All European Studies students must read the following two books:
1. Animal Farm by George Orwell (ISBN: 978-0-451526342)
3. A Constellation of Vital Phenomena: A Novel by Anthony Marra (ISBN: 978-0770436421)
We hope these discussion questions will help introduce some of the themes of the course and the ways we will approach literature.
One of the essential questions of the course is, “What is the cost of order and stability?” What is the cost of order for the society in each book? Do the costs to the individual differ from the costs to the society as a whole? How does the ruling group’s view of what can or must be sacrificed differ from that of the ruled?
Compare and contrast the role of women—both the individual female characters and the place of women in the society—in each story. Where do the individual characters and the expectations for women in general overlap? Where do they diverge?
For each book, what is the MOWAW (Meaning of the Work as a Whole)? What does the author want to have us understand or consider?
Consider the narrative form of each work. How does the chosen form fit or enhance the content? What is the author trying to accomplish with these choices? Is it effective?
Assessment: When class begins in August…
–An objective quiz (approx. 25-30 points) offers you the chance to confirm that you have met the baseline expectation of completing the reading
–An in-class essay will assess your ability to emulate the writing style of one our summer essayists.
–A Harkness discussion will ask you to relate your reading to essential questions of the course using specific textual support