The Game of Life
Winning strategies from our expert
Dr. Ainehi Edoro
Assistant Professor of English
Do you remember an amazing teacher? The one who made you sit a little straighter, hoping to be noticed and hoping, too, you’d know the answer to every question? That’s Ainehi Edoro, a first-year faculty member in the Department of English, whose esprit should be bottled because it probably ignites something students hadn’t guessed they could summon — deep interest in literature. She was listed among the most influential Africans in 2016 by New Africa Magazine, an honor she attributes to her blog Brittle Paper. But it’s her zest for teaching a course about the theory and history of the novel — and how writers worldwide take ownership and keep changing the novel — that comes through in class.
Why does this course excite you?
I don’t teach novels that I don’t love — intellectually and emotionally and think are beautiful. My students see that passion. I tell them “I love this novel” and then guide them through the sort of close reading that we’ve lost. It’s important to read closely, think deeply and ask questions because all of that reveals what’s beautiful in the text.
What kind of questions?
What is the text doing? Why is it brilliant? What is the author communicating? There is a kind of fidelity toward the text that goes beyond loving it, and that’s what I want to help my students see and understand.
Do students catch on?
You have to have inquisitive students. Students at every university are unique; Marquette students are good thinkers. I’m teaching a set of ideas and techniques, but I have to let the magic happen in the classroom. That’s the only way you can think through texts in a meaningful way.
Experts share how they play the game of life. Tell us about an expert we should interview @ magazine.marquette.edu/share.