Other People's Words: Folklore and Literature
What happens when you collect and use other people's words? This class considers folklore and literature based on it, focusing on the theme of objects that come to life and threaten their makers or owners (including Russian fairy tales and Nikolai Gogol's stories, the Golem legend and Michael Chabon's Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay, and Ovid's and Shaw's Pygmalion). We read essays by Jacob Grimm, Sigmund Freud, Roman Jakobson, and others, to understand what folklore can mean and how the oral and the written can interact. Students collect living folklore from a group of their choosing. This course fulfills the second-level Writing and Rhetoric Requirement (Write-2) and emphasizes oral and multimedia presentation.