Call me old-fashioned or whatever, but I don't get this new surge of enthusiasm for the trilogy Fifty Shades of Grey. Has the world gone mad at last?
As a teenager, I am painfully aware of what is going on with my generation, and the madness that is Fifty Shades doesn't have mercy on us.
Suddenly, many girls seem to gush about how amazing or "hot" Christian Grey is, or how Ana is too lucky to land him, or how they would be her, as I sit by idly, watching them in despair.
Oh, gone are the days when we could enjoy literature!
I am not judging Fifty Shades because of its content, as I am a firm believer in Wilde's philosophy: "There is no moral or immoral book, only a good or badly written one."
I am judging it because of what it is. Everyone knows it is not an original idea, however, a revised version of a Twilight fanfiction posted online.
As an occasion fanfiction writer, I am not sure I am proud of E L James' achievement - revising a fanfiction and changing the characters' names doesn't make it original because the foundation of your characters is taken from some other published works.
Then again, it seems like Stephanie Meyer doesn't mind it that much.
Like with Twilight, girls seem to ignore the implication of women's submissiveness in the books and focus on the characters' physical aspects, without realising that they are endorsing an anti-feminist sentiment.
The main female characters in both series are portrayed as dependent on men; whatever independence or sense of self they had vanished the moment they felt they were in love.
Such portrayal makes a girl like me groan and moan in this day and age. Yet, people go on and on about how strong Bella or Ana is, while they are not.
Strong is what one would use to describe Elizabeth Bennet, Jane Eyre or Scarlett O'Hara. Indeed, gone are the days when female characters had their minds and lives - I am not even going to mention the far from realistic portrayal of a BDSM relationship in Fifty Shades.
Once, when I complained about Twilight to my teacher, she said perhaps it was okay because at least people read.
I understand her view, but from what I see, many who read books like Twilight and Fifty Shades - I am in no way grouping everyone, it is just that many do this - don't go on to read more books, but stop there.
The sole reason they read is not because they enjoy it, but because it's a new trend.
By reading books like these, would they get the pleasure of holding a book and enjoying every word in it? Would they understand why people read?
People don't read because it's a trend, or it makes them look smart, or because they are supposed to.
Reading is one of the greatest pleasures. It is when you let yourself be free and immersed in a world of pure imagination, where there seems to be infinite possibilities and solutions, where the adventures never stop when you close the book.
We don't have a shortage of good modern books.
There are John Green's, which would appeal to the romantic side of many teenage girls and are realistic and profound.
There is always The Perks of Being a Wallflower. Various others too, spawn from Harry Potter to Good Omens. There is no shortage of classic books either.
Why Fifty Shades and Twilight? This question I fear is one I will never be able to answer.
Walt Whitman said:
Oh me! Oh life! of the questions of these
Of the endless trains of the faithless, of the cities fill'd with the foolish,
The question, O me! so sad, recurring - What good amid these, O me, O life?"
It seems like my wit has left me dry.