Literature and Writing


Imagine Abraham Lincoln's Gettysburg Address as a poem. What's the difference between a speech and a poem? Is a poem a powerful piece of art if it lacks simile, analogy and metaphor? Explore the world of poetry with Tampa's Poet Laureate, James E. Tokley, Sr. Learn about his approach to the craft of poetry and his evolution as a poet.
Join in an interactive exploration of identity, race, gender and immigration as experienced by the characters in Americanah, the 2013 award-winning novel by Nigerian author Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie. We'll consider: when does an immigrant become Americanized? What are the racial and gender issues immigrants have to address to survive in America? Why do people leave the country of their birth to come to America? You'll need to read Americanah ($16) before the first meeting.
It's not enough to read: it's more important to read aloud where words live twice. In this exploration, classic narrative poems will be both read and recited with interesting introductions and author biographies. Similarly, the class will enjoy wonderful short stories with lively backgrounds. Above all, the focus will be on the art of presenting the narrative.

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Are you an enthusiastic reader? Do you enjoy vigorous discussions? Welcome to this 100% discussion course based on a trove of literature including plays and sonnets. Using the Shared Inquiry method of civil discourse, we'll explore a variety of the classics including Shakespeare, Chekhov, Eugene O'Neill, Moliere and more. Texts will be provided by the instructor when you register. Cost $19 to be paid at the first class.
Shakespeare perfected every genre, from history to fantasy, tragedy to comedy. In this course we examine The Bard's comedies - full of irony and dazzling wordplay, disguises and mistaken identities, yet never without darkness. ExploreAs You Like It and The Merchant of Venice in film for the full range of human experience, culminating in happy endings.
This course will allow you to learn more about a topic of great personal significance--you! You will listen to and read published and unpublished life stories; then you will begin work on writing your own. The sessions will focus on childhood, family history, relationships, children, work (volunteer or paid), and personal sorrows and victories. This popular course is for beginners interested in turning their memories into family heirlooms or even works of art! This class is limited in size, so register early.
Short stories, often overlooked as a major literary genre, play an important part in American literary history. Explore the art of the short story in four sessions each devoted to one story. Before the course begins, please read The Lottery by Shirley Jackson;The Celebrated Jumping Frog of Calaveras County by Mark Twain; Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge by Ambrose Bierce and The Story of an Hour by Kate Chopin. All are freely available online or in short story anthologies.
Margaret Atwood writes, "The page waits, pretending to be blank." Have you always wanted to write your story but haven't found the time or discovered how to follow where it leads? Stories hide: in the back of a closet, in the cracks on a coffee mug, in the creases of a catcher's mitt. They need excavation. Bring your own story to life, exploring the tools of structure, narration and reflection to build bridges between yourself, your reader and the world outside your door.
All families cope with conflict, either overt or hidden. How do three plays, set in different eras and the very different milieu of the U.S., England and India, each tackle the theme of family conflict? Join us to discuss and evaluate Sam Shepard's True West ($10.95, Samuel French), David Hare's adaptation of Behind the Beautiful Forevers($12.95 Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2014) and Oscar Wilde's An Ideal Husband(Dover Thrift edition - less than $1.) Please read True West before the first class.
Better than pretty good? Explore form and meaning in two groups of memoirs and novellas. Discover the expat writers in Paris: read Ernest Hemingway's A Moveable Feast; James Baldwin's Giovanni's Room; and Jean Rhys's Wide Sargasso Sea. Next, turn to war and and other terrors with Michael Herr's Dispatches; Joseph Conrad's The Secret Agent and Heinrich Boll's The Lost Honor of Katharina Blum. Read A Moveable Feast before the first class and join our lively discussion. Any edition of these texts will work.