February 2016

  • Thu, 02/04/2016 - 4:00pm - 5:30pm

    This series will compare three fictional accounts of war widely taught in American high schools. It will illuminate how the depiction of war evolved from the romance-tinged realism of The Red Badge of Courage through the unsparing naturalism of All Quiet on the Western Front to the knowing irony of The Things They Carried. How are heroism, glory, honor, patriotism, and sacrifice portrayed in each? How did the image of the soldier change over the century between The Red Badge of Courage and The Things They Carried?

  • Thu, 02/11/2016 - 4:00pm - 5:30pm

    Hemingway may no longer be revered as he once was, but he remains among the most influential of twentieth-century American writers. His ideas about literary craft and its relation to experience became key elements in the artistic consensus that guided several generations of post-War writers, and his fiction became a model for countless literary artists, even for those who sought to rebel against everything Hemingway appeared to exemplify. In this seminar, we will try to rediscover the qualities that made him so important.

  • Thu, 02/18/2016 - 4:00pm - 5:30pm

    “I decline to accept the end of man,” wrote William Faulkner in his 1950 Nobel Prize Speech. “I believe man will not simply endure; he will prevail.” But what exactly are the ultimate ends of Faulkner’s fiction? What visions of human justice and human solidarity do Faulkner’s writings foresee, and what role does the fiction writer play in effecting such ends? How can teaching and reading Faulkner help us navigate our world now, and how also may we learn from Faulkner’s emphasis on the dead-ends and dead hands of the past?

  • Thu, 02/25/2016 - 4:00pm - 5:30pm

    Since its publication in 1970, The Bluest Eye has remained a literary classic, a staple taught in classrooms across the country. The first novel to powerfully depict what “that race thing feels like” from the perspective of a little black girl who longs for blue eyes during the racist, sexist climate of 1940s Ohio, the novel shattered many a silence. How did the bourgeoning black feminist consciousness of the 1970s set the stage for its publication?

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