Friday, March 23, 2007

Friday, March 23, 2007 12:03 pm by Cristina in , , , , , ,    No comments
We have reported many times in the past news related to the Brontë novels and its school assiggments. It seems that each time things are worse then before. We read the following in The Huffington Post.
A recent news article about the case against homework cited a high school teacher who said that she would tell her students to read no more than 15 minutes a day in their assigned novel (Jane Eyre). How stupid is that? How can anyone, young or old, get engaged in a novel if he or she spends no more than 15 minutes a day reading? At that pace, it seems like this class will be reading the same novel all year, if they manage to finish it at all. (Diane Ravitch)
Stupid is the word certainly but we guess it would be worse if they weren't reading it. But: how can anyone stop reading Jane Eyre after 15 minutes?

On the flip side, we read something much better on Sedona.
The Alzheimer's Poetry Project was created by Gary Mex Glazner, recently voted in as an Advisory Board Member for NORAZ. The project uses classic poems such as Shakespeare, Yeats, Longfellow and Bronte, performed with great energy for memory care residents, sparking memories in over 16 locations in Arizona.
Now that definitely sounds much better.

This subject of reading is also tangentially touched on by The Cowl. The article debates on why novels must be labeled according to age.
Why aren't Jane Eyre or Candide called young adult novels?" he asked. "Any 13-year-old can read them." (Kristina H. Reardon)
Yes, they can but they will probably see them in a different light when they get older. However, we do agree that there's no need to pigeon-hole novels so strictly. But then again look at Harry Potter and its wide, diverse readership. If a novel is good enough it will break the barriers of age. Or at least it should.

Now for some reviews. The Spiced Tea Party reviews Jane Eyre.
This book has the most kickass opening sentence of any nineteenth-century (or later) novel:
There was no possibility of taking a walk that day.
Boom, wham bam, right in the reader's face--a challenge, that you might have to put a bit of effort into finding out who "we" are, and where they are, and so on. At the same time it's a statement of something that is not possible, not allowed, the theme, that for me, epitomizes Jane Eyre. It's the story of a woman who is denied affection, family, and love, yet triumphs at the end of the novel, in love and married, wealthy, and...happy? (Jane Lockwood)
And through this review we discover that this blogger is the author of an erotic novella called Reader, I Married Him, not to be confused with Michèle Roberts's novel!
What if...What if it were Mr. Rochester who was imprisoned in the attic? And what if other characters in Jane Eyre were not as they seemed? Here is a PG-rated excerpt from Reader I Married Him.
Movie Critic reviews a Jean Luc Godard's Week-End (1968) with the briefest and most bizarre appeareance of Emily Brontë ever:
Later on they are even in the middle of a hilariously cynical situation in which they meet the novelist Emily Bronte in the forest, starting commenting with absurd dialogues ("What a stupid movie! Everyone is an idiot!" - "It's your fault for for accepting this role!"), even being so ignorant and annoyed to put her on fire. (Marin Mandir)
Ikas Ord - in Swedish - reviews Var är Jane Eyre? The Swedish translation of Jasper Fforde's The Eyre Affair.

A couple of blogs discuss the threat of the 'unknown' in Wuthering Heights. Jen_jen_jen starts her essay with:
Brontë’s Gothic soap opera portrays the threatening unknowns of its genre on, quite literally, a very sickly stage. The clandestine landscape between the Heights and the Grange is not only a desolate milieu, but a diseased and isolated backdrop permeating the mind of both character and reader.
While urmammassofat begins with:
The threat of the "unknown" is one of the central issues within Bronte's Wuthering Heights. In both the physical and the emotional aspects of the text, the "unknown" is substantial to the texts, proving the text to be a classical romantic-gothic novel.
Click on their links to read the remainder of their essays.

The musical note to this post comes via Brontëana, with a new design. TheMuseTeam has posted several clips of Suzannah Doyle & Kristina Harris Jane Eyre. The Musical Classic (not to be mistaken with Paul Gordon's own Jane Eyre. The Musical)

And finally we couldn't help but laugh when we read this on Strife in the North.
Bronteblog for making me think that living in the north with consumption and no sex is hard but is still the best route to getting a book deal, Hollywood interest, and a Kate Bush song in your honour.
Excuse the 'self-promotion' but we actually found the conclusion drawn from the reflection to be hilarious.

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