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bdNM
Posts: 470
Registered: ‎11-22-2006
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Book I, Chapter 1 -- Our introduction to Don Quixote...

In this opening chapter, we get an introduction to Don Quixote, or Alonzo Quixano, a gentleman living in La Mancha in southern Spain.  A couple of things to consider as we read -- what are we to make of Don Quixote's malady, the madness brought on by books?  Is Cervantes suggesting that reading a lot is dangerous (there but for the grace of God go we)?  Is his determination to enact the life of a knight errant relatively harmless?  Or is it harmful, to himself and others?  Is it something we need (as the Don engages in his travels and adventures, do we get a needed vicarious thrill?)?  In what ways does a book like Twain's A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court recall this work, with its combination of wonder and skepticism?

Good reading, and sharing...

Dignity, always dignity.
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Choisya
Posts: 10,782
Registered: ‎10-26-2006
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Re: Book I, Chapter 1 -- Our introduction to Don Quixote...

 

I think perhaps reading one type of book could bring on a sort of 'madness' or imbalance.  Mary Wollstonecraft (and Flaubert) certainly thought that the diet of romances, which women of her day (like Madame Bovary) indulged in, led to their being unbalanced about the realities of life, especially married life.  Similarly, there is debate nowadays about whether a diet of violence in books or film/DVD can predispose peope towards violence. I think the jury is still out although there is no doubt that books can have a great influence on our lives.     

bdNM wrote:

In this opening chapter, we get an introduction to Don Quixote, or Alonzo Quixano, a gentleman living in La Mancha in southern Spain.  A couple of things to consider as we read -- what are we to make of Don Quixote's malady, the madness brought on by books?  Is Cervantes suggesting that reading a lot is dangerous (there but for the grace of God go we)?  Is his determination to enact the life of a knight errant relatively harmless?  Or is it harmful, to himself and others?  Is it something we need (as the Don engages in his travels and adventures, do we get a needed vicarious thrill?)?  In what ways does a book like Twain's A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court recall this work, with its combination of wonder and skepticism?

Good reading, and sharing...


 

 

Inspired Contributor
Choisya
Posts: 10,782
Registered: ‎10-26-2006
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Re: Book I : Illustrations for Don Quixote

[ Edited ]

Here are a collection of illustrations for Don Quixote for folks to mull over:-

 

 

Perhaps the most famous illustrations are by Gustave Dore which capture the fantastic nature of Quixote and his adventures:
 
 
I rather like this Breughel like one by an American artist:

 
Here is a surreal one of DQ from Russia:
 
 
These German illustrations have a fairytale quality which remind me of Grimms Fairy Tales:
 
 
This one by Picasso seems to capture The Knight of the Sad Countenance
 
 
William Hogarth's illustrations are perhaps the most 'realistic'
 

 

Distinguished Bibliophile
Peppermill
Posts: 6,768
Registered: ‎04-04-2007
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Re: Book I : Illustrations for Don Quixote

[ Edited ]

 


Choisya wrote:

Here are a collection of illustrations for Don Quixote for folks to mull over:-

 

 

Perhaps the most famous illustrations are by Gustave Dore which capture the fantastic nature of Quixote and his adventures:
 
I rather like this Breughel like one by an American artist:
 
 
These German illustrations have a fairytale quality which remind me of Grimms Fairy Tales:
 
This one by Picasso seems to capture The Knight of the Sad Countenance
 
William Hogarth's illustrations are perhaps the most 'realistic'
 

 


Choisya -- you asked me what I meant about having to designate now for a link to open in a new window.  In an attempt to explain, I have taken the wonderful set you gave us and re-programmed them above.  I entered the link like we always have, but then, on the line below, I chose the second option, to open in a new window. 

 

It really frosts me to have to do that, because it used to be so easy.  Also, when one does that, it is no longer possible to check links from the Preview -- don't ask me why.  But, if a link opens in the same window as our discussion and one does any exploring from the link, it can be hard to get back to B&N.   Also, in a message like the one you just gave us, it is fun to open the pictures in adjacent tabs and move back and forth between them. 

 

I am going to post a PM to Jon and ask him to look at these examples.  Maybe I can finally get understood on this topic and that it does matter -- the more I realize all the ramifications, the more upset I get about the change.  At first, I just knew that I didn't like it!

 

Pepper

 

"Seize the moments of happiness, love and be loved! That is the only reality in the world, all else is folly. It is the one thing we are interested in here." -- Leo Tolstoy
Inspired Contributor
Choisya
Posts: 10,782
Registered: ‎10-26-2006
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Re: Book I : Illustrations for Don Quixote

[ Edited ]

Oh Pepper!!  I had not realised that pasting the full URL instead of using the 'Insert a link' would cause such difficulties and then when I clicked on your second link I was signed out - after having spent several minutes trying to Sign in!!!  I do not think there is a cat in hell's chance of getting anyone to listen to us, I think they are just ploughing on believing that they are somehow making the website 'better' for us, whereas each further day which presents difficulties makes our online lives here even more of a misery!:smileysad:  Were it not for the fact that I have purchased 4 books so as to participate in 4 discussions with good friends like you, I wouldn't touch this website with a bargepole until it is all sorted - if it ever will be!

 

.

 


Peppermill wrote:

 


Choisya wrote:

Here are a collection of illustrations for Don Quixote for folks to mull over:-

 

 

Perhaps the most famous illustrations are by Gustave Dore which capture the fantastic nature of Quixote and his adventures:
 
I rather like this Breughel like one by an American artist:
 
 
These German illustrations have a fairytale quality which remind me of Grimms Fairy Tales:
 
This one by Picasso seems to capture The Knight of the Sad Countenance
 
William Hogarth's illustrations are perhaps the most 'realistic'
 

 


Choisya -- you asked me what I meant about having to designate now for a link to open in a new window.  In an attempt to explain, I have taken the wonderful set you gave us and re-programmed them above.  I entered the link like we always have, but then, on the line below, I chose the second option, to open in a new window. 

 

It really frosts me to have to do that, because it used to be so easy.  Also, when one does that, it is no longer possible to check links from the Preview -- don't ask me why.  But, if a link opens in the same window as our discussion and one does any exploring from the link, it can be hard to get back to B&N.   Also, in a message like the one you just gave us, it is fun to open the pictures in adjacent tabs and move back and forth between them. 

 

I am going to post a PM to Jon and ask him to look at these examples.  Maybe I can finally get understood on this topic and that it does matter -- the more I realize all the ramifications, the more upset I get about the change.  At first, I just knew that I didn't like it!

 

Pepper

 


 

 

Reader-Moderator
bdNM
Posts: 470
Registered: ‎11-22-2006
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Re: Book I, Chapter 1 -- Our introduction to Don Quixote...

 


Choisya wrote:

 

I think perhaps reading one type of book could bring on a sort of 'madness' or imbalance.  Mary Wollstonecraft (and Flaubert) certainly thought that the diet of romances, which women of her day (like Madame Bovary) indulged in, led to their being unbalanced about the realities of life, especially married life.  Similarly, there is debate nowadays about whether a diet of violence in books or film/DVD can predispose peope towards violence. I think the jury is still out although there is no doubt that books can have a great influence on our lives.     

bdNM wrote:

In this opening chapter, we get an introduction to Don Quixote, or Alonzo Quixano, a gentleman living in La Mancha in southern Spain.  A couple of things to consider as we read -- what are we to make of Don Quixote's malady, the madness brought on by books?  Is Cervantes suggesting that reading a lot is dangerous (there but for the grace of God go we)?  Is his determination to enact the life of a knight errant relatively harmless?  Or is it harmful, to himself and others?  Is it something we need (as the Don engages in his travels and adventures, do we get a needed vicarious thrill?)?  In what ways does a book like Twain's A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court recall this work, with its combination of wonder and skepticism?

Good reading, and sharing...


 

 


 

I wonder if reading (or watching) has that effect, or, in the case of violent or other images, acts as some sort of safety valve. I get a sense, here in the US, that certain themes have taken hold and that getting past those themes is very difficult.  The "rugged individualist" theme seems to resonate quite strongly here, and it seems that it makes arguments for community action more difficult. In that sense, Western movies and novels contribute to promulgating and reinforcing the "man alone" image, which, in its extreme case leads to the sort of harsh and violent rhetoric we've seen recently in the health care discussion.  

 

Dignity, always dignity.
Distinguished Bibliophile
Peppermill
Posts: 6,768
Registered: ‎04-04-2007
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Re: Book I : Illustrations for Don Quixote

Oh Pepper!!  I had not realised that pasting the full URL instead of using the 'Insert a link' would cause such difficulties and then when I clicked on your second link I was signed out - after having spent several minutes trying to Sign in!!!

 

Oh, Choisya, I'm so sorry you got signed out!

 

What a pain this all is!

 

Like you, I am hanging in for the days when things get better again because of the wonderful discussions we do have.

 

Pepper

"Seize the moments of happiness, love and be loved! That is the only reality in the world, all else is folly. It is the one thing we are interested in here." -- Leo Tolstoy
Inspired Contributor
Choisya
Posts: 10,782
Registered: ‎10-26-2006
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Re: Book I, Chapter 1 -- Our introduction to Don Quixote...

I have been thinking further about the corrupting effect of literature and I think the difference may be that we have many more sources  to tap into whereas in Mary Wollstonecraft's and DQ's time, there were very few books around, no film, no radio and no TV.  A few people read the Bible but most heard sermons at church. The church also provided what graphic images there were by way of statues and stained glass etc.  Perhaps if your mind was (is?) unaccustomed to a broad range of reading matter and imagery, you were more susceptible to what stories and illustrations you came across and and were more likely to 'take them as gospel'?

 

 


bdNM wrote:

 


Choisya wrote:

 

I think perhaps reading one type of book could bring on a sort of 'madness' or imbalance.  Mary Wollstonecraft (and Flaubert) certainly thought that the diet of romances, which women of her day (like Madame Bovary) indulged in, led to their being unbalanced about the realities of life, especially married life.  Similarly, there is debate nowadays about whether a diet of violence in books or film/DVD can predispose peope towards violence. I think the jury is still out although there is no doubt that books can have a great influence on our lives.     

bdNM wrote:

In this opening chapter, we get an introduction to Don Quixote, or Alonzo Quixano, a gentleman living in La Mancha in southern Spain.  A couple of things to consider as we read -- what are we to make of Don Quixote's malady, the madness brought on by books?  Is Cervantes suggesting that reading a lot is dangerous (there but for the grace of God go we)?  Is his determination to enact the life of a knight errant relatively harmless?  Or is it harmful, to himself and others?  Is it something we need (as the Don engages in his travels and adventures, do we get a needed vicarious thrill?)?  In what ways does a book like Twain's A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court recall this work, with its combination of wonder and skepticism?

Good reading, and sharing...


 

 


 

I wonder if reading (or watching) has that effect, or, in the case of violent or other images, acts as some sort of safety valve. I get a sense, here in the US, that certain themes have taken hold and that getting past those themes is very difficult.  The "rugged individualist" theme seems to resonate quite strongly here, and it seems that it makes arguments for community action more difficult. In that sense, Western movies and novels contribute to promulgating and reinforcing the "man alone" image, which, in its extreme case leads to the sort of harsh and violent rhetoric we've seen recently in the health care discussion.  

 


 

 

Correspondent
rbehr
Posts: 354
Registered: ‎10-19-2006
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Re: Book I, Chapter 1 -- Our introduction to Don Quixote...

[ Edited ]

I think you hit the nail on the head when you referred to a "broad range" of reading.  If a person reads from a broad range of sources and subjects, they're much more likely to be balanced and able to "ask the right question" when presented with an opinion or incorrect information.  Don Quixote had a very narrow range of reading.  We don't know if the narrow range of reading was a cause of the madness or another symptom of what was causing the madness. 

 

Rae

 

 


Choisya wrote:

I have been thinking further about the corrupting effect of literature and I think the difference may be that we have many more sources  to tap into whereas in Mary Wollstonecraft's and DQ's time, there were very few books around, no film, no radio and no TV.  A few people read the Bible but most heard sermons at church. The church also provided what graphic images there were by way of statues and stained glass etc.  Perhaps if your mind was (is?) unaccustomed to a broad range of reading matter and imagery, you were more susceptible to what stories and illustrations you came across and and were more likely to 'take them as gospel'?

 

 


bdNM wrote:

 


Choisya wrote:

 

I think perhaps reading one type of book could bring on a sort of 'madness' or imbalance.  Mary Wollstonecraft (and Flaubert) certainly thought that the diet of romances, which women of her day (like Madame Bovary) indulged in, led to their being unbalanced about the realities of life, especially married life.  Similarly, there is debate nowadays about whether a diet of violence in books or film/DVD can predispose peope towards violence. I think the jury is still out although there is no doubt that books can have a great influence on our lives.     

bdNM wrote:

In this opening chapter, we get an introduction to Don Quixote, or Alonzo Quixano, a gentleman living in La Mancha in southern Spain.  A couple of things to consider as we read -- what are we to make of Don Quixote's malady, the madness brought on by books?  Is Cervantes suggesting that reading a lot is dangerous (there but for the grace of God go we)?  Is his determination to enact the life of a knight errant relatively harmless?  Or is it harmful, to himself and others?  Is it something we need (as the Don engages in his travels and adventures, do we get a needed vicarious thrill?)?  In what ways does a book like Twain's A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court recall this work, with its combination of wonder and skepticism?

Good reading, and sharing...


 

 


 

I wonder if reading (or watching) has that effect, or, in the case of violent or other images, acts as some sort of safety valve. I get a sense, here in the US, that certain themes have taken hold and that getting past those themes is very difficult.  The "rugged individualist" theme seems to resonate quite strongly here, and it seems that it makes arguments for community action more difficult. In that sense, Western movies and novels contribute to promulgating and reinforcing the "man alone" image, which, in its extreme case leads to the sort of harsh and violent rhetoric we've seen recently in the health care discussion.  

 


 

 


 

 

Reader-Moderator
bdNM
Posts: 470
Registered: ‎11-22-2006
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Re: Book I, Chapter 1 -- Our introduction to Don Quixote...


rbehr wrote:

I think you hit the nail on the head when you referred to a "broad range" of reading.  If a person reads from a broad range of sources and subjects, they're much more likely to be balanced and able to "ask the right question" when presented with an opinion or incorrect information.  Don Quixote had a very narrow range of reading.  We don't know if the narrow range of reading was a cause of the madness or another symptom of what was causing the madness. 

 

Rae

 

 


Choisya wrote:

I have been thinking further about the corrupting effect of literature and I think the difference may be that we have many more sources  to tap into whereas in Mary Wollstonecraft's and DQ's time, there were very few books around, no film, no radio and no TV.  A few people read the Bible but most heard sermons at church. The church also provided what graphic images there were by way of statues and stained glass etc.  Perhaps if your mind was (is?) unaccustomed to a broad range of reading matter and imagery, you were more susceptible to what stories and illustrations you came across and and were more likely to 'take them as gospel'?

 

 


bdNM wrote:

 


Choisya wrote:

 

I think perhaps reading one type of book could bring on a sort of 'madness' or imbalance.  Mary Wollstonecraft (and Flaubert) certainly thought that the diet of romances, which women of her day (like Madame Bovary) indulged in, led to their being unbalanced about the realities of life, especially married life.  Similarly, there is debate nowadays about whether a diet of violence in books or film/DVD can predispose peope towards violence. I think the jury is still out although there is no doubt that books can have a great influence on our lives.     

bdNM wrote:

In this opening chapter, we get an introduction to Don Quixote, or Alonzo Quixano, a gentleman living in La Mancha in southern Spain.  A couple of things to consider as we read -- what are we to make of Don Quixote's malady, the madness brought on by books?  Is Cervantes suggesting that reading a lot is dangerous (there but for the grace of God go we)?  Is his determination to enact the life of a knight errant relatively harmless?  Or is it harmful, to himself and others?  Is it something we need (as the Don engages in his travels and adventures, do we get a needed vicarious thrill?)?  In what ways does a book like Twain's A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court recall this work, with its combination of wonder and skepticism?

Good reading, and sharing...


 

 


 

I wonder if reading (or watching) has that effect, or, in the case of violent or other images, acts as some sort of safety valve. I get a sense, here in the US, that certain themes have taken hold and that getting past those themes is very difficult.  The "rugged individualist" theme seems to resonate quite strongly here, and it seems that it makes arguments for community action more difficult. In that sense, Western movies and novels contribute to promulgating and reinforcing the "man alone" image, which, in its extreme case leads to the sort of harsh and violent rhetoric we've seen recently in the health care discussion.  

 


 

 


 

 


And the relative paucity of books compared to now and the limited number who could write books perhaps gave such learned people additional authority that today's pundits and authors don't have.  After all, when Sarah Palin can write a book (even an "as told to" book), it suggests that lots of people can do so.  And the Bible, for many, still has a great authority, and we still have a canon of literature, some of which most of us have read, and there's The Quotations of Chairman Mao, which had great authority for a time. 

Dignity, always dignity.
Wordsmith
maude40
Posts: 357
Registered: ‎10-19-2006
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Re: Book I, Chapter 1 -- Our introduction to Don Quixote...

It used to be quite common for people to believe the written word as gospel. I don't know if that was true in the time of this book, but Don Quixote seems to be a very impressionable person. He certainly had a passion for chivalry and the books he read made a true believer out of him. Yvonne

Wordsmith
maude40
Posts: 357
Registered: ‎10-19-2006
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Re: Book I, Chapter 1 -- Our introduction to Don Quixote...

In chapter I where Don Quixote is naming his horse, He settles on Rocinante, that is Hackafore. The dictionary meaning for hack is, an old worn out horse. Don Q says he is, "the first and foremost of all the hacks in the world." The first and foremost of all the old worn out horses in the world. That is quite an illustrious name for the horse of such a famous knight as Don Quixote believes himself to be. This is a very amusing, enjoyable book so far. Yvonne

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bdNM
Posts: 470
Registered: ‎11-22-2006
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Re: Book I, Chapter 1 -- Our introduction to Don Quixote...

And such a name for his horse (basically "previously a hack, now a noble steed") reflects Don Quixote's own self-promotion -- previously an hidalgo, now a caballero (at least after he gets knighted).  It seems silly in a way, but there is something charming and encouraging about someone who refuses to see himself solely as he is judged by the world, but strives to be something better.  In a way, I think it is something we are all called upon to do -- not to meekly accept our situation, but to somehow improve ourselves. 


maude40 wrote:

In chapter I where Don Quixote is naming his horse, He settles on Rocinante, that is Hackafore. The dictionary meaning for hack is, an old worn out horse. Don Q says he is, "the first and foremost of all the hacks in the world." The first and foremost of all the old worn out horses in the world. That is quite an illustrious name for the horse of such a famous knight as Don Quixote believes himself to be. This is a very amusing, enjoyable book so far. Yvonne


 

Dignity, always dignity.
Frequent Contributor
KristyR
Posts: 379
Registered: ‎11-01-2006
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Re: Book I, Chapter 1 -- Our introduction to Don Quixote...

I was glad you mentioned Twain's Connecticut Yankee.  (By the way, how do I stop underlining once I'm done typing a title.  I had to cancel my post because it underlined the whole thing!)  I immediately thought of that book when Don Quixote was trying on his armor.  Twain's descriptions of the armor and how uncomfortable it was had me giggling through most of that chapter.  From some of the things mentioned in the introduction the two books also sound similar in being funny, yet uncomfortable at the same time.

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Peppermill
Posts: 6,768
Registered: ‎04-04-2007
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Re: Book I, Chapter 1 -- Our introduction to Don Quixote...

[ Edited ]

Kristy -- thx for your post and comments.  I have not read Twain's Connecticut Yankee.

 

 

.Getting underline or italic or bold to turn off can be tricky.  I just added Connecticut Yankee using the Add Product feature.  I deleted part of the title and to add the period at the end, I had to play around -- it wanted to keep on underlining.  (basically, I did a carriage return, entered a space and period, and then cut and pasted them back to the first line.)

 

Usually, its not that bad.  If one turns underline on, generally one can turn it off by hitting it again.  Another possibility is to enter all text without formatting, then go back and highlight what one wants to format and hit the wanted format key, underline, italics, bold.

 

Hope this helps. :smileysurprised:  Ask again if it doesn't.  :smileyvery-happy:  :smileysad:

 

Again, welcome

"Seize the moments of happiness, love and be loved! That is the only reality in the world, all else is folly. It is the one thing we are interested in here." -- Leo Tolstoy
Frequent Contributor
KristyR
Posts: 379
Registered: ‎11-01-2006
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Re: Book I, Chapter 1 -- Our introduction to Don Quixote...

Thanks Peppermill, I will give those suggestions a try.  I have a mac computer and I've noticed in the past that some things don't seem to work the same way for me as for someone on a pc.

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deaver
Posts: 35
Registered: ‎02-04-2009
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Re: Book I, Chapter 1 -- Our introduction to Don Quixote...

I also am finding the book very comical.  However, it is getting old and I am stuck.  I will just keep reading however.  I've never read a book this old before and parts are hard to get through.

Distinguished Bibliophile
Peppermill
Posts: 6,768
Registered: ‎04-04-2007
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Re: Book I, Chapter 1 -- Our introduction to Don Quixote...

 


deaver wrote:

I also am finding the book very comical.  However, it is getting old and I am stuck.  I will just keep reading however.  I've never read a book this old before and parts are hard to get through.


 

 

Deaver -- thanks for your post!

 

I tried several times in the past to read DQ and never succeeded.  Now I am at about Chapter 41 in Book II and will definitely stay with it to the end.

 

In some ways it is tedious and one story seems like another. But this time I am also finding something pleasant about the repetition -- maybe now in my sixties, life looked back upon seems more like similar stories told again and again with slightly different twists and slants.  Or maybe I just concocted a silly string of words -- rather like Cervantes or Sancho or DQ or one of the other characters. 

 

Bottom line -- I am glad to finally be reading (or more accurately, listening to) the whole thing.

 

Look forward to more of your comments and insights.

 

Pepper

"Seize the moments of happiness, love and be loved! That is the only reality in the world, all else is folly. It is the one thing we are interested in here." -- Leo Tolstoy