Re-Reading H.S. Required Reading

Valerie of Life is a Patchwork Quilt and Amanda at The Zen Leaf have inspired me to brainstorm all those books I read as a teenager that some high school teacher told me I had to read in order to pass the class…  Here goes, in no particular order:

1. A Tale of Two Cities – Dickens

2. Old Man and the Sea – Hemingway

3. The Pearl – Steinbeck

4.  Of Mice and Men – Steinbeck

5.  Romeo and Juliet – Shakespeare

6.  The Sound and the Fury – Faulkner

Um…..     I know there are many more…   (googling ‘typical HS reading lists‘ gives me:)

7. Red Badge of Courage – Stephen Crane

8. The Great Gatsby – Fitzgerald

9.  Black Like Me – John Howard Griffin

10. The Scarlet Letter – Hawthorne

11. Death of a Salesman – Miller (and maybe The Crucible, too)

12.  1984 – Orwell

13.   ___?____by Edgar Allen Poe – short stories, maybe?

14. The Jungle – Sinclair

15. The Red Pony – Steinbeck

16.  Our Town – Wilder

There’s more, I’m sure of it. I remember as a sophomore, we had to read the equivalent of a book a week in Honors English* and it had to be from THE LIST (the list I wish I still had) or be able to justify its inclusion to the list.   I challenged it one week with a book by Danielle Steel;  my teacher finally accepted it but I really had to argue for it. I recall being so tired of having to read old and ‘important’ stuff. Funny thing is, I can’t recall which Steel book it was even if I glance through all her titles! One of my classmates successfully got Horton Hears a Who added to the list…

More plays here than I realized.   I think we also read Macbeth and/or Hamlet.

I must say that I am SHOCKED — repeat SHOCKED!!  — that my husband says he had to read Ulysses in high school.  WHO would do that to a kid?!  He had to read Beowulf, too.  I think maybe we had a bit of Canterbury Tales but I don’t think we read the whole thing.

IF I attempt to re-read any of these, it would be The Sound and the Fury. Anyone feel like joining me?

* I read a few Irving Stone’s and many Vonneguts and stuff like Hugo’s Les Miserables for my ‘electives’. Sadly, I don’t recall reading ANY women authors. There HAD to be some, but I know I didn’t read Austen or the Brontes because that’s what the cheerleaders liked and I was waaaaay smarter than that. *roll eyes* Let it be known, I like these authors now, I do. But I didn’t read  P&P until my twenties.


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