We are ushering in autumn 2016 with a literature course taught by Dr. Thomas Bailey, former Western Michigan University Professor who has served as ombudsman, director of Environmental Studies, and chair of the Department of Special Education and Literacy Studies. With his wealth of knowledge and experience, Dr. Bailey will guide us on a literary journey through our “peninsulae”, analyzing modern works of poetry, fiction, and non-fiction written by Michiganders, and addressing issues related to Michigan … and beyond.
In this course we’ll be taking a look at poems and books about Michigan, and discuss current events relating to Flint, Lansing, the Kalamazoo Promise, etc. During the session we will write journal entries, have short in-class writing responses, and write thoughtful, personal essays about what we have read and discussed.
The Border, Immigration, & the Latino Experience in the U.S.
October 25 – November 22
Dr. Ann Miles, Sociology
This course will explore Latino immigration in the United States, including U.S. border policies since 9/11, Latinos in the media, & the inequalities of migration. We’ll read a case study of Ecuadorian families who emigrate to provide a future for their children, and about American retirees who flock to Ecuador to live the good life in retirement.
The Nadir of the Black Experience, Part II: 1800-1903
January 17 – February 16
Dr. Ben Wilson, History & Africana Studies
The general theme of this course will be the survival of a people in a hostile, western environment. We will discuss self definition in the protracted struggle from Gabriel Prosser to W.E.B. Dubois.Readings will include: Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl (Harriet Jacobs) and Beloved (Tony Morrison).
Women Writers in Contemporary Black Literature
February 28 – March 30
Dr. Mariam Konaté, Gender & Women’s Studies
This course focuses on the writings of Black women writers from Africa and the Diaspora. Analyzing selected works, we will engage in a number of critical endeavors:1) establishing the canon of African women writers; 2) critically exploring stereotypical images of women in African literature; 3) Examining a developing African female aesthetics; 4) Analyzing oral literature.