Classics Club: March Meme

classics_club_buttonThe Classics Club has put up their monthly meme question:

Do you love Jane Austen or want to “dig her up and beat her over the skull with her own shin-bone”? (Phrase borrowed from Mark Twain).

1. Why? (for either answer)?

2. Favorite and/or least favorite Austen novel?

Wow, Twain, why so harsh? Seriously, I can understand a modern-day reader getting frustrated with all the endless adaptations of Austen’s work, but I’m not sure what it is about the originals that would incite such violence. Yes, they are a product of their time and reflect the preoccupations of a privileged society, for the most part. But they’re also witty and cutting and wise, and there are some great love stories in there. And who doesn’t love a great love story (Mark Twain, apparently!)?

So, no, I definitely have an appreciation for Austen. I haven’t read everything by her, which is why I have several of her books on my Classics Club list. But my favorite is definitely Persuasion. My least favorite would have to be Mansfield Park.


7 thoughts on “Classics Club: March Meme

  1. Belle Wong

    My favourite is P&P. I went through a stage where I reread P&P every year. I remember feeling like I learned something new every time. I’ve been thinking about rereading it again soon.

  2. A.M.B.

    Great response to Mark Twain! I can understand why someone might dislike Austen’s work, but to claim they’d want to desecrate her grave and use her bones as a weapon? Even as hyperbole, it’s too harsh. At a bare minimum, her detractors should realize she was talented, even if her work is not to their taste.

    I fall in the “love her” category, of course. Pride and Prejudice, the subject of Twain’s vitriol, is my favorite. It’s funny, thought-provoking, and relevant even 200 years after its publication.

  3. Roof Beam Reader

    I think Twain & Austen were on two ends of the same spectrum – Twain was bombastic, loud, obnoxious, and hilarious in the most obvious of ways (and I say this as a HUGE fan). Austen was subtle, quiet, witty, and satirical without being necessarily disrespectful. The irony of this literary feud is that, really, Twain should adore Austen, or at least what she does, as it’s the very thing Twain does, just through a different method. I think he was impatient and couldn’t be bothered to “get” her – and I think he was wrong.

  4. Sarah Says Read

    Right?! CHILL Mark Twain!

    Persuasion is fantasic 🙂 Mansfield Park is the only one I have left to read, so I hope I enjoy it! I’ve kind of been saving it… it’s not like she has any new books coming out, lol.


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