Self Pulls a Switcheroo: Bates English Courses Replace Gracie’s Visit to the Doctor

Self was browsing the web — hubby deep into Phoenix-San Antonio playoff, but since self likes Steve Nash and Shaq, she’d rather not watch — when she decided to determine the identity of the professor at Bates who teaches her in a course called “Asian American Writers.”

And here is her name: L. Shankar.

And, in the course of self’s investigations, she discovered that the English Department at Bates has exceedingly interesting courses! Here are just a few examples:

    Monsters, Magicians, and Medievalism
    Arthurian Literature
    Asian American Women Writers
    Tolkien’s Middle Ages
    The Brontes
    Frankenstein’s Creatures
    Music and Metaphor: The Sounds in African American Literature
    African and Diasporic Ecological Literature
    Shakespeare: Race and Gender
    Dickens Revised
    The Literatures of Women of the African Diaspora

And here are the courses in the Department of Women and Gender Studies:

    The Politics of Pleasure and Desire: Women’s Independent and Third Cinema and Video from the African Diaspora
    Women and Russia
    African American Women’s History and Social Transformation
    Voice and Gender
    Blood, Genes, and American Culture
    The Decorated Body
    The Body, Liberation, and Medieval Mysticism
    Goddesses and Goddess Worship in India
    Performance, Race, and the Body
    Race and U.S. Women’s Movements

If self were 25 years younger and inured to the cold, she would enroll in Bates, just for the opportunity to take any or all of these courses!


  1. nevercuttingcorners said,

    April 26, 2008 at 7:55 am

    it’s so strange to see someone i don’t know from bates write about bates! and its courses, too! haha. as white as snow as bates was (and still is, i’m pretty sure), i did take a lot of great courses there. the politics of pleasure and desire being one. 🙂

  2. April 26, 2008 at 3:33 pm

    Were you one of the “minorities” there? Then being in a “white as snow” school must have felt surreal . . .

    So, what was the “Politics of Pleasure and Desire” like?

  3. Yosef said,

    April 26, 2008 at 4:21 pm

    What is “African and Diasporic Ecological Literature” all about?…(I Guess I’ve been out of America too long) I have no idea what half those courses refer to.
    ….Frankenstein’s Creatures????? Gimme a break!’

  4. April 26, 2008 at 4:31 pm

    Hi, Yosef,

    Here are some things I pulled from the on-line course description for “African and Diasporic Ecological Literature”:

    “Africa is now recognized as a continent of import in a most necessary global conversation about ecological change.”


    Students will “examine interpretations of human biodiversity that have contributed to the neglect of African and African diasporic artistic and philosophic perspectives on ecological issues.”

  5. Yosef said,

    April 26, 2008 at 6:12 pm

    I stand enlightened…..

  6. April 26, 2008 at 9:15 pm

    No, I’m sure that if I looked at courses offered by Tel Aviv University, I would be just as confused as you feel when looking at the courses I listed in this post.

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