A few months ago I decided to finally read War and Peace. I felt rather bad for being so behind on my classic literature reading list and I had a huge craving for Russian literature (the way I do every now and then) with all the fighting and failed attempts at romance, and maybe some soulless but good looking bastards on top of that. Turns out though – no one is printing War and Peace in Polish anymore. I mean no one. No-one.
This led me to many more-or-less witty observations, mostly on the state of the Polish publishing business and what a horrible place it must be…But more than that it made me wonder – why don’t we read classics anymore? Are they really so unpopular that if they don’t make the cut onto some schools’ reading lists, they have no place in our society? But they have so much to offer!
So here I am, on a follow-up to my, surprisingly popular, post on reading philosophers – and the other one on reading poetic prose. Poetry is probably the next in line; but for today, I have just one question: Why should we read classics?
(Disclaimer: By classics I do mean what we often refer to as classic literature, antiquity included. It seems as if the English language does not want to cooperate with me today in finding a better term. Sorry.)
By the way – don’t worry, buns, after much drama I did get myself my own War and Peace. Printed in 1979 but it truly does look like I may be its first reader. [Read more…]