What is the worst thing you ever read in High School?

ShaggyMarco

Well-Known Member
I thought we could take this both ways.

For me, I think it is probably Metamorphisis by Franz Kafka.

The Return of the Native is a close runner up. You hate your life? Fine, then MOVE AWAY! NOTHING IS KEEPING YOU THERE!

What about you? What have teachers inflicted on you?
 

compound

Well-Known Member
The Return of the Native is a close runner up. You hate your life? Fine, then MOVE AWAY! NOTHING IS KEEPING YOU THERE!
Wait a sec... Is this statement directed at Diggory, Clym, Tamsin, or Eustacia?

Because only Clym had the option of moving away. The others were more or less trapped (by their social position) into proscribed roles, which were relatively inescapable, given the extent to which they had internalized the standards expected of them.

I'll concede it's hardly a perfect (or entertaining) read, but I don't think the characters' dilemmas are quite as simple as you're making it sound.
 

DIrishB

The Timeline Guy
I really disliked The Great Gatsby. I just found it dull, slowly-paced, and self-important.
 

ShaggyMarco

Well-Known Member
Wait a sec... Is this statement directed at Diggory, Clym, Tamsin, or Eustacia?

Because only Clym had the option of moving away. The others were more or less trapped (by their social position) into proscribed roles, which were relatively inescapable, given the extent to which they had internalized the standards expected of them.

I'll concede it's hardly a perfect (or entertaining) read, but I don't think the characters' dilemmas are quite as simple as you're making it sound.

Honestly, I didn't internalize the book well enough when I read it senior year to remember, though I am pretty sure that was mainly targeted at Clym. I mostly remember my sentiment as I read the book.

I was very against people just accepting what society's standards expected of them and very in favor of people throwing off society's ecpectations in order to seek personal fulfillment.

I might have to give the book another try with an older and wiser mind, but 18 year old ShaggyMarco hated it.
 

Mattimeo84

Well-Known Member
i hated most Dickens and Shakespeare in high school

They are just way too touted and over praised too much.

I did take a college level Shakespeare class, it somewhat helped, but the teacher was an idiot, she said 'umm' "ahh' or 'uhh" 197 times in 25 min. She made us retell 7 stories in one flowing narrative, it was terrible, god awful even.

I just haven't been able to get back into Shakespeare since
 

TwilightEL

Well-Known Member
I really disliked The Great Gatsby. I just found it dull, slowly-paced, and self-important.

Totally. I mean... Nick doesn't do a single thing in the entire story. Replace him with a third-person narrator and nothing changes. Well, Gatsby will have to come up with a different creepy plan to stalk Daisy, but he can use Jordan for that--you know, so she'll have a point in the story.

I read The Life of Pi on my own and hated it, but then the school required us to read it over summer. I didn't, I just used Wikipedia to refresh my memory about the plot and characters. Does it still count?
 

Joe Kalicki

Well-Known Member
I don't remember greatly disliking anything I read for school.

I didn't finish Ordinary People, though, so I'll go with that.

Oh wait, no, I hated The Chocolate War.
 

Scarecrow

Well-Known Member
Atlas Shrugged

OH MY GOD, **** AYN RAND!

I hate, hate all of Rand's stories. The worst part is, I love the ideas within them. But I cannot stand the pretentiousness that oozes from every page...

The Fountainhead, Atlas Shrugged, Anthem...Good Lord.
 

Gothamite

Well-Known Member
Lies of Silence, The Silent People, (there might be a pattern here!) The Silver Sword (guess not), and How Many Miles to Babylon?

All examples of plotless, over-rated rubbish.
 

Planet-man

Well-Known Member
The main ones that spring to mind are The Secret Under My Skin, Frankenstein and Saint Joan.

The Secret Under My Skin was an absolute disgrace. It's the most piss-poor, patronizing, removed and Canadian example of Science Fiction I've seen to date. The plot is atrociously dull and predictable and all in all it was just painful to read. My English teacher at the time said he thought it was awful as did every set of students that he'd had to have read it, but it was an obligatory part of the ciriculum so we had to. Honestly, the fact that this **** is forced down our throats while nothing by Bradbury, Dick, Clarke or Wells is on the list is both nauseating and alarming. Sci-Fi is one of THE most valuable creations of humankind and the people responsible for education have no idea what to do with it.

Frankenstein, although obvious why it was such a big deal at the time, was extremely boring, murkier than a swamp, bizarrely paced and featuring some of the most asinine plot points of any story I've seen. Also, Shelly's lack of both story structure and geographical knowledge was responsible for one of the most riotus class periods I've ever had, as our teacher deconstructed how ridiculous every plot point in two or three consecutive chapters was, in a manner that would've made Cracked.com proud.

Saint Joan was just plain old boring and unappealing to me. Made me dread English, which is usually among my favourites, for a solid month.
 

Volunteer Fire Detective

Well-Known Member
I hated A Separate Peace. Our teacher made this huge deal about "what the tree symbolized," and when the day came to finally discuss it, it turns out it's just whatever you want it to symbolize. Stupid, stupid, stupid book. And those guys were totally gay.

A close runner-up would have to be Romeo and Juliet. And this is coming from someone who loves Shakespeare. But, having read the masterpieces that are Macbeth and Hamlet, I feel that he was just slacking off with that one.

I would also say Great Expectations, except when I finished that, I realized that, if you can sort through all of the stupid Dickenisms (Example: My nickname is Pip, and I'm going to spend the next chapter explaining why), it actually has a pretty neat story.


And, just to balance things out, my favorites would have to be The Awakening, Prometheus Bound, The Wild Duck, Things Fall Apart, and, of course, 1984.
 

Planet-man

Well-Known Member
Oh yeah, Romeo And Juliet was a stinker. How people still regard it as one of the greatest love stories of all time is insane to me. Shakespeare In Love is a much better love story than what it's paying homage too, and Jim and Pam from The Office millions of times better still.

Romeo And Juliet only works if you think of it as a satire of shallow, dramatic, fake teenage infatuation-love. I actually wrote my essay on it about that. Do Romeo and Juliet even have one conversation in the entire play?! Not counting descriptions of how badly they want to swim in each other's eye and stuff, of course. It's not love.
 

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