Archive for category Voting

America, the Beautiful

Photo by cayusa at Flickr

From Ancient Greece we’re traveling to America….but I’m not yet sure just where in time we’re going to stop! Here are four themed tours. Which would you most like to see featured on an upcoming Circuit?

Please note that we’ve had Americans on the lists in the past; we’ll try to give those authors a chance again at some point for future tours. For now, though, these are the authors/themes we’re going to decide from among.

Colonial and Revolutionary Thought: Defining A New Nation

  • Anne Bradford, Phyllis Wheatley, Benjamin Franklin, Thomas Jefferson, James Madison, Thomas Paine, Washington Irving.

American Romanticism: A Unique American Style

  • James Fenimore Cooper, Edgar Allan Poe, Walt Whitman, Emily Dickinson, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Herman Melville, the Transcendentalists.

American Turn-of-the-Century Naturalism: Social Issues in Literature

  • Edith Wharton, Theodore Dreiser, Upton Sinclair, Stephen Crane, Jack London, Frank Norris

The Lost Generation: Experimentation in Style and Form

  • Ezra Pound, Gertrude Stein, Ernest Hemingway, F. Scott Fitzgerald, T.S. Eliot, Waldo Pierce

I’d love your input, regardless of whether you will be able to participate in the tour.



Choose the Next Circuit: Ancient Classics Survey

Although I haven’t yet determined the exact dates, January’s Classics Circuit will run at the end of January. It’s time for the Classics Circuit to hearken back to the first definition of “Classic,” those works of classical antiquity.

classic: A literary work of Ancient Greece or Rome” (, “classic” definition 1)

Our January tour will focus either on the Greek Classics or the Roman Classics.

It’s All Greek to Me: The Ancient Greeks wrote epic poetry, plays, and histories, including Homer, Aeschylus, Sophocles, Euripides, Aristophanes, Herodotus, and Sappho.

Roman Holiday: From Virgil to Horace, Ovid, Seneca, and Apuleius, the Romans’ poetry, epigrams, essays, and plays have an integral spot in the Western canon.

Which would you like to see featured on the Circuit?

SURVERY is closed. The next tour will feature the ANCIENT GREEKS.

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Second Chance Survey

The next tour will be one of those persons who lost a previous poll for a Classics Circuit. The sign up will be at the end of October and the tour will run the beginning of December, for one of two weeks.

Please let us know which author(s) you’d like the Classics Circuit to feature. This poll will be open until Friday night, October 15.


The December Circuit will feature ANTHONY TROLLOPE.

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Poll: August Japanese Classic Tour Participation

In the Northern Hemisphere, at least, it is summer and sunshine may be beckoning us away from the computer. Besides that, it seems many are becoming increasingly busy with Book Blogger Appreciation Week responsibilities and festivities and other online responsibilities. For these reasons, I’m pondering letting The Classics Circuit take a break until late September or October.

I had intended to open sign up this week for the Land of the Rising Sun: Meiji-era Japanese Literature tour. This tour leaves the West, where we have been, and gives us a glimpse of some classic Eastern literature, particularly that of 1868-1920 Japan. It include the classic and prolific novelist Natsume Soseki (of Kusamakura and I Am A Cat fame), poets like Masaoka Shiki, and short story writers like Naoya Shiga and Ryunosuke Akutagawa.

However, if this time of year is bad for you, then I’m happy to postpone the tour until a different time of the year, when more might be able to join in. Please take the one question survey below. If people seem interested, we’ll go ahead with the sign up later this week (probably Wednesday). If not, we’ll let The Classics Circuit have a little summer break.

(Note that after you answer the question, the survey asks for your name and email. This is a function of the survey plugin, and I do not know how to turn it off. Please do not fell any obligation to add your name to your answer; it does not matter to me!)

Survey ended

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White Nights along the Neva: Vote for the June Circuit

Today’s the last day to take our Feedback Survey! We’re using this as a way to make the Classics Circuit even better, and it’s your chance to influence the future of th

e Circuit. It’s pretty brief, so please take a moment to fill it out if you haven’t yet done so.

To coincide with White Nights (the days around midsummer during which the sun never sets in St. Petersburg), we will be hosting a Russian themed tour beginning mid-June. Rather than selecting an author, this poll is to select a time period:

  • Imperial Russia: nineteenth-century authors including Leo Tolstoy, Fyodor Dostoevsky, Nikolai Gogol, Alexander Pushkin, Anton Chekhov, and Ivan Turgenev.
  • Soviet Russia: early twentieth-century authors including Mikhail Bulgakov, Boris Pasternak, Anna Akhmatova, Nina Berberova, and Leon Trotsky.

The survey has now been closed.

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I Love Paris in the Spring Time: Vote for the April Circuit

We love Paris in the springtime, and in April we will be traveling to Paris to visit one of these four classic nineteenth century French authors.

  • Alexandre Dumas (1802-1870) is one of the most widely read French novelists today. His historical novels of high adventure were often serialized, capturing the attention of the French public then and entertaining generations still.
  • Victor Hugo (1802-1885) contributed largely to the romantic movement in France, through his essays, stories, novels, poetry, and plays. His works focus on the social and political issues of his time. Although most well known in France for his poetry, his novels (such as Les Miserables) are more well known outside of the country.
  • George Sand (1804-1876) was the pen name for Amantine Aurore Lucile Dupin, who is called the first female novelist of France. Although she lived an unorthodox life for nineteenth century France, Sand did not describe herself as a feminist. Her fiction focuses on the restrictions and challenges that women face because of social class and gender.
  • Emile Zola (1840-1902) became an important contributor to the literary school of naturalism. He wrote numerous short stories, four plays, and more than a dozen books. His books focus on how environment and heredity inevitably affect human character.

Which author would you like to visit the Circuit in April?


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Vote for the March Circuit Author: Modern Genre Classics

It’s time to vote for the March tour. We decided to go with something a little bit lighter: Modern Genre Classics. While there are many genres represented in the classics, here are just four that we’d love to see on tour. Read the rest of this entry »

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Vote: Americans on Tour

Our January-to-February tour will be an American.

If a large number of people vote for a particular author, we may open more than one American tour. These subsequent tours would overlap. The first tour would begin the first week of January, the second would begin the second week, etc. Each tour would run Monday through Friday until all participants have been assigned a day. Therefore, the tour will probably extend into February, especially if there is more than one author joining the Circuit.

Author names link to Wikipedia if you’d like to get more detailed information about any of these authors.

The survey will be open until Saturday, 31 October 2009 8:00 a.m. CDT. The survey has been closed.

Samuel Longhorn Clemens, better known as Mark Twain (1835-1910), has been said to have written the “Great American Novel” (The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn), and his humorous and satiric novels, stories, and essays have always enjoyed immense popularity.

In many of her novels and short stories, Edith Wharton (1862-1937) used dramatic irony to criticize the upper-class pre-World War I society in New York City; her most well-known novels are The Age of Innocence and The House of Mirth.

Willa Cather (1873-1947) is best known for her depictions of frontier life (particularly the conditions of ordinary people’s lives) on the Great Plains in novels such as O Pioneers! and My Antonia.

John Steinbeck (1902-1968) wrote novels, stories, and nonfiction collections with a very American setting; his writing won him the distinction of Nobel Laureate in 1962, and The Grapes of Wrath won the Pulitzer Prize in 1939.

The survey has been closed.

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Vote for the November 2009 Circuit

Based on some of your suggestions and the committee’s deliberations, we’ve narrowed down the November 2009 Circuit to one of these excellent Victorian writers. The links below go to Wikipedia if you’d like further information.

(A note on the suggestions: For this tour, we worked with those that we’ve received from the various comments circulating about this project. Please give more suggestions via the Suggest a Tour link so we’ll have more to work with for next tour!)

The survey will be open until Sunday, 27 September 2009 11:59 p.m. CST.

Wilkie Collins (1824-1889) wrote in a variety of genres (novels, short stories, plays, and non-fiction) but is best known for The Woman in White, a sensation novel, and The Moonstone, considered the first English detective mystery.

Under the pen name George Eliot (1819-1880), Mary Anne Evans wrote novels and poetry and is best known for Middlemarch and Silas Marner.

Elizabeth Gaskell (1810-1865) wrote novels, short stories, and a biography of Charlotte Bronte, with North and South as possibly her best known novel.

Anthony Trollope (1815-1882) wrote primarily novels with a sprinkling of nonfiction, with the novels in his Chronicles of Barsetshire the best known.

Please let us know which author you’d like to see for the tour! Thanks for giving your input.

ETA: This survey is now closed.

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