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février 10, 2020

The books I have to read for uni

  • février 10, 2020
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I’m in my fourth year in college now and I’m basically doing another year of literature all over again. For three years, I had English literature courses and this year, plenty of French one. As you may understand, I have to read quite a few books. I thought it could be interesting for some of you to know which books I had and have to read for my literature classes. Little reminder: I’m a French student  (Lettres modernes = literature everywhere), and before that I studied English (LLCER = English speaking literature and civilizations) 

Classics 

Shakespeare, Dickens, Racine, Euripide, Jane Austen, Ronsard, Pascal, Emily Dickinson, Henry James, Rousseau, Sartre… you name it! I won’t say that I loved all of those books, but some of them where good surprises. I used to hate studying deeply a classic because it meant going way too far in the interpretation. But since uni, I kind of like it – sometimes. Great Expectations by Charles Dickens was probably my favorite. Macbeth and Pride and Prejudice were really good ones too. 

When it comes to poetry like Ronsard (Sixteenth century, how old) or Emily Dickinson, well, I did not find them interesting. At all. It’s always too hard to be focused on or to understand. It’s not something I enjoy reading and studying. Everyone’s got their own interpretation, and I don’t always agree with what the teachers expect us to say. 

 


Non-classics 

Atwood, Aubenas, Houellebecq, Ben Marcus: they happened less often, but I had to read non-classic books. At the time, I did not like The Handmaid’s tale (I truly have to give it another go after loving The Testaments to much). It was back in my first year of uni, feminism was not something I was yet too interested in (well, it came right after that) and I was not interested enough to love it as much as it deserved to be. For the other, like Ben Marcus, it was on an “end of the world” class. The teacher was too hard to follow, the class was not structured and the books we had to read were not interesting, that’s why I don’t keep a good memory of it. For Aubenas and Houellebecq, you’ll have to read my January wrap up to find out what I thought of them. 

There, you have an idea of what students like me can read. Not everything is easy and fun to read, especially when you have to talk about it for hours for a whole semester. At least, it gives me the opportunity to read books I won’t normally read and develop my general knowledge in literature.

I'm 23, I've got freckles (you get it now) and I'm a grumpy French, sometimes, who writes in English. I love books, cats, le barbu, pizzas and Dicaprio.

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EVA MARIE
Rennes, France

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