Wednesday, January 27, 2016

American Fiction from 1950 to Present

Hi, Readers!

post modernism       After taking a brief hiatus from the world of blogging, I am now back and better than ever!  I never believed people when they said they were too busy to read, but now that I'm in college, I've experienced the terror of complete time management for the first time.  From classes to homework to basketball to extracurriculars, I barely have time to catch my breath.  As of 2016, (Happy belated New Year!) I am trying very hard to break the habit of monotonously binge-watching Netflix before bed and picking up a book instead - new year, new me.

       This semester, I have the pleasure of taking three literature courses at Tufts University - Environmental Justice and World Literature, Latin American Literature, and American Fiction from 1950 to Present.  Shoutout to all you English majors out there, because there sure is a lot of reading for homework.  As syllabus week is coming to a close, I just recently went to the bookstore to purchase all of my required textbooks.  I couldn't believe my eyes as I examined my American Fiction syllabus, for which I had to purchase fourteen books!  When I brought all of the novels to the register, the cashier took one look at the stack and said, "Wow, that's a lot of books there.  You must be smart."  In my head I thought to myself, Or maybe I'm just really dumb for taking such a difficult class.  Only time will tell.

       According to my professor, the novels that we will be reading over the next five months span from the most well-known post-modern literature to some extremely obscure pieces.  I, for one, have not heard of a single one of the titles.  Guess that shows how much I know about American Literature 1950 to Present.  However, I'm excited to learn about post-modernism and explore the work of some diverse authors.

       As I read my way through the American Fiction from 1950 to Present syllabus, I will be reviewing each book here on Book Savvy.  We read each novel in about a week and discuss it over the span of two or three classes, and I will then share my concluding thoughts here on my blog afterward.  Hopefully some of them will be worth recommending to you, but I will also be sure to give you a heads-up on which books are snooze fests.

Here is a list of the books I will be reading:

  1. The Subterraneans, by Jack Kerouac
  2. No-No Boy, by John Okada
  3. The Crying of Lot 49, by Thomas Pynchon
  4. Why Are We In Vietnam?, by Norman Mailer
  5. Play It As It Lays, by Joan Didion
  6. Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, by Hunter S. Thompson (not pictured)
  7. The Bell Jar, by Sylvia Plath
  8. Corregidora, by Gayl Jones
  9. Flight to Canada, by Ishmael Reed
  10. Speedboat, by Renata Adler
  11. The Shawl, by Cynthia Ozick
  12. Less Than Zero, by Brett Easton Ellis
  13. Girl With Curious Hair, by David Foster Wallace
  14. Consider the Lobster, by David Foster Wallace
First up... Kerouac!
To be completely honest, I am pretty intimidated looking at this list of novels.  It totals up to 3,030 pages of reading to be discussed in a mere 25 classes (yes, I did the math myself).  For comparison, not including the introductory first class, we will be discussing over 126 pages of literature in depth each class.  Plus, my class is practically all seniors who clearly know much more about post-modern literature than I do.  Boy, do I have my work cut out for me.

Well, wish me luck as I attend my second class on The Subterraneans tomorrow morning.  I can't wait to share my thoughts on the novel with you in my next post!

Happy reading!

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