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Monday, June 12, 2006

Post-Modern New Historcism

. . . . or something like that.

I spent most of today re-reading and studying Maya Angelou's I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings, the first of several volumes of her autobiography. This volume is her best known work and made quite a splash back when it was published in 1969; an age where African-American civil rights and visibility in mainstream America and media was one of the key social issues of the day. Never mind if you were a black woman - it was a double-whammy against you.

One of the chapters from Caged Bird is what I must apply the theory of New Historicism to following my introduction of the theory itself in my teaching demonstration on Thursday at the college. The assignment came from the human resources department. I'm not intimidated by the assignment but rather the expectation I know that exists in the world of academia to use terms and other language I normally would not be utilizing, even when doing, say, a dramaturgical assignment.

I read Angelou's biographies years ago so I only need to refresh my memory. (I forget a great deal of what I read anyway) I have re-acquainted myself with the literary theories of Culture Materialism, Feminism, and Psychoanalysis and much of the criticism that criticizes the referenced theories. It's all quite fascinating including refreshing myself on the meaning of post-modern literature, formalism and other terms I have long since forgotten. There's definitely no chance of getting bored here.

Tomorrow, I am spending my birthday on the beach and enjoying family. My cousin Ian is staying here while attending a conference in Baltimore during the day. He will part of the celebration tomorrow evening. I'm thinking of frying some chicken. I have a great recipe I want to try. I'll probably buy the crabs to bring home as Ian won't be getting here for dinner until 7 or so. That way, all will be more relaxed than rushing out for a dinner.

My mother just told that 48 years ago tonight, she ate watermelon and all through the night had to run back and forth to the bathroom thinking she must have eaten too much of it. She then realized in the morning that she was about to birth at 8:00 a.m. on June 13th and on the way to the hospital yelled to her mother-in-law who lived next day she was on the way to the hospital to give birth to what turned out to be me.

And the first words out of my mouth were "New Historicism Be Damned!"

Just kidding. I didn't say that until I was a month old.


Bruce said...

FYI Sent you an email asking to return it to see if AOL worked. I never received a reply, so I figure you're not receiving mine either. Sorry to post this here. I just wish I'd understand what's the deal with AOL and me, or perhaps many others too.

RebJam said...

Happy birthday! chicken and crab .. hmmm yum yum

Will McKinley said...

I thought I was the only one who forgets just about everything he reads.

Happy early birthday!

Anonymous said...

I thought a historcism was what you did when to get rid of an evil history.....