Wednesday, 17 June 2009

A real American classic, Louisa May Alcott's "Little Women"

Far away there in the sunshine are my highest aspirations. I may not reach them, but I can look up and see their beauty, believe in them, and try to follow where they lead.
Louisa May Alcott

I have began preparing the reading list for the course in English culture and literature that I am to teach next year. I actually feel quite privileged doing this job; there are so many literary texts I just love, and now I can pick and choose more or less what I want. Tonight I have tried to search for information on Louisa May Alcott's Little Women, a novel I read many, many years ago, and a film that I have seen time and time again. I guess I am a bit soft hearted; I cried when I read the novel, and I cry every time I see the film...

On a page hosted by the University of Virginia, you can find the entire novel online along with other resources. Although I do believe books are to be read on paper, rather than on a computer, an online version may come in handy if students have problems getting hold of copies, have forgotten their books (yes, that happens in my school too!), if I only want to use an extract of the novel, etc. On a page from Yale - New Haven Teachers Institute they promise various activities which can help "21st century students appreciate Alcott and Little Women." Yes, please! Web English Teacher also has resources on the novel (and a whole lot of other texts), and has information on Alcott herself, resources on her works of literature, and also online versions of her texts.
I loved the novel when I read it, and I would have liked to read it with my students. On the other hand, it is an undeniable fact that this is a really girly book, and I am not sure it would appeal all that much to the boys in my class. Any comments?
It is such a joy being able to spend some time in front of the computer doing things I do not really have to do right now. The last few weeks have been so busy, but now it is time to do things for fun. I found this quote by Alcott on the internet tonight, and believe it illustrates quite well how I am feeling at the moment: "Now I am beginning to live a little and feel less like a sick oyster at low tide." Enjoy your night! Y

1 comment:

  1. I started reading Little Women when I was a young boy--and I didn't finish it. I could probably read it all the way through now as an adult. Maybe another book would be more appropriate for boys!