(Descriptions last updated: 21 December 2000)
200A (Reading Literature)
“[O]ur wants and pleasures have their origins in society; we therefore measure them in relation to society” –Karl Marx, Wage-Labor and Capital.
Desire and Class. The quotation above is an appropriate starting point for this literature course where the theme of our readings will be “Desire and Class.” We will be looking at desire in some of its more traditional representations (Thomas Mann, Death in Venice) which have mainly reflected the impact of more traditional writers such as Plato and Freud and their thinking about desire and class. The main readings of the course, however, will examine the more recent emergence—in cyberspace—of a desire that is “hard wired.” Here desire is no longer something regarded as “natural” (fixed, in-born, pre-given and instinctual) but as something that is “performed” (invented from moment-to-moment in the virtual realities of cyber-sex, phone-sex, digital chatrooms, porn theaters in Times Square…). Two shorter 4-6 page papers and one longer 7-8 page paper are required. There will be a course reader to supplement the primary readings in fiction, film and music video. Texts: Thomas Mann, Death in Venice; Dorothy Allison, Bastard Out of Carolina; Samuel Delaney, Times Square Red, Times Square Blue; Nicholson Baker, Vox; Titanic (film directed by James Cameron); Brittaney Spears, “Oops, I did it Again” (music video).
200B (Reading Literature)
This initial 200-level English course will introduce you to the demands of reading and writing in a sophomore-level literature class. The course aims to present you with new challenges, but it will also provide you with new opportunities to express yourself. Together we will help you exercise your reading skills as well as develop and improve your critical writing skills. To stimulate discussion and to generate writing, we will read essays and short stories related to the American genre of detective fiction. Course readings will focus on the 19th-century origins of the genre and will include stories by Edgar Allan Poe, Harriet Prescott Spofford and Mark Twain. The detective will serve as our model of the ideal reader. Playing the role of a textual detective, you will examine the means by which evidence is accumulated to generate knowledge. We will explore different approaches to analyzing literature by recognizing reading and writing as inseparable activities which comprise a continuing dialogue in a cooperative discourse community. Course Requirements: .written work (one 2-3 page analytical essay, and three 4-6 page essays due throughout the quarter), and participation, i.e., coming to class prepared to take active part in discussions and group exercises. Text: Photocopied course packet.
200C (Reading Literature)
This course introduces the study of literature through a close focus on the writings of the Harlem Renaissance. A selection of poems, plays, essays, short stories, novellas, and novels will focus our exploration of the possibilities and pleasures of literary language. Through the study of such authors as Langston Hughes, Zora Neale Hurston, Nella Larson, and Jean Toomer, we’ll elaborate the practice of critical inquiry. The course will also attend to important social issues raised by these African-American writers. More than an incredibly vibrant literary movement, the Harlem Renaissance is a major event in American cultural and social history. Texts: Hurston, Their Eyes Were Watching God; Hughes, Five Plays by Langston Hughes; Larson, Quicksand and Passing; Thurman, Infants of the Spring; Toomer, Cane; photocopied course packet.
200D (Reading Literature)
Travel and Adventure Literature: Transports of the Self. This course examines travel and adventure in fiction and non-fictional narratives. Texts are principally English, spanning Renaissance accounts of voyages to the New World, through the subsequent centuries of British colonialism and imperialism, to a quirky late-20th-century novella set in Victorian England. In addition to prose works, we will examine travel -- including so-called “mental” travel or imaginative transport of the self -- in several English Romantic poets. The 19th-century French author Flaubert’s travels in Egypt, a brief excerpt from the decadent’s “bible” of J-K Huysmans, and the travel fantasies of the Parisian poet Baudelaire will represent contemporaneous Continental notions of travel. Focussing on the ideologies of colonialism and imperialism -- in their economic, political, scientific, and racial aspects -- our interest will encompass the peculiar subjectivities of the traveller/adventurer as portrayed in these accounts.Besides the commitment to reading the assigned texts, the course asks students to complete weekly writing assignments of varying lengths, as well as to participate in class discussions and to take part in group assignments and presentations. Sophomores only, Registration Period 1. Texts: Kipling, Kim; Byatt, Angels and Insects: Two Novellas; Flaubert, Flaubert in Egypt: A Sensibility on Tour (ed. & tr. Francis Steegmuller); Defoe, Robinson Crusoe; Samuel Johnson & James Boswell, A Journey to the Western Islands of Scotland and The Journal of a Tour to the Hebrides; optional:Joseph Williams, Style: Ten Lessons in Clarity and Grace.
200E (Reading Literature)
Regional Mythologies of the United States. The Wild West, the Old South, the Midwestern Heartland, and Puritan New England—these are oversimplified regional constructions; however, they maintain a level of political, social, and imaginative currency in American culture. In this course, we will investigate regional mythologies of the United States and how literature participates in their construction and deconstruction. Focusing on the late 19th and early 20th centuries, we will trace these constructions through the literature of American Realism, Naturalism, and Modernism, particularly asking how these regional mythologies impact notions of race, gender, and class. In addition to selected critical essays, we will study short fiction and/or novels by the following authors: Hamlin Garland, Kate Chopin, Mary Wilkins Freeman, Willa Cather, Sherwood Anderson, William Faulkner, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Charles Chesnutt and Edith Wharton. Course requirements include response papers, a group project on regional constructions in film, and a final paper. Texts: Cather, My Antonia; Chesnutt, The Marrow of Tradition; Wister, The Virginian; Wharton, Ethan Frome; Anderson, Winesburg, Ohio; photocopied course packet.
207A (Introduction to Cultural Studies)
Contemporary American Masculinity. In this course you will be introduced to the discipline of cultural studies. Our first goal will be to consider the question “What is cultural studies?” Our second primary goal will be to practice cultural studies, and our course theme, “Contemporary American Masculinity,” will provide a framework for that practice. Stuart Hall has said that cultural studies is “an open-ended project” without “simple origins.” Consequently we will utilize a number of different approaches (psychoanalytic, sociological, historical and literary) and examine texts from many different cultural locations (Boy Scout manuals, films, music videos, novels, plays, interviews, speeches). In bringing these multiple approaches to bear upon such a wide range of texts we will explore constructions of contemporary American masculinity in relation to questions o nation, race, class, technology, and sexuality. You will be required to write single spaced, typed, one page weekly reflection papers and a longer, 7 to 8 page critical essay at the end of the course.
207B (Introduction to Cultural Studies)
Introduction to Queer Studies. This course will explore four overlapping topics. "Coming Out and Closet Games" will begin with coming out narratives in fiction and film, and will also attend to the homosexual closet as social institution in such places as U.S. military policy ("Don't Ask, Don't Tell"). In "Art, Obscenity, and AIDS," we'll examine the political controversy that surrounded the photography of Robert Mapplethorpe and the work of other queer artists at the height of the American AIDS crisis. With special attention to the short stories of Randall Kenan, "Queer Rainbow?" will focus on intersections of race and sexuality. Finally, we'll look closely at very contemporary issues of queer assimilation in "Commodity Queer." Now that there are ads focused on lesbians and gay men, and a host of homo sitcom characters, is queerness losing its radical edge? "Introduction to Queer Studies" raises this and other questions. During the quarter, we'll inquire into the politics of queer representation in a wide variety of media. Texts: Holly Hughes, Clit Notes; Randall Kenan, Let the Dead Bury Their Dead; K. M. Soehnlein, The World of Norman Boys; Jeanette Winterson, Oranges Are Not the Only Fruit; David Wojnarowicz, Close to the Knives.
210A & B (Literature of the Ancient World)
This course provides an introduction to the literature of antiquity, with a focus on texts produced in the Mediterranean region between 2000 B.C. and 397 A.D. Among our goals is laying a foundation for future coursework, in literature or history for example, that assumes a broad knowledge of ancient texts and their cultural contexts. We commence with a unit on the ancient Near East, reading some of the works which celebrate the goddess Inanna, and the hero-king Gilgamesh. This material comes to us courtesy of archaeologists, translators, and editors, who work with clay tablets (often damaged), and so part of our challenge will be to assess the texts aesthetically even though they are incomplete. Passages from the Bible will be brought into play, as we ask whether parallels among these sources point to specific if unrecoverable events or to innate human universals. We then move on to Greek epic in the Odyssey of Homer, and Latin comic epic in Ovid’s Metamorphoses. We will now have to ask questions of genre. Why has Gilgamesh not been seen as a bona fide epic, and why does the Odyssey, designed for oral recitation, become the inspiration for so many self-consciously literary novels? We conclude with a unit on the ancient novels, laughing over The Golden Ass: Or Metamorphoses of Apuleius, even as we track what it creatively “steals” from Ovid; and how, in turn, it becomes grist for Augustine’s autobiographical Confessions. The Bible has tantalizing narratives to supply here too, so we will look at some of the ancient Jewish novellas such as the additions to the Book of Esther, and Judith. The course requires a lot of reading, and class participation is essential. Work consists of one longer paper (6-8 pages), a portfolio of 1-2 pp. response papers, and a final examinations. No majors, Registration Period 1. (ENGL 210B represents spaces in this class reserved for new transfer students only; add codes available in English Advising office, A-2-B Padelford, (206) 543-2634.) Texts:Inanna: Queen of Heaven and Earth; Her Stories and Hymns from Sumer (Wolkstein & Kramer, tr.); Gilgamesh: Translated from the Sin-Leqi-Unninni Version (Gardner & Maier, tr.); The Holy Bible: Douay-Rheims Version (tr. Challoner); The Odyssey of Homer (tr. Fitzgerald); The Metamorphoses of Ovid (tr. Humphries); The Golden Ass: Or Metamorphoses of Apuleius (tr. Kenney); The Confessions of Augustine (tr. Pine-Coffin).
211A (Medieval & Renaissance Literature)
What can we, as modern readers, possibly learn from medieval texts? Why are they so enduring? Why was Beowulf, a 1000-year-old poem, on the bestseller list last year? We’ll consider these and other questions as we work our way through a varied selection of European medieval texts—some very well-known, others less so—considering why these texts continue to capture the modern imagination. There will be a mid-term and a final (part take-home, part in-class), as well as periodic response papers. Required readings include Beowulf, Sir Gawain and the Green Knight; selections from Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales; The Book of Margery Kempe, and the Lais of Marie de France.No majors, Registration Period 1. Texts: Sir Gawain and the Green Knight (tr. Borroff); The Lais of Marie de France (tr. Hanning & Ferrante); The Book of Margery Kempe (tr. Windeatt, Beowulf (tr. Lehmann).
211B & C (Medieval & Renaissance Literature)
This course offers a broad introduction to English literary culture from the Middle Ages to the Renaissance emphasizing both literary form and cultural context. We will be covering a vast historical scope and a very diverse body of material—Old English, Anglo-Norman, Middle English and Renaissance texts. But the pace of the course will allow us to ask fundamental questions about literary history and historical approaches to literature, including the interpretive questions raised by reading literature from a different cultural context, the formation of the canon and literary periodization, and the status of women in the literary tradition. And it will allow us to read some fascinating, peculier, moving, and beautiful texts. No majors, Registration Period 1. (ENGL 211C represents spaces in this class reserved for new transfer students only; add codes available in English Advising office, A-2-B Padelford, (206) 543-2634.) Texts: Michael Alexander, ed., Earliest English Poems; R. M. Liuzza, ed., Beowulf; Marie Borroff, tr., Sir Gawain and the Green Knight; Pearl; Windeatt, ed., Book of Margery Kempe; Marie de France, Lais; Abrams, et al., Norton Anthology of English Literature, Vol. 1B.
212A (Literature of Enlightenment & Revolution)
This course will explore the twin literary impulses of this period, on the one hand towards reason and on the other towards passion. With particular attention to the historical and social contexts, we will explore how these seemingly contradictory impulses are enmeshed together in the question of what it means to be human. Through (mostly English) texts exploring themes such as slavery, gender, and the politics of class we will consider the social and political implications of how that question of humanity gets answered. Closely connected to this exploration we will also consider, as many of these writers did, what the role of the artist and poet was thought to be in all these passionate reasonings. Readings will include Frankenstein by Mary Shelley, Sense and Sensibility by Jane Austen, Lyrical Ballads by Wordsworth and Coleridge, and The Marriage of Heaven and Hell by William Blake, as well as a variety of short texts by writers such as Alexander Pope, Jonathan Swift, Mary Robinson, Anna Barbauld, Hannah Moore, Mary Wollestonecraft, Edmund Burke, John Keats, and more. Assignments will include weekly response papers/discussion questions, a mid-term exam and a final critical essay. No majors, Registration Period 1. Texts: Shelley, Frankenstein; Austen, Sense and Sensibility; Wollestonecraft, A Vindication of the Rights of Women; Swift, A Modest Proposal; Gulliver’s Travels; Pope, Essay on Man and Other Poems; Blake, Songs of Innocence and Experience; Marriage of Heaven and Hell; Wordsworth & Coleridge, Lyrical Ballads; Robinson, Mary Robinson: Selected Poems.
212B & C (Literature of Enlightenment & Revolution)
The Birth of the Individual. We will be reading 18th-century poetry, prose and novels: Pope, Filmer, Locke, Hume, Rousseau, Kant, Godwin and Austen among others. Weekly response papers and quizzes, a midterm and final exam, an in-class presentation and a final paper. No majors, Registration Period 1. (ENGL 212C represents spaces in this class reserved for new transfer students only; add codes available in English Advising office, A-2-B Padelford, (206) 543-2634.) Texts: Alexander Pope, Essay on Man and Other Poems; Jane Austen, Pride and Prejudice; William Godwin, Caleb Williams; photocopied course packet.
213A (Modern & Postmodern Literature)
Quizzes: MW 2:30, TTh 1:30, TTh 2:30.
Twentieth-century American dreams and nightmares are the subject of this course: short stories, novels, poetry, film, and political speeches are the texts. Three basic questions will guide our reading of each dream work: (1) What is the vision and how is it expressed? (2) Under what socio-historical conditions is the dream produced and how might they shape its composition? (3) What are the dream work’s real-life consequences and for whom? No majors, Registration Period 1. Texts: Zora Neale Hurston, Their Eyes Were Watching God; Jack Kerouac, On the Road; Octavia Butler, Dawn.
This course is an introduction to Shakespeare’s plays, with significant concentration on questions of literary analysis and interpretation. Text: Shakespeare, Complete Plays.
228A & B (English Literary Culture: To 1600)
British literature from Middle Ages to end of sixteenth century. Study of literature in its cultural context, with attention to changes in language, form, content and style. No majors, Registration Period 1. (ENGL 228B represents spaces in this class reserved for new transfer students only; add codes available in English Advising office, A-2-B Padelford, (206) 543-2634.) Texts: Abrams, et al., ed., Norton Anthology of English Literature, Vol. 1, 7th ed.; Machiavelli, The Prince.
228C (English Literary Culture: To 1600)
In this course we will examine English literary culture from the Middle Ages to the end of the sixteenth century. Students should expect to attend all meetings and to engage in discussion. Two main papers, midterm and final. Readings will include selections from Old English, Marie de France, Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, selections from medieval drama, John Skelton, Sir Thomas Wyatt, Isabella Whitney, Edmund Spenser, Sir Philip Sydney, and Shakespeare’s sonnets. No majors, Registration Period 1. Text: Abrams, et al., eds., Norton Anthology of English Literature, Vol. 1.
229A & B (English Literary Culture: 1600-1800)
[British literature in 17th and 18th centuries. Studies of literature in its cultural context, with attention to changes in form, content, and style.] No majors, Registration Period 1. (ENGL 229B represents spaces in this class reserved for new transfer students only; add codes available in English Advising office, A-2-B Padelford, (206) 543-2634.) Text: Norton Anthology of English Literature, Vol. 1.
229C (English Literary Culture: 1600-1800)
This course surveys representative texts from 1600-1800. The course goal is to gain a critical understanding of the texts in question through close reading and investigation of the valuable historical and cultural contexts. In addition, discussion, lecture and other classroom exercises are shaped to foster aesthetic engagement as it explores diverse topics in and surrounding the texts including, but not limited to, the peculiarities of the period’s literary language; the period’s shifting views on social order; construction of class, sexuality, gender and race; theatre architecture and audience behavior, now and then; current academic theoretical trends; problems of sensory imagery; and the basics of prosody. All students are required to perform memorized parts in a performance group that meets throughout the quarter. Also required: discussion, secondary readings, papers, quizzes, midterm and final. No majors, Registration Period 1. Text: Abrams, et al., eds., Norton Anthology of English Literature, Vol. 1.
230A (English Literary Culture: After 1800)
(Quizzes: MW 12:30; TTh 11:30; TTh 12:30.)
The dual revolution of modern times--industrial and political--has helped to define the project of English literature from the French Revolution through the Cold War. A study of representative writers and genres will help us situate ourselves as readers in the first years of the 21st century. Large lecture and discussion sections, short essays and exams. No majors, Registration Period 1. Text: Abrams, et al., eds., The Norton Anthology of English Literature, Vol. 2.
242A (Reading Fiction)
Mysteries and Fiction: A Study in the Art of Telling Tales. This course will examine both the implicit and explicit intersections of the mystery novel as a genre and more general fiction. What separates the modern mystery from the “literature” section in book stores? Can we point to a tangible difference between the two—between prose styles, content, characterization, narration? Do novels that are dubbed “literature” have mysteries of their own? The class will grapple with these questions without assuming there is an absolute “answer,” both in discussions and two (mid-term and final) papers. Readings include George, Playing for the Ashes; Nabokov, Pale Fire; Rendell, A Dark-Adapted Eye; Melville, Benito Cereno, excerpts from The Case-Book of Sherlock Holmes, and select stories of Edgar Allen Poe. Sophomores only, Registration Period 1. Texts: Herman Melville, Great Short Works; Arthur Conan Doyle, The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes; Elizabeth George, Playing for the Ashes; Vladimir Nabokov, Pale Fire; Ruth Rendell, writing as Barbara Vine, A Dark-Adapted Eye.
242B (Reading Fiction)
Voicing Consciousness. In this course we will look at the ways authors use the narrative form to explore the complexities of identity and consciousness. We will read a broad base of short stories, as well as three novels. We will also work to develop critical reading skills and heighten the appreciation of literature. Course requirements include active participation, short papers, a midterm, and a final. Texts: James H. Pickering, ed., Fiction 100: An Anthology of Short Fiction, 9th ed.; Julia Alvarez, How the Garcia Girls Lost Their Accents; Ernest J. Gaines, A Lesson Before Dying; Danzy Senna, Caucasia.
242C (Reading Fiction)
Contemporary Fictions of Canada.
Q: Why does this course have such an awkward title? Why not call it “Contemporary Canadian Fiction?”
A: The deliberately awkward title of this course points to the interwoven history of nationalism and literature in Canada. For example: nineteenth-century Canadian literary critics considered a national literature crucial in constructing a concept of nationhood; in 1967, Canada’s 100-year anniversary sparked a resurgence of interest in Canadian literature and saw it introduced as an academic subject into high schools and universities across the country. Thus, in this course, we will not only consider the influence of the national context on the literature, but will also ask: what role does literature play in constructing a national identity (that is, a “fiction of Canada”)? What stories do Canadians tell themselves about their origins? How are inter-ethnic relations figured? Does the country as represented in contemporary fiction live up to its reputation as a tolerant, multicultural mosaic? We will briefly examine nineteenth-century settler literature in order to identify what kind of nation the early Canadians imagined they were building. Having established this historical reference point, we will leap ahead to the post-centennial literary explosion and investigate the contemporary relationship between “nation and narration.” Texts: Daniel Francis, Imagining Ourselves: Classics of Canadian Non-Fiction; Margaret Laurence, The Diviners; Jeannette Armstrong, Slash; Judith Thompson, Lion in the Streets; Anderson-Dargatz, The Cure for Death by Lightning; Eden Robinson, Traplines.
242D (Reading Fiction)
In Speak, Memory, Vladimir Nabokov observes, “The cradle rocks above an abyss, and common sense tells us that our existence is but a brief crack of light between two eternities of darkness.” All the more need, then, to read some glittering fiction. Students should expect tests, short papers, presentations, and (again quoting Nabokov) “what I shall bluntly call aesthetic bliss.” Texts: Nabokov, Lolita; Pale Fire; Speak, Memory; Williford & Martone, eds., The Scribner Anthology of Contemporary Short Fiction: Fifty North American Stories Since 1970.
242E (Reading Fiction)
Narrative, Memory, and Identity. ENGL 242 is an introductory course in reading and writing about fiction. In this class we will read several American novels that examine the power of memory and history to structure personal and community identity. Some questions to be explored: How are memories remembered and subsequently represented? Can a memory be inherited by a community? How do narratives of memory provide an understanding of the present, and how can they structure our conception of the future? Texts: James Ellroy, My Dark Places; Denis Johnson, Jesus' Son; Art Spiegelman, Maus I & II; Toni Morrison, Beloved; William Faulkner, Absalom, Absalom!
250A & B (Introduction to American Literature)
Many accounts of American literary history trace the ways literature describes and represents historical events and situations, such as settlement, revolution, slavery, civil war, industrialization, or immigration. American literary history often becomes the story of American nationalization and self-reliance. However, our survey from the Colonial to the early Modern period will resist the temptation to read American literature as a history of settlement, the textual front in a massive effort to tame and possess the North American wilderness. Instead, we will read literary interventions to create wilderness, unsettle America, and abandon, banish and subjugate American selfhood. We will explore the wilderness that American literature makes and maintains, and the forgotten history of impoverishment and exile that unravels American identity. The syllabus will work through anthologized selections ranging from Mary Rowlandson’s captivity narrative in 1682 to Gertrude Stein’s hit Broadway opera of 1928, “Four Saints in Three Acts.” In addition to published written texts, our survey will also consider the wilderness and wastelands of unpublished manuscripts, as well as musical and visual art. Assignments: two papers (4-5 pages) with midterm and final exam. No majors, Registration Period 1. (ENGL 250B represents spaces in this class reserved for new transfer students only; add codes available in English Advising office, A-2-B Padelford, (206) 543-2634.) Text: Norton Anthology of American Literature 1620-1865, Vol. 1.
250C (Introduction to American Literature)
This course explores some of the major themes, concerns and developments in the literature of the United States from the revolution through the mid-twentieth century. Our reading and our conversations will be organized around three main units which explore the changing relationship between literature, the individual, and the nation at three different “moments” in American literary history. We will start with the rise of national literature and the American Renaissance. Our reading will include tales and sketches from Washington Irving, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Herman Melville and Edgar Allen Poe, as well as poetry by William Cullen Bryant, Emily Dickinson, and Walt Whitman. Next, we will examine the Progressive Era and read short stories by Mark Twain, Henry James, Edith Wharton, Stephen Crane, Sarah Orne Jewett, Jack London, and W.E.B. DuBois. Finally, we will examine modernism and the emergence of new definitions of the relationship between literature and community. In this last unit, we will consider a selection of authors including T.S. Eliot, Marianne Moore, Zora Neale Hurston and William Faulkner. No majors, Registration Period 1. Text: McQuade, ed., The Harper Anthology of American Literature, Single Volume, 3rd edition
250D (Introduction to American Literature)
This is a survey course in American literature meant to provide English majors and non-majors alike with a comprehensive background in the important authors, works, and themes of American literature. Since we have such a large period of time and such an expansive body of literature to cover in ten short weeks, you can expect two things of this class: one, you will be expected to do a lot of reading this quarter, and two, there will necessarily be omissions in our attempts to cover over two hundred years of history. Our readings have been carefully selected to provide you with an operating knowledge of the major figures and texts of this historical epoch as well as with some understanding of lesser-known authors and texts from the same period. Students will emerge from this class with a solid background in American literature as well as with an appreciation for the lesser-known figures of this epoch and an understanding of the intricate interactions between literature and social, historical, economic, and political forces. Requirements: four response papers, one longer paper, quizzes, journals, presentations, and participation. No majors, Registration Period 1. Texts: Baym, et al., eds., The Norton Anthology of American Literature (shorter, 5th ed.); Mark Twain, Pudd’nhead Wilson; Anzia Yezierska, Bread Givers.
251A (Introduction to American Political Culture)
“A House Divided.” Why have so many American junior high students read The Red Badge of Courage in their English classes? What does that have to do with Abraham Lincoln’s assassination? And why was (is?) the movie Gone with the Wind so well-loved in the United States? These are some of the questions we will be asking of the material for this class. The course is designed as an introduction to the methods and theories used in the analysis of American culture. In examining the Civil War as a political phenomenon in American history, we will take an interdisciplinary approach, interrogating the wealth of writing and imagery responding to the war that divided the nation; texts include fiction, biography, history, political tracts and speeches, anthropological writing, journalism, and mass media. Course requirements: Active participation in discussions, short response papers and two longer papers. Meets with POL S 281A. Texts: Henry James, The Bostonian; Charles Chesnutt, The Marrow of Tradition; Stephen Crane; The Red Badge of Courage; Herman Melville, Short Works: Bartleby & Benito Cereno; photocopied course packet.
257A (Introduction to Asian-American Literature)
Introductory survey of Asian-American literature provides introduction to Chinese, Japanese, Filipino, Korean, Hawaiian, South-Asian, and Southeast-Asian American literature and a comparative study of the basic cultural histories of those Asian-American communities from the 1800s to the present. (Meets with AAS 401A) Texts: Shawn Wong, ed., Asian American Literature: A Brief Introduction and Anthology; Bienvenido N. Santos, Scent of Apples; Monica Sone, Nisei Daughter; Gary Pak, The Watcher of Waipuna; G. S. Sharat Chandra, Sari of the Gods.
281A (Intermediate Expository Writing)
T.S. Eliot once wrote, “bad poets imitate, while great poets steal,” or something to that effect. In this section of 281, we will face the dirty little secret about writing, that most good writers have at one point in their careers begged, borrowed, and stolen a phrase here, a word there, or a tone from an admired piece. Most writers begin as imitators, even parodists of another’s style. And in this course we are going to use imitation as a learning tool, a step into that coveted and marvelous thing: a good writing style. To that end, we will look at a number of very good parodists working today and confront issues like voice, word-choice, sentence construction, style, genre, and plagiarism. Texts include The ONION’S Our Dumb Century, Max Beerbohm’s A Christmas Garland, and Monty Python’s The Brand New Monty Python Book. Be prepared to do a lot of writing (3-5 papers). Sense of humor a plus. (No freshmen, Registration Period 1.)
281B (Intermediate Expository Writing)
This course will focus on developing the analytical skills and the close attention to language that contribute to persuasive expository writing. The coruse will use your observations of actual speech in cultural or community sites, in conjunction with literary and critical texts. to explore how we use the language of health and illness to conceptualize ourselves as individuals and as a community. Assignments will include a seires of short response papers and three longer papers that will develop your skills in selected areass: historical analysis of key medical terms, metaphorical analysis, and linguistic ethnography. Required course readings, in addition to a course packet, will include Margaret Edson's play Wit (1998), Susan Sontag's AIDS and Its Metaphors (1989) and Illness as Metaphor (1977); and Malcolm Galdwell's The Tipping Point (2000). Expect to work individually and in peer review groups throughout the quarter. (No freshmen, Registration Period 1.)
281C (Intermediate Expository Writing)
English 281 is designed to prepare you to meet the demands of academic writing by developing your abilities to think critically, read closely and write persuasively. However, rather than focusing on these skills in isolation, this course offers you the opportunity to consider these acts as part of the larger cultural and historical frameworks in which they are situated. By focusing on thinking, reading and writing as social, collaborative acts, this class invites you to consider what readers and writers, including yourself, bring to different texts. We will read and discuss a varied selection of texts--journalistic essays, short stories, social criticism--in order to examine both the methods used by the writers and the audiences that these writers engage. Our materials will be drawn from two different but related historical moments: 1900 and 2000. Despite remarkable incongruities between these eras, the 1890s and the 1990s can be similarly characterized by sweeping upheavals in American poitics, society and culture. We will examine several of these moments of disjunction by exploring such issues as racial and ethnic diversity, cultural and political imperialism, commodification and technological innovation. Focusing on a variety of texts from divergent periods will enable us to envision writing as a series of rhetorical choices specifically fashioned by the writer to communicate to a particular audience on a particular occasion. Similarly, we will re-imagine reading as an interactive process by examining how we as readers bring to each text a specific set of interpretive assumptions which limit and direct the range of meanings we actively construct from a text. (No freshmen, Registration Period 1.) Text: Susan Harris & Melanie Dawson, ed., The American 1890s: A Cultural Reader.
281D (Intermediate Expository Writing)
Rhetorical Communities: Language, Nation, Dissonance. The primary emphasis of this course is to give you lots of practice in writing--in developiong and supporting a thesis, in writing a draft, in integrating material from primary and secondary sources into a text, and making yoru writing clear, interesting, and lively. In this section, there will be a special emphasis on revision, with opportunities provided for you to revise essays before a final draft is turned in (with the aid of feedback from your peers) and afterward (with the aid of my feedback). To help provide a focus for the class, as well as to give you something to write about, I have organized around the complicated and oftentimes fraught relationship between language and nationalism. Nations often define themselves by, and maintain and reproduce themselves through, language--anthems, oral and written hsitories, legal documents, testimonials, biographies, essays, and literature. To understand nations and the phenomenon of nationalisms more fully, then, we must first understand the role that language assumes in social and political dynamics. We will begin by surveying some influential theories of nations and nationalisms by Ernest Renan, Benedict Anderson, Ernest Gellner, and Homi Bhabha before turning our attention to the specific concerns of this course: the rhetorical, political, and ultimately ideological uses of language and their roles in nation building. We then conclude things by considering the ways in which language has been and is being deployed in this, our current era of "transnationalism" -- an era in which traditional understandings and demarcations of nations are continually being reconceived and redrawn with the rise of multinational corporations, capitalism, and information exchange. In addition to the concerns outlined above, we will also want to consider the ways marginalized individuals and groups formulate their own linguistic challenges to "official" narratives of nationalism--a concern that will, I hope, encourage us to consider more carefully how we all are included in and excluded by different political and rhetorical communities. (No freshmen, Registration Period 1.)Texts: Alan Duff, Once Were Warriors; Haunani-Kay Trask, Light in the Crevice Never Seen; photocopied course packet.
281E (Intermediate Expository Writing)
[Writing papers communicating information and opinion to develop accurate, competent, and effective expression.] (No freshmen, Registration Period 1.) Texts: Mary Shelley, Frankenstein; Anthony Burgess, A Clockwork Orange; Philip K. Dick, Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?
281F (Intermediate Expository Writing)
Introduction to Webwriting. This is a class in writing for the internet. This medium is, by its very nature, multimedia, hyper-linked, and interactive; our goal will be to use the medium to deepen and enhance our writing. We will start at the ground level, with an introduction to hypertext and “markup languages.” Course topics will include (but are not limited to): HTML markup techniques; the use and rhetorical value of images, backgrounds, and other visual effects; the technology of writing; the issues involved in writing for a global (or a potentially global) audience; the advantages and disadvantages of writing in hypertext; the Web as a site of artistic and self-expression; the Web as a site for information exchange, public debate, and education; and, finally, the rhetoric of the web. Expect to work individually and in small groups. (Students who already have a degree of HTML expertise should enroll in the senior-level version of this course, ENGL 481 – currently scheduled to be offered again in Spring 2001.) (No freshmen, Registration Period 1.) Text: Musciano & Kennedy, HTML: The Definitive Guide, 3rd ed.
283A (Beginning Verse Writing)
Intensive study of the ways and means of making a poem. Majors only, Registration Period 1. Texts: Nims & Mason, ed., Western Wind: An Introduction to Poetry (4th ed.)
283B (Beginning Verse Writing)
[Intensive study of the ways and means of making a poem.] Majors only, Registration Period 1.
284A (Beginning Short Story Writing)
[Introduction to the theory and practice of writing the short story.] Majors only, Registration Period 1.
284B (Beginning Short Story Writing)
Introduction to the theory and practice of writing the short story. Majors only, Registration Period 1. Text: Willford & Martone, eds., Scribner Anthology of Contemporary Short Fiction.