Thursday, September 4, 2008

Classics Meme

1. My favorite classic is:
Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice with a close second being Elizabeth Gaskell's Wives and Daughters. 

2. The classic I had the toughest time finishing is:
This is a hard question because there haven't been any classics that I've had difficulty finishing in recent months/years. The one that does come to mind is Oliver Twist by Charles Dickens, which I tried to read in high school and never finished. I hated Dickens. I've since changed my mind and I plan to take on this book sometime in the future, but first I'm tackling Bleak House.

3. I would someone who doesn't read a lot of classics or who doesn't generally like classics because:
I would have to say one of Jane Austen's novels (maybe Pride and Prejudice or Sense and Sensibility or Persuasion) because her works are so accessible now, including very well made movie adaptations. For someone who doesn't like classics watching a movie version first is always a great way to grasp the story before plunging in to read the book. The first time I read Austen was when I was 16. I struggled to understand the writing, but after I watched the movie suddenly it was as easy as any other novel I had read. Of course audio books are useful too and some readers may find this an easier means to taking on a classic. And if the reader finds that they enjoy Austen they may find they are open to reading other classics. I think most people who say they don't like classics do so because they find them boring or think they will be boring, but if they find just the right book they might be surprised.

4. To me, a classic book is a book that:
Has proven itself through time -- not only by being still in print, but by being understood and enjoyed years later. I tend to think of classics as books prior to the 20th century, although other books like Gone With the Wind and To Kill A Mockingbird, both written in the early-mid 20th century are also books I consider "classics" so I guess my definition is a little broader than I thought. Revised then... Classics are books written pre-1950. In another 10 years or so I suppose we could move that date up a little.

5. The type of relationship I have with classics is:
I love them. I am learning to appreciate and understand them. I hope to broaden my mind (ie. learning/education), imagination, and vocabulary by reading classics.

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