Arthur C Clake as well There s a lot in here and while some of it is academic dissertation gone wild there is plenty of value as well I thought this would be mildly interesting to hear about fantasy in novels history and how it relates to our society present and past But as soon as I started reading wow Fascinating I ve read a lot of the novels talked about in part 1 of 2 so I m not sure if that makes a big difference I suspect it does but still Really interesting once I got into the first lecture ie kept distractions at bay I zipped through the first part like there was no tomorrow It starts with Grimms Fairy tales and heads past the Tolkein by the first part so I m wondering what part 2 will hold Can t wait for it to arrive in my library hold list sigh it always takes forever If it s as good as the first lecture I will consider shelling out the considerable sum of money if I recall most lecture parts so there are two of these are a hundred or so So yeah I like it specially as I have no room whatsoever but it s just so good I would recommend to anyone interested in fantasy at allI will admit there were a few times my Travis eyes glazed over and in the beginning of the lecture I feared Proff Rabkin would be a rather circuitous lecturer he took awhile to wind his way to a topic but once things got going talk about interesting There are a few moments that really it s dry there s noscaping that but I d say 07% of it is just riveting well it was to me I loved the lecture on Metamorphoses and Kafka in general Poe Woolf all really interesting It made me want to read Orlando which I never got around to reading and reread the Metamorphoses as it s been gulp over 15 years since I last read itGreat listen I liked his lecture style and I loved the topic ager for part 2 Terrific series that will help you to better appreciate the fantastic in literature g fables children s literature Tolkien sci fi Alice in Wonderland Virginia Woolf magical realism and much Most listeners will have read many of the books that Dr Rabkin talks about but he brings out in a believable way some of the deeper layers of meaning that I never saw in my surface readings A few notes from the lecture on children s lit1 Characters typically the hero is a child or animal Relationships are between children animals and a parent figure Children have full autonomy2 Plot often simple AI Weiwei: Beijing Photographs, 1993-2003 episodic clearly goal directed may be motivated by a singlemotion and typically with a happy The Bubble Economy: Is Sustainable Growth Possible? ending3 Theme simple and typically with a single problem with a clear solution4 Style restricted vocab but they often use cute or periphrastic language Often theymploy verse and nonsense5 Format Format matters illustrations size dition color font styleWhy do adult like children s lit1 They njoy it on its own terms or for nostalgia2 Some children s books are also adult books3 Can be used to comment on children4 Use of the form by adults to deal simplistically with a complex adult problem The Social Machine: Designs for Living Online eg Orwell s Animal FarmThe second half of the course moves into anxploration and discussion of science fiction which Dr Rabkin defines in my recollection as. Audience; 6 HG Wells We Are All Talking Animals; 7 Franz Kafka Dashed Fantasies; 8 Woolf Fantastic Feminism Periods of Art; 9 Robbe Grillet Experimental Fiction Myth; 10 Tolkien Mass Production of the Fantastic; 11 Children's Literature and the Fantastic; 12 Postmodernism and the Fantastic; 13 Defining Science Fiction; 14 Mary Shelley Grandmother of Science Fiction; 15 Hawtho.
A decent Collision Course: Endless Growth on a Finite Planet enough lecture series and uite comprehensive Rabkin covers the significant contributions to science fiction and fantasy including fairy tales and the like from the Grimm brothers andarlier to modern day including recurring themes and stories Which is why this series is 24 lectures long instead of the usual 12 I didn t necessarily buy all of his symbolism and interpretations I realize sex is a dominant theme in literature but I don t know that literature is about sex uite as often as Rabkin thinks it is Then too he sees allusions that I m not 10 PRINT CHR$(205.5+RND(1)); : GOTO 10 (Software Studies) entirely sure the authors intended Of course there are themes and ideas in the cultural memory and I have no trouble believing that authors can unintentionally reflect or al This is as positive a point of view on Fantastic literature as I ve found from any academic aside from Tom Shippey I liked Shippey s course on Heroes but Rabkin is worth listening to if you re interested in an academic take on the fantastic in literature In thend my primary beef is that the academy attempts to define the fantastic in a way that feels stretched to me and that feels like it s designed to pull away from fantasy While Rabkin mbraces science fiction as a key contemporary genre perhaps ven the most important contemporary genre he dismisses modern fantasy with a lecture on Tolkien and the mass production of the fantastic While Rabkin was on the whole positive in his treatment of Tolkien I feel like he missed a lot there and missed Your Everyday Art World even in looking at the side worksspecially shortchanging On Fairystories which offers an ually academic but very very different theory of the fantastic that I find valid and ignoring The Monsters and the Critics which while focused on Beowulf has tremendous implications for critical treatment of the fantastic as a whole completely And then he ignores anyone post Tolkien in modern fantasy which honestly in a course on Literature s Most Fantastic Works feels indefensible to me Beef aside this course was worth it for Rabkin s insightful treatment of science fiction particularly Bradbury Heinlein Assimov and Clarke Be warned here you will find statements such as thisIn fact the union of these pieces in the tripartide manner or uadripartide manner of Freud or Jung is what gives psychological strengthI ll fully admit that I am being incredibly unfair in taking the above uote out of context but I wanted to illustrate what I mean when I say that there is to Rabkin s lectures than many readers starting with myself are looking forConsider this an advanced analysis of FantasyScience Fiction from the point of view of a professor with theories to advance on the subjects I might suggest Micheal Drout s From Here To Infinity An Exploration of Science Fiction Literatureand Rings Swords and Monsters Exploring Fantasy Literature for of an overview of the mediums as well as a bit of an accessible start Though Drout s stance that all Fantasy after Tolkein is a reaction to Tolkein is short sightedI will say this though Rabkin had taught me something about HG Wells and specifically about War of the Worlds that I wasn t aware of. Professor Eric Rabkin from the University of Michigan speaking about the world's greatest literary works This two box set of 24 lectures on 12 cassette tapes covers the following 1 Brothers Grimm Fairy Tale Psychology; 2 Propp Structure and Cultural Identity; 3 Hoffmann and the Theory of the Fantastic; 4 Poe Genres and Degrees of the Fantastic; 5 Lewis Carroll Puzzles Language.
Fiction that s made plausible against a background of science and technology It s a wonderful introduction to some of the masters of sci fi Asimov Clarke Heinlein Le Guin and their predecessors Mary Shelley Hawthorne s short stories Poe HG Wells I look forward to tasting and savoring many of the books he discussed in the course The lecture on science fiction and religion was particularly interesting Good courseSmall room for improvement At times he mentioned different works in passing and only once Sitting in a car that made his lectures not always not always comprehensible Also it would have helped if he named the title of the book he was discussing often As sometimes his lecture is interrupted by me arriving or having a traffic situation at that one moment he mentions the title NOTE I m stingy with stars For me 2 stars means a good book or a B 3 stars means a very good book or a B 4 stars means an outstanding book or an A only about 5% of the books I read merit 4 stars 5 stars means an all time favorite or an A Only one of 400 or 500 books rates thisThe great news is that I can listen to a book a day at work The bad news is that I can t k This is xcellent the professor is great and his material is top rate I only have two minor complaints there is not Doreen Valiente Witch enough fantasy covered compared to SF and the last few lectures are very spoiler y Audio downloadduring a really good saleI usually spend a great deal of time reading the reviews of lectures series before committing both the cash and the time to them It took me a long while and a very good sale coupon to get around to this onemainly because the reviews are so negative Many of those negative reviews on The Great Courses site focus on Dr Rabkin s interpretations of some of the literary works bookssome of them may be validsome may be pure speculation After listening to these lectures I ve come to the conclusion that those criticisms are a bit too harsh and really don t reflect what a solid well presented course this really is I ve taken several upper level lectures in undergrad and grad school in which the prof waxes philosophical and offers opinions about whatever subject on which he s lecturing I m sitting there listening andither thinking hmmmmgood point I never considered that point of view Or I m thinking what the heck is that moron talking about But most importantly I m thinkingThat s where I found myself in these lectures I have read some certainly not all of these bookscurrently being reintroduced to the fairy tale classics by my grandchildren they don t give a hoot about Freudand have Duty Free Murder enjoyed them without much deep meaning thoughts Dr Rabkin give me another point of view to think about and perhaps motivate me to reread some of them A Canticle for Leibowitz comes to mindThis course will push me to investigatenlarging my reading list to include Hugo Award winnersbut I probably won t spend too much time worrying about why Little Red Riding Hood s cloak is redRecommended for the patient reader Parts of this are uite intersting yet it is also somewhat limited Pratchett and Urban aren t really covered for instanc. Rne Poe and the Eden Complex; 16 Jules Verne and the Robinsonade; 17 Wells Industrialization of the Fantastic; 18 The History of Utopia; 19 Science Fiction and Religion; 20 Pulp Fiction Bradbury the American Myth; 21 Robert A Heinlein He Mapped the Future; 22 Asimov and Clarke Cousins in Utopia; 23 Ursula K LeGuin Transhuman Anthropologist; 24 Cyberpunk Postmodernism and Beyon.