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Topic: 2012 classics challenge--a working list

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Subject: 2012 classics challenge--a working list
Date Posted: 10/21/2011 2:36 AM ET
Member Since: 11/18/2009
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Here are the categories suggested thus far. Let's call this our working list and make adjustments as needed.

1) a book that changed the world

2) a book that changed your world

3) biography

4) wit lit

5) noir (American or otherwise)

6) buldungsroman

7) literary award recipient

8) dystopias

9) 1000 pages or more

10) 100 pages or less

11) particular authors (required numbers would vary)

12) choosing from an established list (100 best books of all time, or something along those lines)

Comments? (Feel free to suggest new categories.)

                                                                            Rose

Date Posted: 10/21/2011 8:07 PM ET
Member Since: 6/19/2007
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what is this wit lit you speak of?

Date Posted: 10/22/2011 9:43 AM ET
Member Since: 11/18/2009
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"Wit lit"--humor. I got this from a post by Tome Trader. I like the idea!

                                                       Rose

Date Posted: 10/22/2011 4:23 PM ET
Member Since: 3/27/2009
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sevenspi,

Wit lit is classic literature that is humorous or funny or contains at least something to make you snicker, guffaw, or chuckle slightly at least once.

 

Mark Twain's work for example. Sometimes Dickens can be funny. 

Date Posted: 10/22/2011 4:25 PM ET
Member Since: 3/27/2009
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I am hoping others chime in their ideas and we can change out at least 2 or 3 of those ideas. Biography, for example. I know I thought of it, but I bet it will be difficult to find a variety of classic biographies.

 

 

All I can think of is Elizabeth Gaskell's bio of her friend Charlotte Bronte written in 1857.



Last Edited on: 10/22/11 4:28 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 10/22/2011 5:52 PM ET
Member Since: 11/18/2009
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Maybe we could extend the biography category a bit by saying the biography should be about a classic author.

                                                                                              Rose

Date Posted: 10/22/2011 6:53 PM ET
Member Since: 5/4/2009
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Maybe the biography category could include autobiographies.

It could include books like Benjamin Franklin's autobiography, slave narratives such as Douglass's or Equiano's, or even ones like Rousseau's Confessions.

Date Posted: 10/22/2011 9:07 PM ET
Member Since: 11/18/2009
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Autobiographies are definitely biographies. That's a good suggestion, Caralen.

                                                                                    Rose

Date Posted: 10/23/2011 12:44 PM ET
Member Since: 6/19/2007
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I missed last year, but have we done classic fantasy yet (i.e. Dunsany, Tolkien, George MacDonald, Lewis Carroll, L. Frank Baum, even Homer could count)?



Last Edited on: 10/23/11 12:46 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 10/23/2011 1:11 PM ET
Member Since: 11/18/2009
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I'm willing to insert classic fantasy into the list (instead of classics under 100 pages, perhaps).

Or we could have 13 choices, but readers choose 12.

                                                                               Rose

Date Posted: 10/23/2011 1:25 PM ET
Member Since: 10/4/2010
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I like the categories. I also like the "classic fantasy" idea.

#2 ("a book that changed your world") is a re-read, correct?

Will there be a 13th category (as an alternative)?

Date Posted: 10/23/2011 1:51 PM ET
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13 categories! A baker's dozen. Nice.

A book that changed your life would definitely be a re-read. I just don't happen to have any books that are classics that changed my life. sad

 

Classic fantasy? Hmmm

Date Posted: 10/23/2011 2:11 PM ET
Member Since: 5/15/2010
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I really like the category classic fantasy. Some wonderful choices there. I also like the baker's dozen 13 categories ; gives us more options. List is really shaping up nicely -- good job!
Date Posted: 10/23/2011 3:33 PM ET
Member Since: 11/18/2009
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I'm going to suggest two other categories: a) short stories and b) letters.

                                                       Rose

Date Posted: 10/23/2011 7:11 PM ET
Member Since: 5/31/2009
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What do you mean by noir?  By people of African descent?  People of color might be better, as I interpret it.  And, what is buldungsroman? 

 

Date Posted: 10/23/2011 7:34 PM ET
Member Since: 6/19/2007
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Noir would be a mystery that particularly emphasizes cynical attitudes and sexual motivations, utilizes a stylized urban setting and blurs the line between hero and villain.  My favorite noir authors are Raymond Chandler (the Philip Marlowe mysteries) and Patricia Highsmith (The Ripley novels, Strangers on a Train).

Bildungsroman is a genre which focuses on the psychological and moral growth of the protagonist from youth to adulthood like Candide, The Sorrows of Young Wether, David Copperfield, Mansfield Park, Jane Eyre, A Tree Grows in Brooklyn, Black Boy, Of Human Bondage, The Picture of Dorian Gray, and lots of others.



Last Edited on: 10/23/11 7:41 PM ET - Total times edited: 2
Date Posted: 10/23/2011 9:26 PM ET
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Rose,

Can you give some examples for the letters category?

Date Posted: 10/23/2011 9:59 PM ET
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I'm guessing letters would be an epistolary novel; written primarily as letters from one character to another like Dangerous Liaisons, Dracula or The Screwtape Letters.

Date Posted: 10/23/2011 11:29 PM ET
Member Since: 5/4/2009
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I like the idea of adding a short story &/or letters category, and also a classic sci/fi~fantasy category. The only one I'm iffy on is the book that changed your world. Personally, I'd like use the challenge to experience/read new things, not revisit books I've read before. That being said, I'll definitely do it if everyone else wants the category included.

Date Posted: 10/24/2011 8:15 AM ET
Member Since: 5/15/2010
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I've been trying to find examples of books over 1,000 pages and I am not having much luck. Even books that I *thought* might be as long as 1,000 pages (ex: Don Quixote) seem to be coming in under 1,000.

Can anyone suggest some titles?

 

Janet



Last Edited on: 10/24/11 8:16 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 10/24/2011 11:31 AM ET
Member Since: 11/18/2009
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Actually, I was thinking about books of letters written by particular authors: the letters of Charlotte Bronte, for instance, or those of Wilkie Collins.

 As for the 1000+ category, maybe we could entitle it something like massive tomes, meaning it has to be around 700 pages or so.

                                                                                                                                 Rose

Date Posted: 10/24/2011 12:06 PM ET
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Oops guess I was wrong. I've never seen books of authors' personal letters, can anyone recommend some?
Date Posted: 10/24/2011 5:52 PM ET
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Here's some authors whose letters have been collected in books: Jane Austen, Charlotte Bronte, Charles Dickens, Charles & Mary Lamb, Laura Ingalls Wilder, Rainer Maria Rilke, Rifka, Eudora Welty, Evelyn Waugh, Anais Nin, Henry Miller, Isek Dinesen, and Anne Morrow Lindbergh. There are, of course, many others.

                                                                                                                             Rose

Date Posted: 10/24/2011 7:15 PM ET
Member Since: 3/27/2009
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Janet

Re: 1000 page book.

I'll be reading Gone with the Windsmiley as I've heard it's not that melodramatic, bodice ripping, fainting spell pablum that I always thought it to be. Apparently it's serious literature.

There is always, of course, War and Peacesad

Date Posted: 10/24/2011 7:17 PM ET
Member Since: 3/27/2009
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But are books that are a collections of an author's letters classic books in and of themselves?

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