Spring 2014

Course Code Title/Instructor Meets
ENGL 101-01 Postcolonial Detective
Instructor: Poulomi Saha
Course Description:
This course considers the historical relationship between empire and the rise of detective fiction, alongside more contemporary narratives that revisit and reimagine the form. Detective fiction has been linked to in particular to British imperialism and constructions of race from its earliest origins. In this course, we will consider how the tropes of invasion, chaos, and mystery of the genre are linked to imperial projects of occupation, governance, and containment. Readings may include work by Arthur Conan Doyle, Satyajit Ray, Joseph Conrad, Wilkie Collins, and Amitav Ghosh.
0830:MWF   EASTC 405
ENGL 101-02 21st C American Fiction
Instructor: Siobhan Phillips
Course Description:
This course will examine American fiction of the 21st century, a time when both American and fiction are problematic categories, and a time when historical legacies weigh on contemporary politics. How do different writers respond to the challenges of these conditions? What do their answers tell us about the functions and meanings of literature today? Authors will include Michael Chabon, Junot Daz, Aleksandar Hemon, and Jhumpa Lahiri. Requirements will include essays, a podcast, and a final exam.
1030:TR   EASTC 405
ENGL 101-03 Slave Narratives and Neo-Slave Narratives
Instructor: Martha Schoolman
Course Description:
This course explores the slave narrative from its origins in the transnational antislavery movement as a form of autobiographical protest literature through its repeated reformulations into the early twenty-first century as the starting point for imaginative fiction. Texts considered will include Frederick Douglasss 1845 Narrative, Harriet Jacobss Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl (1861); Elizabeth Keckleys Behind The Scenes (1868); Booker T. Washingtons Up from Slavery (1901); Toni Morrisons Beloved (1987); and Charles Johnsons The Middle Passage (1990). We will conclude the term with a consideration of the controversial figure of Nat Turner from his 1831 Confessions written by Thomas Gray through the cartoonist Kyle Bakers 2006 graphic retelling of his story. Course assignments will include oral and written exercises of varying lengths and varying degrees of formality.
1330:MR   EASTC 405
ENGL 101-04 Hollywood
Instructor: Gregory Steirer
Course Description:
Cross-listed with FLST 210-04. What is Hollywood? The home of the worlds top film studios, talent agencies, and special effects labs ? A uniquely American industrial approach to creating blockbuster films and world-class celebrities? Or a grimy and crime-ridden district in the heart of Los Angeles? In this class, we will examine Hollywood in all of these aspects, so as to better understand its function both as a mythical archetype and a business center where actual films are made.
1500:MR   EASTC 405
ENGL 101-05 Literature and London
Instructor: Leah Orr
Course Description:
Samuel Johnson famously said that when a man is tired of London, he is tired of life. This course will examine literature about Londons diverse and exciting culture, from the gin-houses and grand mansions of the past to the multi-ethnic neighborhoods of the present. Authors may include Shakespeare, Dickens, Virginia Woolf, George Orwell, and Zadie Smith.
1030:MWF   EASTC 405
ENGL 101-06 American Nature Writing: Environment, Cultures, and Values
Instructor: B Ashton Nichols
Course Description:
Cross-listed with ENST 111-01. Perhaps no genre of literature is as uniquely American as American nature writing. No genre can tell us as much about our environment, environmental culture, and the values that derive from and depend upon our natural environment. We will also work to define "nature" and to understand the complex connections between humans and the nonhuman environment they inhabit. Our guides will be Henry David Thoreau, Aldo Leopold, Edward Abbey, Annie Dillard, Terry Tempest Williams, Bill McKibben, and others. The course will be a study of metaphor, poetic and prose styles, and the link between literary and naturalistic observation. Our texts will be literary; our contexts will be environmental, cultural, and ethically ecological. Are humans a part of the natural environment? Do we see ourselves as distinct from nature? Is our environment beautiful and benign (sunsets, daffodils, puffins) or ugly and destructive (hurricanes, cancer, death)? We will examine the current importance (as well as the controversial aspects) of evolutionary ideas, and we will emphasize the role played by literature in the development of our own environmental assumptions and values. Two essays and a final exam.
0900:TR   EASTC 405
ENGL 101-07 Literary Fairy Tales, Modern and Contemporary
Instructor: Elise Levine
Course Description:
This course is an exploration of the modern and contemporary literary fairy tale. We will examine re-inventions of the folklore and tales collected by, among others, the 17th century linguists and cultural researchers Charles Perrault and the Grimm brothers. In analyzing the conventions adopted and innovations offered by both western and non-western writers, we will consider how literary practitioners present notions of Flatness, Everyday Magic, and the Sublime. Works will include ones by Angela Carter, Margaret Atwood, Brian Evenson, Lily Hoang, Michael Cunningham, Neil Gaiman, Emma Donoghue, Haruki Murakami, and Sheila Heti.
1130:MWF   DENNY 313
ENGL 101-08 Black Sustainability in African Diasporic Literatures
Instructor: Lynn Johnson
Course Description:
Cross-listed with AFST 220-09.This course will examine literary representations of social activism in predominately Black communities of the African Diaspora. Specifically, we will explore the ways in which historical and fictional Black communities fashioned distinct strategies for sustainable living despite the mainstream pressures of racism, exclusion, modernization, urban development, and forced and voluntary migration. In doing so, we will analyze the correlation between environmental and social sustainability by considering 1) the patterns of Black migration to secure economic opportunity and freedom from systemic oppression, 2) the physical topography and settings of the works, particularly asking why these locations were deemed feasible for black settlement and subsistence and 3) the direct impact that black communal living had on their survival and sense of communal connectedness. We will read novels and short stories by writers such as Zora Neale Hurston, Toni Morrison, George Schuyler, Jamaica Kincaid, Lawrence Hill, Edwidge Danticat, and Maryse Conde.
0900:TR   ALTHSE 109
ENGL 212-01 From Book to eBook: Writing About Media Change
Instructor: Gregory Steirer
Course Description:
Cross-listed with FLST 210-03 and WRPG 211-01. Over the last two decades, traditional media forms, such as the book, the newspaper, and the film, have undergone significant change as new technologies altered both the business and the cultural spheres in which they are produced and consumed. At the same time, newer media forms, such as the video game, the search engine, and the social media site, have become prominent aspects of our media landscape. In this class we will examine the process of media change: Where do new media come from? How do old media change? And is there ever really a time when media arent changing? Through a variety of formal and informal writing assignmentssome utilizing new mediastudents will also hone their expository and analytical writing skills.
1030:MWF   EASTC 312
ENGL 212-02 Where the Wild Things Are: Writing About Travel
Instructor: Poulomi Saha
Course Description:
Cross-listed with WRPG 211-02. This course journeys to the far-flung places where wild things roam. Our itinerary takes us through novels, travel narratives, journalism, and online sources that depict fantastical lands populated by wild beasts, "savage" peoples, and strange (or not so strange) customs. Beginning with early exploration narratives, the course considers how the genre of travel writing, in making distant sites and subjugated peoples at once alluringly dangerous and intimately familiar, has played a crucial role in the consolidation of imperial power. We then travel to the postcolonial era where once exotic colonies have become familiar sites of tourism and trade. The course will consider contemporary accounts of tourism and travel to ask how globalization has changed the contexts, styles, and forms of travel and its description. Through informal and formal writing assignments, students will hone their expository and analytical writing skills, and develop a familiarity with the process of revision. Syllabus may include writing by Christopher Columbus, Joseph Conrad, Italo Calvino, and Kira Salak.
1330:MR   DENNY 204
ENGL 212-03 Writing about the Past/Writing about the Future
Instructor: Leah Orr
Course Description:
Cross-listed with WRPG 211-03. How do we imagine the future? How does our perspective in the present impact how we see the past? In this course, students will study different ways to write about the past and the future. Readings will include examples of historical and futuristic writing as well as alternate history and speculative fiction (sci-fi). Students will have the opportunity to write in a variety of formats, including memoirs, proposals, and interpretive essays.
0900:TR   EASTC 102
ENGL 212-04 Writing for Digital Media
Instructor: Matthew Kochis
Course Description:
Cross-listed with WRPG 211-04. This course will emphasize the process, conventions, and production of academic writing, albeit in a digital space. Students will learn how to conduct primary research by examining print magazines from the early twentieth century as source material. Through annotation, students will place their magazines in an appropriate context and develop a scholarly argument based on careful analysis. Throughout this semester, blog posts, podcasts, and films will require thorough and frequent revisions. In essence, this course will introduce students to the various forms of digital media, supply them with the skills necessary to professionally display their digitized material, and train them to become literate producers and consumers of new media.
1030:TR   EASTC 312
ENGL 212-05 In & Out, Either/Or, and Everything In Between: Writing, Identity, and Queer Studies
Instructor: Sarah Kersh
Course Description:
Cross-listed with WRPG 211-05.Kate Bornstein writes: "I know I'm not a man...and I've come to the conclusion that I'm probably not a woman either. The trouble is, we're living in a world that insists we be one or the other." In this reading and writing intensive course, students will investigate how we approach the space outside of one or the other through literature, film, and narrative more generally. Throughout the semester we will explore and engage critically with established and emerging arguments in queer theory, as well as read and watch texts dealing with issues of identity and identification. Although queer is a contested term, it describesat least potentiallysexualities and genders that fall outside of normative constellations. Students will learn how to summarize and engage with arguments, and to craft and insert their own voice into the ongoing debates about the efficacy of queer theory and queer studies. Moreover, well take on questions that relate word to world in order to ask: How might our theory productively intervene in LGBTQ civil rights discourse outside our classroom? How do we define queer and is it necessarily attached to sexual orientation? How do our own histories and narratives intersect with the works we analyze? Our course texts will pull from a range of genres including graphic novels, film, poetry, memoir, and fiction. Some texts may include Alison Bechdels Fun Home, Audre Lordes Zami, Jackie Kay's Trumpet, David Sedaris Me Talk Pretty One Day, and films such as Paris is Burning and Boys Dont Cry.
1330:MR   BOSLER 213
ENGL 214-01 Working with Writers: Theory and Practice
Instructor: Lisa Wolff
Course Description:
Cross-listed with WRPG 214-01.Permission of Instructor Required
1330:MR   ALTHSE 204
ENGL 218-01 Creative Writing: Poetry and Fiction
Instructor: Adrienne Su, Elise Levine
Course Description:
An introductory creative writing workshop in poetry and fiction.
1330:R   EASTC 107
1330:R   EASTC 212
ENGL 218-02 Creative Writing: Poetry and Fiction
Instructor: Carol Ann Johnston, Darrach Dolan
Course Description:
An introductory creative writing workshop in poetry and fiction.
1330:W   EASTC 107
1330:W   EASTC 312
ENGL 220-01 Critical Approaches and Literary Methods
Instructor: K Wendy Moffat
Course Description:
Intended for students considering the English major or minor.
0930:MWF   EASTC 300
ENGL 220-02 Critical Approaches and Literary Methods
Instructor: Martha Schoolman
Course Description:
Intended for students considering the English major or minor.
1030:TR   EASTC 406
ENGL 220-03 Critical Approaches and Literary Methods
Instructor: Claire Seiler
Course Description:
Intended for students considering the English major or minor.
1330:MR   EASTC 301
ENGL 300-01 Critical Approaches and Literary Methods (C.A.L.M.) Lab
Instructor: Elizabeth Ferer, K Wendy Moffat
Course Description:
This P/F non-credit research course introduces students to research methodology for advanced literary studies. ENGL 300 is a co-requisite with a student's first 300-level literature course (except ENGL 339).
 
ENGL 329-01 Philosophy and Literature
Instructor: Alyssa DeBlasio
Course Description:
Cross-listed with PHIL 270-01 and RUSS 270-01. Dostoevsky's characters lie, steal, scheme, and murder. What is it about Dostoevsky's depictions of their lying, cheating ways that makes his novels not just literary but philosophical? And what is it about philosophical works like Nietzsche's that makes them literary? More generally, where do the overlapping realms of literature and philosophy begin and end? This course investigates the intersections of philosophy and literature across different schools of thinking, paying special attention to the work of Dostoevsky, Kierkegaard, Nietzsche, Sartre, and Tolstoy. We will pair the treatment of philosophical issues in fiction with their treatment in more traditional philosophical genres, thereby raising and discussing the contentious question of whether philosophy can achieve things that literature cannot, and vice versa.
1330:TF   BOSLER 309
ENGL 335-01 Deconstructing the Superhero
Instructor: Gregory Steirer
Course Description:
Cross-listed with FLST 310-01. With superhero films dominating the summer blockbusters, superhero comics like Watchmen topping bestseller lists, and a whole slew of superhero properties being adapted for television, the superhero has arguably never been such a prominent figure in our cultural landscape. This new prominence, however, has also been accompanied by a host of critiques and interrogations of the superhero archetype itself. Is the superhero a force for good and a deserving figure for emulation? Or does the superheros goodness disguise a radical violence that works to undermine our most cherished values? Primary texts for this course will include printed works by Michael Chabon, Garth Ennis, and Brian K. Vaughan, films such as Unbreakable, The Dark Knight, and Kick-Ass, and television shows such as Misfits and Smallville. The secondarytheoreticalreadings for the course will draw upon ideological critique, feminist and queer theory, formalism, and media industries scholarship.
1330:TF   EASTC 405
ENGL 338-01 The Craft of Poetry
Instructor: Adrienne Su
Course Description:
Looking mainly at modern and contemporary poetry, we will examine poems from the point of view of the apprentice poet, trying to figure out how the masters did it, and what, specifically, makes a poem succeed. To do so, we'll think about poems in the context in which they were written and the possibilities the poet could have chosen (but did not). There will be a research paper. Among the likely poets: W. H. Auden, Henri Cole, Alan Dugan, Robert Frost, Louise Glck, Robert Hayden, Seamus Heaney, Maxine Kumin, Philip Larkin, Sylvia Plath, W. B. Yeats.
1030:MWF   EASTC 406
ENGL 339-01 Contemporary American Fiction and Memoir: Between Worlds
Instructor: Sharon O'Brien
Course Description:
Cross-listed with AMST 301-01. In this course, we will be exploring how contemporary American writers use the genres of memoir, novel, and short story to explore the complexity, multiplicity, and variety of American identities and hyphenated American identities in the late twentieth and early twenty-first century. Identity is not a single category; all of us inhabit many identities, some of which we may need to hide, some of which we may need to express. Identities can shift over time, identities can be hyphenated, multiple, contradictory. Identities can stretch across nations, religions, languages, cultures; they can be hyphenated, not singular, as many immigrants to the United States maintain ties to a homeland or to an inherited culture. In this course we will focus on literature portraying immigrant lives, racial and gay/lesbian passing, intersexuality, and cross-cultural and racial adoption. We will be reading such writers as Jhumpa Lahiri, Edwige Danticat, Alison Bechdel, and Jeffrey Eugenides. We will ask such questions as: How do writers tell stories that negotiate between worlds? How does their work engage with issues of race, class, gender, sexuality, ethnicity, diaspora? What literary or narrative techniques do the writers use to make their stories powerful?
1330:TF   EASTC 301
ENGL 339-02 Literary Fairy Tales, Modern and Contemporary
Instructor: Elise Levine
Course Description:
May include Renaissance tragedy, the romance, development of the novel, 17th-18th century satire and its classical models, or autobiography and memoir. Prerequisite: 220 or permission of the instructor.
1130:MWF   DENNY 313
ENGL 345-01 Early Women Writers
Instructor: Leah Orr
Course Description:
Cross-listed with WGST 300-04.In this class, we will read the literature of women writers of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. At a time when very few jobs were available to women, some succeeded in writing poetry, plays, novels, and essays. They had a tremendous impact on later authors: Virginia Woolf says of Aphra Behn that it was she who earned them the right to speak their minds. The literature for this course will seem surprisingly modern: like many women today, these authors and their characters advocate equality, struggle to balance motherhood and marriage, resist parental pressure, and try to find their own ways in life. Authors for this course will include Behn, Eliza Haywood, Frances Burney, Charlotte Lennox, Mary Wollstonecraft, and Jane Austen.
1230:MWF   EASTC 301
ENGL 370-01 Literary Cultures of the Antebellum United States
Instructor: Martha Schoolman
Course Description:
This course approaches US literature by attending to three significant and overlapping centers of intense multigeneric literary creativity emerging from the period spanning 1831-1861: Abolitionism, Transcendentalism and Herman Melvilles Moby Dick. First, we will examine novels, poems, autobiographies, lectures, sermons and manifestoes produced around the abolitionist movement, including work by William Lloyd Garrison, Frederick Douglass, Harriet Beecher Stowe, and Frances EW Harper. Second, we will sample the essays, poems, memoirs, lectures and manifestoes produced by the New England Transcendentalists, including Ralph Waldo Emerson, Henry David Thoreau, and Margaret Fuller, as well as second-generation transcendentalists such as Thomas Wentworth Higginson, and Louisa May Alcott. Third, we will approach Herman Melvilles Moby-Dick as a textual engine in its own right: a work of great multivocal ambition to capture the white whale in light of art and science, literature and philosophy, linguistics and drama; and as a novel that seems uniquely suited to the production of new text, including film and graphic novels, dramatic readings and interpretive dances, parodies and postmodern retellings, as well as good old literary history.
0900:TR   EASTC 301
ENGL 381-01 Rushdie Writes the Nation
Instructor: Poulomi Saha
Course Description:
"Rushdie Writes the Nation" In Midnights Children, Salman Rushdie writes, to understand me, youll have to swallow a world. In this course, we will consume the worlds of Rushdies writing to think critically about the construction of home and nation in diasporic literature. We will consider the relationship between fictionality, intertextuality, and history as we examine his representations of the subcontinent, the United States, and Britain. In addition, we will engage with the texts and theories of Anglophone and postcolonial literature from within which he writes. Readings may include Midnights Children, Satanic Verses, and Shame.
1030:TR   ALTHSE 109
ENGL 389-01 Transatlantic Poetry of the Mad Men Era
Instructor: Claire Seiler
Course Description:
Literary scholarship tends to describe the immediate postwar period as notable primarily for witnessing the dusk of modernism or the dawn of postmodernism. Midcentury poets, by contrast, figured their epoch as bearing, in Wallace Stevenss words, the weight of primary noon (1947). This course explores how transatlantic poetry shaped, and was shaped by, the shifting political, artistic, and social ground of the mid-twentieth century. We will situate key volumes of poems in contemporaneous public culture and amid classic and recent accounts of the midcentury in England, Ireland, and the United States; at various points throughout the semester, we will examine how Mad Men, in its depictions of youth movements, gay culture, suburbia, transatlantic mobility, and war memory (among other topics), reflects the concerns and innovations of midcentury Anglo-American poetry. Poets include: Auden, Bishop, Brooks, Eliot, Ginsberg, Heaney, T. Hughes, Larkin, OHara, and Plath.
1500:MR   EASTC 301
ENGL 394-01 Revolutionary Milton
Instructor: Carol Ann Johnston
Course Description:
Detailed study of the poetry and prose with emphasis on the development of Milton as a poet. Prerequisite: 220 or the permission of the instructor.
1030:TR   EASTC 301
ENGL 404-01 Senior Thesis Workshop
Instructor: K Wendy Moffat
Course Description:
A workshop requiring students to share discoveries and problems as they produce a lengthy manuscript based on a topic of their own choosing, subject to the approval of the instructor. Prerequisites: 300 and 403.
1330:W   EASTC 406
ENGL 404-02 Senior Thesis Workshop
Instructor: B Ashton Nichols
Course Description:
A workshop requiring students to share discoveries and problems as they produce a lengthy manuscript based on a topic of their own choosing, subject to the approval of the instructor. Prerequisites: 300 and 403.
1330:T   KAUF 178
ENGL 404-03 Senior Thesis Workshop
Instructor: Siobhan Phillips
Course Description:
A workshop requiring students to share discoveries and problems as they produce a lengthy manuscript based on a topic of their own choosing, subject to the approval of the instructor. Prerequisites: 300 and 403.
1330:R   EASTC 312
ENGL 418-01 Mixed Genre Workshop
Instructor: Adrienne Su
Course Description:
Capstone workshop for students minoring with an emphasis in poetry or fiction. Students will work in one genre of their choice. In exceptional cases, a student may work in both genres with permission of the instructor. Prerequisites: 101 and (317 or 319).
1330:M   EASTC 312
ENGL 500-01 Hollywood Industry Studies
Instructor: Gregory Steirer
Course Description: