Shared Perspectives: Essays by Great Writers

Course Leader(s)
Day of Week: Wednesday
Course Length: 5 weeks
Starting: 09/11/2024
Ending: 10/16/2024
Period of Day: Period 2 Zoom
Time: 11:30 - 1:00
Course Fee: $50

Course Description:

Essays are an opportunity to explore one’s thoughts and to share them for their potential interest to others. They occur in a wide variety of forms: self-reflection, narrative, events, beliefs, descriptions, proposals, humor, and others. We will be discussing essays from the Best American Essays of the Century, edited by Joyce Carol Oates. The collection includes essays by writers ranging from Vladimir Nabokov and James Baldwin to Susan Sontag, Joan Didion, Cynthia Ozick, Saul Bellow, Maya Angelou, and others, as time permits. We will look at essays on a variety of topics that I select and discuss the main theses, in what way writing style contributes to the quality of the essay, the themes’ current relevance, and other aspects of the essays.  Weekly preparation time should be two to three hours, depending on the essays.

Books and Other Resources:

Best American Essays of the Century, Joyce Carol Oates, ed., Mariner Books

Course Leader Bio(s)

Marvin Snider

I have a PhD in psychology and have practiced both as a clinician and an organizational consultant. I have led many courses on diverse topics at the Harvard Life Learning Program, including courses on International Hotspots, Innovators of Political Thought, Cults, and Elections. At LLAIC, I have led courses on George Washington, Lincoln, Benjamin Franklin, Teddy Roosevelt, Hamilton, Truman, Johnson, FDR, Nixon, JFK, Meir, Albright, Brandeis, and Einstein. These courses on presidents and other accomplished people are approached with emphasis on understanding their personality and what enabled him to achieve their accomplishments.