Category Archives: Assignments

Image: Mechanical Bank (225)

mechanical bank n.d. Maker unknown. Image from artstor.org

(Note on terminology: After struggling with it awhile I opted to use the n-word once in this essay because it is literally part of the name of the object discussed. This single use of the term was placed in quotes to indicate that fact, as well as the fact that I would never use it otherwise.)

The characters and events described by Charles Chesnutt in The Marrow of Tradition give dramatic form to Black people’s experience of racist discrimination and violence during the Nadir of the Negro. Deprived of many civil rights, targeted by lynch mobs, and subjected to daily indignities, African Americans struggled to survive the Nadir as best they were able. 

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Notes on Narrative

I’m still learning how to teach online. The last lecture I don’t consider particularly effective and I think that from now on I’m going to post multiple, very short lectures instead of trying to adhere to a longer format which probably only works face to face in real time.

Ideally you’ll be learning the human geography of the Crusades, the dates of events, the names of the major figures, big picture stuff, etc. in addition to thinking about historiography as a form of narrative-making that shapes contemporary understanding of the present and the past.

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FA20 Readings Final

415

Ali, Tariq. The Book of Saladin. New York: Verso, 1999. Print. 

ISBN 9781781680032

Hoban, Russell. Riddley Walker, Expanded Edition. Bloomington: Indiana UP, 1998. Print. 

ISBN 9780253212344

James, C. L. R. The Black Jacobins: Toussaint L’Ouverture and the San Domingo Revolution. 2d Ed., Rev. ed. New York: Vintage, 1963. Print.

ISBN 9780679724674

303

Hoban, Russell. Riddley Walker, Expanded Edition. Bloomington: Indiana UP, 1998. Print. 

ISBN 9780253212344

James, C. L. R. The Black Jacobins: Toussaint L’Ouverture and the San Domingo Revolution. 2d Ed., Rev. ed. New York: Vintage, 1963. Print.

ISBN 9780679724674

Maalouf, Amin and Rothschild, Jon. The Crusades through Arab Eyes. New York: Schocken, 1985. Print.

ISBN 9780805208986

225

Chesnutt, Charles and Sundquist, Eric J. The Marrow of Tradition. New York: Penguin, 1993. Print.

ISBN 9780140186864

Hammett, Dashiell. Red Harvest. New York: Vintage, 1992. Print. 

ISBN 9780679722618

Le Guin, Ursula K. The Dispossessed: A Novel. New York: Perennial Classics, 2003. Print. 

ISBN 9780061054884

FA20: Haitian Revolution

WORKING

Haitian Revolution

Historiography

CLR James, The Black Jacobins

Laurent Dubois, Avengers of the New World

Gerald Horne, Confronting Blak Jacobins

Film

Gillo Pontecorvo, Burn!

Lydia Bailey (1947?)

Edward Halperin, White Zombie

doc. Egalitè for All

doc. Aristide and the Endless Revolution

Visual Arts

Kimathi Donkor, Caribbean Passion: Haiti 1804

Jacob Lawrence, The Life of Toussaint L’Ouverture

Black Dawn (film)

Drama

Aime Cesaire, The Tragedy of King Christophe

Orson Welles, Voodoo Macbeth

Eugene O’Neill, Emperor Jones

CLR James, Toussaint L’Ouverture: A Play in Three Acts

Novel

Alejo Carpentier, The Kingdom of This World

Madison Smart Bell, All Soul’s Rising (Haitian Trilogy)

Leonora Sansay, Secret History, or The Horrors of Santo Domingo

Nalo Hopkins, Midnight Robber

Arna Bontemps, Black Thunder

Syl Cheney-Coker, Sacred River: A Novel

Politics/Theory/Anthropology

Susan Buck-Morss, Hegel, Haiti, and Universal History

Peter Hallward, Damming the Flood

Alfred Métraux, Voodoo in Haiti

 

 

SPR 20

Hi Everybody,

I hope you’re doing well.

I’ve been thinking a lot about our situation and I’ve decided to give everyone an A for this course.

Starting today, I am no longer requiring you to do any assignments. You do not have to take KW2 or take the final exam or write the essay.

If, however, you would like to complete some or all of the remaining work for this course then please email me. I would be delighted to evaluate anything you submit.

Again: no one has to do any more work and everyone gets an A.

Take care of the people around you.

I hope to see you all again in the Fall.

Best Wishes,

Sean

House (310/485)

It’s interesting to compare the two marriage-related conversations between Lily Bart and Sim Rosedale. Note that Rosedale is Jewish, which in this period means he’s not really “white.”

(Who IS white? Take the test and find out: https://www.understandingrace.org/WhoisWhite ).

Lily’s distaste for Sim is certainly a product of the generalized anti-Semitism of her circle (and broader society). But there’s more to it than that. Consider the language employed by Wharton to characterize their marriage-related interactions. What metaphors and images does she use? Are there themes in play at these two moments that are reproduced elsewhere– for example when Lily frequents the Gormer circle or in the passages concerning her conflict with Bertha Dorset?

On Wednesday afternoon I’ll give you a prompt to consider relating to this topic.