Novels of Character Formation, Novels of Coming of Age
W 2017


We read novels of young persons growing up   These are novels of psychological and moral growth, from youth to adulthood, and in which character development is key.  We read, for example, of a writer’s life from hardscrabble childhood to success in Jack London’s Martin Eden, of a young girl growing up in the south after WWII in Carson McCuller's A Member of the Wedding.  In Never Let Me Go, Katsuo Ishiguro writes of a young woman’s remembrance of her life as a child in a society like Britain’s, but different. A boy grows to be an artist, or perhaps something else, in What's Bred in the Bone by Robertson Davies.  We read these and other novels, in which the young women and men find themselves maturing in a world of possibilities, of dangers and of wonder.    

Extra credit:  from which famous novel of character development and coming of age, but not part of this SDG, does this photo come?

Weekly Topics

Weeks 1 and 2: Never Let Me Go, Kazuo Ishiguro.   

Weeks 3 and 4: Rumble Fish, S. E. Hutton.   

Weeks 5 and 6: The Crossing, Cormac McCarthy.   Note, this novel is NOT like the blood and guts Cormac McCarthy films.  

Weeks 7 and 8: A Member of the Wedding, Carson McCullers.  

Weeks 9 and 10: Martin Eden, Jack London.   

Weeks 11 and 12: What’s Bread in the Bone, Robertson Davies.   

Weeks 13 and 14: The Adventures of Augie March, Saul Bellow