Fall 2018

Course Code Title/Instructor Meets
ENGL 101-01 World Literature: Race, Nation, and Colonization
Instructor: Sheela Jane Menon
Course Description:
What does it mean to imagine yourself as a member of a nation? What happens when nations are fractured and reconstituted? Where do you belong if you move between nations or are forcibly displaced? This course considers how contemporary works of literature from Polynesia, Asia Pacific, South Asia, and the Middle East respond to these questions. We will focus on 20th and 21st century literature by authors including Haunani-Kay Trask, Albert Wendt, Tash Aw, Rohinton Mistry, Leila Ahmed, and Rasha Abbas. Through close and contextualized readings, we will analyze how these authors imagine individuals and families within and across nations, and how their worlds are shaped by intersecting identities. In so doing, we will focus on the specific political and literary histories from which each text emerges, particularly experiences of Western colonization in each of the designated regions. By bringing these texts and contexts together, we will engage histories of both colonization and resistance, while also examining how new conceptions of nation and identity emerge from this selection of World Literature.
1030:MWF   DENNY 104
ENGL 101-02 Southern Women Writers
Instructor: Carol Ann Johnston
Course Description:
Cross-listed with WGSS 101-01. A course in prose written by women of the American South. We will begin with the diary of Mary Chesnut written during the Civil War and continue with notable writers of the twentieth and twenty-first centuries, which may include Katherine Anne Porter, Flannery O'Connor, Eudora Welty, Zora Neale Hurston, Ellen Gilchrist, Ellen Douglas, Kaye Gibbons. Some critical and theoretical texts will also be required. Writing assignments will include short explications,longer essays, and an exam. Attendance and participation in class discussion are required.
1330:TF   DENNY 313
ENGL 101-03 Thoreau and American Nature Writing: Environment, Cultures, and Values
Instructor: B Ashton Nichols
Course Description:
Cross-listed with ENST 111-01. Henry David Thoreau's Walden is the foundational document of American nature writing. We will begin with a careful examination of this new genre. We will then work to understand connections between Henry David Thoreau and the tradition of environmental writing that he began. This focus will allow us to engage important questions confronting students and scholars interested in the tradition of environmental literature in America, its sources in wider American culture, and the impact of that tradition on our current environmental movement, nationally and internationally. Writers studied may include: Aldo Leopold, Edward Abbey, Annie Dillard, Peter Matthiessen, Terry Tempest Williams, Bill McKibben, and E. O. Wilson, and more. From the preservation of wild lands to debates about global warming, from the desire to conserve and protect animal species to the need to make use of natural resources for the betterment of human life, we will explore ways that "nature writing" and "environmental literature" have played a crucial role in the development of these ideas. Two essays, final exam.
1330:MR   KAUF 186
ENGL 101-04 Monsters & Madness: Secret Lives in Victorian Literature
Instructor: Sarah Kersh
Course Description:
Evil alter-egos, soul-sucking vampires, and detective thrillersall have their roots in the literature of the nineteenth-century. From Dorian Grey to Dracula and the Hound of the Baskervilles, the sensational literature of the Victorian era sought to stimulate the mind and awaken emotion. This course will examine how monsters, mad scientists, and secret identities rose in the public imagination alongside of a rapidly-changing nation. The nineteenth century saw unprecedented growth of industry and leaps in scientific discovery; new and rapid global communication as well as transport; tenuous relationship of commodities, consumers, and economic stability; as well as changing conceptions of class, gender, and what it meant to be an individual. This course is intended to be an introduction to Victorian literature in a variety of genres, including poetry, the novel, and non-fiction prose by authors such as Robert Browning, Christina Rossetti, Oscar Wilde, Mary Elizabeth Braddon, Bram Stoker, Robert Louis Stevenson, and Sir Arthur Conan Doyle.
1030:MWF   DENNY 211
ENGL 101-05 The Epic: Gods, Devils, Monsters, and Men
Instructor: Jacob Sider Jost
Course Description:
Cross-listed with MEMS 200-04. An introduction to the epic as a genre and to the mythic stories that have shaped Western culture. We will read works by Homer, Virgil, the Beowulf poet, Milton, and Alexander Pope.
0930:MWF   WEISS 221
ENGL 101-06 Beat Literature and Culture
Instructor: Siobhan Phillips, Stacey Suver
Course Description:
Amiri Baraka described the Beat Generation as a whole bunch of people, of all different nationalities, who came to the conclusion that society sucked. Allen Ginsberg said it was about obedience to human nature. At its simplest, the Beat Generation was a youth movement in the 1950s centered around poetry, jazz, and personal liberty. This course studies Beat literature and culture and analyzes the work of several Beat writers, including Allen Ginsberg, Jack Kerouac, William Burroughs, Amiri Baraka, Joyce Johnson, Gregory Corso, and Diane di Prima. We will consider how this movement informed counterculture movements that flourished in subsequent decades, as well as how Beat culture became mainstream. The writers, poets, and playwrights we will study represent diverse viewpoints of gender, sexuality, race, ethnicity, class, and educational background.
1330:MR   BOSLER 309
ENGL 214-01 Working with Writers: Theory and Practice
Instructor: Noreen Lape
Course Description:
Cross-listed with WRPG 214-01.Permission of Instructor Required.
1330:TF   ALTHSE 110
ENGL 220-01 Introduction to Literary Studies
Instructor: Jacob Sider Jost
Course Description:
In literary studies, we explore the work texts do in the world. This course examines several texts of different kinds (e.g., novel, poetry, film, comic book, play, etc.) to investigate how literary forms create meanings. It also puts texts in conversation with several of the critical theories and methodologies that shape the discipline of literary study today (e.g., Marxist theory, new historicism, formalism, gender theory, postcolonial theory, ecocriticism, etc.). This course helps students frame interpretive questions and develop their own critical practice. This course is the prerequisite for 300-level work in English.
1030:MWF   WEISS 221
ENGL 220-02 Introduction to Literary Studies
Instructor: Carol Ann Johnston
Course Description:
In literary studies, we explore the work texts do in the world. This course examines several texts of different kinds (e.g., novel, poetry, film, comic book, play, etc.) to investigate how literary forms create meanings. It also puts texts in conversation with several of the critical theories and methodologies that shape the discipline of literary study today (e.g., Marxist theory, new historicism, formalism, gender theory, postcolonial theory, ecocriticism, etc.). This course helps students frame interpretive questions and develop their own critical practice. This course is the prerequisite for 300-level work in English.
1330:MR   BOSLER 308
ENGL 221-01 Writing, Identity, & Queer Studies: In & Out, Either/Or, and Everything in Between
Instructor: Sarah Kersh
Course Description:
Cross-listed with WRPG 211-01 and WGSS 201-01. 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   ALTHSE 201
ENGL 222-01 Audience Cultures
Instructor: Gregory Steirer
Course Description:
Cross-listed with FMST 220-01. What does it mean to be part of an audience? How does being situated in different communities of readers, film-goers, or television viewers affect the way that we value, experience, and interpret texts? What differentiates the casual audience member from the fan or fanatic? This course will explore these and other questions relating to media audiences while also introducing students to critical theories and research methodologies employed in the field of audience/fan studies.
1330:TF   BOSLER 208
ENGL 300-01 Literary Studies Research Lab
Instructor: Christine Bombaro
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 taught by English department faculty.
 
ENGL 311-01 Revolutionary Milton
Instructor: Carol Ann Johnston
Course Description:
Cross-listed with MEMS 200-05. John Milton at times emerges in the popular imagination as the benign Christian poet of Paradise Lost. While Paradise Lost is a Biblical epic poem about the fall of Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden, Milton addresses in the poem polemical subjects such as the role and place of women in an ideal society; the relationship between God and Christ the Son; the question of personal responsibility; the role of monarchy and religion in the state; the idea of a republic. Paradise Lost, along with the Bible, was one of the most frequently read books in Colonial America, and we have in our archive Benjamin Rush's copy of Paradise Lost. In addition we also have first editions of Paradise Lost, Paradise Regained, Samson Agonistes, and other beautiful and significant Milton volumes. Our study of these editions will show Milton's understanding and manipulation of the press and censorship, and suggest how Milton the revolutionary came to be recognized as one of the greatest poets in the English language.
0900:TR   LIBRY ARCHCLS
ENGL 311-02 The American Auteur
Instructor: Gregory Steirer
Course Description:
Cross-listed with FMST 310-01. Auteurs are usually defined as filmmakers whose individual styles and extraordinary control over the elements of production allow them to create unique films that reflect their own personalities and artistic preoccupations. In this class we will examine the work of four or five contemporary American directors who are usually identified as auteurs. Through examinations of their films and through discussions of film authorship and culture in the United States, we will interrogate the concept of auteurism as it functions in America today.
1500:TF   BOSLER 208
ENGL 321-01 Border Crossings in Asian American Literature
Instructor: Sheela Jane Menon
Course Description:
This course explores the various borders and border crossings that emerge across 20th and 21st century Asian American literature by writers including Celeste Ng, Carlos Bulosan, Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni, l thi diem thy, and John Okada. Our examination of these texts will be framed by the following questions: What kinds of borders are imagined in these texts? How do these borders intersect with the realities of actual geopolitical borders and immigration acts? How do race, gender, citizenship, and class influence the ways in which characters and communities negotiate these borders? We will unpack how literary texts articulate diverse immigrant experiences and engage the tensions of both real and imagined border crossings. In the process, this course will also explore the very definition of Asian American, considering the communities that are included and excluded from this collective, as well as their specific socio-political histories.
0930:MWF   DENNY 103
ENGL 321-03 Toni Morrison
Instructor: Lynn Johnson
Course Description:
Cross-listed with AFST 320-01 and WGSS 301-03. This course explores the imaginative and critical works of Nobel Prize winning author Toni Morrison. We will begin the semester by tracing Morrison's development as a novelist, paying particular attention to the ways in which she crafts her novels and employs them to provide provocative commentaries on Black identity and culture. In our analyses of these works, we will use such critical lenses as Afrocentricism, psychoanalytic theory, Black feminism, Womanism, and Marxism. Subsequently, we will study Morrison as a playwright and literary critic. We will consider Morrison's claim that classic American Literature is often informed by the Africanist presence.
1030:TR   ALTHSE 110
ENGL 331-01 Medieval Romance
Instructor: Chelsea Skalak
Course Description:
In the Middle Ages, the vernacular language we now call English was considered unworthy of true literature. Therefore literature composed in English, or romances, was valued primarily by the marginalized members of society: women, the middle classes, and laypeople. Romance as a genre evolved to both romanticize and critique the lives of the aristocracy, symbolized in the heroic knight (or princess in disguise), the quest, and the search for the Holy Grail. In this class, we will consider issues of class, gender, sexuality, and national identity through the lens of this most popular and least lauded of medieval genres.
1030:TR   WEISS 221
ENGL 331-02 Shakespeare and Tragedy
Instructor: Jacob Sider Jost
Course Description:
An exploration of tragedy through primary texts (Sophocles, Euripides, above all Shakespeare), canonical theories (Aristotle, Hegel, Frye) and recent critical discussions (Rowan Williams, Blair Hoxby, Joshua Billings)
1230:MWF   DENNY 211
ENGL 331-03 US Poetry of Modernist Era
Instructor: Siobhan Phillips
Course Description:
This course examines U.S. poetry of the first four decades of the twentieth century, focusing on how authors experimented with new forms and techniques of verse writing to engage with changing social and political conditions. Authors studied may include T. S. Eliot, Robert Frost, Langston Hughes, Marianne Moore, and Muriel Rukeyser.
1500:TF   ALTHSE 110
ENGL 341-01 Late Victorian Literature and Culture
Instructor: Sarah Kersh
Course Description:
The fin de sicleFrench for the end of the century is a period of literature and culture that has been portrayed as being caught between two ages, the Victorian and the Modern (Ledger and Luckhurst). This in between period is perhaps known best for its cry of art for arts sake and the suggestion that morality is relative. Because it usually is characterized by decadence and questions of immorality, the end of the nineteenth century is too often overlooked as a period of enormous technological, political, social, and intellectual change in British literary and cultural life. In this course, we will examine literature, and art more broadly, in the context of discourses on urban problems, The New Woman, imperialism and socialism, as well as place it in conversation with a number of developments in science, psychology, and sexology. We will read a range of different works of fiction, drama, and poetry by authors such as Oscar Wilde, Michael Field, Mona Caird, H.G. Wells, George Bernard Shaw, Bram Stoker, and William Morris.
1500:MR   ALTHSE 201
ENGL 403-01 Questions and Methods of Literary Studies
Instructor: Sheela Jane Menon
Course Description:
In preparation for the Senior Thesis Workshop, this course will examine several important methods of writing, research, and analysis in literary studies. We will explore how critical conversations have developed and evolved within the discipline, and how they can help you shape your own research and writing. Our course will be anchored in a primary textChinua Achebes classic novel of African and world literature, Things Fall Apart (1958)through which we will engage, among others, postcolonial, critical race, and cultural studies approaches to literary studies. Students will begin to formulate ideas about their own research interests while also building vital writing and analytical skills grounded in the diverse methodologies of our discipline.
1330:T   BOSLER 305
ENGL 403-02 Frankenstein and Others
Instructor: B Ashton Nichols
Course Description:
Frankenstein is perhaps the first truly modern myth. Mary Shelley, at the age of 18, penned this powerful tale as her entry into a ghost-story writing contest with her lover-and soon to be husband--Percy Bysshe Shelley, and the superstar poet Lord Byron. It was the cold and rainy summer of 1816 in Europe, after the eruption of Tambora, one of the largest climate-changing volcanoes in history. Frankenstein, the story of a man who created a being approximating human life, begins a series of nineteenth-century tales that have had a powerful influence on the last three centuries of myth-making and horror-story telling. Other Romantic monsters we shall examine may include: The Mummy! (1827), Edgar Allan Poes Stories (1830s-40s), Carmilla (1871), Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde (1886), The Picture of Dorian Gray (1890), and Dracula (1897). Students will write one short diagnostic essay (8-10 pp.) and one major research essay (15-20 pp.) which may or may not form the basis for their senior thesis in English 404. Our research during the term will prepare students for the spring thesis-writing semester of English 404.
1330:W   KAUF 187
ENGL 403-03 Questions and Methods of Literary Scholarship
Instructor: Chelsea Skalak
Course Description:
Building upon the critical methods and skills learned throughout the English major, this class will explore central questions of literary scholarship in preparation for writing the senior thesis. We will take as our base text Shakespeares King Lear and its afterlives, including the Kurosawa film Ran and Jane Smileys Pulitzer-winning novel A Thousand Acres. We will use the reception of Shakespeares classic tragedy over the last four hundred years to engage with the major theoretical models and writing practices that ground the study of literature.
1330:R   WESTC 1
ENGL 403-04 Methods and Models of Literary Scholarship
Instructor: Claire Seiler
Course Description:
In preparation for the Senior Writing Workshop, students in this seminar will: (1) strengthen their grasp of the history and current configuration of literary studies and related fields; (2) frame and begin to pursue the questions that will motivate their senior theses; and (3) hone their critical self-awareness as readers and writers. During the first ten or so weeks of the semester, we will devote a significant portion of our class time to Ralph Ellisons touchstone novel Invisible Man (1952), as well as to readings of the novel enabled by a range of literary methodologies, cultural and institutional contexts, historical and theoretical vantages, and research strategies. Throughout the semester, we will make our collaborative discussion of Invisible Man into a model for thinking in broader terms about the questions, practices, and habits of mind that inform the most generative literary scholarship, including and especially students own.
1330:W   BOSLER 214