Welcome to Withering Bites: a blog created to make the literary canon accessible to the masses. Born out of a shared frustration between two friends: a first-year English grad student’s dissatisfaction and disillusionment with her chosen course of study, and a chick with two years of “real life” under her belt and a loss of people willing to listen to her rants about Dante and Spenser.
Linked by a common adoration of the written word (and a history of being roommates and bffs as undergraduates), the authors have elected to plant an imaginary flag in this metaphorical corner of the internet and use it as a place to discuss literature, both as works of art and as the stuff that keeps academics in business.
Each week, the authors select a tome (or selections from a tome) to discuss on this site. The length and complexity of each work determines how many weeks they will spend on it: a poem may get one week, while a novel like Tom Jones may get several. Courtney provides a textual analysis on Mondays, and Wednesdays Michelle breaks down a particular theorist or form of criticism in relation to the work. Fridays feature guest bloggers, or rants from Courtney regarding the curious careful practice of adaptation. If you care to follow along, please consult the relevant sidebar item, where we list upcoming titles and relevant dates.
The authors would also like to add a particular note:
[We] acknowledge that a majority of the texts we will be discussing come from a canon that is mostly white, mostly male, and rarely dips below the educated middle class. We will, of course, take reading recommendations; we will, of course, go beyond those boundaries that have been set by our own inclinations and interests; but we feel no shame in pursuing what we like and discussing the books and stories that interest us, though they happen to come from a largely homogeneous canon.
Enjoy the website and feel free to learn more about the authors via their respective pages.