Category Archives: Uncategorized

Chesnutt, Slavery, Jim Crow, and Madness (Group 4)

The slides discuss Chesnutt’s complex relationship to Plantation Tales.  The tales offered him a respectable path into publication in prestigious magazines such as The Atlantic, but Chesnutt also subverted the typical racial messaging of the genre.  “The Doll,” unlike “Po’ Sandy” and “Dave’s Neckliss,” is not a Plantation Tale.  What do you make of the Barber’s powerful impulse to murder and the long account of his thoughts?  Does the story see black “madness” in the same way as Chesnutt’s plantation tales, an inevitable product of brutally racist system?  A different way?  Is there a passage that influenced your thinking on the matter?  As always, let us know your thoughts in a paragraph or two.

Chesnutt, Slavery, Jim Crow, and Madness (Group 3)

The slides discuss Chesnutt’s complex relationship to Plantation Tales.  The tales offered him a respectable path into publication in prestigious magazines such as The Atlantic, but Chesnutt also subverted the typical racial messaging of the genre.  “The Doll,” unlike “Po’ Sandy” and “Dave’s Neckliss,” is not a Plantation Tale.  What do you make of the Barber’s powerful impulse to murder and the long account of his thoughts?  Does the story see black “madness” in the same way as Chesnutt’s plantation tales, an inevitable product of brutally racist system?  A different way?  Is there a passage that influenced your thinking on the matter?  As always, let us know your thoughts in a paragraph or two.

Chesnutt, Slavery, Jim Crow, and Madness (Group 2)

The slides discuss Chesnutt’s complex relationship to Plantation Tales.  The tales offered him a respectable path into publication in prestigious magazines such as The Atlantic, but Chesnutt also subverted the typical racial messaging of the genre.  “The Doll,” unlike “Po’ Sandy” and “Dave’s Neckliss,” is not a Plantation Tale.  What do you make of the Barber’s powerful impulse to murder and the long account of his thoughts?  Does the story see black “madness” in the same way as Chesnutt’s plantation tales, an inevitable product of brutally racist system?  A different way?  Is there a passage that influenced your thinking on the matter?  As always, let us know your thoughts in a paragraph or two.

Chesnutt, Slavery, Jim Crow and Madness (Group 1)

The slides discuss Chesnutt’s complex relationship to Plantation Tales.  The tales offered him a respectable path into publication in prestigious magazines such as The Atlantic, but Chesnutt also subverted the typical racial messaging of the genre.  “The Doll,” unlike “Po’ Sandy” and “Dave’s Neckliss,” is not a Plantation Tale.  What do you make of the Barber’s powerful impulse to murder and the long account of his thoughts?  Does the story see black “madness” in the same way as Chesnutt’s plantation tales, an inevitable product of brutally racist system?  A different way?  Is there a passage that influenced your thinking on the matter?  As always, let us know your thoughts in a paragraph or two.

Dear Miss Lonelyhearts . . . (Group 4)

Write a fictional letter to Miss Lonelyhearts or a response to a letter that another member of your group has posted to our site. Make the letter (or the response) have some weight, some seriousness that reveals something about our moment in time, someone’s experience of contemporary burdens.  The letters in Miss Lonelyhearts, after all, are very personal, but also metaphysical, not always very articulate but definitely tragic both personally and socially.  

If others in your group have posted before you, feel free to respond to one of the earlier letter as Miss Lonelyhearts instead of writing a letter to him. If you prefer to write a letter instead, that will also work.

As always, these posts should be a paragraph or two.

Dear Miss Lonelyhearts . . . (Group 3)

Write a fictional letter to Miss Lonelyhearts or a response to a letter that another member of your group has posted to our site. Make the letter (or the response) have some weight, some seriousness that reveals something about our moment in time, someone’s experience of contemporary burdens.  The letters in Miss Lonelyhearts, after all, are very personal, but also metaphysical, not always very articulate but definitely tragic both personally and socially.  

If others in your group have posted before you, feel free to respond to one of the earlier letter as Miss Lonelyhearts instead of writing a letter to him. If you prefer to write a letter instead, that will also work.

As always, these posts should be a paragraph or two.

Dear Miss Lonelyhearts . . . (Group 2)

Write a fictional letter to Miss Lonelyhearts or a response to a letter that another member of your group has posted to our site. Make the letter have some weight, some seriousness that reveals something about our moment in time, someone’s experience of those burdens.  The letters in Miss Lonelyhearts, after all, are very personal, but also metaphysical, not always very articulate but definitely tragic both personally and socially.  

If others in your group have posted before you, feel free to respond to one of the earlier letter as Miss Lonelyhearts instead of writing a letter to him. If you prefer to write a letter instead, that will also work.

As always, these posts should be a paragraph or two.

Dear Miss Lonelyhearts . . . (Group 1)

Write a fictional letter to Miss Lonelyhearts or a response to a letter that another member of your group has posted to our site. Make the letter have some weight, some seriousness that reveals something about our moment in time, someone’s experience of those burdens.  The letters in Miss Lonelyhearts, after all, are very personal, but also metaphysical, not always very articulate but definitely tragic both personally and socially.  

If others in your group have posted before you, feel free to respond to one of the earlier letter as Miss Lonelyhearts instead of writing a letter to him. If you prefer to write a letter instead, that will also work.

As always, these posts should be a paragraph or two.

Vandover and the Mazatlan (Group 4)

In the slides, I brought up Vandover’s time at sea on Mazatlan, but there’s much, much more to say about that trip.  It’s the most dramatic action in the novel and is a pivot, sitting near the middle of it. Like the Imperial, the Mazatlan is, in part, a physical manifestation of Vandover’s consciousness, a chamber of his mind brought to vivid life in the world of the book.  Pick a paragraph or so where you learned something about Vandover’s frame of mind from his time on the ship. Include that brief passage from Vandover in your post and tell us in a paragraph what you found in it.  If people want to write about the same passage, that’s fine, but everyone who does that should offer new observations.

Vandover and the Mazatlan (Group 3)

In the slides, I brought up Vandover’s time at sea on Mazatlan, but there’s much, much more to say about that trip.  It’s the most dramatic action in the novel and is a pivot, sitting near the middle of it. Like the Imperial, the Mazatlan is, in part, a physical manifestation of Vandover’s consciousness, a chamber of his mind brought to vivid life in the world of the book.  Pick a paragraph or so where you learned something about Vandover’s frame of mind from his time on the ship. Include that brief passage from Vandover in your post and tell us in a paragraph what you found in it.  If people want to write about the same passage, that’s fine, but everyone who does that should offer new observations.