Fall 2017 HC 221H: Where I'm From. Who I am: Stories of Migration in World Literature

Fall Term, 2017-2018

Professor: Susanna Lim

4 credits

  • CRN 12772: Monday & Wednesday, 08:30 – 09:50 @ MAC 103
  • CRN 12764: Tuesday & Thursday, 08:30 – 09:50 @ MAC 111
  • CRN 12769: Tuesday & Thursday, 10:00 – 11:20 @ MAC 111

“Are you from South Korea?” This was the main question that Donald Trump, the 2016 Republican presidential nominee, asked Joseph Choe, a twenty-year-old Harvard University student, when the latter attempted to challenge what he felt was a misstatement by Trump regarding the United State’s and South Korea’s contributions to South Korean defense. Trump’s knee-jerk response/question to the Texas-born, Colorado-raised Korean-American speaks volumes about the main themes of this course: migration, identity, race, ethnicity, and their relationship to storytelling, language, and culture.

This course examines the significance of migration, immigration, exile, and displacement in the stories we tell about our lives and identities. Although the historical and political context of migration will be a part of our discussions, please note that this is not a contemporary political or historical course on U.S. immigration. Rather, we will look at migration as a universal human experience through the narrative mediums of literature and film, in American and world literature and culture.

Readings include The Odyssey (excerpt), stories from Genesis (Hebrew Bible), a novel by Toni Morrison (to be decided), Princess Bari, a novel about a North Korean refugee, and graphic novels (Chinese Born American; Ms. Marvel).