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Fave novels: women dig the classics, while men are stuck in puberty

Bookninja links to online magazine Reason‘s article about a “Favourite novel?” survey of hundreds of people and, while the ladies books were somewhat of a yawnfest with predictable picks like Jane Eyre, Gone With the Wind, Wuthering Heights, Pride and Prejudice, Middlemarch, Anna Karenina, Beloved, and The Handmaid’s Tale, there were a couple of nerdly dark horses like The Lord of the Rings, The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, and Catch 22.

The real fun started when the surveyors, British cultural historians Lisa Jardine and Annie Watkins, asked men what their fave was. “For starters, many male respondents took issue with the question itself, either refusing to name a text or picking a non-fiction work instead of a novel,” according to the article. Plus, the men were pretty pedestrian in their picks, with their choices mainly limited to four books, including The Stranger, One Hundred Years of Solitude, The Catcher in the Rye, and Slaughterhouse Five — in contrast, the ladies were able to “cough up about 200 different titles.”

And the cherry on top? Jardine couldn’t resist a little trash-talk against the opposite sex — she “cheeklily told the Sydney Morning Herald that ‘the men’s list was all angst and Orwell. Sort of puberty reading’.”

Related links:
Read the Reason story here