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Mel Mudkiper
Jan 19, 2012

I think this is a pretty good draft class overall. It's really shaping up that way because of the water types.


OscarDiggs posted:

Oh wow I meant it was! It was interesting and eye opening!

It must have autocompleted as hasn't. My bad for not checking! I definetly intend to go back to Russian Lit at some point!

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OscarDiggs
Jun 1, 2011

Those sure are words on pages which are given in a sequential order!



Well I am here to improve my reading ability. Reading what I write is as good a place to start as any .

OscarDiggs
Jun 1, 2011

Those sure are words on pages which are given in a sequential order!


Alrighty. Dunces it is, then maybe/probably followed up by Heart of Darkness because it is pretty short. Dunces is a bit longer so expect my responses to it to be up in several, shorter posts.

Mel Mudkiper
Jan 19, 2012

I think this is a pretty good draft class overall. It's really shaping up that way because of the water types.


Dunces is long but its surprisingly easy to read

Franchescanado
Feb 23, 2013

I AM A STUPIDLY SEXY WOLFMAN



Grimey Drawer

Whereas Heart of Darkness is short, but the prose is dense and the pacing’s much slower.

OscarDiggs
Jun 1, 2011

Those sure are words on pages which are given in a sequential order!


Mel Mudkiper posted:

Dunces is long but its surprisingly easy to read

Franchescanado posted:

Whereas Heart of Darkness is short, but the prose is dense and the pacing’s much slower.

So in short, books are a land of contrasts.

Franchescanado
Feb 23, 2013

I AM A STUPIDLY SEXY WOLFMAN



Grimey Drawer

OscarDiggs posted:

So in short, books are a land of contrasts.

Yes. Confederacy of Dunces is 400+ pages, but Ignatius spends like 40 pages eating hot dogs. Whereas Heart of Darkness has a lot of tangents and observations of human nature and details about colonialism.

Many copies of Heart of Darkness look short and/or small, but that's also because it's public domain, so plenty of publishers will format it with small typeface and as few textblocks as possible (with the cheapest paper) for the biggest profit margin.

Antivehicular
Dec 30, 2011

I wanna sing one for the cars
That are right now headed silent down the highway
And it's dark and there is nobody driving
And something has got to give


To Kill A Mockingbird is also not a hard read and isn't that long.

Franchescanado
Feb 23, 2013

I AM A STUPIDLY SEXY WOLFMAN



Grimey Drawer

Antivehicular posted:

To Kill A Mockingbird is also not a hard read and isn't that long.

Of the five or so books mentioned, this is the one I would push for the most. Though CoD is the lightest of the options.

OscarDiggs
Jun 1, 2011

Those sure are words on pages which are given in a sequential order!


I can always slot in To Kill A Mockingbird sooner. CoD, TkaM, HoD. Or it can be something entirely off base after Dunces is done. They were just examples of books I can now easily get my hands on.

Mel Mudkiper
Jan 19, 2012

I think this is a pretty good draft class overall. It's really shaping up that way because of the water types.


I think Mockingbird is a poo poo book sorry thread

Franchescanado
Feb 23, 2013

I AM A STUPIDLY SEXY WOLFMAN



Grimey Drawer

Mel Mudkiper posted:

I think Mockingbird is a poo poo book sorry thread

Mel I don't mind your crazy opinions I just wish you would elaborate on them without me having to ask you over two or three posts first.

Mel Mudkiper
Jan 19, 2012

I think this is a pretty good draft class overall. It's really shaping up that way because of the water types.


Franchescanado posted:

Mel I don't mind your crazy opinions I just wish you would elaborate on them without me having to ask you over two or three posts first.

Sorry brah.

I just don't think its very good and it has a very regressive view on the ethics of racism that almost wholly robs black men and women of agency and empathy

Hieronymous Alloy
Jan 30, 2009


Why! Why!! Why must you refuse to accept that Dr. Hieronymous Alloy's Genetically Enhanced Cream Corn Is Superior to the Leading Brand on the Market!?!



Morbid Hound

The modern critique of tkam is that it has a white-savior problem. All works are flawed though.

I like arguing that tkam is the greatest work of southern fiction by a white author because it sends Faulkner folks into conniption fits.

Ras Het
May 23, 2007

when I was a child, I spake as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child - but now I am a man.


To Catch a Mockingbird in the Rye

Antivehicular
Dec 30, 2011

I wanna sing one for the cars
That are right now headed silent down the highway
And it's dark and there is nobody driving
And something has got to give


I think TKaM has its flaws; I mostly pointed it out because, of the stuff listed that I've read (haven't read CoD, need to get around to that), it seemed like a good candidate for being relatively easy/relaxing to read while still offering practice in literary analysis. HoD is shorter but substantially more challenging, IMHO.

Mel Mudkiper
Jan 19, 2012

I think this is a pretty good draft class overall. It's really shaping up that way because of the water types.


Hieronymous Alloy posted:

The modern critique of tkam is that it has a white-savior problem. All works are flawed though.

I like arguing that tkam is the greatest work of southern fiction by a white author because it sends Faulkner folks into conniption fits.

Broke: Faulkner
Woke: Lee
Bespoke: Mcdowell

Hieronymous Alloy posted:

The modern critique of tkam is that it has a white-savior problem. All works are flawed though.

I like arguing that tkam is the greatest work of southern fiction by a white author because it sends Faulkner folks into conniption fits.

I mean, its not even the white savior problem as much as the implicit devaluation of black lives by making the wrongful imprisonment and death of a black man have the primary significance of giving a little white girl a better understanding of the world or that a white lawyer futilely going against a biased system is noble even when the consequences for the black man are unchanged.

It feels like the life of Tom Robinson only has significance in so far that it affects the privileged white family of the protagonist

Mel Mudkiper fucked around with this message at 02:16 on Nov 30, 2018

Bilirubin
Feb 16, 2014

The sanctioned action is to CHUG!!!




Bleak Gremlin

Mel Mudkiper posted:

It feels like the life of Tom Robinson only has significance in so far that it affects the privileged white family of the protagonist

Yes.

Same for Sydney Poitier and Cary Grant TBQH

OscarDiggs
Jun 1, 2011

Those sure are words on pages which are given in a sequential order!


Ignatius is such a weirdly unpleasant and unpleasantly weird dude, it's great. I'm about a hundred pages in and I'm thinking I'm going to read the whole thing through before putting my thoughts down in the thread; every so often I have to reread a sentence or paragraph over and over and each time, a new layer id revealed, its great.

One thing, I am sort of getting the feeling I'm missing a core detail. Is there some important context I should know before getting to far in or can I safely take it at face value?

Sham bam bamina!
Nov 6, 2012

ƨtupid cat




OscarDiggs posted:

One thing, I am sort of getting the feeling I'm missing a core detail. Is there some important context I should know before getting to far in or can I safely take it at face value?
I don't quite understand the question. The only thing I'd really point out is that the book is less about Ignatius than it is about the people connected through him, but I'm sure that you already picked up on that yourself.

Mel Mudkiper
Jan 19, 2012

I think this is a pretty good draft class overall. It's really shaping up that way because of the water types.


OscarDiggs posted:

Ignatius is such a weirdly unpleasant and unpleasantly weird dude, it's great. I'm about a hundred pages in and I'm thinking I'm going to read the whole thing through before putting my thoughts down in the thread; every so often I have to reread a sentence or paragraph over and over and each time, a new layer id revealed, its great.

One thing, I am sort of getting the feeling I'm missing a core detail. Is there some important context I should know before getting to far in or can I safely take it at face value?

It should be noted that Ignatius is a mix between people the author saw while working for LSU and the type of person the author worried that he was

OscarDiggs
Jun 1, 2011

Those sure are words on pages which are given in a sequential order!


Sham bam bamina! posted:

I don't quite understand the question. The only thing I'd really point out is that the book is less about Ignatius than it is about the people connected through him, but I'm sure that you already picked up on that yourself.

It was more I was worried that I was missing the forest for the trees so to speak; allowing myself to get distracted by the to obvious stuff.

Mel Mudkiper posted:

It should be noted that Ignatius is a mix between people the author saw while working for LSU and the type of person the author worried that he was

Interesting! Thanks.

Normal Adult Human
Feb 12, 2012

by FactsAreUseless


OscarDiggs posted:

Ignatius is such a weirdly unpleasant and unpleasantly weird dude, it's great. I'm about a hundred pages in and I'm thinking I'm going to read the whole thing through before putting my thoughts down in the thread; every so often I have to reread a sentence or paragraph over and over and each time, a new layer id revealed, its great.

One thing, I am sort of getting the feeling I'm missing a core detail. Is there some important context I should know before getting to far in or can I safely take it at face value?

He's you.

Khizan
Jul 30, 2013




Franchescanado posted:

An example of this from CineD*, from about a year ago, a goon couldn't comprehend how to interpret film beyond what the film presented or reading about the filmmaker's intention. Symbolism, interpretation, themes, motifs, all of it was beyond their own creative interpretations. It became such an issue that they were given a Mod Challenge to come up with any interpretation of any aspect of Alien. All they had to do was pick one or two signifieds and then discuss their signifiers; it could be bat-poo poo insane, as long as it was an original interpretation. They were even given examples of how to do so. Their result? An essay detailing the art director's intention, the cinematographer's intention, the writer's intention, and Ridley Scott's intention. They were incapable of anything other than reading imdb trivia and wikipedia articles. Heavy reliance on author intention creates goons like that. (If I can find a link, I'll edit it in, because it's a great argument for Death of the Author.)

It's a bit late, but I remember this.

GonSmithe's challenge to Baron Bifford.

The OP of that thread has links to the challenge and the submitted essays.

Khizan fucked around with this message at 02:23 on Dec 10, 2018

Franchescanado
Feb 23, 2013

I AM A STUPIDLY SEXY WOLFMAN



Grimey Drawer

Khizan posted:

It's a bit late, but I remember this.

GonSmithe's challenge to Baron Bifford.

You loving rule!

OscarDiggs
Jun 1, 2011

Those sure are words on pages which are given in a sequential order!



Huge, if true.

Khizan posted:

It's a bit late, but I remember this.

GonSmithe's challenge to Baron Bifford.

The OP of that thread has links to the challenge and the submitted essays.

I'll add that to the OP at some point.

EDIT: Done

OscarDiggs fucked around with this message at 14:54 on Dec 10, 2018

OscarDiggs
Jun 1, 2011

Those sure are words on pages which are given in a sequential order!


Okay. All done with Confederacy with dunces.

There was a moment, toward about... page 30-40, where we're with Ignacious, his Mother and the Police Officer. He's watching a clearasil commericial. I became terrified. A Condfederacy of Dunces was no longer an amusing book about an absolutely wretched person; it was a cursed mirror, reflecting back at me some of the worst aspects I ever saw in myself throughout the years. I couldn't continue and yet I couldn't put it down.

That terror passed, and I went on again appreciating it as a picaresque walk in absurdity, but I never forgot it. In a way it was the perfect book to read on the run up to New Years Day.

So, very enjoyable at the end of the day, with a brief walk into existential dread. I'm going to take a few days before moving onto something else. I'm thinking of delving back into something Russian, either this time or next. I got Crime and Punishment from a family member who knew I was reading "Hard Books" so, that's now an option.

Of course, suggestions from th peanut gallery are more the welcome.

I hope everyone had a merry christmas and a happy new year!

vyelkin
Jan 2, 2011

Jozy loves scoring like a fat kid loves eating cake.





I'll narrow my suggestions for Russian literature down to two short but excellent novels, so you can keep putting off the lengthy "and" books:

The Captain's Daughter by Pushkin
Heart of a Dog by Bulgakov

Mrenda
Mar 14, 2012



I'd suggest jumping over to Virginia Woolf and Mrs Dalloway because I just read it in an evening and want to see what you think of it.

Mrenda
Mar 14, 2012



Mel Mudkiper posted:

Post-Modernism can be perhaps best defined by Jean-Francois Lyotard in "The Post-Modern Condition" (see: https://monoskop.org/images/e/e0/Ly...n_Knowledge.pdf

This explains a lot about your posting. And I mean that in a good way. Cheers for the link, it was interesting.

If there are any more philosophical PDFs you'd recommend and link to I might, again, stay up all night drinking beer and reading them.

Mel Mudkiper
Jan 19, 2012

I think this is a pretty good draft class overall. It's really shaping up that way because of the water types.


Mrenda posted:

This explains a lot about your posting. And I mean that in a good way. Cheers for the link, it was interesting.

If there are any more philosophical PDFs you'd recommend and link to I might, again, stay up all night drinking beer and reading them.

I am just touched someone finally read a link I posted

OscarDiggs
Jun 1, 2011

Those sure are words on pages which are given in a sequential order!


vyelkin posted:

I'll narrow my suggestions for Russian literature down to two short but excellent novels, so you can keep putting off the lengthy "and" books:

The Captain's Daughter by Pushkin
Heart of a Dog by Bulgakov

Thanks! I'm pretty interested in the concept of Heart of a Dog, so that may be what I pick.

Mel Mudkiper posted:

I am just touched someone finally read a link I posted

I read them! I don't always understand them and usually need to do a bit of further background reading, but I read them.

pleasecallmechrist
Sep 22, 2013

I lack the most basic processes inherent in all living organisms: reproducing and dying.

Mel Mudkiper posted:

I mean, its not even the white savior problem as much as the implicit devaluation of black lives by making the wrongful imprisonment and death of a black man have the primary significance of giving a little white girl a better understanding of the world or that a white lawyer futilely going against a biased system is noble even when the consequences for the black man are unchanged.

It feels like the life of Tom Robinson only has significance in so far that it affects the privileged white family of the protagonist

I'm not a big fan of TKAM but for those who are attempting to learn to read literature and are exploring theory, Mel provides a perfect example of the limitations and delusional connect the dots that is applying the oppressed and oppressor dynamic to readings and why critical theory and, even more so, intersectionality are middle brow, sled righteous onanism. Note this is also Mel's defacto approach to texts. He has literally just implied that a text taking place in the Jim Crow South is regressive and devaluing of black life because a white family who is involved in the communal event and/or futile defense of a black man draw conclusions from the experience and though they tried they did not succeed.

Atticus comes to believe the life of Robbins inherently valuable in that he is a human being which is evidenced by Atticus' desire to defend him. Atticus' morality does not provide Robbin's value but is indicative of his own moral stance and belief in the innate value of human beings. Nor does his effort and failure to defend him indicate some priviliged nobility that shrugs off the injustice of the story's trial.
For one to believe themselves thoughtful in pointing out the differences in power between black and white people in this historical context is already ridiculous but it is absurd and intellectually stunting to apply a perception of power structures so completely that for a group of people to draw conclusions from an injustice to another person is to "implicitly devalue" the life of that person.
Theory is fine and even fun if you realize it's only an exercise in perspective and not indicative of a truth.

pleasecallmechrist
Sep 22, 2013

I lack the most basic processes inherent in all living organisms: reproducing and dying.

One of the first stories that made me love literature is Hands by Sherwood Anderson in his collection, Winesburg, Ohio. I recommend that to OP. The ambiguity of the whole story is a great exercise in reader's tendency to project or assume. It was just a lower undergrad class but it was one of the few stories that everyone had a vocal opinion on. Happy New Year everyone.

Mel Mudkiper
Jan 19, 2012

I think this is a pretty good draft class overall. It's really shaping up that way because of the water types.


pleasecallmechrist posted:

I'm not a big fan of TKAM but for those who are attempting to learn to read literature and are exploring theory, Mel provides a perfect example of the limitations and delusional connect the dots that is applying the oppressed and oppressor dynamic to readings and why critical theory and, even more so, intersectionality are middle brow, sled righteous onanism. Note this is also Mel's defacto approach to texts. He has literally just implied that a text taking place in the Jim Crow South is regressive and devaluing of black life because a white family who is involved in the communal event and/or futile defense of a black man draw conclusions from the experience and though they tried they did not succeed.

fuckin sjws am I right

I mean, you missed the point of the critique so wholly that I can only assume its deliberate

Franchescanado
Feb 23, 2013

I AM A STUPIDLY SEXY WOLFMAN



Grimey Drawer

Winesburg, Ohio is really good. I still think about the story cycle of the man who talks to God and inherits the farm, makes it successful, and then goes on a drive with his grandson during a psychotic episode, which he believes is a religious experience.

Such a wonderful, melancholic book.

Normal Adult Human
Feb 12, 2012

by FactsAreUseless


OscarDiggs posted:

Okay. All done with Confederacy with dunces.

There was a moment, toward about... page 30-40, where we're with Ignacious, his Mother and the Police Officer. He's watching a clearasil commericial. I became terrified. A Condfederacy of Dunces was no longer an amusing book about an absolutely wretched person; it was a cursed mirror, reflecting back at me some of the worst aspects I ever saw in myself throughout the years. I couldn't continue and yet I couldn't put it down.

That terror passed, and I went on again appreciating it as a picaresque walk in absurdity, but I never forgot it. In a way it was the perfect book to read on the run up to New Years Day.

So, very enjoyable at the end of the day, with a brief walk into existential dread. I'm going to take a few days before moving onto something else. I'm thinking of delving back into something Russian, either this time or next. I got Crime and Punishment from a family member who knew I was reading "Hard Books" so, that's now an option.

Of course, suggestions from th peanut gallery are more the welcome.

I hope everyone had a merry christmas and a happy new year!

read something happened by joseph heller.

pleasecallmechrist
Sep 22, 2013

I lack the most basic processes inherent in all living organisms: reproducing and dying.

Mel Mudkiper posted:

fuckin sjws am I right

I mean, you missed the point of the critique so wholly that I can only assume its deliberate

This has nothing to do with sjws. Your critique is drummed up. There is no indication in that text that Robbins life is not inherently valuable. And because his live has value to the protagonists, which is contrast to the society, that there can be themes at all outside of historical context. If you disagree with what I said, as you do, cool then respond to that and we can have a great discussion. My response is thoughtful enough to provoke thought or actual opinion not just uh you totally didn't get it man.

Mel Mudkiper
Jan 19, 2012

I think this is a pretty good draft class overall. It's really shaping up that way because of the water types.


pleasecallmechrist posted:

My response is thoughtful enough to provoke thought or actual opinion

pleasecallmechrist posted:

Mel provides a perfect example of the limitations and delusional connect the dots that is applying the oppressed and oppressor dynamic to readings and why critical theory and, even more so, intersectionality are middle brow, sled righteous onanism. Note this is also Mel's defacto approach to texts.

As I said before, your critique misses the point so much that I am not sure how to respond to it without taking you back to the basics of critical theory, but hey, I will try

pleasecallmechrist posted:

He has literally just implied that a text taking place in the Jim Crow South is regressive and devaluing of black life because a white family who is involved in the communal event and/or futile defense of a black man draw conclusions from the experience and though they tried they did not succeed.

For one to believe themselves thoughtful in pointing out the differences in power between black and white people in this historical context is already ridiculous but it is absurd and intellectually stunting to apply a perception of power structures so completely that for a group of people to draw conclusions from an injustice to another person is to "implicitly devalue" the life of that person.

pleasecallmechrist posted:

And because his live has value to the protagonists, which is contrast to the society, that there can be themes at all outside of historical context.

You seem to be operating under the assumption that my criticism of Robinson's life having value only in relation to the white protagonists is a criticism based on historical context. Your response suggests you believe I am critiquing racism in a book set during a period of racism, and asking the book to apply achronistic behavior from the characters. This is completely missing the point.

There is nothing historical about my criticism. The issues with the objectification are not because an era, but because of the perspective applied by the author. It is not society that devalues Tom Robinson, it is the author and the narration that does so. By taking the historical realities of racism and applying the narrative consequence of them to their effect on the white protagonists, the novel devalues Tom Robinson. The value of a black man is not in his ability to enlighten a white person either through suffering or friendship. This is the delusion most mainstream treatments on race seem to operate under. Its a story about racism for the sake of a white audience.

The "its historical" argument falls flat specifically when you consider books written in and about this era have avoided this issue. Native Son and Invisible Man both deal with this era and the historical realities of it without reducing the meaning of a black man's life to the enlightenment of a white person. The failure of the novel is that Tom Robinson exists as a character for the sake of Atticus, Scout, and the white reader. He is not a developed person whose life has consequence outside of those effects.

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Mel Mudkiper
Jan 19, 2012

I think this is a pretty good draft class overall. It's really shaping up that way because of the water types.


Upon reflection, its interesting how Jan and Max from Native Son are very effective critiques of the arrogance behind the portrayal of Atticus and Scout a full decade before the book it was written

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