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[Past Event] Short Stories of Lucia Berlin (Text: A Manual for Cleaning Women)

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Course Description:

Lucia Berlin published 77 short stories during her lifetime. She won an American Book Award, was published in "The Atlantic," and was well known among writers. But, she only gained widespread recognition throughout the world posthumously with the publication in 2015 of "A Manual for Cleaning Women," the book we'll read for this course.

We'll examine her preferred short story form, the French-named "auto-fiction," which is the real telling of one's own life experience, but artfully told. In auto-fiction the author can change or embellish anything she wants as long as the story still rings true and the events or places can be traced to something that really occurred. Berlin's content showcases women who work soul-ravaging jobs to raise their children. They work as cleaning women, clerks, laundresses, and more. She tells these stories through a realistic marriage of humor and tragedy.

About the Reading:

1. We will read "A Manual for Cleaning Women."
2. Any edition will do. Dr. Curry will use edition: ISBN 978-0-374-20239-2


Tuition: $60.00

Additional Fees: $0.00

Register Myself


Fridays, Sept. 4, 11, 18, 25; Oct. 2, 9 *10:00-11:30am* (6 sessions)


We'll meet online via Zoom. Zoom is free and easy to use. OLLI will walk you through the steps. Prior to each Zoom meeting (class), you will receive an email with specific details on that meeting.


Renée R. Curry, Ph.D., retired as a full professor in the School of Humanities and Communication at Cal State Monterey Bay.