Tuesday, 18 December 2012

#124 - 127.

Tuesday, 18 December 2012 11:17
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Taking a break from revisin' to write down what I thought about some books.

Possession, by A.S. Byatt.

To be honest it's long ago enough, and I don't have a copy to hand, that I can't give a very detailed review of this - I really liked it, and I think it's a good book, but I didn't love this. Part of this may be personal (give me the novel about three doctoral candidates writing their dissertations on legal theory, who're sharing a flat and also falling in love with each other, now). Part of it comes down to a wider problem about accessibility in novels about academia; not only insofar as the hyperacademic, relentless intellectualising of the characters can get frustrating, but also to the extent that participating in academia dooms you to unlikeability. THEY'RE JUST SO UNHAPPY AND SELF-AWARE ABOUT IT THO.

Nevertheless, cracking good literary mystery, and you have to give her lots of points for writing all the poetry (which was mostly good enough to convince you they were classics). I did enjoy that Byatt was reflective enough about the pitfalls of academia to skewer everyone who came into to the picture, even her protagonists, for it. And that's sort of all I have to say?

The Archaeology of Knowledge, by Michel Foucault.

This entire review is 'Idgi... 'I'm going to criticise the shit out of it anyway' )

The Rule of Law, by Tom Bingham.

Lord Bingham represent )

Silent House, by Orhan Pamuk.

If I gave out grades for novels, this would probably be a B. )

PS. I'm really tempted to review all my law books but I probably shan't, hahaha! That being said: John Eekelaar's Family Law and Personal Life is very good, but why doesn't he (and a bunch of other academics) ever acknowledge the great intellectual debt they owe to Martha Nussbaum and Philippa Foot?

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