Steinbeck and Arthur Miller dropped from GCSE English Literature book list!

Von Ranke

Ad Honorem
Nov 2011
6,377
Thistleland
In light of the plethora of threads we have had on anti-Americanism of late to cap it all Education Secretary Michael Gove, in his wisdom, has decided to drop all American novels and plays from the school curriculum. The study of traditional British literature is to be the order of the day and our youngsters will no longer be schooled in classics such as The Crucible, Death of a Salesman, The Grapes of Wrath and Of Mice and Men. Imagine that, no more Willie Loman and Tom Joad, sacrilege! Any Thoughts?
 

Von Ranke

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Nov 2011
6,377
Thistleland
BBC article on the kerfuffle:

BBC News - Syal but no Steinbeck in English GCSE

I think I'm all for it. If this works, there might be some chance to extricate Arthur Miller from American classrooms.
Thanks for the link. Well clearly you are no fan of Arthur Miller which is fair comment as that is a matter of personal taste but for me Death of a Salesman defines the American Dream and the personal price paid in pursuit of its attainment. I just feel that the move is on the parochial side and smacks of Little England sentiment.
 
Sep 2013
1,384
Scotland
"Little England" exactly Von, meanwhile on the box we are force-fed tripe like Blandings & Mr D'Arcy sirrah!

Gushel.
 

RoryOMore

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Mar 2012
3,398
USA
Do they teach humor in UK classes - not dark humor or comedy/drama, but just plain silly humor? I don't see Wodehouse on that list. I never saw a page of James Thurber in school, and it would have been a breath of fresh air amongst all the solemn crap that I've forgotten.
 

Linschoten

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Aug 2010
16,214
Welsh Marches
Don't believe everything you find in the media, and especially when it comes to Mr Gove (who has been subjected to a long-running smear campaign).

"Newspapers breathlessly reported the “fact” that I have banned Arthur Miller, John Steinbeck’s Of Mice And Men and Harper Lee’s To Kill A Mockingbird from the nation’s classrooms. I have apparently decreed that only literature written by true-born Englishmen (copyright Daniel Defoe) can be read by our children. And without waiting to do anything as mundane as checking the facts, a host of culture warriors have taken to Twitter to denounce this literary isolationism."

From here:

Michael Gove: Kill a Mockingbird? I?d never dream of it - Telegraph
 
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rvsakhadeo

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Sep 2012
9,224
India
Actually I was thinking of starting a thread on the current reading preferences in the UK / USA of the great authors on both sides of the Atlantic. I was going to give a list of authors , may be not in much fashion today but who are , in my opinion really first class and I was going to ask whether they are still read.
My examples ( only some of them ) were : Sir Walter Scott, Thomas Carlyle, Marie Corelli, A.G.Gardiner or Alpha of the Plough, G.K.Chesterton, even H.G.Wells, Joseph Conrad, Somerset Maugham, Peter Scott, T.E.Lawrence, Liddell Hart, Gavin Maxwell and on the USA side, Washington Irving, Benjamin Franklin, Hemingway,Scott FitzGerald, Mark Twain, Allen Drury etc. You get the picture.
Are these worthies still being read ?
 

Linschoten

Ad Honoris
Aug 2010
16,214
Welsh Marches
I would say that Walter Scott, Carlyle and Marie Corelli are hardly read at all in the UK these days. Wells, yes, and Joseph Conrad, very much so (a great novelist in my view). Maugham less than he used to be, he deserves to be read more, especially his short stories. Hemingway, Fitzgerald and Twain are widely read. With regard to Fitzgerald, I love 'the Great Gatsby', but find his other works hard going!
 

RoryOMore

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Mar 2012
3,398
USA
Don't believe everything you find in the media, and especially when it comes to Mr Gove (who has been subjected to a long-running smear campaign).
I've never heard of this controversy till VanR posted it, but from the little I read it seemed like the claim was that once the curriculum was taught there wouldn't be time to add optional writers.
 
Sep 2013
1,384
Scotland
Actually I was thinking of starting a thread on the current reading preferences in the UK / USA of the great authors on both sides of the Atlantic. I was going to give a list of authors , may be not in much fashion today but who are , in my opinion really first class and I was going to ask whether they are still read.
My examples ( only some of them ) were : Sir Walter Scott, Thomas Carlyle, Marie Corelli, A.G.Gardiner or Alpha of the Plough, G.K.Chesterton, even H.G.Wells, Joseph Conrad, Somerset Maugham, Peter Scott, T.E.Lawrence, Liddell Hart, Gavin Maxwell and on the USA side, Washington Irving, Benjamin Franklin, Hemingway,Scott FitzGerald, Mark Twain, Allen Drury etc. You get the picture.
Are these worthies still being read ?
You're well read RV, I've set of Scott but ashamed to say it's never been opened, maybe next Winter?
How about Stevenson, Cobbett & Cunninghame Graham?

Gushel.
 
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