Saturday, October 2, 2010

Print Matter

Day 236 of the "What are you reading, and why?" project, and Leslie Haynsworth has been reading and re-reading Jane Eyre, by Charlotte Bronte, since she was 10 years old, as I learned from reading her essay "Unbecoming Jane: Jane Eyre as Alter-Ego Gone Wrong" in the latest issue of The Common Review.

This is one of the print magazines I receive in the mail--some are subscriptions I maintain, some are gift subscriptions.  A note to poets and writers who read this blog: I know we cannot afford to subscribe to all the literary magazines to which we submit, but I try to 1) order a sample copy and 2) subscribe for at least a year if the magazine publishes me, in good faith and to help support that literary venture.  If I can't subscribe, I try to order some extra copies of the issue I'm in to send to writer friends who might submit or subscribe.  All this fluctuates with my budget, as does my ability to buy books by poets I want to support.  Sigh...  But I am trying to do the right thing!

Haynsworth's essay is delightful.  She recreates that first wonderful reading experience, at 10, that awakened her to this wild and romantic world.  And then she recreates her first college reading experience of the same book, during which she had to reconsider everything.  It's marvelous to see how she handles the challenge, and the interpretations and re-interpretations that she finds necessary.

No wonder this is a perennial.  People keep grappling with it, at all ages, and through cultural ages.

What is a book you've had to reconsider?  Loved, loved too much, learned to hate, learned to love again?

5 comments:

SarahJane said...

It's interesting how our experience of a book depends on our age/situation/perspective. I wasn't big on "Jane Eyre" when I read it at 19. Maybe I should try again (or maybe not...).

nene said...

Love your methodology and I have a request for your opinion on the following two subscriptions. You have referenced both and I'm wondering which is your preference in supporting writers? Granta Magazine;The Common Review.

In a separate note, thanks to you and your 'Wait, I Have A Blog' in that I've recently been reading some of the books, materials and blogs that you have referenced.

Kathleen said...

Oooh, nene, that's a tough one. Hmm, but here's a thought. Try Granta for a year, and seek out the table of contents online for Common Review. It has a new editor as of NOW, so you can take a look at what he does over the next year, while you see how you like Granta. Then try Common Review for a year. See which one you really don't want to do without. I love The Sun, actually!

SarahJane said...

Look! I have read this post, and at the time already the re-read was brewing...

Kathleen said...

Indeed!