The biggest book that you have ever read

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Luís
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Postby Luís » 2003-10-18, 12:16

I pronounce it [vɛɫ'ðaɫ] :shock:
Quot linguas calles, tot homines vales

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It's beyond my skills...

Postby Weldal » 2003-10-18, 18:22

Well, I realize that it's very difficult to explain in a written way phonems to English native speakers, because the English language has as its main feature the non regular way of pronouncing vowels at least compared to the same written vowels.
I mean, on the contrary of other languages in which pronounce variations are few and mainly when two vowels are together, in English vowels can have different pronounces in different words and different vowels can have the same pronounce.
There are several instances: "i" usually sounds as [ai], but it can keep the original [i] ("ee" for English native speakers) in some Latin originated words... "know" and "now" should have the same pronounce, but they don't have... Well, there are several other examples, then I think that explaining what is an open regular [a] is beyond my skills... :|
But a last attempt: the same "a" of "aluminum"... :wink:

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Postby darkina » 2003-10-18, 19:23

(back on topic, I just say 'Weldal' in a probably Italian way...and yes '-al' like aluminiunm...pronounced my way tho, dunno about the correct English...)
I'm currently reading War and Peace and I'm stuck... more than 1 month to read just 250 pages! :shock: This is surely a record of slowth for me, as I've never taken more than 1 month to read anything... This is of course longest, yes probably the longest book I've ever attempted to read, but I had planned to do it in no more than 3 months...at this rate it will take me at least 4...
век живи, век учись, а дураком помрешь

Pleasures remain, so does the pain

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Re: It's beyond my skills...

Postby Psi-Lord » 2003-10-18, 19:44

Weldal wrote:But a last attempt: the same "a" of "aluminum"... :wink:

Hmm, maybe not, Weldal — General American has that 'a' as a schwa...

/@'lu:.mI.n@m/

(Unless that is what you meant and I've misunderstood that...)
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Postby Sarabi » 2003-10-18, 19:48

I sort of pronounce is like aluminum, except I have been saying it with a very brief vowel. :)
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I think of reading "War and Peace" in 2004...

Postby Weldal » 2003-10-20, 10:14

Darkroom wrote:I'm currently reading War and Peace and I'm stuck... more than 1 month to read just 250 pages! This is surely a record of slowth for me, as I've never taken more than 1 month to read anything... This is of course longest, yes probably the longest book I've ever attempted to read, but I had planned to do it in no more than 3 months...at this rate it will take me at least 4...


I think of reading "War and Peace" in 2004. But I think that I will read it during at least 6 months, no less, since "O Tempo e o Vento" (by Érico Veríssimo), with its 2900 pages in 3 volumes, took me about 10 months to read...
I've just started to read "For whom the bell tolls" (by Ernest Hemingway) right now...

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Postby Sarabi » 2003-10-21, 20:51

I could not stand War and Peace, for I was uninterested in languages at the time of my attempt.
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Postby Angasule » 2003-12-06, 8:45

Borges was in favour of the Argentinian dictatorship (that's why he didn't get a Nobel), no surprise he's against democracy, what's next, Stalin against capitalism? :)
The lord of the rings is without a doubt a single book, sometimes edited in three or six volumes (plus appendices). Quoting Tolkien (Letters, number165, PS right after the signature) "The book is not of course a 'trilogy'. That and the titles of the volumes was a fudge thought necessary for publication, owing to the length and cost. There is no real division into 3, nor is any one part intelligible alone. The story was conceived and written as a whole and the only natural divisions are the 'books' I-VI (which originally had titles)." I have a 1 volume edition, and one thing Tolkien forgot to mention among the reasons for the 3 volume edition is comfort, try reading the beast in a bus :) There have been some 6 volume editions (one of them is a movie edition, I believe).
And I think Lotr is the longest book I've read, at least I think The Stand is shorter. I don't know what would be the most difficult thing I've read... does language difficulty come into play? I've been reading Trainspotting in Norwegian forever, also the Eddas in Old Icelandic, but the worst is an Egyptian story written in hieroglyphics, that was a total pain to read!
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Postby ekalin » 2003-12-06, 10:38

Angasule wrote:There have been some 6 volume editions (one of them is a movie edition, I believe).


I have one of them. The old Brazilian edition was published as six volumes.

When it started to get famous again, they've retranslated the book (because that first translation was crappy). And this edition is published either as a single volume colossal book or as three volumes. But it is clearly one book only.
This gubblick contains many nosklarkish English flutzpahs, but the overall pluggandisp can be glorked from context. – David Moser

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Literature Nobel Prize: politics

Postby Weldal » 2003-12-07, 15:10

Angasule wrote:Borges was in favour of the Argentinian dictatorship (that's why he didn't get a Nobel)


Yes, politics plays a key role in the nomination to the Literature Nobel Prize. Every now and then an anonymous writer wins the Noble prize only because he/she is persecuted by some dictatorship in his/her country, or something like this.
Personally I think that at least one Brazilian writer on the level of Carlos Drummond de Andrade, Jorge Amado and Érico Veríssimo could have won the Noble Prize, but before the great Portuguese writer José Saramago in 1998, the whole Portuguese language had never won such prize... :shock:
What do these guys of the Swedish Academy have against us ? :evil:

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Postby Luís » 2003-12-07, 15:24

And José Saramago is a bit weird himself. Maybe that's why the Academy liked him? ;)

He has beaten up journalists, he said Jews were like Nazis in a trip to Israel, he's a convict communist, a fan of Brezhnev, excomunicated by the Catholic Church, and has "exiled" himself in Spain because he thinks the Portuguese government is too right-wing (besides being married to a woman that could be his daughter) :shock:
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Postby Angasule » 2003-12-07, 20:30

I take the 'journalist' thing bit a grain of salt (if you have seen Argentinian TV, you know why hehe) without more information, I agree with him about the israelis, I find it appalling that someone would go to jail for his political ideas, no comment on Brezhnev (I really have no comment, can't remember much about him), and I better don't get started on the Church and right wing governments of today, and I have no problem with people dating someone much older/younger.
So, weirdness is in the eye of the beholder. I find it extremely weird that people like to wear red sneakers.
But anyway, does Saramago write long books? :)
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Except communism I agree with the rest

Postby Weldal » 2003-12-07, 21:27

Angasule wrote:But anyway, does Saramago write long books? :)


Not so much... The longest book by Saramago which I have read was "Godspel according to Jesus Christ" with 450 pages...

I think that except about Brejnev and communism in all the rest I can agree with Saramago...
Journalists sometimes suck... :roll:
What happens in Palestine is a real tragedy, in my opinion Ariel Sharon does a genocide... :roll:
The Catholic Church nowadays is one of the most anachronic institutions in the world, they dared to say that they are against the use of condoms... :shock:
Right wing governments are very good only for the ones who love to earn money without working, only taking advantage of the so called "financial market"... :evil:

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Postby Angasule » 2003-12-08, 3:59

Oh, I don't agree with Saramago about communism, but I don't think someone should be convicted for his ideas.
How about speed reading? I read a book called Crimenes Indescriptibles last night, 250 pages in about 6 hours (I stopped for reading and some chatting :) ). I read The Hobbit much faster several years ago, but can't remember how fast...
And longest book in a foreign language would be... Unfinished Tales by JRR Tolkien, I think (which I read in English).
A better burden | may no man bear

For wanderings wide than wisdom;

It is better than wealth | on unknown ways,

And in grief a refuge it gives.

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Postby mvepep » 2004-03-17, 12:48

I don't think that politics has anything to do with the Nobel Prize for literature. Last years winner, J.M Coetzee, is a South African (as I am) prior to his winning the Nobel prize I'd never heard of him, much less read anything by him, however after he won I read some stuff by him. The book that won him the award, and various other works by him and I have to say that they were brilliant. About those obscure writers from some obscure country, they do win with good reason. Perhaps they aren't the greatest writer in the world but the story that they've told has been wonderful as books that are based on real life tend to be. Now to get back to the main topic, for me the lngest book i've read is a toss up between Lord of the Roings and War and Peace, which were both brilliant.

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Postby Kubi » 2004-03-17, 13:04

I'd have to count pages, but I guess Lord of The Rings or Les Misérables would make it...
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Postby Sarabi » 2004-03-20, 15:52

YAY! I finished reading Les Misérables the other night! Can you believe it took me six months to read it (although I stopped entirely sometimes because I was too busy)? Anyway, it got more and more interesting as I went along, but it was a very gradual change. The last 200 pages were amazing. This is now my favorite book! :P
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Les Misérables

Postby kibo » 2004-03-20, 16:44

Queen Ehlana wrote:YAY! I finished reading Les Misérables the other night! Can you believe it took me six months to read it (although I stopped entirely sometimes because I was too busy)? Anyway, it got more and more interesting as I went along, but it was a very gradual change. The last 200 pages were amazing. This is now my favorite book! :P


:shock: wow, 6 months.

I wanted to read Les Misérables several months ago, after I saw an animated film based on it. I was intrigued. I even found an abridged edition of it in English. But I had other books to read. (still do) :(
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Postby Sarabi » 2004-03-20, 16:49

I don't like the sound of "abridged." I read the whole thing and loved it. I haven't seen the film, but I know it can't do this book justice. :)
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I think of reading it still this year...

Postby Weldal » 2004-03-20, 17:24

Presently I'm reading "War and Peace" (in Portuguese) and I think that it will take more 5 months, since I started it 1 month ago, but I think of reading "Les Misérables" still this year (in French, of course). Maybe after a short book, placed on purpose between "War and Peace" and "Les Misérables")... :wink:
By the way, in 1998 I watched the movie in the cinema, Liam Neeson was Jean Valjean...


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