The Maverick Who Started This
Karen Christensen talks about Marvin Mudrick as teacher, writer, and provocateur, and what he would say about the next 50 years
Marvin Mudrick was a prominent and controversial literary critic who founded the College of Creative Studies (CCS) in 1967. As a student, Karen Christensen wrote an article about CCS that Mudrick curtly told her was “the first piece about the College I’ve liked.” She has now republished six of Mudrick’s books and will talk about him as a teacher and writer, and about the College as a feat of imagination and determination, arguing that his vision for undergraduate education in the arts and the sciences provides a model for the 21st century.
“A one-man commando squad and independent operator, Marvin Mudrick was the most maverick literary critic of his time and ours–ferocious, funny, and fearlessly honest.” -James Wolcott, Vanity Fair
Karen Christensen (CCS Literature ‘81) is an environmentalist, publisher, and author who chose UC Santa Barbara over Yale because of Marvin Mudrick. He asked her to teach a course on literary letters; a few years later she worked on the T. S. Eliot Letters in London.
The College of Creative Studies celebrates its 50th Anniversary by sponsoring a series of events during 2017-2018.