What does it mean when a fictional hero takes a journey? Shares a meal? Gets drenched in a sudden rain shower? Often, there is much more going on in a novel or poem than is readily visible on the surface — a symbol, maybe, that remains elusive, or an unexpected twist on a character — and there’s that sneaking suspicion that the deeper meaning of a literary text keeps escaping you.
In this practical and amusing guide to literature, Thomas C. Foster shows how easy and gratifying it is to unlock those hidden truths, and to discover a world where a road leads to a quest; a shared meal may signify a communion; and rain, whether cleansing or destructive, is never just rain. Ranging from major themes to literary models, narrative devices, and form, How to Read Literature Like a Professor is the perfect companion for making your reading experience more enriching, satisfying, and fun.
Author: Thomas C. Foster
I didn’t study English or literature in college, but I wish I had taken at least one or two classes. I love to read, and I’m sure there are deeper meanings I’m missing. I did some poking around online to figure out the best way to get started, and I found my way to this book. If you find yourself in a similar situation, I recommend that you do too.
How to Read Literature Like a Professor does not read like a textbook. It’s a fun read that definitely taught me something (or multiple somethings!). It also inspired me to read more of the classics, as Foster references many works again and again throughout the book. When I finished, I purchased an anthology of American short stories to start practicing on!