Reading in Santa Barbara: Past, Present, and Future

Wednesday, May 22, 2019
9:30 AM – 10:45 AM


Free Event

Join students in the upper division English 197 Spring Quarter 2019 class “Reading in Santa Barbara: Past, Present, and Future” as they present their final showcase that focuses on this year’s UCSB Read’s book The Best We Could Do by Thi Bui.  See below for the class description and stay tuned for details about this public humanities event.

Coffee, tea, and snacks will be served.

English 197, Reading in Santa Barbara: Past, Present, and Future
Instructor, Abigail Droge

How do we come to be studying literature in a UCSB classroom? What’s the difference between why we read at all and why we read in school? In this class, we will consider the historical interactions between reading communities, both inside and outside the university, in order to analyze present relationships between such communities, and imagine future reconfigurations. As a class, we will undertake a sustained collaborative research project in Special Collections: a deep engagement with the archival records of UCSB’s own academic history. In partnership with UCSB Reads, the main goal of the course will be to curate a public humanities event (such as an exhibit, a talk, or a performance) around this year’s book, Thi Bui’s illustrated memoir The Best We Could Do. The final showcase will be informed by our archival research and should in some way model or foster the relationships that students want to see between reading communities of different demographics, backgrounds, and ages. In this way, students will be better able to reflect on what it means, has meant, and might mean to be a reader at UCSB.