Presidential Scholars Theses (1990 – 2006)


Solo flight


Presidential Scholars Thesis (UNI Access Only)

First Advisor

Barbara Lounsberry, Advisor


Solo Flight is a series of vignettes interspersed with reflections. Snippets are easier to polish and the tone in a short piece is easier to control. In addition, I admire writers such as Bruce Chatwin, Annie Dillard, and Joan Didion, all of whom effectively use the technique of arranging a series of short scenes or commentaries to reflect upon each other.

For the presentation, I have selected incidents from a number of different sections of Solo Flight in order to recreate a sense of the variety and balance of the work as a whole. The readings attempt to capture some sense of the wonder and despair, seeking and emptiness, confusion and illumination which characterized this time in my life.

To begin, I will provide a brief view of my daily routine while living in Angers and attempt to recreate the atmosphere at CIDEF, the intensive language program at which I studied. I will then read from chapter seven, "Resting My Wings II." The incidents of this chapter take place during the week of Spring break, which I spent with my friend Eleanor in Paris.

Throughout the writing, I have tried to keep in mind my original purpose, which was to convey to the audience a sense of the experience itself, a sense of what it was like to be to be a human being, to be a foreigner, to be an American, to be me.

Date of Award



Department of English Language and Literature

Presidential Scholar Designation

A paper submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the designation Presidential Scholar


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Date Original


Object Description

1 PDF file (171 pages)

Date Digital



©1994 Jonna Higgins





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