Yesterday I posted a list of 100 books the BBC thinks we should have read. They’re betting most of us only read 6% of what they’ve decided is worthy. The point of the book survey is to highlight how much of the BBC’s canon we’ve read by posting the list with things we’ve read in bold.
I’ve yet to meet anybody who’s taken the survey and scored that low; anyone interested enough in reading to do the meme has probably read at least a handful of what’s on the list. In fact, I think the only way to achieve a 6% score is to avoid reading anything at all once you’ve completed high school English – including popular works like The Hitch-Hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy and The Five People You Meet in Heaven.
But that doesn’t mean the list is particularly valid. And it rather makes me wonder: what makes the BBC the arbiter of the modern canon?