Harvard’s Jesse McCarthy on teaching, reframing the canon

Wednesday, April 17, 2019 - 16:20 in Psychology & Sociology

This article is part of a series introducing new faculty members. In the summer between his junior and senior years at Amherst College, Jesse McCarthy interned at Books for Boys, a literacy program run out of a children’s shelter in Hastings-on-Hudson, N.Y. “That summer marked me,” he said. “I discovered I enjoyed teaching and was good at it, and I was able to communicate that love of books and reading.” McCarthy is now completing his first year as part of the faculty of the English and African and African American Studies departments, an appointment he started a month after receiving his Ph.D. at Princeton. Q&A Jesse McCarthy GAZETTE:  How is the teaching going? McCARTHY:  This spring, I’m teaching a lecture course, “Introduction to Black Poetry,” which introduces students to a black poetic tradition that I trace from Phillis Wheatley and Jupiter Hammon up to the present, to poets like Morgan Parker and Terrance Hayes. The idea of...

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