So, remember those supposedly “classic” works of literature that you had to read in school instead of reading novels that were actually entertaining? Which are the ones you really hated?
Here’s my list:
1: The Awakening by Kate Chopin: I just detest the plot of the story that is celebrated among feminist literature: A woman in Louisiana at the turn of the 20th Century decides she’s oppressed by the male-dominated culture, and decides she doesn’t want to be a wife and mother anymore (never mind that she has a husband and children). But she can’t break free of society’s constraints, so she decides to find her freedom by drowning herself in the Gulf of Mexico.
I’m all for feminism, I really am—women should have the same opportunities in life that men do—but I hate this kind of selfish, whiny feminism that doesn’t care about how one’s actions affect others (like the children in The Awakening who will have to grow up without a mommy).
2: On the Road by Jack Kerouac: Nothing happens in this book. Like, you’re reading about these guys driving around the country thinking some actual plot is going to occur, and literally nothing happens. SPOILER ALERT: Nothing happens.
3: The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne: There’s actually a good plot here about forgiveness and redemption, but it gets lost in the awful over-dramatic, unrealistic early 1800s writing style. And I can only take someone describing a tree for so many pages.
4: Where the Red Fern Grows by Wilson Rawls: I could replace this book on the list with any of the other “my pet dog dies and it sucks” books in the literary canon-- “Old Yeller,” for instance. The point is, the average person lives a lot longer than the average dog. So if you’re a kid and you have a pet dog, the dog is probably going to die before you. Don’t expect me to get all emotional about it.
5: Oedipus Rex by Sophocles: Kill your father, marry your mother? This one’s just weird. And one thing I never understood about the Greek plays: people plucking their own eyes out in grief. Ewwwww. How do you do that?
These are the “classic” works that I hated having to get through. What literary works did you love to hate?