Thursday, July 28, 2005

An unanswerable Plath post

Two days in a row now, I've seen different women reading The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath on the subway. I see lots of people reading Harry Potter, and that doesn't surprise me. But it's rare to see a classic appear twice in a row like that. I wondered: What if the two readers are in the same class or the same book club? What if they're in separate classes, but have the same assignment? Is a book about a young woman interning in New York during an especially hot summer more likely to be read by young women in the city taking refuge from a heat wave in the air-conditioned subways? How many people are reading the book this week? Just in New York? Around the country? Today? Right now?

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