In my last week of Multicultural Literature, I read Omeros Book One by Derek Walcott, Girl by Jamaica Kincaid, The Perforated Sheet by Salman Rushdie and lastly, Wedding at the Cross by Ngugi Wa Thiong’o. They were all fantastic reads however, I did find myself being drawn toward Wedding at the Cross the most. I found that this text held the theme of this week’s readings the most strongly: Global literature. A text that speaks to a multitude of people no matter their race, gender, ethnicity, or country. All the stories from this selection had the touch of this theme and that is what makes them so enjoyable and interesting to read.
Global literature is a subject that hits home for all as we all come from different places. Some, like in my text this week, come from multiple places. This can be shared all the same. Also, global literature does not have to been race, it can mean socially as well such as we see in Wedding at the Cross having a huge impact on this. There are hundreds of examples like this one to show this theme – one being Les Miserables. Miserables tells Valjean’s story of trying to change who and where he came from but always being followed by that part of him. The story always comes back around to remind our characters that he cannot truly get away from his origins. This would be one example one could incorporate in a high school classroom.
Looking at this theme from a teaching standpoint, I believe that it gets a little bit tougher than the other themes from this eight-week period. The theme of global literature wraps things up in class, yes, but at the same time it brings many examples in pop culture to light. Picking just one seems like a difficult job as I would want something that most of the students could relate to and follow. As I have said before, I always like to incorporate movies into learning. Examples of global identity in movies are everywhere such as Three Sisters by Chekhov. Besides showing movie examples, I think the first step in teaching global literature would be to simply open discussion. Letting the students talk about their opinions about the theme, starting group discussions and making sure they truly understand what they are studying is key.
Global literature can be an amazing journey through reading if you let yourself fall into it.