This semester, MBS is introducing a new 12th Grade English elective, “Garden State of Mind: Literature of New Jersey,” exploring the themes and settings that influence the state’s resident artists. On Thursday, January 26, English teacher Lisa Tilton-Levine brought in our own Head Librarian and writer Erinn Salge to discuss her essay, “I Pledge Allegiance to the Mall,” which was recently published in an anthology about New Jersey.
The students are taking inspiration from the essay and have been writing about places in the state that have special meaning to them — from wooded trails to the Asbury Park beach.
Ms. Salge spoke about her journey as a writer and the significance of growing up in suburban New Jersey. In Ms. Salge’s words, her essay examines her “growth into adulthood through the lens of various malls and the parenthood-induced realization that maybe downtown is where I belong.”