The Great American Read discussion

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The list, other books, movies > Which of the books on the list are international (not U.S)?

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message 1: by NancyJ, Moderator (last edited Jun 30, 2018 12:13PM) (new)

NancyJ (nancyjjj) | 1835 comments Mod
Which of the books on the list would be you consider to be International (Not from the U.S.)? List the books and their countries.

I know that's not always a simple question (e.. Americanah), but please share your perceptions.

Some of the factors to consider:
First publication - what country, what language
Author - native land, location when writing the book
Book - setting, nationality of the protagonists , or the majority of the characters.

If a book features a character who moved to another country, a common catch-all phrase for that is "Immigrant experience."

On the Summer Challenge, I excluded English language countries (UK and Australia) to make it more challenging.

If you're looking for a "foreign" book (or film), what matters to you? The setting and characters? The author's origin? The language? Where it was published?


message 2: by Ella (new)

Ella (ellamc) | 300 comments I recently recommitted to a life-long challenge: read a book by an author from every country in the world that must be SET in that country (ie, can't read Rushdie's Golden House for "India" or "USA" because it must be both.) I'm doing that because I want an authentic voice on the country, and it seems silly to read a book by a Iraqi author set in NYC when I'm trying to travel the world via books (b/c that's the only way I'll ever get to do so.) But there are many ways to do this, so really it's up to everyone to figure out on her own, I guess.


message 3: by Joy, Your Obedient Servant (last edited Jun 30, 2018 08:23PM) (new)

Joy (jammons42) | 510 comments Mod
NancyJ wrote: "Which of the books on the list would be you consider to be International (Not from the U.S.)? List the books and their countries.

I know that's not always a simple question (e.. Americanah), but p..."


Usually my criteria is where the work was produced and in what language is the original. I do not generally consider anything pre-1900 UK as foreign. And I do not count Canadian works as foreign either.

The Alchemist- Brazil?
Count of Monte Cristo- France
Crime and Punishment- Russia
Don Quixote- Spain
Dona Barbara- South America
The Little Prince- French
One hundred years of solitude- South America?
Siddhartha- German/India
Things fall Apart- Nigeria
War and Peace- Russia


message 4: by Linda (new)

Linda  | 915 comments J. wrote: "NancyJ wrote: "Which of the books on the list would be you consider to be International (Not from the U.S.)? List the books and their countries.

I know that's not always a simple question (e.. Ame..."


Yes, The Alchemist is Brazilian.
Doña Bárbara is from Venezuela ( country, not continent--it matters to them! :))
One Hundred Years of Solitude is Colombian


message 5: by Linda (last edited Jun 30, 2018 09:29PM) (new)

Linda  | 915 comments Technically, because they were English, Canadian, Irish..........(and one Pole for bonus):

1984
The Picture of Dorian Gray
Pride and Prejudice
Wuthering Heights
Anne of Green Gables (Canadian)
Chronicles of Narnia
Game of Thrones
Gulliver's Travels
Great Expectations
Handmaid's Tale (Canadian)
Heart of Darkness (I don't know if people realize Conrad was Polish and English was his second language. Though I wasn't a fan of what I read of his, I have a newfound appreciation for that, and want to read more of his stuff)
Jane Eyre
Lord of the Rings
Pilgrim's Progress
Pride and Prejudice
The PIllars of the Earth
White Teeth

So, yes, a lot of the books on the list were not written by American authors. I noticed it right away, and then realized that "American Read" refers to getting us to read (the action), and not the author's nationality.


message 6: by Joy, Your Obedient Servant (new)

Joy (jammons42) | 510 comments Mod
Linda Abhors the New GR Design wrote: "J. wrote: "NancyJ wrote: "Which of the books on the list would be you consider to be International (Not from the U.S.)? List the books and their countries.

I know that's not always a simple questi..."


Yes! I know it matters. I wasn't sure and didn't want to misidentify country of origin so I opted for region!


message 7: by Linda (new)

Linda  | 915 comments J. wrote: "Linda Abhors the New GR Design wrote: "J. wrote: "NancyJ wrote: "Which of the books on the list would be you consider to be International (Not from the U.S.)? List the books and their countries.

I..."


That's second best! :D


message 8: by NancyJ, Moderator (new)

NancyJ (nancyjjj) | 1835 comments Mod
Linda Abhors the New GR Design wrote: "Technically, because they were English, Canadian, Irish..........(and one Pole for bonus):

.."


Which ones were Irish and Canadian?


message 9: by Linda (last edited Jul 06, 2018 05:35PM) (new)

Linda  | 915 comments I marked the Canadian.
Oscar Wilde was Irish
Jonathan Swift is listed as "Anglo-Irish", later held an important position in the Church in Dublin.


message 10: by NancyJ, Moderator (new)

NancyJ (nancyjjj) | 1835 comments Mod
Thanks, BTW, there is a sign in my library telling us that Canada is included in the Great American Read, and that Canadians can vote. I live near the Canadian border and I know Canadians watch our PBS station (and donate money to it).


message 11: by Linda (new)

Linda  | 915 comments NancyJ wrote: "Thanks, BTW, there is a sign in my library telling us that Canada is included in the Great American Read, and that Canadians can vote. I live near the Canadian border and I know Canadians watch our..."

Interesting.........wonder if they're going to include Mexico, too, then. Ha!


message 12: by Kirsten (new)

Kirsten  (kmcripn) NancyJ wrote: "Thanks, BTW, there is a sign in my library telling us that Canada is included in the Great American Read, and that Canadians can vote. I live near the Canadian border and I know Canadians watch our..."

Ours too.


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