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Thread: Are you a literature snob?

  1. #1
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    Are you a literature snob?

    I was called snobbish today, because I haven't read Harry Potter nor Twilight. A couple of ladies (I'm a gentleman) were discussing the stories at lunch and asked if I've I was in to them. "No", I said. "I'm a 34 year old man".

    Are you a literary snob?
    No man should die without first reading the world's greatest literature.

  2. #2
    Ecurb Ecurb's Avatar
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    I haven't read Twilight, although I finally broke down and read Harry Potter. Despite loving children's books, I boycotted the Potter series for a while because I didn't like the fact that they translated the books from English into American. "Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone" became "Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone", as just one example. It seems to me that American children are smart enough to learn English terms.

    However, I finally broke down and read the books. The first couple were pretty good, combining two excellent literary genres: the British Public School genre and the Fantasy genre. The Hogwarts kids in the first couple of books feared getting caught sneaking out of the dormitory after hours more than they feared being killed by Voldemort, which was both funny and an insightful view of the nature of children. However, Voldemort was a mediocre villain, so the books went downhill when they began emphasizing the battle with Voldemort over Hogwarts shenanigans.

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    Captain Azure Patrick_Bateman's Avatar
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    Eerrrrrrrr YEAH!!!!
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    Alea iacta est. mortalterror's Avatar
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    Next, you're going to tell us you aren't into Justin Bieber.
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    Justifiably inexcusable DocHeart's Avatar
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    I'm not a snob, they're just ignorant.
    Of all the gin joints in all the towns in all the world, she walks into mine...

  6. #6
    Registered User kiki1982's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DocHeart View Post
    I'm not a snob, they're just ignorant.
    Yup, happy are the ignorant.
    One has to laugh before being happy, because otherwise one risks to die before having laughed.

    "Je crains [...] que l'âme ne se vide à ces passe-temps vains, et que le fin du fin ne soit la fin des fins." (Edmond Rostand, Cyrano de Bergerac, Acte III, Scène VII)

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    How we can make this a genuine Harry Potter thread, so we can come latter and complain about another Harry Potter thread ?

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    Skol'er of Thinkery The Comedian's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mortalterror View Post
    Next, you're going to tell us you aren't into Justin Bieber.
    Ha! Nice. And yeah, I'm sort of a snob. Not everything that I read has to be Dostoevsky, but best-sellers and teenie novels are not for me.
    “Oh crap”
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  9. #9
    Registered User Emil Miller's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Razeus View Post
    I was called snobbish today, because I haven't read Harry Potter nor Twilight. A couple of ladies (I'm a gentleman) were discussing the stories at lunch and asked if I've I was in to them. "No", I said. "I'm a 34 year old man".

    Are you a literary snob?
    The first question that comes to mind is how old are the ladies?
    The second is why does anyone, apart from children, read it anyway?
    I can honestly say that were I an eleven-year-old, I would find H. Potter infantile, by the time I was nine I had already read Robinson Crusoe and Treasure Island. It's not that you are a snob but rather that the females concerned are suckers for the Random House sales technique.
    "L'art de la statistique est de tirer des conclusions erronèes a partir de chiffres exacts." Napoléon Bonaparte.

    "Je crois que beaucoup de gens sont dans cet état d’esprit: au fond, ils ne sentent pas concernés par l’Histoire. Mais pourtant, de temps à autre, l’Histoire pose sa main sur eux." Michel Houellebecq.

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    I'm a literature snob but only against pretentious literature. I've read the Harry Potter series and the Twilight series. This is because I don't view them as 'pretentious' literature. To me, they are just entertainment. I do get pissed off though when people act all pretentious and claim that the Harry Potter books and Twilight are written well because they are trash, just enjoyable trash. I can understand why both these series would not appeal to a man.

    I also enjoy reading romances, mysteries and fantasy although I always keep in mind that they are entertainment literature.

    So what am I snobbish against? Mostly popular contemporary fiction. I can't stand Jodi Picoult and Nicholas Sparks (both use cheap emotional tricks) and I can't help but be skeptical over anything that Oprah Winfrey recommends or that's on those Bookseller Top 100 lists.

  11. #11
    Card-carrying Medievalist Lokasenna's Avatar
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    Am I a literary snob? Probably.

    The point is to make a distinction between texts that are good and texts that are popular. These needn't be mutually exclusive, but they often are. This is because, in order to be popular, a writer has to (in some sense) pander to the lowest common denominator (i.e. idiocy), and this reduces the overall quality of the work. If any two-bit moron with half-a-brain is expected to 'get it', then its intellectual and artistic merits cannot be that high.

    I read the first four Harry Potter books in my childhood with fervent ardour, but by the time the fifth came along I had long since outgrown them, and come to the realisation that there was infinitely better literature out there.

    Is it snobbish to have a realistic opinion of a writer's literary merits and capabilities?
    "I should only believe in a God that would know how to dance. And when I saw my devil, I found him serious, thorough, profound, solemn: he was the spirit of gravity- through him all things fall. Not by wrath, but by laughter, do we slay. Come, let us slay the spirit of gravity!" - Nietzsche

  12. #12
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    To the average, reader, most definitely, and damn proud of it, too.

    On these forums, though? No. Really gotta amp up the snobbishness to stick out on here.

  13. #13
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    Wait, wait...

    that is not how it is played. You cann't say if you are a snob or not. It is not that easy. You must find other snob and he must call you snob. Otherwise, you are just pretencious. In this case, here, Mortal, me, JBI, Stlukes, Jozzany, etc must call you a snob and trade some ironic pointless jabs with you.

    So, you people just forget it.

  14. #14
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    No; I appreciate canonical works because I see the beauty that lies beneath them. As a budding author with many fascinating ideas and less fascinating ability as of now, I find landmark works as valuable to showing what works to what degree.

    But if being a snob means reading Calvino over Sparks, then sure.

  15. #15
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    My trump card: I'm elitist, and can make a better literary argument better than 97.7% of active online posters.

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