Archive for March, 2012

March 15, 2012

Gulliver’s Travels by Jonathan Swift

 

Kids are often introduced to classics by giving abridged versions to read. I thought I had read Great Expectations by Charles Dickens in high school, only to realize later when I grew up that the actual novel is not about a school guy who ran into a convict in some wheat fields (or was it a neighbourhood forest) but rather a complicated tale about social stratification and class system.

If there is one classic that can be abridged to a nursery rhyme and yet merits multiple readings as a grown up, it is Gulliver’s travel.

There are many major themes in the book. Most of them are well documented elsewhere on the net. However, there is one theme that is of particular significance (at least according to me). Let us start by going over the more run of the mill themes.

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March 13, 2012

A Study in Scarlet by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle


Sherlock Holmes is hip once again. A latest series produced by the BBC (god bless them) called “Sherlock” has become a blockbuster hit in the Caucasian world, and a blockbuster hit in the engineering and MBA colleges of our country (at least that is what I have been told). The series brings Sherlock back to life in the modern day London, armed with blackberry, google and Macbook Pro.

That the series is winning new fans for Sherlock Holmes is evident from the increase in sales of his books. But the series has some charm for old timers as well. What really appeals to a Sherlock Holmes fan is that series has really managed to stay true to the vision of Arthur Conan Doyle (and even surpass him at times). This is a much bigger accomplishment that it sounds.

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March 11, 2012

Steve Jobs by Walter Isaacson

The poet’s eye, in a fine frenzy rolling,

Doth glance from heaven to earth, from earth to heaven;

And as imagination bodies forth

The forms of things unknown, the poet’s pen

Turns them to shapes, and gives to airy nothing

A local habitation and a name.

–         William Shakespeare

The savvy reader will sense a tad of desperation here. For the first post on this blog I have selected a man (and a book on that man) who is one of the most searched, googled, twittered celebrity on this planet. What can I possibly say about Steve Jobs, that hasn’t already been said? Well, I can say a lot of thing, as I feel that most of the articles and write ups on Jobs were suffering from something called a shoe-string complex.

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