Twitter entries satirize works of literature

Deciphering William Shakespeare plays in school essays apparently was not enough for two university students who have written a book of Twitter entries that summarize and satirize great works of literature, Reuters reports. "Twitterature: The World’s Greatest Books Retold Through Twitter" is an irreverent, profane, and sometimes brilliant collection of 20 comments on the ideas and themes in 60-some classics. The "tweets" of Emmett Rensin and Alexander Aciman combine the knowledge of an English major with the snarky shorthand of a teenager’s text message. "It’s funny if you’ve read the books," said Rensin, who has read them at his tender age of 19. Rensin is a sophomore at the University of Chicago majoring in English and philosophy, and his collaborator and classmate Aciman is a comparative literature major from New York City. These are not their parents’ Cliff Notes. The goal is laughs and gasps, not a study aid for students trying to comprehend Milton’s "Paradise Lost," Franz Kafka’s "The Metamorphosis," or William Shakespeare’s plays. Take Dante’s "Inferno" — which the authors did in Twitter entries that are restricted to 140 characters or less: "I’m having a midlife crisis. Lost in the woods. Shoulda brought my iPhone." Of Sophocles’ "Oedipus the King," they said: "PARTY IN THEBES!!! Nobody cares I killed that old dude, plus this woman is all over me…"

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