Autumn Quarter 2003 — Graduate Course Descriptions

503 Middlemarch in its Time Butwin MW 1:30-3:20

The object of this course will be to read George Eliot's Middlemarch first for the pleasure of the text and then as a key Victorian document, indeed as a culmination or, at the very least, as a key component, of numerous debates, impulses, urges in the period between its putative date (1829-32) and the date of its writing and publication forty years later (1870-73). Eliot's novel is thus-and very self-consciously-a summary of high Victorianism and the ambience that immediately preceded it. Calculate the birth and life expectancy of most of its major characters, and you have the entire 19th century down to the moment of publication. Thus in addition to Eliot's text we will engage in our own summary study of the period through the prose and poetry that seem to feed it: from Carlyle's Past and Present to Tennyson's In Memoriam, to Arnold's essays and poems, Mill's Liberty and The Subjection of Women along with painting, architecture and journalism belonging both to the period of Eliot's investigation-the early 1830s-and of her composition-the early 1870s. Short essays, seminar reports and one longer essay.

507 Literary Criticism: Classical (w/CLit 507) Borch-Jacobsen TTh 3:30-5:20

This course is the first in a series of survey courses on the history of literary criticism and theory in the West. It will concentrate on ancient literary theory from Plato to Augustine by way of Aristotle, ancient rhetoricians, Horace, Plutarch, Longinus and Plotinus. Students will be asked to give one presentation in class and to write one substantial term paper.

This course fulfills the Theory and Criticism Ph.D. Program requirements.

510 Literary Criticism: Recent & Contemporary (w/CLit 510 & Span 577) Gilbert-Santamaria MW 3:30-5:20

Catalog Description: A study of the major issues in literary criticism and theory since about 1965.

522 Shakespearean Comedy Streitberger MW 1:30-3:20

'Get thee a wife, get thee a wife. There is no staff more reverend than one tipped with horn.' So Benedick cheerfully encourages Don Pedro to marry, just as he will, by re-imagining the inevitability of infidelity in something near sacramental terms. We'll take this as a point of entry into the worlds of Shakespeare's middle comedies (Much Ado, As You Like It, Twelfth Night) and look back at how he got here and forward to the problem comedies and romances, from his plot structure, his sense of verbal play, his idea of gender relations and social concerns to the assumptions underlying the qualified optimism of his endings. We'll consider most of the comedies, but in addition to the three mentioned above we will give special attention to The Two Gentlemen of Verona, A Midsummer Night's Dream, The Merchant of Venice, Measure for Measure, and The Tempest. There will be some forays into theory: Bahktin, Barber, Frey; some other readings: Shakespeare's Venus and Adonis; some of the sonnets; John Lyly's Endymion; and we'll be interested in contemporary approaches to the plays from the margins as well as from the middle.

Requirements: collaborate with one other seminar colleague in leading discussion on one of the scheduled topics. Write a critical paper or complete a project (e.g., an editing project, a bibliographical study, a website, a lesson plan) of medium length on any course related subject of interest.

532 The Politics of Landscape in 19th Century American Literature Abrams MW 3:30-5:20

Close study of mid-nineteenth-century American texts in which the mediated, culturally constructed character of landscape will be the focus of our discussion. In large measure we'll explore the epistemological invasion and colonization of "wilderness" and the continental interior: the way various modes--the picturesque, for example, or Western scalar cartography--organize so-called "natural" space and scene in specific ways that answer to underlying ideological and economic agendas. The orientation of orientation itself--the latent assumptions underwriting the seeming givenness of landscape and scene--will be the target of our scrutiny. We'll be looking at this largely from a Euro-American point of view, but in a number of the texts that we'll be exploring, an indigenous, Native American sense of landscape surges up to challenge Euro-American assumptions. Some theoretical background: readings in W.J.T. Mitchell's Landscape and Power and other such texts. Some attention to American painting and lithography. Some attention to official government maps and the assumptions and social agendas they project into landscape and topography. Primary focus on the following authors: Edgar Allan Poe, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Henry D. Thoreau, Margaret Fuller, Chief Seattle, Emily Dickinson, Walt Whitman, Herman Melville.

537 W.E.B. DuBois & the 'Race Concept': History, Politics, Gender, Form (w/Clit 535A) Weinbaum MW 1:30-3:20

This course will examine the life work of W. E. B. Du Bois, focusing on his four polyphonic, multi-generic autobiographical texts, The Souls of Black Folk (1903), Darkwater (1920), Dusk of Dawn (1940) and The Autobiography of W. E. B. Du Bois written in the last years of his life. It will explore a variety of theoretical frameworks for interpreting Du Bois writings, recent Du Bois criticism, and contemporary theories of race and racism that have been inspired by and/or generated in the wake of Du Bois's work. In short, this will be a literature and a race theory course in equal measure. Throughout the quarter we will situate Du Bois's contributions within historical and political context, and will consider questions of genre, form, literary value and political efficacy. Two overarching concerns will guide our reading: 1) Du Bois's evolving understanding of the problematic that he dubbed the "race concept," and the relationship of his various autobiographical self-fashionings to his work on this problematic; and 2) the place of gendered representations and theories of gender power in Du Bois's thinking about racial belonging and effective anti-racism.

551 Poetics Today Reed TTh 11:30-1:20

This course provides an intensive introduction to postmodern American poetry, covering the years 1945 to 1980. We will be focusing on the genre's extraordinary investment in forms of community-- real, imagined, and utopian. This micropolitical approach will help us navigate the period's sea of labels--Beats, Black Arts, Black Mountain, Confessional, Deep Image, New York School, San Francisco Renaissance, Umbra--and enable us to think through the relationship between the pervasive literary rhetoric of "movements," "generations," and "tribes" and then-emergent forms of sociality (the antiwar movement, black nationalism, gay liberation, and radical feminism). We will be discussing such topics as the Anthology Wars, the mimeograph revolution, coffeehouse culture, "composition by field," and the founding of the St. Mark's Poetry Project. Students will become acquainted with the period's marquee names--Ashbery, Baraka, Creeley, Ginsberg, Lowell, O'Hara, Plath, and Rich-as well as a many other, less well known figures. The quarter will end by reconsidering the Marxism and poststructuralism of the influential journal L=A=N=G=U=A=G=E in the light of later, revisionist statements on poetry, politics, and community made by such Language writers as Charles Bernstein, Lyn Hejinian, Erica Hunt, and Bob Perelman.

556 Cultural Studies (w/CLit 535B) Reddy MW 11:30-1:20

The goal of this course will be to build upon and re-cast research areas in Asian American and Asian Diasporic Studies in order to address the current intellectual, artistic, political and demographic transformations that have rendered anew the objects and methods of these fields in the last decade. Located at the intersection of the principal political, economic, and cultural forces of the U.S. nation-state and the set of international political economic conditions that are generally bundled together under the name of Globalization, Asian American Studies and metropolitan diasporic studies, like other interdisciplinary endeavors, have in the last decade been engaged in critical conversations about the nature and context of their inquiry, their objects and methods of study, their institutionalization, and their changing political constituencies. We will study, absorb and critically reflect on a set of methodologies (in particular neo-marxist critiques or race, postscolonial cultural studies, and comparative modernity studies) that have been most effective in dislocating the regulative "national biases" that have historically organized Asian American Studies and other fields of interdisciplinary critique. In naming these earlier modes of experiencing, apprehending and discoursing on the objects of Asian American Studies as constitutive of a "national bias" in the scholarly work, we mean more than the general critique of exclusionary gender and sexual politics of Asian American cultural nationalism that have become a popular node of discussion and dissent within and outside the field of Asian American and Ethnic Studies. By national bias we also mean to highlight the degree to which our methods of teaching and situating Asian American and Asian diasporic history and cultural production continue to "cast" Asian racialization within a national frame that stresses continuity, synthesis and identity (Lowe 1997).

Breaking from the national epistemological structure that has thus far constituted Asian American Studies, one could say broadly that our inquiry hopes also to pursue in a located and substantive though necessarily partial manner what has come to be known as Post-Nationalist critique, if that critique is to be understood not as the rejection of the study of the nation as a constitutive and regulative set of constraints but its rigorous and politically necessary supplementation. In this way, while our focus is exclusively in re-thinking the methods and objects of Asian American and Asian diasporic studies, the form of epistemological critique we seek to pursue exceeds the parameters of Asian Americanist inquiry. Hence, our readings will be culled from both within and outside the fields of Asian American and Asian diasporic studies. We will read both contemporary scholarship and important "foundational" essays (such as Marx's "On the Jewish Question").

Attn: This class will presume that you have some advanced knowledge of and are working in one or more of the following fields: Asian American studies, Asian disapora studies, and postcolonial metropolitan studies.

Because this course will pursue a certain imminent critique from within these fields, it is not suitable for students looking for a general introduction to these fields. Each student will be required to present a research perspectus to the entire class beginning in the eighth week. The perspectus should be based upon on-going research in one of the above mentioned fields. If you are not sure that this class is appropriate for you, please contact the instructor ( before signing up. Finally, this class is part of a linked two-quarter "methods" course in Asian American and Asian diasporic studies. The second quarter of the class will be taught by Professor Moon-ho Jung (Dept. of History), focusing more specially on question of history and historiography relating to the study of racialized capitalism. Students are encouraged (though not required) to take both quarters of the course.

564 Current Rhetorical Theory Dillon MW 11:30-1:20

Once again a wave is mounting of calls for alternative rhetorics--alternative, that is, to impersonal, academic making of claims and marshalling arguments and evidence to increase adherence to the claim. This time the rise of new, electronic media provides much of the impetus. The seminar will address these calls for "other ways of arguing" (as Berger might say).

We will begin by characterizing impersonal rhetoric in academic discourse, and then take up personal and visual rhetorics as they supplement or offer to displace traditional sources of authority. We will pursue similar contrasts between impersonal and personal documentary. We will look at hybrid types like autoethnography and ethnobiography and assess self-presentation as argument in issue-oriented weblogs. Finally, we will consider the adequacy of montage/collage/juxtaposition as alternative structures of argument.

Readings will include pieces by Susan Sontag, John Berger, and Clive Scott on images and narrative, Jurgen Habermas on personal expression and argument, David Kolb on argument in hypertext, Bill Nichols on documentary films, and a cluster of readings on identity, ethnicity, and social critique.

Written work will include two or three shorter analyses and comparisons of particular sites and issues and a final seminar paper addressing the issue of authority and persuasiveness in one text or site.

567 AApproaches to Teaching Composition Guerra TTh 3:30-5:20

This seminar serves as both an introduction to the field of rhetoric and composition as well as a continuation of the orientation for new Teaching Assistants. The course begins with an overview of the field and turns initially to readings and discussions about practices in the writing classroom. From there we will move into more theoretical (but still pedagogically oriented) discussion of rhetorical theory, rhetorical history, genre theory, and multicultural approaches. We will also spend some time reading and discussing materials on Standard English and non-prescriptive approaches to teaching grammar from a rhetorical perspective. Assignments will include at least six brief response papers, a mid-term analysis of a personal teaching artifact, and a final seminar paper in which an empirical analysis of writing is the central focus.

567 BApproaches to Teaching Composition Bawarshi TTh 3:30-5:20

This seminar serves as both an introduction to the field of rhetoric and composition as well as a continuation of the orientation for new Teaching Assistants. The course begins with an overview of the field and turns initially to readings and discussions about practices in the writing classroom. From there we will move into more theoretical (but still pedagogically oriented) discussion of rhetorical theory, rhetorical history, genre theory, and multicultural approaches. We will also spend some time reading and discussing materials on Standard English and non-prescriptive approaches to teaching grammar from a rhetorical perspective. Assignments will include at least six brief response papers, a mid-term analysis of a personal teaching artifact, and a final seminar paper in which an empirical analysis of writing is the central focus.

571 Theory & Practice in TESOL Kanno TTh 1:30-3:20

As one of the first courses you encounter in the MATESL Program, this course aims to familiarize you with key concepts and theories in the field of TESOL as well as their implications in classroom teaching. The first half of the course provides a basic foundation in second language acquisition (SLA)-things you definitely need to know in order to be an effective language educator, such as Universal Grammar, Monitor Model, Output Hypothesis, Interaction Hypothesis and Focus on Form. The rest of the course explores topics that have become increasingly important in TESOL in recent years. Issues such as social identity, bilingual education, multicompetence, and critical applied linguistics will be discussed. TESOL is becoming a richly interdisciplinary field, incorporating ideas not only from linguistics and psychology, but also from education, sociology and anthropology. In all topics we discuss, I strongly encourage you to reflect critically on how we use language to teach, to learn and to negotiate who we are in various situations.

575 Pedagogical Grammar Kanno TTh 10:30-12:20

This course covers the basic syntactic structures of English. Students develop a working knowledge of those grammatical structures most crucial in the teaching of English to speakers of other languages. They also practice relating and applying the structures studied to classroom situations (i.e., student errors, student questions, lesson planning, adapting textbooks, etc.). There is also a strong focus on grammar in use as students analyze authentic discourse and design teaching materials that emphasize form, meaning, and use of grammar. Coursework includes grammar quizzes, analysis projects, class presentations, materials development, and daily homework.

584 Advanced Fiction Workshop Johnson W 3:30-7:10p
585 Advanced Poetry Workshop McElroy TTh 12:30-2:20
599 Critical Theory and its Discontents (w/Clit 530) Blau MW 3:30-5:20

The title refers to Freud's fateful summary of culture in Civilization and Its Discontents, though the discontents we'll be starting with were those in the study of literature when, through the dissidence of the 1960s, critical theory emerged as a major challenge to the practice of criticism and to institutional practice as well. On the academic scene the imports from continental thought were at first (and for some still) as disturbing as Japanese cars and microchips once were to the economy. But if the Japanese "bubble" burst, that's not quite true of theory, which has crossed borders and disciplines and, through the trickle-down economy of scholarship, passed into the media, popular culture, the postmodern condition and postcolonial thought, while foregrounding the quadrivium of race, class, gender, ethnicity. The effects have been felt, through debates over the canon, in the displacement of literary by cultural studies, the incertitudes of the curriculum, and in a redefinition--so far as definition is possible at all--of the limits and purposes of what we think of as literature.

If there has been through all this an opening up of cultural prospects, there has also been, with the immanence of globalization (no less 9/11), a permutation of discontents, as well as a resurgence of certain habits of mind or forms of feeling that were, in the fallout of revisionist marxism, ideologically suspect, as well as "transcendental signifiers" that were, with the incursion of deconstruction, presumably demystified. Readings will move, with maybe some preliminary material on the old New Criticism, from structuralism and deconstruction (intersecting psychoanalysis and feminist thought) through cultural materialism and the new historicism to "queer theory" and the notion of "performativity"-while reconsidering throughout, after years of critique, the claims of imagination, the poetic, and the powers of the aesthetic.

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