Wednesday, August 19, 2009

I'm feeling overwhelmed, but wait . . .

I know how to do this. How to read literature? How to make sense of any work of art? I think this is the best approach:

Ask yourself, "If I were the artist, why would I have created this?"

If you can answer that question, then I think you "get it," insofar as any work of art can be completely understood.

Answering that question will give you the "meaning" of the work.

As far as technique goes, see if you can answer how the artist communicated their point. If it's a work of literature, then how do the plot, writing style, characterization, and symbols in the piece work together to make the point.

Just two questions.

It's really easy, isn't it? Pass me Ulysses.

The Norton Anthology of English Literature . . .

Is excellent. This can keep you busy for a lifetime. I checked it out from the library along with my Everyman's Library selections. It's got it all . . . definitions, pictures, a vast compilation of essential works, timelines, critical essays, bibliographies, endless "for further exploration" resources. It'll make the nerd in all of us drool!

Can't wait to finally make sense of a vast topic that I've been curious about for a long time.

Join me as I read the Everyman's Library

The Everyman's Library satisfies my passion for two things: reading and lists. They have a "100 Essentials" that fits the bill perfectly. If I can get through this series, I will always be the smartest person in the room . . . of course that's why I (or anyone) reads.

Check it out at:

The Everyman's Library was originally published in the UK and was designed to be make the classics affordable for the layman, hence the title of the series. A pleasing democratic touch.

Clarissa . . . I want you back . . .

Nickelodeon in the 90s. Now those were the days. Love this song, happy memories . . . and Melissa is still so cool this many years later!