Last time I mentioned a Word-to-text converter, I felt like I had to make a point that, despite its age, it worked just fine.
Oddly, I feel the need to make the same argument again.
Truth be told, outside of .doc files, you might find catdoc somewhat disappointing; like antiword, it too doesn’t handle .docx files. Spinning one through just caused segmentation faults.
catdoc comes with a counterpart for Excel files called xls2csv. It’s equally effective with straight .xls documents, but I didn’t try it with newer versions.
I will acknowledge that time has left catdoc (and probably xls2csv too) in the lurch, but again, I have to acknowledge … they work.