le plus loin le plus serré

le plus loin le plus serré
mourning art

in memoriam

"yet I tell you, from the sad knowledge of my older experience, that to every one of you a day will most likely come when sunshine, hope, presents and pleasure will be worth nothing to you in comparison with the unattainable gift of your mother's kiss." (Christina Rossetti, "Speaking Likenesses," 1873)

Sunday, November 21, 2010

spring semester, planned!

I bit the bullet and slapped together my spring booklist/rough schedule for the adolescence class. This sounds much more haphazard than it really was; I've been musing for weeks now what to add, what to subtract, what to recycle, what to try new for the spring version of this course. I've read and read, I've made lists, I've informally polled my students. Finally, I realized I can't fiddle with the list forever - book orders were due three weeks ago - and so I just went ahead and put down the books that, for today anyway, seem most interesting/useful/engaging.

The list, in roughly the order in which we will tackle them:

The Breakfast Club
Freaks & Geeks
King Dork
Fancy White Trash by Marjetta Geerling
The Perks of Being a Wallflower
Cracked Up to Be by Courtney Summers
Huge (TV show)
Staying Fat for Sarah Byrnes by Chris Crutcher
Liar by Justine Larbalestier
King of the Screwups by K.L. Going
I was a Non-Blonde Cheerleader by Kieran Scott

along the way we'll read an introductory bit of queer theory, and an introductory bit of fat studies from Marilyn Wann.

It's a little trauma-heavy, but then so is the entire YA catalog. LIAR absolutely broke my mind, and I'm very keen to try it out on unsuspecting undergrads. The non-blonde cheerleader has the huge advantage of being set in Florida (a deliciously weird place), and is relatively trauma-free. It's a girl-centric book without being TOO annoying, and it - like King of the Screwups - turns the idea of "the outsider" on its head [sometimes literally, in non-blonde cheerleader].
Cracked Up to Be was pretty great, though it uses some of the same old cliches and tropes, but it does some interesting things as well, and is very dark. I think it'll be a nice trio with Speak and Perks of Being a Wallflower.

I'm excited about this semester.

Now, I just need to get my Myth & Folktale class organized, which - of course - is the real challenge.

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