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Topic: 88 Books that shaped America, From the Library of Congress< Next Oldest | Next Newest >
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PostIcon Posted on: Jun. 25 2012, 10:48 pm  Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

A list of the 88 books chosen by the Library of Congress that shaped America:

http://www.mercurynews.com/books....-shaped
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PostIcon Posted on: Jun. 26 2012, 12:37 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Can't say I've read them all, but I have read a fair share as far as the novels are concerned.  My favorites are For Whom the Bell Tolls, Native Son, To Kill a Mockingbird and The Grapes of Wrath.  Dont' know if I'll ever make it through Moby Dick in spite of a least a dozen attempts.

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PostIcon Posted on: Jun. 26 2012, 12:53 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Read 41 on the list.

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PostIcon Posted on: Jun. 26 2012, 1:23 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

I feel like a slacker with 31.  The list is a good reminder of how influential Benjamin Franklin was in his time.   I think people today see him more as a colorful peripheral character.  Some of the cited works surely contributed to that view, since for some reason, our schools teach more about his writing for popular audiences than his scientific and diplomatic work.
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PostIcon Posted on: Jun. 26 2012, 7:38 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

31. Great list and more good ones to read. When will the Library of Congress offer up all books as e-books?
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PostIcon Posted on: Jun. 26 2012, 7:54 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

To my shame, I've only read 14 of them.  I still feel that "The Great Gatsby" is very likely the worst book that I've ever finished.  I hated the characters, the plot and the style of writing.

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PostIcon Posted on: Jun. 26 2012, 1:34 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

I have read 42 of the books on the list, but I also think there are some very significant books not on the list.

Glad to see that Silent Spring made it.

It is an interesting list.  I would love to have insight to their criteria and process for including and excluding titles on the list.


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PostIcon Posted on: Jun. 26 2012, 5:47 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

I see Jack Kerouac’s On the Road made the list. A MUCH better version is The Original Scroll of On the Road. I believe it was finally published in 2006 if I recall right. It is the version that old mad Jack wanted published but they made him edit the work for ten years before it was finally accepted. It was not the document or the over all sense that he had intended with his new “experimental style” and left him somewhat embittered.

Missing from the list is the backpacking version of Kerouac’s continuing saga, The Dharma Bums. That is a rucksack classic.
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PostIcon Posted on: Jun. 26 2012, 6:42 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(Arizona @ Jun. 26 2012, 5:47 pm)
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I see Jack Kerouac’s On the Road made the list. A MUCH better version is The Original Scroll of On the Road. I believe it was finally published in 2006 if I recall right. It is the version that old mad Jack wanted published but they made him edit the work for ten years before it was finally accepted. It was not the document or the over all sense that he had intended with his new “experimental style” and left him somewhat embittered.

I think the scroll version would be more interesting, regardless of its literary merit.  His purpose was as much to see what he could do with that process as much as it was to tell a story.
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PostIcon Posted on: Jun. 26 2012, 7:47 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(Arizona @ Jun. 26 2012, 5:47 pm)
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Missing from the list is the backpacking version of Kerouac’s continuing saga, The Dharma Bums. That is a rucksack classic.

Haha. I immediately got up and put an old paperback copy in a FB and put that into my backpack. Thanks.

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PostIcon Posted on: Jun. 26 2012, 8:16 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(big_load @ Jun. 26 2012, 11:42 am)
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I think the scroll version would be more interesting, regardless of its literary merit.  His purpose was as much to see what he could do with that process as much as it was to tell a story.


That is exactly right.

I first read On the Road at my honors English teacher’s guidance as a senior in high school. I read it once again years later and a couple of years ago a good backpacking friend gave me The Scroll. What an amazing difference. By that time I had delved into what Kerouac was actually doing and what he went through when the current crop of publishers didn’t understand it. It was so far different than Tom Wolfe and the like.


(buddero @ Jun. 26 2012, 12:47 pm)
QUOTE

(Arizona @ Jun. 26 2012, 5:47 pm)
QUOTE
Missing from the list is the backpacking version of Kerouac’s continuing saga, The Dharma Bums. That is a rucksack classic.

Haha. I immediately got up and put an old paperback copy in a FB and put that into my backpack. Thanks.


I wish they would publish the original document for The Dharma Bums too. That is one of a kind. I read it once a year or so, sometimes in the wilderness.


I’m also pleased to see Allen Ginsberg’s Howl on the list. That is another masterpiece of literary work.

“I'm with you in Rockland

        in my dreams you walk dripping from a sea-journey on the highway across America in tears to the door of my cottage in the Western night”
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PostIcon Posted on: Jun. 27 2012, 2:36 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Dream on, and walk on, and keep living, my brothers.

NEMO


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PostIcon Posted on: Jun. 27 2012, 1:09 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

I wonder what other perfect BPing books there are? Call of the Wild seems like a top candidate.

"And over this great demesne Buck ruled."


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PostIcon Posted on: Jun. 27 2012, 2:02 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Why not something like Hunter S. Thompson's Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas for a different genre? Hmmm...
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PostIcon Posted on: Jun. 27 2012, 3:47 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

22, mostly because the list is cluttered up with a whole bunch of non-fiction.  :;):

Some I'm really glad to see on there: The Wizard of Oz, Red Harvest (still my favorite Hammett), and The Education of Henry Adams.

There's one in particular I'm not glad to see on the list (it's highly influential, but in a purely negative way) but if I get started on it this thread will be exiled to TPA.   :;):


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PostIcon Posted on: Jun. 28 2012, 11:55 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

It has been a long time since I have read some of these books. I never read the Federalist but plan on it.
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PostIcon Posted on: Jul. 09 2012, 7:39 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

I hate how Upton Sinclair's "The Jungle" is always whitewashed as a book about the meat-packing industry when it was really a complaint about American capitalism and a call to communist revolution. I remember the first chapter had nothing to do with meat packing and instead was about people getting scammed out of their homes by the banks and people having to drink blue-tinted milk with formaldehyde in it since it was the cheapest preservative and since the country could care less about protecting them. Another chapter was about politicians buying off the workers' bosses so that the bosses could force them to go vote a certain way on company time. It has been 15 years since I read it, but I remember meat packing being only a part of the story; the book was really about America being a broken nation.
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PostIcon Posted on: Jul. 10 2012, 4:27 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic.  Ignore posts   QUOTE


(yosemitefan @ Jul. 09 2012, 7:39 pm)
QUOTE
I hate how Upton Sinclair's "The Jungle" is always whitewashed as a book about the meat-packing industry when it was really a complaint about American capitalism and a call to communist revolution. I remember the first chapter had nothing to do with meat packing and instead was about people getting scammed out of their homes by the banks and people having to drink blue-tinted milk with formaldehyde in it since it was the cheapest preservative and since the country could care less about protecting them. Another chapter was about politicians buying off the workers' bosses so that the bosses could force them to go vote a certain way on company time. It has been 15 years since I read it, but I remember meat packing being only a part of the story; the book was really about America being a broken nation.

I'm with you on that.  Funny, how given current circumstances, some things never change.  So much of the  - maybe not all - overall message of the book is as relevant today as ever.

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