Harper Lee writes article for Oprah.

…and if that weren’t bad enough, she pulls some eye-rollingly stereotypical “things were so much better when things were so much worse” bullshit.


The article is about how she came to be a reader in 1930’s rural Alabama, when books were scarce.

:rolleyes: Quit being a crotchety old snot. Books are not out of fashion. They’re still out there. They probably sell more of them now than at any other point in history. There are still many, many, many avid readers in the world, and more ways than ever before for them to be exposed to new ideas.

I suppose writing a Pulitzer-winning novel, and one of the most beloved works in American history gives one a bit of latitude, but climb off your high horse, huh? You’ve lived to see the world make significant promise toward the dream you espoused in To Kill a Mockingbird. One might think you’d appreciate progress a bit more.

It doesn’t sound like she’s criticizing progress, just the fact that people don’t appreciate books as much as they once did.

Ogre. Have you even read the magazine or are you just trashing a CNN news blurb with maybe one relevant snippet from the letter Harper Lee wrote?

I can think of far worse things than disdaining the reminiscences of an 80-year old’s childhood memories of rural life and the scarcity of books. I’ll bet you’re loads of fun at family reunions and wedding anniversaries.

I disagree. It seems to me that she’s playing the “kids these days!” geezer role, and it suits her badly.

Besides, even if she were criticizing that people don’t appreciate books these days, it’s horse puckey. Lots and lots of people appreciate books now…probably far more than did so in her heyday.

Whenever I see her name, I think I’m reading her income tax return.
“Harper, Lee” 1040 EZ.

Flippancy aside, I would very much like to read the entire letter; if only because it was written by Harper Lee.
There are some folks, who are, for lack of a better term, so cool, that we should pay attention to and consider their opinions.

No, I haven’t read the whole letter, but what? Do you imagine that she says something in it that completely reverses the meaning of the insulting phrase at the end, and makes it all sunshine and lollipops? Let’s see, maybe “Ignore the clauses after this, cos I’m just dicking around, but now, 75 years later in an abundant society where people have laptops, cell phones, iPods, and minds like empty rooms, I still plod along with books.”

Fuck that. I can’t fucking stand a “ah, the good ol’ days were so much better than they are now” mentality, especially from someone who is 1) as intelligent and well-read, and 2) as socially progressive as Harper Lee. It’s utter, utter bullshit. Of course I’m fascinated with how she became a reader in rural Alabama. Hell, I even asked her about it when I met her in Monroeville once. What I’m not fascinated with is how she seems to have contempt for today’s “people with minds like empty rooms.”

Oh, and next time, read for comprehension.

I comprehend that her opinions and comments are an order of magnitude more important than yours or mine.

Well, sure, when she’s talking about 1950’s racial injustice, but I’d sure like to see her say something that rises above your average cantankerous AARP-sponsored Andy Rooney rant.

Harper Lee is still alive??

I totally understand what you mean.

There’s nothing wrong with reminiscing and discussing the differences and similarites between past and present (and what was better or worse). And there is nothing wrong with saying, “I personally don’t care for or use modern technology.” But she was making a judgment there. And it’s not like it was off the cuff.

I wonder how many people could read in Alabama then compared to now…and how many had access to as many books as now?

Once upon a time there was no such thing as books, either…

Ironically, the stereotype that people over, say 65, can’t do technology…is rapidly becoming untrue.

Now go email your mother.

SNIP… “dicking” … SNIP… “Fuck that”…SNIP… “fucking”… SNIP…“utter bullshit”… SNIP…

You’re not “fascinated” by what you characterize as “her seeming contempt” for people with minds like empty rooms. But your obscenity-laden contempt for the opinions of an intelligent, long lived, well-read, social progressive is laudable.

I’ll work on reading for comprehension if you’ll work on reigning in making enormously hypocritical statements.

Are you even faintly aware this isn’t the Pit?

Quite. However, you come in with thinly veiled insults, don’t be surprised if you get them right back in the teeth.

Oh, and profanity is allowed outside the Pit, regardless of what nanny posters like to think.

I have enormous respect for Ms. Lee. Enough respect that I won’t treat her like an ailing, mentally-unstable elderly relation. She has a very sharp mind, and always has. Sharp enough to realize that her insulting “kids these days” statement is lazy and devoid of worth.

One more thing: fuck!

I looked all over the place, on the oprah website for a link to the letter. All I got was a “sneak peek” of next months issue of “O”. wheee!

Yeah, me too. :frowning:

Oooh, is this the one where Oprah appears on the cover?

Who’s Oprah? I’ve never heard of him.

Now, this statment isn’t even trying. Do you comprehend that her opinions on the subject of your life experiences are an order of magnitude more important than your own? Cut the hero-worship and begin debating intelligently.

Debate what? The article has not yet been published.

I’m glad I’m not the only one to think that.