Throughout the 20th century western colonial empire has been retreating from its earlier domination over vast nonwestern territories. During this same period novelists white and black, western and nonwestern, have sought to make sense of colonial encounter. Drawing on two white British writers (Joseph Conrad and E. M. Forster) and two black Nigerian writers (Chinua Achebe and Buchi Emecheta), this course will explore the ways in which differently positioned writers represent colonial encounter—as it was administered, as it was felt on the receiving end.
Philip Weinstein, Professor of English at Swarthmore College and part-time resident in Aquinnah, will lead the discussions. He has taught these novels in his courses at Swarthmore and published on some of them as well. During the past decade, he has given lectures and led discussions on fictions of race, at different libraries on the island.
The course will take place from 4:00 to 5:30 on Thursday afternoons (with one exception) during fall 2011. Conceived as a program offered to participants all over the island, the lectures and discussions will be held at the following libraries:
Thursday, September 15th, Aquinnah Public Library: Conrad, Heart of Darkness (1899)
Thursday, November 3rd, Chilmark Free Public Library: Forster, A Passage to India (1924)
Wednesday, November 16th (7pm), Vineyard Haven Public Library: Achebe, Things Fall Apart (1966)
Thursday, December 15th, Oak Bluffs Public Library: Emecheta, The Joys of Motherhood (1979)