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If you have problems, please Contact Us. All too often, people fail to give the great books the attention they deserve. They might feel locked out of these masterpieces because they believe themselves unequipped to savor their richness. Or they might feel that great literature has only some antiquarian or museum value. As an introduction to the major texts of Western culture from antiquity to the present, this course empowers you to enter into these great works of the past.
A Gratifying and Enlightening Experience Taught by an extraordinary scholar and educator, this course is a gratifying experience that can widen your views on self and society in enduring ways. Arnold Weinstein of Brown University has been honored as Brown's Best Teacher in the Humanities and has studied and taught at major universities all over the world. His remarkable ability to make a writer's voice come alive makes this one of our most exciting literature courses.
And he has made a point of creating a wide-ranging, enriching experience. The course has been designed to exhibit not only the themes and techniques of great literature but also to expose both the power and limitations of several different analytic tools in assisting our understanding of these monuments of the human spirit, including:. These lectures with Professor Weinstein examine great works in the three forms of literary expression: drama, poetry, and narrative.
Theater itself is a profoundly social art form. It possessed a religious character for the Greeks and its staging of values and crises are still resonant today. The sequence of plays discussed thus illuminate for us the changing notions of "representative man," from Sophocles's king to Beckett's clowns.
You learn that theatrical literature makes visible the conflicts and wars of culture in ways other forms cannot manage, because theater is founded on the agon , the struggle between disparate subjectivities and voices. Notions of self, human relationship, and meaningful action are debated, forged, actualized, and undone before our very eyes. This enables a holistic and environmental picture of life that we do not have in our daily affairs. Its conventions of rhyme, meter, metaphor, and the like distinguish poetry unmistakably from the prose we use all the time.
It enables it to go to the heart of human existence with a purity and power akin to surgery. It is truly a privileged form of expression, a mode of discovery that bids to challenge and change the way we customarily do business. From Shakespeare's sonnets through the great poets of our own times, Dr. Weinstein demonstrates what a bristling human document the poem can be and how it offers a unique portrait of private psyche and public setting. More than any other art form, poetry captures the dance of the human mind. It displays for us the way meanings are made and makes us understand just how precious a resource language itself is in our lives.
Narrative is doubtless the most familiar form of literary expression, since everyone reads, or used to read, novels. The perspective of this section is long-range, with the lectures beginning with a medieval Arthurian romance and closing with Alice Walker's The Color Purple. The lectures reveal some astonishing common ground, including the emphasis on rites-of-passage; the fit or misfit between self and society; the creation of an identity; and the weight and presence of the past. You learn that narrative is especially constituted to convey the curve of time in human life; the central business of the novel is to tell the life story, enabling a possession of that life that is hardly imaginable any other way.
Though notions of "completeness" and coverage make little sense in a course such as this, the texts chosen are of undisputed literary and historical value and place particular emphasis on the English and American traditions. This course is meant to widen your view by using single texts as touchstones for other texts and other moments. Reading great literature makes it possible to grasp something of the march and struggles of history and to apprehend the contours of a second history—a history composed of books that signal to one another and that are revisited and replayed throughout the centuries.
These lectures show that works of art give us vital testimony about the actual cost of civilization—about the tensions between anarchy and order and between experience and language.
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Life Is Motion - Southeast Missouri State University
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Oppression and Liberty
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Psychological Character Analysis of Miss Emily in “A Rose for Emily” by Faulkner
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