Further information: Carol Rutz, Three Comic Academic Novels


Though generally light in tone, weekly assignments are lengthy, beginning with the first 118 pages of the Lodge novel for the first class. Thereafter, students can expect about 100 pages per week, supported by questions for discussion. All three books are in paperback, available new or used from online outlets, as well as new from Content Books.

·  Changing Places: $15.00 – $13.50 w/10% discount

·  Straight Man: $16.95 – $15.26 w/10% discount

·  Dear Committee Members: $14.95 – $13.46 w/10% discount

Tentative syllabus:

Week 1 – Discussion of the genre, background on David Lodge, plus the first big chunk of Changing Places, upto p. 118.

Week 2 – Changing Places, 119-236.

Week 3 – “Ending” of Changing Places. Russo background. Straight Man, up to p. 57, Prologue and Chapters 1-4.

Week 4 – Straight Man, Chapters 5-20, pp. 58-206.

Week 5 – Straight Man, Prologue to Part Two plus Chapters 21-29, pp. 208-299.

Week 6 – Straight Man, Chapters 30-Epilogue, pp. 300-391.

Week 7 – Dear Committee Members, up to p. 96. This novel consists exclusively of letters—mostly of recommendation—and makes for quick reading. Schumacher background.

Week 8 – Remainder of Dear Committee Members. What have we learned about life in academe or anything else?