Tuesday, 25 August 2015

Literary Battles.


I'm re-reading Hasek's 'The Good Soldier Svejk' , I first encountered it when doing a Literature exam at school , the  rather strange method used by 'Longlands Boy Secondary School' was that you read a set book ( think it was a Thomas Hardy ?) and then had to choose another book to read from the pile of books on the teachers desk , the only problem was - there was only one copy of each and as pupils were called out to make their selection alphabetically - there was not much choice when it was my turn ( this alphabetical method of selection used on many occasions by the school - on reflection probably blighted my academic life !) . I can't remember the other choices that were left but the bright yellow cover and the Lada drawing attracted my attention , also it was a paperback and our English teacher had an old fashioned distaste of paperbacks (this was a long time ago) , so I felt I was being revolutionary as well ! (already Hasek was casting his spell ?). As a choice of book for a exam it's very questionable ? but it was a long time ago and they did things different then ! .I can't for the life in me remember the results of the exam - I doubt it had any lasting effect on my future - but I read the book and I have been a life long fan of 'The Good Soldier' and this battles with authority and have tried to employ his principles from then on .It also gave me a lasting interest in the Austro-Hungarian army of the early 20th century. It's a long rambling book and of course was never finished - Hasek drank himself to death (and was drunk half the time he wrote the book !) . I've just found an old copy of it when clearing out some books for a charity shop and have decided to tackle it again , it will be interesting to see how I get on ! . 

4 comments:

  1. You can't argue with a pedigree like that!

    I shall look forward to a full report.

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    1. It rambles a bit but once you get into it it's not to bad . Tony

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  2. Interesting Story - always wondered where your Blog image drawing hails from - a Mr LADA Illustration...very interesting Tony. You know after all the compulsory texts at School - the Shakespere, Colleridge, Wordsworth and so forth..the only one Text which had any real bearing on my future thoughts and psychology and approach to life and a career as an adult was 'SUMMERHILL' by A.S.Niel'....I expect this is the same with Your 'Good Soldier'. KEV.

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    1. I always found 'the classics' a bit hard work , Tony

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