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Thread: Contemporary books will become Literature Classics in the very far future!

  1. #16
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    The movies may help Ltor a lot more than Harry Potter movies. Peter Jackson changed narratives elements, but was very faithful to the visual, fans still can watch it in the same way they keep the illustrations. And Tolkien movie had a lot of power drawn from imagem and not text. This is not the case of Harry Potter, who will last more probally due the fan-made writtings, etc., sort like Sherlock Holmes who is bigger than all his books.

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    The weak chinese emperors were partially kept in check by what the court historians wrote (which were kept a secret even from the emperor). The emperors decided things worried about how posterity and their ancestors would judge them. Very few were successful emperors. Impetuous offspring of feminine canine like shi huangdi burnt books while making history.
    Perhaps it is the same with classics. I do not think shakespeare wrote his play to be classics for us. He tried to earn a living, be famous while keeping in the good books of the tudor rulers. I dont see how anyone can confidently write something truly great and be conceited enough to claim so. Even keats on dying had self doubt-his epitaph was here lies one whose name is writ in water.

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    Yes, but Keats doubted himself, not the idea of writting for prosperity. Shakespeare is different, he didnt wrote his play to be a "classic", even because at his time it was almost like writting as Virgil or Ovid, something he never tried. Milton in other hand, as Camões, where aware of the idea of timeless works and tried to achive it. There is not much logic, does not matter much the motivation.

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    Registered User mona amon's Avatar
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    Not marble, nor the gilded monuments
    Of princes, shall outlive this powerful rhyme; - Shakespeare, Sonnet 55
    there will be books written about Harry - every child in our world will know his name!" -J K Rowling, Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone
    I am thinking of aurochs and angels, the secret of durable pigments, prophetic sonnets, the refuge of art. And this is the only immortality you and I may share, my Lolita. - Nabakov, Lolita
    I'm guessing immortality would be high on any writer's wish list, along with money, glory, fame, appreciation and so on, though it may not have much effect on the way they write. Most writers I imagine would just write in the best way they possibly can, with one eye on the market (like Shakespeare).
    Exit, pursued by a bear.

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    Harry Potter will make into the classic like perhaps, Grimm's fairy tale. It won't be thought of as a great literary classic, but still it will be known, as one of the best fantasy story of our century without doubt. Popularity does help in some ways for a book to become a classic, but works that appeal to the whole of humanity will definitely have a bigger shot in attaining the status, than just being a popular book in a particular genre.
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    Asimov's robots series would have a better claim as 'the' product of the 20th century. Harry potter is the result of marketing - it started like enid blyton's school series and became darker and commercialised.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mal4mac View Post
    Will the films survive? I though they were pretty dire. I guess kids might disagree. But aren't there better kids films that are more likely to survive once the dust settles? Wizard of Oz, Mary Poppins,...

    Do many kids read Mary Poppins or the Wizard of Oz? Just because the film survives, it doesn't mean the book will survive.
    I don't know, but the exposure - the quality aside - will surely help. I know a lot of people like the films. Frank L Baum's books we re-published this year. I've never read him, but you can bet that the film has a lot to do with it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by luhsun View Post
    Asimov's robots series would have a better claim as 'the' product of the 20th century. Harry potter is the result of marketing - it started like enid blyton's school series and became darker and commercialised.
    That may be the point though. It may well be the factor that gives HP and TLOTR longevity.

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    Quote Originally Posted by luhsun View Post
    Asimov's robots series would have a better claim as 'the' product of the 20th century. Harry potter is the result of marketing - it started like enid blyton's school series and became darker and commercialised.
    I almost agree with you, but H.G. Wells has an similar claim, and few of his works are still remembered; although, rather ironically, The Time Machine may be a long term classic.

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    H G Wells, Jules Verne and the likes wrote sci-fi predicting the future and the dark side of humanity.
    Asimov 3 laws of robotics and their various permutations continued where frankenstein had left off, exploring how humanity and robots may work together or against each other. The foundation series was my first introduction to asimov- i bought all when i was also a poor struggling undergraduate, all paperbacks, covers now tattered with repeated readings. But foundation ia just one of the many scifi and will be forgotten like earth was during the galactic era. The robots will remain.

  11. #26
    Bibliophile JBI's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by luhsun View Post
    The weak chinese emperors were partially kept in check by what the court historians wrote (which were kept a secret even from the emperor). The emperors decided things worried about how posterity and their ancestors would judge them. Very few were successful emperors. Impetuous offspring of feminine canine like shi huangdi burnt books while making history.
    Perhaps it is the same with classics. I do not think shakespeare wrote his play to be classics for us. He tried to earn a living, be famous while keeping in the good books of the tudor rulers. I dont see how anyone can confidently write something truly great and be conceited enough to claim so. Even keats on dying had self doubt-his epitaph was here lies one whose name is writ in water.
    This is absolute nonsense. First of all, all the major histories except the first were written after not before. Much of the history has been edited and damaged especially the Shi Ji or records of the grand historian, which has extensive textual problems with a good 20% clearly written and faked into the book. The literary inquisitions of Qin Shihuang are therefore overplayed, whereas a more iconoclastic character, Xiang Yu who burned the library of xian yang to the ground is relatively revered. Confucius himself was a Censor who worked hard to purge "decadent music" from the face of the world.

    Now, to the next book. Ban Gu was actually very much a regime propagandist, with much of our knowledge of the Zwang Mang chaos bring filtered the old academics however all seem to have been old text school historians, whereas Ban Gu completely glosses over everything and takes out textual issues.

    Next set - all the post-Han histories were written post decline showing how the old regime lost their divine rights of ruler ship (Tian Ming) and worked to legitimize the succeeding regime. The Jin History, or even better, Shen Yue's Liu-Song history offer great examples. They emphasize the qualities of the imperial founder, and then describe why it declined.

    The Tang dynasty histories (of most of the Northern-Southern dynasties are filled with political propaganda). Historians are pressed to find anything about the rule of wuzetian, because her successors had her purged. Li shimin the most celebrated tang emperor murdered his brother and usurped his father - and was the most celebrated of Confucian emperors.

    The Yongle emperor of the Ming did the same thing, and to this day is celebrated as both Confucian Patron and Historical model - his usurpation of the throne went off historical records until Qing dynasty historians decided to dig it up to legitimize the succession. You will note that under Yongle, Mencius became a central text mostly because it legitimizes usurpation to an extent that Confucius doesn't. The books burned at the time were also extensive.

    Now, the Kangxi and Qianlong emperors if the Qing dynasty had a one up. There literally burned half the canon down and edited a complete works of Chinese civilization. The list of burned books is still extant and can be read online if you don't believe me. Still, these emperors are the most celebrated of the Qing dynasty and their reigns are regarded as golden ages - they are particularly revered for their Confucian ethical backgrounds.

    It seems from my understanding that there is attend between political controversy and state sponsorship. Much of Confucian and historical research in china happend under emperors with rather controversial backgrounds. The Ming history under Kangxi, the quanshusiku under Qianlong, the great books of the Song and Confucian development on the southern Song, or even the massive scholarship under Li Shimin or the much earlier Han Wudi. There is no correlation here showing emperors feared history, as the more controversial ones had the best reception and the most questionable backgrounds. (Han Wudi even had the court historian castrated).

  12. #27
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    I think C S Lewis Narnia will be remembered.
    Before sunlight can shine through a window, the blinds must be raised - American Proverb

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    Quote Originally Posted by PeterL View Post
    I almost agree with you, but H.G. Wells has an similar claim, and few of his works are still remembered; although, rather ironically, The Time Machine may be a long term classic.
    H.G. Wells is not forgotten, and more than a few of his works are remembered. (Although, even if only a few works are remembered, isn't that still a positive thing!) I just borrowed "The Invisible Man" from the library, in a new paperback edition, and it's still fresh and exciting. "War of the Worlds" has had several high impact media translations, over many decades, including Orson Welles' radio show and a film starring Tom Cruise. Bloom lists his *all* his science fiction novels as part of the canon, not just "The Time Machine", and he's not unusual in that. The Island of Dr Moreau, The First Men in the Moon, ... that's five I've remembered, I'm pretty sure that's not unusual for anyone who reads classic novels.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mal4mac View Post
    H.G. Wells is not forgotten, and more than a few of his works are remembered. (Although, even if only a few works are remembered, isn't that still a positive thing!) I just borrowed "The Invisible Man" from the library, in a new paperback edition, and it's still fresh and exciting. "War of the Worlds" has had several high impact media translations, over many decades, including Orson Welles' radio show and a film starring Tom Cruise. Bloom lists his *all* his science fiction novels as part of the canon, not just "The Time Machine", and he's not unusual in that. The Island of Dr Moreau, The First Men in the Moon, ... that's five I've remembered, I'm pretty sure that's not unusual for anyone who reads classic novels.
    Wells wrote about 100 books about 50 novels. How many have you read, or even heard of? He is mostly forgotten. What did you think of When the Sleeper Wakes or The World Set Free?
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/H._G._W...ography#Novels

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    Ah.. jdi.. the weak emperors feared history but they also try to circumvent history. Fear among chinese does not mean implacable fear of sin, fear of the omnipotent jewish god who watches and knows everything. The confucian tradition fear shame, fear of being caught. If the emperor were not discovered to change history, they gained face. If they were caught, and managed to bulldoze through brazenly, they gained even more face. They even cheated the kitchen god with sticky glutinous desert so the god's mouth would be glued shut when presenting the yearly family peccadilloes to the jade emperor.

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