- 160A1-001 Lecture MW 11:00 a.m.-11:50 a.m.
- 160A1-001A DIscussion section F 11:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m.
- 160A1-001B Discussion section F 12:00 p.m.-12:50 p.m.
- 160A1-001C Discussion section F 11:00 a.m.-11:50 a.m.
- 160A1-001D Discussion section F 12:00 p.m.-12:50 p.m.
Our course texts will guide us through a rigorous, challenging, and hopefully-sometimes-revelatory of reading in the literature of post-colonialism in English. This semester, we’ll work to get a sense of how these authors talk to us (however we construe that “us”) and to each other, the historical and political contexts shaping their artistic concerns, and how they view the role of art and the production of literature in an increasingly globalized world. We’ll think about the emergence of English as a language that has been used in literature to colonize, to define the nation, to create international connections, and to theorize the global. We’ll discuss what it means for post-independence authors to choose to work in a colonial language (or, in the case of one of our authors, to refuse to do so). We’ll do this by looking at a variety of literary forms, including the novel, lyric and dramatic poetry, and works that are betwixt and between those more traditional forms. Course authors will likely include Chinua Achebe, Wole Soyinka, Derek Walcott, Leslie Marmon Silko, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, Grace Nichols, and Nuala ní Dhomhnaill.
MWF 1:00-1:50 p.m.
Across cultures and throughout history, writers have depicted the Lawyer in various and conflicting ways. What does this say about a particular society? What does this say about the legal system in which the Lawyer operates? And, importantly, what does our modern portrait of this figure tell us about our own values and ethics today? As the liaison between the citizenry and official authority, the Lawyer -- whether as attorney, advocate, judge, or legal rhetorician -- functions, among other things, as an enforcer or a shield in relation to that authority. The civil law of European nations, the common law of England and the United States, the religious law of major religions, and the law of tribal societies have all created differing roles for their advocates, and writers have long worked to describe the complexity of this power relationship. We will take a critical, and hopefully entertaining look, at their ideas and stories.
TR 12:30-1:45 p.m.
This course will explore concepts in Black popular culture of the last fifty years with particular emphasis on connections between the Black Power movement, the Black Arts movement and (M4BL) the Movement for Black Lives. Using cultural and critical race theories, students will gain understanding of the historical, popular and political contexts in which Blackness is culturally produced in American society. Materials for the course will include a variety of films, online resources, social media artifacts, scholarly/theoretical texts and creative works (music, fiction writing, painting, sculpture). Hip Hop Culture, Afrofuturism and Black Feminism will also be focal points of the course.
**newly added course**
What can the study of popular cultural forms like Television, Films, Advertisements, Video Games, Facebook as well as cultural practices like shopping, viewing habits, and other modes of consumption reveal about US American Values? How do representations of race, class, gender, and sexuality disseminated within these popular texts shape the way we come to see others and ourselves? These are some of the guiding questions we will be exploring in our study of US popular culture. Through an examination of both critical essays and primary texts, students in this course will learn not only how to critically read and interpret various cultural forms, but also will come to understand the ways in which popular culture structures our day to day lives.
- ENGL 201-001 TR 9:30-10:45 a.m.
- ENGL 201-002 TR 2:00-3:15 p.m.
- ENGL 201-003 MW 4:30-5:45 p.m.
This course is intended to give students a practical understanding of beginning techniques of creative or literary nonfiction writing (the personal essay, reportage, and memoir) with an emphasis on craft and research, taught through exercises and modeling, the writing and revision of original nonfiction, and readings and discussion of contemporary and classic nonfiction. This course also introduces students to the workshop method used in the intermediate and advanced courses.
- ENGL 209-001 TR 2:00-3:15 p.m.
- ENGL 209-002 MW 3:30-4:45 p.m.
The poet Kenneth Koch says: "Poetry is a separate language within our language… a language in which the sound of words is raised to an importance equal to that of their meaning." In this class, we’ll tune our ears to the sounds of poetic language. We will learn some of the most important tools of poetic craft (rhyme, rhythm, repetition, image, etc.) We will look at poetry from the ancients to the present as models for our own work. A variety of in-class and out-of-class prompts will help to stoke our imagination and inspiration. Then we will develop a process for reading, critiquing, and revising our own work as well as the work of our peers.
- ENGL 210-001 TR 9:30-10:45 a.m.
- ENGL 210-002 TR 2:00-3:15 p.m.
- ENGL 210-003 MW 4:30-5:45 p.m.
- ENGL 210-004 TR 3:30-4:45 p.m.
- ENGL 210-005 MW 3:30-4:45 p.m.
The entry course in the fiction sequence emphasizes the close study of the major craft elements of fiction (i.e., character, point of view, plot), usually with a focus on the short story. Students engage in close reading and discussion of contemporary and classic fiction and, through specific exercises and assignments, begin practicing the techniques, mechanisms, and modes of the short story. ENGL 210 also introduces students to the workshop method used in the intermediate and advanced courses, with guidelines on the importance of active participation and engaged response.
This course is an introduction to multiple genres of creative writing in shorter forms: poetry, the short-short story, brief creative nonfiction, and the Ten-Minute play. The main objective of this course will be acquainting you with various creative literary forms and genres. We will also develop and explore techniques of craft, revision, and complementary reading practices.
A study of the New Testament books with some attention to Old Testament sources and apocryphal writings associated with both testaments. The emphasis will be on such literary features as narrative and poetic styles, implied authors and audiences, and myths and metaphors similar to those found in other works of world literature. Previous experience with the Bible is neither necessary nor necessarily helpful. The assigned text is The Access Bible: New Revised Standard Version. Requirements include quizzes, in-class writing, two short essays, and mid-term and final exams.
**newly added course** TR: 11:00 a.m.-12:15 p.m.
This is a course in English Renaissance (or early modern) and African-American literature. The dramatic plays and prose pieces produced during these disparate literary periods share many thematic—and some conventional—points of contact that are often overlooked and consequently not fully explored. Both English Renaissance and modern African-American authors addressed several critical issues such as miscegenation, power (political, parental, social), class, sexuality, lineage, death, identity, passing, homosexuality/homosociality, and race. These common preoccupations will enable our productive crossing of various boundaries in class, most notably, the historical boundary between the texts. Authors will include W.E.B. Du Bois, Suzan-Lori Parks, William Shakespeare, Adrienne Kennedy, Christopher Marlowe, James Baldwin, Nella Larsen, and Harriet Jacobs.
This course is focused on Shakespeare’s major plays. Students will read seven of Shakespeare’s plays (see below), as well as selected secondary texts on the early modern era, the theater culture and community of Shakespeare’s time, and critical analyses of the works. The class will be largely discussion-based day to day, while short written responses, two short essays, and one long essay will be required in addition to the reading.
- Language Emphasis
- MWF 10:00-10:50 a.m.
Intensive study of selected works by major British writers.
Children’s Literature Through the Ages
From the “origins” of Children’s Literature to the current day call for diverse voices in the genre, this course examines the development of concepts of the child, children’s literature, and Western Culture. We will read a broad spectrum of historical and contemporary U.S., British, and world literature, and works representing a variety of genres and cultures. Through a survey of folk tales, picture books, middle grade novels, young adult novels, and graphic novels, we will consider the historical development of children’s literature as well as its dual agenda of instruction and amusement.
Texts/readings will be from the four major genres – fiction, nonfiction, poetry, and drama. We will also do “twin readings.” For example, paring Arthur Miller’s The Crucible with I, Tituba, Black Witch of Salem. Assignments include short papers, exams and group reports. Extra credit will be given for complimentary activities
**This is a regular course and due to a glitch in the UA system, during Fall registration, students must register for both lecture and discussion. This will be corrected in future semesters!**
- 266-001 In-Person Lecture MW 4:30 p.m.-5:20 p.m.
- 266-001A In-Person Discussion MW 5:20 p.m.-5:45 p.m.
Students will learn to critically examine and write about Young Adult novels and to develop a better understanding of the genre as a whole. Students will discuss, explore, and analyze the ways in which cultural and historical contexts influence the production and themes of literature. Students will come to understand the ways in which Young Adult literature shapes understandings of adolescence.
For this section of English 280, we will read a wide-range of different types of literature: short stories, poems, plays, novels—as well as some texts that are not so easy to classify. We will discuss the challenges that each of these different literary forms present us as readers, as we try to interpret and make sense of them. Over the course of the semester, we will discuss the varied elements that comprise literary works, the varied aspects that one might consider when analyzing a literary text and different interpretive approaches to literature. We will also discuss literary tradition and why it matters when thinking about individual texts. The reading list for the course will likely include short stories by Bret Harte, Jack London, Ernest Hemingway, Clarice Lispector, and Rosario Ferré; the play “Zoot Suit” (a revival of which is currently playing to sell-out crowds in Los Angeles); Volkswagen Blues (a delightful road trip novel), and Art Spiegelman’s Pulitzer prize-winning, graphic memoir about the Holocaust, Maus. Expect to write several short papers over the course of the semester.
This course will be a reading of Joseph Conrad's Heart of Darkness. The purpose if this course is to teach the basics of literary interpretation. There will be six short papers and a take-home final. This is one of the great stories. Students will come to know it well.
In this introductory course, we will review and expand our understanding of literary terms, conduct close reading of literary texts, and explore various methods of interpretation of those texts. For this class, the literature we will read and analyze critically will be that of our immediate writing community -- the creative writing professors at the University of Arizona -- real life people who have offices right down the hall. Poems. Novels. Short Stories. Essays. Memoirs. We’ve got it all! Students sometimes think of literature as something “other” -- something distant both in time and place -- an abstract affair or nostalgic artifact. That far-away feel is neither necessary nor historically situated. The goal of the course is to foster and improve students’ connection to literature by making it a site-specific event: Yes, literature happens right here in the English Department all the time. The requirements include several short essays and a take-home final exam.
Close reading of literary texts, critical analysis, and articulation of intellectually challenging ideas in clear prose.
Through an exploration of various kinds of literature, which will include poetry, drama, and prose/fiction, this online course will introduce students to different authors as we work on developing close reading skills. By dissecting the language in and structure of our texts, we will gain a deeper understanding of each literary work and establish connections among texts that, on the surface, may appear completely unrelated. This online course will be writing intensive, with a specific focus on literary and critical analysis. Students can expect weekly short writing assignments and regular feedback on their writing.
- TR 9:30-10:45 a.m.
How do contemporary poets do what they do? How can we learn from the past and yet still “make it new”? In this class, we will consider poetic traditions as well as contemporary poetic procedures. During the first few weeks of class we will review the most important characteristics of poetry (rhyme, rhythm, repetition, image, music, etc.). Then we will shift emphasis away from product (the published poem) toward process and the cultivation of one’s attention to the world and to experience. Finally, we will work through the various stages of creation and revision with aim of becoming better readers and editors of our own as well as our classmates’ work.
- TR 2:00-3:15 p.m.
“Let’s face it. I am a marked woman, but not everybody knows my name. ‘Peaches’ and ‘Brown Sugar,’ ‘Sapphire’ and ‘Earth Mother,’ ‘Aunty,’ ‘Granny,’ God’s ‘Holy Fool,’ a ‘Miss Ebony First,’ or ‘Black Woman at the Podium’: I describe a locus of confounded identities, a meeting ground of investments and privations in the national treasury of rhetorical wealth…. In order for me to speak a truer word concerning myself, I must strip down through layers of attenuated meanings, made an excess in time; over time, assigned by a particular historical order, and there await whatever marvels of my own inventiveness. The personal pronouns are offered in service of a collective function.”
That’s how scholar Hortense Spillers opens her 1987 essay “Mama’s Baby, Papa’s Maybe: An American Grammar Book.” This seminar convenes thirty years later to exercise that collective function as an alternative to approaches that would frame freedom as independence and self-possession. We will read radical thinkers who wrote themselves, quite self-consciously, into the intellectual record even as we think expansively about how to read the traces of collective practices against which the very idea of an intellectual tradition formulates itself. To this end, our collective will include the children who participated in early childhood education programs of the Child Development Group of Mississippi in the early 1960s, the black women who led and participated in Atlanta’s 1881 washerwomen’s strike, as well as thinkers such as W.E. B. Du Bois and Franz Fanon who helped frame the intellectual tradition some today call Black Thought. We will study and read and talk and talk to test the proposition that freedom is an endless meeting. After Giorgio Agamben and others, we will ask what it might mean to be one another’s means without ends. After Hortense Spillers, we will offer the personal pronouns in service of a collective function that refuses to coalesce into a new order of power, a function that may be at once the coming and long standing marvel of our inventiveness.
The origin and evolution of genres in literature, rhetoric, and nonfiction prose, among others.
- MWF 1:00-2:00 p.m.
- TR 9:30-10:45 a.m.
In this course, students will read works written by inmates and ex-inmates, works about the prison system in the U.S., and works that reveal some of the literary (in the broadest sense) possibilities for prison writing.
Students will also have an opportunity to respond to writing currently being done by inmates in the Arizona state prison in Tucson in a workshop being conducted there by Erec Toso, a member of the UA faculty. Our work on the inmates’ writing will be done entirely by correspondence. Security considerations require that the writing consult-ants remain anonymous in relation to the inmates. This will be a strict requirement in the course.
To prepare for the interaction with inmates, students in the course will work together on their own writing and consider how best to respond to writing in process, including their own.
Guest consultants who have taught writing in Arizona’s prisons and ex-inmate writers will visit the class.
Prerequisite to the course is completion of a First Year Writing course with a C or better. This course is part of the English Department’s initiative in prison writing.
Michelle Alexander, The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness The Autobiography of Malcolm X Ted Conover, Newjack: Guarding Sing Sing Ken Lamberton, Beyond Desert Walls Jeffrey Reiman, The Rich Get Richer and the Poor Get Prison Wilbert Rideau, In the Place of Justice Shaka Senghor, Writing my Wrongs Richard Shelton, Crossing the Yard Writings from Rain Shadow Review, the PEN Project, the Angolite
- ENGL 340-002 TR 11:00 a.m.-12:15 p.m. Staff
- TR 2:00-3:15 p.m.
This course offers an introduction to queer theory and culture, looking at what happens to literature and film when one looks at it through the prism of sexuality and gender. We will be interrogating the meaning of sex, sexuality, gender, and sexual / gender identity in a variety of contexts: in terms of the experience of authors, the constitution of characters, the meaning of settings, the relationship of literature or film to larger political issues, the practice of reading, shifting historical meanings, temporality, religion, and in relation to race, class, and able-bodiedness. We will be examining not only how sexual discourses constitute the shifting meaning of “gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, or queer” identity and experience, but “straight” or “normative” identities and life narratives, as well.
Yet the very notion of a "sexual identity," no matter how broadly defined, begs a number of questions. What is gender, anyway? How is it experienced socially, erotically, in the body? How do we think of sexuality? Is it a kind of appetite one is born with, akin to hunger or thirst? A drive that aims toward a very specific kind of object? Or is it something that is excited from without, responding to cultural stimuli that tell us what we want? Does one "choose" a sexual identity, is one born with it, or is it something that develops and changes over time? And how is it similar to (or different from) racial or class identity as a political category of exclusion and oppression? How does sexual desire relate to the production of gender—both for the desiring self and for the desired object?
While the art of rhetoric is often thought about in relation to persuasion and to a host of classical figures such as Plato, Aristotle, Quintilian, Cicero, and the Sophists, it provides a much larger framework that helps us to explain and understand modern social phenomena such as the growth of conspiracy theories in modern culture and the rise of demagogic and authoritarian figures in the context of populist political movements.
In this course, we will take a close look at this modern context by seeing how rhetorical study can help us to examine the persuasiveness of so-called conspiracy theories about 9/11, 7/7, and other defining events. How might we explain the appeal of these so-called conspiracy theories in relation to official narratives about these “terrorist attacks”? In addition, rhetorical study can help us to understand the growth of populist movements in the U.S. and Europe, providing a framework through which to explain and understand the surprising rise of Donald Trump as a presidential candidate and as an anti-establishment politician. It would be a mistake, however, to see Trump as a singular figure, with European politicians such as Marine Le Pen and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan using similar populist appeals against the opposition, immigrants, and dissidents.
In addition to two short papers, students will be asked to develop a final course project that makes use of multimedia such as Spark Adobe and YouTube. Please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions.
This is a survey from Beowulf through the 1600s with emphasis on major writers in their literary and historical contexts--the Beowulf poet, Chaucer, Shakespeare, and the metaphysical poets, especially Donne's love lyrics and sacred poems. Lectures will cover literary-historical issues and explore various approaches to interpretation. Discussions will assist you to develop your ability to analyze texts and will lead you to experience the ways literature produces meanings and emotion. You will have a research writing assignment, tests, and final.
This course will begin with Beowolf and end with selections from Milton’s Paradise Lost. In between, we will read Gawain and The Green Knight, selected tales from Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales, Book 1 of Spenser’s Faerie Queen, selected poems by John Donne and Andrew Marvel, Shakespeare’s Much Ado About Nothing and Othello. There will be 11 pop quizzes (you can drop one), a midterm and final and a final paper.
A survey of literature written in English in Britain and America from the 17th through the 19th centuries, this course will read broadly through multiple significant historical traditions, including but not limited to: Restoration comedy, Puritan poetry, American autobiography, Romanticism, the novel of manners, the gothic romance, the slave narrative, and periodical fiction. Students will leave the course having read several of the most studied and referenced works of the period, and will be able to explain the significance of those works as both individual works of literature and in relation to the wider development of historical literary traditions.
Through engaged reading of important works from a number of literary genres the course introduces students to the practice of thinking perceptively about literature. Students will engage with lyric poetry, prose, and drama from different times and places. We will cover basic terminology, the primary tools of analysis, of literary criticism. Students should come away from the course confident of their ability to approach any work of literature intelligently.
This course will introduce students to close reading and analysis of literary texts. We will read some plays, short stories, poems, and a couple of novels. The objective is to teach students concepts and techniques for developing and writing persuasive interpretations based primarily on textual evidence and rhetorical subtlety. Grades will be determined mostly by a series of relatively short critical papers, a mid-term and a final exam.
TR 12:30-1:45 p.m. (Hybrid)
This course will be an intensive introduction to the knowledge and skills required for reading closely and writing convincingly about literary texts. We will primarily be reading short but challenging works from a variety of time periods and contexts. Loosely linking these works will be the theme of "encounter," and we'll look how literary writers have variously staged ethically and erotically charged meetings with the exotic, the foreign, and the unknown. We'll read selectively in early modern, romantic, and modern poetry, and selections of fiction and drama to include work by William Shakespeare, Aphra Behn, Herman Melville, Ernest Hemingway, Nella Larsen, J. M. Coetzee, David Henry Hwang, and others. Assignments to include frequent short responses, a midterm exam on basic terminology, and a series of focused essay assignments
- MW 3:00-4:15 p.m.
This course will provide an overview of the Children’s Literature literary and academic publishing industry. It is designed to provide aspiring editors and writers basic knowledge of the field including research and discussion of: editing, querying, publishing trends, agents & agenting, submissions, digital publishing, scholarly journals, and publishing houses. Students will read and gain an understanding of the genres of Children’s Literature (short stories, picture books, fiction, non-fiction) as well as the scholarly study and academic writing on these works.
This junior seminar immerses you in Virginia Woolf: novelist, essayist, feminist. Via Woolf we'll explore the first and second world wars, literary modernism, the representation of consciousness in the novel, the relations between philosophy, literature, and the visual arts, and questions of gender, sexuality, disability, education, empire, and fascism, among others. Be prepared to extensively explore Woolf's aesthetics. Readings may include: Woolf’s short stories, diary entries, critical prose relating to art and politics, novels such as Jacob’s Room, Mrs. Dalloway, To the Lighthouse, and Orlando, and longer essays such as A Room of One’s Own and Three Guineas. We’ll also consider Woolf’s fellow artists and theorists in the Bloomsbury circle and a coterie of modernists across the globe (for instance, Clarice Lispector, Katherine Mansfield, and Franz Kafka). We’ll read literature alongside exciting secondary criticism that serves to enrich your thinking about Woolf, her historical moment, and modernism; you’ll become an expert in her oeuvre and learn what a multiplicity of critical inquiries and approaches her work invites. Expect to participate in lively seminar discussions, to deliver one kick-off presentation, and to write two essays on Woolf.
“The icebergs are potentially and very literally our ancestors”
“All that is solid melts into air, all that is holy is profaned”
The melting of glaciers and sea ice has contributed to radical changes not only to our earth’s topography, but also to the way that we conceive of and express our relationship to time. This course will ask: How is history revealed by art, literature and scientific data dedicated to Arctic and Antarctic landscapes? How do various representations of polar ice express our precarious relationship to the future? On a broader level, we will consider ice as a metaphor for formal and literary representation itself. We will read ice, in literary and artistic terms, as a concrete expression of what is always potentially fluid, vaporous, and in flux, and, in geographical, economic and political terms, as an expression of the relation between abstract human systems and material reality. Students will engage in close readings and analysis of selected literary texts, criticism, visual art and short films ranging from Jean Jacques Rousseau’s La Nouvelle Heloise (1775)—a novel that inspired the likes of Lord George Byron and Mary Bysshe Shelley to explore the glaciers of Mont Blanc both in their travels and in their writing—to Isaac Julien’s short film, True North (2004), which explores issues of gender and race through a loose re-telling of the story of the black American explorer, Matthew Henson. Expect lively in-class discussion as well as a focus on the methods and materials of literary research. Class visits to the University library and the Center for Creative Photography will introduce students to archival research methods, while in-class presentations by a visiting artist and a climate scientist will invite discussion on different approaches to research, and possibilities of engaging with our environment.
- TR 3:30-4:45 p.m.
This course deals with the crime and gangster film and literature placed within an historical context. We will examine the notions of nationality, race, ethnicity and gender that subtend these works. In so doing, we will approach the aesthetic and ideological styles and meanings of some of the most significant crime films and literary works ever made, including Scarface, The Killing, The Godfather, Reservoir Dogs, and The History of Violence. Students will take in-class quizzes, write screening reports, and take midterm and final exams.
We will open the class with a close reading of selected essays discussing: boundaries between fiction and nonfiction; research methods in writing nonfiction; choosing a subject; the relationship between the writer and her/his subject; the various approaches to material (e.g., contemplative, rhetorical, ironic, etc.). This is a course in the writing of literary nonfiction, a broad rubric that includes (but is not limited to) critical essay, personal essay, memoir, travel writing, and experimental work based in lived experience. You will be asked to produce several short essays in the style and/or genre of the various authors whom we are reading . . . as well as to write two longer essays which we will discuss in workshop, each of which you will revise.
This course offers an opportunity to write and think creatively, learn about the craft of fiction writing, incorporate rewriting into your writing process, and develop as an articulate, generous critic of writing. Your time will be divided in large part between writing and rewriting your own work, and reading and commenting upon the work of your fellow student writers. For inspiration, and to gain insights into fictional craft, we’ll read published stories and/or novels. Emphasis throughout the semester will be on student participation and the building of a community of literary peers.
T 3:15-5:45 p.m. In-Person
- TR 11:00-12:15 p.m.
Analysis of selected writings by women, as well as representations of women in literature, with attention to social and intellectual contexts.
- MW 4:30-5:45 p.m.
The focus of this course will be the non-fiction genre known as Testimonio. Testimonio is a form of life-writing whose narrator is a “real” protagonist, or witness, of the events he/she recounts. Although life-writing can be located in several different literary categories, one of the defining features of a testimonio, as (re)defined in the 1960’s and 1970’s, is its overt concern with issues of social justice, embodying the mantra of “the personal is political.” In this course we will read from a diverse corpus of first person narrated texts to explore the ways memory, trauma, violence and narration dictate and potentially subvert the story produced from this act of “bearing witness.” We will also examine the power dynamic involved in representing one’s life story, or in the attempt to (re)present the stories of others. For instance, who has access to tell their story? What types of stories get published and heard? In addition, we will employ theories from the areas of subaltern studies, genre theory, feminism and cultural theory, in order to examine how the production of testimonio challenges the binaries between the categories of fact/fiction, literature/science, insider/outsider and subject/object. This class is recommended for students who enjoy reading life narratives (e.g. autobiographies, memoirs, ethnographies), as well as students who are invested in issues of social justice.
The course aims to introduce students to Chaucer’s poetry through some of the most engaging of the Canterbury Tales. The class text will be the Norton Critical Edition. Modern English translations of excerpts from writings of Chaucer’s antecedents and contemporaries provide an historical and literary context, and selections of modern criticism suggest insightful ways of approaching the primary texts. The tales have been selected to illustrate central Chaucerian themes and typical Chaucerian genres and verse forms.
During the first half of his career Shakespeare wrote most of his romantic comedies, most of his history plays, and several of his best tragedies, including Romeo and Juliet and Hamlet. We shall read a selection of these plays, paying close attention to language, character, and dramatic action. We shall also endeavor to keep in mind that Shakespeare was himself an actor and that his plays came to life on a stage. We’ll demystify the plays and make them accessible to modern readers. Two exams during the course, a final, and a term paper.
Close study of six or seven plays from Shakespeare’s last decade of full-time employment, from Twelfth Night (1602) to The Tempest (1611) with emphasis on the major tragedies. Lectures will touch on Shakespeare’s theater, his contemporaries, and their shared language and culture; they will lead up to film clips and discussions in large and small groups. Requirements include quizzes, in-class writing, a researched essay, and mid-term and final exams.
- TR 2:00-3:15 p.m.
- Language Emphasis
The course will provide a general overview of the TESL profession covering prominent theories, methodologies, and procedures influencing the field. Students will participate in mock lessons, tutoring sessions, and observations. The course is one of the four courses comprising the Teaching English as a Global Language Certificate.
Queen Victoria’s “Age of Empire”: the phrase conjures up the optimism and progress that began in the technological triumphs after the Industrial Revolution, that continued with the nineteenth-century scientific discoveries, and that culminated in an empire on which “the sun never set.” But the age also was associated with unsettling cultural transformations, poverty and crime, repression and narrow moralism. We will read selected works of fiction, poetry, and drama that bear on issues of empire, self, identity and vocation, considering how these writers helped to shape the world we have inherited. You will have a research writing assignment, tests, and final.
- TR 2:00-3:15 p.m.
Sartre expressed the basic tenets of his Existentialist philosophy in novels, plays, essays, political position papers and theory, and in his most famous work, “Being and Nothingness,” which he wrote and published during the early years of WWII. This course will be a study of many of the diverse forms Sartre’s existentialism took. His most famous play, “No Exit,” and another play “The Flies,” will be included, as will his novel, “Nausea” and the short stories in “The Wall.” Excerpts from “Being and Nothingness” and “The Critique of Dialectical Reason” will also be included. When he died, 30,000 people attended his funeral. Like Voltaire and Rousseau before him he was a philosopher who had large following among the general population around the world.
Three essays, 5 to 10 pages, and a take-home final will be required.
- MW 6:30-7:45 p.m.
This course will be devoted to reading and to analyzing works by Nobel Laureates of Literature from the Americas, Europe, Africa, and Asia. We will examine how these laureates made major creative contributions to world literature and to international reception of their nations’ literary aesthetics. We will emphasize the relationship of global modernism to traditional arts, performance, and ritual, as well as to the construction of cultural myths of place and identity. We will observe how authors forge new theoretical reflections on gender, race, and class, as well as expressing new histories of their cultures. Authors may include: William Faulkner, Pablo Neruda, Gabriel García Márquez, Wole Soyinka, Nadine Gordimer, Kenzaburo Oe, Dario Fo, Mo Yan, Alice Munro, Patrick Modiano, and Bob Dylan. The final classes will be devoted to the latest winner of the Nobel Prize in Literature.
- TR 3:00-4:15 p.m.
This course will examine modern British literature from Hardy to Beckett, focusing on techniques and themes in order to explore the phenomenon that came to be known as modernism. We will begin with a theoretical discussion about the question of the modern and its relationship to modernism. Several texts, novels, short stories, poems, and plays, will be chosen from the works of the following authors: Hardy, Conrad, Yeats, Joyce, Woolf, Ford Madox Ford, Orwell, and Beckett. We will be moving back and forth between primary texts to secondary ones (theories of modernism, theories of the modern, theories of form, and theories of gender, and so to their implications for form and content). The course will analyze, through a combination of lecture and discussion, the technical innovations deployed in a given text, the intellectual and historical contexts that make possible these innovations, the world-views that the text affirms or critiques, and the implications of the stances it suggests for that society.
Requirements: quizzes, class-participation, a mid-term exam, a term paper, and a final exam.
- MW 3:30-4:45 p.m.
In this course, we will examine the American genre of film noir. We will begin with the origins of detective fiction and then, we will concentrate upon the hard-boiled detective novel, its reliance upon older narrative traditions, its modernist elements, and its structure as the basis for film noir. We will examine the history of the term film noir and how film noir constitutes a genre. We will analyze the use of lighting, setting, mise-en-scène, and camera angles to create the particular visual style of film noir. We will also explore how these visual techniques emphasize pervasive modernist themes in film noir. Additionally, we will place these films within their social and historical contexts. Films may include: John Huston's The Maltese Falcon; Billy Wilder's Double Indemnity; Edward Dmytryk's Murder, My Sweet; Fritz Lang's The Big Heat; Stanley Kubrick's The Killing; Jules Dassin's The Naked City; Robert Wise’s Odd Against Tomorrow; Carl Franklin's Devil In A Blue Dress; and the Coen Brothers' The Big Lebowski and No Country for Old Men.
- TR 11:00 a.m.-12:15 p.m.
American poets were instrumental in shaping the movement known as modernism. Stressing experiment and innovation, their work challenged conventional conceptions of poetry, creating a hyper-textual space in which competing idioms, discourses, and models of social and political action could jostle freely. (Contemporary poetry, especially so-called “composition by field,” is very much an outgrowth of modernist practice.) We will focus on the work of such major American modernist poets as Eliot, Pound, Williams, H.D., Stevens, Moore, and Crane. We will stress close reading of individual poems but will also explore modernism as a program of literary and cultural innovation. Requirements: three short papers (3-5 pp. each), or two short papers plus a journal of imitations; a final exam.
Tragedy is violent, visceral, ethically fraught. It is an ancient Greek innovation that continues to impassion audiences, dramatists, novelists, philosophers, social theorists, and literary critics (for instance, Hegel, Nietzsche, Freud, Benjamin, Adorno, Heidegger, Schmitt, Lacan, Foucault, Derrida, Irigaray, Žižek, Nussbaum, Carson, and Butler). Tragedy raises the question of how individuals, cultures, and works of art understand loss and catastrophe. It brings power inequities to the fore. In this course, we will traverse ancient history, politics, and ethics, as well as contemporary feminist, queer, and performance theories. We will grapple with the fundamental issues of personhood at stake in tragedy: how is character formed? How do characters behave under duress? Do tragic heroes and heroines "get what they deserve" or far from it? Why do audiences take pleasure in watching fictional people suffer?
We will spend half of our course in the ancient world (in Greece and Rome); here we will read plays by Aeschylus, Sophocles, Euripides, and Seneca, alongside modern writers' notes on them. We'll take stock of the “ancient quarrel” between tragedy and philosophy, in which Plato calls literature morally dangerous. We'll see how ancient and modern tragedies represent heroism, self-knowledge, autonomy, love, disability, war, and family. In the second half of our seminar, we will see how modern thinkers have viewed, inherited, and reimagined tragedy. Reading drama, philosophy, anthropology, and novels, we will focus on nineteenth- and twentieth-century writers who conceive of tragedy as *the* genre of modernity. Each student will give an in-class presentation; there will be short, regular writing assignments and two longer essays.
ENGL 496A Colonial and Postcolonial Fiction Raval
- 496-005 (English Honors Section)
This course will deal with several major colonial and postcolonial novels, focusing on issues at stake in contemporary discussions of these works. Among the novelists to be included are Conrad, Forster, Achebe, Mukherjee, Kincaid, Naipaul, and Coetzee. Nearly all the novels are quite short and are chosen to focus on larger cultural and political contexts and problems they explore. We will also read some portions of Edward Said’s Orientalism and a selection of some short but important theoretical essays. The goal will be to examine these novels from the perspective of various major postcolonial concepts about identity, nationalism, and globalization among a host of others. Each student will write ONE 1-page, single space commentary on each novel, a term paper, one class presentation, a mid-term exam, and a final exam. (Antigone Books at 411 N 4th Ave will have all required books for this course.).
In 1948, the Empire-Windrush sailed from Jamaica to London, carrying the first members of an entire generation of emigrants from Britain’s colonial empire who would revitalize and irrevocably change the course of post-war literature in England and in English. This course will consider a group of authors from the 1950s to the present whose work has shaped the landscape of writing in Britain by exploring a range of emigrant experiences, the entanglement of race and empire, colonial and post-independence histories, experimenting with a variety of new fictional and poetic forms, and imagining into being new forms of citizenship and communal experience.
While we will begin with the Caribbean and the Windrush trajectory, we will move forward chronologically and outward geographically to read authors from a variety of backgrounds; this will give us a sense of the sheer breadth of post-Windrush and post-empire literature and culture (and will include brief excursions into the visual arts, broadcasting, and music). Course authors may include: Sam Selvon, George Lamming, Bernardine Evaristo, Zadie Smith, Buchi Emechta, Stuart Hall, Salman Rushdie, Jean Binta Breeze, Patience Agbabi and others. Our reading list will be in part determined by students’ interests as they develop research projects over the course of the semester.