Skip to Content

English Department

Home > Spring 2013

Spring 2013

Dear Students,

Verify course selections in YES to see the complete selection of course dates and times when the Spring 2013 schedule goes live on October 29.

You will need to meet with you adviser IN PERSON before your registration appointment window at which time your adviser will release an electronic academic hold on your account so that you can register. Please email your adviser for an appointment. The name of your adviser as well as the time of your registration appointment window is listed on your YES landing page.

Instructors, sections, and topics for 100-level writing courses are subject to change after Course Request Period, depending on enrollments.

Admittance to Honors sections and 200-level Creative Writing workshops are subject to instructor approval.
See individual course listings for specific instructions.

  • Click here for courses meeting ethnic/non-western or pre-1800 literature major and minor requirements
  • Click here for dual-listed courses which may be counted toward the major
  • Click here for 100-level course descriptions
  • Click here for 200-level course descriptions

 
Note: The descriptions that appear below for Spring 2013 are grouped by course. If you do not find your section number, it means that that instructor has not yet provided a description.  The webmaster will make every effort to continually update this page, so please check back often.
 
 
These courses meet the ethnic/non-western literature major and minor requirement: These courses meet the pre-eighteen hundred literature major and minor requirement:
ASIA 200W ENGL 210
ASIA 251 ENGL 221
ENGL 263 ENGL 230
ENGL 263W ENGL 248
ENGL 271 ENGL 252A
ENGL 272.02 ENGL 272.01
ENGL 275 ENGL 274.01
ENGL 278 ENGL 280
ENGL 288W.02 ENGL 282
ENGL 288.03  
   

 

Spring 2013 100-level English Courses:


 

ENGL 100 Composition

.01 MWF 210-300 West Hall 102 Porterfield

.02 TR 810-925 Sutherland House 106 Higgs

 

ENGL 102W Literature and Analytical Thinking

.01 MWF 910-1000 Buttrick Hall 308 Samuel

In this class, we will be examining a broad range of literature, music, film, and art by women writers and artists of the African diaspora. By doing so, we will consider how women writers uniquely approach topics that are crucial and recurring within the study of the African diaspora (i.e. – slavery; love, sexuality, and relationships). Why are women writers often relegated to the margins of various Afro-diasporic canons? In what ways do intersections of race and gender generate distinct concerns, political positions, and literary/artistic techniques? Authors will include acclaimed black women writers such as Octavia Butler, Jamaica Kincaid, and Ama Ata Aidoo, alongside art and spoken word poetry by artists such as Kara Walker and Staceyann Chin, a film selection, and musical selections from artists such as Janelle Monae, Nina Simone, and Erykah Badu. This class will also make use of social networking tools, such as Twitter, to facilitate learning. While we will use our course materials as a primary engine of our discussions, we will regularly ground our discussions in the real-world, large and small-scale, implications of our discussions.

  Women of the African Diaspora

.02 MWF 1010-1100  Sutherland House 106 Anne Castro

What does it mean to just “be yourself?” This class will explore the many ways we perform in our daily lives and how we use different types of performance to define ourselves with and against others’ expectations.  We will look at numerous texts in which a character questions what it means to “perform” his or her own identity on and off the public stage. We will read and critically analyze poetry, drama, fiction, live performance, and film. The class will examine the ways in which different communities demand distinct representations of gender, sexuality, and race. Furthermore, we will see what happens when a person’s performance of his or her own identity clashes with cultural expectations.

.03 MWF 1010-1100 Stambaugh House 107 Boutelle

In 2011, Merriam-Webster added “bromance” to its US Dictionary, defined as “a close nonsexual relationship between men.” Although the term has only come to prominence in the last decade, thanks largely to the films of Judd Apatow, this course will explore these relationships across a variety of literary and film traditions. What possibilities are opened/closed in exploring male intimacy in this way? Why are these relationships definitively nonsexual? Where is line between bromance and homosexuality and, more importantly, why do we feel the need to ask/know? How do racial and cultural differences inflect these relationships? In addition to exploring these bonds between men, we will also explore close female friendships and think critically about the different stakes of each. What is the connection between gender and belonging? This course will ask us to reevaluate the ways we understand race, gender, sexuality, and (non)sexual desire through the lens of bromances and sisterhoods.

.04 MWF 1110-1200 Sutherland House 106

.05 MWF 910-1000 Memorial Hall 104 Barter

What do we mean when we talk about "justice?" To what extent do we measure a society by the structures it has in place to ensure the ministration of justice? In this course, we will examine works of fiction in order to ask questions about how justice systems exist and operate within dystopian societies. We will also examine other types of literature—court opinions, essays, and news articles—to identify how our familiar systems of justice sometimes produce dystopian results. Throughout all of our readings, we will work toward a deeper understanding of the relationship between these fraught concepts, and particularly the extent to which our definition of dystopia depends on deeply ingrained notions of "justice." Readings will include young adult fiction such as The Hunger Games and The Giver, short works of fiction by Coetzee and Kafka, court opinions, poetry, and various historical texts.

.06MWF 910-1000 Gillette Hall 103 Mensah

.07 TR 810-925 West Hall 102 Pellarin

.08 TR 935-1050 Crawford House 208 Chance Woods

"Textual Identities" This course exposes students to the evolving conceptualizations of the self and of personhood through western culture from classical antiquity to the height of English Romanticism. One consistent theme of this intellectual trajectory will be the implications of orienting the self around technologies of writing. Writers such as Plato, Augustine, Dante, Shakespeare, and Coleridge dwelled at length on how writing and reading change human psychology and humans' disposition toward the world and others. Thus, this course will give students an opportunity to think about the very idea of writing and reading as they engage in the processes of reading and writing. We will consider how various media (e.g. the scroll, the codex, the manuscript, the printing press, the Internet) through history have fundamentally altered our manner of conceptualizing the world and our place in it. The course thereby presents students with the unique opportunities to engage in the meta-cognitive practice of writing about writing through history and to consider their current place in the evolution of discursive media in modern culture.

.09 TR 1100-1215 Gillette Hall 103 DeGuzman

Islands – pieces of land surrounded by water – serve as potent locations for the literary imagination. They have been called upon to evoke individual isolation, rousing adventure, and unspoiled paradise. But this course will approach such assumptions through the relationship between select islands of the Caribbean and another isolated landmass: Britain. With colonialism as our broadest framework, we will explore what happens when the cultures of freestanding pieces of land meet one another. What popular myths exist about the Caribbean and Britain as a result of their status as islands? In what ways have the cultures of both locales spread into one another, as well as across the globe? Could we ultimately describe a particular insecurity that comes with being from and living on islands? Our discussions will question the history of colonialism, the function of the literary canon, and the industry of tourism. We will consider these topics in various ways as we read and write about works by William Shakespeare, John Ruskin, C.L.R. James, Kamau Brathwaite, V.S. Naipaul, Michelle Cliff, and Dorothea Smartt.

.10 TR 110-225 Murray House 206 Fang

.11 TR 235-350 Furman 209 Quigley

Seeing Green: Imagining the “Natural” To what do we refer when we invoke “nature,” “the natural,” and their opposites? How did we come up with these terms in the first place, and how are their meanings context-specific? In this course, we will not arrive at definitive answers to these questions, but we will explore them vigorously. Our investigations will carry us through broad expanses of time and space, and toward a wide variety of cultural products that offer themselves – more and less obviously – to our lines of inquiry. Expect to engage with travel writing, with the novel, with poetry, with film, with drama, and more besides. Expect, too, to focus intently on developing the faculties of criticism, argumentation, and, most importantly of all, writing: students will regularly submit brief reading responses in addition to the course’s longer essay assignments.

.12 TR 235-350 Murray House 206 Saborido

.13 TR 400-515 Buttrick Hall 112 Hines

The Modern South? The Southern Modern?  “…the quality that most truly sets the South apart from other regions, its sheer investment in the meaning of itself.” -John Jeremiah Sullivan,  New York Times,  6/28/2012

This course will critically explore and challenge the Southern “investment in the meaning of itself” as well as the investment in the meaning of the South by the rest of the country, and the rest of the world. We will tackle this mode of place-making by testing and eliding our own assumptions of what it might mean to be Southern and what it might mean to be American without a South at all. These paths will be tested through an intensive semester of writing critical essays addressing our shared reading, which will include texts by Jesmyn Ward, W.E.B. DuBois, Zora Neale Hurston, and William Faulkner.

.14 TR 400-515 West Hall 107 Bagneris

 

ENGL 104W: Prose Fiction; Forms and Techniques
 
.01 MWF 910-1000 Calhoun Hall 203 Bernard

Insides In this course we will investigate literature that attempts to confront and distort our perception of the world through its portrayal of the interiority of the mind. What does your brain look like on the inside—are there couches, chairs, birds? How might literary tools such as point of view, metaphor, characterization, etc. be used to define the interior space of the mind, particularly as it confronts the exterior world? Why is this space necessary to explore? Through analysis and close-readings of select novels, novellas and short stories we will learn to think critically and creatively about the elements of fiction in order to generate thoughtful discussions about the ability of language to capture (or not capture) that which is impossible to see. Ultimately, this is a course that focuses on honing not only your critical thinking skills but your writing as well. Therefore, during the course of the semester, you will produce three essays that demonstrate your ability to form meaningful and persuasive arguments using textual evidence, while synthesizing the ideas you find most compelling.

.02 MWF 1110-1200 West Hall 102 Miller
.03 MWF 1210-100 Gillette Hall 103 Spigner
Mythmaking and the American Imagination: This course will focus primarily but not exclusively upon 19th- and 20th-Century American fiction.  Reading widely across the two centuries, the American-authored short stories and novels at the center of the class include ancient mythological forms, allusions, themes, and concerns. Throughout the semester, we will consider the ways that classical myths influenced American storytelling, cultural constructions, and national identity. The American texts include but are not limited to The Red Badge of Courage, Of One Blood, selections from Aesop's Fables, and Wonder Woman.  Additionally, we will read portions of Bulfinch's Mythology, the French novella Undine (in translation), and Frankenstein. Students will write two papers and several short reflection papers, lead discussion at least once during the semester, and participate regularly in class. 
.04 MWF 310-400 Buttrick Hall 306 Birdsong
 

.05 MWF 210-300 TBA Justin Quarry

Monsters in Fiction~In this course, we will explore portrayals of various monsters—both realistic and fantastic—in narratives ranging from the late nineteenth to the twenty-first centuries and analyze the elements of fiction used to illuminate them and in turn the societal anxieties and desires in the midst of which they appear. Likewise, we will attempt to define, and perhaps redefine, what, or who, exactly, a "monster" is and what makes a such a creature simultaneously horrifying and fascinating, and we will proceed to examine novels, graphic novels, and short stories in order to determine the terms by which so-called monsters are understood and described, and what beyond the norm these creatures represent, both literally and metaphorically, in each encounter.

Moreover, however, the aim of this course is to teach you to think critically about literature, and so we also will devote a significant amount of time to focusing on the writing process by way of close readings, discussions, and writing assignments. Throughout the semester, you will practice analyzing and critiquing our selected literary works in three essays as well as several reading responses and in-class writing assignments, each intended to help you more clearly and more persuasively present your arguments by basing them on textual evidence.

.06 MWF 110-200 Gillette Hall 103 Justin Quarry

Monsters in Fiction~In this course, we will explore portrayals of various monsters—both realistic and fantastic—in narratives ranging from the late nineteenth to the twenty-first centuries and analyze the elements of fiction used to illuminate them and in turn the societal anxieties and desires in the midst of which they appear. Likewise, we will attempt to define, and perhaps redefine, what, or who, exactly, a "monster" is and what makes a such a creature simultaneously horrifying and fascinating, and we will proceed to examine novels, graphic novels, and short stories in order to determine the terms by which so-called monsters are understood and described, and what beyond the norm these creatures represent, both literally and metaphorically, in each encounter.

Moreover, however, the aim of this course is to teach you to think critically about literature, and so we also will devote a significant amount of time to focusing on the writing process by way of close readings, discussions, and writing assignments. Throughout the semester, you will practice analyzing and critiquing our selected literary works in three essays as well as several reading responses and in-class writing assignments, each intended to help you more clearly and more persuasively present your arguments by basing them on textual evidence.

 

ENGL 115F: First Year Writing Seminar

.17 MWF 910-1000 Benson Hall 200 Baca

FYS: Fictions Possibilities-What makes fiction tick? What are the possibilities and boundaries of short stories? Flash fiction?

Novels? Where is the common ground between fiction and poetry, fiction and drama, fiction and film? What techniques are shared, borrowed, adapted? This course is designed with the interests of new and potential fiction writers in mind. An exploration of several different prose fiction forms and the approaches the techniques many contemporary writers use in creating them. How do different writers represent time? Consciousness? Perception? What kinds of architecture do these writers use?

Consideration of the tensions within fiction, the ways different writers portray character, the integration of lyricism and storytelling, as well as ways contemporary fiction writers claim received forms or re-invent them.

.31 MW 110-225 Stambaugh House 107 Covington

FYS:Existential Fictions: What nonsense. They read quickly, badly, and pass judgment before they have understood. So let's begin all over. This doesn't amuse anyone, neither you nor me. But we have to hit the nail on the head. Jean-Paul Sartre, What is Literature, 1947. Fiction, D.H. Lawrence suggests, is a laboratory for philosophical problems, and this course will enter the lab of existentialists. Sometimes called, with scorn or praise, a "psychology," existentialism has been a dominant post-World War II philosophy, because it directs its concerns not to a transcendental realm but to the world of human behavior, a world of guns, unrequited love, people reading too quickly. Sartre's continual effort to be understood (illustrated in the above quotation) characterizes both his method and what he saw as the human condition. For him, people are free - or condemned - to choose. But what does choice mean, if the consequences cannot be reckoned? To choose as an individual or an institution? Finally, why choose to be human? We will take on such questions in the fictions of existentialists (Sartre, Beauvoir, Camus) and in the existential ideas of other contemporary works (Murdoch, Atwood, Madonna, Oe, Elvis Costello). We will try to hit the nail on the head - if we can identify it and find a hammer.

.37 MWF 1110-1200 Murray House 206 Morrell

FYS:Virtual Worlds: Virtual Worlds, Augmented Realities. This course will examine fictional and nonfictional representations of cyberspace, challenging students to think critically about the role of social media in contemporary culture. We will consider how digital technologies intersect with everyday habits and with world historical events. Through an examination of literature and film, ranging from William Gibson¿s Neuromancer to the Wachowski brothers¿ The Matrix, we will discuss issues of privacy and intellectual property. We will also explore other intriguing issues, such as the agents who control our perception of reality and the motivations for constructing alternate worlds.

 
ENGL 116W: Introduction to Poetry   
 
.01MWF 845-1000 Calhoun Hall 219 Wollaeger
 
.02 MWF 1010-1100 Hank Ingram House 210 Kinard
 
.03 MWF 1110-1200 Calhoun Hall 203 Bradley
 
.04 MWF 1210-100 Wilson Hall 122
 
.06 MWF 110-200 Calhoun Hall 103 Lisa Dordal
 The main objectives of this course are to widen your knowledge of poetry, to help you become close readers of poetry, and to help you develop your critical writing skills. The first part of this course will be organized around formal considerations (diction, tone, figures of speech, sound, rhythm, etc.). The second part of the course will include brief case studies of Emily Dickinson, Robert Frost, Sylvia Plath and Langston Hughes, as well as several thematic case studies. Requirements will include three papers (plus three revisions), one midterm exam, and several brief response papers. 
.07 MWF 310-400 Calhoun Hall 106 Lisa Dordal
The main objectives of this course are to widen your knowledge of poetry, to help you become close readers of poetry, and to help you develop your critical writing skills. The first part of this course will be organized around formal considerations (diction, tone, figures of speech, sound, rhythm, etc.). The second part of the course will include brief case studies of Emily Dickinson, Robert Frost, Sylvia Plath and Langston Hughes, as well as several thematic case studies. Requirements will include three papers (plus three revisions), one midterm exam, and several brief response papers.

 

.08 TR 935-1050 Murray House 206 Sarah Kersh

Poetry is a particularly rich and rewarding genre; it is also frequently a difficult one. Our focus will be on the analysis, appreciation, and craft of poetry through the study of a variety of poetic forms. While our focus will be on poems in English, we will read poems from a wide range of periods, places, and genres. Utilizing a number of learning strategies we will develop a vocabulary for the understanding of poetry and effective tools for the verbal and written analysis of it. To succeed in this course, students must be willing to think openly about how they interact with language and the world around them, as well as seriously pursue the questions: What is poetry? Where do we find poetry? And why should we study poetry at all?

.09 TR 1100-1215 Sutherland House 106 Sarah Kersh

Poetry is a particularly rich and rewarding genre; it is also frequently a difficult one. Our focus will be on the analysis, appreciation, and craft of poetry through the study of a variety of poetic forms. While our focus will be on poems in English, we will read poems from a wide range of periods, places, and genres. Utilizing a number of learning strategies we will develop a vocabulary for the understanding of poetry and effective tools for the verbal and written analysis of it. To succeed in this course, students must be willing to think openly about how they interact with language and the world around them, as well as seriously pursue the questions: What is poetry? Where do we find poetry? And why should we study poetry at all?

.10 MWF 210-300 Sutherland House 106 Cosner

.11 TR 810-925 Calhoun Hall 117

ENGL 117W: Introduction to Literary Criticism
.02 TR 1100-1215 Stevenson Center 1117 Eatough

This course provides a survey of several theoretical approaches that have influenced literary criticism in the past decade. Readings will consist of works from philosophy, sociology, psychology, cultural studies, gender studies, and, of course, literary studies, with an eye toward how these methodologies provide us with tools for interpreting literature. The specific theoretical lenses we will be investigating will include world literature, the sociology of literature, post-secularism, Marxism, alternative modernities, affect theory, and surface reading. Assignments will consist of several short papers and one longer paper, each of which will require you to either: a) explicate a theoretical text; or b) apply a single theoretical model to a particular literary text.

.04 MW 1135-1250 Stambaugh House Humberto Garcia

How are words stitched together so as to create “literature?” By what means does a poem, novel, play, or film continue to live in the past, present, and future? And what are the tools through which readers are to dissect these monstrous creations? This writing-intensive course will look for answers to these questions by investigating one aptly chosen specimen of a living textual corpse—Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein (1818). We will read and re-read this twentieth-century cult classic from a wide variety of critical approaches to literature, i.e. the theoretical frameworks by which we bestow value and meaning onto literary texts. The goal of this experiment is to develop your ability to ready closely and intensively, think critically, and write and revise extensively. We will observe how interpretations of Shelley’s novel shift according to different schools of criticism (i.e. formalism, Marxism, psychoanalysis, feminism, postcolonial theory, etc.), while adopting an inter-textual approach that considers the influential works of William Godwin (her father), Mary Wollstonecraft (her mother), and Edmund Burke (romantic theorist) as well as film adaptations of the mythic figure of “Frankenstein” (the monster and/or the scientist). By the end of the semester, you will have produced a well-written, well-theorized paper on this novel and mastered the critical reading skills that will be of value to you long after this course has ended.
This course is designed to foster intense class discussion, develop original ideas, and improve your writing. To achieve these goals, students will learn to use multi-media and blogs to communicate with a real public audience online, in addition to writing and revising a semester-long term paper. You are expected to think, write, create, and imagine wildly. Attendance and participation, in and out of class, are not just mandatory but essential to your success.

This course will examine the rise of American Literature in the United States from the end of the revolutionary period to the late-nineteenth-century. We will read the work of authors who shaped America’s literary landscape, challenged conventional wisdom, and who help us to imagine alternative literary histories in the US. As much as the course will provide students with a window on cultural responses to prominent issues from our nation’s past, it is also a course in developing the students’ general critical skills. As such, this course is designed to strengthen critical reading and writing skills as we examine literary texts to understand how writers use their work to preserve, disseminate, and analyze the social, cultural, and political issues of their day. Among the authors we will read are Lydia Maria Child, Harriet Wilson, and William Dean Howells.

 

ENGL 118W Introduction to Literary and Cultural Analysis

.01 MWF 810-900 Benson Hall 200 Hart

 

Reading the Detective: Sherlock Holmes  Detective fiction, as a genre, developed during the mid-nineteenth-century. The rest, as they say, is history. One need only turn on the television to witness the continued popularity of this genre. However, before the world was inundated with these detectives, there was one detective: Sherlock Holmes. Of course, Holmes was neither the first detective—that honor goes to Edgar Allan Poe’s Dupin—nor the only detective of his time; however, he remains the most popular and most influential character of the genre. As such, this course will allow students to learn about the genre of detective fiction through a comprehensive study of Sherlock Holmes, as both a literary character and as a cultural icon. Over the course of the semester, we will read several of the major works in Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s Holmes canon, and given the extent to which Doyle’s detective has captured the popular imagination since his “birth,” we will watch several film and television adaptations and read a few (of the very many) parodies, pastiches, and contemporary literary adaptations of Holmes. In reading and watching these texts, we will understand the ways in which detective fiction is concerned with narrative, ways of seeing/reading, ways of knowing, questions of identity, questions of interpretation, plot, character, and context. We will also be able to ask (and hopefully answer) a series of questions about both the genre and about Sherlock Holmes, among them: What are the conventions of detective fiction? How have these conventions endured and/or been modified over time? How do these tales reflect contemporary concerns in turn-of-the-century Britain? What are the recurrent themes in the Holmes canon? Why does Holmes resonate with modern audiences? How and why has Holmes been adapted over time? How do contemporary adaptations reflect contemporary concerns? What is the cultural significance of Sherlock Holmes? Along with Doyle’s Holmes stories, course texts may also include works by Mary Elizabeth Braddon, Robert Louis Stevenson, Loren D. Estleman, and Graham Moore.

 

 

.02 MWF 910-1000 Stevenson Center 6411 Briggs

.03 MWF 1010-1100 Gillette Hall 103

.04 MWF 1010-1100 Murray House 206 Hart

 

Reading the Detective: Sherlock Holmes  Detective fiction, as a genre, developed during the mid-nineteenth-century. The rest, as they say, is history. One need only turn on the television to witness the continued popularity of this genre. However, before the world was inundated with these detectives, there was one detective: Sherlock Holmes. Of course, Holmes was neither the first detective—that honor goes to Edgar Allan Poe’s Dupin—nor the only detective of his time; however, he remains the most popular and most influential character of the genre. As such, this course will allow students to learn about the genre of detective fiction through a comprehensive study of Sherlock Holmes, as both a literary character and as a cultural icon. Over the course of the semester, we will read several of the major works in Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s Holmes canon, and given the extent to which Doyle’s detective has captured the popular imagination since his “birth,” we will watch several film and television adaptations and read a few (of the very many) parodies, pastiches, and contemporary literary adaptations of Holmes. In reading and watching these texts, we will understand the ways in which detective fiction is concerned with narrative, ways of seeing/reading, ways of knowing, questions of identity, questions of interpretation, plot, character, and context. We will also be able to ask (and hopefully answer) a series of questions about both the genre and about Sherlock Holmes, among them: What are the conventions of detective fiction? How have these conventions endured and/or been modified over time? How do these tales reflect contemporary concerns in turn-of-the-century Britain? What are the recurrent themes in the Holmes canon? Why does Holmes resonate with modern audiences? How and why has Holmes been adapted over time? How do contemporary adaptations reflect contemporary concerns? What is the cultural significance of Sherlock Holmes? Along with Doyle’s Holmes stories, course texts may also include works by Mary Elizabeth Braddon, Robert Louis Stevenson, Loren D. Estleman, and Graham Moore.

 

 

.05 MWF 1210-100 Calhoun Hall 423 Hart

 

Reading the Detective: Sherlock Holmes  Detective fiction, as a genre, developed during the mid-nineteenth-century. The rest, as they say, is history. One need only turn on the television to witness the continued popularity of this genre. However, before the world was inundated with these detectives, there was one detective: Sherlock Holmes. Of course, Holmes was neither the first detective—that honor goes to Edgar Allan Poe’s Dupin—nor the only detective of his time; however, he remains the most popular and most influential character of the genre. As such, this course will allow students to learn about the genre of detective fiction through a comprehensive study of Sherlock Holmes, as both a literary character and as a cultural icon. Over the course of the semester, we will read several of the major works in Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s Holmes canon, and given the extent to which Doyle’s detective has captured the popular imagination since his “birth,” we will watch several film and television adaptations and read a few (of the very many) parodies, pastiches, and contemporary literary adaptations of Holmes. In reading and watching these texts, we will understand the ways in which detective fiction is concerned with narrative, ways of seeing/reading, ways of knowing, questions of identity, questions of interpretation, plot, character, and context. We will also be able to ask (and hopefully answer) a series of questions about both the genre and about Sherlock Holmes, among them: What are the conventions of detective fiction? How have these conventions endured and/or been modified over time? How do these tales reflect contemporary concerns in turn-of-the-century Britain? What are the recurrent themes in the Holmes canon? Why does Holmes resonate with modern audiences? How and why has Holmes been adapted over time? How do contemporary adaptations reflect contemporary concerns? What is the cultural significance of Sherlock Holmes? Along with Doyle’s Holmes stories, course texts may also include works by Mary Elizabeth Braddon, Robert Louis Stevenson, Loren D. Estleman, and Graham Moore.

 

 

.06 MWF 1210-100 Crawford House 208 Birdsong

.07 MWF 1210-100 Buttrick Hall 205 Jennifer Krause

Hybrid Identities and Cosmopolitanism ~This course will consider certain transnational issues that have become dominant in contemporary literature, including cultural hybridity, global citizenship, postmodernism, and globalization. Using the concepts of hybrid identity and cosmopolitanism as a starting point, the course will ask: in an age defined by growing globalization, how do citizens of varied cultures and backgrounds confront an ever more inter-national existence? Is it plausible to find a fixed national identity in today’s world? What identifiable markers of identity are affected by our transnational interdependence? What aspects of culture act as catalysts for the hybridization we confront today? Texts will include literary and cultural theory, along with novels by William Gibson, Junot Diaz, Caio Fernando Abreu, and Max Brooks. We will also watch several films, including Scarface and Fight Club.

.08 TR 110-225 TBA Cosner

.09 MW 110-225 Furman 007 King

Memory, Mourning, and Melancholia: For whom do we mourn? This course explores loss and the ways in which it evokes a wide range of affective responses that include grief, depression, fixation, madness, guilt, and even rage. In particular, this class considers the following questions: What is the work of mourning? How is memory constructed, and what is its relationship to mourning? And how does one mourn, much less remember, a history that is elided, overlooked, or forgotten?

 

 

To address these questions, this course investigates various genres – film, novel, poetry, theory, and drama – that cross national and historical boundaries. Texts include the elegiac poetry of Ben Jonson and Amelia Lanyer, Thomas Kyd’s The Spanish Tragedy, Toni Morrison’s Home, Julia Kristeva’s Approaching Abjection, Alison Bechdel’s Fun Home, and Annemarie Jacir’s Salt of this Sea.

 

.10 TR 810-925 Garland Hall 101 Spivey

Why does the U.S. incarcerate so many of its own citizens, more than any other nation in the world? What role does prison play in the national imagination? In this course we will attempt to answer both questions through a study of literature by and about prisoners.  We'll begin the course with a short survey of nineteenth-century American authors (including Emily Dickinson, Edgar Allen Poe and Herman Melville) and examine the frequent motifs of solitude and confinement in their work. To trace changing attitudes toward punishment and incarceration and to broaden our own understanding of the effects of the modern, prison industrial complex, we'll study Truman Capote's twentieth-century classic, In Cold Blood, as well as several recent prison memoirs and two documentary films.

.11 TR 1100-1215 Stambaugh House 107 Spivey

Why does the U.S. incarcerate so many of its own citizens, more than any other nation in the world? What role does prison play in the national imagination? In this course we will attempt to answer both questions through a study of literature by and about prisoners.  We'll begin the course with a short survey of nineteenth-century American authors (including Emily Dickinson, Edgar Allen Poe and Herman Melville) and examine the frequent motifs of solitude and confinement in their work. To trace changing attitudes toward punishment and incarceration and to broaden our own understanding of the effects of the modern, prison industrial complex, we'll study Truman Capote's twentieth-century classic, In Cold Blood, as well as several recent prison memoirs and two documentary films.

.12 TR 110-225 Buttrick Hall 201 Tichi

.13 TR 235-350 West Hall 102 Eatough

 

In recent years, there has been a renewed interest among both novelists and literary critics in how literary experimentalism could form the basis for ethically-attentive political practices.  Where experimental literature from the first half of the twentieth century has often been charged with retreating from politics and focusing instead on overly complex narratives techniques, so-called “late modernist” works claim that experimentalism can help us to imagine new, more equitable socioeconomic systems.  In this course, we will assess the capacity of experimental fiction to imagine new ethical and political perspectives, looking in particular at how these texts encourage critical thinking and cultivate nuanced ideological positions.  Reading experimental fictions from Zadie Smith, Ben Okri, Thomas McCarthy, Will Self, and J. M. Coetzee, we will ask what sorts of communities these texts envision, how they describe the ways in which we can act in the world, and what role language and narrative plays in their understandings of political action.

.14 TR 400-515 Buttrick Hall 204 Eatough

.15 TR 400-515 Calhoun 219 Cosner

.16 MWF 1010-1100 Benson Hall 200 Krause

.17 MWF 110-200 Crawford House 208 Birdsong

.18 MWF 310-400 Buttrick Hall 201 Krause

.19 MW 110-225 Hank Ingram House 208

 

ENGL 120W: Inter mediate Composition

.01 MWF 210-300 Buttrick Hall 2 01 Spivey

In this course, we will develop a sophisticated vocabulary for analyzing persuasive writing. We will explore the five canons of rhetoric, emphasizing practical strategies for inventing arguments and developing an effective written style. While the art of persuasion is ancient, we will apply it to issues both current and local. The Contributor, Nashville's twice-monthly street paper, will serve as a primary text for this course.

 

ENGL 122: Beginning Fiction Workshop
 
 
 
 
 
 

 

 .01 TR 935-1050 Buttrick Hall 202 Jimenez

 

Spring 2013 200-level English Courses:

 

ENGL 200: Intermediate Nonfiction Writing- Life writing: memoirs about people, places, historical moments

 

.01 W 210-500 Furman 202 Solomon

Of all the forms of creative nonfiction, memoir is arguably the most popular. Why so? Memoir writers create from the raw material of their own life a sustained narrative, one that addresses a distinct set of concerns. In so doing, writers of good memoirs transform that raw material into a story others can recognize as instructive, insightful, true to life.   Writers of good memoirs actively consider what is true in their recollections; they reconstruct the past with an insistence on accuracy and evaluate the past from the perspective of the writers’ present, more complex understanding. Writers of good memoirs attract readers because they give those readers a sense of discovery in the reading that parallels the writers’ own discoveries in the process of remembering and then writing about a set of experiences.    

Many common topics for memoir—overcoming hardship or illness, coping with substance abuse or tragedy, achieving celebrity, to name a few—may not readily lend themselves to student creative writing assignments. This course will concentrate instead on three kinds of experiences that offer interesting subject matter for most people: other people, places, and the historical moment. We will read memoirs of all three kinds, and then students will write memoirs that concentrate on these subjects.   The course will emphasize not just the writing, but also revision, the re-vision necessary to rework a draft: to imbue the narrative with more punch, to render the world in more depth, and to give the writing more clarity and interest. These concerns inform good writing in all genres.

Students who register for this class will join a waiting list at first. They should write a 250-word memoir about one family member—someone about whom they can offer a complex portrait—and then email that account to Solomon by January 3 with the subject heading, “English 200 Writing Sample.”   Then, in the week before the semester starts, Solomon will select class participants and email all people on the waiting list to tell them whether they have gained admission.

Note: Because enrollment to this course is by instructor approval based on a submission, all students will initially be placed on the waitlist. After joining the waitlist, all students should contact the instructor regarding the submission requirement. As soon as the instructor selects the class members, that select group of students will be enrolled in the course and all others will be dropped from the waitlist.

 

ENGL 201-01. Advanced Nonfiction Writing

.01 M 310-600 Buttrick Hall 316 Guralnick, P.

Limited enrollment. Admission to the workshop is by instructor permission, with re-enrollment by students who have previously taken the course subject to the same proviso. Interested students should register and contact the English Department about submitting a brief writing sample on an assigned topic, to be turned in before the December break.

This is a workshop on Creative Nonfiction, which revolves around the writing of the participants, with additional readings in work by such writers as Gay Talese, Gary Smith, Jack Kerouac, Wil Haygood, Ernest Hemingway, Rosanne Cash, and Alice Munro.

It will focus on issues of characterization, narrative technique, selectivity of detail, and angle of perception, with special emphasis on the profile – in other words, how to make a real-life story come alive in the same way that fictional narrative can.

This is a workshop in which we are all interdependent on each other's efforts.

Three major pieces of 2500-3000 words will be required, along with the possibility of some brief additional exercises. Every student in the course will critique each of the other students' papers in writing, and the class will consist primarily of constructive discussion of the work. Class participation is the second most important element of the class (after the writing itself), so attendance is of the highest importance. Most of all, the workshop is a kind of shared enterprise in which a mutual enthusiasm for writing (irrespective of the level of achievement) should make it engaging – and fun – for all. The only prerequisite is a commitment to effort and honest self-expression.

 

English 202: Literature and Craft of Writing

 .01 MW 110-225 Calhoun Hall 104 Nancy Reisman

Claiming Forms, Naming Worlds: Contemporary Women Short Story Writers~ In this course, we'll explore the work of several influential 20th and 21st century women short story writers, and delve into their various aesthetics, influences, formal and thematic concerns.   We'll consider their particular and changing visions of the short story form, the distinctive elements of voice and style, varieties of characterization and notions of self, and the generational and cultural moments from which these writers compose. We’ll consider the ways these writers explore relationship, desire, and place within their works; and we’ll discuss investigations of power within their representations and their forms. Among the writers we'll read and discuss: Grace Paley, Alice Munro, Angela Carter, Lorrie Moore, Deborah Eisenberg, Lydia Davis, Aimee Bender, Louise Erdrich and several others. This course is designed for students with an interest in fiction writing and the architecture of fiction; no fiction-writing experience is required. Course projects will include both creative and analytical written work.

 

ENGL 204: Intermediate Fiction Workshop

.01 MW 110-225 calhoun Hall 104 Lorraine Lopez

This section of creative writing focuses on building and refining techniques of fiction writing, applying the full palette of elements, as related to the short story. Fiction writing is a craft, as well as a discipline and a process. This course is designed to help students hone skills, such as, but not limited to developing convincing characters, using perspective judiciously and consistently, proportioning summary (exposition) appropriately to scene, depicting imagery that resonates metaphorically, and applying significant detail to steep the reader in the physical world of the story. To better apprehend and practices such techniques and others, students will write two original short stories, complete three writing exercises, attend and respond to three literary events, and analyze published short stories to discuss structural and stylistic components that contribute to these stories’ overall success, in addition to reading text on craft and critiquing original work by peers on a weekly basis.                                                    

Note: Because enrollment to this course is by instructor approval based on a submission, all students will initially be placed on the waitlist. After the instructor selects the class members, those students will be admitted by the department. After joining the waitlist, all students should contact the instructor regarding the submission requirement. 

 

ENGL 205: Advanced Fiction Workshop

.01 T 310-600 Buttrick Hall 309 Earley

.02 T 1220-310 Stevenson6 Center 411 Nancy Reisman

This workshop is designed as a forum for experienced fiction writers to expand their visions, refine their aesthetics, and consider questions about fictional form and art-making. We’ll focus mainly on short story forms, revisit some essential matters of craft and technique, and consider significant questions about time, perception, and spatial relationships in stories, uses of defamiliarization, and the roles of silence, among other issues. It’s my hope that the workshop will foster experimentation as well as enable writers to further develop established strengths. The reading and writing for the course will be literary fiction generally based in realism (extending to surrealism, magical realism, meta-fiction). The core questions remain: What material, style, methods of storytelling interest you the most and how can you best access that material? What is the potential and what are the apparent boundaries of different fictional forms? The heart of this course is the workshop: the development and discussion of your creative work-in-progress. We’ll also read and discuss published stories and essays on craft. Experience in the English 204 (Intermediate) workshop or equivalent strongly recommended.

Instructor permission required. Interested students should register for the wait list: at the end of the course selection period, I’ll contact all wait-listed writers with guidelines for writing samples.

 

ENGL 207: Advanced Poetry Workshop

 .01 M 210-500 Buttrick Hall 304 Mark Jarman

This class is a poetry workshop. Each week we will discuss poems you have written. Also, the week you have a poem under discussion, you will prepare to talk about a poem in one of our texts. This poem can be related in some way to your own or simply be an example of a kind of poem you would like to write. This will give everybody a chance to read a good deal of contemporary poetry. Good poets are good readers. Writing and reading in this class will, I hope, be of equal interest. Eight original poems, (four of which will be discussed in class), plus a revision of each poem; four oral reports. The eight revisions, typed copies of the four oral reports, and responses to the visiting poets will be due as a final project or portfolio as the end of the semester. The poems not discussed in class must be shown to me before the final project is due.

ONCE YOU HAVE SIGNED UP FOR THE CLASS, SEND PROFESSOR JARMAN THREE (3) EXAMPLES OF YOUR POETRY. YOU MAY EMAIL THEM TO mark.jarman@vanderbilt.edu

 

ENGL 208B Representative British Writers, 1660-1900: 

.01 MWF 910-1000 Calhoun Hall 320 Gottfried, Roy

No writer writes in a vacuum. Moved not only by the surrounding events of the time and place, a writer is changed as well by previous authors and works. This course will examine the major periods of English literature from the Restoration to the Modern era in their cultural features and will study the major poets in engagement with their literary predecessors. The course provides an exposure to the famous works of the English tradition for the general student and provides a broad background for those students considering more specialized advanced studies.

.02 MW 235-350 Stevenson Center 1210 Humberto Garcia

The Empire of English Literature: In “The Literature of Knowledge and the Literature of Power” (1848), the English writer Thomas De Quincey argues that a truly representative survey of British literature teaches “nothing at all.” Unlike the literature of knowledge, which merely teaches, the literature of power moves us emotionally to grasp universal, enduring truths—justice, the good, the cosmos—in its respective national language, even when the nation that birthed these great writers has passed away. This course will test De Quincey’s hypothesis, reflecting on the criterion we use when we elect to linger over some literary works and bypass others. We will examine the presuppositions governing this survey course: What is literature and what makes it “British”? Why some literary works are judged as better than others? How do British writers represent (or resist) the scale, complexity, and anonymity of modern life? In order to answer these questions, we will focus on various genres that reflect on the growth and expansion of England as an imperial nation worthy of its own literary tradition; a nation which, having colonized more than 85% of the world by the twentieth century, was known as the empire where the sun never set. Our journey begins in the late seventeenth century with Aphra Behn and John Dryden, continues with Alexander Pope, Daniel Defoe, and William Wordsworth, and ends in the late Victorian era with Emily Bronte and Rudyard Kipling.

 

ENGL 210: Shakespeare: Representative Selections

 

 .01 MW 845-1000 Calhoun Hall 218 King

Shakespeare's Afterlife: Without Shakespeare, much of the English language (not to mention Hollywood) would cease to exist. In particular, his dramatic texts continue to influence our entertainment in the form of adaptations. Yet when we encounter these adaptations, we must also consider the following: At what point does Shakespeare stop being Shakespeare? And, conversely, what is essentially Shakespeare? Is, for instance, Macbeth still Macbeth when the text is rewritten, renamed, and performed by prisoners and staff in Northern Ireland’s notorious Maghaberry Prison in the case of Mickey B? Finally, what might these revisions reveal about the original text (and our anxieties concerning it)?

Such questions will govern our classroom discussions as we read thirteen plays that represent Shakespeare’s comedies, tragedies, and histories as well as his “problem plays.” While we will explore these plays in relation to the historical-cultural context that gave rise to them, we will also take a decidedly “forward” look. That is to say, we will examine the ways in which Shakespeare’s texts reemerge in later centuries as cartoons, literature, and, of course, film.

  Satisfies pre-1800 literature requirement for major

 

ENGL 211: Representative American Writers

.01 MWF 110-200 Calhoun Hall 203 Gabriel Briggs

This course will cover the rise of the novel in the United States from the end of the revolutionary period to the 1850s. We will read the work of authors who dominate American literary history, such as Charles Brockden Brown, James Fenimore Cooper, and Herman Melville, but we will also study additional writers who challenge conventional wisdom, and help us to imagine alternative literary histories in the U.S. In our reading, we will focus on two related questions: how does the novel capture the social and political pressures of a particular historical moment? Where is the line between fiction and history, dreams and reality? The novels we will examine cut across several literary genres, including the Sentimental Novel, the American Gothic, and the Historical Romance, and we will attempt both to understand and to theorize the relationship between literary and historical writing.

 

ENGL 213W: Literature of the American Civil War
 

 

01 MW 110-225 Calhoun Hall 117 Dicker

In this class, we will examine the literature of the American Civil War. The main goal of the course is to read a substantial selection of the most important and influential literature written about the war.  Our focus will be on longer fiction, but we will also discuss short stories, poems, and films. We will begin by using Harriet Beecher Stowe’s Uncle Tom’s Cabin as a way to understand the views about race and slavery that led to the union’s collapse. Although we will concentrate on texts produced around the time of the conflict (Miss Ravenel’s Conversion, Hospital Sketches, and The Gates Ajar), we will also read literature produced well after the war’s end (The Red Badge of Courage, The Unvanquished, and Jubilee). These texts will help us to make sense of the war, its origins, and its impact not just on those living during the nineteenth century but on those interested in its meaning in the present day.  Class sessions will alternate between lecture, discussion, and small-group activity.  Work for the class will include reading assignments, response papers, discussion leading, essays, and a final exam.

 

ENGL 221: Medieval Literature

 

.01 TR 110-225 Calhoun Hall 117 Plummer 

This course introduces the student to the chief literary forms and cultural issues of the late 13th through the 15th centuries in England. We learn Middle English while reading chronicles, saints= lives, drama, romance, lyrics, and allegory, exploring the alterity and modernity of medieval culture, what we have in common with the period and how we differ from it. No previous experience with medieval studies is required or expected. Graded work includes a midterm and final exam, and a paper of 8-10 pages.

Satisfies pre-1800 literature requirement for major

 

ENGL 230, "The Eighteenth-Century English Novel":

.01 TR 400-515 Calhoun Hall 104  Andrea Hearn

This course will introduce students not only to several major novelists of the long English eighteenth century in their significant social, cultural, and political contexts, but also to a number of readings in our discipline of the novel’s “rise” as a literary form and phenomenon. Texts are likely to include Defoe’s Moll Flanders, Richardson’s Pamela (or selections from Clarissa), Fielding’s Jonathan Wild, Sterne’s Sentimental Journey, Burney’s Evelina, and Austen’s Northanger Abbey.

  Satisfies pre-1800 literature requirement for major

 

ENGL 232A: Twentieth-Century American Novel

 

 .01 TR 110-225 Calhoun Hall 337 Bell

 

ENGL 237W: World Literature, Modern

.01 TR 235-350 Buttrick 123 Julia Fesmire

This course familiarizes students with the global context of the Western tradition, as well as with the Western tradition in literature and culture, seventeenth century to the present.  Texts include:  Marlowe’s Dr. Faustus, Molière’s Don Juan, Pope’s The Rape of the Lock and other poems, Byron’s Don Juan, Pushkin’s Eugene Onegin, Flaubert’s Madame Bovary, Rostand’s Cyrano de Bergerac, Woolf’s  A Room of One’s Own, Bulgakov’s The Master and Margarita, McEwan’s Atonement, Stoppard’s Arcadia, Roy’s The God of Small Things.

 

ENGL 248: Sixteenth Century

.01 MW 235-350 Calhoun Hall 219 Lynn Enterline

Partly due to the power of his way of collecting the scattered tales of Greco-Roman mythology into “the semblance of a unified body,” and partly due to the Roman poet’s important place in the humanist educational platform, Ovid was one of the ancient poets whose work had the greatest impact on Renaissance art and literature.  Many of his stories – Orpheus’s voice, able to persuade even the god of death to relent; Narcissus’s deadly encounter with his mirror; Arachne’s tapestry of the gods’ violent intervention in the human world; the power of Medusa, able to turn men to stone; Pygmalion’s dream of a statue come to life – continue to surface in later periods and other forms of art as well. But this seminar aims to take the measure of Ovid’s literary impact by way of a broad survey of his presence in the poetry and drama of Elizabethan England.  “The loves of the gods” inhabit most of the period’s important literary forms – dramatic as well as lyric, narrative, allegorical, and epic poetry. We will follow the many ways that Ovid’s (often violent) representations of desire and bodily transformation play out in the Elizabethan literary imagination.  Authors range from the well known (Wyatt, Shakespeare, Marlowe, Donne, Spenser, Sidney) to the lesser known (Thomas Lodge, John Marston, Thomas Heywood, John Lyly) so that students become acquainted with a wide range of modes in 16th century writing.  Topics include: Elizabethan classicism and masculinity; education and the art of imitation; theatrical cross-dressing and poetic cross-voicing; authorship and desire; language and trauma; the vexed relationship between identity and embodiment.

  Satisfies pre-1800 literature requirement for major

 

ENGL 252A: Restoration and the Eighteenth Century

.01 TR 235-350 TBA Scott Juengel

“Women Writers and Public Life in the Long Eighteenth Century” Spanning from Aphra Behn to Anne Brontë, this course considers the influence of women in the eighteenth-century literary and intellectual marketplace. The syllabus will survey of a range of genres, many of which were consolidating into their distinctly “modern” forms (e.g. the novel, satire, periodical essay, autobiography), but we will focus exclusively on the literary productions of women and the reformation of the public sphere. Many of the figures we attend to were either instrumental in crafting new literary forms or successfully expanded the expressive potential of existing genres through formal experimentation: similarly, a number of the works we will read are specifically concerned with thematizing the question of public life, while also revising the rules governing the private, or domestic, sphere. The eighteenth-century is the first great age of the female writer and our deliberations will begin with Aphra Behn, of whom Virginia Woolf in A Room of One’s Own wrote, “All women together ought to let flowers fall upon the tomb of Aphra Behn, for it was she who earned them the right to speak their minds.”

Texts likely chosen from among the following: Behn, The Rover and Love-Letters Between a Nobleman and His Sister; Haywood, Fantomina and selections from The Female Spectator; Montagu, Turkish Embassy Letters;Collier, selections from An Essay on the Art of Ingeniously Tormenting;Scott, A Description of Millenium Hall; Burney, Evelina; Wollstonecraft, Vindications of the Rights of Woman; Hays, Memoirs of Emma Courtney;Edgeworth, Belinda; Austen, Northanger Abbey or Emma; Prince, The History of Mary Prince;Brontë, The Tenant of Wildfell Hall and poetry by Finch, Barbauld, Smith, Robinson and others.

  Satisfies pre-1800 literature requirement for major

 

ENGL 254A: The Romantic Period

.01 TR 1100-1215 Wilson Hall 113 Scott Juengel

“Jane Austen and the Age of Revolution” The Marxist critic Raymond Williams once famously wrote, “It is a truth universally acknowledged, that Jane Austen chose to ignore the decisive historical events of her time. Where, it is still asked, are the Napoleonic wars: the real current of history?” This course is designed to offer an antidote to this familiar portrait of Austen-the-miniaturist, the artist content to abstain from the larger world either out of modesty or indifference. The question of Austen’s worldliness will serve as a governing principle for a semester-long investigation into the relationship between the local and the global, the domestic and cosmopolitan, the individual and the world. But this is not explicitly a course on Jane Austen: rather, the syllabus will use a selection of Austen’s fictions as anchoring texts around which a motivated survey of romanticism and revolution will be organized. Specifically, Northanger Abbey will initiate a discussion of the politics of the imagination so central to revolutionary movements; Mansfield Park serves as an intervention into the moral economies of freedom, captivity, and human rights; and Persuasion will allow us to think about the interplay between individual and world-historical events. In addition to the three Austen novels, figures encountered are likely to include Wordsworth, Coleridge, Rousseau, Blake, Godwin, Wollstonecraft, Equiano, Kant, Barbauld, and the Shelleys.

 

ENGL 256: Modern British and American Poetry: Yeats to Auden

 .01 TR 935-1050 Buttrick Hall 305 Mark Jarman

This course will consider those modern poets, writing in English, primarily between 1900 and 1950, who left the strongest imprint on the poetry of their own time and subsequently:  W. B. Yeats, T. S. Eliot, Ezra Pound, William Carlos Williams, Marianne Moore, and Wallace Stevens.  In the first half of the 20th century, each of these poets created a unique style which embodied his or her personal vision of the poet and the modern world.  All but Yeats, who was Irish, were Americans. Yeats, despite living and working many years in London, was strongly attached to his childhood home in County Sligo, and played a critical role in the formation of modern Irish literature and culture. Eliot, born and raised in St. Louis, Missouri, and Pound, born in Idaho and raised in Pennsylvania, were expatriates, living in London in Eliot’s case, and in Pound’s case, in London, Paris, and Italy. Eliot became an English citizen and is claimed by both the U.S. and England. Williams lived and worked as a doctor in the place of his birth, Rutherford, New Jersey. Marianne Moore lived most of her life in New York City, working for a time at the New York Public Library. Wallace Stevens was an insurance executive in Hartford, Connecticut. We will consider these poets’ association with place, culture, society, and the history of their times. For all of them, the art of poetry was foremost. Class will consist of an ongoing discussion of their poems and, where relevant, their prose. Two papers, a final, homework assignments throughout the semester.

 

ENGL 259: Digital Media

 

.01 W 310-600 First Amendment Center The Classroom K.Paulson

Topic: This course will explore the transformational impact of digital and social media on literature, journalism, the arts and intellectual property, and offer instruction on writing well and presentation for online audiences.

The course will cover the advent and impact of digital media; the transformative role of Napster, Google and YouTube; the implications of the digital revolution for the arts, music and journalism and the ethics of contemporary  communications, and will also offer hands-on opportunities to develop skills writing for digital media and interactive audiences.

 

ENGL 263: African American Literature

.01 TR 235-335 Calhoun 117 Spillers

This course is designed to provide an introduction to the study of the literature produced by African-American writers in the social, historical, and political context of the United States; we begin this literary survey with nineteenth-century narratives written by ex-enslaved subjects during the years that immediately precede the U.S. Civil War and go on from there to examine writing and its creative products across the genres of fiction, poetry, and social critique. Starting with the narratives of Frederick Douglass and Harriet Jacobs, we will investigate writings by W.E.B.DuBois, the practitioners of the Harlem Renaissance, select instances of the generation of black writers poised between WWII and the 1960’s, writers of the Black Arts Movement, between the 1960s and the 1980s, ending with fiction produced by contemporary writers, among them, Toni Morrison and David Bradley. To the extent that time allows, we will also interrogate some of the newer movements in speculative fiction, such as select writings by Samuel Delany and Octavia Butler.

 Satisfies ethnic-non-western literature major and minor requirement

ENGL 263W: African American Literature

.01 MWF 1110-1200 Benson Hall 200 Gabriel Briggs

This course is a survey of African-American Literature that begins with Slave Narratives and ends with Contemporary Thought. As much as the seminar will provide students with an overview of the prominent periods in African-American Literature, it is also a seminar in developing the students’ general critical skills. To that end, the seminar will introduce students to contemporary theoretical and critical models that have been instrumental in revising African-American literary history (e.g. critical race theory). Students will work toward developing strategies for positioning authors and texts within specific cultural, historical, and theoretical contexts. As such, students should be willing to experiment with new ways of reading literary and cultural texts. Among the authors we will read are Harriet Jacobs, Richard Wright, and Toni Morrison.

Satisfies ethnic-non-western literature major and minor requirement

 

ENGL 265: Film and Modernism

.01 MWF 210-300 Buttrick Hall 102 Professor Girgus

The course focuses on the relationship of film to the forces and movements that define and impel modernism, including changes regarding sexuality and gender, ethics, belief, identity, values, and lifestyles. Readings will include classics of literary modernism and the modern tradition. We will relate these readings to the cinema of modernism from a variety of national film traditions, including Italian, French, British, Russian, Swedish, American, and other cultures. The course will structure this learning and viewing experience in terms of the personal quest in modernity for belief and commitment. We will examine how film originated with the modernist movement and grew to maturity with the great modernists of art, literature, and philosophy.

 Note: Students will view one film per week at scheduled times on Tuesdays 4 pm, Wednesdays 6 pm, or Sundays

 

ENGL 269: Film Studies: Allen, Scorsese, and Eastwood: Conflict and Transformation

.01 T 310-600 Buttrick Hall 103 Professor Girgus

The course will offer close readings of major films by three of America’s greatest current directors who have profoundly influenced modern film and contemporary culture and values. All three directors have changed our understanding and appreciation of film as art and cultural product. They have directed modern masterpieces as cinematic scenes of cultural engagement, conflict, and transformation. Leaders in developing the creative potential of film art, these directors emphasize certain themes in their work, including changing views of masculinity, the revolution in sexual and gender relationships, violence in contemporary culture, ethnic and racial identities and tensions, the search for meaning and belief, irony and humor.

 Note: Weekly film viewings Tuesdays 4 pm, Wednesdays 6 pm, or Sundays.

 

ENGL 271: Caribbean Literatures

.01 TR 110-225 Buttrick Hall 306 Vera M. Kutzinski

In glossy tourist brochures, the Caribbean islands are typically portrayed as a tourist paradise made up of tropical beaches, cocktails, and breathtaking sunsets. But what is life like for people who actually live there, the so-called natives? What do these islands look like to them? What does it mean to be, say, Cuban, Jamaican, Trinidadian, Guadeloupian, Grenadian, Barbadian, Haitian, or Dominican? Are there any shared sensibilities among those of African, East Indian, European, or Chinese descent? How do differences in gender and sexuality affect the lives of groups and individuals? Is the Caribbean a culturally unified space, or is it hopelessly fragmented due to it colonial histories? In this course we will address these and related questions, most of which come down to questions about migration, forced and voluntary, and question about cultural identity, imposed or imaginative constructed. The novelists and poets whose work we will analyze hail from different parts of the Caribbean, even if the majority of them live in exile in Britain, the USA, or Canada—which of course poses the question of how we as readers imagine not only the Caribbean but also a Caribbean writer.

Readings: Robert Antoni, Carnival (2005); Kamau Brathwaite, The Arrivants;Erna Brodber, Louisiana (1994); Alejo Carpentier, The Kingdom of This World (1959); Michelle Cliff, No Telephone to Heaven (1987); Maryse Condé, I, Tituba, Black Witch of Salem (1992); Edwidge Danticat, The Farming of Bones (1998); Nalo Hopkinson, Midnight Robber (2000); Jamaica Kincaid, A Small Place (1988); Earl Lovelace, The Dragon Can’t Dance (1979); Shani Mootoo, Cereus Blooms at Night (1996); Patricia Powell, The Pagoda (1998).

Writing Requirements: weekly 500-word response papers and two 1,500-1,700-word papers.

Satisfies ethnic-non-western literature major and minor requirement

 

ENGL 272: Movements in Literature - Renaissance Revenge Tragedy

 .01 TR 400-515 Calhoun Hall 117 Schwarz

In 1605, Francis Bacon called revenge “a kind of wild justice.” Here are a few scenes that illustrate his point:
·         A man bursts into a banquet, with the heart of his lover impaled on his dagger.
·         A duke, already poisoned, dies while watching his wife seduce his son.
·         A ruler pauses in mid-conspiracy to announce that he is the most lecherous, traitorous, and corrupt man in the kingdom.
Renaissance revenge tragedies are extravagantly violent, explicitly sexual, and closely tied to political critique. They are also
written and performed in a time of aggressive state-sponsored censorship, when "going public" in the wrong way could result
in a loss of freedon, body parts, or life. What is the purpose of these plays, and how might we explain their wild popularity,
their cultural impact, and the fact that they could appear on stage at all?
In this course we will consider the preoccupation with revenge in Renaissance drama. We will use the figure of the revenger 
to address a range of issues: the individual subject as an agent and a victim of violence; the close links between revenge and
sexuality; the implications of revenge for the political state; the particular theatricality of revenge plots; and the connections
between revenge and other kinds of ethical, erotic, or social transgression.
Readings: plays by John Ford, Thomas Heywood, Ben Jonson, Thomas Kyd, Christopher Marlowe, Thomas Middleton, William 
Shakespeare, and John Webster.
 Requirements: participation in class discussions; a group presentation; a short paper related to the presentation; and a final paper.

Satisfies pre-1800 literature requirement for major

ENGL 272:The World Reaches Out: New Perspectives on the Harlem Renaissance

.02 MW 1010-1125 Calhoun Hall 219 Ifeoma Nwankwo

This course will examine film, literature, music, newspapers, and personal correspondence produced in the U.S. and the Caribbean during this key moment. Along the way, students will gain new perspectives on this distinctive era often thought to be one of the most pivotal in the American cultural history. During this period, young Black writers, musicians, workers, and soldiers from New York as well as from the U.S. South and the Caribbean, many calling themselves “New Negroes,” birthed exciting innovations in literature, popular music, film, dance, business, and politics. They showed and showed off what they viewed as the inherent richness and modernity of their cultures. As they did so, they asked key questions about how Black culture should be understood and should be presented in the public sphere.

We will focus on finding answers to these crucial questions: What is “real” Black culture? Is it the culture of the everyday people or that of the “talented tenth?” Should only “positive” representations of Black culture and life be publicly aired? Who has the right to decide that and to define a “positive” image? What did Harlem Renaissance era writers, musicians, and intellectuals have to say about these issues? How were their views similar to or different from those of the average African American or even from each other? Are their views still valid today?

By closely examining key literary texts, songs, films, newspapers, and other direct-from-the-source materials from this era, we will explore these questions and gain insight into these new ideas about Caribbean and African American culture and identity as well as into their impact on and relevance for today’s debates about cultural authenticity, popular culture, and the most effective ways bring about political change.

Satisfies ethnic-non-western literature major and minor requirement

  ENGL 272: Movements in Literature - America 1900: New Century Novel

.03 TR 235-350 Buttrick Hall 310 Cecelia Tichi

America 1900: New Century, New Novels  The opening years of the twentieth century saw U.S. writers seize the moment to celebrate and critique their transcontinental nation of industrial might,  class and racial conflict, feminist assertion, imperial outreach and unprecedented consumerism. Such novelists as Theodore Dreiser, Willa Cather, Edith Wharton, and Frank Norris (among others) faced the challenge to map America from its urban high-rise “skyscrapers” and tenements to the farms and ranches of the “heartland” and the West. Their “big” novels set the terms of what has been called “The American Century.”

 

ENGL 274 Major Figures in Literature: Shakespeare and Literary Theory

.01 MW 110-225 Calhoun Hall 219 Lynn Enterline

“Shakespeare and Literary Theory” Whether as author or cultural object, “Shakespeare” attracts vigorous speculation and debate among literary critics and cultural theorists. Beginning with several texts of ancient and renaissance literary “theory” that broach the kinds of questions about art, language, and culture with which Shakespeare was familiar – and that emerge as vital questions in his own texts – the class will move forward to read a few important works of contemporary literary criticism and theory, each of which engage directly with Shakespeare’s texts and characters. The seminar is organized in a way that juxtaposes Shakespeare’s most influential poems and plays with theoretical speculation – from Saint Augustine’s thoughts about language and desire and Sir Philip Sidney’s Defence of Poesy to such modern thinkers as Sigmund Freud, William Empson, Rene Girard, Stanley Cavell, Jonathan Dollimore, and Eve Kosofsky Sedgwick. Our aim will be to understand how these writers’ own engagement with Shakespeare’s texts gave rise to modes of thought and critique that are still palpable in current literary critical practice.   The texts we will first read closely and then alongside such theoretical writing will be Hamlet, Merchant of Venice, Othello, The Winter’s Tale, the sonnets, and The Rape of Lucrece. No knowledge of literary theory is presumed nor is this a course about various “schools” of theory. Rather, the seminar will proceed by way of close, sustained engagement with a few influential Shakespearean texts that play an important role in the production of theories about literature, culture, symbolic action, gender, desire, sexuality, and dissidence.

 Note: Departmental Honors Seminar; 3.4 cum GPA required.

Satisfies pre-1800 literature requirement for major

 

ENGL 274. “Oscar Wilde and the 1890s”

.02 TR 110-225 Calhoun 203 Rachel Teukolsky

“I was a man who stood in symbolic relations to the art and culture of my age.” So wrote Oscar Wilde in 1897, from the confinement of a prison cell. Wilde’s career offers a revealing glimpse into the world of late-Victorian culture and society—from his roots in Ireland, to his ascent in London society as a celebrated wit and playwright, to his stunning arrest and imprisonment for “acts of gross indecency.” This course will examine Wilde’s writings within the context of the last decade of the nineteenth century, when anxieties about the fate of British culture and empire spurred a kind of conservative hysteria, along with the subversive counter-culture known as “decadence.” Texts will likely include Wilde’s poetry, essays on art, aesthetics, and socialism, his play The Importance of Being Earnest,and his gothic novel The Picture of Dorian Gray. We will also consider his decadent play Salomé, published in book form with illustrations by Aubrey Beardsley and banned by London censors before it could make it to the Victorian stage. Other authors and artists will help us to understand the rebellious art-culture of the 1890s: Walter Pater, D. G. Rossetti, Charles Baudelaire, Arthur Symons, James McNeill Whistler, George Egerton, Amy Levy, and Michael Field, among others.

ENGL 274W: Major Figures in Literature - Faulkner

 

.01 TR 935-1050 Calhoun Hall 218 Bell, Kreyling

 

ENGL 275: Latina/o American Literature

.01 TR 1100-1215 Calhoun Hall 219 Lorraine Lopez

Latino literature is American literature produced by writers inculcated in the US experience, self-identifying as Latinos and writing in English. This course will examine this enduring and dynamic literature that crosses and re-crosses borders constructed by geography, linguistics, class, race, and gender. To this end, we will read, discuss, present, and write on prose and poetry by authors of Mexican, Cuban, Dominican, and Puerto Rican descent who live and write in the United States. The course is designed to accommodate a range of voices in an historical progression to fill in this vital but often overlooked component of our national discourse. The literary models under investigation will be placed within a cultural and historical context in order to provide a sense of the continuities of American literature within the diversity.

Satisfies ethnic-non-western literature major and minor requirement

 

ENGL 278. “Colonial and Post-Colonial Literature” HONORS

.01 TR 235-350 Buttrick Hall 306 Rachel Teukolsky

What is the relationship between literature and politics? The question feels like an urgent one when we consider that the history of English literature was shaped by the vast expansion of the British empire, whose conquests resulted in the English language being spoken and written in countries around the world. In this course, we will explore how literature responded to the complex conditions of colonialism and its aftermath. We will ask the following questions: how do colonial and postcolonial writers define notions of the self, the world, and the other? How do they position themselves in relation to the dominant, imperial language? More broadly, how do fictional texts represent history? What is a “nation” and how does literature construct or dismantle this idea? What are some of the concepts scholars have used to account for the complex cultural dynamics of imperialism—concepts such as hybridity, diaspora, and migration? How do literary forms enact political ideas? Geographical regions of focus in the course will likely include Ireland, India, the British-occupied Caribbean islands, Nigeria, and South Africa. Authors might include Charlotte Brontë, Joseph Conrad, James Joyce, Seamus Heaney, Jean Rhys, V.S. Naipaul, Arundhati Roy, J.M. Coetzee, Edward Said, Frantz Fanon, Jamaica Kincaid, Derek Walcott, Buci Emecheta, and Wole Soyinka.

 Note: Departmental honors seminar;3.4 cumulative GPA require, Satisfies ethnic-non-western literature major and minor requirement

 

ENGL 280 / History 291 Workshop in History and English: Pestilence and Poetry—The 14th Century

.01 TR 935-1050 Calhoun Hall 203  Team Taught by William Caferro (History) and John Plummer (English)

The course will examine literature and society in fourteenth century Europe. It will look specifically at how the events of the “troubled” fourteenth century (e.g., the Black Death, the 100 Years’ War, the Peasants’ Uprising) affected literature and vice versa. The format will be lecture and discussion.     Readings will include primary historical texts as well as literature, including selections from Dante, Boccaccio, Chaucer, and Langland. There will be two papers, a midterm, a final and an in-class presentation.

  Satisfies pre-1800 literature requirement for major

 

ENGL 282: The Bible in Literature

.01 MWF 1110-1200 Calhoun Hall 204 Gottfried

Satisfies pre-1800 literature requirement for major

ENGL 287. Investigative Topics in America: Telling The Story of Climate Change: Exploring Environmental Crisis and Innovative Breakthrough

.01 W 310-500 Buttrick Hall 305 Amanda Little

How to tell stories of environmental change and innovation in America as we grapple with global warming and work to build a sustainable future.  

Taught by award-winning environmental journalist who has written for The New York Times, Vanity Fair, Rolling Stone, and Outside Magazine, and authored Power Trip: The Story of America’s Love Affair With Energy, this course focuses on one of the most important global challenges of our time. Climate change presents both a crisis and an opportunity: As warming temperatures bring on severe ecological challenges, innovators are responding with new discoveries in renewable energy, electric cars, smart homes, and other pivotal breakthroughs. This course will explore what’s going wrong, what’s going right, and the thrill and challenge of documenting historic change. Readings will include selections from essential environmental writings of the last half-century; seminal present-day texts by Thomas Friedman, Bill McKibben, Amory Lovins, and Elizabeth Kolbert; up-to-the-minute opinion writing and investigative journalism from publications ranging from HuffingtonPost.com to National Geographic and The Wall Street Journal.

The professor has traveled from deepsea oil rigs into the guts of the electricity grid, from Kansas cornfields into the catacombs of the Pentagon, to investigate America’s changing energy landscape.  Students will attempt their own high-adventure investigative journalism in this course—reporting local stories that document the effects of climate change and the emerging green economy. We will discuss your pieces in class and the instructor will critique your writing in private conferences.

 

ENGL 288 01 – Special Topics: --Contemporary American Poetry.

.01 MW 110-225 Buttrick Hall 305 Rick Hilles

The objective of this course is to provide an overview of the major trends, topics, and techniques of American poetry since World War II, as well as an introduction to theories and critical methodologies that have arisen to make sense of the richly diverse varieties of poetry being written in this period. The Vintage Book of Contemporary American Poetry will allow us to survey key poems by numerous authors, including Gwendolyn Brooks, Robert Lowell, Allen Ginsberg, Adrienne Rich, and Frank O’Hara. We shall also study three full careers, those of Elizabeth Bishop, Sylvia Plath, and W.S. Merwin. In addition, we will examine recent volumes by younger poets: Tracy K. Smith, Terrance Hayes, and Natasha Tretheway. Each student will deliver an oral report, write two papers and take one final exam. [Subject to change.]

ENGL 288W: Special Topics in English and American Literature: Women Singers and the Rise of Popular Culture—from Bessie Smith to Adele

 

.02 TR 1100-1215 Calhoun Hall 423 Spillers

This course is devoted to the study of transatlantic popular culture, especially that of the United States, as it grows from the era of recorded sound to the present. The texts for the course will be drawn from the discographies of female vocalists in the age of mechanical reproduction, from Bessie Smith, one of the earliest performers of modern American music to be captured by recorded sound, to Aretha Franklin at mid-century and the cross-over appeal of Rhythm and Blues, to contemporary vocalists in today’s global, transcultural context, including Beyonce and Adele. Focusing attention on 12 singers, who meld in their performance various traditions of American popular music, i.e., blues, spirituals, gospel, jazz, R&B, soul, funk, and rap, “Transatlantic Traffic” takes up the following questions: 1) What is the relationship between women vocalists and the rise of “popular culture”? 2) How might we describe the moments of transition between eras of female vocalizing? 3) Why is it true, if you agree with the premise, that modern American music defines a key aspect of national identity? 4) What is “soul,” and why do you think it has travelled so successfully across national and cultural borders?  We hope that these questions, as they generate others, will yield a rich supply of topics to address in critical writing that fulfills the objectives of the course

 

Satisfies ethnic-non-western literature major and minor requirement

ENGL 288: Special Topics: Representing Paradise, Redeeming Hell: The Caribbean in Film, Literature, and Digital Media

.03 MW 110-225 Wilson Hall 121 Ifeoma Nwankwo

What comes to mind when you think of the Caribbean? What sorts of images of these countries/communities have you seen on TV, in advertisements, or in feature films? How are they similar to or different from each other? Do there seem to be particular characteristics that are frequently associated with particular countries in the region (e.g. Jamaica, Haiti) and/or their people?

In this course, we will explore the portrayal and presence of the Caribbean in film and television, literature, and digital media. This will include material from the U.S. as well as from the Caribbean. We will delve into texts as varied as ads for “Caribbean” rum, novels, cinematic classics like To Have and Have Not (starring Humphrey Bogart and Lauren Bacall), and contemporary music videos with the goal of better understanding what these images tell us about the Caribbean as well as about ourselves, and about the complexities of what it means to be an American. We will then build on our analyses of the images as we to explore the nature of U.S. Americans’ material engagements with the region, specifically of their interactions with the region as tourists.

Importantly, in this course students with be provided with the tools, guidance, and encouragement they need in order to create their own multimedia and/or print research projects on the topic, foregrounding their own perspectives, while also learning how to incorporate primary and secondary source material uncovered through research.

 Satisfies ethnic-non-western literature major and minor requirement

ENGL 288W: Writing for an Endangered World:  Representative US Writers Tackle Sustainability

.04 MW 845-1000 Buttrick Hall 201 Dana Nelson

More and more green ecologists and ecocritics argue that “sustainability” is not simply a question of “saving nature”—indeed, the very idea of “nature” might be part of the problem. Rather, they argue that questions of nature are deeply embedded in culture and that the attitudes that imperil our environment (like our separateness from the environment, from non-human life, and even ideals like individualism) also endanger our corporate well-being: our commonwealth.

This course will consider these theoretical questions as we study how major US writers in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries have taken them up in their fiction and non-fiction.  As we analyze literary works of fiction and non-fiction, we’ll consider the relation of writing and genre to a variety of sustainability projects, and specifically, the relation of writing to action.  What makes writing about sustainability galvanizing?  What makes it enervating?  Finally, we’ll consider our own relationship to questions of social and environmental sustainability.  Why are you in this class?  What will you take away?  What kind of writing and activist projects will you develop to solidify and enact your own commitments to sustainability?

ENGL 288.06: Special Topics: Studies in the Long Poem

.06 M 410-640 Calhoun Hall 219 Colin Dayan

This is a seminar that focuses on the once-de rigueur  task of close reading.  Reading will be intensive rather than extensive, and time spent writing will probably equal that spent reading. The seminar will veer toward a “workshop” approach, in which a few  students (depending on class size) each week will post on OAK their explications. These writings will be the basis of our discussion. (Let me add:  we will also have a great deal of fun.)

The long poem—or what some call “the poetic sequence”—is a hybrid or heterogeneous genre, described by some as a loose and baggy mixture of poetry and prose or a compound of lyric “immediacy” and epic “inclusiveness.”  We will discuss the odd genre-marriage of the form, as well as seek to understand what happens when history becomes part of poetry, a division that was not always as stark as we would like to think.  Ezra Pound recognized this when he thought of the epic as a long poem that “contained history.”  Another major consideration is the nature of the poetic “I” when tackling this discontinuous or fragmented form.

If you choose to take this class, you must know that participation is absolutely essential.  We will be concentrating on T.S. Eliot, Ezra Pound, William Carlos Williams, Adrienne Rich, Derek Walcott, and Susan Howe, after our Whitman introduction. But I encourage participants to consider – if your time permits – the poetry of Hart Crane (The Bridge), Wallace Stevens (Auroras of Autumn), Charles Olson (Maximus),  Jorie Graham (Materialism and Place: New Poems), and Anne Carson (Autobiography of Red).  I will be available to talk with you about any other poets that you would like to study and write about.

 

ENGL 290B: Honors Thesis

.01 T 700-930 Benson Hall 200 Wollaeger

 

Spring 2013 dual-listed courses that may be counted toward the major:

ASIA 200W Coming of Age in Asia

MW 400-515 Buttrick Hall 301 Ben Tran

In the European Bildungsroman (or coming-of-age novel), young protagonists come of age, learning the ways of the world psychologically, socially, and morally.  Youth in this genre represents a struggle between self-determination and the processes of socialization.  It symbolizes modern society’s demands and uncertainties, as well as modernity’s potential for mobility and instability.  This course will examine how the Bildungsroman takes on different meanings in Asian literatures.  We will read coming-of-age works that address and represent the politics of gender, nationalism, and language within the frameworks of modernity andcolonialism.  The class will look at the experiences of young men and women in different socio-historical contexts that range from Indonesia to Burma.  We will also turn our attention to individuals who—traveling to urban centers, foreign countries, and ancestral lands—must grapple with geographical displacement.

Literary texts will include:

Dumb Luck, Vu Trong Phung

The Lover, Marguerite Duras

This Earth of Mankind, Pramoedya Ananta Toer

Sightseeing, Rattawut Lapcharoensap

Not Out of Hate, Ma Ma Lay

*Besides these primary texts, reading assignments will also compromise of secondary reading material or writings about the genre of the novel, particularly the Bildungsroman.  These materials will be posted on OAK.

 Satisfies ethnic-non-western literature major and minor requirement

 

ASIA 251 The "Third World" and Literature

MW 110-225 Buttrick Hall 301 Ben Tran

This course critically examines the category of “Third World” literature, studying how national literatures and cultures function as the basis of the Third World model.  We will begin by studying the early use of “Third World” at the Asian-African Conference (1955) in Bandung, Indonesia, where the term was employed by decolonizing nations in opposition to emerging, imperial superpowers: the United States and the Soviet Union.  The class will then trace the shifting meanings and connotations of the term from its decolonizing and nationalistic contexts to our present moment, when models of transnationalism and the processes of globalization render the category of “Third World”anachronistic.  This will also be an occasion to explore the altered political and cultural relationships, stemming from economic disparity, between Asia and Africa today.  The course will be structured around the following topics: Third World Internationalism and the Bandung movement, nationalist culture and consciousness, Third World Feminism, and “Third World” today.

 Satisfies ethnic-non-western literature major and minor requirement

FILM 288: Regarding Animals


Team taught by Professors Colin Dayan and Jennifer Fay


Scientists (anthropologists, ethnologists, primatologist) and humanists (philosophers, creative writers, filmmakers, literary critics, and theorists) have long recognized our physical, behavioral, and even psychological kinship with non-human animals. Yet in our laws and daily practices we make hard categorical distinctions between the two that effect not only how we treat non-human animals but in how we live with each other as animals. This course is interested in how the categories of human and animal are figured and given representational form in film and literature as read through philosophy and ethics, anthropology and law. We ask how these different media and disciplinary approaches can help us to better understand what it means to share a household, a city, a country, and a planet with other species. This is neither a history of human-animal relations nor an exhaustive survey of animal studies; nor it is a polemic on animal rights. It is rather a series of thematically driven meditations:

  • How might different media give us access to a non-human experience? Is it possible for humans to see and hear the world outside the frame human intelligibility?
  • How might experimental cinemas and literatures unsettle the uniqueness of human being?
  • How may we understand the connection between “natural” history and “human” history?
  • By what logic does the notion of “humane care” sometimes veil systematic extermination?
  • What are the implications of animal rights for human rights, and vice versa?
  • What are the limits to comparing humans and animals, especially in matters of ethical treatment and historical responsibility?

 

THTR 206w: Contemporary Drama and Performance Criticism

Elizabeth Essin

This course examines current artistic and cultural trends in dramatic literature and theatrical production, with specific attention to contemporary U.S. performance. Through a series of critical readings, class discussions, and writing exercises, students will acquire a range of stylistic and theoretical approaches to analyzing and writing about the contemporary stage and its literature. By reading contemporary drama and attending a variety of productions in and around Nashville, students will become familiar with the diverse perspectives of today’s theatre artists; they will also forge connections with local arts communities and reflect on the ability of live performance to shape the city’s cultural identity. In-class writing workshops will encourage peer-to-peer criticism and revision. Assignments will prompt students to share their criticism through multiple mediums for a diverse public audience. As a classroom community, we will examine the relevance of the various trends we encounter against our own cultural circumstances, asking: “Why is this performance/text meaningful to audiences today?” and “How does it help us understand who we are and where we live?”

Course Reading:

  • A selection of plays and musicals, possibly including:
    • The Columnist by David Auburn
    • One Man, Two Guvnors by Richard Bean
    • Detroit by Lisa D’Amour
    • 4000 Miles by Amy Herzog
    • Bloody, Bloody Andrew Jackson by Alex Timbers and Michael Friedman
    • Ruined by Lynn Nottage
    • Next to Normal by Tom Kitt and Brian Yorkey
    • A selection of theoretical texts, which might include excerpts from the writings of: Aristotle, Edwin Wilson, Patrice Pavis, August Wilson, Robert Brustein, Jill Dolan, and drama critics from the New York Times, Village Voice, The Guardian, and The Tennesseean, among other publications.
    • A selection of live theatrical performances in Nashville and the region.

       

       

Transatlantic Traffic: Women Singers and the Rise of Popular Culture—from Bessie Smith to Adele