American Autobiography

LIT4661 American Autobiography
4 Advanced Liberal Arts Credits
Autobiography, always popular, has reached new heights of acclaim in recent years - especially in the United States. Why do readers find it so attractive? Sensationalist, exhibitionist, self-serving, revelatory, probing: while it can be all of this and more, autobiography as a literary genre has its roots in a person's desire for expression and meaning. As its writers explain themselves to the world, they explain the world to themselves, imposing on it their views and causes. Autobiography can demonstrate how history is made in words, not found; how people make sense of their own lives. Reading a cross-section of such works written by authors living in what is now the United States compels us to question simplistic notions of what _America_ stands for, and to rediscover its promises and its meanings in its variety and conflict.

This is an upper-level liberal arts course. Readings range from Benjamin Franklin to the present.

Prerequisites: Any combination of 2 ILA (HSS, LTA, CSP, LVA, CVA)

  • Program: Undergraduate
  • Division: Arts and Humanities
  • Level: Advanced Liberal Arts 4600 Requirement (UGrad),Advanced Elective (UGrad),Advanced Liberal Arts (UGrad)
  • Course Number: LIT4661
  • Number of Credits: 4