How I Choose What To Read

In case you haven’t read my About page, I will be starting my English Literature degree at Oxford University in October 2016, and I thought it would be a good idea to expand a little more on how much that affects this blog in terms of my reading choices. (Also I kind of wanted to brag about how beautiful my college for the next three years is, hence all the pictures!)

The (most gorgeous) college library (in the world)

The course is structured chronologically, the idea being that over the three years of my degree I’ll be able to ground myself in English Literature from its foundations in medieval times right up to the present day. In first year, the three main periods of literature I’ll be studying are:

  • Early Medieval Literature, c. 650 – 1350
  • Literature in English 1830 – 1910 (‘Victorian’)
  • Literature in English 1910 – present day (‘Modern’)

As you’ll have noticed, most of the books I’m reading fit into the latter category – though I seem to be spending most of my time these days reading Victorian fiction, as they simply take me longer to read than more modern books. It is also these categories that have inspired how I’ve organised the content on this blog.

So much loveliness!

I’m not attempting to read ahead and tackle any texts for years 2 or 3, partly because I haven’t read nearly enough for first year yet but mostly because the course splits into two distinct halves upon commencement of second year (more information about that can be found here), and though I know which half I’d like to do, it’s not set in stone by any means at this stage.

So now you know what my aims are, feel free to recommend me any classics or noteworthy novels to read over the next few months. I currently don’t have an official reading list, so any advice would be welcomed. Over to you, internet!




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