Self Cluster

For academic year 2022-2023. 

Get a Life: Stories of the Self

Who are you? Are you happy? How do you define a good life? How do you want to be remembered? When music, social media or memoir speak to you, what do you hear? What does home or belonging mean to you? The stories we hear and tell are crucial to how we define ourselves. Narratives reflect and reinforce notions of self. Questions of community and moral obligation can solidify or challenge our understanding of self. While we do not aim to establish rightness or wrongness in the art of developing one’s self, we ask students – and ourselves – to reflect on the intersections of self and society, the role of social justice, the pursuit of a life well-lived, and the ongoing process of creating one’s self through stories written, read, and heard. Through giving voice to variables such as race/ethnicity, social economic status, religion, gender, nationality, and sexual orientation, we explore how lived experiences shape the process of identity formation. Looking both inward and outward, we ask: Who are we? What do we owe one another? How do we get a life that is meaningful to us? How will we be remembered?