Friday, November 25, 2005

What Happened to the Classics?

I was just recently searching the Internet for a high school reading list, and I was very surprised by what I found.

Back story-

When I was in high school I was in AP English (college bound), and we had to read a different set of books than was normally required of high school students. I missed out on a lot of the "classics" that everyone else was reading. Now don't get me wrong, I am glad I took AP English, it did give me a foot up in college (actually made it so I didn't have to do placement tests), and we read some awesome books that I probably would have otherwise not been aware of. However, I have always had in the back of my mind that there were a ton of books that I "should" read as well and didn't. In fact at one point, I had a list of them (I think there were 100) that seemed like a good place to start.

Anyhow, I don't know where that list is these days, and for a while, I had a lot of other things (college, work, marriage) on my plate to so getting to that high school reading list was not on top of my "To Do" list. At one point a few years ago, I started picking up paperback copies of the "classics" that I hadn't read at Goodwill for 25 cents or so. I didn't have a list to go off of but I knew of some main ones that I hadn't read that everyone else had. Of course, I always have way more books in my house than I have time to read, but I will get to them eventually, I swear I will.

Back to today-

So in my search to find a list that I could go off of, I put in the typical search terms to Google...high school, reading list, recommend...and the lists I got were so foreign to me. No more Dickens, Shakespeare, Steinbeck, Thoreau....these lists consist of books that are current (and have mostly been made into movies). Not that any of them were bad books, many of them are ones that I have read, I was just surprised that only one out of the 10 lists I looked at even considered any "classics" and that section was pretty short.

Am I getting old or what?


Ha Ha said...

Guess what? Ha Ha still has your book list (if I can find out where I put it. Would you like a copy? I used to take the Nobel and Pulitzer prize winners for Literature and use those lists for reading.

Mishka said...

Deinfitely would like a copy....looks like comments are working for you again.