You Shouldn't Force Yourself to Read the Classics

Wednesday, May 20

By Ariana Noghreh

Classic books are risky little things. You hear so many good things about a certain book that you become eager to buy and read it because it HAS to be good, right? But most of the time, it’s so boring that you have to close the book after a few pages or chapters in. You then start doubting your intelligence, your worth, and your taste. It’s totally normal and it’s not your fault for not liking books like Great Expectations or Metamorphosis. You’re not supposed to love everything you read, especially when it’s what “everyone” loves. But is “everyone” really the right word to use? Do they really love those books or are they only pretending?

It’s not difficult to pretend you like a movie in hopes of not shattering someone’s expectations, so why should a book be any different? It isn’t, that’s why!

So far, out of the many people I know in my life, only a quarter are book readers, and out of those, only one-fifths like the classics. That equals to about 2 people. I say about because one only reads some specific classics while the other reads anything he gets his hands on. 

Don’t beat yourself up if you’re not a fan of Charles Dickens or even Shakespeare. We all have our own special cups of tea. So you can’t relate to Hamlet or some other character in some other play, that’s not a big deal. At least you read a part of their work. Even if you couldn’t bring yourself to finish them, you still are more informed than the average non-reader. So that on its own deserves a pat on the back. 

And if you’re not interested in even trying out the classics, don’t! You can STILL pat yourself on the back! Unless it’s expected of you at school or work or whoever and wherever you consider “authority”, then there’s no need to put yourself in the uncomfortable position of reading lines and lines of old prose and poetry, with words that are no longer used today, just to tell someone “Oh yeah, I’ve read the classic book of X written by so-and-so.”. 

Life is too short to pretend you like something, so don’t! Live life the way you want to and read and watch the things you want to. You won’t be called a quitter if you stop reading a book or stop watching a TV show because you don’t enjoy it anymore. 

We’re here to enjoy our days and use them as well as we can doing the things we love, so no one can force you to spend the majority of your time to do things you don’t want and that don’t benefit you in any way. (My main point refers to hobbies and other things you may do in a day. School or work are not a part of that, especially since I have no say in what you should or should not be doing in those regards.)

Do the things you enjoy. Don’t do them because they’d make you more popular. Don’t follow everyone else into doing those things. So do them because you want to, that’s what matters.

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