I’ve continually edited this list as I’ve tried to make it more practical. For example, War and Peace is a remarkable book, but at over 1000 pages it’s enormous and thus difficult to include on any syllabus when you’re trying to cover a lot of literary ground in (relatively) limited space. Originally I had an entire course dedicated to Tolstoy, but I combined it with the Dostoevsky course to create space for other authors. That meant I had to make some difficult choices. Here is a list of what has been removed:


Eliot. T.S.On Poetry and Poets
Forster, E.M.Aspects of the Novel
Hobbes, ThomasLeviathan
Hume, DavidAn Inquiry Concerning Human Understanding
Kierkegaard, SorenThe Concept of Irony
Kierkegaard, SorenThe Concept of Anxiety
Nag Hammadi Scriptures
Maimonides, MosesThe Guide for the Perplexed
Marx, Karl and Engels, FriedrichThe Communist Manifesto
Paine, ThomasCommon Sense
Pascal, BlaisePensees
Rousseau, Jean-JacquesThe Confessions
Sayings of the Desert Fathers


ApuleiusThe Golden Ass
Bellow, SaulThe Adventures of Augie March
DeLillo, DonWhite Noise
Dickens, CharlesBleak House
Dostoevsky, FyodorThe Brothers Karamazov
Dostoevsky, FyodorThe Idiot
Hemingway, ErnestA Farewell to Arms
James, HenryThe Turn of the Screw
Lawrence, D.H.Sons and Lovers
Pynchon, ThomasGravity’s Rainbow
Salinger, J.D.The Catcher in the Rye
StendhalThe Red and the Black
Stevenson, Robert LouisDr. Jekyl and Mr. Hyde
Tolstoy, LeoThe Cossacks
Tolstoy, LeoWar and Peace
John UpdikeRabbit, Run
Wells, H.G.The Island of Dr. Moreau
West, NathanaelThe Day of the Locust
Wright, RichardNative Son


AristophanesThe Birds
Beckett, SamuelEndgame
Beckett, SamuelKrapp’s Last Tape
Seneca the YoungerPhaedra
Williams, TennesseeThe Glass Menagerie


Eschenbach, Wolfram VonParzival
HesiodTheogony ; Works and Days
Ibsen, HenrikPeer Gynt