Wharton and Gone With the Wind …………

No, Wharton doesn’t have anything to do with Gone With the Wind, only in this case I’ve decided to participate in Brona’s Books The Wharton Review for May AND Corinne’s Gone With the Wind Read-Along beginning in May.  Am I insane?  Yes.  I’m hosting my Beowulf Read-Along and am reading Erewhon, Walden, Sense and Sensibility, Money for Fanda’s Zoladdition, and am still trying to finish What Is To Be Done? in order to be able to move on to Notes from the Underground.  Not to mention, I’m behind on my Austen Project, I haven’t read a book set in England for awhile that would qualify for my Reading England Challenge, I haven’t posted on my Deal-Me-In Challenge for ages, and haven’t even started thinking about The Canterbury Tales or The Brubury Tales for my project.  Yikes.  Talk about putting blinders on and just plowing full speed ahead!  I always look ahead towards summer because I have so much more reading time then, but once again, it looks like I’ll have to use it to finish books I’ve already started, rather than being able to pick new and fresh ones.  However, I am enjoying myself and that’s all that counts ……………. isn’t it??

Wish me luck!

photo courtesy of M Rezavi
Creative Commons

22 thoughts on “Wharton and Gone With the Wind …………

  1. Good luck, Cleo! Somehow, you always manage to keep up with your reading projects. I'm always impressed! I'm reading Gone With the Wind as well, and I'm already reading for the Wharton Review.

  2. Thanks, TJ! I do manage to keep up somehow, don't I? I just wish it wasn't in a such a whirlwind of sometimes frenetic reading. I need to learn to slooooow down ….. although most of the time it just doesn't seem to work ….. :-Z Glad to hear that you're in for both as well!

  3. What are you reading for Wharton?

    I almost picked up Ethan Frome, but decided that I want to focus on Walden and GWTW this month. And then what did I do? I started reading Out of Africa. But my three is nothing compared to your pile.

    Hey, if you're having fun, knock yourself out!!!

  4. I should really stop visiting your site…you just keep tempting me! At cost of deprived sleep and chores which for sure will remain undone, you will be happy to know I have joined the GWTW Read Along…all I have to do now is figure out where to find the time to read it all!

  5. Oh, I know what you mean! I think I've crumbled and am going to read a Wharton short story for this one, but at least I'll have read something else by her. I was book shopping yesterday and got even further distracted. It's good, but it's not good, if you know what I mean?! 😉

  6. Sadly, I think I might actually knock myself out! 😉

    I was going to read The Buccaneers but I think I might cave and read one of her short stories. I actually started a book of her short stories a couple of years ago which I didn't finish, so perhaps I should revisit it. In any case, I'm not completely sure yet.

    I loved Out of Africa! I picked up Dinasen's Seven Gothic Tales after I finished but I haven't read it yet.

  7. As long as you keep reading, that's the most important thing. 🙂

    Erewhon is one of my favorites. Enjoy!

  8. Poor Margaret Mitchell is going to fare not very well standing the shadows of the other authors' books. And Wharton might have been shocked to be mentioned with Mitchell in the same breath. Good luck in your eclectic reading adventures. Better you than me!

    And I reminded of what Flannery O'Connor's mother asked her once: "Why can't you write something nice like _Gone With the Wind_?" Hmmmm.

  9. I'm really enjoying Erewhon! I've read Utopia, Gulliver's Travels, Candide and now Erewhon, all by chance and all close together, yet they all fit into the same category. It's fun comparing!

  10. I'm a little hesitant ……. if I don't like Gone With the Wind, I'll lose the respect of Corinne forever! 😉 I think you just have to read it with the right mindset.

    I found this post about Mitchell and Wharton which is somewhat intriguing: https://redpickledish.wordpress.com/2015/04/28/edith-wharton-and-margaret-mitchell-would-be-rivals-or-fellow-bedfellows/

    And you've reminded me that I still need to read Flannery O'Connor. Aargh! She is in my book pile, I promise.

  11. I'm not sure. I was planning on The Buccaneers but I've recovered some sense and am leaning towards a short story. But my mind is not completely made up yet.

  12. I can't imagine why Wharton would be offended to have a fellow author's name mentioned in the same breath as her own, sir, unless you are suggesting that Wharton was a literary snob. Mitchell's style is different from Wharton's, in many ways. Mitchell laughed — a lot. That energy is throughout her work, laid alongside a dissection of oppression which has been misinterpreted as a mournful ode to the old confederacy. Her work is epic, larger than life, theatrical, while Wharton's is so exquisitely gentle it's like a painting. Both approach similar topics: the suffocation of the female. Mitchell takes it further by laying the oppression of the female strategically alongside the oppression of the African-American. I find her approach more like Austen than Wharton in that she gives the reader what he or she thinks she wants, but she is actually saying A LOT under the surface.

    The fact that a novel is incredibly fun to read naturally regulates it to the trash pile. I am learning. Mitchell actually simplified it purposefully: she loved adventure novels and felt that a novel could still just be a story: it didn't have to be the stream of consciousness style that was becoming popular in her era. I'm not sure why that's an issue: it's just a different way to present a novel.

    I don't know that I'd say Mitchell was inspired by Wharton, though she'd probably read her work and certainly could have been inspired. That she gives Scarlett a dilemma rather like Lily Bart's only underscores the fact that such a dilemma was still prevalent in Mitchell's era. I can't say how Wharton would feel, but I imagine Mitchell would be honored to have her name mentioned in the same breath as Wharton's.

    As for that article you linked, Cleo, it takes Mitchell out of context. She took her writing very seriously, but she had self-doubt. She didn't dismiss her stuff: she worked on it arduously for ten years. She asked for her manuscript back because she'd presented it to Latham all out of order, without any first chapters. She was pretty spontaneous and regretted that she hadn't submitted it more professionally. I'm not sure how that's an issue: it's called being an artist. 🙂

    I wouldn't disrespect you if you didn't like the book, Cleo! I just hope you give it a ripping good chance. Don't listen to the naysaying, and bear in mind that the way it is often interpreted is very much a response to the film version, imho. She was critiquing what she appears to support. She VERY VERY VERY strongly opposed the "oh for the old days" confederate mentality. Scarlett is a CHARACTER, as are they all. She is illustrating, not approving or supporting, in my humble opinion.

    Well, I'm no expert. Just offering my humble perspective. Lots of people love this book, so either we're all stupid, or it has something. Impenetrable logic! Cheers!!

  13. I have a million books I want to read this well too! Can't possibly read all of them, even the ones I'm desperate to read. Sigh. I'll definitely join the Beowulf read-along but sadly have to join in late with the Gone With the Wind…

  14. Fortunately Corinne's Gone With the Wind schedule goes at a slow-ish pace and is reasonably low-pressure so it works well. I think she'll just be happy if we read it, even though we may take a little longer. 🙂

  15. Thanks for the extra Mitchell information, Corinne. It really helps to have insight into the author to further enjoy the read.

    I'll certainly give it more than a chance. I was watching a How To Read A Book segment on DVD by Mortimer J. Adler, and, if I remember correctly, even though they (him and Charles van Doren) did not agree that the Southern history was accurate, they said it was one of the best structured novels ever. Pretty high praise from them. I'm looking forward to reading it!

  16. I'll be your cheersquad over the next two months as we both tackle a ridiculous amount of reading challenges 🙂

    I think it's perfectly possibly to love both Wharton & Mitchell. Eclectic is my favourite word when referring to reading !

  17. Yes, your reading is quite eclectic. It's great! I have a number of books that I've put on my TBR list thanks to you.

    Thanks! I'll keep an eye on you too and we'll see how we do. I'm determined to stick to it and get everything complete. But, as always, it's always dependent on time ……

  18. Best of luck with this!! – Such great ambitions. It's so difficult to balance your classics reading with BEA, isn't it?? I struggle constantly between new books and classics; I need to read ALL OF THE BOOKS!!! 🙂 xo, Arianna (Shelfnotes) – PS It was *wonderful* meeting you in person this weekend!!!

  19. Thanks …. I have one down and one to go. I read so many classics and so little anything else that I have to remember to take a classic-break sometimes! I think you've mistaken me for someone else though ……. I don't really know what BEA is (well, I do now because I looked it up) and unless you were in Canada on a ball field this weekend, we didn't meet. 🙁 Welcome to my blog though! 🙂

Thanks for visiting. I'd love to hear from you and have you join in the discussion!