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Art of Giving & Gift of Art

In an age dominated by consumerism, it has become increasingly important to find non-commercial spaces in both our private lives and communities. Whether it's a question of organ donation, academic integrity, or the gift of life itself, some of our most sacred bonds, values, and actions are motivated by generosity or charity rather than profit.  From a mother "giving birth" to the controversial gift of death through euthanasia, the bonds created by generosity can nevertheless be both nourishing and oppressive, including the "gifts" of language and art itself.  To better understand the centrality of giving to the creation and preservation of communal bonds, we'll explore relevant novels, films, and short critical texts that raise key questions about giving and generosity.  Although our discussions will be framed by our readings and film screenings, the research paper is open to any area of inquiry relevant to giving and generosity.