涼宮ハルヒの憂鬱: Week 6 Discussion

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Chapter 2 (3/4)

Suzumiya

Start Date: August 3rd
Previous Thread:Week 5
Next Thread: Week 7

Week 5 Reading: Chapter 2 (3/4)
Until p.96 (それはそれで見てみたいような気もする。)

Word lists - Learn the vocabulary for 涼宮ハルヒの憂鬱!

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Discussion Rules

  • Please use spoiler tags for major events in the current chapter(s) and any content in future chapters.
  • When asking for help, please mention the chapter and page number. Also mention what version of the book you are reading.
  • Don’t be afraid of asking questions, even if they seem embarassing at first. All of us are here to learn.
  • To you lurkers out there: Join the conversation, it’s fun! :durtle:

Read Aloud Sessions

Right now we have two teams reading at different times.
Team West - Saturdays @various times (see spreadsheet)
Team Japan - TBD

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Participants

Mark your participation status by voting in this poll.

  • I’m reading along
  • I’m still reading the book but I haven’t reached this part yet
  • I’m no longer reading the book
  • I’m skipping this book

0 voters

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Due to work I won’t be reading, so it’ll probably be sometime later next week before I’ll be fully caught up. :smiley:

You have such a good excuse!

I’ve just… Been not doing it. :+1:

At least week 5 starts way better than 4…hope I can get this week done before it’s over.

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GDI, this is really a hard read, and I don’t mean because of the Japanese.
Just going to say, if something else happens to 朝比奈, I’m dropping the book right there and then.

ETA:

次の日、朝比奈さんは学校を休んだ。:cry:

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So though the meaning of 机上の空論 and 砂上の楼閣 are pretty obvious, I decided to look up the words anyway, and I’m sharing the results for the lols because:
くうろん【空論】
現実ばなれしていて役に立たない議論や理論。「空理━」「机上の━」
ろうかく【楼閣】
階を重ねて高く造った建物。たかどの。「砂上の━」

Like
Well okay then

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I’m really struggling as well. For some reason I had in my head that someone had said the last section was gonna be the worst, but this week wasn’t any better.
I’m so hoping this is it now but I feel like this is just what the book is like.

Am also low key wondering if that is part of the reason we’ve already lost so many people (apart from the fact that it seems be quite a bit more difficult that most of our previous picks)

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Onoes, don’t you stop after you (and QuackingShoe) pulled me in. /o\ Well, admittedly, I haven’t been around (the forums as a whole—just as I got that Regular status, ironically) much the last two or three weeks (but it’s coincidental, I’ve been real-life-busy)…

I’m still somewhere on last week’s part, I think, but seeing you all disappointed with the contents… well, I can see why. Though I might not feel as offended as some, that doesn’t exactly make it very interesting either. :x

Not exactly related, but, so far (as of last week at least—sorry if this is the wrong thread, but I just didn’t feel like splitting the message :P), this all feels very shônenesque to me, yet I learnt that when it was translated to French (a total failure in terms of sales), it was marketed to young girls, at the time. Well, obviously, people will read whatever they want to read, but I found it a bit surprising. Maybe because Haruhi is supposed to be a strong heroine of sorts?

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Yeah, I keep wondering if it’s a book about supernatural stuff or stupid high school “comedy”, and right now it looks like the latter. But in a way I do not find fun at all.

Not sure, but this isn’t the lowest this club has ever seen anyway. We still aren’t in the red. On the other hand, I feel more than justified to start the next book when コンビニ人間 ends rather than wait for the end of this one.

Well, I’ll do my best, but the author isn’t making it easy so far.

Yeah, that last part is adding insult to injury as far as I am concerned. I can understand using sexual assault as a plot point, but here, it feels like it is played for laugh. Especially since, as キョン mentioned, ハルヒcould have just done that herself, since she was established to not mind that kind of stuff, or could have used some other “wacky” stratagem to get stuff last week and attention this week.

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Might end up being both. Even if supernatural stuff starts showing up, I don’t think the comedy bits will disappear. :thinking: Personally, I’m not sure what I’m hoping for, but I guess I hope it doesn’t get into “bad sci-fi” territory.

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I’ve read this week’s part

So, there’s probably not much of a point in just saying stuff about the parts I think most of us didn’t like since everyone else has talked about it already, so I’ll mention some other stuff. First, the way she’s been acting these last few weeks, it kind of feels like Haruhi almost is some sort of antagonist at the moment, since most of the stuff she’s done is bad for the other characters. I wonder if that’s intentional or not :thinking: Other than that, I’m also still not sure if the whole thing with Haruhi replying to Kyon’s thoughts is that there’s something up with Haruhi or if it’s just Kyon’s narration being weird :thinking:

Does that mean we’ll start voting for the next book soon-ish then? (since the voting usually seems to be done at least a couple of weeks before the current book is finished, which I think would be sometime during the next few weeks for コンビニ人間 )

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Other than that, I’m also still not sure if the whole thing with Haruhi replying to Kyon’s thoughts is that there’s something up with Haruhi or if it’s just Kyon’s narration being weird

I guess it’s just how the author chose to do it. I checked the English version, and all those thoughts were actually written as dialogue.

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As far as I’ve read, for me Haruhi is just an insufferable character that thinks she can go bossing around everyone as much as she wants, and she somehow is right. I could still find something interesting about her if she ever showed another side of her personality, but for now it seems she’s just like a Möbius strip… I wouldn’t like her even as an antagonist.

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To be fair, I mostly agree. I never said she seemed like a good one, just that most of the stuff she does is kind of(or, well, maybe more than kind of) meant to the rest of the cast

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Haruhi is really hard for me to like so far as a character. I haven’t read this week’s section yet but I have to imagine there’s something coming. Hopefully sooner rather than later. At the same time, I really doubt the “humor” will change. :expressionless:

I’m trying to imagine what I would have thought of this reading it 15 years ago.

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Done with this week’s reading.

It seems it won’t stop. Maybe since we are still reading the same chapter? I’m really hoping this is a chapter 2 thing or something and then it stops but I don’t know anymore. And I don’t even feel like there was anything else to the plot?
The only thing that is keeping me interested atm is the possibility that they could get an email about something weird.

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The only thing that keeps me going is that there are only 4 pages left on this chapter. How bad can things get in 4 pages? (I hope I didn’t jinx it)

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Thanks for pointing that out. I took the liberty of finishing the chapter, since it was almost over anyway.

Nothing bad happens in those 4 pages, btw.

I keep having some trouble with fully understanding the details and nuances, but I’m very happy with my half understanding of everything.

Somehow I’m not too bothered. :sweat:

I think what’s most difficult for me is the set phrases and metaphers, I keep having to look those up every time.

What’s hard for you guys, if anything? (apart from the subject matter, that is)

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Overall I’m not too worried about understanding everything as long as I follow what’s happening. There are times when I can’t be bothered to stop to read more closely.

I’m sure there’s a ton of nuance and references I’m missing. I remember someone mentioned one or two things early on being references to anime/manga that I didn’t pick up on at all. It’s hard when you’re either not familiar with the material being referenced in the first place or not familiar enough with it in Japanese to pick up on it.

I also don’t really understand some of the colloquial language the main character uses in his narration as well as I’d like to but sometimes it just feels like a whole bunch of words that don’t really add much meaning anyway. :sweat_smile: I’m more used to reading regular prose and dialogue than whatever his style of speaking/thinking is.

The longer, more complicated sentences can take me a few readings too but maybe they’ve been good practice because they seem to be easier for me to follow than they did at the beginning.

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As usual, I’m cursed with my “must. parse. everything.” mentality; I do look up the set phrases as you do, given my horrendous level of vocab, and I’m also sometimes puzzled by the slangy speech as brrricane is. I also just break down every sentence in my head until the grammar is clear, I know what every particle, every conjugation does, but admittedly being my only strong suit it’s not too much of a burden. So far I think I got most of it, at least grammar-wise. :thinking:

To be honest, I don’t think I’ve spotted any obscure nuance or reference in the last few parts, as it’s been mostly straightforward if colloquial dialogues—but I might very well have missed some things.

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Finally done with this part, just in time, so I can start the next one with the rest of you. /o\

Grammar-wise, I think the only things I noticed were:

  • ビラ配りを途中で邪魔された怒りもさることながら[…]. It’s a set expression but I guess it can be more or less decomposed into も “also” + さる “such” + こと “thing” + ながら “also”, where N+ながら has an inclusive meaning similar to も—not sure that’s still a thing in modern Japanese, though…
  • わがSOS団の名を知らしめようと思って作ったチラシ; Jmdict has a separate entry for it, but it’s really just the old causative of しる, formed with +しめる (old しむ). Thought I’d mention it lest some people should overlook it.

Otherwise, interpretation-wise:

  • I’m not sure what 猫型ロボットのように is supposed to be, in 猫ねこ型ロボットのように得意満面にハルヒが手にしているのは最初黒い布切れに見えた。I mean, yes I can interpret it literally but I feel like I’m missing something…
  • And あなたの魂に安らぎあれ seemed a bit idiosyncratic, so I decided to google the whole thing and found only some obscure SF novel… Does anyone know if the phrase is somehow fixed/common?

Well, I think the narrator has reclaimed first place in my personal ranking of most detestable characters of this novel—and god knows it’s hotly contested!

Rationale

To begin with, I can tolerate some pretentious fauxlosophical monologue, but please give me a character with more intellectual and emotional depth than a sole (or pick your favourite flatfish), please, author-san.

Haruhi, to me, so far, feels more like the shônen lumpen trope representative… she is so alienated in her absence of perception of the social order that she thinks herself smart by abusing others and the (micro-)society that surrounds her, alternately by bullying them (previous part) and trying to allure them (this part). Yet, as the narrator remarks, she is incapable of realising how others are just profiting off her actions just the same, e.g., through her wilful submission to the tasteless and base shônen trope of the bunny girl. In doing so, she inevitably drags down the rest of her peers, embodied by Asahina, and thus actively sabotages their struggle towards emancipation… Kyon, on the other hand, was the cryptoprofiteer all along—at the end of the day, he always coldly and rationally chooses to side with his own selfish interests, as part of the profiteering class, along with the likes of Taniguchi (and though he tries to paint himself as somehow better). In that sense, I conclude that he is worse. :tipping_hand_woman:

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