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DeWitt Clinton High School, Norwood, Bronx, District 10

Serving Norwood, a diverse community of 143,000 in north central Bronx, DeWitt Clinton has worked with Behind the Book since our inception in autumn 2003. DeWitt has a student body of about 4100 and is home to our annual activism and literary criticism seminars.


2010 - 2011


Grades 11 and 12

Bill Telepan, Inspired By Ingredients: Market Menus and Family Favorites


Grades 11 and 12

Alissa Quart, The Buying and Selling of Teenagers


Grades 11 and 12

Mark Kurlansky, Nonviolence: 25 Lessons from the History of A Dangerous Idea


Grades 11 and 12

Ben Greenman, What He’s Poised To Do


Grades 11 and 12

Marina Budhos, Tell Us We’re Home



Grades 11 & 12
WITT Seminar Conference: A semester-long seminar on food politics and sustainability.
Elizabeth Royte, Garbage Land: On the Secret Trail of Trash.
Novella Carpenter, Farm City: The Education of an Urban Farmer.
Marion Nestle, Food Politics: How the Food Industry Influences Nutrition and Health.

Grade 11
Literary Criticism Workshop: A series of in-depth analytical discussions with authors.
Joshua Ferris, Then We Came to the End.
Russell Banks, Rule of the Bone.
Margo Jefferson, On Michael Jackson


Grades 11 & 12
WITT Seminar Conference: a semester-long study of the intersection between writing and activism
Sarah Schulman, Rat Bohemia
Sahir Hammad, Breaking Poems
George Packer, Betrayed

Literary Criticism Seminar
Colum McCann, This Side of Brightness
Andre Aciman, False Papers
Martha Southgate, Third Girl From the Left


The WITT Seminar
Standing for Word, Image, Technology, & Team, The WITT Seminar is a newly formed class of about 20 diverse students brought together to research, study and interview activists. The seminar works in conjunction with Behind the Book to provide the students with the tools to address issues pertinent to them and to foster a forum in which they can discuss these issues with their peers and their community.

This year, students study the works of Katha Pollitt, author of Virginity or Death! And Other Social and Political Issues of Our Time; Adrian Nicole LeBlanc, author of Random Family and Louis Reyes Rivera, co-editor of Bum Rush the Page: A Def Poetry Jam.

"...an activist is someone who is informed, passionate, and/or outspoken as he or she engages with others about critical issues...
in this publication, we are trying to gain the attention of other students
to see eye to eye that there are issues in our community...
We wish that every student become a great leader by standing up for what they believe is right." *

* from the prologue of Magpie , ed: winter 2005-06

Advanced Placement Spanish Language Class
Students read the Spanish version of the book.   Author visits and class assignments are conducted in Spanish.

Marisela Rizik, El Tiempo del Olvido ( Of Forgotten Times )
Nelly Rosario, El Canto del Aqua: Una Novela   ( Song of the Water Saints )

Literary Criticism Class
Students study the following books this semester:

Marina Budhos, Ask Me No Questions
Francine Prose, A Changed Man
Colson Whitehead, Apex Hides the Hurt: A Novel

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