Dr. Seuss And Y(our) World

Course Number: 
Section Number(s) and Day/Times Taught: 
Section 111: TR 5:00-6:15 pm
Section Number(s) and Day/Times Taught: 
Section 183: MW 5:00-6:15 pm
Fall 2018
The Arts

The works of Dr. Seuss are frequently (and often incorrectly) read and discussed as simplistic, highly visual stories for entertaining children and helping them begin to develop print literacy. However, many of his books—especially the longer, more complex narratives and stories—address such timely and relevant themes as politics; race; class; religion; and ethics.  In this course, we will examine and discuss these longer works of Dr. Seuss (in addition to his early World War II-era political cartoons) in aesthetic, narrative, and interdisciplinary contexts through such starting points as art, literature, science, philosophy, anthropology, mythology, and history.  Students will engage in both classroom and online discussions, and extensive individual and group research and writing.


Don PresnellDr. Don Presnell holds MA degrees in English and Spanish from Appalachian State University. His doctoral dissertation—written in fulfillment of the Ed.D. degree in Educational Leadership in Appalachian State’s Reich College of Education—is titled “ ‘Visitor to all, native to none’: How Digital-native teacher education students use bricolage and multiple modalities to construct knowledge” (2012). For two years, he taught elementary Spanish (K-8) for two schools in the Watauga County school system. He is the co-author of A Critical History of Television’s The Twilight Zone, 1959-1964 (McFarland, 1998) and has taught multiple sections of college English, Spanish, and humanities courses, including Basic English; Expository Writing; Introduction to Literature; Literature-Based Research; Writing Through Rhetoric; Writing Through Perception; British Literature; American Literature; World Literature; Introduction to Film; Elementary Spanish; Teaching and Learning in the Digital Age; The Narrative Art of Comics (First Year Seminar); The Twilight Zone (First Year Seminar); and Doctor Who: TARDIS Travels in General Education (First Year Seminar). He has been nominated for both the Brantz Award for Outstanding Teaching in First Year Seminar (2012) and the Harvey R. Durham Outstanding Freshman Advocate Award (2014, 2017, 2018) at Appalachian State University. He is currently the Director of the Common Reading Program and a Lecturer with First Year Seminar. His interests include multimodality; literature; comics and graphic novels; film and television studies; English and Spanish; pedagogy and instructional design; educational leadership; and baseball.

Contact FYS

The First Year Seminar is part of the General Education Program located in Anne Belk Hall, Room 250.

Phone: 828-262-2028

Our mailing address:
First Year Seminar
ASU Box 32065
Appalachian State University
Boone, NC 28608

Director of First Year Seminar:
Rick Klima

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