Friday, September 9

Reading English


The question of reading preferences has been circulating on some of my favourite blogs recently. My bedside table is spilling over with books-on-the-go, thanks to Uni starting up again.

Yes, there is a definite theme going on here. Can you guess? 'The One Day of the Year' is a play about one Australian family's experience (and differing opinions) of Anzac Day in the 50's, and 'Regeneration' is set in the Craiglockhart War Hospital during the First World War. I was a little concerned about having to read these two, given the topic of war generally evokes distressing imagery and focuses on the horrors of bodily trauma from brutal war experiences. And let's face it, I cannot seem to manage sitting through an episode of RPA without near-fainting. However, these are compelling and controversial reads, and I can't put them down.

And the others - well, any excuse to read Peter Carey is fine with me and I'll soon have the opportunity to read 'True History of the Kelly Gang', with the added benefit of analyzing it with my online-classmates.

And finally, we come to Shakespeare. Nervous, am I? Yes. Thou art. 

I'm also excited: this one is set in the classical Trojan War, albeit with two characters I had never heard of: Troilus and Cressida. That is until recently - I was watching a TV adaption of Austen's 'Mansfield Park' just last week, and (the sleazy and ill intentioned) Mr. Crawford was attempting to woo Fanny Price with a reading of none other than Troilus and Cressida, of whom he claimed were his favourite of all literary characters. And I will be interested to know why they are his favourites. 

Sychronicity? Yes, thine be true*. You can see that my bookmark shows how far I have progressed - I've just reached the end of the 'General Introduction'. And there is more than just one introduction. 

If you haven't picked it yet, the theme of the English unit I am studying is Love and War, and spans a massive time line. There is also a bunch of poetry from different periods, ranging from middle english Chaucer ('The Book of the Duchess' - I love the title alone) to more recent war poetry. And I believe we will be watching Sleepy Hollow (yay! film! Johnny Depp!) just to mix things up a bit. Although, I wonder how Ichabod Crane fits in with the rest of the material.

*for all those Shakespearean buffs who are cringing at my misuse of SP phrasing, sorry about that. Let's hope by the end of this study period I will know what I am talking about.

2 comments:

hila said...

oh happy reading! don't be nervous, all reading is good, even the long, frustrating, difficult and mind-boggling type. Hope you enjoy your units.

Jen said...

Thanks Hila ... so true!