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Fall Courses

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PLEASE NOTE THAT COURSE AVAILABILITY AND TIMES CHANGE FREQUENTLY. CHECK BACK OFTEN FOR UPDATES.  IN THE CASE OF DISCREPANCIES, WEBADVISOR ALWAYS TAKES PRECEDENCE OVER SCHEDULES POSTED ON THIS WEBSITE.

 


 

FALL 2020 

 

ENG 100-01: Films Adapting Fiction
Michael Mirabile
MWF 9:15-10:15

This course is designed to provide skills useful for the close reading and analysis of films and works of modern literature.  Establishing parallels between literary and cinematic arts, we will reflect on the adaptation by film directors and screenwriters of works of fiction: the movement or transition from page to screen.  We will also examine how models of criticism are shaped by formal features integral to the art of the cinema (cinematography, editing, performance, special effects, etc.).  Among the recurring topics that we will address over the length of the semester are: genre, spectatorship, gender, narrative, identification, intertextuality, and postmodernism.  A central aim of the course is to specify the conventions of a variety of literary and cinematic genres: the thriller, crime fiction and film noir / neo-noir, the Gothic or horror story, science fiction, and meta-cinema or critical cinema (films about other films). Special emphasis will be placed on “free” or “distant” adaptations of works of fiction, on films that creatively rethink and reimagine the contents of the original source material - and rethink the very concept of “adaptation.”

Prerequisites: None; 4 semester credits

ENG 105-01:  The Art of the Novel
Lyell Asher
TTH 9:50-11:20

Major works in English, American, and European fiction, from the 17th century to the present. Goals include increasing awareness of the particular kinds of knowledge and perception that the novel makes available; considering the variety of ways in which novels braid moral and aesthetic concerns; understanding how novels respond both to everyday human experience and to previous literary history; and heightening appreciation for the range of pleasures that the novel can afford. Writers may include Cervantes, Sterne, Austen, Flaubert, Kafka, Woolf, Nabokov, Kundera, Pynchon.

Prerequisites: None; 4 semester credits


ENG 200-F1: Fiction Writing 1
Pauls Toutonghi
MWF 10:25-11:25

The first in a sequence, this class studies the work of 25 contemporary fiction writers. These stories pair with weekly craft exercises, which consider story writing through the lens of scene structure, subtext in dialogue, and a variety of other viewpoints. By semester’s end, students
write and revise a complete short story.

Prerequisites: None; 4 semester credits


ENG 200-F2: Fiction Writing 1
Don Waters
MWF 1:00-2:00

The first in a sequence, this class studies the work of 25 contemporary fiction writers. These stories pair with weekly craft exercises, which consider story writing through the lens of scene structure, subtext in dialogue, and a variety of other viewpoints. By semester’s end, students write and revise a complete short story.

Prerequisites: None; 4 semester credits


ENG 201-F1: Introduction to Poetry and Poetry Writing
Jerry Harp
TTH 2:10-3:40 

Elements of poetry such as imagery, rhythm, tone. Practice in the craft. Frequent references to earlier poets.

Prerequisites: None; 4 semester credits

 

ENG 203-01: Nonfiction Writing 1
Pauls Toutonghi
MWF 11:40-12:40

Nonfiction writing has evolved over the past 50 years, as a kind of “new journalism” has pushed writers to bring the personal and subjective into the work they do. We will read examples of personal essays, memoirs, narratives, and investigative journalism. The curriculum is mostly contemporary, with nods to the history of the form, throughout the centuries. Weekly reading and writing exercises, and a long-form work as a portfolio.

Prerequisites: None; 4 semester credits

 

ENG 205-F1: Major Periods and Issues in English Literature
Karen Gross
MWF
9:15-10:15
                                                                                            

Introduction to ways of reading and writing about literature; historical development of English literature. Middle Ages to the end of the 18th century.

Prerequisites: None; 4 semester credits

 

ENG 205-F2: Major Periods and Issues in English Literature
William Pritchard 
MWF 10:30-11:30                                                                                    

Introduction to ways of reading and writing about literature; historical development of English literature. Middle Ages to the end of the 18th century.

Prerequisites: None; 4 semester credits

 

ENG 206-F1: Major Periods and Issues in English Literature
Rishona Zimring 
MWF 1:00-2:00

Introduction to ways of reading and writing about literature; historical development of literature in English. Romantic period to the present.

Prerequisites: None; 4 semester credits

 

ENG 235-F1: Animals & Animal Rights in Literature
Kurt Fosso
MWF 1:00-2:00

Investigation of animal being and rights in English/Anglophone poetry and fiction circa 1700-2000, including S. T. Coleridge’s The Rime of the Ancient Mariner, Anna Sewell’s Black Beauty, and J. M. Coetzee’s Lives Of Animals (with some relevant recent theory, too). We’ll explore what these and other key narratives reveal about the complexity and ethical perplexity of our relationships to non-human creatures, and the challenging, uncanny vistas to which such depictions of animals and animal rights may lead.

Prerequisites: None; 4 semester credits

ENG 240-F1: The Brontës: Legends and Legacies
Andrea Hibbard
MWF 11:45-12:45

Exploration of the mythology that has attached itself to Charlotte, Emily, and Anne Brontë, including how they simultaneously contributed to and distanced themselves from mid-Victorian literary culture, as well as negotiated cultural expectations and anxieties about the growing feminization of the novel. Includes reading of their novels, letters, journal entries, poems, and juvenilia.

Prerequisites: None; 4 semester credits


ENG 300-01: Fiction Writing 2
Pauls Toutonghi
MWF 1:00-2:00

The second in a sequence, this class shifts from the reading of contemporary fiction to the emulation of these models, and students’ creation of their own work. Some exercises and free-writes are assigned, but the bulk of the course is focused on generating short stories to be workshopped by the class. The readings focus on the process of writing itself and its psychology.

Prerequisites: ENG 200; 4 semester credits

Restrictions: Junior standing or consent required.

 

ENG 301-01: Poetry Writing
Jerry Harp
MW 6:00PM-7:30PM

Discussion of student work with occasional reference to work by earlier poets. Students develop skills as writers and readers of poetry.



Prerequisites: ENG 201; 4 semester credits
Restrictions: Junior standing or consent required.


ENG 312-01: The Early English Novel
William Pritchard
MWF 11:45-12:45

The process by which, over the course of the 18th century, the novel became Britain’s preeminent genre. Topics include the relation of novel to romance, debates over the morality of fiction, claims of novels not to be novels, women as readers and writers, and the period’s various subgenres (e.g., epistolary novel, gothic novel, sentimental novel). Possible authors include Aphra Behn, Daniel Defoe, Eliza Haywood, Samuel Richardson, Henry Fielding, Charlotte Lennox, Laurence Sterne, Tobias Smollett, Horace Walpole, Frances Burney, Jane Austen.

Prerequisites: None; 4 semester credits
Restrictions: Junior standing or consent required.

 

ENG 319-01: Postcolonial Literature: Anglophone Africa, India, Caribbean
Rishona Zimring
MWF 10:25-11:25

Literary works and essays exploring the literary and cultural issues that arise from the questioning and collapse of the colonial world order. Topics include decolonization and national allegories; authenticity and the invention of tradition; constructions of race; the role of women in empire and the nation; adolescence and the novel of education; Western travel and primitivism; violence and trauma. Authors include Chinua Achebe, Kwame Anthony Appiah, Aime Cesaire, J.M. Coetzee, Tsitsi Dangarembga, E.M. Forster, Una Marson, Arundhati Roy, Jean Rhys, Salman Rushdie, Edward Said.

Prerequisites: None; 4 semester credits
Restrictions: Junior standing or consent required. 

 

ENG 326-01: African American Literature
Rachel Cole
TTH 9:50-11:20

In this class, we will study the African American literary tradition from slavery through the present. Topics will include the particularity and plurality of the African American experience; black authors’ participation in and departures from the broader tradition of American literature; and discussion of what it means to define oneself and one’s community, other people and their communities, or a literary tradition with reference to race. Authors may include Wheatley, Douglass, Jacobs, Sejour, Washington, Du Bois, Chesnutt, Hughes, Bennett, Toomer, Larsen, Ellison, Baldwin, Wright, Brooks, Giovanni, Baraka, Lorde, Morrison, Butler, Cole, Dove, Trethewey, Smith.

Prerequisites: None; 4 semester credits
Restrictions: Junior standing or consent required.

 

ENG 330-01: Chaucer
Karen Gross
MWF 2:10-3:10

The poetry of Chaucer in its literary, historical, social, and religious contexts. Topics may include the relationship between the sacred and the profane, the representations of men and women in 14th-century English society, the rise of the vernacular in the later Middle Ages, medieval attitudes toward poetry and authorship, the influence of continental European literary forms on English traditions, manuscript culture and ways of reading and writing before the advent of printing, the characteristics of different medieval literary genres, and the critical reception of Chaucer. Readings, predominantly from The Canterbury Tales, are in Middle English.

Prerequisites: None; 4 semester credits
Restrictions: Junior standing or consent required.

 

ENG 331: Shakespeare: Early Works
Lyell Asher

TTH 11:45-1:15

Critical reading of plays representative of the development of Shakespeare’s comedies, histories, and tragedies. Usually covers six or seven plays and selected poetry, typically including The Merchant of Venice, All’s Well That Ends Well, Twelfth Night, Henry IV, Hamlet, Othello.

Prerequisites: None; 4 semester credits
Restrictions: Junior standing required.

  

ENG 450-01: John Keats
Kurt Fosso
MW 3:00-4:30

Nearing the end of his short life, John Keats advises a fellow poet, “‘Load every rift’ of your subject with ore.” Keats would write little more. But it is advice he himself had taken in his journeyman’s career, and notably in his annus mirabilis of 1819, when he composed most of the poems that secured his fame and his enduring place among the English poets—as he hoped. Keats is indeed one of the all-time great crafters of poetry, and to study his work is to engage in his “ore”-filled vein of figurative leaps and puns, odd tropes and allusions, philosophical depths, and, as he said of Wordsworth, the “dark passages” of human life and its discontent. In fact, for Keats it is only “those to whom the miseries of the world are misery, and will not let them rest,” who fulfill the vital vocation of poet.

Although we’ll read poems from throughout Keats’s brief career, we shall focus especially on the mature poems of 1819, including the great Odes. We’ll also read many of his letters, in which he provides his literary-poetic theories as well as his observations about life in a time of political, artistic, and other struggles and crises. We’ll indeed explore how Keats is more than ‘only’ a creator of beauty (“a joy forever,” he wrote); he is, as his words about poetry suggest, a daring pioneer of the creation and discovery of truths and social meanings in a world of discontent—truths and meanings that perhaps art alone can offer.

Along with studying Keats’s poetry and selected letters, students will also read his biography and numerous critical essays. Each seminar member will write a 20-25 page paper providing a clear, substantiated, and well-researched argument focused upon one or more of the author’s poems. Near the semester’s end, students will deliver a portion of the essay’s findings in a formal, class presentation.

Prerequisites: ENG 205, ENG 206, and two 300-level literature courses; 4 semester credits
Restrictions: Senior standing required.

 

ENG 450-02: William Faulkner
Kristin Fujie
TTH 11:30-1:00

One of the most innovative, challenging, and, at times, funny writers of the twentieth century, William Faulkner has left us with a diverse body of work that holds rich rewards for courageous and patient readers. Of the nineteen novels Faulkner wrote, we’ll study just a few. We’ll almost certainly read The Sound and the Fury (1929) and Absalom, Absalom! (1936)—bookends to the seven-year period during which Faulkner developed the narrative techniques that enabled him to probe the volatile nexus of gender, race, class, and sexuality at the heart of his most powerful writings. To these we will add an additional novel, some short stories, and/or—depending on student interest—a text by another author who is in dynamic conversation with Faulkner’s work. We will also read a selective sampling of Faulkner criticism in order to get a sense of how Faulkner has been read, and why his writings have proven so generative for literary critics of all stamps. This will help to prepare you for your major creative task of the semester, which will be to write a 20~25 page paper that presents an original reading of one or more Faulkner texts, and also enters into dialogue with some thread of scholarly debate on Faulkner’s work.

Prerequisites: ENG 205, ENG 206, and two 300-level literature courses; 4 semester credits
Restrictions: Senior standing required. 

 

ENG 450-03: Modernist Short Stories
Rishona Zimring
T/TH 1:50-3:20

 

Modernist writers published brilliant short stories in an era when beautifully designed journals or “little magazines” provided vital opportunities to experiment with language and artistic expression. The word “magazine” comes to English from French, Italian, and ultimately Arabic: its original meaning is “storehouse.” This seminar considers the modernist magazine as a storehouse: an archival trove of artistic treasures awaiting rediscovery. We will consider modernist short stories as profoundly imaginative works of art and the publishing collaborations that brought them to audiences who were variously puzzled, appreciative, shocked, and transformed. Our reading includes dazzling short stories by modernist writers such as Virginia Woolf, Katherine Mansfield, and James Joyce, alongside affiliated short literary forms such as: fable, parable, fairy tale, ghost story, sketch, vignette, lyric poem, and prose poem. We will also read recent scholarship on modernist print cultures: the cultural history of modernist books, journals, pamphlets, magazines, and manifestos. Students will acquire research skills in order to study modernist materials such as specific issues of magazines to unpack and illuminate the diversity of expressive styles (including visual art, cinema, dance, advertising, and fashion) that intermingled in them, and the creative friendships, communities, and professional affiliations that brought them into existence. In addition to developing a research project culminating in an oral presentation and a term paper, students will co-curate a digital exhibit of modernist short works and publishing processes, sharing their research, in collaboration with Watzek Library’s Special Collections archive.

Prerequisites: ENG 205, ENG 206, and two 300-level literature courses; 4 semester credits

Restrictions: Senior standing required. 


Please view the Senior Seminar tab on this website for ENG 450 registration information.