Instructor: Person MWF 9:05 AM- 10:00 AM
Four books and four films (made from those books) that reflect our fascination with wild places and the physical, mental, and imaginative challenges wild places present to individuals who go alone “into the wild.” We shall read Jon Krakauer’s Into the Wild and watch the film of the same name—an account of Chris McCandless’s decision to give up most of his possessions, cut all ties to his family, and venture into a wild section of Alaska. We shall read Cheryl Strayed’s Wild, an account of her solo thru-hike of the Pacific Coast Trail, and watch the film Wild starring Reese Witherspoon. We shall read Michael Punke’s The Revenant and watch the film featuring Academy Award winner Leonardo DiCaprio—based on the true story of mountain man Hugh Glass. Finally, we shall read Andy Weir’s science fiction novel, The Martian, and watch the film starring Matt Damon. Our primary goal in the course is to examine the interactions between individuals and wild environments and to track human responses to wildness both outside and inside the individual self. Course requirements: Brief reading quizzes, two out-of-class assignments.