Date of Award
Master of Arts (MA)
These excerpts from the comedic novel The Demon Syllabus, narrated by the protagonist, Professor Kim Van Vimishtechten, surround the events at a college where members of the administration have been arrested for running a campus prostitution ring. The effects of the scandal on the college community are intercut with events from Van Vimishtechten's personal life. The narrative is extremely digressive; past and present are intertwined to such an extent that they become difficult to separate- both for the characters and the reader. Running parallel to the public scandal at the college are Van Vimishtechten's obsession with a course syllabus. Despite the fact that the course has ended, he cannot stop working on the syllabus, to the detriment of his marriage and his sanity. There are a large number of characters who appear briefly and contribute to the novel's humor. Episodic in structure, these excerpts form a mosaic of contemporary academic life with an accent on the absurd, the sad, and the frailties of human nature.
Voorhees, Barry, "The Demon Syllabus" (2016). English Master’s Theses. 131.