Tuesday, April 22, 2008

The end is near.

I had my last undergraduate exam today, and likely my last university exam ever. I still have to do summer research before I can graduate, so no jumping up and down for me, but it seems like this is some sort of milestone.

This situation lends itself to reminiscences about the last four years, and on that note I've compiled a list of my favourite and least favourite books from each year. That I can remember, anyway. The earlier years are a bit hazy at this point.

First year:
Tao Te Ching
Analects of Confucius
Bhagavad Gita
Catch-22, Joseph Heller
Least: Maria Chapdelaine, Louis Hemon

Second year:
Consolation of Philosophy, Boethius
Confessions, Augustine
Republic, Plato
The Handmaid’s Tale, Margaret Atwood
The Golden Ass, Apuleius
The Divine Comedy, Dante
Least: Aquinas.

Third year (abroad):
The Duchess of Malfi, John Webster
The Jew of Malta, Christopher Marlowe
De Rerum Natura, Lucretius
Least: Cicero

Fourth Year:
The Decameron, Boccaccio
Beyond Good and Evil, Nietzsche
Into That Darkness, Gitta Sereny
Gargantua and Pantagruel, Rabelais
The Great Transformation, Karl Polanyi
The Human Condition, Hannah Arendt
Pale Fire, Vladimir Nabokov
Phenomenology of Spirit, Hegel
Book of the Courtier, Castiglione


  1. First year: I remember liking most of the Bible stuff. Especially whichever book involves someone being killed by a tent peg. And Gita Govinda! I also read Pride and Prejudice that year. :)

    I'm not sure I had a least favourite in that instance. But I did read Maria Chapdelaine in second year, and yeah, not a fan.

    Second year: What about Dante?? That and Augustine were my favourites. And Aristophanes. Also loved everything from Children's Lit. And Homer.

    Definitely second you on Aquinas, though.

    Third: loved Boccaccio, and a bunch of things you weren't here for. Othello. Die Zauberflote. Maybe Princess of Cleves? I didn't mind most of Continental Lit, especially the plays, but I have a hard time remembering them now. I think I liked Molliere.

    Hated Spenser. And A Sentimental Journey. Didn't even attempt Ariosto.

    Fourth: loved Jane Eyre, Sense and Sensibility, Tennyson. Liked Levi and Foucault. Might possibly not hate Spenser now.

    Disliked just about everything else in 4000. And Samuel Richardson's Pamela.

  2. Man, how could I forget Dante? Must add. I think it's a good sign that I seem to have liked more than I hated, right?