With Good Reason

Post archive for ‘Literature’

Bible Babel
April 12th, 2014 - (0 Comments)

In her book Bible Babel: Making Sense of the Most Talked About Book of All Time, Kristin Swenson explains what the Bible is, where it comes from, and how it’s relevant today. Also featured: Edward Neukrug (Old Dominion University) has collected oral histories of colleagues and former patients of some of the great psychologists of […]

Mentored by John Grisham
March 22nd, 2014 - (4 Comments)

With seven unpublished novels wasting away on his hard drive, Tony Vanderwarker was astonished when world-renowned author John Grisham offered to take him under his wing and mentor Tony on the art of thriller writing. Plus: Novelist Carrie Brown (Hollins University) draws inspiration from her years as a small-town America journalist, and from the mysteries […]

Sheer Good Fortune: Celebrating Toni Morrison
February 22nd, 2014 - (0 Comments)

Nobel Laureate Toni Morrison was born Chloe Wofford in 1931. She was 39 when she published her first novel about a black girl’s painful coming of age in a white society. The Bluest Eye and many subsequent works have earned Morrison the highest accolades in literature and established her as one of America’s leading fiction […]

Brow Anxiety
February 15th, 2014 - (0 Comments)

During the 1910s and 1920s, the question of whether one was “highbrow” or “lowbrow” became a concern in the minds of modernist Americans. Brooks Hefner (James Madison University) says this “brow anxiety” dominated the career of Willard Huntington Wright, who fancied himself an intellectual aristocrat while secretly writing a series of wildly popular detective stories […]

Heroes of Medieval Literature
October 26th, 2013 - (0 Comments)

Enjoy a lively introduction to the great heroes of Medieval literature. Kat Tracy (Longwood University) reacquaints us with the popular characters—like Gawain, Robin Hood, and Richard the Lionheart—and the lesser-known heroes, like Hengist and Horsa and Havelok the Dane! Also featured: Dan Brown, the author of the wildly popular thriller The Da Vinci Code, has […]

Friend is a Verb
September 28th, 2013 - (0 Comments)

In the age of Facebook, “friend” is now a verb. Dylan Wittkower (Old Dominion University) says the concept of friendship has changed with the advent of social media, but sites like Facebook can facilitate communication and expand the ties between people. Also featured: Radical apocalyptic thinking is often directly related to terrorism. Frances Flannery (James […]

“You sound like you’re not from around here.”
September 21st, 2013 - (2 Comments)

Within seconds of hearing someone speak, we make judgments about that person and their background, just based on their accent. Linguistics professor Steven Weinberger (George Mason University) explains how and when we develop accents and how they affect our identity. Also featured: Geoffrey Chaucer’s 14th century writings may seem impenetrable, with strange pronunciation and incomprehensible […]

Behind Bars
August 31st, 2013 - (0 Comments)

Written in another time and in another country, the Russian classics—Tolstoy, Lermontov, and all the rest—are still relevant today.  Andrew Kaufman (University of Virginia) and his students are proving that by teaching masterpieces of Russian literature to incarcerated youth.  The readings prompt discussions: What makes for a “successful” life? How I can be true to […]

Auto Biography
August 3rd, 2013 - (0 Comments)

The lives of thirteen people are featured in a new book–but the real star is a 1957 Chevrolet Townsman wagon.  Auto Biography, tells the true story of the car and its many owners.  Author Earl Swift is a fellow at the Virginia Foundation for the Humanities.  Also featured: “Bath salts” used to conjure up an image of […]

Tomorrow City
July 27th, 2013 - (1 Comments)

In his new novel Tomorrow City, Kirk Kjeldsen (Virginia Commonwealth University) tells the story of an ex-con who is trying to reinvent himself in a new place. The backdrop for the story is Shanghai, a city that has perhaps reinvented itself more than any other city in history. Kjeldsen recently moved to Shanghai, a city […]