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Newsweek's list of the 100 best books ever

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  • kuha
    replied
    By the way, this whole discussion reminds me of a book I really enjoyed when it first came out: David Denby's "Great Books" (1996)--a really thoughtful and engaging account of his own project to (re)read the key works of the Western canon.

    Leave a comment:


  • tandfman
    replied
    Or Gilgamesh.

    Leave a comment:


  • gh
    replied
    Originally posted by scottmitchell74
    I think the list strikes a nice balance. Most (if not all) genres are represented. I've read 11 of those. My interests lie more in the Fantasy and Sci-Fi realm, and even those were mentioned in the list.

    Not a bad list at all.

    Lord Of The Rings (arguably the Fantasy godfather)...
    Nobody worships LOTR more than I (close to 60 readings in the last 45 years), but Tolkien borrowed mightily from Wagner's Ring Cycle, and Wagner was inspired by the Nibelungenlied. And Tolkien was also inspired by the Kalevala (elvish is modeled on Finnish).

    (and who knows where Beowulf fits in that lineage!).

    Leave a comment:


  • lonewolf
    replied
    Originally posted by Daisy
    Originally posted by catson52
    overpaying themselves
    This factor cannot be underestimated with regards to why they are singled out. And apparently they are still oblivious to this.
    It mystifies me how those who so massively missmanage business can conscientiously or legally reward themselves and each other so bountifully. They argue that it is in their employment contract, ingnoring the obvious they are all sitting on each other's boards approving those contracts. :cry: :x :evil: :twisted:

    Leave a comment:


  • Daisy
    replied
    Originally posted by catson52
    overpaying themselves
    This factor cannot be underestimated with regards to why they are singled out. And apparently they are still oblivious to this.

    Leave a comment:


  • catson52
    replied
    Originally posted by K.I.R.
    Originally posted by catson52
    An interesting point. As far as I can figure out The Great Gatsby has been on the "must" reading list at most schools for many years. (I know at least 20 years and guess it is much more). So what did the greedy boys of today and yesterday grow up reading and did they learn anything from it? What about Ken Lay, Madoff, Sanford and Co.? Just reading stuff does nothing for you. Another American master, O'Henry is much shunned nowadays. He outlined the basics of con artists pretty well particularly with his Jeff Peters and Andy Tucker stories. Plus ca change, plus c'est la meme chose. May as well add O'Henry to the "must" reading list. And why not add Leonardo da Vinci to the reading list - "he who would be rich in a day, will hang in a year".
    I know it's all the rage to have a go at the financial sector, but what I was talking about has permeated much more thoroughly than just Wall Street.
    In full agreement with you on this. However, the brianics in the financial sector/industry need special attention, overpaying themselves and ruining countless lives. A series of recent articles in The New Yorker make VERY interesting reading. But there are enough brickbats available, in my opinion, for many other segments of current culture/society.

    Leave a comment:


  • Daisy
    replied
    Originally posted by K.I.R.
    became nauseous.
    I was wondering about those choices too. And only one?

    Leave a comment:


  • K.I.R.
    replied
    Originally posted by Marlow
    Speaking of which, is Biden an AA-type or a teetotaler? He was the only one at the meeting NOT drinking alcohol.
    Perhaps he saw the horse piss everyone else was drinking (Bud Light, Blue Moon, Red Stripe) and became nauseous.

    Leave a comment:


  • Marlow
    replied
    Originally posted by tandfman
    Originally posted by Marlow
    Uncle! Sorry! ops: OK, OK, OK!
    OK. Shall we meet at the White House for a beer?
    Root!

    Speaking of which, is Biden an AA-type or a teetotaler? He was the only one at the meeting NOT drinking alcohol.

    Leave a comment:


  • tandfman
    replied
    Originally posted by Marlow
    Uncle! Sorry! ops: OK, OK, OK!
    OK. Shall we meet at the White House for a beer?

    Leave a comment:


  • Marlow
    replied
    Originally posted by tandfman
    . . . [this is the part where tandfman takes Marlow out back behind the woodshed and beats his fanny raw] . . .
    Uncle! Sorry! ops: OK, OK, OK!
    Man, this intraweb posting thing is a BEAR sometimes!

    In response to a post above about what this list represents. I posted 20 titles that are the 'best' books I've ever read. That is not synonymous with the most 'enjoyable'. The most enjoyable book I ever read was The DaVinci Code. I literally could not put it down and finished it all in one night. I had never done that before (or since, even with Angels & Demons) But DC is not a GREAT book; it's just great fun. A hot fudge sundae is my favorite 'food', but it's not a dinner entrée.

    Leave a comment:


  • kuha
    replied
    Originally posted by gh
    As one who works with the language (and others), and had a more-than-solid grounding in the classics in high school I gotta say that most of the books on these lists are pretentious to the point of being unreadable. (Mr. Michelin 3-star prefers Big Macs?)
    I really don't think "pretentious" is at all the right word here. This is a list-of-lists, compiled from the recommendations of a fairly wide variety of interested & knowledgeable people. Nothing wrong with that, and nothing wrong with us critiquing the selection. (One of my all-time favorites, "Let Us Now Praise Famous Men" isn't here.) But, it's hard for me to accept that a list including Chandler and Hammett (not to mention Winnie the Pooh!!!) is overly elitist. Further, this list clearly includes books that experts feel we "should" read--in order to have a better grasp on the history of (mostly) Western thought...a sentiment that's hard to disagree with.

    The point, obviously, is to try to balance the intrinsic "worth" of a book--the beauty of its structure, the depth and universality of its ideas, and the quality of its literary craftsmanship--with it's longevity, it's ability to appeal to readers beyond the moment of its creation. By definition, that's what important (as opposed to "popular") art is all about.

    And, finally, I think we too-easily dismiss some degree of "difficulty" as proof that a book isn't worth our time. From my experience (so far), it seems that just about everything of quality carries some very real degree of difficulty (in the achievement, if nothing else, but also in the appreciation)...and that (often) we end up broader and richer for the experience of having grappled with that difficulty.

    But, then, maybe that's too simplistic...... :lol:

    Leave a comment:


  • tandfman
    replied
    Originally posted by Marlow
    Originally posted by bad hammy
    Originally posted by Marlow
    As a TOE, I talk with people about intellectual pursuits far more than the average two-bit . . . I mean 2 cent . . . internet poster. :P
    Your recent streak of obnoxious arrogance has not left the building, obviously . . .
    reread it, dear hammy - not speaking to YOU! :roll:
    No, you were speaking to 2 cents, and I'm not really concerned by what bad hammy sees as obnoxious arrogance. (Hell, what would a message board be without a bit of obnoxious arrogance? )

    I'm more troubled by a much greater failing for a TOE--an apparent deficiency in your critical reading skills. What 2 cents had said that provoked your response was:

    Interpersonal relationships are the most important venture in human experience...this coming from a man who appears to spend a fair portion of his life in front of a computer screen....you're killing me, Marlow.... :lol:
    First, note the smiley. He was kidding. He was humorously suggesting a possible disconnect between your feelings about interpersonal relationships and your omnipresence here as a poster. Note, too, that he referred to interpersonal relationships, not intellectual relationships. Do you equate talking to people about intellectual pusuits with interpersonal relationships? If so, I feel sorry for you and even sorrier for your friends and family. If not, then I'll stand by my observation that you misread the post that you responded to.

    (And yes, I did notice the emoticon in your post, too. But IMHO it was the wrong emoticon to indicate that you were kidding, and even if you were kidding, what you said was not responsive to what he said.)

    Leave a comment:


  • Friar
    replied
    think most Americans of today might as well be characters in The Great Gatsby.
    I don't have Jay's cash, but I do live in West Egg and spend alot of time staring at East Egg.
    have a positive opinion about Herman Wouk's " The Winds of War" ? "
    "There's nothing left to do but win the war" (Pug) is one of my fav literary sentences.

    Leave a comment:


  • K.I.R.
    replied
    Originally posted by catson52
    An interesting point. As far as I can figure out The Great Gatsby has been on the "must" reading list at most schools for many years. (I know at least 20 years and guess it is much more). So what did the greedy boys of today and yesterday grow up reading and did they learn anything from it? What about Ken Lay, Madoff, Sanford and Co.? Just reading stuff does nothing for you. Another American master, O'Henry is much shunned nowadays. He outlined the basics of con artists pretty well particularly with his Jeff Peters and Andy Tucker stories. Plus ca change, plus c'est la meme chose. May as well add O'Henry to the "must" reading list. And why not add Leonardo da Vinci to the reading list - "he who would be rich in a day, will hang in a year".
    I know it's all the rage to have a go at the financial sector, but what I was talking about has permeated much more thoroughly than just Wall Street.

    Leave a comment:

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