What is my project and what do I define as a classical book?

 

My project with this blog is to talk about and share the classical books that aren’t as big as Jane Eyre and Romeo and Juliet. By this I don’t mean the obscure books that where only printed in 12 copies and distributed in an alleyway in Vietnam (though if you know about a book like that, please let me know, that sounds like fun). These are books that you will most likely find in a library in the larger western cities at least, but for one reason or another are not so known. I will talk about both writers, like Anne Brontë (the forgotten Brontë sister) and books by famous authors that aren’t as known, like Love’s Labour’s Lost and Lady Susan (by William Shakespeare and Jane Austen respectfully).

 

I have defined a classical book published 60 years ago, which means that in 2014 it is books published before 1954.

 

The reason I choose that number is because while there are clear definitions on what a classical book is, there is no set date when a contemporary book becomes a classical book. 60 years is therefore my definition in context to what my project is. So why 60?

 

In the field of cultural history a generation is defined by 30 years (which means that while some of you are genetically in another generation from your parents, historically you are not). Setting 2×30 as my cut-off date puts me, at a minimum, as the second generation growing up with these books. This is relevant to my project because one of the reasons books like Jane Eyre and Romeo and Juliet are so huge as they are, aren’t just because of the quality, but also about how they have been transferred from one generation to another. These are the books the older generation, either teacher, parents or grand-parents read to you or tell you about. These are the books you were told to read in school. They are huge because they are talked about. Because they are talked about, more people read them. You can’t read books you don’t know of.

I’ve made my booktube (book-youtube) debut. While my reviews will still be on the blog, I will do other things on booktube like explaining how Matilda by Roald Dahl can be read as a call for revolution or how you can read the theme of innocent woman accused of infidelity in Shakespeare.

Link to my bootube channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCh0YxnmFsDjdNW4tAxzzPFA

 

Disclaimers!

 

  1. I am a white, 20-something, woman from northern Europe. What books I have been exposed to, both when it comes to what I consider huge books, but also what books I will talk about on this blog will of course be influenced by this.
  2. The books I talk about are books I think are worthwhile to read, and that I think deserve more recognition. I know not everyone will agree, and that is fine. Please leave a comment discussing why you disagree, I love talking about literature, but be respectful that people also have different tastes and there is nothing wrong with that.
  3. I will, when they are available, post links to gutenberg.org and librivox.org. Gutenberg is a site where books that aren’t copyrighted by American law can be found in different e-reader formats. Librivox are audio books read by volunteers of books that aren’t copyrighted by American law. Please check your own countries copyright-law before using.

 

If you have any tips to books you would like to see get more recognition, please leave a comment or send me an email at lesserknowngems@hotmail.com

 

Happy reading, Marcelle

5 thoughts on “What is my project and what do I define as a classical book?

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  1. Anne Bronte is my favorite, though I’ve said absolutely nothing brilliant about her. I especially love Agnes Grey. It’s a less refined work than Tenant, but (I believe) a valuable and courageous one.

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    1. And I find a better introduction to that style a writing than any other Brontë book. I always say to people who aren’t familiar to that style of writing to start with Agnes Grey, as the other books can be a bit much if you aren’t used to and open for it.

      Liked by 1 person

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