Jessica S. Manuel

Jessica S. Manuel is a reader, writer, and college professor. Her work explores the intersections of contemporary theories and philosophies with classic and contemporary literature. She earned her B.A. in English with an emphasis in Critical Theory and a minor in Theological Studies from The Master's University. She went on to earn her M.A. in English (Literature) from San Francisco State University where she studied 19th-20th Century Literatures with a special studies emphasis in Critical Theory. After examining the intersections of psychoanalysis and contemporary literature, she wrote her thesis on Haruki Murakami's use of the unconscious in Hard-Boiled Wonderland and the End of the World. After earning her M.A., she continued her education at University of California, San Diego where she studied and earned certificates in teaching adult learners, literature, and online teaching and learning. She is currently pursuing her Ph.D. in Rhetorics, Communication, and Information Design at Clemson University. Jessica offers online adult literature courses and reading groups for life-long learners through Book Oblivion Academy and also teaches writing and literature courses at the college level.

Mark Edmundson

Mark Edmundson on Becoming the Author’s Advocate, His Attorney for Explication and Defense

“The kind of teaching I part company with, the kind that seems to me most destructive to the freedom of self-making, is the kind that simply applies a standing set of terms to every text that comes to hand. These forms of teaching are a little like bad translation. Every work, alas, is rewritten in …

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The Need for Empathy in Steven Pinker's Enlightenment Now

The Need for Empathy in Steven Pinker’s Enlightenment Now

A man, to be greatly good, must imagine intensely and comprehensively; he must put himself in the place of another and many others; the pains and pleasures of his species must become his own. The great instrument of moral good is the imagination.” ~Percy Bysshe Shelley, A Defence of Poetry and Other Essays Steven Pinker’s new …

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Haruki Murakami Love Quotes

The Best Haruki Murakami Love Quotes

“We are most alive when we’re in love.” ~John Updike Haruki Murakami is not known for writing romance novels, yet something about the way he describes the human condition continues to resonate with readers. He captures love in all its manifestations, ranging from complete and utter loneliness to desperate infatuation. Any Haruki Murakami love quote …

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Haruki Murakami’s Earliest Writing Motivations

“Human beings have an innate inner drive to be autonomous, self-determined, and connected to one another. And when that drive is liberated, people achieve more and live richer lives.” ~Daniel H. Pink, Drive: The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us Haruki Murakami wrote an introductory essay, The Birth of My Kitchen Table Fiction, when he …

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In the Midst of Winter by Isabel Allende

Find Love and Belonging in Isabel Allende’s In the Midst of Winter

“I never try to give a message in my books. It’s about living with characters long enough to hear their voices and let them tell me the story. Sometimes I would love to have a happy ending, and it doesn’t happen because the character or the story leads me in another direction.” ~Isabel Allende In …

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Exploring Truth and the Intellect With Friedrich Nietzsche

“Here the ways of men part: if you wish to strive for peace of soul and pleasure, then believe; if you wish to be a a devotee of truth, then inquire.” ~Friedrich Nietzsche, Letter to His Sister, 1865 Friedrich Nietzsche (1844-1900), the German philosopher and professor of philology, wrote the essay, “Truth and Lie in …

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