Author Topic: The GMG Pickwick Club  (Read 17341 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Online k a rl h e nn i ng

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 48088
  • Et quid amabo nisi quod ænigma est?
    • Henningmusick
  • Location: Boston, Mass.
  • Currently Listening to:
    Shostakovich, Frescobaldi, Stravinsky, JS Bach, Liszt, Chopin, Haydn, Henning
Re: The Pickwick Club
« Reply #40 on: July 21, 2015, 04:23:03 AM »
This thread is doing its job!  ;)  I am back in a Pickwick rhythm.
Karl Henning, Ph.D.
Composer & Clarinetist
Boston MA
http://www.karlhenning.com/
[Matisse] was interested neither in fending off opposition,
nor in competing for the favor of wayward friends.
His only competition was with himself. — Françoise Gilot

Offline Bogey

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 13489
  • Location: Colorado
Re: The Pickwick Club
« Reply #41 on: July 21, 2015, 07:31:06 AM »
Brief notes as I read Bleak House

The description of the weather and tying the fog back around into the court.

The overview of Mr. Tulkinghorn.

Both have justified a second read before I continue.
There will never be another era like the Golden Age of Hollywood.  We didn't know how to blow up buildings then so we had no choice but to tell great stories with great characters.-Ben Mankiewicz

Offline Bogey

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 13489
  • Location: Colorado
Re: The Pickwick Club
« Reply #42 on: July 21, 2015, 07:31:59 AM »
This thread is doing its job!  ;)  I am back in a Pickwick rhythm.

Pickwikian in its own right, Karl.
There will never be another era like the Golden Age of Hollywood.  We didn't know how to blow up buildings then so we had no choice but to tell great stories with great characters.-Ben Mankiewicz

Online k a rl h e nn i ng

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 48088
  • Et quid amabo nisi quod ænigma est?
    • Henningmusick
  • Location: Boston, Mass.
  • Currently Listening to:
    Shostakovich, Frescobaldi, Stravinsky, JS Bach, Liszt, Chopin, Haydn, Henning
Re: The Pickwick Club
« Reply #43 on: July 21, 2015, 07:32:41 AM »
As I reported to my brother earlier today, I'm in a Pickwick state of mind.
Karl Henning, Ph.D.
Composer & Clarinetist
Boston MA
http://www.karlhenning.com/
[Matisse] was interested neither in fending off opposition,
nor in competing for the favor of wayward friends.
His only competition was with himself. — Françoise Gilot

Offline aligreto

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 14054
  • Location: Ireland
Re: The Pickwick Club
« Reply #44 on: July 21, 2015, 12:04:34 PM »
As I reported to my brother earlier today, I'm in a Pickwick state of mind.

Serene bliss  8)
The ability to talk comes with knowledge. The ability to listen comes with wisdom.

Online k a rl h e nn i ng

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 48088
  • Et quid amabo nisi quod ænigma est?
    • Henningmusick
  • Location: Boston, Mass.
  • Currently Listening to:
    Shostakovich, Frescobaldi, Stravinsky, JS Bach, Liszt, Chopin, Haydn, Henning
Re: The Pickwick Club
« Reply #45 on: July 21, 2015, 12:29:22 PM »
Mr Pickwick could not resist so tempting an opportunity of studying human nature.
Karl Henning, Ph.D.
Composer & Clarinetist
Boston MA
http://www.karlhenning.com/
[Matisse] was interested neither in fending off opposition,
nor in competing for the favor of wayward friends.
His only competition was with himself. — Françoise Gilot

Online k a rl h e nn i ng

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 48088
  • Et quid amabo nisi quod ænigma est?
    • Henningmusick
  • Location: Boston, Mass.
  • Currently Listening to:
    Shostakovich, Frescobaldi, Stravinsky, JS Bach, Liszt, Chopin, Haydn, Henning
Re: The Pickwick Club
« Reply #46 on: July 23, 2015, 02:54:00 AM »
In a way that reminds me variously of Irving’s Tales of a Traveller and of The MS. Found at Saragossa, every now and again there is a curious, dramatic tale inset in the Papers.  The latest has to do with a chap languishing in debtor's prison, and I find myself torn between feeling that it is a bit melodramatic for my own sensibilities, and reflecting that there was a then-current social injustice which Dickens was commendably protesting.
Karl Henning, Ph.D.
Composer & Clarinetist
Boston MA
http://www.karlhenning.com/
[Matisse] was interested neither in fending off opposition,
nor in competing for the favor of wayward friends.
His only competition was with himself. — Françoise Gilot

Offline Alberich

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 1750
  • Huge fan of 19th and 20th century art.
  • Location: Finland
Re: The Pickwick Club
« Reply #47 on: July 23, 2015, 05:36:37 AM »
The latest has to do with a chap languishing in debtor's prison, and I find myself torn between feeling that it is a bit melodramatic for my own sensibilities, and reflecting that there was a then-current social injustice which Dickens was commendably protesting.

Oh, just you wait for Little Dorrit...  8)
« Last Edit: July 23, 2015, 05:41:41 AM by Alberich »
"Whatever causes night in our souls may leave stars."
 - Victor Hugo

Online k a rl h e nn i ng

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 48088
  • Et quid amabo nisi quod ænigma est?
    • Henningmusick
  • Location: Boston, Mass.
  • Currently Listening to:
    Shostakovich, Frescobaldi, Stravinsky, JS Bach, Liszt, Chopin, Haydn, Henning
Re: The Pickwick Club
« Reply #48 on: July 23, 2015, 05:57:15 AM »
Oh, just you wait for Little Dorrit...  8)

Oh, I'm sure!  And probably the first Dickens I read (other than the deservedly ubiquitous A Christmas Carol, of course) was probably Hard Times.
Karl Henning, Ph.D.
Composer & Clarinetist
Boston MA
http://www.karlhenning.com/
[Matisse] was interested neither in fending off opposition,
nor in competing for the favor of wayward friends.
His only competition was with himself. — Françoise Gilot

Offline aligreto

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 14054
  • Location: Ireland
Re: The Pickwick Club
« Reply #49 on: July 23, 2015, 10:35:00 AM »
In a way that reminds me variously of Irving’s Tales of a Traveller and of The MS. Found at Saragossa, every now and again there is a curious, dramatic tale inset in the Papers.  The latest has to do with a chap languishing in debtor's prison, and I find myself torn between feeling that it is a bit melodramatic for my own sensibilities, and reflecting that there was a then-current social injustice which Dickens was commendably protesting.

A strong recurring theme which permeates most/all (?) of his writing. I remember reading that character vividly.
The ability to talk comes with knowledge. The ability to listen comes with wisdom.

Offline Bogey

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 13489
  • Location: Colorado
Re: The Pickwick Club
« Reply #50 on: July 23, 2015, 10:36:24 AM »
Not to mention the five sisters of York in Nickleby.  Quite the bird walk, but nothing wrong with getting a little exercise.
There will never be another era like the Golden Age of Hollywood.  We didn't know how to blow up buildings then so we had no choice but to tell great stories with great characters.-Ben Mankiewicz

Offline aligreto

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 14054
  • Location: Ireland
Re: The Pickwick Club
« Reply #51 on: July 23, 2015, 10:44:30 AM »
Not to mention the five sisters of York in Nickleby.  Quite the bird walk, but nothing wrong with getting a little exercise.

I just read through that tale two days ago and that one was just a tad over-sentimental.
The ability to talk comes with knowledge. The ability to listen comes with wisdom.

Offline Bogey

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 13489
  • Location: Colorado
Re: The Pickwick Club
« Reply #52 on: July 23, 2015, 11:16:08 AM »
I just read through that tale two days ago and that one was just a tad over-sentimental.

Definitely a "insert short story here" moment.
There will never be another era like the Golden Age of Hollywood.  We didn't know how to blow up buildings then so we had no choice but to tell great stories with great characters.-Ben Mankiewicz

Offline Alberich

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 1750
  • Huge fan of 19th and 20th century art.
  • Location: Finland
Re: The Pickwick Club
« Reply #53 on: July 24, 2015, 03:50:01 AM »
I just read through that tale two days ago and that one was just a tad over-sentimental.

Understatement of the year. :P
"Whatever causes night in our souls may leave stars."
 - Victor Hugo

Offline Bogey

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 13489
  • Location: Colorado
Re: The Pickwick Club
« Reply #54 on: July 31, 2015, 06:11:12 AM »
In reference to Mr. Tulkinghorn's library:

The titles on the backs of his books have retired into the binding; everything that can have a lock has got one; no key is visible.

It is lines like these that make Dickens, well, Dickens for me. What a great description of a setting, but in one stroke of the pen, Mr. Tulkinghorn.
« Last Edit: July 31, 2015, 07:29:27 AM by Bogey »
There will never be another era like the Golden Age of Hollywood.  We didn't know how to blow up buildings then so we had no choice but to tell great stories with great characters.-Ben Mankiewicz

Offline Alberich

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 1750
  • Huge fan of 19th and 20th century art.
  • Location: Finland
Re: The Pickwick Club
« Reply #55 on: July 31, 2015, 07:30:50 AM »
There are so many great parts in Little Dorrit and Our Mutual Friend I could quote, but I'd hate to spoil Karl... In quote thread I have actually mentioned a few of those. His satire is at its most brilliant in Little Dorrit, even if at couple of times he hammers the point in our skulls a bit too much. Appropriately enough, Little Dorrit's original title was "Nobody's fault". Dickens was at the time very infuriated by what he saw as government trying to avoid responsibility of any kind. And his understanding of human psychology is shown quite effectively when describing certain Mr. Henry Gowan...
"Whatever causes night in our souls may leave stars."
 - Victor Hugo

Offline Alberich

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 1750
  • Huge fan of 19th and 20th century art.
  • Location: Finland
Re: The Pickwick Club
« Reply #56 on: July 31, 2015, 07:35:38 AM »
In reference to Mr. Tulkinghorn's library:

The titles on the backs of his books have retired into the binding; everything that can have a lock has got one; no key is visible.

It is lines like these that make Dickens, well, Dickens for me. What a great description of a setting, but in one stroke of the pen, Mr. Tulkinghorn.

Even though I haven't completely read Bleak house, what I do know about Tulkinghorn would probably make him my favorite character/s in the book. It's interesting how often his lawyer characters are described as immoral or at the very least, shady personalities. One of the exceptions is found in Our mutual friend.
"Whatever causes night in our souls may leave stars."
 - Victor Hugo

Offline Bogey

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 13489
  • Location: Colorado
Re: The Pickwick Club
« Reply #57 on: July 31, 2015, 07:42:26 AM »
Even though I haven't completely read Bleak house, what I do know about Tulkinghorn would probably make him my favorite character/s in the book. It's interesting how often his lawyer characters are described as immoral or at the very least, shady personalities. One of the exceptions is found in Our mutual friend.

It seems to be a long book.  I am reading from my Kindle as I vacation so do not have a paper copy in front of me.  Wonderful so far.
There will never be another era like the Golden Age of Hollywood.  We didn't know how to blow up buildings then so we had no choice but to tell great stories with great characters.-Ben Mankiewicz

Elgarian

  • Guest
Re: The Pickwick Club
« Reply #58 on: July 31, 2015, 09:28:28 AM »
One day when I was 14 years old, my English teacher (Mr Atherton by name, bless him) walked into the classroom and began to talk about the joys of secondhand bookshops. I'd never even (knowingly) seen a secondhand bookshop, let alone been in one, and I was intrigued. The reason he was talking about this was that just a few days earlier he'd found a nineteenth century copy of The Pickwick Papers, with all the original etched illustrations, and it had cost him next to nothing. Not surprisingly, he was thrilled, and wanted to share the fun of it.

Talk about influence! Something about this tale captured my imagination immediately, and I determined (a) to find a secondhand bookshop, and (b) to track down for myself an old copy of Pickwick with its original illustrations.  So began a lifetime infatuation with secondhand bookshops and old books. How much I owe that man. Rest in peace and gratitude, Mr Atherton.

Nice (but cheap) old copies of Pickwick are not that common, so although I found several old bookshops pretty quickly, I had to wait much longer for my C19th edition. I made do with a copy from the Library instead, and found it far more enjoyable than I expected, though I always felt it went off towards the end. What began as a delightfully comic tale became altogether too bleak, I thought; and I still would criticise the book for lacking coherence. Yes, I know, written in parts as it was, with its particular history, and its patchwork origin as a text to accompany a handful of etchings, coherence isn't exactly what one would expect from it; but still - he did spoil it, for me. I was still hung up on the theory of tittlebats and Dickens was asking me to confront the plight of Jingle in the Fleet.

Anyway, Pickwick would always find a place in any list of my top ten all-time favourite books, just because of my fondness for how it all began, though I wonder how many more re-readings lie ahead of me. Not so many, I think. The competition is a lot fiercer now than when I was 14.


Online k a rl h e nn i ng

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 48088
  • Et quid amabo nisi quod ænigma est?
    • Henningmusick
  • Location: Boston, Mass.
  • Currently Listening to:
    Shostakovich, Frescobaldi, Stravinsky, JS Bach, Liszt, Chopin, Haydn, Henning
Re: The Pickwick Club
« Reply #59 on: July 31, 2015, 09:43:08 AM »
Alan, how grand to see you again! And you remind me that I must get back to Pickwick's breach of promise suit . . . .
Karl Henning, Ph.D.
Composer & Clarinetist
Boston MA
http://www.karlhenning.com/
[Matisse] was interested neither in fending off opposition,
nor in competing for the favor of wayward friends.
His only competition was with himself. — Françoise Gilot