13 Oct 2010

The Graduate" - tough lessons in the school of life

Mrs. Robinson is a bit of a cultural legend and as I have never managed to see the film "The Graduate", I thought I would give the book a go and get to meet the famous lady. That was how I ended up reading "The Graduate" by Charles Webb.
The book and the drama all start at Mr. and Mrs. Braddock's party to celebrate the graduation of their pride and joy, their only son Benjamin. Only Benjamin does not want to take part in the party and be a good boy and polite to his parents friends. Inside him a psychological drama of epic proportions are taking place and he is fighting to figure out what to do with his life.
Devoid of a solution to this questions, he spends the the following weeks sleeping, drinking and embarking on an affair with his parents' friend Mrs. Robinson.
Needless to say, this is the road to even more mental struggles and Benjamin becomes even more pressured by his own mind, when he is forced into going on a date with Elaine Robinson, the teenager daugther of the Robinsons.

The book is quite short and I would have preferred it more detailed. I never really got to like Benjamin, found him a bit annoying actually and I didn't understand his emotional swings from confusion to quick, spontaneous decision. Also Mrs. Robinson and her daughter remained half-hidden to me, never really coming to life.
The story line is interesting though, it is very much about rebelling against conventional society and refusing to fit in. A great theme that is not explored deeply enough. However, it has a historical authencity. It was written in 1963 and I felt like this historical period of time was very apparent in the book and I really enjoyed that.

All in all a good read - and apparently there is a sequel called "Home School".

No comments:

Post a Comment