Just thought I'd share all the graphica goodness coming students' way here in the West Texas Town. This Summer I'm teaching YA Lit during the second Summer session.
I'm taking a cue from my colleague Keith Polette and "clustering" 10 graphic novels around 7 YA novels. The graphic novels include American Born Chinese; Deogratias: A Tale of Rwanda; Life Sucks (which I'm going to pair with Fat Vampire), Dawn Land, Bayou volumes 1 and 2; Yummy (which will be clustered with Monster); Refresh, Refresh (which will be clustered with Last Night I Sang to the Monster and other texts); Smile; and How I Made it to 18.
My Fall 2011 line-up looks like this: one section of English Laboratory, which will once again feature Ayers' To Teach graphic novel; one section of what was once called "Drama in the Classroom" but has, due partly to my efforts, been retooled as a "Multimodal and Hybrid Forms in ELA" course; and one section of Jewish American Literature in which I get to focus on the graphic novel.
Watchmen, The Tale of One Bad Rat, and The Absolute True Story of a Part-Time Indian are on tap for "Hybrid Forms."
It was tough to narrow down the reading list for Jewish American Literature. I finally told myself I can make assignments that will allow for students to flesh out areas we're not covering in the required reading. I hardly have any super hero stuff in there, for example, but I'll have suggested titles for additional graphic novel reviews and book reviews to extend our knowledge.
So, here's the list of titles that did make it. You'll see a clear emphasis on some "contemporary masters" in here: Make me a Woman, James Sturm's America, Unstable Molecules, Hereville, Need More Love, A.D.: New Orleans after the Deluge, Ghost World, the Quitter, Maus, In the Shadow of No Towers, Fagin the Jew, The Plot, and The Contract with God Trilogy.
That's mostly Sturm, Spiegelman, and Eisner, I know. Hard to apologize for that, though. Also, The Jewish Graphic Novel: Critical Approaches will be our key textbook, with outside readings from other texts and one assignment being reviewing another scholarly or pseudo-scholarly book dealing with judaica and comics.