Tuesday, 22 November 2011

What We Been Reading

Well, to be honest, not a lot by our usual standards. My time has been taken up in recent months by studies with the Open University. I am in the middle of a Humanities Degree and hoping to pick up a Diploma in Music along the way, and there's quite a lot of reading and online activity involved. This is an area in which I am self-taught so I am having to start from scratch and somehow incorporate my existing haphazard and imperfect musical knowledge into the 'proper' way of doing things.
Be that as it may, M'Lud, I have managed to fit in a couple more volumes of Chekhov's short stories and another Zane Grey novel 'The Last of the Plainsmen'*. I guess I'm about half-way through Chekhov's stories now and I'm starting to spot when he's being humorous. Believe it or not, but Chekhov's writings also have musical qualities. See: Bartlett, R., (1998), Sonata Form in Chekhov’s ‘The Black Monk’, in Intersections and transpositions: Russian music, literature, and society, Wachtel, A.B. (ed.), Evanston, Illinois, USA, Northwestern University Press.
Just at the minute though I am in the middle of Terry Pratchett's latest outing 'Snuff'. Not so many laugh out loud moments in this one so far, and he seems to be using goblins as an allegory for the xenophobic fear of 'otherness'.  Erm, that'll be racial discrimination to you.
* You can download Zane Grey at Project Gutenburg

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