I didn’t make it to the library to check out books even once while I was off – imagine the deprivation! Fortunately, my mother brought me nice books to read. Thank you, Mommy!
Reading Lolita in Tehran by Azar Nafisi Though I’ve been a reader all my life, I’ve never really gotten into too much Classic Literature – mostly, it just seems so depressing. This book might just convince me to go back to those classics, as Nafisi describes her experiences leading a small group of women in reading English classics. (And we though those books were hard going, as native English speakers!) Throughout the lives of the women, their lives in the restrictive society of post-revolutionary Iran are seen through the prism of Lolita, Pride and Prejudice and The Great Gatsby. This book has been hanging out on paperback bestseller list for a while now, and it deserves its success. It really is phenomenal.
Brave New Family by G.K. Chesterton, ed. Alvaro de Silva I must confess, as a Protestant, and raving liberal Protestant at that, I was at first hesitant to read this book of essays by the acclaimed Catholic author G.K. Chesterton. It turns out that Chesterton and I have more in common than I’d thought. I really enjoyed reading his thoughts on the value of family and small town life – namely, that one must learn to get along with people different from one’s self. In the city, he argues, one naturally gravitates towards similar people. I also agree with his emphasis on the value and importance of motherhood, though not that any other employment a woman could have must be less fulfilling. But then again, if the choice at the time was factory worker or staying at home, he’d probably be closer to right. I had to stop reading when he started talking about the evils of birth control, though. And yes, I am willing to see myself as part of the surplus world population. The introduction by de Silva, about how nobody has values anymore, I also skipped. If you’re less liberal than me, or are willing to read selectively as I did, you too might find some nice food for thought in this book.