Humanities Moments

Humanities Moments

We’ve all had “humanities moments” — when our lives were made richer, more poignant, and meaningful because of the insights the humanities provide.

Literature and Its Worlds of Possibility

Contributed by Emily Coccia, the John W. Kluge Center at the Library of Congress
Adrienne Rich

Description

In middle school, Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird inspired Emily Coccia to imagine the possibilities of the law to bring communities closer to justice. In college, it was the world of critical theory—such as feminist and queer theory—however, that helped her understand the other paths available to those wishing to enact social change.

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Title

Literature and Its Worlds of Possibility

Subject

Coccia enlists the words of feminist theorist and poet Adrienne Rich to articulate the power of the humanities: “I came to believe a child’s belief, but also a poet’s … that language, writing, those pages of print could teach me how to live, could tell me what was possible.” Literature can open up worlds of possibility, encapsulating what the humanities can offer us.

Description

In middle school, Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird inspired Emily Coccia to imagine the possibilities of the law to bring communities closer to justice. In college, it was the world of critical theory—such as feminist and queer theory—however, that helped her understand the other paths available to those wishing to enact social change.

Contributor

Emily Coccia, the John W. Kluge Center at the Library of Congress

Identifier

literature-worlds-of-possibility

Collection

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