When Charles Dickens published Bleak House in the early 1850’s, London was the world’s wealthiest and most powerful city. It was also among the most crowded, polluted, and poverty-stricken places on the planet, where rich and poor lived separate but intertwined lives very much next to one another. Bleak House, with its themes of disease, inheritance, and legal entanglement, offers ample evidence for the necessary – and often painful -- interdependence of urban life. Colum McCann’s 2009 novel, Let the Great World Spin, makes the same case for twentieth century New York City, with the World Trade Center and its history forming the novels towering central symbol. Both novels use complex narration and plotting to explore the social and institutional relations of a wide array of individuals over time. How the novels treat these relationships, what they seem to conclude, and how they differ as well as how they are similar, will be the subject of this five-week class.
Registration will open online on Monday, April 12, 2021 at 8 AM (AZ Time)
- Classes will be delivered online via the Zoom video conferencing platform. Course will be password protected and only available to enrolled students.
- All class sessions will be recorded and made available to enrolled students for a limited time to assist those who may not be able to attend the live class times.
- Enrolled students may withdraw from a course and receive a tuition refund if the request is received before the second class session. See our FAQ page here for more answers to general program questions.
- Charles Dickens, Bleak House
- Colum McCann, Let the Great World Spin