The Most Overrated Classics

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Dael Reader
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Re: The Most Overrated Classics

Post by Dael Reader » 11 Jun 2018, 20:19

I think pretty much everything by Hemingway is overrated. But maybe I just don't like the guy.

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Post by mvr moorthy » 19 Jun 2018, 06:13

I could never get round to accept War and Peace, Pride and Prejudice ---they are the most overrated classics.
David Copperfield barely escapes.
Then the most underrated ones are the eminently reredable classics of Maupassant, Sister Carrie and Great Expectations

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Post by mvr moorthy » 19 Jun 2018, 23:50

Tolstoy's War and Peace is the most overrated classic.Then Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice whose themes do not measure up to classic dimensions.

The most underrated writers are Maupassant whose versatility and readability are not acknowledged to the full, and Theodore Dreiser whose work deserves greater critical attention .

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Post by bclayton13 » 24 Jun 2018, 21:37

Moby Dick is highly overrated in my opinion. It's just far too dry, and, while pages and pages of overly detailed descriptions on the practices of whaling might be historically valuable, it doesn't exactly make a masterpiece. Cut that out and maybe it would be decent... maybe.
As for underrated, I genuinely feel like the short story The Sandman by ETA Hoffman should be more widely read. I had to do a report on it for a class and found it fascinating. It was written in the 19th century, but reading it from a 21st century perspective makes it even more interesting, especially with our modern views on robots and AI.

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Post by pricklypurple » 25 Jun 2018, 08:24

I think The Great Gatsby is overrated and it seems when I was in school, it was grilled over and over. Old Man and the Sea also extremely overrated in my opinion.

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Post by Lil Reads » 25 Jun 2018, 18:45

Steph K wrote:
11 Oct 2017, 15:46
Zupanatural wrote:
maiamalanee wrote:Classics as required reading have a purpose. Besides the classic, "read this and we'll discuss it next week," that we've all been through in high school, I've taken a lot of literature classes that really make you think about the books in different ways. For me, The Great Gatsby, Moby Dick, and Pride and Prejudice are the most overrated classics.
Yes and yes, I never got the hype around either of these two. Ok, they give good insight into the societies with which they deal but there is very little to get excited about in terms of plot or style. I would also add Dracula to the overrated list- Bram Stoker conceived a great story & then proceeded to make a hash of the actual narration of it. Obviously just my opinion though ;)

As for underrated, I think the genius of Maupassant & Wilkie Collins is largely lost on 21st century readers. Ok, they were dealing with French & British society in the mid-19th so that's kind of understandable but both have an incredible ability to tell stories (often witty) which compel from start to finish.
I would have to agree with you about Dracula. It always seems to work better on film. I don't think the epistolary concept conveys the story as well as other methods could have.
I think there are two main problems that has made the movie adaptations better than the book (while I enjoyed it as the precursor to vampire literature, I still think it was some problems)
  • Stoker's female characters - he was not particularly feminist and modern adaptations have given the two female characters more depth and agency that helps with the story
  • The overall cast - an adaptation can really play with the character dynamics to create some good scenes; I still wish more of the suitors showed up in film adaptations
:coffee3-smiley: :auto-mysterymachine:

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Post by NSehra » 28 Jun 2018, 14:35

I know most would disagree with me, but I couldn't enjoy Wuthering heights. I can't understand why the characters did what they did. Everything is so sad in it.

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Post by MsLisa » 29 Jun 2018, 07:23

Black Beauty and The Swiss Family Robinson are incredibly boring. I did really enjoy the Great Gatsby and To Kill A Mockingbird. I don't think that they are overrated.

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Post by Cristal2408 » 29 Jun 2018, 11:52

In my opinion, The Old Man and the Sea is pretty overrated, but it doesn't matter, really. If a book is overrated or not depends on the reader's perspective and analysis of the book. If I really get into the deep meaning of Hemingway's book I can find that it is not as overrated as I initially thought. Now... Twilight? THAT is an overrated book, but we're only talking about classics here.
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Post by FictionLover » 30 Jun 2018, 07:30

NSehra wrote:
28 Jun 2018, 14:35
I know most would disagree with me, but I couldn't enjoy Wuthering heights. I can't understand why the characters did what they did. Everything is so sad in it.
I have a wonderful book club, where we read one classic a year. So I got to discuss Wuthering Heights with a few others. We all agreed it was not romantic at all!!

It was a book about a dysfunctional family and particularly about a man with revenge in his heart!

Very dark and disturbing.
"I love reading another reader’s list of favorites. Even when I find I do not share their tastes or predilections, I am provoked to compare, contrast, and contradict. It is a most healthy exercise, and one altogether fruitful." T.S. Eliot

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Post by FictionLover » 30 Jun 2018, 07:33

Cristal2408 wrote:
29 Jun 2018, 11:52
In my opinion, The Old Man and the Sea is pretty overrated, but it doesn't matter, really. If a book is overrated or not depends on the reader's perspective and analysis of the book. If I really get into the deep meaning of Hemingway's book I can find that it is not as overrated as I initially thought. Now... Twilight? THAT is an overrated book, but we're only talking about classics here.
I read The Old Man and the Sea in high school and really loved it. Though, of course, nothing much happens.

In general, I like Hemingway, but he is one of those authors whose personality seems to overwhelm everything he does.

I hated the Green Hills of Africa because it is filled with his personal memories and he seems like a misogynist and bigot.
"I love reading another reader’s list of favorites. Even when I find I do not share their tastes or predilections, I am provoked to compare, contrast, and contradict. It is a most healthy exercise, and one altogether fruitful." T.S. Eliot

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Post by FictionLover » 30 Jun 2018, 08:11

I have to agree that The Catcher in the Rye is overrated. I read it in HS because, I suppose, it was a type of YA literature, back in the day.

I didn't find Holden Caufield a particularly sympathetic character, but I suppose I should read it again and see what I think as and adult.

I thought Sylvia Plath's "The Bell Jar" was much a more riveting and profound portrayal of a young person struggling with self-realization and, I guess, Depression. So, I could nominate her for 'Underrated', but I think it is more 'unknown' to most people.
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Post by Cristal2408 » 01 Jul 2018, 01:15

FictionLover wrote:
30 Jun 2018, 07:33
Cristal2408 wrote:
29 Jun 2018, 11:52
In my opinion, The Old Man and the Sea is pretty overrated, but it doesn't matter, really. If a book is overrated or not depends on the reader's perspective and analysis of the book. If I really get into the deep meaning of Hemingway's book I can find that it is not as overrated as I initially thought. Now... Twilight? THAT is an overrated book, but we're only talking about classics here.
I read The Old Man and the Sea in high school and really loved it. Though, of course, nothing much happens.

In general, I like Hemingway, but he is one of those authors whose personality seems to overwhelm everything he does.

I hated the Green Hills of Africa because it is filled with his personal memories and he seems like a misogynist and bigot.
That's great. :lol: Actually, I read it in middle school, and I remember it being incredibly boring.
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Post by FictionLover » 01 Jul 2018, 09:43

Actually, I read it in middle school, and I remember it being incredibly boring.
Many times I have thought that I should go back and re-read certain books which I read as a teen or young adult, to see what I think now. However, there are so many great reads still to be read, I usually don't do it.

And actually, there are only a few books I have ever re-read and I wonder what my small list of re-reads says about me. It is: The Lord of the Rings (read probably 3 times) and The Joy Luck Club and The Kitchen God's Wife both by Amy Tan. There may be a couple more, but I don't recall them.

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Post by Jennifer Fernandez » 09 Jul 2018, 21:22

I'm with everyone who said Moby Dick was overrated. It is so slow and I feel like the charactrs are not realistic.

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