Profile of a FWIS: Adventures and Discoveries

FWIS 164, Ways of Walking in Literature and Culture

An Interview with Andy Klein, Instructor

How did you get interested in this particular topic?
First of all, I love to walk. Whether it's an exploratory city stroll in New York or an overnight trek in the wilderness, some of my best experiences have come while on the move. Then, while studying modern American poetry in graduate school, I found that some of my favorite poets--Wallace Stevens, A.R. Ammon, Frank O'Hara--all happened to share this love of walking and, further, drew connections between their walking habits and their writing. As I started researching the topic more seriously, I found even more than I expected--especially in unexpected places--and realized that I had to put together a course.

What, specifically, are you excited about teaching in your FWIS this semester?
I've put a lot of new things on the syllabus this semester that I'm really excited about. I think my favorite is probably this book by Joshua Edwards called Photographs Taken at One-Hour Intervals on a Walk from Galveston Island to the West Texas Town of Marfa. The photographs themselves are great, but what I find especially fascinating is the process itself. It opens up all sorts of possibilities for thinking about forms of narration, the difference between text and image, and the relationship between person and place. And it takes places right here in Texas.

What advice do you have for first-year students (about FWIS or their first semester in general)?
Prepare for class: do the reading, have something interesting to say about it, and don't be afraid to talk--even if it's only to say, "I don't understand." Also: try to leave campus and explore the city of Houston now and then. 

122.jpg

FWIS 122, Leaders and Leadership: What We Know, What We Believe

An Interview with John Cornwell, Instructor

What do you think is interesting/distinctive about this FWIS course?
Students spend time learning about leadership and reflecting on their own leadership abilities.

What, specifically, are you excited about teaching in your FWIS this semester?
It is very exciting to see students engage in self-discovery (about leadership) and reflection (the writing assignments)

What advice do you have for first-year students (about FWIS or their first semester in general)?
Explore, look for opportunities. The next 4 years is about expansion of possibilities and growth.