Summer 2019 - WL 303 D100
Global Culture and Its Discontents (4)
Class Number: 5873
Delivery Method: In Person
Explores the tendencies of globalization in the cultural realm, which while sparking cross-border communication, also tends to flatten identities into a coercive global norm. Focuses on writing in contexts of political oppression, digital communities, censorship, cultural displacement, terrorism and/or warfare. Breadth-Humanities.
the rhythm of the city : URBAN LITERATURE’S ECOLOGICAL DYNAMICS
This course addresses the violent displacements & conflicts of global modernity through urban culture. Focusing upon the rhythms of urban existence and the everyday spaces of contemporary world fiction, it explores the dynamics of the “world city” through the lenses of performance & ecology.
Following a brief investigation of city life in the New Wave cinemas of Japan, France, and the United States, our readings move from Teju Cole’s celebrated narrative of New York to Shroff’s stories of escape and discontent in modern Mumbai, Woolf’s modernist take on London, Toussaint’s exploration of a French couple cracking up in postmodern Shanghai, and José Eduardo Agualusa’s brilliant evocation of the war torn African capital, Luanda.
COURSE-LEVEL EDUCATIONAL GOALS:
Understanding Urban & Human Geography in relation to Literature.
Continuing comprehension of terms & concepts of cultural criticism.
Awareness of the urban scene as a literary domain.
Comprehension of literary and cultural performativity.
- Short Essay 20%
- Midterm Exam 20%
- Participation 15%
- Group Presentation 15%
- Term Paper 30%
Teju Cole. Open City. Random House.
Murzban Shroff. Breathless in Bombay (stories). St. Martin's Griffin.
J-P Toussaint. Running Away (novella) Dalkey
Virginia Woolf. Jacob’s Room Oxford Classics
J Eduardo Agualusa. A General History of Oblivion. Archipelago.
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