Journey to the West in Wisconsin (2015-2016)
Journey to the West in Wisconsin connected teachers and students throughout the state in the study of Wu Cheng'en's Journey to the West (trans. Arthur Waley). Also known as Monkey, this sixteenth-century Chinese novel tells the true story of a Tang Dynasty monk, Xuanzang, who travels to India in search of sacred texts. Drawing from Xuanzang's own account of the pilgrimage, as well as Chinese folk tales and mythology, Journey to the West transports readers into a world of comedy, adventure and spiritual enlightenment. As they read the novel, students and educators will engage with the teachings of Taoist and Buddhist philosophy, tour the landscapes of the Silk Road, and learn about the shenmo genre. Participants also had the opportunity to read the novel alongside contemporary graphic and dramatic adaptations, including Gene Luen Yang's American Born Chinese and Mary Zimmerman's Journey to the West.
Teachers participating in the program attended two educator colloquia on September 21 and February 18, featuring talks by campus experts, workshopping activities and discussions, and cultural and curricular presentations. Our participating educators and students joined UW-Madison faculty, graduate and undergraduate students, Center staff and members of the public for the Great World Texts in Wisconsin's Annual Student Conference on Wednesday, April 20, 2016. Click here for the conference program.
Teaching Resources: click here for the 2015-2016 "Teaching Journey to the West in Wisconsin" guide and supporting materials.
Journey to the West in Wisconsin was an initiative of the Center for the Humanities at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, supported by the A. W. Mellon Foundation; the Evjue Foundation; UW-Madison Libraries; the Departments of East Asian Languages and Literature, English and History; the Anonymous Fund of the College of Letters & Science; the Wisconsin Humanities Council; and the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction.
2015-2016 Annual Student Conference Keynote: David Henry Hwang
David Henry Hwang is a Chinese-American and award-winning playwright, described by the New York Times as “a true original” and by TIME magazine as “the first important dramatist of American public life since Arthur Miller.” He is America’s most-produced living opera librettist according to Opera News and is best known as the author of M. Butterfly (1988), which won a Tony Award and was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize. He is also the author of The Lost Empire, a mini-series adaptation of Wu Cheng’en’s Journey to the West that aired in 2001 on NBC. Hwang will meet with high school students from across the state at the Great World Texts in Wisconsin program's Annual Student Conference. He will also deliver a public lecture.
Journey to the West in Wisconsin Participants
In 2015-2016, nearly 65 educators at 23 high schools around the state participated in Journey to the West Wisconsin.
|Baraboo High School||Baraboo||Amanda Jamae|
|Bay Port High School||Green Bay||Janelle Bailey|
|Big Foot High School||Walworth||Suzanne Floody|
|Bonduel High School||Bonduel||Hannah Agyekum|
|Clark Street Community School||Middleton||Bryn Orum|
|Cochrane-Fountain City School||Fountain City||Terri Karsten|
|Community High School||Milwaukee||William Harvill|
|Elkhart Lake-Glenbeulah High School||Elkhart Lake||Lei Lund|
|Kohler High School||Kohler||Kyle McGilligan-Bentin|
|Lodi High School||Lodi||Carrie Kerska|
|Madison Country Day School||Middleton||Evelyn Lasky|
|Madison East High School||Madison||Amy Isensee|
|Milwaukee High School of the Arts||Milwaukee||Krista Claypool|
|Necedah Area High School||Necedah||Mikki Maddox|
|New Horizons Charter School||Shorewood||Renee Glembin|
|Osseo-Fairchild High School||Osseo||Denise Beasley|
|Oshkosh North High School||Oshkosh||Jason Cummings|
|Oshkosh West High School||Oshkosh||Brian Phelps|
|Prescott High School||Prescott||Mandy Bernick|
|Rock University High School||Janesville||Matt Wolf|
|Southern Door High School||Appleton||Brett Hanson|
|St. Francis Xavier High School||Milwaukee||Lynn Zetzman|
|Washington High School||Milwaukee||Alexander Branderhorst|