Nowhere does private and public space collapse as on a packed bus. Mass transit is one of the great ethical and practical innovations of modernity, but what happens when it is disrupted by violence? Is violence here an aberration, or a predictable consequence?
In this course, we will make use of literature, cinema, and news media to explore what happens when power (political power, the power of nature, the power of the insane) manifests itself as violence in these public/private spaces.
- “Speech Sounds” by Octavia Butler (short story)
- Lowboy by John Wray (novel)
- Speed by Graham Yost, dir. Jan de Bont (film)
- Murder on the Orient Express by Agatha Christie (novel)
- Falling Man by Don DeLillo (novel)
- “The Five-Forty-Eight” by John Cheever (short story)
- Leaving the Atocha Station by Ben Lerner (novel)
- Lord Jim by Joseph Conrad (novel)
- Fruitvale Station by Ryan Conger, dir. Ryan Conger (film)
- “Twilight of the Superheroes” by Deborah Eisenberg (short story)
- Hindenburg disaster (news archival footage)
- Man Hits Woman on F-Train, Triggers Massive Brawl (Youtube video c/o Complex Magazine)