Professor Wai Chee Dimock continues her discussion of Light in August by showing how the kindness of strangers turns into malice in the cases of social reformer Joanna Burden and Reverend Hightower. Whereas that malice assumes comedic tones in the depiction of Joanna's death, it has more complex valences in the case of Reverend Hightower, who is both ethically delicate towards his neighbors and insensitive to his adulterous wife. Professor Dimock concludes by observing the kinship between the dual narratives of Lena Grove and Joe Christmas as, respectively, the undramatic and dramatic strands of the novel. Drawing on her reading from last lecture, she shows how both Joe and Lena's consciousness is marked by the gerund form and a passivity of agency that makes them receptacles for the dramatic actions of others.
Warning: This lecture contains graphic content and/or adult language that some viewers may find disturbing
00:00 - Chapter 1. Christianity and Southern Hospitality 04:30 - Chapter 2. The Neighbor as Political Theology 07:06 - Chapter 3. The Resentment of Southerners for Northern Abolitionists 10:52 - Chapter 4. Tragedy as Comedy in the Death of Joanna Burden 19:07 - Chapter 5. The Reverend Hightower and the Malice of Strangers 24:07 - Chapter 6. The Ethical Challenge of Hightower 33:56 - Chapter 7. The Switchability of Joe Christmas and Lena Grove 38:41 - Chapter 8. Kinship Between Lena Grove and Joe Christmas 42:44 - Chapter 9. The Passivity of Lena Grove and Joe Christmas
Complete course materials are available at the Open Yale Courses website:http://oyc.yale.edu
This course was recorded in Fall 2011.
This course examines major works by Hemingway, Fitzgerald, and Faulkner, exploring their interconnections on three analytic scales: the macro history of the United States and the world; the formal and stylistic innovations of modernism; and the small details of sensory input and psychic life.
Warning: Some of the lectures in this course contain graphic content and/or adult language that some users may find disturbing.
As one of the world's great universities, Yale traces its roots back to the early 1640s when colonial clergyman sought to establish a school in order to continue the tradition of European education within the Americas. Yale has now grown to educate over 11,000 students from over 100 countries on a 310-acre campus in New Haven, Connecticut. Within the school's 260 buildings are over 2,000 undergraduate programs in 65 departments taught by a distinguished faculty. As Academic Earth's first partner school, Yale has been a leader within the space of OpenCourseWare by consistently delivering on its esteemed mission to expand access to educational materials for all who wish to learn.