In this course, we will read and discuss four finely crafted and thought-provoking short stories by 20th century American writers who explore the tensions between conforming to social, cultural, or familial norms and expectations and rebelling against or rejecting them. These texts will give us the opportunity to explore the diversity of styles, voices, experiences, and perspectives that have shaped, and are continually reshaping, American fiction.
In the first class, we'll read and discuss John Updike’s story “A & P,” a tale of adolescent identity and rebellion, and Amy Tan’s “Two Kinds,” a tale of childhood rebellion against, and possible reconciliation with, a parent. In the second class session, we’ll read Kurt Vonnegut’s “Harrison Bergeron,” a science fiction story about rebellion in a futuristic dystopian society, and Alice Walker’s “Elethia,” a tale of rebellion in the context of the Civil Rights movement.
It will be the responsibility of class members to secure their own copies of these short stories, prior to class discussions. Due to both copyright and cost issues, Osher will not copy and distribute them. Class members, upon enrollment, will be sent an email that provides instructions on accessing, downloading, and printing these stories using the University’s electronic reserve system. Otherwise, these stories are available separately, or in collections, at public libraries, bookstores, or on amazon.com.
Instructor: Marilyn Edelstein is an Associate Professor of English at Santa Clara University, where she has been teaching since 1987. She also teaches in SCU's Women's and Gender Studies Program. Her teaching and scholarship focus on 20th and 21st century American literature, feminist theory, multicultural literature, and literature and ethics. She has been teaching Osher Lifelong Learning courses regularly since 2007 and is one of Osher’s most popular instructors.
Short Course, Other Dates: January 13, 20
Location: Sobrato Residence Hall Building A, Room B & C
Cost: 40.00 Location:
Sobrato Residence Hall, Sobrato Hall A
Room B & C