Monday, 11 September 2017

Back to the Classics

If  you have had a look at my reading recently, you might notice that there are some plays that have entered into the general reading of novels. I have started a correspondence  university course in literature on-line, with a university in Sweden. I really felt that it was time for me to know more about literature, how to analyse and review. And how fantastic is it not, to be able to study something which you are really interested in. Just for your own sake.

The very first task was to read A Doll's House by Henrik Ibsen and King Oedipus by Sofokles. That is, to see how a tragedy and drama are built up. As the saying goes; "It goes back to the Greeks", Aristotle in this case. His Poetics set the scene what a play should contain and how it should be performed.

I dreaded a little bit reading King Oedipus, but I must say it was not that bad. I rather enjoyed it. It still has an exciting story, it is built up to slowly give the listener the fact and than at the end, the dreadful truth.

I feel I should have read A Doll's House long ago. After all, it is written by one of the most famous Norwegian author. I really loved the play. Nora's actions in the end of the play is like a fresh wind, and I can imagine the uproar it made at the time. It was written in 1879.  He was, at the time, considered a voice in the strife for women's rights. However, in a speech he gave to the Norwegian Association for Women's Rights in 1898, he said he "must disclaim the honour of having consciously worked for the women's rights movement," since he wrote "without any conscious thought of making propaganda." His task he said, have been "the description of humanity". I quite like that view. Reading up on Ibsen, it turns out that the play is based on similar, real time events.

There will be a lot more non-fiction on literature and and many more books to read. So, if you see a total turn in the kind of books I read, you know the answer. This will certainly benefit the Classic Club reads. Hopefully, I will still manage to read my usual set of books.

Are you doing any studies parallell to your ordinary life and blogging?


  1. In the end it is our ability to read the classics as what matters most, increasingly much else seems like practice. Good luck in your class

    1. Thank you Mel. It is nevertheless very interesting and takes you into reading paths you are not used to.