I think that most book readers, and definitely book bloggers, have strong opinions about writing in the margins of books. It's been my experience that the general consensus for writing in books is a big no-no. I have to say, I am a cheerleader for Team Marginalia, especially with difficult texts, emotionally striking reads, or classics. Writing on the sidelines makes more a meaningful experience.
And evidently there's been a lot of Greats who felt writing did make meaning: Mark Twain, William Blake, Samuel Coleridge, just to name a few.
But then, a time came when writing in the margins was *gasp* a horrible thing to do. Sacrilegious even!
"In the 20th century it mostly came to be regarded like graffiti: something polite and respectful people did not do." (btw, go read the article LIKE NOW)
So, there's going to be this symposium about writing in the margins, the importance, the merit, the JOY. And there's going to be this book that shares all of the above as well.
The basis of the article is "Hey, reading ISN'T passive." Push yourself outside of the pages but perhaps writing in them?
I also dig how they refer to marginalia as literary archeology.* Comments that we write in the margins are like time capsules. I know that I get a kick out of looking at my twenty-year old self in the words that I scribbled through out my Norton anthologies. Or those "aha" exclamatory comments that I jotted in my psych texts. Introspective questions that I may or may not have answered.
I've lost most of my marginalia skillz. They're not what they used to be. Similar to the article, I've allowed my consciousness to consider it is book graffiti. Deep down I know that it isn't, but there's been a certain amount of guilt associated with the writing now. Maybe it's because I felt like the writing could be rash and speculative when I was twentyish. As a thirty year (and few) adult, my notes strike a certain amount of permanence and yes, there's even an amount of insecurity that I might be WRONG and SILLY. And I can't be WRONG and SILLY at 33. (I am 33, yes?)
Oh Lord, am I having a midlife book crisis?
*Did you see what I did there?! Pun Fun!
This has been a fairly relaxed week compared to last one. (Although there was a mid-week-birthday-celebration-turned-"let's-go-downotown" soiree that left me tired and a wee bit hungover for a work day.) Saturday I spent it downtown again, but without the alcohol. Our girls had a step competition and they were AWESOME. They'll be competing at the State Fair next weekend too.
- I started this week sharing my FAIL with the Outta Rut Rat
- A review?! What?! My thoughts on The Color Purple
- Friday Five...Welcome to my Classroom
This week, I read
- The Ghost Orchid by Carol Goodman
- I, Q by Roland Smith
I abandoned set aside
- Oliver Twist by Charles Dickens
- Subjection of Women by John Stuart Mill
And I will continue reading
- Ceremony by Leslie Marmon Silko
- The Well Educated Mind by Susan Wise Bauer