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Great books-chronologically or by genre?


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I have read through both WTM and WEM now, and I'd like to go through the great books list for self-education (all the ones I haven't read yet.)

 

I'm not sure whether to read them chronologically, well-trained mind style (grades 9-12 great books list) , or by genre (history, fiction, poetry) well-educated mind style. Honestly I think the chronological list appeals more to my scatter-brained mind, plus I wouldn't have to read all poems or works of fiction at once.

 

Is there a reason I should read them one way or the other? Please fill me in.

 

Thanks!

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I assumed that SWB put them in order by genre in TWEM because that way she could order the genres by level of difficulty. You get to practice on novels first (easier and more appealing to read) before you get to the more difficult genres. She gets to begin her list with something fun, light novel, not an intimidating hard-sounding classic.

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I tend to read chronologically, even though I was a literature major in college (I think I was really meant to be a history major, but it's a long story...) In any case, I might try to do a bit of both--along the lines of "the history of the novel," starting with something like Robinson Crusoe, maybe, or something by Fielding, and ending up with something in the 20th century (Hemingway, for example...)

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I like to read chronologically so I can immerse myself in the 'voice' of the period, rather than trying to understand a different historical period every time I start a new book, if that makes sense. Or at least, read works from the same period together. I also find that too much of certain genres all at the same time (in my case, drama) can be a little tiring.

 

Anne

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Except the first novel is Don Quiote, isn't it? BOORRRINNNG! lol
Oh I love Don Quixote.

 

I tend not to schedule my books, so my reading is all over the place. In the past few months I've devoured a number of Pearl S. Buck novels and have worked my way on an accidentally chronological (but less than comprehensive) survey of 19th Century British literature, starting with Thomas Love Peacock. I don't want to feel I'm checking off books because there's are right and wrong things to read or a right way to go about it. There has to be joy, or what's the point?

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