World Literatures in English
  A note on the pedagogy

Q: Is it possible to teach World Literatures in English?
A: No, unless there is a focus in theme.  "No" because "World Literatures in English" include so many regions and nations and cultures, and the "Yes" is given under the condition that some proper themes get chosen to allow the teacher to set up some manageable contexts.

Q: Why are you teaching "South-Asian Literature" (or literature of Indian Subcontinent)when you have not even been to any place in this area, nor do you know any of their languages?
A: No, I am not teaching Indian, or Pakistani, Sri Lankan, literature, and definitely not in the way a native-born academic would teach it.  I am focusing on the literature written by the South Asian diaspora (see definition of Diaspora). 

Q: But are you sure your interpretation of their cultures (Indian, or Indian diasporic) is correct? 
A: No, I cannot be 100% sure, and that is why I need to be careful in learning and doing research about their cultures. 

On the other hand, what is a proper or correct interpretation but an interpretation given and accepted in a given historical/social context?  At the same time I try to understand the other cultures, I am interpreting the texts and culture from a Taiwanese perspective.
To borrow Hans-Georg Gadamer's terms, my interpretation is inevitably and actively a fusion of horizons.


  for Discussion & Group Report  and possible texts to choose:

(to be updated as the class develops)


Group Report I: Cultural Identity & Representation of South Asian Women
Feature Films: In Custody, Masala, Mississippe Masala, My Beautiful Laundrette, Fire , Namesake, Heaven on Earh
Documentaries:  (more. . .)
Literature: Passage to India, Meatless Days, Reading Lolita in Tehran, Kabul Beauty School, short stories by Rushdie & Narayan. 

Group Report II:  West and South Africa
Feature Films: In my Country,   Soweto Green, Cry, my Beloved Country
Documentaries:  Long Night's Journey Into Day (on the Truth and Reconciliation Commission.)

Literature: the novels whose excerpt we read in class, A Long Way Gone, Beast of No Nation.

Group Report III: Caribbean Disapora and Survival
Feature Films: Rude, Soul Survivor, My Mother's Place, The Harder They Come.  
Documentaries: Caribbean Poetry
Chinese diaspora: Double Happiness, Mom, Mona and Me, 《浮生》 Floating Life , 《愛在他鄉的季節》, 《三個女人的故事》, Happy Together, etc. 
Literature: A lot!  Please see me.