Thursday, April 22, 2010

Final (optional) blog post due tonight; bring in some artifact of "conspicuous consumption"

At the end of class on Tuesday, I asked you to bring in a reference (maybe a news article or a picture) to something from current culture that represents the concept of "conspicuous consumption" addressed in class--that is, something that is designed primarily to show off the owner's wealth rather than to have any function. (One example: the "I am rich" app for iPhones that cost $1,000 and did absolutely nothing.) You don't have to hand anything in, but today in class we'll discuss what you found.

In addition to Paper 2, the final (optional) blog post and comments are due tonight.  For this post, you don't have to confine yourself to the texts we've read but can speculate about other things:
  •  If Edith Wharton were writing today, what would her work look like? What would she be writing about? Do we have an Edith Wharton writing now--someone who addresses the same issues?
  • A lot of "chick lit" authors such as Candace Bushnell have cited Edith Wharton as an inspiration.  Is Wharton the precursor of "chick lit"? 
  • What 19th-century American novel would you like to have read in this course that we didn't get a chance to read?
  • If you could adapt one of the books we've read into a movie, how would you do it? Whom would you cast as the leads, and who would you choose to direct it?  What changes would you have to make?

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