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(S) Exploring the World of Alice Munro

Alice Munro.
Alice Munro.

Alice Munro is widely regarded as one of the world's best living short-story writers. Her fans include Margaret Atwood and Jonathan Franzen, while some critics have compared her to  Chekhov.  And what is it exactly that makes her so special?  Munro is among the authors who have placed a particular region and its inhabitants on the map of world literature, thus immortalizing it: in her case, Southwestern Ontario, especially Huron County around London, Ontario, nowadays sometimes called “Munro Country.”  But she has also, what Daniel Menaker, who for years edited her at the New Yorker, calls "a slyly postmodern sensibility". She writes about the way people, especially women, narrate their own life stories, and how those stories evolve, shaped by omissions and fabrications, each version overlapping and conflicting with the next to shape reality.   Her female protagonists emphasise the corresponding  female themes: mother-daughter relationships, daughter-father relationships, sister-brother relationships; restrictive gender roles, gender-related professional problems, often also in artistic or writing contexts; problems of growing older and of ageing or love relationships and relationship problems, the wonder of and the wonderful about love, along with its failure and its transience.

In this seminar, I would like to deal specifically with Munro's approach to 'love,'  probing this topic more thouroughly in two of her most well-known short stories:       

"The Progress of Love" and "Lichen."

Course Requirements:  A good command of the English language is expected to participate in (lively) class discussions.  

Required literature: Alice Munro, The Progress of Love:  New York, Vintage International Edition, December 2000.

Die Grundlage der Veranstaltung basiert auf dem Ankündigungstext des Frühjahrs 2020. Aufgrund der bestehenden Zeitlimitierung (3 Nachmittage à 2 Stunden) besteht jedoch die Möglichkeit, nur eine "short story" intensiv diskutieren zu können. Grundlage der Diskussionen ist ein als PDF vorliegendes "study sheet".

Dozentin:    Dr. Heidi Podlasli-Labrenz

3 Termine
Dienstag, 22.09. + Mittwoch, 23.09. + Freitag, 25.09.2020

Zeit:        14:00 (s.t.) bis 15:30 Uhr

Entgelt:    25.- Euro

Veranstaltungsart:    Online-Seminarreihe