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Long Reads

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In David Lodge's novel Changing Places, he introduces the reader to a game called Humiliation. It's pretty simple. A bunch of literature professors get together and admit, in turns, to having not read some indisputable classic of literature. The player who hasn't read more classics than his or her colleagues is the winner -- in other words, the least well-read literature professor takes the prize, so the game manages to pit a people's ego and careerism against their natural competitiveness. In the book, the guy who hasn't read Hamlet wins the game. But then he also gets fired...

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