About Class

This course explores reading, writing, and rhetoric through readings concerned with the relationship between self and other in literature. In particular, we discuss aspects of identity such as disability, gender, race, age, and sexuality. We read various genres, including essays, short fiction, graphic novels/comics, journalism, video, and others. These texts vary in their approach, style, and difficulty. They address the complex relationship between self and other in society and offer students the opportunity to examine how different genres engage their subjects. Each reading and writing assignment is included with the intent of complementing students’ work in Self and Other in Literature, an English course, while supporting their growth as critical thinkers, close readers, and effective writers in the academic setting.

Here is some of the reading and writing we do:


Essay #1: “Where I’m From: George Ella Lyon, Sherman Alexie, and others write about origins”

Essay #2: “Close Reading Panels: Scott McCloud, Ms. Marvel, and Understanding Comics”

Essay #3: “Self & Other: Deafness, Disability, & Cece Bell’s El Deafo” 

Essay #4: “Powers and Possibilities”: Research Essays on Fandom, Adaptations as Interpretations, and the Embodied Differences that Put the Super in Superhero


Ms. Marvel: No Normal (Issues 1-5), G. Willow Wilson 

Soon I Will Be Invincible, Austin Grossman

El Deafo, Cece Bell