| || |
English prof only wants to teach books by "serious heterosexual guys"
September 26, 2013 - Andrea Johnson
Some of my Facebook friends are seriously annoyed this week by David Gilmour, a modern literature professor at the University of Toronto's Victoria College, who refuses to teach books by female authors.
"What I teach is guys," Gilmour said in an interview with Random House, because he isn't passionate enough about books by women, like Canadian author Margaret Atwood, to want to teach them.
His favorite books are by "serious heterosexual guys" like Anton Chekhov and F. Scott Fitzgerald. He might make an exception to his "no girls" rule for author Virginia Woolf, but he thinks she's too complex for his students to understand. Anyone who wants to read women authors, he said, can take another class. The interview can be found at http://www.randomhouse.ca/hazlitt/blog/david-gilmour-building-strong-stomachs
Gilmour is apparently an author of some note, though I've never heard of anything he wrote, and is a former TV presenter. He also teaches specialized seminars rather than the survey courses that most college students are required to take and that should provide a sampling of many different authors.
Nothing he said bothers me overly, since I had English professors in college who were wildly passionate about Hemingway or Faulkner or Steinbeck. English majors also have their favorites. I freely admit that I was not passionate about the likes of Hemingway, Faulkner or Steinbeck. I also didn't much care for Margaret Atwood, whose "The Handmaid's Tale" gives me the willies, or Virginia Woolf, whose stream of consciousness approach made my head hurt. Instead, I took seminar courses on the Romantic Poets and Edith Wharton and Willa Cather and one particularly entertaining class on the pop schlock of the Victorian Era. Variety is the spice of life and I'm sure there's plenty of variety to be found in classes taught by other English professors at Victoria College.
The big question here is why there's such a tempest in a teacup because an English professor prefers to teach books only by "serious heterosexual guys."
Post a Comment
News, Blogs & Events Web