DEPARTMENT OF ENGLISH
COURSE DESCRIPTIONS FOR
(excluding ENG 101, 102, 105, 203, 204, 205)
The undergraduate major program in
English requires students to take ENG 330 (Text & Context), one Language module
course (210, 211 or 310), four 300-level Literature modules courses (two in
British Literature, two in American Literature), and four additional courses
from the Area modules, at least two of which must be drawn from one Area
module. In addition, all majors must complete a one-hour capstone
course, taken concurrently with an Area module course. The Area modules
are: Literature, Film & Media, Writing, Imaginative Writing, Language
Study, Theory, Education. A complete description of the English major
is available in the English Advising Office (1227
The English Advising Office in
The English Advising Office will be open Monday – Friday, from and throughout the Priority Registration period (March 31 – April 23). Because of the demands made upon the office during this period, appointments are required. Appointments with the advisors – Meg Marquis, Julie Walter, and Christine Luft – can be made by contacting staff associate Andy Johnson in 1227 P.O.T. or by phone: (859) 257-3763. Students are strongly encouraged to see the advisors as early as possible, preferably a week before their registration time. Please note that students in Arts and Sciences will not be able to register without having seen an advisor and having the advisor hold lifted.
Note on registration for writing courses (ENG 207, 305, 407, 507, and 607): Students wishing to take these courses should advance register for them and attend the first class meetings. These students should be aware, however, that (as stated in the UK Catalog) ultimate enrollment in the courses will be by consent of instructor, given after the first class meeting (thus, registration for the course does not guarantee a place on the final roll).
ENG 207-001 M Howell
BEGINNING WORKSHOP IN IMAGINATIVE WRITING: POETRY
Description not available at time of publication. Please contact the instructor or check back here for updated information.
ENG 207-002 M
BEGINNING WORKSHOP IN IMAGINATIVE WRITING: FICTION
Students will be invited to read their work aloud in class for practice and for gentle critique by fellow students. English 207 Fiction is an introductory course that prepares students for the more advanced English 407 and 507 creative writing courses.
ENG 207-003 T Edwards
BEGINNING WORKSHOP IN IMAGINATIVE WRITING: FICTION
This is an introductory undergraduate course designed to
explore the writing of fiction, especially the short story. Students will
focus on the essential elements of fiction, including imagery, voice,
character, setting, the use of language, and narrative form. At times we will
draw on the rich genres of poetry and drama to enhance our discussions of
language, imagery, and dialogue. Students will look at both traditional and
experimental story forms, will explore these forms in their own writing, and
will participate fully in a supportive workshop setting, giving and receiving
thoughtful criticism, which will be used as a basis for revision. This is a
writing class, and that will be our focus, but since reading and writing are
a symbiotic pair, each essential to the other, we will also take close,
analytical look at published work, seeking to understand the forms and
unravel the process of creation. The class will be organized as a writing
workshop, in which you will have a chance to present your own work, and also
the opportunity to critique the work of your peers. You will be expected not
only to take your own work seriously, but also to give fair, constructive and
helpful feedback to the other students in the class.
ENG 207-004 R Staff
BEGINNING WORKSHOP IN IMAGINATIVE WRITING:
Description not available at time of publication. Please contact the instructor or check back here for updated information.
ENG 211-001 MW Guindon
ENG 211-002 TR Guindon
ENG 211-003 TR Guindon
INTRODUCTION TO LINGUISTICS I
This course will introduce and explore the forms and structures of human language, how they are similar, how they are recorded, and how they can change over time. Significant sections of the course will cover:
–human speech sounds and how they are used (Why, for instance is ‘blaps’ a possible English word, but not ‘bspla’? Why is the ‘s’ at the end of ‘leaves’ actually pronounced as a ‘z’?)
–word-formation (Why can we form ‘reality’ out of ‘real + ity’ and ‘sanity’ out of ‘sane + ity’, but not ‘dearity’ out of ‘dear + ity?)
–sentence structure (Why is ‘pretty women and horses’ ambiguous? How are the two phrases in ‘looking sharp, looking for love’ different?)
Students can expect daily homework assignments designed to enable them to understand linguistic forms, and to deduce linguistic structures by applying methods of structural analysis to data drawn from a variety of languages. Test formats will generally be based on the homework.
ENG 211-401 TR Marks
INTRODUCTION TO LINGUISTICS I
This course is an introduction to the nature and classification of language and to the methods used in contemporary linguistic science to analyze and describe languages, with attention to the practical application of linguistics.
ENG 211-402 TR O’Hara
INTRODUCTION TO LINGUISTICS I
SCOPE of the course: Linguistics is the scientific study of human language as a system. Everyone knows a language but what does it mean to know a language? How are languages different from one another? How are they similar? This course introduces students to the various fascinating sub-fields of linguistics, focusing on the structure of human language (phonology, morphology, syntax), selected writing systems, and historical linguistics, including the historical development of the English language.
GOALS of the course: 1) To demonstrate the recurring structural patterns of language as a symbolic system. These regularities are found in every language, and occur at all levels of structure (phonology, morphology, syntax). 2) To illustrate the use and usefulness of linguistic approaches to language in the course of our everyday life: from learning how infants acquire their first language to understanding how we use language to communicate and miscommunicate with one another to understanding the complexities involved in the interaction of language and technology (eg. voice-activated products, machine translation, etc).
METHOD: Daily quizlets; quizzes on individual chapters; exams on related chapters; frequent analytical exercises from the Workbook to reinforce what has been learned in class. No cumulative mid-term or final.
TEXTS: Contemporary Linguistics, William O’Grady, et al; 4th edition. Bedford/St. Martin’s. Study Guide to accompany Contemporary Linguistics, same publisher.
ENG 212-001 TR O’Hara
ENG 212-002 TR O’Hara
INTRODUCTION TO LINGUISTICS II
PREREQUISITE: ENG/LIN 211 completed in Fall 2002 only.
PURPOSE of the course: To expand students’ knowledge of linguistics as an academic discipline through a study of various sub-fields of Applied Linguistics, focusing on the main issues and problems of interest in semantics, first and second language acquisition, psycholinguistics, neurolinguistics, sociolinguistics, and animal communication.
GOAL of the course: To demonstrate how language is acquired and used as a system communication.
LEARNING OBJECTIVE: The student will be able to analyze language data, formulate and test hypotheses, and argue persuasively for one solution over another. These skills will be developed by doing linguistic analyses: discovering patterns of acquisition and use in data drawn from English and a variety of foreign languages. Learning to do this kind of analysis is the most important part of the course.
METHOD: Daily quizlets; quizzes on individual chapters; exams on related chapters; frequent analytical exercises to reinforce what has been learned in class. No cumulative mid-term or final.
Linguistics, William O’Grady, et al; 4th edition. Bedford/St.
Martin’s; the Workbook is NOT required for this course.
1) No overrides will be given for this course.
2) A section of ENG/LIN 212 will be offered during the 4-Week Summer Session.
ENG 230-001 TR White
INTRODUCTION TO LITERATURE: CONNECTIONS - Theatre of the Absurd.
A close examination of some seminal works of the absurd theater and of its sources. Plays by Beckett, Ionesco, Pinter, and Genet. The literary and intellectual roots of the absurd in dada, symbolism, surrealism and silent film. Absurdist drama brought the forces of the unconscious and the irrational to the stage, creating a different dramatic form to express them. Absurdist drama depicted the individual suffering loss of identity and an inability to achieve a relatedness in a world increasingly atomized, mechanized, and depersonalized. Three papers, mid-term and final.
ENG 230-002 TR Reese
INTRODUCTION TO LITERATURE: MADNESS IN MODERN LITERATURE
This course will examine representations of madness in twentieth century American and British Literature. Through the chosen texts and supplemental handouts, we will explore the development of popular conceptions of what it means to be “mentally ill” and the ramifications of a variety of terminologies, such as: madness, lunacy, neurosis, psychosis, idiocy, and insanity. This is not to suggest that we will be “diagnosing” the characters of these texts, but that we will be discussing the ways in which mental illness has changed from the “stark raving lunatic” to the “medicated Everyman.” Ultimately, this class seeks to discover the social implications of the continuously changing definitions of madness. Some of the questions this course will consider include: How have our cultural perceptions of mental illness changed over time? What have been the sources of stigma related to mental illness, and how current and persistent are they? How does literature perpetuate and/or counteract this stigma? How have representations of treatment and their relative “successes” historically reflected perceptions of mental illness?
ENG 230-003 MWF Prats
INTRODUCTION TO LITERATURE: WAR IN LITERATURE AND FILM
Move over, CNN, Fox News, History Channel! An
investigation, based on readings and film screenings of the moral and
cultural paradoxes of war: why, for instance, are nations most united and
inspired just before they set out to destroy other nations? Why is it that
stories of war—studies of destroying other civilizations or cultures—so often
constitute the bases of cultures, of civilizations? How do the passions of
war justify killing in the name of
a nation’s loftiest ideals?
ENG 230-004 TR Fulbrook
INTRODUCTION TO LITERATURE: METAMORPH0SIS
This course will provide a means to become acquainted not only with literature from a broad range of historical periods, but with a wide array of methodologies for reading and analysis. In this introductory class there will be danger and domesticity, fairy-tales and fashion, monsters of science and dramas of the drawing room, physical feats of amazement and psychological thrills abounding at every step of the way as experts, novices, and scientists, play-writes, poets and novelists metamorphose mythology, history, and literature right before your eyes, changing statues into women, squashed cabbage leaves into ladies, beautiful men into grotesque works of art, and the haunting memories of slavery into a ghostly twentieth-century novel. In this course, bodies and narratives, history and fantasy, dreams and nightmares are resurrected and reborn again and again through a selection of texts chosen for their investment in both stories of metamorphosis and the metamorphosis of story across a variety of literary genres and historical periods. Next to the writings of the Brothers Grimm, for example, we will study Anne Sexton's and Angela Carter's erotic and feminist retellings of these well known fairy tales for children into twentieth-century poems and short-stories for adults. Next to Ovid's Metamorphosis, we will consider After Ovid and discover ancient mythology rewritten and transformed into our modern day world by contemporary poets who return to Ovid's stories only to find that in the return the tales he tells are no longer the same . Exploring texts such as “Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde” and Oscar Wilde’s The Picture of Dorian Gray, William Shakespeare's The Winter's Tale and Bernard Shaw's Pygmalion we will journey in this course through readings and class discussions designed to offer you a chance to get your feet wet with a variety of literary genres, historical fields, and critical approaches to literary study. Our general thematic, loosely defined, will be metamorphosis -- bodily, psychic, historical, generic, critical, etc.--and we will consider plays, novels, fairy-tales, and poems which in one way or another turn upon this issue either at the level of "plot," by telling a tale about transformation, or at a more meta-textual level by retelling, reimagining, and reconfiguring earlier sites of literary creation. The course requirements will likely include two 5-8 page papers, a revision, an annotated bibliography, and a final, group project.
ENG 230-005 MWF Godbey
INTRODUCTION TO LITERATURE: THE CITY
This class takes as its central concern the trope of the city in American fiction. The image of the modern metropolis has long served as an opportunity for American authors to explore the dual nature of place as both a physical location and as a concept that embodies a host of competing ideologies and representations (democracy and the great melting pot vs. segregation, the image of opportunity vs. the reality of class and economic discrimination, etc.). We will look at literary (and cinematic) representations of the modern American metropolis that embody these dichotomies and demonstrate the city’s ability to affect change and alter – for better or for worse – individual identities. As sociologists first began to note during the early decades of the 20th Century, the city is a perfect laboratory for the study of human nature and social processes. Drawing from this idea we will approach the city as both fact and symbol, while at the same time using representations of the city to explore larger issues of American identity, race, class, and gender.
Some of the questions/issues this course will explore are:
n How has the development of the city affected modern identity?
n How has the city been positioned as both the embodiment of, and an impediment to, democratic ideals?
n How do representations of the city contrast with rural settings and what does this contrast reveal about competing American mythologies?
n Shifting images of the city. How do contemporary literary representations differ, if at all, from their past counterparts? What can we learn from this shifting image?
Possible Texts –
Maggie a Girl of the Streets (1893) – Stephen Crane
Sister Carrie (1901) – Theodore Dreiser
O Pioneers! (1913) – Willa Cather
Native Son (1940) – Richard Wright
Wise Blood (1952) – Flannery O’Connor
Another Country (1960) – James Baldwin
Mao II (1993) – Don Delillo
Three (3) papers and a Midterm
ENG 230-006 MWF Carter
INTRODUCTION TO LITERATURE: BANNED BOOKS: FROM HUCKLEBERRY TO HOLDEN TO HARRY
Why are school districts and some parents afraid of Harry Potter, Huckleberry Finn or others? Why are certain works and their characters’ words either avoided or expurgated to gain admittance into the corridors of learning? This course will open these works and examine the historical, social, and cultural reasons for the books being challenged in the past or today. Poems such as Whitman’s “Leaves of Grass” and Ginsberg’s “Howl” have rallied opponents to suppress their inclusion in anthologies, Maya Angelou’s caged bird can’t sing and Huckleberry still is asking questions about heaven over a hundred years later. We’ll try to redeem or reject these texts through close readings and research into the complaints about the books and into the themes of the texts. Coursework will include daily readings, two 5-7 page papers, and other shorter writing assignments.
ENG 231-001 MWF Purdue
LITERATURE AND GENRE: NARRATIVES OF THE ROAD IN CONTEMPORARY AMERICAN LITERATURE
In this course we will explore road narratives in
American literature and
ENG 231-002 MWF Zunshine
LITERATURE AND GENRE: THE NOVEL
This course follows the development of the novel as a genre from 200 A.D. to 1998. Topics to be considered: the relationship between the novel and the romance; the novel in history and the history of the novel; parody and intertextuality; the novel and popular culture. The reading list features Longus's Daphnis and Chloe, Heliodorus's An Ethiopian Romance, Fielding's Tom Jones, Austen’s Emma, Nabokov's Lolita, and McEwan's Atonement. This is a demanding class. Each novel on the list is challenging in a different way, and several of them pose difficult questions that we may not be able to answer. Course requirements include short bi-weekly papers, two longer papers, a midterm, and a final.
ENG 231-401 M Oaks
LITERATURE AND GENRE: DETECTIVE FICTION
Down these mean streets a man must go who is not himself mean, who is neither tarnished nor afraid. The detective in this kind of story must be such a man. He is the hero; he is everything. He must be a complete man and a common man and yet an unusual man. He must be . . . a man of honor—by instinct, by inevitability, without thought of it and certainly without saying. He must be the best man in his world and a good enough man for any world.
Raymond Chandler, The Simple Art of Murder
We are concerned then in the whodunit with two stories of which one is absent but real, the other present but insignificant.
Tzvetan Todorov, The Poetics of Prose
Few genres have enjoyed the popularity of detective fiction. Drawing on the Gothic (with its emphasis on the grotesque, the mysterious, and the desolate), narratives of detection inform many nineteenth and twentieth century texts as well as compose their own separate literary identity. However, as the detective story “took off” commercially in the middle of the last century, the figure of the detective also abandoned the strictly white male heterosexual aspect which had defined the tradition (without encompassing the complexity) of the genre.
This course will sample the field of detective stories examining both the landmarks which provide a legacy for this literary type and the horizons which reveal its expansive potential. Some possible “landmark” writers include E. A. Poe (The Murders in the Rue Morgue/The Mystery of Marie Roget), Sir Arthur Conan Doyle (The Hound of the Baskervilles/The Sign of Four), Raymond Chandler (The Big Sleep), and Agatha Christie (Murder at the Vicarage or Murder on the Orient Express); while Barbara Neely (Blanche on the Lam), Sherman Alexie (Indian Killer), and Barbara Wilson (Sisters of the Road or Gaudi Afternoon) constitute some of the writers on the “horizon.”
Students will write two papers, one shorter (5-6 pages) and one longer (9-10 pages). In addition, class participation and peer review will figure prominently in the course.
ENG 232-001 TR MacDonald
LITERATURE AND PLACE: SHAKESPEARE’S
The English Renaissance was fascinated by ancient
ENG 232-401 M Dathorne
LITERATURE AND PLACE:
Description not available at time of publication. Please contact the instructor or check back here for updated information.
ENG 233-001 MWF Bebensee
LITERATURE AND IDENTITIES: EMERSON AND AMERICAN TRANSCENDENTALISM
course will consider Transcendentalism as the springboard for the first
distinctly American forays into intellectual culture: social and religious
reform, philosophy, literature, ecology, and spiritualism. With Emerson’s Self-Reliance
essay as our central text, we’ll focus on the construction of personal and
national (or anti-national) identities in writers like Emerson, Thoreau, Margaret
Fuller, Bronson Alcott, and Walt Whitman. We’ll also read
Nathaniel, The Blithedale Romance.
Myerson, Joel, ed. Transcendentalism: A Reader.
ENG 234-001 MWF
INTRODUCTION TO WOMEN’S LITERATURE: AMERICAN WOMEN WRITERS
English 234 is a survey of American women’s writing. In this course, we will focus on women and work, identity formation, and sexuality. We will begin in the 1920s and work our way through the 1990s. Possible readings for this course include Nella Larson’s Passing (1929), Zora Neal Hurston’s Their Eyes Were Watching God (1937), Lillian Smith’s Strange Fruit (1944), Shirley Jackson’s Life Among the Savages (1953), Toni Morrison’s The Bluest Eye (1970), and Barbara Ehrenreich’s Nickel and Dimed (2001).
ENG 234-002 TR Staff
INTRODUCTION TO WOMEN’S LITERATURE: WOMEN WRITERS
ENG 262-001 and -002 MWF and MWF
SURVEY OF WESTERN WORLD LITERATURE: THE ENLIGHTENMENT TO THE PRESENT
This course surveys Western World literature from the Enlightenment to the present, focusing upon works of great literary merit which represent main elements in the evolving western culture. In this course we will engage the ideas and examine the evolving world view of these three hundred years, relating our discussions to our own ideas and values. There will be three examinations, one paper and a number of short writing assignments.
ENG 262 – DISTANCE LEARNING UEBEL
SURVEY OF WESTERN WORLD LITERATURE: THE ENLIGHTENMENT TO THE PRESENT
Like ENG 261, this is a television course based on the PBS program "Living Literature: The Classics and You," involving one hour‑long television class per week. Student work will be web‑based, and will involve short exercises in addition to a midterm and a final.
We will study several of the primary literary texts that have shaped Western culture from the Enlightenment to modernity. Readings include: Voltaire’s Candide, Goethe’s Faust, Flaubert’s Madame Bovary, Dostoyevsky’s Crime and Punishment, Tolstoy’s The Death of Ivan Ilych, and Kafka’s Metamorphosis. Themes emerging during the course will include: the problem of identity, the problem of ethical codes and value systems, the problem of society formation, God, dieties, and religion, illusion and reality, and art and the artist.
003 MWF 12:00-12:50 pm
004 MWF 2:00-2:50 pm Tweedy
ENG 270-001 MWF 8:00-8:50 am Lewin
THE BIBLE AS LITERATURE
This course is an introduction to the study of the Hebrew Bible. Students will learn the analytical techniques with which scholars understand biblical materials and apply these to issues of authorship, translation, and narrative continuity. We will consider the texts before us as literary artifacts and not as the basis of religious doctrine.
ENG 281-001 MWF 12:00-12:50 pm Fisher
INTRODUCTION TO FILM: NARRATIVES OF DISINTEGRATION
The films in this course depict human (and, in some cases, nonhuman) conflicts. I use the term disintegration to illustrate this conflict, which may be examined culturally, historically, socially, aesthetically, spiritually, ecologically, and so on. For example, we can picture the process or narrative of disintegration as a vortex, which is a continuous cycle of rapid swirling, spiraling, whirling matter, often made up of air or water. In the films we’ll explore, the vortex is often aesthetically represented through specific scenes of chaos and disorder.
While the study of the technical aspects of filmmaking and an exploration of various genres will be a part of this course, we will pay particular attention to how we read these narratives of disintegration as texts: aesthetically, culturally, psychologically, and so on. We will consider the significance of isolation, fear, obsession, time, technology, etc., in terms of disintegration and in terms of how these films connect with each other on some level as a continual exchange of ideas, as part of a larger vortex of images and situations developed by filmmakers from the United States to the United Kingdom, from silent films to CGI-laden films. In addition, I’d like to spend “extra” time with directors who frequent these themes of disintegration, like Terry Gilliam and David Lynch. We are not here to judge films, or to rate them, or to agree on only one interpretation. We are here to ask questions, make relevant observations, and to explore the films as a part of our international culture, history, and art.
Some of the films we will examine include: Chaplin’s Modern Times (1936); Scott’s Blade Runner (1982); Hitchcock’s Psycho (1960); Aronofsky’s Pi (1998); Bergman’s The Seventh Seal (1956); Tykwer’s Run Lola Run (1998); Nolan’s Memento (2000); Polanski’s Chinatown (1974); Gilliam’s 12 Monkeys (1995); Myrick and Sanchez’s The Blair Witch Project (1999); Pellington’s The Mothman Prophecies (2002); Lynch’s Mulholland Dr. (2001); and Fulton and Pepe’s Lost in La Mancha (2002).
ENG 281-002 TR 9:30-10:45 am Froula
INTRODUCTION TO FILM: CONSTRUCTIONS AND DISJUNCTIONS: GENDER, IDENTITY, AND THE MOVIES
Movies both instruct and reflect our cultural gender roles, i.e., how men and women should define their behavior, appearance, and sexual morés. In this course, we will examine films as cultural documents, noting not only how they construct characters’ gender and sexuality but also how gender intersects with mythologies inherent in our conceptions of heroes and anti-heroes, family, militarism, romance, and politics. Films will include Rebel Without a Cause, Bend It Like Beckham, Full Metal Jacket, Boys Don’t Cry, Chasing Amy, G.I. Jane, Thelma and Louise, and Amores Perros, among others.
ENG 306-001 TR 11:00-12:15 pm Reece
INTRODUCTION TO PROFESSIONS IN WRITING
This course attempts to answer the question, “But can I make money at this?” “Professions in Writing” offers a pragmatic introduction to the following career paths: freelance writing, editing and publishing, and teaching writing. Students will learn how to write a marketable magazine profile and query letter, how to copy-edit, and how to edit for story. We will conclude by exploring some philosophies of writing with an eye toward teaching.
LIN 317-001 MWF 2:00-2:50 Guindon
LANGUAGE AND SOCIETY: LANGUAGE CONTRACT
This course will explore the various outcomes of language contact, particularly pidgins and creoles. We will examine various theories (from past and present) of pidgin/creole origins, the languages which have contributed the most to the creation of pidgins and creoles in the past few centuries, how the structures of pidgins and creoles differ from those of languages with a more natural birth, and what the development and structures of these languages may be able to tell us about human cognition.
The primary readings for the course will be from An Introduction to Pidgins and Creoles, by John Holm, Cambridge textbooks in Linguistics, Cambridge University Press, 2000. Students should expect to take frequent quizzes throughout the semester, and will present one paper focusing on a creole language taken from a list given out at the beginning of the semester.
LIN 317-002 TR 2:00-3:15 Stump
LANGUAGE AND SOCIETY: ENDANGERED LANGUAGES
Language death is not a new phenomenon in human history. Over the past century, however, the rate of language extinctions has accelerated dramatically; according to one estimate, more than two thirds of the languages now spoken will be extinct by the end of this century. Why is this happening? Can anything be done to reverse this trend? Should anything be done? Is anything being done? How does a language die? What is the impact of a language’s death on the community in which it was traditionally spoken? Which languages are at the greatest risk of extinction? Is the spread of English as a global language a threat to minority languages? In this course, we will examine the host of issues surrounding the crisis of mass extinction with which the world’s languages are now threatened.
Coursework will include class discussion of numerous assigned readings and a term project. Texts will include Vanishing Voices: The Extinction of the World's Languages by Daniel Nettle and Suzanne Romaine; English as a Global Language by David Crystal; and assorted supplementary readings.
ENG 330-001 TR 3:30-4:45 pm Doolen
TEXT AND CONTEXT: POLITICAL RADICALISM AND JOHN DOS PASSOS’ USA TRILOGY
ENG 330 is a new course that is designed to give students an opportunity to study a single text in its literary, cultural, and historical context. Our focus this semester will be John Dos Passos’s U.S.A. trilogy, a panoramic sweep of American life in the first three decades of the twentieth century, and a work many critics have called the great American novel. The trilogy is composed of three novels—The 42nd Parallel, 1919, and The Big Money—that depict American life during a period when social upheaval and world war were transforming the nation’s democratic ideals. The prologue to U.S.A. gives you a sense of the author’s ambition:
"U.S.A. is the slice of a continent. U.S.A. is a group of holding companies, some aggregations of trade unions, a set of laws bound in calf, a radio network, a chain of moving picture theatres, a column of stockquotations rubbed out and written in by a Western Union boy on a blackboard, a public library full of old newspapers and dogeared historybooks with protests scrawled on the margins in pencil. U.S.A. is the world's greatest rivervalley fringed with mountains and hills, U.S.A. is a set of bigmouthed officials with too many bankaccounts. U.S.A. is a lot of men buried in their uniforms in Arlington Cemetary. U.S.A. is the letters at the end of an address when you are away from home. But mostly U.S.A. is the speech of the people."
Written in the 1930s, U.S.A. was a rare avant-garde work that found its inspiration in the lives of ordinary people. Dos Passos brought about this effect by experimenting with different storytelling methods: he creates authentic "newsreels" of events, popular songs, and political issues, introspective "camera eyes," biographies of popular figures, and fictional lives of the twelve major characters. The effect, as one critic aptly put it, “is something like a multimedia event within a single book.” Our aim will be to understand how such an experimental novel works to capture a nation in crisis.
We will complement our study of this montage-like method with a close look at Dos Passos’s life, read contemporary reviews of the novel, consider other fictional and non-fictional accounts of the period, reflect on world war and the question of political radicalism, write new interpretations of the epic novel, and much more. This course will stress collaboration, student participation, and essay writing.
ENG 330-002 MWF 11:00-11:50 am Prats
TEXT AND CONTEXT: HEART OF DARKNESS
To begin: a close—very close—reading of the great Conrad novel will form the basis of subsequent readings and investigations. We will follow these considerations with critical inquiries into the moral, cultural, historical, and intellectual consequences and possibilities that Conrad articulates in Heart of Darkness. We will thereafter turn our attention to the historical background of the novel through a study of the astonishing European frenzy of pillage and plunder, mayhem and murder in Africa under the Machiavellian king of Belgium, Leopold II. After a reading of King Leopold’s Ghost, we will further assess the influence and significance of Heart of Darkness through the critical readings in the Norton edition and through a reading of Chinua Achebe’s Things Fall Apart, even as we consider earlier European encounters with an Other (another Other) in short, most likely photocopied, selections from the invasions of America by Cortez, De Soto, Cabeza de Vaca, and John Smith. We will also touch briefly on early portents of Mr. Kurtz’s famous “postcriptum” to his pamphlet on the suppression of savage customs: we will study the massacres at Mystic Fort (1637), Sand Creek (1864), Wounded Knee (1890)—and thence perhaps inevitably to the fulfillment of Kurtz’s imperative in the My Lai Massacre (1968). Then to T. S. Eliot’s “The Hollow Men” (and also Yeats’s “The Second Coming”) and, under these added influences, on to two film adaptations of Heart of Darkness: Werner Herzog’s Aguirre: The Wrath of God and Francis Coppola’s Apocalypse Now and two other movies that resonate with it: Black Robe and Cabeza de Vaca. Lots of class discussion, midterm, final, final essay (8-10; preceded by formal draft).
ENG 330-003 MWF 12:00-12:50 pm Zunshine
TEXT AND CONTEXT: RICHARDS0N’S CLARISSA AND EIGHTEENTH-CENTURY ENGLISH CULTURE
Although the eighteenth century is sometimes called “The Age of Reason,” this course intends to set the record straight. The central offering is Samuel Richardson’s Clarissa, which, before the advent of the “Harry Potter” series, used to be called the longest novel in the English language. Part bildungsroman, part suspense thriller, Clarissa is the lens through which we will be viewing class and gender relationships in eighteenth-century England as well as the history of the novel as a genre. Requirements include journal-keeping, two papers, a midterm, and a final.
ENG 330-401 M 6:00-8:30 pm Meckier
TEXT AND CONTEXT: GREAT EXPECTATIONS
A detailed examination of Dickens’ thirteenth and arguably finest novel as tragicomedy, inverted fairytale (anti-Cinderella), retelling of the Misnar story from Tales of the Genii, weekly serial, autobiographical novel or bildungsroman, post-Darwin novel, etc. Discussion of penal colonies (colonialism), money and class (Haves versus Have-Nots), the virtues of self-help, the ideal of the gentleman, the two endings. Readings include David Copperfield, Frankenstein, Pendennis, A Day’s Ride, Jane Eyre, Jack Maggs. Student reports, mid-term paper, final paper.
ENG 330-402 T 6:00-8:30 pm Meckier
TEXT AND CONTEXT: BRAVE NEW WORLD
A close reading of Aldous Huxley’s signature novel in relation to his other writings about utopia in an attempt to determine his place in the modern utopian (literary) tradition. Texts include Brave New World, Ape and Essence, Brave New World Revisited, Island; Butler’s Erewhon; H.G. Wells’s The Time Machine, Men Like Gods, The First Men in the Moon, A Modern Utopia; Zamiatin’s We; Orwell’s 1984. Discussion topics involve the impact of the following upon A.F. 632: cloning, universal birth control, promiscuity, drugs, religion, poetry, heresy, onomastics, games (i.e. golf), popular culture, the BNW typescript, freedom versus happiness, Ford, Wells, Sir Alfred Mond, Freud, Pavlov, D.H. Lawrence, America. Student reports, mid-term paper, final paper.
ENG 331-001 TR 11:00-12:15 pm Kiernan
SURVEY OF BRITISH LITERATURE I
This course is a condensed survey of English literature, beginning with The Dream of the Rood, studying poetry of the Middle Ages and the Early Modern period, and concluding in the seventeenth century with excerpts from John Milton's Paradise Lost. We will discuss in class lots of poems by the men and women who composed in English over this long span and consider some of the ways these poems were preserved and transmitted.
ENG 331-002 MWF 1:00-1:50 pm Broome
SURVEY OF BRITISH LITERATURE I
Description not available at time of publication. Please contact the instructor or check the Dept. of English web site for updated information: www.uky.edu/AS/English/.
ENG 332-001 MWF 1:00-1:50 pm Tri
ENG 332-002 MWF 11:00-11:50 am Tri
SURVEY OF BRITISH LITERATURE II
ENG 332 surveys English literature from Dryden (post-Milton) to the present. Readings, lecture, and whole class discussion will focus on the major writers, with students leading occasional class forays into the poetry and prose of “lesser lights” who did not make it onto the survey syllabus but who do make us laugh, cry, think, act . . . or just make us mad. While we will try to look at our selections in new ways, students will also be expected to show some curiosity about the history, culture, social movements, and vocabulary associated with prose and poetry from the Restoration, Enlightenment, Romantic, Victorian Age, and Twentieth Century periods, and from a few great and small wars occurring along the way. Lots of reading, lecture-discussion classes, student-led activities, audio-video samplings. Quizzes when merited, mid-term and final exams, one short and one long critical paper.
ENG 333-002 MWF 9:00-9:50 am Lewin
STUDIES IN A BRITISH AUTHOR: MILTON
John Milton's poetry, prose and drama are among English literature's most radical and most memorable texts. In this course we will explore Milton's work and its decisive impact on the course of English and American literature. Special attention will be paid to Milton's influences, the cultural, political and social contexts in which he wrote. Other topics covered may include genre, censorship and free speech, free will, and gender.
ENG 333-003 TR 12:30-1:45 pm Miller
STUDIES IN A BRITISH AUTHOR: SHAKESPEARE
In this class we will read seven plays: Romeo and Juliet, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Much Ado About Nothing, The Merchant of Venice, Othello, Macbeth, and The Tempest. Class discussions will cover various aspects of Shakespeare’s dramaturgy, including plot design, the construction of individual scenes, style in both prose and verse, and recurrent themes—especially Shakespeare’s sense of life itself as a social drama characterized by role-playing. You’ll also be required to view a number of recent films available on videocassette or DVD so we can talk about how directors seek to translate Shakespeare’s plays from the page to the screen.
Other requirements include two critical essays, a class presentation, and participation in a major course project: during a two-week period in the second part of the semester, we will stage a full-dress trial of Othello for the murder of Desdemona. Attendance is also required, and yes, this requirement is strictly enforced. The instructor emphasizes both lively discussion and clear, effective writing; serious attention will be given, in and out of class, to the skills of critical analysis developed in your essays.
Texts for ENG 425 are the Norton Shakespeare, ed. Greenblatt et. al, and John Trimble’s Writing with Style. Students who take this course should come out of it with a clearer and more confident sense of how to write a critical analysis. They should be able to read, watch, or discuss Shakespeare plays with some knowledge of the historical context of Elizabethan theater, and they should be better able to appreciate the complexities of plot, character, theme, and language—in Shakespeare specifically, but also in literary works generally.
ENG 335-001 MWF 1:00-1:50 pm Marksbury
SURVEY OF AMERICAN LITERATURE II
ENG 336-001 TR 2:00-3:15 pm Reece
STUDIES IN AN AMERICAN AUTHOR: FOUR KENTUCKY STYLISTS
This course will focus on the essays of four Kentucky writers, all of whom, it could be said, are better known for their fiction. They are: Wendell Berry, Ed McClanahan, Barbara Kingsolver and Guy Davenport. We will pay careful consideration to why fiction writers chose to move outside that genre and we will study that latitude such a move provides. Students will write comparative analyses of these writers and will fashion their own essays, modeled on the examples of these four stylists.
ENG 382-001 TR 12:30-1:45 pm Smith
OF FILM II
ENG 401-001 MWF 2:00-2:50 pm Oaks
SPECIAL TOPICS IN WRITING: COMPETING STORIES
This course examines contentious versions of stories. Clearly, an individual narrative creates its own singular life out of experience (actual or psychic); but the raw material of experience can elicit any number of representations. In fact, representations themselves can provoke alternate narratives. Since the act of comparing works evokes meanings not available in an examination of each piece in isolation, the comparison process can enhance our understanding of texts and expand the possibilities for writing creatively about them.
Works to be explored include: “Tony’s Story” by Leslie Marmon Silko and “The Killing of a State Cop” by Simon Ortiz, Devil in a Blue Dress (novel and film versions), “The Knight’s Tale” and “The Miller’s Tale” from The Canterbury Tales, Eyes Wide Shut (screenplay and film by Stanley Kubrick) and Dream Story by Arthur Schnitzler, “Snow White” (versions by the Grimm Brothers, Anne Sexton, and Angela Carter), Mrs. Dalloway by Virginia Woolf and The Hours (novel and film versions).
Students will write one short (5-6 page) and one long (9-10 page) paper. Discussion and workshopping of papers will constitute the majority of class time.
ENG 407-001 M 3:00-5:30 pm Moffett
INTERMEDIATE WORKSHOP IN IMAGINATIVE WRITING: POETRY
We will begin the workshop by reading and discussing
selections of poetry, mainly contemporary poetry, both to prime the pump for
our own writing and to spend serious time considering the factors that make
poetry poetry, that is, different from prose. We may return to the work
of published poets from time to time, but will spend most of our class time
reading and discussing our own work, and thinking about how each poem
submitted to the workshop can best fulfill its individual potential.
The class will divide into two groups, which will alternate in turning in new
work; a poem will thus be due from each student every other week. Each
poem will be revised and gone over in conference with the instructor the week
after it has been “workshopped.”
ENG 407-002 T 3:30-6:00 pm Finney
INTERMEDIATE WORKSHOP IN IMAGINATIVE WRITING: FICTION
ENG 480G-001 TR 2:00-3:15 pm Blum
STUDIES IN FILM: FILM, CINEMA, AND SEXUALITY
From the marriage comedies of the early twentieth
century to pre-code Hollywood, from heavily censored cinema under the
production code to the sexualized cinema of post-liberation society, this
course will consider both the history of the representations of sexuality in
the cinema and how such representations participated in cultural practices
ENG 481G-001 TR 11:00-12:15 pm Uebel
STUDIES IN BRITISH LITERATURE: CONTINENTAL CONNECTIONS
This intensive seminar will study the Alexandria Quartet, a series of four novels (Justine/Balthazar/Mountolive/Clea [published 1957-60]) by Lawrence Durrell, in its relation to European literatures of the last two hundred years. There is arguably no more profound a literary study of the intricacies of human passion than the Quartet, or at least none so beautifully written. This seminar is then a rare opportunity to study these masterpieces, and to do so in relation to some of the Quartet’s primary “contenders” for the deepest and most moving study of human desire—Goethe’s Elective Affinities, Flaubert’s Salammbo, Mann’s Death in Venice, and Barnes’s Nightwood, and Godard’s Le Mépris (Contempt).
Topics to be discussed: the instability of desire, literary modernity, the emotions, poetic space (the city), temporality, pain, and, somewhere in all this, pleasure.
You won’t be able to read these books together again, ever, not in a course.
ENG 481G-002 MWF 1:00-1:50 Broome
STUDIES IN BRITISH LITERATURE: RENAISSANCE LITERATURE
ENG 483G-401 T 6:00-8:30 pm Dathorne
STUDIES IN AFRICAN-AMERICAN OR DIASPORIC LITERATURE: POSTCOLONIALITY AND 20TH CENTURY CARIBBEAN LITERATURE
ENG 486G-001 W 3:00-5:30 pm Fulbrook
STUDIES IN THEORY: INTRODUCTION TO PSYCHOANALYSIS AND LITERATURE
Oedipus, castration, penis envy, dream interpretation. If you have heard of these concepts before that is a testament to just how much of an influence psychoanalytic theory has had on twentieth and twenty first century thought – for better and worse. Yet, as familiar as most people are with these terms, many less people have actually read Freud let alone the psychoanalytic theorists who follow and diverge from him. This class will give you the chance to do that, providing you with an introduction to psychoanalysis by also thinking simultaneously about the relationships amongst psychoanalysis, literature, history, and culture. Reading selected texts by Freud and other psychoanalytic theorists (provisionally: Melanie Klien, D.W. Winnicott, Jacques Lacan, Julia Kristeva, Luce Irigaray and Adam Philips), alongside Michel Foucault’s The History of Sexuality, and selected literature and film, this class will present a broad and inter-disciplinary introduction to psychoanalytic theory. Particular focus will be given to issues of gender, sexuality, narrative form and the many ways in which psychoanalysis informs and is informed by nineteenth-century literature, literary studies more broadly, and twentieth-century culture.
While we will be thinking most particularly about the fraught relationship between psychoanalysis, literature, and history, we will also be asking broader questions about the significance of psychoanalysis in twentieth and twenty-first century culture. Why, for example, has psychoanalysis been by and large rejected by clinical psychologists for therapeutic purposes in America but not in England or France? Why on the other hand does it still have a vital, if waning life, in literary studies? What is the relationship between psychoanalysis and science? Between psychoanalysis and literary study? What tools does psychoanalysis offer us for thinking through the emergence, formation and transformation of gender, sexuality, subjectivity, and literary narrative? Is there such a thing as an “unconscious” of a culture or of social formations? What can we learn by studying and historicizing psychoanalysis through nineteenth-century literature about the erotics and psychological dynamics of hate and love, pornography and rape, sex and gender, peace and war in today’s society? These are just a few of the questions that will be raised in this class through an introduction to the tools, methodologies, and limitations of psychoanalysis as we discover them ourselves through primary texts and as they have been discussed by a long and interdisciplinary history of literary and cultural theory. Students will ideally have an opportunity toward the end of the semester to use the knowledges they have gained as a means to investigate vital areas of concern or interest in twenty-first century culture.
ENG 507-001 W 3:00-5:30 pm Finney
ADVANCED WORKSHOP IN IMAGINATIVE WRITING: POETRY
ENG 507-002 R 3:30-6:00 pm Edwards
ADVANCED WORKSHOP IN IMAGINATIVE WRITING: FICTION
ENG 507-003 T 3:30-6:00 pm
ADVANCED WORKSHOP IN IMAGINATIVE WRITING: AUTOBIOGRAPHY
English 507: AUTOBIOGRAPHY offers students an
opportunity to tell to themselves and to others the stories of their lives.
Some of our stories are brief, often humorous anecdotes drawn from personal
and family memory. Other stories come from our deepest psychological and
emotional sources. Not all of our life experiences are told or written as
stories. Many students will want to just write of their thoughts, feelings,
memories and experiences. Writing practices and discussions both in and out
of class will aid the writer in shaping and refining the material.
ENG 509-401 R 6:00-8:30 pm Williamson
COMPOSITION FOR TEACHERS
ENG 514-001 MW 5:30-6:45 pm Rouhier-Willoughby
TESL MATERIALS AND METHODS
An extension of ENG/EDC 513, this course introduces participants to materials used in the Teaching of English as a Second Language (TESL) and to methods used by teachers in the profession. Course requirements include attending lectures, participating in class discussions, planning and teaching a variety of language lessons individually and in small groups, observing ESL classes, and undertaking a materials evaluation research project. Prereq: ENG/EDC 513; or consent of instructor.
LIN 521-001 TR 9:30-10:45 am Stump & Sathaye
The purpose of this course is to allow students who have completed LIN 520 (Sanskrit I) to pursue a deeper understanding of the Sanskrit language. The Sanskrit literary traditions will be thoroughly surveyed and representative texts from each of the several chronological strata of Old Indic will be translated and discussed; these texts will include selections from the Rig Veda, the Satapatha Brahmana, the Nalopakhyanam, the Bhagavad Gita, Kalidasa's Meghaduta, and other texts. The course will also include an investigation of the relation between Sanskrit and Proto‑Indo‑European, with specific reference to those characteristics of Proto‑Indo‑European grammar reflected in Sanskrit and to those innovations which distinguish the Indo‑Iranian languages from other subgroups of Indo‑European.
The texts for the course will be William Dwight Whitney's Sanskrit Grammar and Charles Rockwell Lanman's Sanskrit Reader.
Students will prepare a number of Sanskrit texts (drawn mainly from Lanman's reader) for class discussion; in addition, students will turn in written translations and grammatical analyses of four short texts.
ENG 610-001 TR 11:00-12:15 pm Bauer
STUDIES IN RHETORIC: THE TEACHING OF LITERATURE
This class is designed to introduce new teachers of literature to the theoretical and pedagogical questions that inform the teaching of literature and writing about literature. The three questions that inform this course are: (1) How do we teach students to read—and to what ends?; (2) How does the writing/reading classroom become an interpretive community?; and (3) How do professors of literature formulate their teaching goals and philosophies? This course will focus on how we move from literary criticism and theory to literary pedagogy and practice, as well as on the status of the profession. Assignments for this course will include critical book reviews and a 10-page teaching philosophy statement.
ENG 622-001 TR 12:30-1:45 pm MacDonald
STUDIES IN RENAISSANCE LITERATURE: 1500-1660
The English Renaissance inherited notions of stage
comedy from the
ENG 653-001 TR 12:30-1:45 pm Roorda
STUDIES IN AMERICAN LITERATURE SINCE 1900: LITERATURE AND ENVIRONMENT
“Literature” and “environment”: paired terms, both cans of worms. We’ll pry them open, see what wriggles out, what hooks we can bait. Some questions to cast with:
This course is not a survey: we won’t sketch the development of pastoral or watch romantics morph into beats. It is synchronic, organized by topic and genre, stressing reading in present situations, for present purposes. Readings will include a flurry of short pieces plus longer works in three genres: nonfiction nature writing, long poems or poem sequences, and speculative fiction—at least a couple of each, for comparison. Of possible texts, I’ve settled on some (by Ammons, Atwood, Snyder, T.C. Boyle, etc.) but will choose among others in cahoots with the class. All will deal somehow with environmental relations and experience, many with environmental plight—what we’re accustomed to call “crisis,” except that crisis is temporary while our plight is not. As “environment,” then, the course should be sobering. As “literature,” it’s supposed to be fun.
Coursework will be typical, with brief talk-back papers, responsibility to present on an author/topic/genre, and a shorter paper and longer paper, below and well over ten pages respectively. Longer papers will be open in terms of period, location, identities, genre, approach; we’ll leave some time free toward the end to pursue topics. Whatever else you do here, this course can fit. After all, everything is environed, everything takes place.
ENG 656-401 R 6:00-8:00 pm Pierce
BLACK AMERICAN LITERATURE: AFRICAN AMERICAN LITERARY THEORY & CRITICISM
This course will examine the central texts and writings of African American literary theory and criticism, with a focus on the 20th century. Framing the theoretical and critical texts, will be close readings of “classic” African American novels, including work from James Baldwin, Richard Wright, and Toni Morrison. Included among the theorists and critics whose work will be explored are: Hortense Spillers, Ann duCille, Henry Louis Gates, and Deborah McDowell. Issues of queer theory, black feminism, (post)structuralism, (post)modernism, etc., will inform our discussions of both primary and secondary texts.
This seminar is for the graduate student whose primary focus is African American literature or contemporary American literature. Prerequisites: A graduate level course in African American literature/culture, Women’s Studies, or Social Theory.
ENG 660-001/GEO 715 M 1:00-3:45 pm Uebel/Natter
MODERN CRITICAL THEORY: SEMINAR ON BENJAMIN
It is the sheer force of originality in Walter Benjamin’s work, probably more than any other single quality, that continues to place these writings among the great achievements in twentieth-century thought. That Benjamin should occupy such a place is rather unlikely given that, aside from a collection of aphorisms (One Way Street), the only book he published in his lifetime was The Origin of German Tragic Drama, a book that even Theodor Adorno at one time confessed he could not understand. In tracing out the main currents of his thought, especially in his later writings (1934-40) as well as the Arcades Project, this seminar will be the opportunity to assess Benjamin’s status as a social and literary theorist. Because Benjamin’s work moves fluidly across multiple fields of intellectual inquiry—e. g., literary criticism, film studies, Marxist thought, social theory, geography, aesthetics, and the philosophy of history—the premise of this seminar will be an abiding commitment to cross-disciplinary thinking.
To this end, ENG 660 will meet with GEO 715, taught by Wolfgang Natter. In the interest of keeping the the seminar to a productive size, ENG 660 will be admitting about 8, with the same number for GEO 715. It is therefore strongly encouraged that anyone interested in this seminar should meet with the instructor before enrolling.
ENG 690-401 T 6:00-8:30 pm Bordo
TOPICS IN WOMEN’S STUDIES: TEACHING PRACTICUM
This course is designed for graduate students who are currently teaching or planning to teach courses in gender and/or women's studies. Seminars sessions will be divided into two segments. In the first hour, the instructor or a faculty guest will lead the class in lecture/discussion of particular topics, both practical (e.g. special techniques for generating student participation, using technology, creating a syllabus, working with first-year students, making effective use of movies and pop culture) and theoretical/controversial (e.g. feminist pedagogy, dealing with generational differences, respecting student diversity.) The second half of class will be devoted to sharing, brainstorming and collective strategizing of problems and challenges that the students in the class are experiencing in their own teaching. We will also spend some time imagining and constructing the "dream course" that each of you would most like to teach. Other written assignments and readings will be determined later. Permission of instructor is required. Preference will be given to students whose areas of specialization include gender studies, masculinity studies, or women's studies, and who are planning/hoping to find a job in which they will teach (at least in part) in those areas. Interested students should submit either a cv or a letter (to the instructor--111 Breckinridge Hall) demonstrating this.
ENG 700-001 AND 002 TBA Blum
TUTORIAL PHD CANDIDATES
ENG 722-001 M 2:00-4:30 pm Miller
SEMINAR IN SPENSER
English 722 this spring will focus on the poetry of Edmund Spenser. We’ll organize ourselves like a reading group and work through Books 1-3 of The Faerie Queene before deciding whether to do all six books or turn to the shorter poems. The required texts for the course are Hamilton’s extensively annotated scholarly edition of the poem, and an invaluable reference work, The Spenser Encyclopedia. I won’t assign specific readings in the latter, but you will find yourself consulting it all the time; it should be valuable long after this course is over as a reference work on all sorts of items relevant to the English Renaissance.
Requirements for the course will include regular presentations on the reading and on selected critical literature. There will be one short critical essay (6-10 pages) due early in the semester, and a seminar paper (minimum twenty pages) due on the final day of classes.
ENG 738-001 TR 2:00-3:15 pm Rosenman
SEMINAR IN VICTORIAN LITERATURE: VICTORIAN POPULAR FICTION
In this class, we'll read an unsystematic sampling from
the huge quantity of Victorian popular fiction, familiarizing ourselves with
significant genres such as sensation fiction and penny dreadfuls. While we
will attend carefully to individual texts, we'll also read Victorian and
modern commentaries on art to explore issues of cultural legitimacy and
authority, to analyze the ways in which the category "popular
fiction" is constructed in terms of gender and class, and to trace the
ways in which various audiences were defined and judged according to what
they read (or were presumed to read). Since I know that many of you are
interested in issues of social class, the course will contain a significant
section on working class authors and readers.
ENG 750-001 TR 12:30-1:45 pm Doolen
SEMINAR IN COLONIAL LITERATURE: WAR,
NATIONAL EXPANSION, AND THE WRITING OF EARLY
This course focuses on the colonial period and formulations of an emerging national identity. The writing of early American culture is a vast international terrain. It stretches over three hundred years; across the civilizations of Native American peoples, from the southern Aztecs to the northern Huron, as well as the fledgling settlements of Holland, England, Spain, France, and Portugal; speaks in countless indigenous, African, and European languages; and is defined by a vexed dialogue that takes place during moments of acute social and political crisis. Since we only have a semester, we will have to be content with a sampling of the colonial period’s most provocative cultural controversies and their effects on literary and political discourse. We will begin by reading several war narratives about  King Philip’s War (1676), which pitted Puritan New England against a confederation of Native American nations. We will read several Puritan responses to the war, including Mary Rowlandson’s famous captivity narrative and some lesser known histories, in order to theorize the fictional elements inherent in historical writing. We will extend our specific study of the racial component of Puritan historiography to the  New York Conspiracy Trials of 1741, which occurred after New York City’s slaves were accused of attempting to overthrow the city. This event will be the center of a more broad investigation of what constitutes our “archival memory” of slavery. We will read everything from newspaper fragments to some of the “classic” eighteenth century texts on the issue of slavery so that we can gain a better sense of colonial identity formation. Tracing this evolution into post-revolutionary America, our course will conclude with a close look at how the residue of this colonial past affects the formation of white nationalism in post-revolutionary America. With the  Federalist War Crisis (1798) as our focus, we will concentrate on how the novelist Charles Brockden Brown distills the period’s national hysteria into historical fiction that is tormented by colonial memories of racial conflict.
While you will study a large body of literary texts, the novel or poem does not define the colonial period, so you will need to be open to interdisciplinary, American Studies-style analysis. You should be prepared to do a lot of reading, collaborate inside and outside of class, engage in several research assignments, and write a seminar paper.
ENG 751-001 TR 11:00-12:15 pm Nelson
SEMINAR IN AMERICAN LITERATURE: 1800-1860: 19th-C US UTOPIANISM AND SOCIAL CHANGE
This class will study a variety of utopian social, philosophical and political movements in the antebellum US, including (and not limited to) Fourierism, Shaker communities, Nashoba and Transcendentalism. The course will look to social and economic history and political theory to ground our investigations. What made this incredible burst of experimentation possible? Revolution? Democracy? Capitalism? What are the factors that limited the broader adoption of the various radical possibilities explored in these philosophies and experiments? How does a broad investigation of early nineteenth-century utopian experimentation inform our political, historical and literary understanding of the Transcendentalists?
This course is built around an American Studies, interdisciplinary model: it is not primarily literary. Readings will include history, social and political theory, fictional and non-fictional literature and literary criticism. Requirements will including doing the reading, participating in class discussions and activities (a field trip to or field assignments in Shakertown are very possible), journal summaries, a group project and a research essay on a topic related to the course’s topic.