By Kim Scroggins
The CCSU bookstore hosted another episode of Central Authors this past week where one of campus’s own writers was featured to discuss her new book.
Dr. Katherine Sugg of the English department took to the lectern at noon on Wednesday, ready to discuss the concepts of her latest work: Gender and Allegory in Transamerican Fiction and Performance.
Here, she uses inspiration from various other studies –whether they are literary or political – to try to better understand how allegory can be used to solve the issue of identity. These studies are based on works sourced throughout the United States, the Mediterranean and Latin America.
Though the title of the book may leave plenty of room for interpretation, Sugg focuses more on the feminist aspect in trans-American cultures.
The book itself isn’t a large one but it is a dense read; and from first glance, it is probably not a book meant to be read for leisure. From the list of sources she credited, it seems there are only a select few that she would consider using for her class lectures. One she mentioned often was “Almanac of the Dead” by Leslie Marmon Silko.
For most of the lecture, she read excerpts from a few early chapters then opened the floor for any comments or questions from the audience. Among those who attended was the English department Chair Dr. Gil Gigliotti, and other colleagues from the English department.
“Each chapter weaves together questions of gender and allegory,” she stated. Though, she describes the book as being strangely humorous, where one could almost catch a glimpse of the irony within certain the chapters. However, she added that, “you don’t catch the jokes until the second reading. Some don’t make it that far.”
“The process was dictated by the market,” she claimed about her experience in writing the book and decided to close the lecture with more of a warning for those possibly interested: “[the book] was hard to write and rather hard to read.”
Sugg, who is an assistant professor of English at CCSU, has also worked at Stony Brook University and San Francisco University.