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What's the best book you ever read for a school assignment?
Oh, wow! By "school," do you mean my entire academic career? With hundreds, maybe thousands, to choose from, I don't even know where to start. Maybe I'll look at it from a different angle. What book was the subject of the academic paper I found most fascinating, and am most proud of? That would be Jean Ingelow's odd little story "Mopsa the Fairy," which I read in one my favorite-ever classes, Victorian Children's Literature (with Dr. Kelly Hager, at Simmons College's Center for the Study of Children's Literature). To the best of my memory, it was the gender roles that fascinated me. I think I wrote about female entrapment and male liberty -- "boys in flight and grounded women" -- in "Mopsa" and in Victorian England.