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Date: 08-18-92 (06:15)           Number: 18175     Channel 1 (R) [HST 14,
  To: ALL                        Refer#: NONE
From: MIKE MORRIS                  Read: YES
Subj: SOME CANONICAL LISTS         Conf: (1479) arts.books
------------------------------------------------------------------------
  Newsgroup: rec.arts.books
 Message-ID: 
    Subject: Some Canonical Lists

                                  Saturday, the 15th of August, 1992

Part 1 of 5

Terrance Heath suggested maybe we should look at some canonical
lists, and since I thought it'd be fun to do so, I've gone ahead
and typed some in.

I didn't realize at first how long this project might be,
but maybe it'll help out the chap who was wanting reading lists
as well.

I'm in agreement with Dani Zweig that ``The Canon'' really has
fuzzy boundaries. I'd want to emphasize also (as I think the
various lists that follow make clear) that there are different
canons for different purposes. For instance, there are canons
of recommended books and authors among people who only read
science fiction. In terms of the categories Western Lit
or World Lit or American Lit, I think we must also distinguish between
canonization for purposes of readership, for purposes of scholarship,
and for purposes of pedagogy. They're different. At first I wasn't
going to distinguish scholarship from pedagogy, but while I think
Joyce is much the greater writer than Hemingway, I suspect there's
a practical reason of size and accessibility why Hemingway gets taught
the more, certainly in high school.

With each list that follows, I'll try to editorialize a bit at the end.

**********

List 1: A quote from T.S. Eliot
``Dante and Shakespeare divide the world between them, there is no third.''

---

Peremptory, yes? I found this as a jacket blurb on my copy of Ciardi's
translation of Dante. Don't know where it's from.

A personal version of this extreme canonization would be the old
which-ten-books-on-a-desert-island game: I'd want Homer, the Greek
playwrights, Dante and Shakespeare and Goethe and Wagner, actually
(I think of his operas as as much literature as music), and Melville
and Plato and the Bible, and I'm still wondering if I'd want Joyce, too.

**********

 

List 2: The Great Books 0. The Bible (not included in the set, but you're supposed to go read whatever translation you like) 1. The Great Conversation ------- [three volumes of intro and 2. Syntopicon 1 ------------- reference to the set] 3. Syntopicon 2 ------------- 4. Homer, _The Iliad_ and _The Odyssey_ 5. Aeschylus, Sophocles, Euripides, and Aristophanes, collected plays 6. Herodotus, _The Persian Wars_ and Thucydides, _The Peloponnesian War_ 7. Plato, collected dialogues 8. Aristotle, collected works, volume I 9. Aristotle, volume II 10. Hippocrates, collected works and Galen, _On the Natural Faculties_ 11. Euclid, _The Elements_, Archimedes, collected works, Apollonius of Perga, _Conics_, Nicomachus of Gerasa, _Introduction to Arithmetic_ 12. Lucretius, _On the Nature of Things_, Marcus Aurelius, _The Meditations_, and Epictetus, _The Discourses_ 13. Virgil, _The Aeneid_, _Eclogues_, _Georgics_ 14. Plutarch, _Parallel Lives_ 15. Tacitus, _The Annals_, _The Histories_ 16. Ptolemy, _The Almagest_, Copernicus, _On the Revolutions_, Kepler, from the _Epitome_ and _Harmonies_ 17. Plotinus, _Enneads_ 18. Saint Augustine, _Confessions_, _City of God_, _On Christian Doctrine_ 19. Saint Thomas Aquinas, from _Summa Theologica_, vol. I 20. Saint Thomas Aquinas, vol. II 21. Dante Alighieri, _The Divine Commedy_ 22. Geoffrey Chaucer, _Troilus and Cressida_, _The Canterbury Tales_ 23. Nicolo Machiavelli, _The Prince_ and Thomas Hobbes, _Leviathan_ 24. Francois Rabelais, _Gargantua and Pantagruel_ 25. Michel de Montaigne, _Essays_ 26. William Shakespeare, Plays and Sonnets, vol. I 27. William Shakespeare, vol. II 28. William Gilbert, _On the Loadstone_, Galileo Galilei, _Dialogues_, William Harvey, _On the Motion of the Heart_, _On the Circulation of the Blood_, _On the Generation of Animals_ 29. Miguel de Cervantes, _Don Quixote_ 30. Sir Francis Bacon, _Advancement of Learning, _Novum Organum_, _New Atlantis_ 31. Rene Descartes, _Rules for the Direction of the Mind_, _Discourse on the Method_, _Meditations on First Philosophy_, and other works, Benedict de Spinoza, _Ethics_ 32. John Milton, English Minor Poems, _Paradise Lost_, _Samson Agonistes_, and _Areopagitica_ 33. Blaise Pascal, _The Provincial Letters_, _Pensees_, and other works 34. Sir Isaac Newton, _Principia_ and _Optics, and Christiaan Huygens, _Treatise on Light_ 35. John Locke, _A Letter Concerning Toleration_, _Secon Essay Concerning Civil Government_, _An Essay Concerning Human Understanding_, George Berkeley, _The Principles of Human Knowledge_, and David Hume, _An Enquiry Concerning Human Understanding_ 36. Jonathon Swift, _Gulliver's Travels_, and Laurence Sterne, _Tristram Shandy_ 37. Henry Fielding, _Tom Jones_ 38. Montesquieu, _Spirit of Laws_, and Jean Jaques Rousseau, _Social Contract_ and other works 39. Adam Smith, _The Wealth of Nations_ 40. Edward Gibbon, _Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire_, vol. I 41. Edward Gibbon, vol. II 42. Immanuel Kant, _Critique of Pure Reason_, _Critique of Practical Reason_, _Critique of Judgment_, and other works 43. American State Papers, _The Federalist_, and John Stuart Mill, _On Liberty_, _Representative Government_, _Utilitarianism_ 44. James Boswell, _Life of Samuel Johnson_ 45. Antoine Laurent Lavoisier, _Elements of Chemistry_, Jean Baptiste Joseph Fourier, _Analytical Theory of Heat_, and Michael Farady, _Experimental Researches in Electricity_ 46. Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel, _The Philosophy of Right_ and _The Philosophy of History_ 47. Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, _Faust_ 48. Herman Melville, _Moby Dick_ 49. Charles Darwin, _The Origin of Species_ and the _Descent of Man_ 50. Karl Marx, _Capital_, and Marx and Friedrich Engels, _The Communist Manifesto_ 51. Count Leo Tolstoy, _War and Peace_ 52. Fyodor Dostoevsky, _The Brothers Karamazov_ 53. William James, _The Principles of Psychology_ 54. Sigmund Freud, selected works

 

--- First of all, that's my (old) set, not the new one. It sounds like they added a few more books, probably edging into the twentieth century a little. I think this is a beautiful course of books on Western Civ with slight American seasoning, though I count only three volumes with American works in them. They didn't include Voltaire(!), but they explain this as the inability to reduce Voltaire to one representative volume. Also, there's not one 19th Century English novelist! Almost no lyric poetry. The included works end approximately with the 19th Century. I think this canon is more a ``History of Ideas in Western Civ'' canon, rather than an aesthetic canon like we've been mainly discussing. But, I personally like to include works of history, science, and philosophy when I think of The Canon, so I don't mind this flavor in the least. A great bit of the set itself I own duplicated in paperback or in other editions, and especially for things like Homer and the Greek playwrights and Dante, there are much to be preferred translations, but I really like owning the set for inclusions like Apollonius of Perga and William Gilbert, i.e. the stuff I'm not likely to find in any other edition. A number of the volumes here I've read a good bit of, at least in other editions. For instance, I've read 30 out of Shakespeare's 37 plays at one time or another. But if I only count the books I've read *everything* in, I've read volumes 0, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 21, 22, 47, and 48, for fourteen out of 52 volumes (discount the 3 reference volumes and don't forget volume 0). ----- I will take the opportunity to comment on one point in the article that Terrance typed in regarding the lack of black authors in the new version of this Great Books set. The point was where Adler, I think, was quoted saying something like maybe a black would write a great book in 100 years or so. The exact wording of the quote is crucial, and if Adler actually meant this, then I would agree that Adler was saying something outrageous. Much more consistent with what I think Adler's notion of a great book is, would be not that a black won't write a great book for 100 years, but that we won't be able to judge if a black has already written a great book until 100 years passes. The obvious candidates for canonization---James Baldwin, Richard Wright, etc.---are all in the too-recent-and-too-politicized-into-current-politics-to-judge category for Adler's taste, I'll bet. Given that reporters often don't quote exactly right, and given the fine line here that separates Adler saying something outrageous from saying something quite reasonable (reasonable, that is, within the context of his canonization scheme), I'm wondering if he's been quoted correctly? ********** (continued to Part 2)

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Mike Morris (msmorris@watsci.uwaterloo.ca) --- * PCB/UseNet Gateway from Sparkware #3 HEADER:USENET Path: channel1!uupsi!psinntp!uunet!cs.utexas.edu!torn!watserv2.uwaterloo.ca!wats From: msmorris@watsci.waterloo.edu (Mike Morris) Newsgroups: rec.arts.books Subject: Some Canonical Lists Message-ID: Date: Sat, 15 Aug 1992 21:23:46 GMT @DATAPHONE@References: <9208141500.AA11548@cfdev1.shearso@DLFILES@ Sender: news@watserv1.uwaterloo.ca Organization: University of Waterloo, Waterloo, Ontario Lines: 189 Date: 08-18-92 (06:15) Number: 18179 Channel 1 (R) [HST 14, To: ALL Refer#: NONE From: MIKE MORRIS Read: YES Subj: SOME CANONICAL LISTS Conf: (1479) arts.books ------------------------------------------------------------------------ Newsgroup: rec.arts.books Message-ID: Subject: Some Canonical Lists Saturday, the 15th of August, 1992 Part 2 of 5, Continued. ********** List 3: ``A Recommended Reading List'' from Appendix A of _How to Read a Book_, by Mortimer Adler and Charles Van Doren 1. Homer (9th Century B.C.?) _Iliad_ _Odyssey_ 2. The Old Testament 3. Aeschylus (c.525-456 B.C.) Tragedies 4. Sophocles (c.495-406 B.C.) Tragedies 5. Herodotus (c.484-425 B.C.) _History_ 6. Euripides (c.485-406 B.C.) Tragedies 7. Thucydides (c.460-400 B.C.) _History of the Peloponnesian War_ 8. Hippocrates (c.460-377? B.C.) Medical Writings 9. Aristophanes (c.448-380 B.C.) Comedies 10. Plato (c.427-347 B.C.) Dialogues 11. Aristotle (384-322 B.C.) Works 12. Epicurus (c.341-270 B.C.) ``Letter to Herodotus'' ``Letter to Menoecus'' 13. Euclid (fl.c. 300 B.C.) _Elements_ 14. Archimedes (c.287-212 B.C.) Works 15. Apollonius of Perga (fl.c.240 B.C.) _Conic Sections_ 16. Cicero (106-43 B.C.) Works 17. Lucretius (c.95-55 B.C.) _On the Nature of Things_ 18. Virgil (70-19 B.C.) Works 19. Horace (65-8 B.C.) Works 20. Livy (59 B.C.--A.D. 17) _History of Rome_ 21. Ovid (43 B.C.--A.D. 17) Works 22. Plutarch (c.45-120) _Parallel Lives_ _Moralia_ 23. Tacitus (c.55-117) _Histories_ _Annals_ _Agricola_ _Germania_ 24. Nicomachus of Gerasa (fl.c. 100 A.D.) _Introduction to Arithmetic_ 25. Epictetus (c.60-120) _Discourses_ _Encheiridion_ 26. Ptolemy (c.100-170; fl. 127-151) _Almagest_ 27. Lucian (c.120-c.190) Works 28. Marcus Aurelius (121-180) _Meditations_ 29. Galen (C. 130-200) _On the Natural Faculties_ 30. The New Testament 31. Plotinus (205-270) _The Enneads_ 32. St. Augustine (354-430) _On the Teacher_ _Confessions_ _City of God_ _On Christian Doctrine_ 33. _The Song of Roland_ (12th century?) 34. _The Nibelungenlied_ (13th century?) (_Volsunga Saga_ as Scandinavian version) 35. _The Saga of Burnt Njal_ 36. St. Thomas Aquinas (c.1225-1274) _Summa Theologica_ 37. Dante Alighieri (1265-1321) _The New Life_ _On Monarchy_ _The Divine Comedy_ 38. Geoffrey Chaucer (c.1340-1400) _Troilus and Criseyde_ _The Canterbury Tales_ 39. Leonardo da Vinci (1452-1519) _Notebooks_ 40. Niccolo Machiavelli (1469-1527) _The Prince_ _Discourses on the First Ten Books of Livy_ 41. Desiderius Erasmus (c.1469-1536) _The Praise of Folly_ 42. Nicolaus Copernicus (1473-1543) _On the Revolutions of the Heavenly Spheres_ 43. Sir Thomas More (c.1478-1535) _Utopia_ 44. Martin Luther (1483-1546) _Table Talk_ _Three Treatises_ 45. Francois Rabelais (c.1495-1553) _Gargantua and Pantagruel_ 46. John Calvin (1509-1564) _Institutes of the Christian Religion_ 47. Michel de Montaigne (1533-1592) _Essays_ 48. William Gilbert (1540-1603) _On the Loadstone and Magnetic Bodies_ 49. Miguel de Cervantes (1547-1616) _Don Quixote_ 50. Edmund Spenser (c.1552-1599) _Prothalamion_ _The Faerie Queene_ 51. Francis Bacon (1561-1626) _Essays_ _Advancement of Learning_ _Novum Organum_ _New Atlantis_ 52. William Shakespeare (1564-1616) Poetry and Plays 53. Galieo Galilei (1564-1642) _The Starry Messenger_ _Dialogues Concerning Two New Sciences_ 54. Johannes Kepler (1571-1630) _Epitome of Copernican Astronomy_ _Concerning the Harmonies of the World_ 55. William Harvey (1578-1657) _On the Motion of the Heart and Blood in Animals_ _On the Circulation of the Blood_ _On the Generation of Animals_ 56. Thomas Hobbes (1588-1679) _The Leviathan_ 57. Rene Descartes (1596-1650) _Rules for the Direction of the Mind_ _Discourse on the Method_ _Geometry_ _Meditations on First Philosophy_

 

58. John Milton (1608-1674) Works 59. Moliere (1622-1673) Comedies 60. Blaise Pascal (1623-1662) _The Provincial Letters_ _Pensees_ Scientific Treatises 61. Christiaan Huygens (1629-1695) _Treatise on Light_ 62. Benedict de Spinoza (1632-1677) _Ethics_ 63. John Locke (1632-1704) _Letter Concerning Toleration_ ``Of Civil Government'' _Essay Concerning Human Understanding_ _Thoughts Concerning Education_ 64. Jean Baptiste Racine (1639-1699) Tragedies 65. Isaac Newton (1642-1727) _Mathematical Principles of Natural Philosophy_ _Optics_ 66. Gottfried Wilhelm von Leibniz (1646-1716) _Discourse on Metaphysics_ _New Essays Concerning Human Understanding_ _Monadology_ 67. Daniel Defoe (1660-1731) _Robinson Crusoe_ 68. Jonathon Swift (1667-1745) _A Tale of a Tub_ _Journal to Stella_ _Gulliver's Travels_ _A Modest Proposal_ 69. William Congreve (1670-1729) _The Way of the World_ 70. George Berkeley (1685-1753) _Principles of Human Knowledge_ 71. Alexander Pope (1688-1744) _Essay on Criticism_ _Rape of the Lock_ _Essay on Man_ 72. Charles de Secondat, Baron de Montesquieu (1689-1755) _Persian Letters_ _Spirit of Laws_ 73. Voltaire (1694-1778) _Letters on the English_ Continued in the next message... --- * PCB/UseNet Gateway from Sparkware #3 Date: 08-18-92 (06:15) Number: 18180 Channel 1 (R) [HST 14, To: ALL Refer#: NONE From: MIKE MORRIS Read: YES Subj: SOME CANONICAL LISTS Conf: (1479) arts.books ------------------------------------------------------------------------ Newsgroup: rec.arts.books Message-ID: Subject: Some Canonical Lists

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(Continued from the previous message) _Candide_ _Philosophical Dictionary_ 74. Henry Fielding (1707-1754) _Joseph Andrews_ _Tom Jones_ 75. Samuel Johnson (1709-1784) _The Vanity of Human Wishes_ _Dictionary_ _Rasselas_ _The Lives of the Poets_ 76. David Hume (1711-1776) _Treatise on Human Nature_ _Essays Moral and Political_ _An Inquiry Concerning Human Understanding_ 77. Jean Jaques Rousseau (1712-1778) _On the Origin of Inequality_ _On the Political Economy_ _Emile_ _The Social Contract_ 78. Laurence Sterne (1713-1768) _Tristram Shandy_ _A Sentimental Journey through France and Italy_ 79. Adam Smith (1723-1790) _The Theory of Moral Sentiments_ _Wealth of Nations_ 80. Immanuel Kant (1724-1804) _Critique of Pure Reason_ _Fundamental Principles of the Metaphysics of Morals_ _Critique of Practical Reason_ _The Science of Right_ _Critique of Judgment_ _Perpetual Peace_ 81. Edward Gibbon (1737-1794) _The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire_ _Autobiography_ 82. James Boswell (1740-1795) Journal _Life of Samuel Johnson, Ll.D._ 83. Antoine Laurent Lavoisier (1743-1794) _Elements of Chemistry_ 84. John Jay (1745-1829), James Madison (1751-1836), and Alexander Hamilton (1757-1804) _Federalist Papers_ (together with Articles of Confederation, Constitution of the United States, and Declaration of Independence) 85. Jeremy Bentham (1748-1832) _Introduction to the Principles of Morals and Legislation_ _Theory of Fictions_ 86. Johann Wolfgang von Goethe (1749-1832) _Faust_ _Poetry and Truth_ 87. Jean Baptiste Joseph Fourier (1768-1830) _Analytical Theory of Heat_ 88. Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel (1770-1831) _Phenomenology of Spirit_ _Philosophy of Right_ _Lectures on the Philosophy of History_ 89. William Wordsworth (1770-1850) Poems 90. Samuel Taylor Coleridge (1772-1834) Poems _Biographia Literaria_ 91. Jane Austen (1775-1817) _Pride and Prejudice_ _Emma_ 92. Karl von Clausewitz (1780-1831) _On War_ 93. Stendhal (1783-1842) _The Red and the Black_ _The Charterhouse of Parma_ _On Love_ 94. George Gordon, Lord Byron (1788-1824) _Don Juan_ 95. Arthur Schopenhauer (1788-1860) _Studies in Pessimism_ 96. Michael Faraday (1791-1867) _Chemical History of a Candle_ _Experimental Researches in Electricity_ 97. Charles Lyell (1797-1875) _Principles of Geology_ 98. Auguste Comte (1798-1857) _The Positive Philosophy_ 99. Honore de Balzac (1799-1850) _Pere Goriot_ _Eugenie Grandet_ 100. Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882) _Representative Men_ _Essays_ _Journal_

 

101. Nathaniel Hawthorne (1804-1864) _The Scarlet Letter_ 102. Alexis de Tocqueville (1805-1859) _Democracy in America_ 103. John Stuart Mill (1806-1873) _A System of Logic_ _On Liberty_ _Representative Government_ _Utilitarianism_ _The Subjection of Women_ _Autobiography_ 104. Charles Darwin (1809-1882) _The Origin of Species_ _The Descent of Man_ _Autobiography_ 105. Charles Dickens (1812-1870) Works 106. Claude Bernard (1813-1878) _Introduction to the Study of Experimental Medicine_ 107. Henry David Thoreau (1817-1862) _Civil Disobedience_ _Walden_ 108. Karl Marx (1818-1883) _Capital_ (together with _Communist Manifesto_) 109. George Eliot (1819-1880) _Adam Bede_ _Middlemarch_ 110. Herman Melville (1819-1891) _Moby Dick_ _Billy Budd_ 111. Fyodor Dostoevsky (1821-1881) _Crime and Punishment_ _The Idiot_ _The Brothers Karamazov_ 112. Gustave Flaubert (1821-1880) _Madame Bovary_ _Three Stories_ 113. Henrik Ibsen (1828-1906) Plays 114. Leo Tolstoy (1828-1910) _War and Peace_ _Anna Karenina_ _What is Art?_ _Twenty-Three Tales_ 115. Mark Twain (1835-1910) _The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn_ _The Mysterious Stranger_ 116. William James (1842-1910) _The Principles of Psychology_ _The Varieties of Religious Experience_ _Pragamatism_ _Essays in Radical Empiricism_ 117. Henry James (1843-1916) _The American_ _The Ambassadors_ 118. Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche (1844-1900) _Thus Spoke Zarathustra_ _Beyond Good and Evil_ _The Geneology of Morals_ _The Will to Power_ 119. Jules Henri Poincare (1854-1912) _Science and Hypothesis_ _Science and Method_ 120. Sigmund Freud (1856-1939) _The Interpretation of Dreams_ _Introductory Lectures on Psychoanalysis_ _Civilization and Its Discontents_ _New Introductory Lectures on Psychoanalysis_ 121. George Bernard Shaw (1856-1950) Plays and Prefaces 122. Max Planck (1858-1947) _Origin and Development of the Quantum Theory_ _Where Is Science Going?_ _Scientific Autobiography_ 123. Henri Bergson (1859-1941) _Time and Free Will_ _Matter and Memory_ _Creative Evolution_ _The Two Sources of Morality and Religion_ 124. John Dewey (1859-1952) _How We Think_ _Democracy and Education_ _Experience and Nature_ _Logic, the Theory of Inquiry_ 125. Alfred North Whitehead (1861-1947) _An Introduction to Mathematics_ _Science and the Modern World_ _The Aims of Education and Other Essays_ _Adventures of Ideas_ 126. George Santayana (1863-1952) _The Life of Reason_ _Skepticism and Animal Faith_ _Persons and Places_ 127. Nikolai Lenin (1870-1924) _The State and Revolution_ 128. Marcel Proust (1871-1922) _Remembrance of Things Past_ 129. Bertrand Russell (1872-1970) _The Problems of Philosophy_ _The Analsysis of Mind_ Continued in the next message...

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--- * PCB/UseNet Gateway from Sparkware #3 Date: 08-18-92 (06:15) Number: 18181 Channel 1 (R) [HST 14, To: ALL Refer#: NONE From: MIKE MORRIS Read: YES Subj: SOME CANONICAL LISTS Conf: (1479) arts.books ------------------------------------------------------------------------ Newsgroup: rec.arts.books Message-ID: Subject: Some Canonical Lists (Continued from the previous message) _An Inquiry into Meaning and Truth_ _Human Knowledge; Its Scope and Limits_ 130. Thomas Mann (1875-1955) _The Magic Mountain_ _Joseph and His Brothers_ 131. Albert Einstein (1879-1955) _The Meaning of Relativity_ _On the Method of Theoretical Physics_ _The Evolution of Physics_ (with L. Infeld) 132. James Joyce (1882-1941) ``The Dead'' in _Dubliners_ _Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man_ _Ulysses_ 133. Jaques Maritain (1882- ) _Art and Scholasticism_ _The Degrees of Knowledge_ _The Rights of Man and Natural Law_ _True Humanism_ 134. Franz Kafka (1883-1924) _The Trial_ _The Castle_ 135. Arnold Toynbee (1889- ) _A Study of History_ _Civilization on Trial_ 136. Jean Paul Sartre (1905- ) _Nausea_ _No Exit_ _Being and Nothingness_ 137. Aleksandr I. Solzhenitsyn (1918- ) _The First Circle_ _The Cancer Ward_ ---------

 

Wow! Two whole people born in this century! There's a new edition of _How to Read a Book_ out with a slightly updated list, so the one here is out of date. (I strongly recommend reading the book, by the way.) Mortimer Adler and his circle are sort of the canonical canonizers, the people the ``canon-bashers'' love to hate, as it were. This list duplicates much of the Great Books set. I think it's like the short list from which the actual books to be included in the Set were chosen. So, it maybe gives an example of the act of choosing a smaller set of books from the larger set, or canonization in action. Clearly, Dickens and Voltaire were excluded because they are not reducible to one volume. This list, to my mind, still has the character of a History of Ideas in Western Civ Canon, although it does a little better on including works of the imagination than the Great Books list does. Though I haven't seen the new Great Books set, this does make me think that the criticism of that set for not being inclusive of black authors (in the article that Terrance Heath posted for us) is a little bit off the mark. Adler's canon is going in a completely different direction than an aesthetic, literary canon would go. Also, it's deliberately biased to *old* books. And older almost always means less democratically egalitarian, for obvious reasons. Again, though I've read sizable chunks of a lot more, if I count only the entries where I've read everything, I've read 1., 2., 3., 4., 5., 6., 7., 8., 9., 10., 11., 12., 13., 14., 15., 17., 24., 25., 28., 29., 30., 33., 41., 94., 101., and 132., for a total of 26 out of 137 on this list. ********** (continued to Part 3) Mike Morris (msmorris@watsci.uwaterloo.ca) --- * PCB/UseNet Gateway from Sparkware #3 HEADER:USENET Path: channel1!uupsi!psinntp!uunet!cs.utexas.edu!torn!watserv2.uwaterloo.ca!wats From: msmorris@watsci.waterloo.edu (Mike Morris) Newsgroups: rec.arts.books Subject: Some Canonical Lists Message-ID: Date: Sat, 15 Aug 1992 21:28:02 GMT Sender: news@watserv1.uwaterloo.ca Organization: University of Waterloo, Waterloo, Ontario Lines: 456 Date: 08-18-92 (06:15) Number: 18182 Channel 1 (R) [HST 14, To: ALL Refer#: NONE From: MIKE MORRIS Read: YES Subj: SOME CANONICAL LISTS Conf: (1479) arts.books ------------------------------------------------------------------------ Newsgroup: rec.arts.books Message-ID: Subject: Some Canonical Lists Saturday, the 15th of August, 1992

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Part 4 of 5 , Continued. ********** List 6: The Library of America 1. Herman Melville, _Typee_, _Omoo_, _Mardi_ 2. Nathaniel Hawthorne, _Tales and Sketches_ 3. Walt Whitman, _Poetry and Prose_ 4. Harriet Beecher Stowe, _Three Novels_ 5. Mark Twain, _Mississippi Writings_ 6. Jack London, _Novels and Stories_ 7. Jack London, _Novels and Social Writings_ 8. William Dean Howells, _Novels 1875-1886_ 9. Herman Melville, _Redburn_, _White-Jacket_, _Moby Dick_ 10. Nathaniel Hawthorne, _Novels_ 11. Francis Parkman, _France and England in North America_, vol. I 12. Francis Parkman, _France and England in North America_, vol. II 13. Henry James, _Novels 1871-1880_ 14. Henry Adams, _Novels_, _Mont Sant Michel_, _The Education_ 15. Ralph Waldo Emerson, _Essays and Lectures_ 16. Washington Irving, _History, Tales, and Sketches_ 17. Thomas Jefferson, _Writings_ 18. Stephen Crane, _Prose and Poetry_ 19. Edgar Allan Poe, _Poetry and Tales_ 20. Edgar Allan Poe, _Essays and Reviews_ 21. Mark Twain, _The Innocents Abroad_, _Roughing It_ 22. Henry James, _Essays, American & English Writers_ 23. Henry James, _European Writers & The Prefaces_ 24. Herman Melville, _Pierre_, _Israel Potter, The Confidence-Man_, _Tales_, & _Billy Budd_ 25. William Faulkner, _Novels 1930-1935_ 26. James Fenimore Cooper, _The Leatherstocking Tales_ vol. I 27. James Fenimore Cooper, _The Leatherstocking Tales_ vol. II 28. Henry David Thoreau, _A Week_, _Walden_, _The Maine Woods_, _Cape Cod_ 29. Henry James, _Novels 1881-1886_ 30. Edith Wharton, _Novels_ 31. Henry Adams, _History of the United States during the Administration of Jefferson_ 32. Henry Adams, _History of the United States during the Administration of Madison_ 33. Frank Norris, _Novels and Essays_ 34. W.E.B. Du Bois, _Writings_ 35. Willa Cather, _Early Novels and Stories_ 36. Theodore Dreiser, _Sister Carrie_, _Jennie Gerhardt_, _Twelve Men_ 37. Benjamin Franklin, _Writings_ 38. William James, _Writings 1902-1910_ 39. Flannery O'Connor, _Collected Works_ 40. Eugene O'Neill, _Complete Plays 1913-1920_ 41. Eugene O'Neill, _Complete Plays 1920-1931_ 42. Eugene O'Neill, _Complete Plays 1932-1943_ 43. Henry James, _Novels 1886-1890_ 44. William Dean Howells, _Novels 1886-1888_ 45. Abraham Lincoln, _Speeches and Writings 1832-1858_ 46. Abraham Lincoln, _Speeches and Writings 1859-1865_ 47. Edith Wharton, _Novellas and Other Writing_ 48. William Faulkner, _Novels 1936-1940_ 49. Willa Cather, _Later Novels_ 50. Ulysses S. Grant, _Personal Memoirs and Selected Letters_ 51. William Tecumseh Sherman, _Memoirs_ ---

 

I think this set of books is wonderful for providing editions of complete works. So, for instance, I've read almost every play I could find in paperback by O'Neill, which is most of his oevre but not quite and the LoA edition gives me access to the missing plays. The series is still in the process of being published, and two volumes of Richard Wright's collected works have been added, as well as Madison's _Notes on the Constitutional Debates_, and another volume of Parkman containing _The Oregon Trail_ and _The Conspiracy of Pontiac_. Again the bias so far is for older works, but they are beginning to do some twentieth century stuff, and more can be expected in the future. You can find the volumes in bookstores with black covers set off in red striping, and there are both hardback and paperback formats available. I subscribe, have now 45 of them, and they send them to me at 8 a year at $29.70 US per (this is a little higher than it would be in the US because of the Canadian postage & tax). I've read 26., 27., 16., 11., 12. and 17., for 6 out of 51 of these at present. ********** List 7: _99 Novels: The Best in English Since 1939_, by Anthony Burgess |1939 1. _Party Going_, Henry Green 2. _After Many a Summer_, Aldous Huxley 3. _Finnegans Wake_, James Joyce 4. _At Swim-Two-Birds_, Flann O'Brien |1940 5. _The Power and the Glory_, Graham Greene 6. _For Whom the Bell Tolls_, Ernest Hemingway 7. _Strangers and Brothers_ (to 1970), C.P. Snow |1941 8. _The Aerodrome_, Rex Warner |1944 9. _The Horse's Mouth_, Joyce Cary 10. _The Razor's Edge_, Somerset Maugham |1945 11. _Brideshead Revisited_, Evelyn Waugh |1946 12. _Titus Groan_, Mervyn Peake |1947 13. _The Victim_, Saul Bellow 14. _Under the Volcano_, Malcolm Lowry |1948 15. _The Heart of the Matter_, Graham Greene 16. _Ape and Essence_, Aldous Huxley 17. _The Naked and the Dead_, Norman Mailer 18. _No Highway_, Nevil Shute |1949 19. _The Heat of the Day_, Elizabeth Bowen 20. _Nineteen Eighty-Four_, George Orwell 21. _The Body_, William Sansom |1950 22. _Scenes from Provincial Life_, William Cooper 23. _The Disenchanted_, Budd Schulberg |1951 24. _A Dance to the Music of Time_ (to 1975), Anthony Powell 25. _The Catcher in the Rye_, J.D. Salinger 26. _The Chronicle of Ancient Sunlight_ (to 1969), Henry Williamson 27. _The Caine Mutiny_, Herman Wouk |1952 28. _Invisible Man_, Ralph Ellison 29. _The Old Man and the Sea_, Ernest Hemingway 30. _The Groves of Academe_, Mary McCarthy 31. _Wise Blood_, Flannery O'Connor 32. _Sword of Honour_ (to 1961), Evelyn Waugh |1953 33. _The Long Goodbye_, Raymond Chandler |1954 34. _Lucky Jim_, Kingsley Amis |1957 35. _Room at the Top_, John Braine 36. _The Alexandria Quartet_ (to 1960), Lawrence Durrell 37. _The London Novels_ (to 1960), Colin MacInnes 38. _The Assistant_, Bernard Malamud |1958 39. _The Bell_, Iris Murdoch 40. _Saturday Night and Sunday Morning_, Alan Sillitoe 41. _The Once and Future King_, T.H. White |1959 42. _The Mansion_, William Faulkner 43. _Goldfinger_, Ian Fleming |1960 44. _Facial Justice_, L.P. Hartley 45. _The Balkans Trilogy_ (to 1965), Olivia Manning |1961 46. _The Mighty and Their Fall_, Ivy Compton-Burnett 47. _Catch-22_, Joseph Heller 48. _The Fox in the Attic_, Richard Hughes 49. _Riders in the Chariot_, Patrick White 50. _The Old Men at the Zoo_, Angus Wilson |1962 51. _Another Country_, James Baldwin 52. _An Error of Judgment_, Pamela Hansford Johnson 53. _Island_, Aldous Huxley 54. _The Golden Notebook_, Doris Lessing 55. _Pale Fire_, Vladimir Nabokov |1963 56. _The Girls of Slender Means_, Muriel Spark |1964 57. _The Spire_, William Golding 58. _Heartland_, Wilson Harris 59. _A Single Man_, Christopher Isherwood 60. _The Defence_, Vladimir Nabokov 61. _Late Call_, Angus Wilson |1965 62. _The Lockwood Concern_, John O'Hara 63. _The Mandelbaum Gate_, Muriel Spark |1966 64. _A Man of the People_, Chinua Achebe 65. _The Anti-Death League_, Kingsley Amis 66. _Giles Goat-Boy_, John Barth 67. _The Late Bourgeois World_, Nadine Gordimer 68. _The Last Gentleman_, Walker Percy |1967 69. _The Vendor of Sweets_, R.K. Narayan |1968 70. _The Image Men_, J.B. Priestley 71. _Cocksure_, Mordecai Richler 72. _Pavane_, Keith Roberts |1969 73. _The French Lieutenant's Woman_, John Fowles 74. _Portnoy's Complaint_, Philip Roth |1970 Continued in the next message...

 

--- * PCB/UseNet Gateway from Sparkware #3 Date: 08-18-92 (06:15) Number: 18183 Channel 1 (R) [HST 14, To: ALL Refer#: NONE From: MIKE MORRIS Read: YES Subj: SOME CANONICAL LISTS Conf: (1479) arts.books ------------------------------------------------------------------------ Newsgroup: rec.arts.books Message-ID: Subject: Some Canonical Lists (Continued from the previous message) 75. _Bomber_, Len Deighton |1973 76. _Sweet Dreams_, Michael Frayn 77. _Gravity's Rainbow_, Thomas Pynchon |1975 78. _Humboldt's Gift_, Saul Bellow 79. _The History Man_, Malcolm Bradbury |1976 80. _The Doctor's Wife_, Brian Moore 81. _Falstaff_, Robert Nye |1977 82. _How to Save Your Own Life_, Erica Jong 83. _Farewell Companions_, James Plunkett 84. _Staying On_, Paul Scott |1978 85. _The Coup_, John Updike |1979 86. _The Unlimited Dream Company_, J.G. Ballard 87. _Dubin's Lives_, Bernard Malamud 88. _A Bend in the River_, V.S. Naipaul 89. _Sophie's Choice_, William Stryon |1980 90. _Life in the West_, Brian Aldiss 91. _Riddley Walker_, Russell Hoban 92. _How Far Can You Go?_, David Lodge 93. _A Confederacy of Dunces_, John Kennedy Toole |1981 94. _Lanark_, Alasdair Gray 95. _Darconville's Cat_, Alexander Theroux 96. _The Mosquito Coast_, Paul Theroux 97. _Creation_, Gore Vidal |1982 98. _The Rebel Angels_, Robertson Davies |1983 99. _Ancient Evenings_, Norman Mailer --- How's that for something completely different?

 

Again, I'd recommend the little book. It's made up of one page appreciations for each of the novels mentioned. It is a little maddening, though, because he really doesn't limit himself to 99 books. Instead, he often will say he chose this particular book for some quirky reason, and that all the 10 other novels by this author are equally as good. Anyway, it's a lovely list of suggested readings in modern English novels. Of course, I do much better when there are classical Greeks on the list. I've read 3., 4., 5., 20., 25., 29., 41., and 77., for 8 out of 99. ********** (continued to Part 5) Mike Morris (msmorris@watsci.uwaterloo.ca) --- * PCB/UseNet Gateway from Sparkware #3 HEADER:USENET Path: channel1!uupsi!psinntp!uunet!cs.utexas.edu!torn!watserv2.uwaterloo.ca!wats From: msmorris@watsci.waterloo.edu (Mike Morris) Newsgroups: rec.arts.books Subject: Some Canonical Lists Message-ID: Date: Sat, 15 Aug 1992 21:30:52 GMT Sender: news@watserv1.uwaterloo.ca Organization: University of Waterloo, Waterloo, Ontario Lines: 250 Date: 08-18-92 (06:15) Number: 18184 Channel 1 (R) [HST 14, To: ALL Refer#: NONE From: MIKE MORRIS Read: YES Subj: SOME CANONICAL LISTS Conf: (1479) arts.books ------------------------------------------------------------------------ Newsgroup: rec.arts.books Message-ID: Subject: Some Canonical Lists Saturday, the 15th of August, 1992

 

Part 5 of 5 , Continued. ********** List 7: Recommended Reading in Great Literature, Lake Forest Library, Lake Forest, Illinois |Ancient World 1. The Bible 2. Aristophanes, _The Birds_ 3. Aristotle, _Poetics_ 4. Homer, _Odyssey_, _Iliad_ 5. Horace, _Odes_, etc. 6. Pindar, _Olympians_, etc. 7. Plato, _Republic_ 8. Sophocles, _Oedipus Rex_ 9. Theocritus, _Idylls_ 10. Virgil, _Aeneid_, etc. ----For background & lighter reading 11. E. Hamilton, _Mythology_, etc. 12. M. Renault, _The King Must Die_, etc. 13. J. William, _Augustus_ |Middle Ages 14. Bede, _History of the English Church and People_ 15. _Beowulf_ 16. A.C. Cawley, _Everyman & Miracle Plays_ 17. G. Chaucer _Canterbury Tales_ 18. Dante, _Divine Comedy_ 19. W. Langland, _Piers the Ploughman_ 20. T. Malory, _Le Morte d'Arthur_ ----For background & lighter reading 21. Ackerman, _Backgrounds to Medieval Literature_ 22. J. Gardner, _Grendel_ 23. M. Stewart, _The Crystal Cave_, etc. 24. T.H. White _Once and Future King_ |Renaissance & 17th Century 25. M. Cervantes, _Don Quixote_ 26. J. Donne, Collected Poems 27. J. Dryden, _MacFlecknoe_, etc. 28. B. Jonson, Epigrams, Plays 29. C. Marlowe, Poems, _Doctor Faustus_ 30. J. Milton, _Paradise Lost_, _L'Allegro_ 31. W. Shakespeare, Sonnets, Plays 32. E. Spenser, _Shephearde's Calender_ |18th Century 33. H. Fielding, _Joseph Andrews_ 34. T. Gray, _Elegy in a Country Churchyard_ 35. S. Johnson, _Life of Milton_, etc. 36. A. Pope, _Rape of the Lock_, etc. 37. J. Swift, _Gulliver's Travels_ |19th Century ----Poetry 38. M. Arnold, _Dover Beach_ 39. R. Browning, Collected Works 40. S.T. Coleridge, _Ancient Mariner_ 41. E. Dickinson, Collected Works 42. J. Keats, Collected Works 43. E.A. Poe, _The Raven_ 44. P.B. Shelley, Collected Works 45. A. Tennyson, _Idylls of the King_, etc. 46. W. Whitman, _Leaves of Grass_ 47. W. Wordsworth, Collected Works ----Prose 48. J. Austen, _Pride and Prejudice_ 49. C. Bronte, _Jane Eyre_ 50. E. Bronte, _Wuthering Heights_ 51. L. Carroll, _Alice in Wonderland_ 52. W. Cather, _My Antonia_, etc. 53. J. Cooper, _Last of the Mohicans_ 54. C. Dickens, _Great Expectations_, etc. 55. F. Dostoyevsky, _Crime & Punishment_, etc. 56. G. Eliot, _Adam Bede_ 57. R.W. Emerson, _American Scholar_, etc. 58. G. Flaubert, _Madame Bovary_ 59. T. Hardy, _Tess of the d'Urbervilles_, etc. 60. N. Hawthorne, _Scarlet Letter_, etc. 61. W. Irving, _Legend of Sleepy Hollow_ 62. H. Melville, _Billy Budd_, _Moby Dick_, etc. 63. W. Scott, _Ivanhoe_, etc. 64. W.M. Thackery, _Vanity Fair_ 65. H.D. Thoreau, _Walden_ 66. L. Tolstoy, _War and Peace_ 67. M. Twain, _Huckleberry Finn_, _Roughing It_ |Late 19th & 20th Century ----Drama 68. S. Becket, _Waiting for Godot_ 69. B. Brecht, _Mother Courage_ 70. A. Chekhov, _Cherry Orchard_ 71. L. Hansberry, _A Raisin in the Sun_ 72. H. Ibsen, _A Doll's House_, etc. 73. A. Miller, _Death of a Salesman 74. E. O'Neill, _Ah Wilderness_, etc. 75. Pirandello, _Six Characters in Search..._ 76. G.B. Shaw, _Pygmalion_, _Major Barbara_, etc. 77. A. Strindberg, _Miss Julie_, etc. 78. J. Synge, _Playboy of the Western World_ 79. O. Wilde, _The Importance of Being Ernest_ 80. T. Wilder, _Our Town_, _Skin of Our Teeth_ 81. T. Williams, _Streetcar Named Desire_ ----Poetry 82. W.H. Auden, Collected Works 83. e.e. cummings, Collected Works 84. T.S. Eliot, _Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock_ 85. R. Frost, Collected Works 86. G.M. Hopkins, Collected Works 87. A.E. Housman, Collected Works 88. T. Roethke, Collected Works 89. W.B. Yeats, Collected Works ----Essays, Short Stories, Expository Works 90. J. Didion, Collected Works 91. A. Dillard, Collected Works 92. L. Eiseley, _Immense Journey_, etc. 93. J. McPhee, Collected Works 94. F. O'Connor, Collected Works 95. Saki (Munro), Collected Short Stories 96. L. Thomas, Collected Works 97. J. Thurber, _Carnival_, etc. 98. E.B. White, Essays ----Prose 99. S. Anderson, _Winesburg, Ohio_ 100. J. Conrad, _Lord Jim_, _Heart of Darkness_

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101. W. Faulkner, _Sound and the Fury_ 102. F.S. Fitzgerald, _Great Gatsby_ 103. E.M. Forster, _A Passage to India_ 104. J. Galsworthy, _Forsyte Saga_ 105. E. Hemingway, _The Sun also Rises_ 106. A. Huxley, _Brave New World_ 107. H. James, _The Ambassadors_, etc. 108. J. Joyce, _Portrait of the Artist..._, etc. 109. D.H. Lawrence, _Women in Love_ 110. S. Lewis, _Main Street_ 111. J. Steinbeck, _The Grapes of Wrath_ 112. V. Woolf, _To the Lighthouse_ 113. R. Wright, _Native Son_ |Contemporary ----Prose 114. K. Amis, _Lucky Jim_ 115. J. Baldwin, _Go Tell it on the Mountain_ 116. S. Beckett, _Murphy_ 117. J. Barth, _The End of the Road_ 118. R. Bradbury, _The Martian Chronicles_ 119. A. Burgess, _Enderby_, _A Clockwork Orange_ 120. A. Camus, _Outsider_, _Plague_ 121. R. Ellison, _Invisible Man_ 122. F.M. Ford, _The Good Soldier_ 123. J. Gardner, _October Light_ 124. W. Golding, _Lord of the Flies_ 125. J. Heller, _Catch-22_ 126. J. Herriot, _All Creatures Great & Small_ 127. J. Knowles, _A Separate Peace_ 128. H. Lee, _To Kill a Mockingbird_ 129. N. Mailer, _Armies of the Night_ 130. T. Morrison, _Song of Solomon_ 131. G. Orwell, _Animal Farm_, _1984_ 132. A. Paton, _Cry the Beloved Country_ 133. J.D. Salinger, _Catcher in the Rye_ 134. J.R.R. Tolkien, _Lord of the Rings_ 135. J. Watson, _The Double Helix_ ---

 

This is a little pamphlet that Martha picked up at the Lake Forest Library. It seems to me a little more pop, contemporary than any of the previous lists? I've read 1., 2., 3., 4., 6., 7., 8., 9., 15., 17., 18., 20., 22., 24., 37., 40., 43., 45., 51., 53., 61., 68., 70., 72., 73., 77., 79., 81., 84., 108., 116., 118., 120., 131., 133., and 134., for 36 out of 135 entries. ********** List 9: ``The UWM Bookstore's Select 100 as of April, 1989'' 1. _Adventures of Huckleberry Finn_, Twain 2. _Animal Farm_, Orwell 3. _Art of War_, Sun Tsu 4. _As I Lay Dying_, Faulkner 5. _Atlas Shrugged_, Rand 6. The Bible 7. _Brave New World_, Huxley 8. _Brothers Karamazov_, Dostoevsky 9. _Candide_, Voltaire 10. _Canticle for Liebowitz_, Miller 11. _Catch-22_, Heller 12. _Catcher in the Rye_, Salinger 13. _City in History_, Mumford 14. _Clockwork Orange_, Burgess 15. _Color Purple_, Walker Continued in the next message... --- * PCB/UseNet Gateway from Sparkware #3 Date: 08-18-92 (06:15) Number: 18185 Channel 1 (R) [HST 14, To: ALL Refer#: NONE From: MIKE MORRIS Read: YES Subj: SOME CANONICAL LISTS Conf: (1479) arts.books ------------------------------------------------------------------------ Newsgroup: rec.arts.books Message-ID: Subject: Some Canonical Lists

 

(Continued from the previous message) 16. _Communist Manifesto_, Marx & Engels 17. Complete Works, Shakespeare 18. _Confederacy of Dunces_, Toole 19. _Confessions_, St. Augustine 20. _Crime and Punishment_, Dostoevsky 21. _Crucible_, Miller 22. _Cry, the Bleoved Country_, Paton 23. _Dancing Wu-Li Masters_, Zukav 24. _Divine Comedy_, Dante 25. _Doctor Zhivago_, Pasternak 26. _Don Quixote_, Cervantes 27. _Double Helix_, Watscon 28. _Dune Trilogy_, Herbert 29. _Elements of Style_, Strunk & White 30. _Entropy_, Rifkin 31. _Ethan Frome_, Wharton 32. _Fahrenheit 451_, Bradbury 33. _Farewell to Arms_, Hemingway 34. _Faust_, Goethe 35. _Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas_, Thompson 36. _Federalist Papers_, Hamilton, Madison, Jay 37. _Flatland_, Abbott 38. _Forbidden Colors_, Mishima 39. _Foundation Trilogy_, Asimov 40. _Fountainhead_, Rand 41. _Free to Choose_, Friedman 42. _Godel, Escher, Bach_, Hofstadter 43. _Gone with the Wind_, Mitchell 44. _Grapes of Wrath_, Steinbeck 45. _Gravity's Rainbow_, Pynchon 46. _Great Expectations_, Dickens 47. _Great Gatsby_, Fitzgerald 48. _Gulliver's Travels_, Swift 49. _Handmaid's Tale_, Atwood 50. _Hiroshima_, Hersey 51. _How Democracies Perish_, Revel 52. _Iliad_, Homer 53. _Invisible Man_, Ellison 54. _Jane Eyre_, Bronte 55. _Leaves of Grass_, Whitman 56. _Little Prince_, St. Exupery 57. _Lord of the Flies_, Golding 58. _Lord of the Rings, Tolkien 59. _Madame Bovary_, Flaubert 60. _Man's Search for Meaning_, Frankl 61. _Mere Christianity_, Lewis 62. _Moby Dick_, Melville 63. _Monkey Wrench Gang_, Abbey 64. _My Antonia_, Cather 65. _1984_, Orwell 66. _Odyssey_, Homer 67. _Of Human Bondage_, Maugham 68. _Of Mice and Men_, Steinbeck 69. _Old Man and the Sea_, Hemingway 70. _On the Road_, Kerouac 71. _One Hundred Years of Solitude_, Garcia Marquez 72. _Origin of Species_, Darwin 73. _Paradise Lost_, Milton 74. _Plague_, Camus 75. _Pride and Prejudice_, Austen 76. _Prince_, Machiavelli 77. Qu'ran 78. _Republic_, Plato 79. _Rise and Fall of the Third Reich_, Shirer 80. _Road Less Travelled_, Peck 81. _Room of One's Own_, Woolf 82. _Sand County Almanac_, Leopold 83. _Second Sex_, de Beauvoir 84. _Seven Story Mountain_, Merton 85. _Siddhartha_, Hesse 86. _Slaughterhouse Five_, Vonnegut 87. _Small Is Beautiful_, Schumacher 88. _Steppenwolf_, Hesse 89. _Stranger_, Camus 90. _Stranger in a Strange Land_, Heinlein 91. _Structure of Scientific Revolutions_, Kuhn 92. _Tao of Physics_, Capra 93. _Tao Te Ching_, Lao Tzu 94. _Third Wave_, Toffler 95. _Ulysses_, Joyce 96. _Unsettling of America_, Berry 97. _Utopia_, More 98. _Walden_, Thoreau 99. _War and Peace_, Tolstoy 100. _Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance_, Pirsig

 

--- They give out this mimeographed sheet at the University of Wisconsin-- Milwaukee bookstore. It states: ``This list was compiled by tabulating nominations by UWM faculty, staff and students for the Select 100. It includes changes which have resulted from nominations received since the original list was released. We asked you to recommend books which you have found to be so useful and important that no one could consider himself/herself an educated or enlightened person without having read them. This is your cumulative response.'' It's pretty pop, too, I think. I've read 2., 6., 9., 12., 13., 20., 21., 24., 32., 34., 36., 39., 42., 45., 46., 48., 52., 58., 61., 62., 65., 66., 68., 69., 71., 73., 74., 76., 78., 85., 88., 89., 95., 100., for 34 out of 100. ********** Final remarks: I use lists like these as a partial guide to my own reading. I do read other things. I ``scored'' myself with each list, mostly to point up that there's tons of stuff I've not read. I will say that there is nothing on any of these lists that I haven't yet read which I do not wish to read (although I'd qualify that perhaps by saying that _The Tao of Physics_, _The Dancing Wu-Li Masters_, Ayn Rand, and Jeremy Rifkin can well wait til I've read everything else). Of the stuff I have read, I would recommend all of it as good or great books. A good fraction of it is 17-time-readable literature, especially the stuff on Adler's lists, which is what Adler tried to select for. This, and the remarkable repitition across some of these lists makes me think that there is something quite objective about this selection process. Also, I would point out that if Mike Morris says ``These are the two greatest books in the world'', you really haven't any need to listen to him very much. Whereas if T.S. Eliot says ``Dante and Shakespeare divide the world between them. There is no third.'' it ought to carry more weight. Eliot and Adler and Fadiman and Rexroth are worth listening to because they have read so much more than most of us have. There is such a thing as expertise about literature, and these guys are experts. Doesn't mean we have to agree with them finally, or even read half the stuff they have, but I think we shouldn't dismiss credit where credit is due. I'd recommend, again, _99 Novels_, _The Lifetime Reading Plan_, _How to Read a Book_, and _Classics Revisited_ and _More Classics Revisited_. They are all so much more than just the reading list. It would be neat to see such books as _100 of the Best African-American Books_ in the vein of Burgess' _99 Novels_. Or _100 Masterworks of Science Fiction_. I'd buy such reading-list books if they were to cross my path in bookstores. I've read a good bit of 20th C Latin American literature, and I like reading it alot, so I'd particularly love to see a guide to it like these. There's a difference between descriptive lexicography and prescriptive, and of course, what everybody fears is being said is that you're nobody unless you've read all these books. In none of these cases is that being said, I think. I would not use any of these lists for other than personal prescription. Actually, I think prescription has about zero place other than in the classroom, and though, as I said, I'd use it heavily in my ideal 12 years of primary education, if I could only realize that fantasy, I'd hope to lay off the prescription more and more at the university level. Actually, I think the list here that comes closest to a reasonable high-school prescriptive list is Clifton Fadiman's. That list, with additions, I think would be a wonderful core high-school curriculum. ******************* The end. (exhausted sigh) Mike Morris (msmorris@watsci.uwaterloo.ca) --- * PCB/UseNet Gateway from Sparkware #3 HEADER:USENET Path: channel1!uupsi!psinntp!uunet!cs.utexas.edu!torn!watserv2.uwaterloo.ca!wats From: msmorris@watsci.waterloo.edu (Mike Morris) Newsgroups: rec.arts.books Subject: Some Canonical Lists Message-ID: Date: Sat, 15 Aug 1992 21:32:51 GMT Sender: news@watserv1.uwaterloo.ca Organization: University of Waterloo, Waterloo, Ontario Lines: 360


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