Welcome to Brilliant Minds

A companion site for courses by Peter Arcese on classics, contemporary literature, and the arts ... Here you will find items related to our readings and discussions ... Ideas, images, background information, suggested readings, bibliographies, and notes on related performances, all find a presence here ... Enjoy your reading and check back regularly for new posts!


Lit 21 Summer 2018

Ready to get started! Here is our reading schedule for the Summer:

June 5 Jesmyn Ward, Sing, Unburied, Sing

        New domesticity and the focus on family dynamics in fiction.

June 12 Naomi Alderman, The Power

       The role of speculative fiction in representations of gender.

June 19 Min Jin Lee, Pachinko

        Recasting the historical epic through Japanese Korean culture.

June 26 John Green, Turtles All the Way Down

        Utilizing genre fiction to directly engage the subject mental illness .

July 3 Gabriel Tallent, My Absolute Darling

        Redefining the stakes and boundaries of new culture wars.

July 10 Jeffrey Eugenides, Fresh Complaint

        Re-examining the short story in contemporary fiction in the absence of theme.

July 17 Ali Smith, Winter

        Allegory and the fantastic at the edges of the novel.

July 24 George Saunders, Lincoln in the Bardo

        The state of the "experimental novel" and traditional notions of the "in between."


Fall 2018 Reading List

Hello all and thanks for such an enjoyable and enriching semester. Many thanks for your generosity! Following is the reading list for Fall 2018. I will update with specific recommended editions and translations:

Euripides, Helen

Dante, Paradiso

Shakespeare, Much Ado About Nothing

George Eliot, Adam Bede

Sigmund Freud, Civilization and its Discontents

Jack Kerouac, On the Road 

Isabel Allende, The House of the Spirits

Toni Morrison, Love