Saturday, August 7, 2010

Part I: Literature

When I was in junior high I ripped a BYU Recommended Reading list for English Majors out of the Church News. I still have it (somewhere), all tattered, yellow and worn. I have read many of the books on that list through the years, not all, but many. Some I attempted too early in life, they were way beyond my reader maturity and I shelved them until I was older. Some (a great many some) I’m still hoping to get to. My reading preferences have been and continue to be totally eclectic. Still, if we are serious about our autodidactic pursuits then lists can certainly direct us.

So, drum roll here, the 6 categories (Literature, Art, Music, Theatre, Film and Science) from BYU’s Honors Program list (2008 version). Not exhaustive but an amazing compilation. I am hoping to interest my girls in joining me and make a dent in the list.

So, from the depths of my computer files, where I cut and pasted from the pages of BYU, here is Part I. I’ll post the remaining categories every few days or so. I like that the list includes literature in the social sciences as well as non-western and women authors. Oh, and if you’re wondering where to get all these books, a great many can be found online. Check out Harvard classics and Gutenberg.
(all the Harvard Classics for free)

No excuse now.

I. Literature (no Drama in this list, shows up later in the Theatre section)
Key for abbreviations: NW=non-Western; C=author of color; W=woman author ; SS=social science

Aesop, Fables
Aristotle, Nicomachean Ethics; Politics (SS); Poetics
Cicero, On Friendship; On Duties; selected letters The Epic of Gilgamesh
Epictetus, Manual (Enchiridion); Discourses
Hesiod, Theogony; Works and Days
Herodotus, The Histories* (SS)
Homer, Iliad; Odyssey
Josephus, The Jewish War; Antiquities of the Jews Livy, History of Rome* (SS)
Lucretius, On the Nature of Things
Marcus Aurelius, Meditations
Ovid, Metamorphoses
Petronius, Satyricon
Plato, Apology; Crito; Phaedrus; Protagoras; Symposium; Republic (SS)
Plutarch, Lives* (at least two)
Sappho (W), Poems
Suetonius, Lives of the Caesars
Tacitus, Annals
Thucydides, Peloponnesian War (SS)
Virgil, Aeneid
Xenophon, Hellenica; Anabasis (SS)

Early Christian and Medieval
Anselm of Canterbury, Proslogion; Why God Became Man
Thomas Aquinas, Summa Theologiae*
Augustine, Confessions; City of God*; On Free Choice of the Will Beowulf
Boccaccio, Decameron*
Boethius, Consolation of Philosophy Chanson de Roland (Song of Roland)
Chaucer, Canterbury Tales*; Troilus and Criseyde
Chrétien de Troyes, Yvain; Erec and Enide
Christine de Pisan (W), Book of the City of Ladies
Anna Comnena (W), Alexiad
Dante, Divine Comedy*
Eusebius, History of the Church from Christ to Constantine
Gottfried von Strassburg, Tristan and Isolde
Guillaume de Lorris and Jean de Meun, The Romance of the Rose*
Heloise (W), The Letters of Abelard and Heloise
Sir Thomas Malory, Le Morte D’Arthur*
Niccolò Machiavelli, The Prince Marie de France (W), Lais
Moses Maimonides, A Guide for the Perplexed Nibelungenlied
Nicolas of Cusa, On Learned Ignorance Poema del Cid
Sagas of the Old Norse, Njal’s Saga; Laxdoela Saga Sir Gawain and the Green Knight
Snorri Sturluson, Prose Edda, Egil’s Saga
Wolfram von Eschenbach, Parzival
William of Ockham, Philosophical Writings*

Renaissance and Reformation
Ariosto, Orlando Furioso*
Jean Calvin, Institutes (SS)
Castiglione, The Courtier*
Cellini, Autobiography
Erasmus, Praise of Folly; Enchiridion; On the Free Will
Guicciardini, The History of Italy (SS)
Martin Luther, Three Treatises; Commentary on Romans; The Bondage of the Will
Machiavelli, The Prince (SS); Discourses on Livy; The Art of War
Marguerite de Navarre (W), Heptameron
Montaigne, Essays*
Thomas More, Utopia (SS)
Petrarca, Canzoniere*; My Secret; selected letters, including “Ascent of Mt. Ventoux”
Pico della Mirandola, Oration on the Dignity of Man
Rabelais, Gargantua; Pantagruel
William Shakespeare, Sonnets
Sidney, Astrophil and Stella; Defense of Poesy
Spenser, The Faerie Queene*
Tasso, Jerusalem Delivered*
William Tyndale, The New Testament in English

17th and 18th Centuries
Francis Bacon, Essays; Advancement of Learning
Jeremy Bentham, “Utilitarianism”(SS) and two other essays
George Berkeley, Three Dialogues between Hylas and Philonous (SS); Analyst; Querist (SS)
James Boswell, Life of Samuel Johnson
John Bunyan, Pilgrim’s Progress
Edmund Burke, Reflections on the Revolution in France (SS)
Cervantes, Don Quixote
Daniel Defoe, Robinson Crusoe; Moll Flanders
John Donne, Songs and Sonnets; Devotions upon Emergent Occasions
Jonathan Edwards, Works
Henry Fielding, Tom Jones; Joseph Andrews
Benjamin Franklin, Autobiography
Edward Gibbon, Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire* (SS)
Thomas Hobbes, Leviathan
David Hume, Enquiry Concerning Human Understanding; Dialogues Concerning Natural Religion; Essays
Thomas Jefferson, Declaration of Independence
Samuel Johnson, Rasselas
Immanuel Kant, Critique of Pure Reason; Critique of Practical Reason; Critique of Judgment
Mme. de La Fayette (W), The Princess of Clèves
John Locke, Essay Concerning Human Understanding (SS)
James Madison, et al., The Federalist Papers; U.S. Constitution
John Milton, Paradise Lost; Areopagitica
Charles Montesquieu, The Spirit of Laws (SS)
Thomas Paine, Common Sense (SS)
Blaise Pascal, Pensées
Alexander Pope, Rape of the Lock; Essay on Man
Joshua Reynolds, Discourses
Samuel Richardson, Pamela
J. J. Rousseau, Confessions; Social Contract (SS)
Adam Smith, The Wealth of Nations (SS)
Jonathan Swift, Gulliver’s Travels
Voltaire, Candide; Philosophical Dictionary
Mary Wollstonecraft (W), A Vindication of the Rights of Woman

Romanticism and 19 Century
Matthew Arnold, Culture and Anarchy
Jane Austen (W), Pride and Prejudice; Emma; Sense and Sensibility
William Blake, Songs of Innocence/Songs of Experience
Charlotte Bronte (W), Jane Eyre
Emily Bronte (W), Wuthering Heights
Elizabeth Barrett Browning (W), Sonnets from the Portuguese
Robert Browning, three dramatic monologues
Jakob Burckhardt, The Civilization of the Renaissance in Italy (SS)
Lord Byron, Don Juan; Childe Harold’s Pilgrimage
Thomas Carlyle, The French Revolution
Lewis Carroll, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland; Through the Looking Glass
Mary Chesnut (W), Mary Chesnut’s Civil War
Kate Chopin (W), The Awakening
Samuel Taylor Coleridge, Rime of the Ancient Mariner; “Kubla Khan” and two other poems
Charles Dickens, David Copperfield; Hard Times; Bleak House, Great Expectations
Emily Dickinson, Poems
Fyodor Dostoyevsky, Crime and Punishment; Brothers Karamazov
Frederick Douglass (C), Narrative of the Life
Alexandre Dumas, The Count of Monte Cristo
George Eliot (W), Middlemarch; Adam Bede
Ralph Waldo Emerson, “The American Scholar”; Nature
Gustave Flaubert, Madame Bovary
Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, Faust I; Faust II
Thomas Hardy, Tess of the d’Urbervilles; Jude the Obscure
Nathaniel Hawthorne, Scarlet Letter; The Marble Faun; any two stories
G. F. W. Hegel, Phenomenology of Mind; Philosophy of History (SS)
O. Henry, Short Stories
Friedrich Hölderlin, any three poems
Victor Hugo, Les Misérables
Henry James, Turn of the Screw; Portrait of a Lady
Sarah Orne Jewett (W), Country of the Pointed Firs
John Keats, “Ode on a Grecian Urn” and two other poems
Søren Kierkegaard, Fear and Trembling; Sickness unto Death
Thomas B. Macaulay, History of England
T. R. Malthus, Essay on the Principle of Population (SS)
Karl Marx, Communist Manifesto (SS); Capital (SS)
Guy de Maupassant, short stories
Herman Melville, Moby Dick; Billy Budd
J. S. Mill, Utilitarianism; On Liberty;Principles of Political Economy (all SS)
Friedrich Nietzsche, Thus Spoke Zarathustra; Birth of Tragedy; Beyond Good and Evil
Edgar Allen Poe, complete poems or short stories
Alexander Sergeevich Pushkin, Eugene Onegin
Josiah Royce, The World and the Individual
Arthur Schopenhauer, The World as Will and Representation
Mary Shelley, Frankenstein
Percy Bysshe Shelley, three poems; Defense of Poetry
Bram Stoker, Dracula
Harriet Beecher Stowe (W), Uncle Tom’s Cabin
Alfred Lord Tennyson, In Memoriam; Idylls of the King; “Ulysses” and two other poems
William Makepeace Thackeray, Vanity Fair
Henry David Thoreau, Walden; Civil Disobedience (SS)
A. C. de Tocqueville, Democracy in America (SS)
Leo Tolstoy, War and Peace; Anna Karenina
Mark Twain, Huckleberry Finn
H. G. Wells, The Time Machine; Invisible Man
Oscar Wilde, The Picture of Dorian Gray
William Wordsworth, “Ode: Intimations of Immortality” and two other poems; The Prelude*
Walt Whitman, Leaves of Grass*; Song of Myself (SS)
Emile Durkheim, Suicide (SS)
Alfred Marshall, Principles of Economics (SS)
David Ricardo, Principles of Political Economy and Taxation (SS)

20th and 21st Centuries
Henry Adams, The Education of Henry Adams
Jorge Luis Borges, Ficciones; Labyrinths
Vera Brittain (W), Testament of Youth
Martin Buber, I and Thou
Pearl Buck, The Good Earth
Samuel Butler, The Way of All Flesh
Italo Calvino, If on a Winter’s Night a Traveler
Joseph Campbell, The Power of Myth
Albert Camus, The Stranger; The Plague
Willa Cather, Death Comes for the Archbishop; My Antonίa; Song of the Lark; The Professor’s House
Joseph Conrad, Heart of Darkness; Lord Jim
Annie Dillard (W), Pilgrim at Tinker Creek
T. S. Eliot, The Waste Land; Four Quartets
Ralph Ellison (C), Invisible Man
William Faulkner, The Sound and the Fury; Absalom, Absalom; “The Bear” and two other stories
F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby
Victor Frankl, Man’s Search for Meaning
Sigmund Freud, Beyond the Pleasure Principle; Interpretation of Dreams; Civilization and Its Discontents (all SS)
Rayna Greed, ed., That’s What She Said (collection of writings by Native American women [W/C])
Alex Haley, Roots
Martin Heidegger, Introduction to Metaphysics; Being and Time
Ernest Hemingway, For Whom the Bell Tolls; The Sun Also Rises
Hermann Hesse, Siddhartha; The Glass Bead Game
Langston Hughes (C), selected poems
Zora Neale Hurston (W/C), Their Eyes Were Watching God; Dust Tracks on a Road
Aldous Huxley, Brave New World
William James, Pluralism; The Will to Believe; The Varieties of Religious Experience (all SS)
James Joyce, Dubliners; Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man; Ulysses
Franz Kafka, Metamorphosis; The Trial; The Castle
John Maynard Keynes, The General Theory of Employment, Interest, and Money
Martin Luther King (C), “Letter from Birmingham Jail”
Harper Lee, To Kill a Mockingbird
Doris Lessing (W), The Golden Notebook
C. S. Lewis, any one of the following: Till We Have Faces, The Great Divorce, The Screwtape Letters, Surprised by Joy, Mere Christianity, Miracles
Primo Levi, If this is a Man (Survival in Auschwitz)
Nelson Mandela, Long Walk to Freedom
Thomas Mann, Death in Venice; Magic Mountain
Gabriel Garcia Marquez, One Hundred Years of Solitude
N. Scott Momaday (C), The Way to Rainy Mountain
Toni Morrison (W/C), Song of Solomon; Beloved
Reinhold Niebuhr, The Nature and Destiny of Man
Flannery O’Connor (W), any two short stories
Tillie Olsen (W), Tell Me a Riddle; Silences
George Orwell, Animal Farm; 1984
Wilfred Owen, any four war poems
Marcel Pagnol, My Father’s Glory; My Mother’s Castle
Alan Paton, Cry, the Beloved Country
Katherine Anne Porter (W); Pale Horse, Pale Rider; Ship of Fools
Marcel Proust, Swann’s Way or another novel from Remembrance of Things Past
Ayn Rand, Atlas Shrugged; The Fountainhead
Erich Maria Remarque, All Quiet on the Western Front
Rainer Maria Rilke, Sonnets to Orpheus; Duino Elegies
John Steinbeck, The Grapes of Wrath
Lytton Strachey, Eminent Victorians
Laurel Thatcher Ulrich (W), A Midwife’s Tale; Good Wives
J.R.R. Tolkein, The Lord of the Rings trilogy
Derek Walcott (C), Omeros; any three poems
Alice Walker (W/C), The Color Purple
Eudora Welty (W), Delta Wedding; Losing Battles; The Ponder Heart; any two short stories
Edith Wharton (W), Ethan Frome; Age of Innocence
E. O. Wilson, On Human Nature
Ludwig Wittgenstein, Philosophical Investigations
Virginia Woolf (W), Mrs. Dalloway; To the Lighthouse; The Waves; A Room of One’s Own
Richard Wright (C), Black Boy
Elie Wiesel, Night
William Butler Yeats, any four poems
Additional works from the social sciences:
Jacob Bronowski, Ascent of Man (SS)
John Corner, The Life of Plants (SS)
F. A. Hayek, Road to Serfdom; Constitution of Liberty (both SS)
J. R. Hicks, Value and Capital (SS)
T. C. Koopmans, Three Essays on the State of Economic Science (SS)
Thomas Kuhn, The Structure of Scientific Revolutions (SS)
Richard Lewontin, Human Diversity (SS)
Paul A. Samuelson, Foundations of Economic Analysis (SS)

Other Traditions
Chinua Achebe, Things Fall Apart
Mongo Beti, The Poor Christ of Bomba
Buchi Emecheta, Head Above Water
Chiekh Hamidou Kane, Ambiguous Adventure
Ngugi Wa Thiong’o, Devil on the Cross
Wole Soyinka, The Interpreters

Lao Tzu, Tao-te Ching
Ssu-ma Ch’ien, Selections from the Grand Historian (Watson translation)
Li Po and Tu Fu, selected poems
Confucius, Analects
Ts’ao Hsüeh-Chin (Cao Xueqin), Story of the Stone (Dream of Red Mansions)*
Shui hu chuan (All Men Are Brothers, Pearl S. Buck translation)
Cheng’en Wu, The Monkey*
Lu Xun, Diary of a Madman and Other Stories
Sun Tzu, Art of War

Chandogya Upanishad
Valmiki, Ramayana* Dhammapada Kalidasa, Shakuntala The Rig Veda
Mahatma Gandhi, Autobiography
Salman Rushdie, Midnight’s Children

Ghazzali, Al-Munqidh min al-Dalal: The Alchemy of Happiness
Nizami, The Story of Layla and Majnun
Omar Khayyam, The Rubaiyat The Qur’an (Koran)
Ibn Khaldun, The Muqaddimah
Naguib Mahfouz, Three Novels of Ancient Egypt
Rumi, Spiritual Couplets

Murasaki Shikibu, The Tale of Genji*
Donald L. Phillipi, Songs of God, Songs of Humans (Ainu epic)
Sei Shonagon, The Pillow Book
Yoshida Kenko, Essays in Idleness
Natsume Sôseki, The Three-Cornered World; Kokoro
Endo Shûsaku, Silence or Deep River
Ibuse Masuji, Black Rain Kawabata
Yasunari, Snow Country

Anthology of Korean Literature: From Early Times to the Nineteenth Century (Lee, ed.)
Richard Kim, Names
Kang Sok-Kyong, The Valley Nearby


lacy lee said...

I'm part inspired; part overwhelmed. But I'm in to join you on your quest. I think I can cross out like 5 of that's a start, right??...

Anonymous said...

I'll never forget reading "Vamimlila and Shangualua. Two really inspiring books from Burma. So, what does it mean if I haven't read any of these books, but seen all the movies of them. Also, how come none of these so-called classics are on the Oprah list.

cs said...

Anonymous, fess up. You are my brother Jeff. So what if you haven't read any of the books. Doesn't make you morally deficient. It's just a list for those who care. Not everyone does, I get that.
Also, I am sure when I post the film list you will rate much higher. :)