We all had to, at one time or another read a book from what is generally considered the list of “classics” when we were in high school or college. Recently I have been reflecting on the fact that although I got out of those assignments relatively unscathed and with a decent grade, I don’t remember reading any of them. That is unfortunate, as I have come to realize that as I reflect on much of the popular writing today that tries to pass as literature (“50 shades” anyone??), I have missed out on, or at least forgotten, some truly great writing.
I first got convicted of this after actually reading (skimming? wading through?) “50 shades” – the main character’s favorite book is Tess of the D'Urbervilles by Thomas Hardy. A friend recommended that reading this might actually redeem us from our jaunt into the world of “50 shades”. Thus my classical literary journey over the summer began.
Other classics I read were Great Expectations and Anna Karenina (which I just finished).
Not only am I enjoying the writing, but also I love how these classics are reminding me of the legacy that literature provides for us. We can immerse ourselves into another culture, time, style of dress, society, country…it is really fascinating to not only enjoy the story but enjoy it from the perspective of the author that wrote it and the people he or she wrote it for and find that the stories and the messages are timeless.
Even though this is fictional writing for the most part, there is a lesson here about the information and learning preserved in these books. The context of the story, the context of the writing, the perspective of the creators and users of the writing are all important to understanding, appreciating, and getting value from it. That is much like LDA’s approach to data archiving. Your data has context, meaning, and perspective that are all important and the needs to be preserved in order to fully leverage the value of that information. If we cut it up, extracted it, mapped it, moved it to a new data model and context, we would lose some of that value.
SO take some time to enjoy some literary classics, and at the same time appreciate the fact that in your organization, you have collected data and information that needs to be preserved classically. There is a great deal of value there and learning that can be leveraged into the future.
I am getting ready to walk into the movie of Anna Karenina. I am a bit skeptical about how it can do the story justice but the sheer coincidence alone that this was one of my summer novels and it was released as a movie just as I finished it up was motivation enough to get me to the theater.