English Class

When I read a book, it is for enjoyment. Enjoyment does not necessarily involve analyzing for literary style, motifs and themes. I’m still trying to figure out the difference between a motif and a theme. It appears they can be intertwined?!

In my Contemporary Lit class, analyzing, picking apart, connecting, diconnecting, and opining are par for the course (pun intended!). I am discovering that I am not really any good at it and it is taking the joy out of the reading.

I am not looking forward to reading Beloved or Fight Club. The former was on Oprah’s book list and being the stinker that I am, I refuse to read anything recommended by Bishop Oprah. Due to class requirements, I shall have to compromise my rule. Sigh.

Some have told me I will enjoy Fight Club. I’m not so sure purely by virtue of the fact that it is about fighting. We shall see. I must, of course, work to remain open minded. When the class has a “staunch atheist”, a liberal prof., and young ‘uns from Gen Y (or whatever) I feel like the lone ranger of conservatism.

I’ll keep ya posted.


6 thoughts on “English Class

  1. I am with you on the Oprah thing, I used to really like her but she’s changed so much in recent years that I too steer clear of most of her selections, unless I find it without knowing she was associated with it! I’m very glad I found your blog (via Mimi)! I can’t wait to see what you think of the books mentioned! Keep us posted!

  2. I am kind of like you regarding the Oprah association… it is sad too– it is kind of like there might have been a book I would have been interested in… but once it gets it’s Oprah association I don’t want to be associated with it.

    Maybe it is kind of like have a band you like… but then they get popular and they are not quite as fun as they were previously.

  3. Sort of like high-school reading — BOR-ing, but necessary. Never heard of either of these, but I recall having to read books by Susan Faludi (known in this house as “Suzie the Floozie”) for a “lit” class. Is critical thinking encouraged in your class? It was a lifesaver for me.

    Good luck!

  4. I have to admit that I like the Fight Club movie… the TV version. It is pretty raunchy and rough around the edges, but if you don’t know the plot it might surprise you.

    I also try to steer clear of those Oprah books. I remember in college, I started reading one and was completely disgusted by the gritty details about a woman’s sexual life. I don’t know how this could be a book that she would recommend for all to read. It shocked me.

    I hope that you will be able to enjoy them. Keep your expectations low. I find that helps sometimes.

  5. I have to admit, I have had some of my favorite books chosen by Oprah for her book club, I figure I found them first. Make that assumption about Beloved. I hear good things.

    Anyway, I askeered to read Fight Club. You are braver than me!

  6. Ok. Pretend that you’re redecorating your bathroom. You’ve chosen a nautical theme. Your color choices, textures, assessories etc. all support your theme. You might have repeating pattern, like sea shells. That’s your motif. Now pretend that you can apply these definitions to a novel because I never have been able to. You’re right that they entertwine, a motif is part of the theme but not all of it.

    Think of reading books you don’t like as character building, as in, “whatever doesn’t kill you makes you stronger.”

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