English R1A

Reading and Composition: Global Bookworm: Am I a Cosmopolitan Yet?

Section Semester Instructor Time Location Session Course Areas
1 Summer 2019 Catchings, Alex
TuWTh 9:30-12 305 Wheeler A

Book List

Adichie, Chimamanda Ngozi: The Thing Around Your Neck; Adiga, Aravind: White Tiger; Danticat, Edwidge: The Dew Breakers; Fun, Lu: Call to Arms; Kawabata, Yasunari: The Old Capital; Lispector, Clarice: The Complete Stories

Other Readings and Media

Irving, Washington:  "Rip Van Winkle"


This course investigates how books (and book selection) allow us to form individual conceptions of what is “global.” We will read texts that represent an array of perspectives on identity, national allegiance, and global travel, maintaining an eye toward how literary form allows—and perhaps sometimes even forecloses—readerly “empathy.” To guide our course, we will explore the ideas of thinkers who believe in Anthony Kwame Appiah’s conception of cosmopolitanism—the idea that we can live as “citizens of the world” and engage one another with a mindset of “universality plus difference.”  Much of our thinking and writing will consider the possibilities and limitations of this school of thought.

Alongside our reading and discussions, we will be developing your expository and argumentative writing skills. Assignments will include weekly written responses, two short essays (2, 5 pages), and a longer, 9-paged argumentative research essay. There will also be a peer review and in-class workshops.

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