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U85 IA 5306The Modern Mediterranean: Facts and Fictions3.0 Units
Description:The countries and cultures around the entire Mediterranean basin have provided, and have been the scene of, much of the world's recorded history. In the 20th century, however, writers set out to explore, either by actual travel or else in their imagination alone, many of its lesser known corners: forgotten imperial ruins in Tunisia; remote and semi-primitive mountain villages of Crete; dusty and disease ridden towns steeped in medieval customs in the Sahara; the secretive, aesthetically dazzling souks of Alexandria. In doing so, they often found many fascinating, if previously hidden and frequently disturbing places, peoples, behaviors. But sometimes, instead, they discovered mere symbolic fodder for an implied or sometimes even explicit critique of their own native lands and social mores. In this course, we shall consider examples of the former in works like Andre Gide's Immoralist, Nikos Kazantzakis' Zorba the Greek, Paul Bowles' The Sheltering Sky and Lawrence Durrell's Justine. As for the latter, our attention will turn to even more contemporary works, such as Derek Walcott's Omeros, which is partially based on the Homeric tale of Ulysses' wanderings around the Mediterranean, but which aims primarily at questioning the history of colonialism and cultural memory of his own Caribbean island of Saint Lucia. While students will pay attention to the stylistic features of these works, to understand better the role rhetoric plays in such fiction, they will also study closely the various important socio-political, economic, religious and philosophical concerns raised by their authors. Some excerpts of film adaptations of these works are also used. Primary readings should be mostly completed in advance of the course.
Instruction Type:Classroom instruction Grade Options:CPA Tuition:$2,205.00 Fees:
Course Type:HomeSame As:N/AFrequency:None / History


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