The world is a vibrant blend of people of all ethnicities, races, and faiths. Literature is one way that we can explore the human experience. For ultimately, no matter what we look like on the outside, or what country we are from, the color of our skin, or our socioeconomic status, we are human on the inside. The joys and sorrows of life touch each one of us. Opening our minds and hearts to hearing others’ experiences is a powerful way to expand our awareness and understanding of the world and its people around us.
In this course, we read two award-winning novels written in the first-person about young people trying to find their place in their communities. We will see how these high schoolers are perceived by those around them, how they are pre-judged and pre-labeled. We will step into their lives and see the colorful worlds they occupy and the basic humanity that they share with everyone else around them.
As we discuss the characters’ experiences, we will examine the idea of being a “minority” or being the “other” and why representation matters in literature and media. We will use these books as a way to learn about others’ cultures and faiths. We will also examine how a person’s appearance or background can shape others’ perceptions and treatment of the person.
Along with the novels, selected poetry and short fiction and nonfiction by diverse authors will be included.
Note: Mature issues such as attempted rape/sexual assault are addressed, but there are no explicit details.
NOTE: Registration deadline is August 26, 2019.