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."


First class and Sappho

Welcome back! You can now download our Syllabus with recommended editions and schedule for discussion: Syllabus

For our first session of Brilliant Minds, Spring 2018, we'll be discussing poems and fragments of Sappho. I've ordered Anne Carson's wonderful edition, which offers the Greek text on facing pages. You can visually discern some of the linguistic patterning and poetic devices even without knowing the language.

Back in 2000, I translated selected poems and fragments (three of which were published by William Packard in The New York Quarterly). I recently found my old word processing files and converted them to create an eBook version in both PDF and EPUB formats. A complimentary PDF version is available here: Download Sappho_fragments_180203

(Both versions are available on the Lulu store: EPUB, PDF)

 


Scheduled Readings for Spring 2018

If you're planning on doing some advance reading, here is our upcoming schedule for Brilliant Minds, Spring 2018. Looking forward to seeing you all soon!

Feb 6 - Sappho, Poems
Feb 13 & 20 - Augustine, Confessions
Feb 27 - Murasaki, The Tale of Genji
Mar 6 - Shakespeare, Romeo and Juliet
Mar 13 - Burke, Reflections on the Revolution in France
Mar 20 - Huong, Spring Essence
Mar 27 & Apr 3 - Pushkin, Eugene Onegin
Apr 10 - Hurston, Their Eyes Were Watching God
Apr 17 - Bellow, The Adventures of Augie March
Apr 24 - Roy, The Ministry of Utmost Happiness


Spring 2018 Book List

Here's the list of upcoming books for Spring 2018!

  1. Sappho, Poems
  2. Augustine, Confessions
  3. Murasaki, The Tale of Genji
  4. Shakespeare, Romeo and Juliet
  5. Burke, Reflections on the Revolution in France
  6. Huong, Spring Essence
  7. Pushkin, Eugene Onegin
  8. Hurston, Their Eyes Were Watching God
  9. Bellow, The Adventures of Augie March
  10. Roy, The Ministry of Utmost Happiness

(editions to be announced)


Getting ready for Fall Brilliant Minds (already!)

Here is our Fall 2017 reading list and schedule with dates for discussion:

Homer, The Odyssey (9/12 & 19)
Selections: Books 1, 5–6, 9–12, 19, and 22–24

Geoffrey Chaucer, The Canterbury Tales (9/26 & 10/3)
Selections: General Prologue, The Knight's Tale, The Miller's Tale, The Wife of Bath's Tale, The Summoner's Tale, The Pardoner's Tale, The Nun's Priest's Tale

William Shakespeare, A Midsummer Night's Dream (10/10)

Jane Austen, Pride and Prejudice (10/17 & 24)

Walt Whitman, Leaves of Grass (10/31)

F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby (11/7)

Yasunari Kawabata, Snow Country (11/14)

Elizabeth Bishop, Poems (11/21)

Paul Beatty, The Sellout (11/28)


Links related to books we've discussed

The Blue Guitar

  • The Wallace  Stevens poem excerpts that we read from in class.
  • The 1937 Stevens poem as printed in Poetry.
  • The Picasso painting The Old Guitarist from the Art Institute of Chicago.
  • David Tannenbaum playing Michael Tippet's "The Blue Guitar".
  •  Of the reviews of Banville's book, I've found this one in The Telegraph closer to our discussion.

Nutshell

Alice Oswald


Summer is back to Tuesdays

Our summer class, LITR1-CE9054001, Literature for the 21st Century is back to Tuesdays:

Tues. 10-11.40 a.m., June 6-Aug. 1 (8 sessions). No class July 4

Registration

The reading selections are:

All That Man Is: A Novel, by David Szalay

Swing Time, by Zadie Smith

The Underground Railroad, by Colson Whitehead

Thus Bad Begins: A Novel, by Javier Marías

Falling Awake: Poems, by Alice Oswald

Nutshell: A Novel, by Ian McEwan

The Blue Guitar, by John Banville

The Argonauts, by Maggie Nelson