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Publisher's Summary

Join three literary scholars and award-winning professors as they introduce you to dozens of short masterpieces that you can finish - and engage with - in a day or less. Perfect for people with busy lives who still want to discover -or rediscover - just how transformative reading can be, these 36 lectures range from short stories of fewer than 10 pages to novellas and novels of around 200 pages. Despite their short length, these works are powerful examinations of the same subjects and themes that longer "great books" discuss.

And with three great professors coming together to offer their own looks at literature, you'll get a multitude of ways to approach and think about grand human themes, including

  • the nature of love and the mysteries of fate;
  • the riddle of identity and the trials of growing up;
  • the complex ties between individuals and their societies;
  • the ways we make sense of personal and public history.

In the company of these three professors, you'll also approach the evolution of the modern novel, the development of literary genres such as graphic novels and creative nonfiction, the role of politics and culture in inspiring authors, and much more.

What's more, by exploring literature through three perspectives instead of one, you'll get an opportunity to see how literature professors - just like everyone else - approach and read books in their own unique way. It's like getting three distinct learning experiences, all in one single, affordable package.

PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying reference material will be available in your My Library section along with the audio.

©2012 The Teaching Company, LLC (P)2012 The Great Courses

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Story

Awesome lectures!

Any additional comments?

This is one of my favorite literature sets from Great Courses. I loves the mix of speakers, opinions, selections . . . really wonderful teachers, all of them!

13 of 17 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

A great team of lecturers

I've known for a while that Arnold Weinstein is fantastic lecturer. But I am glad to have been introduced to the other two professors through this team-taught course. I can't wait to look for other courses by Allen and Voth.

7 of 9 people found this review helpful

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  • Performance
  • Story

Stories not included, only discussed

The analysis is certainly very interesting and good but the short stories themselves are not actually read during the lectures. To properly enjoy this you need to start a lecture until you hear what work they are discussing, then stop listening before they spoil the whole story. Then, go look up that work and read/listen to it before returning to the lecture. Very tedious. This would be a much better course if it were interleaved with readings of the actual stories.

99 of 137 people found this review helpful

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  • Performance
  • Story

"White Sagasso Sea" outshines all!

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

It's a perfect opportunity to widen your literary horizon. If you dare tread on unfamiliar area and are not afraid of fresh thought, this lecture is the one for you.

What did you like best about this story?

The introduction of "White Sagasso Sea" is the crown jewel.

Which character – as performed by the narrators – was your favorite?

Antoinette Cosway, aka Bertha Mason in "Jane Eyre" is my favorite.

Any additional comments?

It takes about half an hour to listen to one chapter, another day or two to read the themed novel. But it would take at least one week to fully absorb the emotion yelled to you by the character through plain yet magic words. Thank you, professor Emily Allen.

6 of 10 people found this review helpful

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  • Performance
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Subject

This is not what I expected and I can not bring myself to finish listening.

2 of 11 people found this review helpful