Self Versus State
Major Twentieth Century Writers
Professor Julia Evergreen Keefer
This course examines Major Twentieth Century Writers around the world, such as James Joyce, Virginia Woolf, Salman Rushdie, George Orwell, Don DeLillo, Jean-Paul Sartre, Aldous Huxley, Tariq Ali, Michael Frayn, Naguib Mahfouz, Orhan Pamuk et al, focusing on the theme of self versus state. Self includes all the imperfections of character, the madness and depression of mental illness, the pain and suffering of diseases and disabilities, the joys of creativity, individualism and free expression; state includes the greed and power of capitalist endeavor, and the sanctity of human rights, utopias, dystopias, socialist and communist governments, corporate and medical establishments-- any established group that acts as ONE. Is it hell or heaven when the state is supreme, or the individual? Why do most hells begin as Brave New Worlds, utopian heavens? Is the state's chief role to anaesthetize, control, exploit, comfort, nurture, guide, punish, reward and/or subjugate the individual self? What are the real responsibilities of the medical establishment regarding the birth, decay and death of the individual? How do recent developments in bioengineering, genetics, and global terrorism change the relationship of self to state? How do YOU feel about your corporation?
TO READ AND ANALYZE LITERATURE ON THE SELF VERSUS STATE
TO IMPROVE CRITICAL AND CREATIVE WRITING
1)Weekly attendance, 2) participation in class discussion
and listserv, 3) a creative webfolio consisting of a concurrent journal in
the voice of the designer baby of your choice, inspired by Brave New World,
as it travels through the literature, minimum two pages per week, and 4)oral
presentation and five page paper of close texual analysis, reading and writing
out a passage from one or two of the books and analyzing word for word in
terms of story, structure, language, characterization, descriptive style and
BRAVE NEW WORLD/ANTHEM, 1984/FURY, THE HUMAN STAIN, RED AZALEA, MAO II, COMIC POTENTIAL, NO EXIT, COPENHAGEN, MRS. DALLOWAY, ULYSSES, SATANIC VERSES, AKHENATEN, GOD DIES BY THE NILE, WILD THORNS, MY NAME IS RED
POETS' POT LUCK: We will read at least one poem every week related to self versus state theme--start collecting
January 24: INTRODUCTION TO WEB SITE AND CURRICULUM. READ BRAVE NEW WORLD AND ANTHEM.
January 31: DISCUSSION OF PAPERS ON BRAVE NEW WORLD. READ 1984 and FURY.
February 7:WHAT IS YOUR UTOPIA? DISCUSSION OF 1984 and FURY. READ THE HUMAN STAIN AND SEE THE MOVIE IF YOU CAN.
February 14: IN-CLASS WRITING ON THE DARK SIDE OF THE SELF. DISCUSS COURAGE AND CONFESSION, AND THE STULTIFYING CONFORMITY OF THE SMALL TOWN IN THE HUMAN STAIN. READ RED AZALEA.
February 21:IN-CLASS WRITING ON THE HEGEMONY OF THE STATE. VISIT PEKING REVOLUTIONARY OPERA SITE. READ MAO II.
February 28: LECTURE ON DELILLO. ROUGH DRAFT OF WEBFOLIO DUE. ORAL PRESENTATIONS-- BE PREPARED TO READ ALOUD.
March 6: FIRST DRAFT OF WEBFOLIOS DUE. LECTURE ON DRAMATIC
STRUCTURE AND CHARACTER CONFLICT. BRING NO EXIT TO CLASS TO ACT OUT.
READ COMIC POTENTIAL AND/OR PLAY BY TARIQ ALI.
March 13: ACT OUT COMIC POTENTIAL AND/OR PLAY BY TARIQ ALI. Lecture on humor, satire and fantasy. READ COPENHAGEN.
March 27: ACT OUT COPENHAGEN. READ MRS. DALLOWAY.
April 3: MRS. DALLOWAY. LECTURE ON WOOLF, VIEWING OF FILM OR THE HOURS. READ MOLLY BLOOM'S SOLILOQUY AND ANYTHING ELSE YOU WANT IN ULYSSES.
April 10: LECTURE ON JOYCE. FILM OF ULYSSES. SECOND DRAFT OF WEBFOLIOS DUE. READ GOD DIES BY THE NILE AND AKHENATEN.
April 17: LECTURE ON MAHFOUZ AND ARABIC LITERATURE. SEE EGYPTOLOGY FILM. ANCIENT EGYPT VIA ISLAMIC CAIRO. AKHENATEN. GOD DIES BY THE NILE. READ WILD THORNS AND THE STONE GARDEN.
April 24: LECTURE ON ROLE CRITICISM AND POLITICAL LITERATURE. WILD THORNS AND THE STONE GARDEN.
May 1: LECTURE ON ALTERNATIVE NARRATIVE STRATEGIES. MY NAME IS RED.
May 8: ORAL PRESENTATIONS OF WEBFOLIOS. SUBMIT HARD COPIES.