English is a well-known subject, but what most
people don’t know is that English scholars do a lot
of different things. One of these scholars is Dr. Gary
Hentzi, whose interest in culture dates from a very
early age. “I guess I always knew that I was interested
in the arts and culture. I started out more interested in
music than anything else, but it quickly branched out
into an interest in literature,” he says.
As a young professor, he specialized in one of the
founders of the novel as a literary genre in the early
18th century: Daniel Defoe. This English trader, writer,
journalist, pamphleteer and spy became most famous
for his novel Robinson Crusoe. “Defoe certainly
is one of the founders of the novel as a genre in the
sense that his books are among the prose narratives
from that period that continue to interest us, especially
in retrospect. In part, it’s because we’ve had almost
300 years of the novel after him,” says Hentzi.
Romero, A. 2017. Hentzi looks at literature and its circumstances. College Talk (19):1-1. 16 April 2017.