The second part has to do with the politics and sociology of the scholarly community itself. Authoritarian societies like Russia or China or Saudi Arabia are not going to be very good at social science, for the obvious reason that these governments cannot permit wide-ranging thought and debate and must constantly channel discourse in politically permissive directions. You might have first-class mathematicians or doctors or engineers in such a society, but you aren’t going to generate many (any?) world-class social scientists. Furthermore, the United States, Canada, and to some extent Britain, have highly competitive academic markets: instead having a few big institutions and a few key gatekeepers who can determine who gets appointed or promoted, the academic world in the United States is much more wide-open. There are more than two thousand four-year colleges and universities in the United States, which makes it largely impossible to impose a single intellectual orthodoxy on any field of study. This is even true in fields like economics, which has a larger core of accepted principles but still features intense debates between monetarists, Keynesians, neo-Keynesians, and assorted other tribes.
This essay offers a very basic introduction to feminist literary theory, and a compendium of Great Writers Inspire resources that can be approached from a feminist perspective. It provides suggestions for how material on the Great Writers Inspire site can be used as a starting point for exploration of or classroom discussion about feminist approaches to literature. Questions for reflection or discussion are highlighted in the text. Links in the text point to resources in the Great Writers Inspire site. The resources can also be found via the ' Feminist Approaches to Literature' start page . Further material can be found via our library and via the various authors and theme pages.
A Life of Adventure and Delight by Akhil Sharma : The title of Sharma’s new story collection is apparently ironic—“An apter phrase might be ‘bad luck and isolation,’” according to Kirkus Reviews . David Sedaris deems the stories “complex, funny enough to laugh out loud at but emotionally devastating,” and the Kirkus reviewer does ultimately concede that the stories exhibit “a psychological acuity that redeems their dark worldview.” Fans of Sharma’s Family Life may be interested in a story that seems to have been the seed of that novel. And if you’re interested in a sneak, the title story and “You are Happy?” (among others) were both published in The New Yorker . (Sonya)