Score
Title
24
Weekly Recommendation Thread for the week of February 23, 2018
9023
Volume 1 of The Legend of The Condor Heroes, "the LOTR of Chinese literature", now available
248
On the joy of finishing books....
21932
Libraries are tossing millions of books to make way for study spaces and coffee shops
44
guilty pleasure reads
10
Let’s play a game again!!!
9
What Is a great book that would make a bad movie, and/or a bad book that would make a great movie?
38
Great series, bad books
13
Just saw Annihilation in theaters. Book to movie adaptations can be either hit or miss. This was both
11
Don't read a book for the sake of reading it, read something you actually enjoy!
4
The Red Pyramid Review
3
What are 20 works of Fiction that everyone should read before age 30 and why?
10
15 Major Award-Winning Novels You've Probably Never Heard Of
3
Leo Tolstoy Makes a List of the 50+ Books That Influenced Him Most (1891)
2
Something I really don't understand about the Dursleys in Harry Potter.
2
Review of White Sand: Volume 2 (by Brandon Sanderson)
3
BBC Radio 4 - Bookclub: Douglas Adams discusses The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy
3
Reviving my love for literature
3
Essays from Zadie Smith's "Feel Free" and Review
3
5 Huge 'Annihilation' Changes from the Jeff VanderMeer Book
26
Finally Reading Harry Potter as a High School Senior...
1
Does anyone know where I can purchase the entire collection of James boswell’s diaries?
10
Catch 22, I can't seem to catch it
1
What do you do when you have a book you are enjoying but don't feel you can read in public?
3
The Talisman by Stephen King (Thoughts?)
1
What's the opening paragraph in chapter one in the book you are currently reading?
373
To people who underline/highlight library books
0
What's Stephen King's obsession with turtles?
5
Just Finished Children of Men
2
'The Future Is Happening Right Now': An Interview With Jeff VanderMeer
1
Game of Thrones: what am I missing by not reading the books?
1
Why conclusions important and what are some good and bad examples of a conclusion to a story?
7
Which character did you like the most - Marie-Laure or Werner from 'All the light we cannot see' ?
4
[Spoilers-ish] In the middle of The Catcher in the Rye, quick -quite stupid- question.
1
Questions about The Demon Lover by Elizabeth Bowen
26
After Annihilation: 10 strange sci-fi books that should be on screen
8
Do you set an upper limit as to how much you read in a day?
3
[Discuss] Jagannath by Karin Tidbeck. Weird af.
3
Wheel of Times, Lord of the rings parallels
9998
Amazon confirm they will be adapting Iain M Banks' Culture series for TV
35
I am obsessed with the Dyatlov Pass Incident after reading Dead Mountain: The Untold True Story of the Dyatlov Pass Incident
13 DareToDasein There's a great philosophy podcast called the Partially Examined Life, they did a two part episode on this book a while ago. They usually do a pretty good deep dive into things. Hope this helps! http://partiallyexaminedlife.com
7 JomesJayce What point did you make of it? If you don't tell your conclusions there is no way to know if you missed the point. Its full of ugly, vile characters (and so is every Dostoyesvky book), and tense situations. The big pciture of the book is the contrast of Michkin's actions in relations to everybody else. This contrast is were the message lies, trying to be good in a world lead by "evil" motivations can only guide you to madness.
6 cannonballrunner Dostoyevsky is notorious for his style of writing, where no character really *speaks* for the author. It's not like Myshkin is the perfect person, and everyone should just be like him. He's very inconsiderate when you think about, in the way that his lack of ability to adjust his behaviour makes him a catalyst for all sorts of bad things. He's a Christ-like figure, Dostoyevsky describes him as the most beautiful person, but beauty doesn't thrive in the real world. None of the characters are clear cut, they're unpredictable and intensely human, which is the amazing and frustrating thing about reading Dostoyevsky. Don't feel bad if you feel like you missed some deep moral of the story, there isn't really any monolithic message. EDIT: I also strongly recommend listening to the episodes Partially Examined Life dedicated to the book, great informative and funny listening.
5 ImALivingJoke As someone below said, Welcome to Russian literature. I know quite a few Russian speakers who have the added benefit of an intimate knowledge of the language and culture who are left puzzled by the writings of Dostoevsky. I'll just say you haven't experienced the true bewilderment one gets on reading Crime and Punishment. Anyway, The Idiot is a daunting task, both to read and to understand. You must realise that Dostoevsky is a philosopher. While he might not write philosophical treatises, he does incorporate certain subjects into his writing. The good news is that The Idiot is largely devoid of these philosophical points (as far as I can tell. If anyone can refute me then please do). The bad news is that The Idiot is a largely spiritual work, one which deals with the state of the Russian man. Dostoevsky, as far as I know, was not affiliated with the Slavophile movement. He did, however, share many ideological views with them. Just to quickly say that the Slavophile moment was a 19th century intellectual movement born out of a contempt for the Westernisation Russia underwent during the reigns of Catherine the Great and Peter the Great. Many saw the decline of Russian values, which were perceived as unique, as a threat to Russia itself, and proposed modelling Russia on traditional Orthodox values (many valued the church above the state) and trying to restore Russia to it's glorified past. And this is largely the basis of the book. It tries to examine the spiritual conflict taking place within Russia during the 19th century. The characters within the book are, by and large, terrible people. They're schemers, or damaged or outright rogues. There's one shining example of a good character, one who's used as a contrast to this 'degradation', and that's The Prince. Dostoevsky wanted to see what would happen if the purest man were to be placed in this network of bad people. Bearing in mind that D was a devout Christian, who is the purest man that could be thought up? Of course the answer is Christ himself. So that's what the book is. It's examining the spiritual state of the Russian man during the processes of increased Westernisation during the 19th century. I'm not surprised if you feel somewhat disturbed by the book's conclusion. There is no redemption in the end. The degraded Russian spirit, owing to increased European influence, destroyed Christ, and this influence was only increasing in Dostoevsky's mind (you might recall the closing paragraph where Lizaveta Prokovfyevna comments on the railways going evermore East and ominously encroaching on Russia). This is the main point of the book, in my mind at least. There are other conclusions I've drawn from reading the book, but there is not the space here to adequately detail it. So I'll leave it here.
6 [deleted] [removed]
2 rhinestone_indian Read twice. Yeah, not much to add here. His characters are a bit sticky and can linger on the periphery for a bit.
11 0 DareToDasein There's a great philosophy podcast called the Partially Examined Life, they did a two part episode on this book a while ago. They usually do a pretty good deep dive into things. Hope this helps! http://partiallyexaminedlife.com
6 0 JomesJayce What point did you make of it? If you don't tell your conclusions there is no way to know if you missed the point. Its full of ugly, vile characters (and so is every Dostoyesvky book), and tense situations. The big pciture of the book is the contrast of Michkin's actions in relations to everybody else. This contrast is were the message lies, trying to be good in a world lead by "evil" motivations can only guide you to madness.
5 0 cannonballrunner Dostoyevsky is notorious for his style of writing, where no character really *speaks* for the author. It's not like Myshkin is the perfect person, and everyone should just be like him. He's very inconsiderate when you think about, in the way that his lack of ability to adjust his behaviour makes him a catalyst for all sorts of bad things. He's a Christ-like figure, Dostoyevsky describes him as the most beautiful person, but beauty doesn't thrive in the real world. None of the characters are clear cut, they're unpredictable and intensely human, which is the amazing and frustrating thing about reading Dostoyevsky. Don't feel bad if you feel like you missed some deep moral of the story, there isn't really any monolithic message. EDIT: I also strongly recommend listening to the episodes Partially Examined Life dedicated to the book, great informative and funny listening.
4 0 ImALivingJoke As someone below said, Welcome to Russian literature. I know quite a few Russian speakers who have the added benefit of an intimate knowledge of the language and culture who are left puzzled by the writings of Dostoevsky. I'll just say you haven't experienced the true bewilderment one gets on reading Crime and Punishment. Anyway, The Idiot is a daunting task, both to read and to understand. You must realise that Dostoevsky is a philosopher. While he might not write philosophical treatises, he does incorporate certain subjects into his writing. The good news is that The Idiot is largely devoid of these philosophical points (as far as I can tell. If anyone can refute me then please do). The bad news is that The Idiot is a largely spiritual work, one which deals with the state of the Russian man. Dostoevsky, as far as I know, was not affiliated with the Slavophile movement. He did, however, share many ideological views with them. Just to quickly say that the Slavophile moment was a 19th century intellectual movement born out of a contempt for the Westernisation Russia underwent during the reigns of Catherine the Great and Peter the Great. Many saw the decline of Russian values, which were perceived as unique, as a threat to Russia itself, and proposed modelling Russia on traditional Orthodox values (many valued the church above the state) and trying to restore Russia to it's glorified past. And this is largely the basis of the book. It tries to examine the spiritual conflict taking place within Russia during the 19th century. The characters within the book are, by and large, terrible people. They're schemers, or damaged or outright rogues. There's one shining example of a good character, one who's used as a contrast to this 'degradation', and that's The Prince. Dostoevsky wanted to see what would happen if the purest man were to be placed in this network of bad people. Bearing in mind that D was a devout Christian, who is the purest man that could be thought up? Of course the answer is Christ himself. So that's what the book is. It's examining the spiritual state of the Russian man during the processes of increased Westernisation during the 19th century. I'm not surprised if you feel somewhat disturbed by the book's conclusion. There is no redemption in the end. The degraded Russian spirit, owing to increased European influence, destroyed Christ, and this influence was only increasing in Dostoevsky's mind (you might recall the closing paragraph where Lizaveta Prokovfyevna comments on the railways going evermore East and ominously encroaching on Russia). This is the main point of the book, in my mind at least. There are other conclusions I've drawn from reading the book, but there is not the space here to adequately detail it. So I'll leave it here.
7 0 [deleted] [removed]
2 0 rhinestone_indian Read twice. Yeah, not much to add here. His characters are a bit sticky and can linger on the periphery for a bit.