The American Novel Since 1945

Yale Course , Spring 2008 , Prof. Amy Hungerford

92 students enrolled

Overview

Introductions - Richard Wright, Black Boy - Flannery OConnor, Wise Blood - Vladimir Nabokov, Lolita - Guest Lecture by Andrew Goldstone - Jack Kerouac, On the Road - J. D. Salinger, Franny and Zooey - John Barth, Lost in the Funhouse - Thomas Pynchon, The Crying of Lot 49 - Toni Morrison, The Bluest Eye - Maxine Hong Kingston, The Woman Warrior - Marilynne Robinson, Housekeeping - Cormac McCarthy, Blood Meridian - Philip Roth, The Human Stain - Edward P. Jones, The Known World - Students Choice Novel: Jonathan Safran Foer, Everything is Illuminated

Lecture 23: Edward P. Jones, The Known World (cont.) I

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        Lecture Details

        In this second lecture on The Known World, Professor Hungerford addresses Edward P. Joness ambitious and ambivalent relation to literacy. Jones shows us the power of narrative to bring together the fragmentation of the world, but is at the same time deeply aware of the fragility of text, all of the ways it can be destroyed, misinterpreted, abused, or lost. The son of an illiterate mother, Jones-- who, it seems, composed and memorized large portions of The Known World before setting anything down in print—models a form of literary self-consciousness infused with the moral dilemmas of slavery and freedom that is unique among contemporary novels.

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