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January 27, 2004

I have finished my reading assignment

I have finished my reading assignment. I have finished reading "Watership Down" and here are my thoughts on the book:

1. I thought the cover of the paperback edition showing the "cute wittle bunny wabbit" did not reflect all the death and destruction going on in the book. They should have selected another rabbit photo.

2. I thought the inclusion of the seagull, Kehaar, although central to the story, was kind of cheesy. I cringed whenever the story talked about him and his way of talking.

3. However, I could imagine mice talking like the mouse in the story and I enjoyed the story about El-ahrairah, the Rowsby Woof and Fairy Wogdog. I actually laughed when reading that part. Having grown up around cats and now having to live with my wife's black labrador (worthless piece of doghide), I can imagine this dog talking just like Rowsby Woof. I don't know how people can say that dogs are more intelligent than cats since all my experience has show that to be the opposite.

4. When I was growning up, we had two rabbits whose names I no longer remember. And no, we didn't eat them. They eventually died of natural causes. My dad let us keep them since he was able to "harvest" all the rabbit hraka for the compost heap/garden. But, during the entire time that we had them, I never remember once that they ever backed down from a fight with a cat. On the contrary, they would actively chase away any cats that they noticed getting to close to their "territory" or that they happened to just catch lollygagging around the garden. So either our rabbits were exceptional fighters like Bigwig or Woundwort or our cats were really wussies. I think a little of both.

5. I, of course, enjoyed immensely all stories about myself, the Great El-ahrairah. They should have told more.

All in all, the book wasn't all that bad and it wasn't a waste of time to read it. Thankfully, I wasn't doing this for a school class since finding symbolism in the story is something I wasn't really able to do (I'm an engineer, not a lib ed major. 1+1=2, not 1+1=5 on Thursday during a full moon). Other than rabbits like to live free in uncrowded warrens where they can reproduce at will.

Posted by El-ahrairah at January 27, 2004 01:11 AM | TrackBack
You, sir, are a philistine. Watership Down is nothing BUT symbolism. You as El-ahrairah? Humph. Humph, I say. Posted by: Meryl Yourish at January 27, 2004 11:39 PM
Well, I guess you are right. I am a philistine since I really didn't see any of the symbolism in the book. I just the read the book for the story and didn't look beyond to what the author was really trying to say. If there was any symbolism, it wasn't apparent as say, "Animal Farm". Posted by: El-ahrairah at January 28, 2004 08:19 AM
The book is rife with symbolism. Hazel and Fiver and all the other hrair represent the poor non-unionized workers of the world, Bigwig and Silver are the revolutionaries and protestors that stand up for them, and Cowslip's warren is the United Nations. Efrafra is, of course, the US; General Woundwort is a cloned mutant of Richard Nixon and Ronald Reagan who takes the form of George Bush. Kehaar represents the aliens who have been trying to contact us since 1949. All of it is wrapped up in a dreary postmodern allegory of capitalist existentialism, with some overtones of Ayn Rand and poetry from Chairman Mao. Don't you see it? It's plain as day to me. Posted by: Captain Holly at January 28, 2004 07:21 PM
Here Cap'n Holly, you forgot your tin-hat. Say "Hi" to Elvis for me. Posted by: El-ahrairah at January 28, 2004 11:55 PM
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