hated Moby-Dick as well.
Edited by Capslock on 4/4/2012 8:20 PM PDT
Reply Quote
85 Gnome Mage
8080
And don't bother picking up Moby-Dick again lol. Those 600 pages of pointless crap about the history of whales isn't going to be any better at any point in your life. Its success is a mystery to me too. Literally every single person I have ever met that has a respectable literary opinion has said they hated Moby-Dick as well.
You sir maybe correct, the book will probably just sit and look pretty in my collection. Like the saying goes (who's saying that is, I haven't a clue), life is too short to read a bad book.
Reply Quote
32 Blood Elf Rogue
2340
02/20/2012 04:57 PMPosted by Keronaur
its claim to fame however was a lot in its stylization - its heavy use of spelling things out the way a character might say it and not in the queens english of proper grammar.. or so ive heard


That's regionalism, which is exactly what you described! Basically, it means speaking like a character in a specific area ((Time as well, perhaps.)) would, grammar errors and all.


Or it's also called verisimilitude
Reply Quote
85 Night Elf Death Knight
1935
We had to read Of Mice and Men in English class my junior year. I rather enjoyed it, along with The Scarlet Letter. Hated Ethan Frome, not too big on The Great Gatsby. I wasn't required to read it in school, but Wuthering Heights enrages me.
Reply Quote
90 Gnome Warlock
11055
Agreed, Wuthering Heights was awful. I couldn't get through it. I'm not a big fan of most Victorian literature, with very few exceptions (Doyle and Poe were great)

I enjoy a great deal of classic literature. Dracula, Paradise Lost, Count of Monte Cristo, Canterbury Tales...all great stuff.

Others...not so much. Moby Dick is a great example...and I just can't get into Dickens.
Reply Quote

Please report any Code of Conduct violations, including:

Threats of violence. We take these seriously and will alert the proper authorities.

Posts containing personal information about other players. This includes physical addresses, e-mail addresses, phone numbers, and inappropriate photos and/or videos.

Harassing or discriminatory language. This will not be tolerated.

Forums Code of Conduct

Report Post # written by

Reason
Explain (256 characters max)
Submit Cancel

Reported!

[Close]