Follow Friday is hosted by Alison Can Read and Parajunkee! I love this week's question:
Back to School: Create a reading list for the imaginary English Lit class you'll be teaching this semester.
I have actually thought about this soo much since I started University last year! I feel like I should pick a theme, because otherwise I might just pick all the books I've ever read. Maybe I'd try to do something along the line of male-female relationships through the ages, maybe? Ignore my failure at proper chronology!
- Look at parts of The Iliad, the entire fact that they start and entire war over a woman. Is she described as property, an object of desire, or is she actually above them, placed on a pedestal
- Maybe Euripides' Medea. Medea is an amazing character, also walking that fine line between monster and warrior, as observed by men.
- Look at Beowulf, how Grendel's Mother is a warrior as well, but translations by men present her as a monster. I wrote an essay on this last year and got a good grade, I could totally teach this (probably not).
- Maybe Shakespeare's The Taming of the Shrew, compare it to his The Merry Wives of Windsor. In the first, the woman is tamed and in the second a proud man is put in his place by housewives.
- I couldn't teach anything without my Pride & Prejudice. Austen has an interesting view on women and the restraint between men and women would be quite interesting to look at, I think.
- Ian McEwan's On Chesil Beach is an amazing novel, relatively short as well which is perfect, and the relationship between the two main characters, especially concerning sexuality, is really interesting and different from all the other books.
I'm quite at a loss concerning more books, so I'm just gonna leave it here and probably lie awake tonight thinking of Essay questions I could set!
For Book Beginnings (Rose City Reader) and Friday 56 (Freda's Voice) I am using 'The Sun Also Rises' by Ernest Hemingway, which I want to start reading soon!
'Robert Cohn was once middleweight boxing champion of Princeton. Do not think that I am very much impressed by that as a boxing title, but it meant a lot to Cohn. He cared nothing for boxing, in fact he disliked it, but he learned it painfully and thoroughly to counteract the feeling of inferiority and shyness he had felt on being treated as a Jew at Princeton. There was a certain inner comfort in knowing he could knock down anybody who was snooty to him, although, being very shy and a thoroughly nice boy, he never fought except in the gym.'
I know I chose a long bit, but this beginning just tells you so much about the character. In a few lines, you really get an understanding of Robert Cohn and this is more character exploration than I've seen in entire novels!
'When I woke in the morning I went to the window and looked out. It had cleared and there were no clouds on the mountains. Outside under the window were some carts and an old diligence, the wood of the roof cracked and split by the weather. It must have been left from the days before the motor-buses. A goat hopped up on one of the carts and then to the roof of the diligence. He jerked his head at the other goats below and when I waved at him he bounded down.'
Yup, Hemingway can do landscape description as well. And I do love goats, so I thought this might be a nice quote to use.
Book Blogger Hop is hosted by Ramblings of a Coffee Addicted Writer and this week's qst is:
If you don't like a book that you said you'd review, do you graciously turn it down and explain why or do you struggle through it and hopefully come up with a half decent review?
It has only happened to me once that I reviewed a book I really didn't like, so I wrote a review that reflected how I felt about it, as politely as possible. I was consequently kicked out of the blog tour, which was taught me that I should contact authors if I don't like the book. But I am quite selective when it comes to accepting review requests so I don't end up with many books I don't like.
If there are aspects of a book I don't like, I still feel obliged to talk about it. I am reviewing the book and the authors know I am being truthful, not vindictive. But usually my reviews focus on what I liked about the book, so if there is anything negative it is usually only a couple of lines, max.
So, what course would you construct? And how do you deal with review requests you dislike?