Reading for prose ignores the fact that literature is fundamentally a storytelling medium, and if you honestly believe that the prose is more interesting than the story something has gone wrong in your education or upbringing.
JK Rowling and her ilk are written for a population of mentally-deficient retards, whereas writers like Joyce are the true literary paradigms who deserve attention and respect. There, there's my contrarian opinion.
>>7584692 you losers are all just posers read a god damned non-meme book you fags y'all just wanna get the cred without wanting the knowledge in your heads AND desu you're all not very bright in the first place go back to watching anime if all you want to do is pretend and stay close-minded
>>7584692 The Greeks are actually really not worth the effort of reading past a few of them (mostly Plato and Aristobabe). Start with the Germans, seriously. Don't waste time, not if you have been thinking for yourself for a while already.
>>7586841 Most people will agree on mockingbird, but the only reason people dislike GR is that they view it as a literary train wreck written by a lunatic, when in reality Pynchon is recreating the chaos of WWII for us through his genius.
>>7587014 You are either very old or very young. With access to the internet, the era of television is already dead and people are developing a greater appreciation for literature. We can finally analyze the post-modernist era as a whole; in the twentieth century literary memes were non-existent. Being engaged with literature is almost fashionable in contemporary society, considering the fame Franzen and Lin have received for years.
>>7587066 it stems from having reread moby dick and trying to talk about it with people where the conversation usually ended at the common criticism of the 'overwinded whaling chapters'
in literary terms i guess it'd be that the whaling stuff is the apex casual filter of lit alongside Shakespearean language but idk if that's very contrarian and we're all merely airing laundry otherwise
>>7584706 You. I like you. >>7584692 I find it hard to just pick up books to read because a lot of them turn into cultural or philosophical posturing and ruin everything before them. I know I'm a coward for it, but it's a pain for me to get over, and I find it hard to take book suggestions seriously as a result.
>>7584692 Infinite Jest isn't super well-written. Much like Soundtracks for the Blind or one of those indie animated films done by one person, its attention comes from the effort put in by the creator rather than any legitimate quality
Ulysses didn't need to be as long as it is
The Picture of Dorian Gray isn't "one of the greats"
Harold Bloom is generally right, but likely has some form of autism
>>7587951 >It doesn't matter if your story about rats shitting is written with virtuosic and beautiful or otherwise profound wordplay, it's still a story about rats shitting. It's like you've never even read poetry.
>>7587327 I realised after several failed attempts to recommend classics to friends who read this stuff that it's a mistake to judge genre fic by the same rubric as belles lettres. Though they may both be words on paper, they're fairly unrelated in terms of the needs they're fulfilling. Genre fiction's actual peers are sappy rom-coms, pornography, video games, and the like--that is to say, it's just one cheap thrill among many cheap thrills, none of which are even feigning at artistry, their main purpose instead being merely to entertain the bored, exhausted, or possibly retarded. And so I think when compared to these other mind-numbers, while genre fic is certainly not made 'respectable', it's not terrible either.
>>7588055 I think the discriminating factor is whether Genre fic readers are aware of what they're missing. There's nothing wrong with distraction for its own sake (if you're in a state deserving distraction anyway - if you're exhausted after a long day or too depressed to think, for example). It may be error to assume proper lit should be judged by the same standards as genre fic, but surely that relation should be symmetric.
>>7587023 Yep i agree with this one and have been so damn disappointed by his subsequent works.. He showed so much potential in that novel but got so afraid by DFW's meme'n that he now refuses to try experimenting or even attempting to make something great. His dialogue and character's chemistry are undeniably realistic, but he's stuck playing DFW's emotionally mature friend who won't succumb to actually making something interesting.. which does require crawling up your asshole to some extent
>>7588055 It's a fallacy to assume that traditional literary value is the only valid kind of value in human creative output. Regardless, though, there's a strong distinction between pre-d&d 'genre' and genre books written in its wake. Stuff like The Glass Bead Game and Blood Meridian and Book of the New Sun inherit tropes from their predecessors just like everything else in literature, but they use 'genre' as an aesthetic choice. Conversely, Mistborn and Hyperion and 50 Shades of Grey are products sold to an audience based on a totally codified set of creative standards, rather than tools in the realisation of artistic aims.
>>7585076 >previously gone to the novelists Saul Bellow and Phillip Roth and to playwright Arthur Miller. Know what these guys and Bloom have in common? I like Bloom, but fuck's sake, he isn't even trying to hide it.
>>7588694 Yes you do. I see that you are trying to quite masterfully reveal me as a disgusting human being. The fact remains that he is biased towards them. I have no problems with that noble group of people, but his efforts are pretty transparent desu.
>>7588150 I largely agree with you but I think that for a genre fic Mistborn actually did read for something greater. It failed to grasp it but, particularly in the third book, there were attempts to make greater statements about religion, spirituality, godhood that had some level of insight. The ending of the series is legitimately thought-provoking for what is essentially YA genre lit.
>>7587166 >Oedipus Rex is the greatest piece of literature ever written Shit taste Even Philoctetes is better Although I recognize that the line "Ὦ τέkνα, ποῦ ποτ´ ἐστέ;" has to be one of my favorite ancient quotation
>>7584706 >and if you honestly believe that the prose is more interesting than the story
What? Are you speaking universally? I don't see how that makes sense. What if a novel has great prose but a cliche-ridden, uninteresting story? Is it not in your opinion legitimate to factor that into your evaluation of the novel or are you saying if the storytelling is bad then the novel is bad full stop?
>>7591862 Capitalistic mindset. Casual readers don't care about the author's atmosphere or vision. They only want to be entertained and to get personal takeaways from what they're reading. It's pure narcissism.
>>7584692 Post-modernism is a garbage, fake movement made entirely to hide a lack of technical merit. It uses overly complex form for no other purpose than to gain an artificial high ground by saying, this is true art and you are simply to lowly to understand it in it's entirety and complexity, when in reality it is as I state in the previous argument, a sham. Post-modernists are shams and not worth reading, noting, or even making mention of in any serious literary discussion.
>>7588737 You realize that Roth puts Jews in the absolute possible worst light. If you think his portrayal Mickey Sabbath has anything to do furthering any Jewish cause you have not read anything he has done.
Seriously, I would say Roth has done more damage to the image of the Jewish people in America than any modern author. If anything his portrayals are almost /pol/ish
>>7584692 The serious literature of the past 50 years is more analogous to avant-garde popular music than art music, and avant-garde popular music is much more thematically and emotionally fertile than art music.
There's no inherent distinction between 'genre' literature and real literature, in that genres are really just sets of inherited aesthetic choices. (which happens in all literature) However, the overwhelming majority of 'genre' books are commercial products marketed to an audience.
With /lit/ rattling out '>>>/reddit/' on a hair trigger these past few months I'm fucking disgusted that shit like...
>You. I like you.
...farts by completely unchallenged. This anon is *literally* spewing stock reddit humour - whenever I read that 'I like you'/'you sir are a scholar and a gentleman!'/'nailed it!' bullshit I develop another stress tumor in my stomach lining.
*Finnegans Wake is Joyce's masterpiece, and thus the masterpiece of the 20th Century. *Virgil is at least the equal of Homer. *Howl is actually a good poem. *Modernism and New Criticism have had an awful influence on literature.
>>7588717 Dubliners and Portrait were actually very coherent. This is a post written by somebody who has heard of the reputation for Ulysses and Finnegans Wake but hasn't actually read anything by Joyce. Embarrassing that your kind are allowed here.
>>7585076 >reading teleologically, picking your books carefully so that they will "lead you in the right direction" >treating reading as if it was some video game >literary quality is determined by universal, objective qualities, yet we must be trained in order to fully appreciate these qualities Bloom confirmed for pleb.
>>7588705 Can you explain this in more detail? I feel like literary fiction over religious and philosophical writing isn't required to convey ideas or principles, and can be more free to just exist for aesthetic purposes or imagination.
>>7584706 >storytelling medium But this could mean many different things. The way that words are used and juxtaposed can have a deep impact in the way that the story is conveyed. Plot is not the only element of telling a story, and if it was Books would be written like narrative recipes. >something has gone wrong in your education or upbringing. Somehow this is actually the most snobbish thing I've heard on /lit/ and I don't know how that is possible. At least, second after this comment >>7584720
>>7587951 How was the narrative in The Sun Also Rises weak? I thought it was terrific. You do realize there was much more going on in any given scene than what was literally written on the page, right? E.g. the bullfights were about more than just bullfights, and the guys fishing was about more than just two dudes bagging some trout.
>>7596613 I'm torn on this. I enjoyed it and thought it had some pretty unnerving sequences, but the more I think about the book after reading it, the more I realise how paper-thin the characters are and that it doesn't really have much to go on other than the character sees some weird shit.
I'll re-read it a few years down the line and I'd recommend it if people were looking for easily accessible weird fiction, but I couldn't say it was one of my favourites within that genre.
>>7584692 The following is an incomplete list of terribly overrated authors (not including ones /lit/ likes to shit on because they're popular with plebs, like Camus and Hemmingway):
Virgil Pope Blake (muh mysticism) Wordsworth Dickens Memestoevsky TS Eliot (aka the "I don't like poetry" favorite) DFW Basically every single western philosopher who ever lived, especially fools like Plato and Nietzsche
>>7598028 Thinkers in India recognised the futility of Being almost 3000 years ago. In the West we ended up with nihilistic scientific rationalism and its opposing "muh happy dappy Live Forever Personal Jesus" shit
>>7598018 >Virgil This guy is shit that is only remembered because he had a fucking emperor backing his propaganda swill, and because for a few hundred years Latin was essential to intellect life in Europe and Virgil was one of the only halfway decent authors who wrote in the shitty language they had to learn.
>>7584692 Joyce is a hack. He's a perfect intersection of pretentious, opaque prose and simplistic subject matter. Nobody reads Joyce because he makes them think or feel, the read Joyce because they think it makes them refined and intelligent
There are 3 main things in literature, and you can produce a book that is worth reading if you only achieve one of the 3. If you achieve all of them your work is sure a masterpiece.
a) An interesting history, a compelling plot (Breaking Bad was almost destined for success when we consider how great the embryonic idea of the show was);
b) Great characters, characters that are memorable and that will live forever in the minds of the readers;
c) A sublime language: the working of the written word with so much beauty that the work can stand alone only because of its verbal texture (a lot of poetry falls on this category).
I would also like to say dialogue, but I guess that it is a thing that is divided between points b) and c).
It’s no wonder that Shakespeare is so famous and respected: he can hit the spot in all categories. But many justly famous books lack points in some of these tree categories (Dostoevsky and Hemingway are examples).
As for movies, many of them fail in points b) and c). Star wars, for example, is a bore when you realize how weak the language of its dialogues are and how cliché and empty are its characters.
>>7592054 I know it's pedantic to say, but that statement isn't really an opinion. Assuming you are telling the truth, "I like X" is a factual observation about your opinion, and cannot easily be disputed. "X is good" is an opinion.
>>7599613 I see some merit in your approach to literature, but I don't think it's fair to judge film by the standards of another medium.
The Star Wars series provides an excellent example. Though many have argued that its scripts do not repeat clichés so much as they reinvigorate classic archetypes, I will concede that the series did not succeed or win respect on the merits of its writing. Instead, it draws strength from charismatic acting, a majestic score, and imaginative, well-executed visuals. All of these represent important elements of cinema, yet your standards for written works exclude them entirely.
>>7584706 This is completely true. Seeing literature as pure prose should be punishable, and is this board's main flaw. Poetry can neither be reduced to wordplay and prosody. No author's genuis is entirely expressed through prose. Except Nabokov's. But he's a hack
>The main characters are interesting and the narrator is one of the best characters in all of literature; >The book is immensely funny, one of the funniest I have ever read (Nabokov is greater in comedy than most stand up faggots of today); >Nabokov had the courage to swim against the current and use a greatly poetical and metaphorical language in an age where you either wrote a bone-dry and extremely simplistic prose (like Hemingway) or that pseudo poetical prose of the beatniks and other mediocrities; >The novel fuses very realistic passages with phrases of Shakespearean poetic beauty; >The work has transcended the literary world and became a major world icon.
And then you said this is a bad book? Really, you don’t know what good art is (most likely you started your reading life with Dostoyevsky and is mad with Nabokov for his low opinion about the older Russian writer, who, btw, is really inferior to Tolstoy in every way).
Nabokov is great as a novelist when it comes to the weird ideas he had for his novels. They aren't intellectually interesting, but they're fun. Academia has essentially turned a very fun novelist into a postmodern breadwinner postmortum.
He didn't have "much to say", though, sure. But he's a very fun novelist, especially to teenagers and young adults.
>>7599613 >(Dostoevsky and Hemingway are examples). Where would you say they're lacking? Prose? I could see that argument for Hemingway, since he's famous for blunt sentences and all, but it's still not possible to judge that objectively.
> John Milton was one of the blandest poets in the history of English literature, and destroyed the concept of Poetry for over a century > There will never be a literary movement again as great as the English renaissance nor the Modernist renaissance. People don't read enough or care enough about good books anymore for this to be the case. > Most "experimental" poets and novelists of the 20th century took the easiest possibly route to the canon, and once we get over our obsession of formal innovation, we're going to forget them: Charles Olson, William Carlos Williams, later Nabokov novels, most of the french nouveaux romans, all of the New York School except for Ashbery, all of the Beats, all of the San Francisco Renaissance, John Cage, Morton Feldman, basically anyone like this. They will be irrelevant later in the 21st century, and forgotten by the 22nd. > There are no living poets in the public eye that will be considered "major canonical poets" historically. > DeLillo will make the canon, even though I don't like him. > McCarthy will be forgotten in half a century. > Pynchon will only be remembered for Crying of Lot 49. > The best literature of the 21st century will be in Spanish and Chinese. American Literature is beyond saving. Americans no longer have the drive to do anything worthy of the canon. > Postmodernism will be renamed "the lost era" in 100 years, because it'll be seen as an age of charlatans. Novelists of the era like Marquez will survive and most of the novelists you guys like will be totally forgotten, except for Nabokov. Borges will be remembered. Most others won't. > Videogames will never be literature or be artistic in any way. Film is already more successful and important than Theatre, and will remain the most important art form through the 21st. > We will see a huge revival of Emersonian romanticism in the 21st century, except all over the world. America will not participate in this, and will decay because of it. > We will have another Shakespeare.
>>7592460 >>7592791 Soz bros but trying to stay interested in Demons after 200 pages of dreadful character interactions, needless descriptions and 70 odd pages of introducing two characters that could be halved only for their fucking children (equally as vapid creations) to be the centre piece.
It is a dreadful novel that is far too long for what it is trying to be.
Have read Notes and The Double which were alright though.
Also Celine's Journey To The End of the Night is too long and needlessly descriptive yet is heartfelt and brilliant when on point.
well he's lumped in there with others who don't fit the mold like Beckett and Nabokov.
Oh, and Beckett will be likely seen as the most important writer of the 20th. He will survive more than anyone else. He's more than the Ibsen of the 20th, he's the Tolstoy. He shows why the 20th century for what it is, and what it's done to us. He was entirely right all along, and he's going to be immortal for it.
And DeLillo is going to survive for that reason. I don't consider him more than a more-talented Orwell, but Orwell survived, and DeLillo will survive even more once Orwell is forgotten. I think it's somewhat safe to say that he'll be one of the most contentious and rebellion-inspiring authors of the 21st.
I'm looking forward to the 21st. It is very safe to say we've survived the nihilism of the postwar era. If anything, we're on some sort of super-weird neomodernist slant right now. I don't like that much either, since we're not seeing the talent connected with it like we did with the first one, but maybe it'll go somewhere pleasant.
>>7600392 > he's lumped in there Nah, that's for retards. His cosmovision was def modernist, he happened to be in a period where people don't read their works and just interpret the Wikipedia blurb. idk enough for Nabo or Beckett. Intuitively, I'd say the latter fits the category somewhat more.
>Pynchon will release one more door-stopper before he finally croaks >German literature completely dominated the 20th century >Indian/Pakistani/middle east literature will dominate the 21st century canon. >There has never been a great black novelist >Jose Rizal's novel, "Noli Me Tangere" is the greatest Spanish language novel written since Don Quixote >Bernhard was better than Beckett >Beckett was better than Joyce >The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn is better than Moby Dick >Another great American Author will emerge within the next ten years and have a career as prolific as Faulkner, Mellville, James, Hemmingway >he will be of latin descent
>>7594519 Pls don't conflate them. Grass fully turned around, and I think it took a lot of courage to admit it so close to his death (knowing the effect on his legacy). Heidegger turned from individual dasein to German Volk dasein as soon as he was offered the chair at Freiberg.
>>7600527 I agree... But Grass kinda made it seem like he was essentially a prisoner forced to be a nazi and i'm not sure i totally believe that... He was kinda just going along with everything to ensure personal safety and happiness. Someone like Grass is expected to take a better stand at times like that. It's not fair to expect more out of him than Joe fucking average who became a nazi to preserve his current life in Germany but we do... compare Grass to someone like Bernhard
>>7600563 The problem is kids reading Harry Potter are the kids that will move onto john green and Stephan king, etc in highschool when they should be starting to challenge themselves with Homer, Shakespeare, Dante, Cervantes, etc. And even diving into some early philosophical works.
Here's my contrarian opinion: Harry Potter is not going to melt all earth's children's minds, I know plenty of people who read HP as a child and have never picked up a King book, and even if they had, who fucking cares. A lot of you are quick to dismiss the argument that *anything* that encourages reading is a good thing(specifically when it comes to Rowling it seems). But in a generation that's obsessed with digital media consumption that's exactly what's needed. Not every kid has patrician parents willing to put the time in to turn their kids into little literati cunts; a series of books that kids are interested enough in to queue up for to get a copy, to take on car journeys rather than their ipad or to read at home rather than go on their laptop, is beneficial to a child - it's not the intellectual poison you're all guffawing at each other about. Please try and rinse atleast some of Blooms Jizz out your mouths.
The nauseating pretentiousness surrounding anything Joyce or Faulkner is off-putting but made 10x worse by pretentious "elites" who think (Joyce particularly here) is and will always be the epitome of the written medium
IJ is probably the best book to come out of the last half of the 20th century and DFW is probably the best American writer there is, he was just memed too hard to be recognized as such
>>7600804 Agree on both of these. Maybe it just depends on the person, but I didn't really feel anything reading Joyce except exhausted by having to reread each page over and over and figure out what was going on. IJ had lots of issues but they're totally overshadowed by the complex and real emotions it evokes. I hadn't experienced anything like it since I was a depressed kid escaping my problems with fantasy novels and shit.
I think it just comes down to why someone likes literature. If it's to try and like, parse out each sentence for meaning and references like a puzzle, then I guess I can see why they might like Joyce.
Agreed, my only thing is you don't need the whole 2manyreference4u thing going on for a book to feel thorough and layered. IJ had references, some honestly I didn't get after my first read-through. But whether or not I got those references reading IJ was an experience that stood on it's own and made you feel and spend hours looking through footnotes becaus you WANTED too. Ffs I don't know what other non-academic book I would be willing to play through footnotes about a deceased character's filmography.
Joyce just seems to have this "teehee did you not get that reference?" feel about it.
>>7599905 > Videogames will never be literature or be artistic in any way. Film is already more successful and important than Theatre, and will remain the most important art form through the 21st.
Film is more successful/important than theatre in a commercial sense, so why does that same logic not apply to video games being "successful and important"? Also I can agree about video games as a whole being unliterary, but what how much allowance do you give for exceptional stand-alone works of the medium? I'm no vidya apologist but the way it's phrased now your opinion comes off as edgy rather than valid.
>>7601765 >how much allowance do you give for exceptional stand-alone works of the medium?
not much. Sure, it's POSSIBLE that there might be good experiments in the medium.
But we know gamers -- even the ones who play "art" games -- and we know already that anything complex will go right over their heads. We know game developers -- basically, gamers who can program or draw -- and they don't have complex thoughts, they don't read, they don't watch decent films, they don't study art, etc.
No, even if it becomes "important" in the commercial sense (already is) it's not going to be similar at all to film's success. Film is actually art. It's recorded Theatre. It's certainly art. Video games are a drug.
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