Macalester Talks - Wang Ping Download .MP3
English Department Newsletter
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Those who imagine English classes as solely composed of readings of novels would be startled by some of the exciting outings and guest speakers enjoyed by Macalester English classes this fall.
Because of its location in a major metro area, Macalester can offer its students far more enrichment opportunities like these than can most small liberal arts colleges.
This fall Mac English class students have had the chance to hear several well-known writers read and speak and have attended plays, readings, and other events at venues ranging from the Guthrie Theater to the Mississippi River.
Memoirist Laura Flynn, who spoke to a creative writing class in October, said, “I really appreciated the sheer number of questions students had, and the interest they took in the writing process and craft of writing, rather than in just the subject matter. I was also touched that nearly all of them thanked me as they were leaving class.”
Class member Shasta Webb ’13 (Los Gatos, Calif.) had this to say of hearing Flynn: “If you only read a person’s memoir, that becomes your entire understanding of her. Having the opportunity to meet this published memoir writer was really an eye-opening and valuable experience for me.”
- Laura Flynn, author of the memoir Swallow the Ocean about growing up with a schizophrenic mother, spoke to Jon Lurie’s creative writing class.
- Charles Baxter ’69, novelist and author of many notable novels, including The Feast of Love and The Soul Thief, spoke to Jeff Shotts’s creative writing class in October.
- Sigrid Sutter, actor and founder of the Classical Actors Ensemble, will visit Nathan Hensley’s drama class and Theresa Krier’s Shakespeare class.
- Alex Lemon ’00, author of the memoir Happy, spoke in October. Listen to the reading.
- Members of Wang Ping’s creative writing classes and students from St. Paul’s Ramsey Junior High will give a joint reading at 7 p.m. November 19 in Macalester’s Smail Gallery.
- Native American poet Allison Hedge Coke will give a joint reading with Wang Ping’s creative writing students in the Native American section of the Minneapolis Institute of Arts at 2:30 p.m. on November 30.
- Both drama and Shakespeare class members will attend a Classical Actors Ensemble production of ’Tis Pity She’s a Whore—John Ford’s great Jacobean tragedy.
- When Per Petterson, author of the bestselling novel Out Stealing Horses, spoke and read at the Guthrie, Jeff Shotts’s creative writing students were there.
- Hensley’s literary and cultural theory students attended both a rehearsal and a stunning Walker Art Center production by performance artist Ralph Lemon.
- Students in Jon Lurie’s and Wang Ping’s creative writing classes explored the historical and environmental heritage of the Mississippi River by canoeing down its waters (cosponsored by the Civic Engagement Center)