Humans have always told stories as they try to understand themselves and their world. Eventually these stories began to be written down, and some such texts have endured for centuries and spread far beyond their locus of origin. Their richness invites multiple forms of interpretation, and their depiction of the human condition has influenced artists, writers, statesman, film makers, and philosophers throughout the centuries. They are woven into a dense web of intertextuality that affects our lives even today.
World Texts and Interpretations equips students with critical reading, writing, and thinking skills by engaging with the interpretative richness of these major documents of human civilisation. As members of a larger community of interpretation, students will learn to identify the connections between various texts and the ways that conversations develop between thinkers throughout history. They will be exposed to different ways of reading and interpreting classic texts and encouraged to develop their own interpretations. Units are organized into two week segments, in which two seminal texts are explored and brought into conversation. This dialogic process enriches students’ experience and provides a model for constructing arguments about intertextuality. The course also prepares students to present their thought clearly and effectively by focusing on both written and oral forms of communication.