Friday, January 26, 2007

You mean you don't know?

OK, so editing down classic works of fiction so that ADD low to middlebrow types will read them is not ideal. But it isn't the end of civilization as these people seem to think. I, for one, will never read the edited version, because reading a shortened classic like say, Can You Forgive Her, is not reading Can You Forgive Her.

That said, what's it to me if the masses want to read the fake one? It's not like I'm going to get in a literary discussion with these people. I suppose you could argue that collective culture is wounded in some way, but I definitely fall into the more reading is good category. For some people, these books might serve as a gateway to heavier fiction. Others will happily enjoy the lite versions. Who cares? And the snobs will get yet another reason to look down on people, which is one of their favorite activities anyway.

The snobs remind me of another classic snob, the indie rock fan. You'll never be good enough to the indie rock fan, because you didn't track down the Croatian-only release vinyl single which has 10 extra seconds of feedback. You never obsessively collected every interview which explains the ironic nature of the artist's lyrics. Of course you will never weep bitter tears when a fave unknown band signs to a major label.

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