Sycorax as subject & agent
Sara RichMay 1st, 2020
Our course, Honors 201 (Colonialism) at Coastal Carolina University, had four primary goals: 1) to understand broadly the avenues and effects of colonialism; 2) to learn how critical and creative thinking can work together in anti-colonial endeavors; 3) to analyze the intersections of colonialism and patriarchy, and 4) to creatively communicate the continued struggle against these forms of oppression. To achieve these ends, Sycorax was our means. In Shakespeare's The Tempest, Sycorax is the characterless character. Prospero calls her a witch and a hag; Caliban calls her his mother. Prospero tells us that she used black magic to imprison Ariel in a tree before Prospero freed him, only to enslave him again. But Sycorax never speaks for herself because she is dead before Act I begins. Her reputation, formed by Prospero the colonizer, not only precedes her, it supersedes her. In post-colonial literature, Sycorax has become a figurehead for Indigenous women, demonized and dismissed, if not altogether silenced. It was our task this semester to help give her her voice back. Students were enrolled in either Honors 201 (Great Themes: Perspectives in Humanities), Honors 202 (Great Themes: Perspectives in the Social Sciences), or Honors 203 (Great Themes: Global Perspectives).
A Tempest (Aimé Césaire)
Sara RichDecember 12th, 2018
Aimé Césaire’s drama A Tempest (1969), a post-colonial translation of William Shakespeare’s The Tempest, is presented by HTC Honors College students enrolled in Honors 201, 202, and 203 (Great Themes: Perspectives in Humanities, Perspectives in Social Sciences, and Global Perspectives, respectively). Students produce and perform in the production, directed by Sara Rich, assistant professor in the HTC Honors College and Center for Interdisciplinary Studies. The production is a culminating project for the courses, which share a theme of colonialism. This event was performed on December 12, 2018 in Johnson Theatre on the Coastal Carolina University campus.
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