Little Women

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Totoro
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Little Women

Post by Totoro » 19 Mar 2014, 13:39

Actually my Girl Scout Book Club will be reading this in April. I was hoping that there might be a thread here to help us direct our discussion. Since there is not I am starting one.

I would love to hear other people's thoughts on the book. I read it about 30 years ago and will be rereading it now.
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AmandaR
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Post by AmandaR » 19 Mar 2014, 13:43

I loved that book when I was younger. I guess I am still young now, but when I was a preteen, I used to listen to it on audiobook. I remember wanting to me like Jo when I grew up. I love how determined she was. She was so self-sacrificing and loving, but at the same time, strong and an intentional dreamer. She dreamed of who she wanted to be and she did her best to accomplish that. I love that about her character. Such a fabulous book. I hope your book club enjoys it as much as I did.
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Fran
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Post by Fran » 19 Mar 2014, 14:04

Way, way back in pre-history I read this book - it wasn't one of my favouites.
As I remember I considered it a bit too preachy and goody-good & much too tame. But I was an early starter reading & having an older brother I'd already read a lot of his books so possibly I had moved on to favouring more robust reading at that stage.
It was a gift from an eldely lady which is why I finished it otherwise I doubt I would have read it at all.
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Post by gali » 19 Mar 2014, 14:15

I loved this book in my childhood and especially liked Joe. It was a bit preachy, but the good parts compensate on that.
In the case of good books, the point is not to see how many of them you can get through, but rather how many can get through to you." (Mortimer J. Adler)

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Post by TeshLewis » 22 Mar 2014, 08:15

I love this book, and so does my Mum, I'm so glad she let me read it. It's fab.

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Post by rowoody » 23 Mar 2014, 21:09

This is a book that I loved reading when I was younger. I think I will need to add this to the reading list when my daughter is a little older. My favorite character was Jo. However, I find myself often think about Beth's death. So sad.

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Post by dlachance9 » 02 Apr 2014, 16:15

It's funny-I've always disliked this book so much due to its overly didactic nature. However, as a feminist I'm also torn because the character of Jo does prove to be a decent role model for young women. I'm curious to hear others' opinions of Little Women through a feminist lens.
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Post by Aussie-reader » 02 Apr 2014, 16:38

Like Fran, I read this book way way back in time, no doubt before some of you were even born. :oops:

I did enjoy it and still remember it though - and the sequel Good Wives, I think it was called.

Of course it is not going to be a feminist book - it was written nearly 150 years ago, and obviously will reflect the customs and culture of the period.
That in itself would be an interesting comparison of life then and now.

Just a suggestion - if you get interested after reading it a spin off book is March by Geraldine Brooks. Won the 2006 Pultizer prize. Re-tells the story from the point of view of the absent father.
Really enjoyed it.

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Winter
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Post by Winter » 02 Apr 2014, 17:31

I loved this book as a kid. It is preachy, as you say, but then Joe's character was fairly modern in a lot of ways, considering. My only problem with the book was that I was always a little sad that Joe didn't love Laurie, and did not get the Amy/Laurie duo at all.
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Post by KLyons1 » 08 Apr 2014, 22:21

I re-read Little Women every few years, and always enjoy it; the March girls seem very real, and I always had fun imagining what it would be like to be in their household - so it's like visiting good friends.

Louisa May Alcott was one of the early feminists, but she also used her writing to earn a living, so she had to be careful. One of her key words is "useful" - in many of her books there comes a point when wome of the women discuss how to be useful not only by keeping their own homes well but also by doing more in the community. This was a 'safe' way for LMA to indicate that women could do more than they were currently shown as doing, while still keeping those ideas within the traditional bounds of female activities for the time.
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Post by bibliomaniac_23 » 09 Apr 2014, 06:01

I loved Little Women when I first read it at 12. Though I haven't had the chance to revisit it over the years, I remember it being one of those books that strike a chord with the reader. I particularly liked the feminist overtone of the book, though I didn't buy the hurried "happy ending" climax of Laurie and Amy.

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Post by lanielep » 19 Apr 2014, 21:40

I think it would be interesting to discuss the changing view of proper womanhood. I believe it would be good for your scouts to think about the expectations that the march sisters had compared to ones they have. Also to look at the kind of choices the girls had then compared to now.

I think it's a great book for young girls to read. It allows them to know that there are many routes to being a good strong woman without having to be perfect.

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Post by prarich » 21 Apr 2014, 00:17

I read it 2 years back too and read it with great interest. Maybe because the girls in there were about the same age or perhaps some what older than I was then. It was nice story, one that young girls could relate with.
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DEBBIE SMITH
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Post by DEBBIE SMITH » 21 Apr 2014, 23:01

This is one of my favorite books of all time. To me it reflects the strength and self-sufficiency of women in a time when society did not recognize or favor strong women. Even the men in the story support the strength of the Little Women and their mother. If read in the context of the society Alcott wrote for it is very much a feminist story, as Klyons1 states here. At that time 'preachy' was popular. I re-read Little Women every few years just to enjoy the laughter, tears, failures, accomplishments, and joy of the March family again.
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Post by samanthas2686 » 22 Apr 2014, 04:01

One of my favorite books. It showed love and how sisters can be and even when you are very poor that you still have each other.

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