First full day back at college, and already disappointed in my peers…


I just got back to college for my first class in months.  Eng Lit.  Usually a good subject for me.

Then I found out that, in my absence, the class had studied 1984 for the novel module — and hated it.  I did that module last year.  For us, the teacher picked out A Child In Time, by that pretentious, over-sentimentalising hack, Ian McEwan.  I begged her to reconsider the selection.  I explained that I’d attempted McEwan’s stuff before on a few occasions, on the recommendations of various people with whom I subsequently severed all connection.  I told her that every time I’d tried to read anything McEwan has spunked out, less than three pages in, I invariably ended up wanting to break every last one of his fingers in at least two places, just so he can’t fucking write anything else.  I warned her that, if she made me read and analyse A Child In Time, the rest of the class wouldn’t be able to hear her teaching them over the sound of me grinding my teeth.  Hell, 1984 was one of the novels I’d put forward as a possible alternative to the shite she was pushing.

In the end, we reached a compromise.  The rest of the class did McEwan, and I got to make up my own curriculum.  I think she realised that I’d be a lot less hassle if she just let me do something I liked.  As it was, while everyone else was trudging through pompous, mediocre drivel, I got to do a compare/contrast on portrayals of consumer-culture in Brave New World and Fight Club, which w0rked out fine, and I didn’t have to kill anyone.

But that was how far I had to go to be allowed to study decent literature.  The rest of my current class got given 1984, and all they did was bitch about it.  It was too dense, too slow, too depressing, too confusing.  It was boring.  It lacked action.  It didn’t make sense.

However, one of those same ‘English Literature’ students is reading and reviewing Twilight for the Study Skills/Literacy assignment, so I guess it all makes a horrible kind of sense.

This is Newspeak.  We are the dead.

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