For Tuesday (10/31)

For Tuesday, let’s start talking about the Harlem Renaissance/New Negro movement.  All you have to do for class is watch the Duke Ellington video above.  (However, if you want to get a head start on our reading – – read and annotate (3 annotations) the Langston Hughes essay, “The Negro Artist and the Racial Mountain.”)

Also, nota bene: I’ve posted our “Waste Land” assignment – – due Thursday, November 9.

For Tuesday (10/24)

Yes, let us go then, back to Eliot’s “Waste Land,” like a patient etherized upon a table.  As you re-read the poem, think about the various motifs (zombies, time, wet/dry, polyglossia, etc.) that we located in “The Burial of the Dead.” Can you locate instances of these motifs in later sections of the poem?  How does the poem add to or develop these motifs?

For Thursday (9/7)

For Thursday, let’s talk about Charlotte Perkins Gilman’s short story, “The Yellow Wall Paper.”

Though the story seems very different – – in genre, form, and content – -from Adams and Du Boise, think about any similarities you might see among these texts.

Here’s one that I’m still trying to clarify:  Du Bois discusses the “unasked question” that informs and structures all conversations across the “color line” in America.  Could we say that this invisible reality “haunts” American speech and communication?  I.e. that in a racialized society and culture, the specter of race flits in and out of many, many interactions, conversations, and actions?  In fact, perhaps a la Du Bois, these conversations etc. are actual ghosts, veiling and deferring social reality.  Gilman’s short story appears to be about psychological (perhaps even supernatural) dysfunction.  However what if the story – – like Du Bois’s “unasked question” – – is really a way of talking about something by not talking about it?