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17
Aug 12
Fri

How to Read Victorian Novels

Victorian novels. I’m not literate enough to read them. I remember intentionally moving from 2 Unit Related English in Year 11 down a few classes to 2 Unit General English in Year 12 because Austen and the Bronte sisters were required reading. I found those early 19th century tomes impenetrable. Rohan Maitzen has written a guide on how to read them:

Take the book with you everywhere, that’s what. Bank line-ups, buses, bathrooms, those precious 8 minutes while the pasta boils — you know what to do! A few pages here, a few pages there, and next thing you know, you’re 500 pages in, with only another 200 to go.

This guide may have been helpful in high school, but more likely I suspect not. A friend bought me a copy of Middlemarch about ten years ago, and it still remains untouched.

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