HSU Book of the Year

Parable of the Sower

Archive for April, 2008

Ideas for Teaching Parable: Sojourner Truth

April 15, 2008 By: admin Category: Uncategorized No Comments →

From Barbara Curiel, HSU English and Ethnic Studies:
Lauren, the protagonist, is strongly patterned on Sojourner Truth. They both travel and rescue people who are enslaved, literally and in other ways. The parallels between Lauren and Truth can be studied by introducing historical materials about Truth, including their mutual interest in utopian societies, cross-dressing, and carrying weapons.
June Jordan has a poem “The Song of Sojourner Truth,” that can be studied with the novel.

From Christine Accomando, Professor of English and Ethnic Studies at HSU, more resources on Sojourner Truth:

I think the best work on Truth is Stetson and David’s GLORYING IN TRIBULATION: THE LIFEWORK OF SOJOURNER TRUTH. HSU Library Info

Her oratory is really interesting but always transcribed by others (since
unlike Lauren, she is an activist/orator but not a writer), so it’s
important to be conscious about what versions of speeches you use.

Sweet Honey in the Rock recorded a version of Truth’s Battle Hymn, a song
she composed for the African American soldiers in the Civil War.

About the Author

April 15, 2008 By: admin Category: Reading 1 Comment →

Obituaries are one good source of information for authors once they are deceased. Parable author Octavia Butler died February 24, 2006 in Seattle, from injuries sustained in a fall. Here are some examples from among the many tributes published at the time of her death:

New York Times Obituary published on March 1, 2006:

Octavia Butler, Science Fiction Writer, Dies at 58

From a hometown paper, the Seattle Post-Intelligencer, on February 27, 2006:

Octavia Butler, 1947-2006: Sci-fi writer a gifted pioneer in white, male domain

She was recognized in the Washington Post:

Octavia Butler, Lonely Bright Star of the Sci-Fi Universe

HSU and CR Choose 2008-09 “Book of the Year”

April 14, 2008 By: admin Category: Events No Comments →

Humboldt State University and the College of the Redwoods have chosen Octavia Butler’s futuristic Parable of the Sower for common reading and discussion. Themes of dystopia/utopia, social and economic problems, climate change, and heroic journey combine in this rich novel. From Barnes & Noble:

“The time is 2025. The place is California, where small walled communities must protect themselves from hordes of desperate scavengers and roaming bands of ‘Paints,’ people addicted to a drug that activates an orgasmic desire to burn, rape and murder. When one small community is overrun, Lauren Olamina, an 18 year old black woman, sets off on foot, moving north along the dangerous coastal highways. She is a ‘sharer,’ one who suffers from a hereditary trait called ‘hyperempathy,’ which causes her to feel others’ pain as well as her own. Parable of the Sower is both a coming of age novel and a road novel, set in the near future, when the dying embers of our old civilization can either cool or be the catalyst for something new.”

From the Times-Standard, March 28, 2008 -

HSU and CR Pick “Book of the Year”

  • Events

    August 27 - ENGL 480 Book Club Class Begins.
    Join campus book lovers to read the HSU/CR choice for Book of the Year in a Book Club format.
  • CR/HSU Book of the Year Celebration

    November 6, 2008 Nalo Hopkinson Speaks in HSU Library Lobby, 7-9 PM