Author Archives: Stacy

June 28

What Stacy and Her Boys are Reading Now

Happy Summer, reader friends! In the six weeks since my semester ended I’ve done a bunch of running around – both literally (another 1⁄2 marathon and a trail race) and metaphorically (moving, quick work trip to Iowa City, teaching a Shakespeare class at a prison – more on that in a future blog post). But, […]

RIP Maya Angelou (1928-2014)

“When I look back, I am so impressed again with the life-giving power of literature. If I were a young person today, trying to gain a sense of myself in the world, I would do that again by reading, just as I did when I was young.” — Maya Angelou

April 09

Reader Empathy

We’re reading The Reluctant Fundamentalist in my World Literature class right now. Included in the brief Q&A at the back of our book is a comment from author Mohsin Hamid about why he writes: “I believe that the core skill of a novelist is empathy: the ability to imagine what someone else might feel.” After […]

March 24

Spring Break Reading

I’ve noted before how excited I get when I have a break from teaching and can tackle the stack of “fun” and/or “mindless” books underneath my coffee table. Spring Break is no exception; I love this week of relief between meetings and grading and comforting stressed-out seniors, and my rest and recovery usually includes some […]

March 03

What Stacy’s Reading Now: My Age of Anxiety by Scott Stossel

A footnote found early in My Age of Anxiety, Scott Stossel’s recent memoir/social history, notes something that I’ve always suspected: “…there are plausible evolutionary explanations for why both intelligence and imagination ten to be allied with anxiety” (18).  I have always hypothesized that anxiety is a “smart person” problem, and now I have evidence to […]

February 19

Endings

I realized last week something that I probably always knew – my favorite part of a book (or poem or story or movie) is the ending.  In two different courses with two wildly different texts in front of me (a collection of contemporary Chinese short stories and a poem from 1633), I gushed in front […]

February 04

“The birth of the reader must be at the cost of the death of the Author”: Or, Ron + Hermione 4-Ever

One more reason I love my job: I spent my January sitting around a conference table talking with students about book covers, fan fiction, and the role of the “Author” and “Reader” in contemporary culture. My “Culture of the Book” class is always a favorite to teach – it’s based on my own research interests […]