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Old 02-24-2021, 11:16 AM   #61
kandwo
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Originally Posted by Sirtel View Post
As things stand now, you usually don't get any appreciation for the culture from the school literature lessons. Quite the contrary.
To be clear, I mean it only in the third sense listed here: https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/appreciation (definition c). But maybe school fails at that, too?

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Originally Posted by JSWolf View Post
There are so many books out there that hy would you keep trying to find a classic you like when you didn't like the ones you've read? Just go find a genre you do like.


The problem is that Shakespeare was meant to be seen and not read. You might find you like Hamlet if you saw it performed. I've seen movie adaptations of classic books that I would not like to read. Sometimes, the problem is the style of writing.



But, some of these other viewpoints aren't relevant to anything today. Sure you can read about different viewpoints, but not viewpoints that are obsolete. The problem also is in the way some of these books were written back then. If schools read books that were relevant to current times and using current language, then they might be more accepted.
First of all, classics are not a genre. They span several genres and disliking one doesn't mean your bound to dislike all. Shakespeare is not the same as Jane Austen or Chekhov. If anything classics are books that tend to be more intellectual, forcing you to think. (Maybe there are exceptions to this.) This more than anything is why many people I know avoid them - whenever they read, they do so for pleasure and want something simpler.

Nothing wrong with that. I don't see anything wrong with not reading at all either. Humanity survived very long not reading anything at all - not even knowing that you can write things down! - and was arguably all the happier for it.

If scifi is the only thing that makes you happy - go for it! If nothing other than fan fiction about lesbian vampires in new age cultist settings tickles your fancy - I'm all for it!

Regarding Shakespeare I actually agree! I'd say show it either in a modernized TV version or in a play with the original pronunciation (improves it a hundredfold!).

Your point about viewpoints being obsolete is beyond me. I don't get how a viewpoint can be obsolete, but whatever floats your boat

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I find the only way to read a play is to read it out loud doing the voices. But also I can hardly read poetry. I need to read it out, or better still hear someone else or a recording of me.
In poetry, rhythm is very important, as is the interplay of sounds within and between the words. Reading poetry quietly in ones mind makes little sense. In fact, reading poetry makes little sense.

I think we should return to the ancient ways of poetry - enhanced by music. That's the way it was performed in ancient Greece and Rome, and that's what people seem to prefer naturally (just compare songs to dry poems in popularity).

Kate Tempest is a great example of this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dH797RUNJIY (a poem about war read with some supporting music in the background)

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The problem (as I see it) is that if school is where you get the books you read and you really dislike them, then you may not find a passion for reading. If your parents do not help you with reading then you may not end up wanting/liking to read. My mother read and got me into reading. School, didn't do a thing.
Once again, I don't think school should be expected to get you to like reading. It's something you are likely to develop (or not) a liking to on your own. I would think very few people have discovered they love reading from a school assignment.
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Old 02-24-2021, 07:05 PM   #62
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Once again, I don't think school should be expected to get you to like reading. It's something you are likely to develop (or not) a liking to on your own. I would think very few people have discovered they love reading from a school assignment.
But school should also not turn you off to reading. So Schools (IMHO) need to make a concerted effort to choose books that are more relevant and use current language.
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Old 02-25-2021, 10:42 AM   #63
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But school should also not turn you off to reading. So Schools (IMHO) need to make a concerted effort to choose books that are more relevant and use current language.
I'd agree with this if it didn't frequently end up with books both depressing and boring. Put in a school setting, 'relevant' tends towards the misery of the current or immediate past (or a near future dystopia based on current concerns), and 'current language' ends up being either composed of short lived slang (belonging to the last generation) or sounding dumbed down.

One of my dear daughters is now turned off by the mere terms YA or New York Bestseller.
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Old 02-25-2021, 11:41 AM   #64
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I'd agree with this if it didn't frequently end up with books both depressing and boring. Put in a school setting, 'relevant' tends towards the misery of the current or immediate past (or a near future dystopia based on current concerns), and 'current language' ends up being either composed of short lived slang (belonging to the last generation) or sounding dumbed down.

One of my dear daughters is now turned off by the mere terms YA or New York Bestseller.
Books don't have to be depressing or boring. But most using in school are depressing because they are so bad.
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Old 02-25-2021, 02:06 PM   #65
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Who said reading has to be fun? It must be a sentence to serve!

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Books don't have to be depressing or boring. But most using in school are depressing because they are so bad.
Here is your nemesis, unfair reader. A new category has been specially created for this book: punitive literature. They tell me that each of the condemned has asked in vain for an alternative sentence: jail, exorbitant fines, corporal punishment, apparently invoking even the executioner's ax. There are rumors of a plot as obscure as it is incomprehensible; badly written in an unknown language with countless spelling and syntax errors; and full of refractory periods to any type of analysis. But you don't have to believe everything, these few confused news come in the end from nullity of the lowest degree, condemned like you to the most degrading of penalties, the reality is much worse.

I cannot say more: I have no faults to pay for, I have never been forced to the infamous reading.


ps: I wrote it in Italian, then it was too difficult and for the translation I helped myself with the Google translator, if you don't like it then blame Google.

Last edited by ps67; 02-25-2021 at 02:11 PM.
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Old 03-01-2021, 12:46 PM   #66
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Originally Posted by Quoth View Post
I find the only way to read a play is to read it out loud doing the voices. But also I can hardly read poetry. I need to read it out, or better still hear someone else or a recording of me.
Interesting. For me, I *do* hear the words while I'm reading. My imagination supplies the voices. I also build images in my head of the settings and what the characters look like. I don't need plays or poems read aloud to me, I already hear them and see them while I'm reading.

I think that may be part of why I have a hard time with audio books. They interfere with the voice in my head, and it's hard for me to pay attention.

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Old 03-01-2021, 01:46 PM   #67
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Interesting. For me, I *do* hear the words while I'm reading. My imagination supplies the voices. I also build images in my head of the settings and what the characters look like. I don't need plays or poems read aloud to me, I already hear them and see them while I'm reading.


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Old 03-03-2021, 09:18 AM   #68
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In my experience, it's not much to do with parents either. My parents didn't read, but at least they bought lots of books (which were very cheap in the Soviet Union). They bought lots of books for children as well. And my mother read to me when I was very little (I don't remember it myself). I was an avid reader since I was three or four and didn't need any encouraging from my parents to read. I just read everything I could get my hands on. Starting with children's books, of course. But I already read adult books as well by the time I started school.

Now my sister and my nieces grew up in the same circumstances. Lots of books at home and parents reading to them. But they didn't become readers. My sister read when she was a teenager, but lost interest in her twenties and never regained it. My nieces have never read for pleasure at all. So I think it's an inborn trait to an extent.
My love of reading sprang when I was 5 years old, and began with Indian comics that an aunt of mine used to sell. She had a dark, large room reserved for storing a lot of comics that were of cheap quality. I carried a wired bulb like a torch to maneuver my way around the piles of books. I often wonder if that setting - climbing loads of iron framing that held the books in the dark, feeling like an Aladin - sparked a fierce love of books and English language in particular.
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Old 03-03-2021, 05:20 PM   #69
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I remember when I was younger, reading in bed under the covers using a flashlight. I also used to read the cereal box while eating breakfast.
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Old 03-03-2021, 06:05 PM   #70
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I used to get turned round under the blankets while reading with a flashlight
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Old 03-03-2021, 06:17 PM   #71
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There is a strong element of snobbery among those who read books and how they view everyone else. We all know it.

But the original article was all over the place and rambling.

We've argued here many times over things such as:
- What books are to be in the "canon" of "the classics" that "all" students should read
+ forever a hot potato
- Is listening to a book "reading"
- Is the practice of reading a book morally superior to watching tv shows?
- Are "genre" books for the "low brow".

It's like the article tried to take on every controversy in reading
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Old 03-03-2021, 06:20 PM   #72
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Originally Posted by leebase View Post
There is a strong element of snobbery among those who read books and how they view everyone else. We all know it.

But the original article was all over the place and rambling.

We've argued here many times over things such as:
- What books are to be in the "canon" of "the classics" that "all" students should read
+ forever a hot potato
- Is listening to a book "reading"
- Is the practice of reading a book morally superior to watching tv shows?
- Are "genre" books for the "low brow".

It's like the article tried to take on every controversy in reading
Reading is not morally superior to watching TV and genre books are not "low brow". Those ideas are rubbish and snobbish.
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Old 03-03-2021, 08:53 PM   #73
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Reading is not morally superior to watching TV and genre books are not "low brow". Those ideas are rubbish and snobbish.
Guess you and I aren't "book people".
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Old 03-04-2021, 08:00 AM   #74
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Reading is not morally superior to watching TV and genre books are not "low brow". Those ideas are rubbish and snobbish.
Indeed they are just different. Some acclaimed literary fiction on the other hand can be damaging to your mental health.
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Old 03-04-2021, 10:08 AM   #75
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Originally Posted by JSWolf View Post
Reading is not morally superior to watching TV and genre books are not "low brow". Those ideas are rubbish and snobbish.
Reading might be better than watching TV for some who don't believe that Sturgeon's Law doesn't apply equally to both media.
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