MESA Brings English Majors Along For The Ride

On April 6th, MESA brought students to Plymouth’s The Flying Monkey to see the film Paterson. The event was the first film outing of the semester and it brought students and faculty together to view the literary motion picture.


Paterson follows the life of a bus-driving poet, the poet’s eccentric wife, and their trouble-making bulldog. The film stars Adam Driver, and is directed by Jim Jarmusch, a celebrated independent filmmaker.

Driver’s character, named Paterson, finds a static comfortability in his routines. While studying the world outside his bus window, Paterson creates concise poetry relating to the subtle details of his life. The film weaves through the poet’s day-to-day observations and creative process, which contrasts with the hectic and unpredictable lives of those around him.

Professor Paul Rogalus, film buff of the English department, nominated Paterson as the movie for the outing. Professor Rogalus is currently teaching American Literature II, and will be showing another Jarmusch film, Dead Man, as part of the course’s curriculum. The link between American Lit II, as well as the film’s focus on poetry, made it a must-see for MESA.

On the film and the event itself, Paul said:

“Jim Jarmusch is known as the king of American Independent film.  His movies usually don’t do very well at the box office in the United States, partly because they don’t get widely distributed.  It was great that the Flying Monkey brought his new movie “Paterson” to Plymouth, and it was also great of the MESA students to support Independent films. Hopefully, we can do more of this.”

MESA, or Mentoring Enhances Student Achievement, is an organization comprised of PSU English students. The organization is facilitated by Professor Rogalus and Professor Joe Mealey, both of the English Department. MESA hosts events for English students, providing them with social events, networking opportunities, and skill-building workshops.

As the semester closes, MESA will host a viewing of Dead Man, which will be open to all students. Dead Man, starring Johnny Depp, is a black-and-white American Western, which follows the antics of the gunslinger William Blake (a reference to the 18th century Romantic British poet of the same name).

For more information on MESA and MESA events, view the organization’s Facebook page, or join members on Thursdays at 2PM in the Ellen Reed House.


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