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The Literary Society

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    (Original post by _becca)
    I've just started reading GE, have a FIT copy of it from like 1900 (anyone else think books are more enjoyable to read if they're physically worn? You know what I mean hehe), love it! Dickens' humour is so under-appreciated, in GE it's a kind of self-deprecating humour isn't it.

    Also in the middle of Moll Flanders, highly recommend you read it, I found it hilarious!! Easier to read than I thought as well, considering the period it's from.
    Definitely Mine is a modern copy but has been on holiday - and bears the scars! A few years ago, this would have really bothered me. A level English has cured me of that.
    I love Dickens' forward thinking and characterisation - Miss. Havisham is so memorable!

    Will give Moll Flanders a go in the summer Thanks for the recommendation. Have you read Guilliver's Travels? It was written in the 18th Century (I think) and is pretty funny
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    The Frogs!
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    (Original post by Obsidian)
    Definitely Mine is a modern copy but has been on holiday - and bears the scars! A few years ago, this would have really bothered me. A level English has cured me of that.
    I love Dickens' forward thinking and characterisation - Miss. Havisham is so memorable!

    Will give Moll Flanders a go in the summer Thanks for the recommendation. Have you read Guilliver's Travels? It was written in the 18th Century (I think) and is pretty funny
    Gulliver's Travels is one of the 37247947984729 books sitting on my desk glaring at me to read them, i hope to read it over summer!! I will be so glad to say goodbye to A Level English, the AOs are so stifling. I was told to remove half the references from my coursework because they were 'too academic'

    ... which for suuuch a vocational course as English would be disastrous *rolls eyes*

    (Original post by philistine)
    The Frogs!
    Aristophanes? LOVE that play, the Clouds is also excellent you wouldn't think you'd be able to laugh at something that old but evidently people never change :')
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    (Original post by _becca)
    Aristophanes? LOVE that play, the Clouds is also excellent you wouldn't think you'd be able to laugh at something that old but evidently people never change :')
    The very same! Oddly enough, I always remember that particular line from the Major-General's song in the G&S opera, The Mikado:

    I know the croaking chorus from The Frogs of Aristophanes!
    Unlike the other lines, it's apparently so: just croaking...

    EDIT: Have you read The Wasps?
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    (Original post by philistine)
    The very same! Oddly enough, I always remember that particular line from the Major-General's song in the G&S opera, The Mikado:



    Unlike the other lines, it's apparently so: just croaking...

    EDIT: Have you read The Wasps?

    Hahahah #croak
    Yes I have read The Wasps, though a long time ago! Would like to read again really.A lot of the political references etc are completely lost on me though :confused:

    So, you like AG comedy, what about the tragedies? QUICK, Euripides, Sophocles or Aeschylus? (have to admit 'The Frogs' actually changed my answer to this question hehe)
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    (Original post by _becca)
    Gulliver's Travels is one of the 37247947984729 books sitting on my desk glaring at me to read them, i hope to read it over summer!! I will be so glad to say goodbye to A Level English, the AOs are so stifling. I was told to remove half the references from my coursework because they were 'too academic'

    ... which for suuuch a vocational course as English would be disastrous *rolls eyes*
    Make sure that you read it :cool:
    I'm looking forward to English at Uni - where have you firmed? Agree about the AOs, it can feel so superficial at times. I want to be able to take unusual ideas about texts and explain myself. AOs don't give you that sense of discovery! Ah well, not long left now.

    I have enjoyed A level English but I do think that it can be so restricting and I look forward to the challenges ahead.

    I have a pile behind me waiting, just waiting to be read. Middlemarch and Othello are appealing. Six more weeks.....Six. More. Weeks.
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    (Original post by Obsidian)
    Make sure that you read it :cool:
    I'm looking forward to English at Uni - where have you firmed? Agree about the AOs, it can feel so superficial at times. I want to be able to take unusual ideas about texts and explain myself. AOs don't give you that sense of discovery! Ah well, not long left now.

    I have enjoyed A level English but I do think that it can be so restricting and I look forward to the challenges ahead.

    I have a pile behind me waiting, just waiting to be read. Middlemarch and Othello are appealing. Six more weeks.....Six. More. Weeks.

    I read Othello for AS - great play. I would highly, highly recommend reading it alongside AC Bradley's Shakespearean Tragedy (link to contents here: http://www.shakespeare-navigators.com/bradley/ ). In the Othello bit I found particularly interesting his attempt to explain the play in 'real' terms - ie with characters with real motives and in 'real' time, the whole concept of character criticism and all. Personally I think it's a tad anachronistic to try and apply our modern ideas about characters to a Renaissance play but that's getting into a big argument haha.

    I have firmed Durham, insuranced Royal Holloway but I plan to take a gap year to reapply to Oxford (got rejected this year which was hard to take.) What about you?
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    (Original post by _becca)
    I read Othello for AS - great play. I would highly, highly recommend reading it alongside AC Bradley's Shakespearean Tragedy (link to contents here: http://www.shakespeare-navigators.com/bradley/ ). In the Othello bit I found particularly interesting his attempt to explain the play in 'real' terms - ie with characters with real motives and in 'real' time, the whole concept of character criticism and all. Personally I think it's a tad anachronistic to try and apply our modern ideas about characters to a Renaissance play but that's getting into a big argument haha.

    I have firmed Durham, insuranced Royal Holloway but I plan to take a gap year to reapply to Oxford (got rejected this year which was hard to take.) What about you?
    I am really looking forward to reading it

    I dipped into a bit of Bradley's Shakespearean Tragedy when I studied Hamlet at AS. Bradley's text is one of the reasons I chose Othello as my next Shakespeare text as I have studied Hamlet and Macbeth at school, read King Lear and I want to read all of the essays without getting spoilers!

    Oxford reject here too - I have firmed Leeds and insuranced Royal Holloway! This summer is going to be fun.

    What are you planning to do in your gap year?
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    (Original post by Obsidian)
    I am really looking forward to reading it

    I dipped into a bit of Bradley's Shakespearean Tragedy when I studied Hamlet at AS. Bradley's text is one of the reasons I chose Othello as my next Shakespeare text as I have studied Hamlet and Macbeth at school, read King Lear and I want to read all of the essays without getting spoilers!

    Oxford reject here too - I have firmed Leeds and insuranced Royal Holloway! This summer is going to be fun.

    What are you planning to do in your gap year?

    Ahh unlucky mate, which college did you apply to? Leeds is excellent though so well done for the offer! Do you have summer plans then? Other than reading... :P

    Well I live in Oxford so I've got a job at Queen's college library over summer which is all conservation stuff, did it last summer and it was really fun! geekery ahoy hehe. After that if I can wrangle a job at a college that'd be fun, otherwise OUP or Blackwell's would be great perhaps
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    (Original post by _becca)
    Hahahah #croak
    Yes I have read The Wasps, though a long time ago! Would like to read again really.A lot of the political references etc are completely lost on me though :confused:

    So, you like AG comedy, what about the tragedies? QUICK, Euripides, Sophocles or Aeschylus? (have to admit 'The Frogs' actually changed my answer to this question hehe)
    I haven't read The Wasps before, though it's in the small volume I have sitting on my shelf. I buy a dozen or so books a week; some are ready instantly, others several weeks, or perhaps even months down the line. I haven't gotten round to it yet!

    Generally speaking, I prefer comedies and farces, though I'll read anything once, period withstanding. I've read Sophocles's Oedipus Rex and Euripides's Medea, though it was quite a while ago, and I could definitely benefit from a second reading. I'm currently wading through a series of Brecht plays at the moment, in an attempt to further my understanding of Godard's films (if such a thing is even possible). I'll see how it goes.
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    (Original post by _becca)
    Ahh unlucky mate, which college did you apply to? Leeds is excellent though so well done for the offer! Do you have summer plans then? Other than reading... :P

    Well I live in Oxford so I've got a job at Queen's college library over summer which is all conservation stuff, did it last summer and it was really fun! geekery ahoy hehe. After that if I can wrangle a job at a college that'd be fun, otherwise OUP or Blackwell's would be great perhaps
    Awesome! I'm sure you'll have a great year I keep looking for Waterstones jobs but they are so scarce.

    Mostly, I want to read and not make many plans. Just live a little spontaniously I will be going on holiday for a couple of weeks but beyond that, I am sleeping/reading/watching TV/preparing for Uni *fingers crossed* and seeing friends - revising really hits your social life! I'd love to go to the theatre too.

    Literally have a stack of books on my shelf: Othello, Robinson Cruesoe, Middlemarch, Vanity Fair, Crime and Punishment and Paradise Lost. Might have to get some shorter texts to space those out a bit!

    Question for everyone really - who likes re-reading books? I used to re-read occasionally but I want to re-read books much more now. Maybe that's due to A level English? Who knows? Just thought that I would throw that out there - so catch it
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    (Original post by Obsidian)
    Finished Jane Eyre last week, half-way through Great Expectations Who knows what is next? Might venture into poetry as revision should be mopping up lots of time.

    Abiraleft - I did Streetcar for my AS coursework! I enjoyed it. We did a re-creative piece so I chose to write a scene to go at the end.
    Finished reading A Streetcar Named Desire two days ago, thought it was great! It must have been very interesting doing it in class, I could see loads of places where production/stage directions and imagery could be discussed. I did Equus at AS-levels, which was also similar in that regard.

    (Original post by philistine)
    If you go with A Streetcar Named Desire, make sure you watch the film as well. Marlon Brando delivers, and delivers hard. Vivien Leigh is always a pleasure to look at, too.
    I intend to, as soon as I can get my hands on a copy of it!

    I think I'll start A Clockwork Orange now. :beard:
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    (Original post by Abiraleft)
    Finished reading A Streetcar Named Desire two days ago, thought it was great! It must have been very interesting doing it in class, I could see loads of places where production/stage directions and imagery could be discussed. I did Equus at AS-levels, which was also similar in that regard.



    I intend to, as soon as I can get my hands on a copy of it!

    I think I'll start A Clockwork Orange now. :beard:
    We spent a lot of time discussing symbolism and lots of people were doing different coursework questions so we had plenty of debate
    I really want to see a production of it sometime to see how they stage it. Particularly the streetcar....
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    (Original post by Obsidian)
    We spent a lot of time discussing symbolism and lots of people were doing different coursework questions so we had plenty of debate
    I really want to see a production of it sometime to see how they stage it. Particularly the streetcar....
    Have you read any Arthur Miller? A Streetcar Named Desire struck me as being pretty similar to Death of a Salesman - as well as Sam Shepard's True West. I suppose there's is bound to be something of a similar feel in them given that they are all American plays that examine different stages of the failure of the American Dream, but with the first two, I thought there was also a broad stylistic similarity (not necessarily in a production sense, but in the way it's written. Also, while we're on the subject, Death of a Salesman is apparently being shown on Broadway in a production that's received lots of acclaim and Tony nominations, and stars Phillip Seymour Hoffman as Willy Loman :coma:).

    There's also Miller's The Crucible, which is a completely different kind of animal, but is one of my favourite plays so I'd recommend anyway.
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    (Original post by Abiraleft)
    Have you read any Arthur Miller? A Streetcar Named Desire struck me as being pretty similar to Death of a Salesman - as well as Sam Shepard's True West. I suppose there's is bound to be something of a similar feel in them given that they are all American plays that examine different stages of the failure of the American Dream, but with the first two, I thought there was also a broad stylistic similarity (not necessarily in a production sense, but in the way it's written. Also, while we're on the subject, Death of a Salesman is apparently being shown on Broadway in a production that's received lots of acclaim and Tony nominations, and stars Phillip Seymour Hoffman as Willy Loman :coma:).

    There's also Miller's The Crucible, which is a completely different kind of animal, but is one of my favourite plays so I'd recommend anyway.
    Ooooooh. Not yet - I'll put it on my to-do list
    Thanks for the recommendations
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    (Original post by Hype en Ecosse)
    :lol:


    I should probably get round to reading Atlas Shrugged at some point. :ninja:
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    I just took another look at Edmund Spenser's Mutability Cantos.

    http://www.luminarium.org/renascence...s/queeneM.html

    They're really really good - epic poetry about the 'titaness', Mutability, and her attempt to usurp power from the Roman pantheon on the grounds that, since they are all changeable and very similar in personality to mortals, they are under her sway and should fall under her authority - her whole argument seems to be Spenser ridiculing pantheism in general, it's pretty clever:

    But you Dan Ioue, that only constant are,
    And King of all the rest, as ye do clame,
    Are you not subiect eeke to this misfare?
    Then let me aske you this withouten blame,
    Where were ye borne? some say in Crete by name,
    Others in Thebes, and others other-where;
    But wheresoeuer they comment the same,
    They all consent that ye begotten were,
    And borne here in this world, ne other can appeare.

    Then are ye mortall borne, and thrall to me,
    Vnlesse the kingdome of the sky yee make
    Immortall, and vnchangeable to bee;
    Besides, that power and vertue which ye spake,
    That ye here worke, doth many changes take,
    And your owne natures change: for, each of you
    That vertue haue, or this, or that to make,
    Is checkt and changed from his nature trew,
    By others opposition or obliquid view.


    It ends when 'Great Dame Nature' steps in and delivers a pretty unclear rebuttal where she suggests that, rather than change ruling over everything, everything uses change in order to 'work their own perfection so by fate'. It's really interesting.

    (This is how I procrastinate.)
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    (Original post by Obsidian)
    Awesome! I'm sure you'll have a great year I keep looking for Waterstones jobs but they are so scarce.
    Good luck! Working at Waterstone's was the best job I ever had, it's an amazing place to work.

    Wrt the question about rereading books; I don't tend to because there are way more books I want to read than I'll ever have time to in my life so I want to get as many as I can read rather than repeating what I've already done.
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    (Original post by Norfolkadam)
    Good luck! Working at Waterstone's was the best job I ever had, it's an amazing place to work.

    Wrt the question about rereading books; I don't tend to because there are way more books I want to read than I'll ever have time to in my life so I want to get as many as I can read rather than repeating what I've already done.
    Thanks
    You have a good point and it really is a personal preference. I like to re-read sometimes, particularly if I have read something rapidly. Re-reading King Lear at the moment and this made me realise that Thomas Hardy had quoted it in 'Tess of the D'Urbervilles'.

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