Autumn Quarter 2008 — Undergraduate Course Descriptions


This course will help students develop practices in reading and enjoying literature. The dominant mode of fiction in Britain during the 19th century was realism. However, there existed alongside the classics other forms of writing, which questioned the very tenets of a realism that claimed to transparently represent life and the world – in these stories, nothing is quite as it seems. We’ll start with appreciating the genre of realism by looking at the works of Jane Austen and George Eliot. Then, we’ll turn to the sensational fiction of Wilkie Collins, as well as the later anti-realist work of Oscar Wilde. Sensational fiction was considered dangerous in Victorian England, as the stories were so shocking that critics were afraid people would react in unseemly ways. Therefore one point of departure in understanding the relationship between realism and these other genres will be to consider the kinds of responses these texts produce in readers – whether the original 19th-century audience or, importantly, ourselves. Texts will likely include: Persuasion, The Mill on the Floss, The Moonstone, and The Picture of Dorian Gray, as well as selections of critical work in a course packet. Course requirements will include group presentations, reading quizzes and active class participation. Students will be asked to write, and revise, two five to seven page papers.


There is a difference, one might suppose at the outset, between merely reading literature and studying it. When literature is the object at or in hand (in the form, say, of a best-seller, a famous poem, a harlequin romance), the commonplace notion of reading suggests entertainment; or, when things get tough, and the weight of everyday life pressurizes living into burden, reading literature becomes a kind of placea world into which a reader escapes, for a time, from the cares and curses of the real world. What both notions of reading fail to consider is the fundamental processes that actuate and trouble the understanding when one sets out to read. Reading literature is, of course, not mere entertainment, and it can be a strange, uncomfortable destination for an escape.
In this course, then, well try to experience, observe, and describe the often invisible processes that make reading happen, in an effort to understand how little we understand about what reading is, and, moreover, what it does and does not do. The literary texts well consider span an expansive historical and cultural gap: from 16th century British imperial fantasy to 20th century American science fiction. These texts, across their distances and differing ways of thinking, work in responsive ways to the actual conditions of the world in which they were written and read. But they all attempt in some way to confront and challenge that world by imaginatively leaving itand well see how such a leaving is hardly an escape. Likewise, by the end of it all you will, hopefully, have begun to reconceptualize your own experience of reading, and, thereby, of imagining the actual world in which we live.
This is a W course, so writing requirements will include several shorter reading responses and a longer, final essay (10-15 pages) with feedback and revision. Each student will also be responsible for a group presentation during the quarter. NOTE: As these are dense texts, the reading schedule will be demanding. Be prepared to spend a lot of time reading so that youre able to contribute significantly to in-class discussions and have enough familiarity with the texts to sustain an extended, thorough argument.
Texts will include Thomas Mores Utopia, Shakespeares The Tempest, Jonathan Swifts Gullivers Travels, Elizabeth Bishops poetry, and Ursula Le Guins The Dispossessed.


200 C READING LITERATURE (Novel Curricula) Grant M-Th 10:30-11:20 13050

As the novel emerged in the eighteenth century, numerous authors and critics of the time period debated not only its literary potential, but its practical utility. And, it seems that for many, one of the novel’s most “useful” qualities could be found in its capacity to both teach and entertain. In his Rambler No. 4, Samuel Johnson notes that “these familiar histories may perhaps be made of greater use than the solemnities of professed morality, and convey the knowledge of vice and virtue with more efficacy than axioms and definitions.” Yet, behind this enthusiasm for the novel’s didactic potential lies an anxiety about achieving a perfectly exact blend of entertainment and instruction, for to supplement one’s didactic agenda with too egregious an addition of entertainment value could potentially provoke unintended results and aberrant behavior. Thus, Johnson qualifies his praise of the novel with a disclaimer, cautioning authors to censure their portrayal of reality, narrating only the “best examples” of human experience as “these books are written chiefly to the young, the ignorant, and the idle, to whom they serve as lectures of conduct and introductions into life.”

Johnson’s analysis of the educational potential of the novel form as seen in his Rambler No. 4 will be our jumping off point for this course. Keeping Johnson’s prescription for socially responsible novels in mind, we will examine the novels of female authors of the mid to late eighteenth century and ask not only what sort of curriculum their fiction offers to female readers, but how this curriculum is communicated and how each author negotiates her text’s precarious balance between the demands of education and entertainment. This framework will allow us to refine our close reading skills, practice posing critical questions that will inform our writing, and examine the novel form as an active participant in the 18th century debate concerning female education.

Course requirements will include a fairly heavy reading load, discussion leadership and response responsibilities, active in class participation, reading quizzes, and a final exam. Because this is a W course, you are also required to write and revise either one 10 – 15 page paper or two 5 – 7 page papers with revisions.

Novels (In order of use)

* Secondary Materials will be available either in a course pack, or on e-reserve.
Possible Authors: John Locke, Mary Wollestonecraft, Jean-Jacques Rosseau,


200 D READING LITERATURE (“The Anxieties and Pleasures of Reading Literature”) Anderson M-Th 11:30-12:20 13051

In this section of Engl 200 we will read texts that attempt to explicitly expose the act of reading for what it is: an active, frustrating, pleasurable, push-and-pull exercise that ultimately resists a final definition of itself. What is reading? What is this “thing” we do and more importantly, what is our role and what are our responsibilities upon opening a book? This course will challenge preconceived notions and definitions of the terms “reader,” “text,” and “author.” Often these terms are accepted at face value and as self-evident. However, as we investigate their possible roles during the act of reading literature we might find that they fail to maintain their popular definitions. However, whatever anxiety resulting from such an investigation will productively fuel our class discussions and your own writing.

To this end we will read Italo Calvino’s uncannily self-referential novel If on a winter’s night a traveler; Mark Z. Danielewski’s encyclopedic and labyrinthine House of Leaves, as well as short stories by H.P. Lovecraft, Thomas Ligotti, Shelley Jackson, Woody Allen, Jorge Luis Borges, and others. We will also be reading short critical work that explores the act of reading. In order to further our inquiry into the nature of reading literature and enrich our discussion of literature we will also consider “reading” a film (Pulp Fiction or 21 Grams) that, like the above literary texts, invites engaged and active participation.

The assigned writing for this class will take the form of online forum postings following the readings, and a series of short papers with revisions. Students will be divided into groups and will present on designated discussion days. There will also be opportunities to peer-review one another’s work. Participation in class discussion is absolutely necessary. The reading for this class will be demanding, but infinitely rewarding.

Course Packet:
The Shadow at the Bottom of the World, Thomas Ligotti
The Call of Cthulhu, H.P. Lovecraft
The Library of Babel, Jorge Luis Borges
The Kugelmass Episode, Woody Allen
“Literature and Life,” Gilles Deleuze
“The Death of the Author,” Roland Barthes
“What is an Author?” Michel Foucault
“Writing as Reading” Susan Sontag
“Inhabiting House of Leaves,” N. Katherine Hayles
“Liminal Terror and Collective Identity,” Matt Cardin


200 E READING LITERATURE (READING LITERATURE) Hernandez M-Th 12:30-1:20 13052

English 200 introduces the study of reading literature and, hopefully, the enjoyment of it by focusing on a sampling of American and European texts of the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries in an array or formats: novels, short stories, non-fiction prose, drama, and poetry. This section is organized around science in literature as a point of entry for discussing hot topic social issues such as race, class, and gender. However, this in no way should limit our reading practices as we explore many possible interpretations of the texts, or as we analyze writing techniques that enhance the reading experience. The ultimate goal of this class is, first and foremost, to have a good time engaging texts through reading and group discussion; secondly, to recognize the relevance of these texts—to recognize ways in which science affected social thought at the times these pieces were written, as well as to recognize ways in which these texts still resonate with social preoccupations of today.

Our reading will include a small handful of novels and a significantly larger selection of short stories and poetry by authors tentatively to include: Edgar Allan Poe, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Walt Whitman, George Du Maurier, E.T.A. Hoffmann, Lord Alfred Tennyson, Coventry Patmore, and others. The following texts will be available through the University Bookstore: Hawthorne, The House of the Seven Gables and The Blithedale Romance; Chessnutt, The Marrow of Tradition; Freud, Dora: An Analysis of a Case of Hysteria; Ibsen, A Doll’s House. Additionally, a course pack will be available at Ave. Copy on University Way.

Course requirements: The final grade will be based on regular contribution to class discussion, several writing assignments, and the final exam. As this is a “W” course, writing will play a key role in analyzing the assigned literature. Each student will be required to write two short analytical essays (3-4 pages in length each), one major essay (5-7 pages), as well as revisions of each

200 F READING LITERATURE (Conceptions of Self in Literature) Overaa M-Th 1:30-2:20 13053

“The function of literature,” American literary critic Lionel Trilling claimed, “through all its mutations, has been to make us aware of the particularity of selves.” While one might propose a number of counterarguments about the “function of literature,” Trilling does succeed in identifying “selfhood” as one of literature’s principal themes. In this class we will read three novels and a number of short stories, poems, and critical articles to explore how conceptions of selfhood have evolved over the past 200 years. This course is also designed to familiarize you with different periods of literature and the dominant modes of thought that have influenced literature at various historical junctures. The overall course goals are to hone your: 1) critical thinking skills; 2) ability to analyze literary texts; and 3) ability to write about literature. Student responsibilities include daily attendance, active participation in discussions and activities, and two 5-7 page papers with revisions.


207 A INTRO CULTURE ST (Introduction to Cultural Studies) Wang M-Th 9:30- 13060

Interdisciplinary and self-critical in nature, Cultural Studies has constantly redefined itself and undergone transformation since it was first established as a legitimate “way of thinking.” Beginning by tracing the historical emergence of what we now understand as Cultural Studies, this course will introduce you to the general theoretical development of this field and familiarize you with the key concepts and major debates that shape its various modes of inquiry. On our way to apprehending the richness and complexity of Cultural Studies, of how it works and what it does, we will also investigate more critically its methods and approaches by discussing the following questions: How do we read from a Cultural Studies perspective? More specifically, how do we “maintain” a Cultural Studies perspective when the subject matter and object of inquiry can be better categorized as studies of race, gender, and class? In other words, what counts as Cultural Studies? What is “culture” in Cultural Studies, especially in the age of globalization? Primary materials may include works by Stuart Hall, Raymond Williams, Judith Butler, Michel Foucault, Lisa Low, Aihwa Ong, Edward Said, and Arjun Appadurai. In addition to reading theoretical work compiled in a course packet and participating in class discussions, you will be required to collaboratively design and conduct a Cultural Studies group project that utilizes relevant knowledge and ideas covered in class. Each group will be working closely with me on the subject of their own choosing. This may include, but is not limited to, interpreting a variety of texts such as literature, visual images, music, video, and performance. Other assignments include weekly in-class writings, response papers, group presentations, and a final project report.

207 B INTRO CULTURE ST (“Cultural Studies in Excess: Technoculture and the Senses”) Sayers M-Th 11:30- 13061

It’s rather easy to get distracted these days, and we have the keywords to prove it: “on demand,” “hyperattention” and “multitasking,” to name but a few. Of course, these keywords aren’t empty. They are associated with practices—embodied practices, cultural practices, technological practices. That’s quite a complex mix, the analysis of which demands an array of texts and contexts. In this course, we will attempt such an analysis by, first, historically locating Cultural Studies and learning how it emerged as a critical framework. We will then follow a series of trajectories, unpacking how technology is culturally embedded and unfolding its effects on sense experience. These trajectories will explore conversations about animation and what is implied by “being animated,” in tandem with inquiries into technology-enhanced perception, human-technology relations, the senses and consumer culture, and digitizing race, gender and sexuality. Along the way, we’ll also consider how Cultural Studies, which tends to situate and make sense of bodies as socially or discursively constructed, might address some more transitional aspects of embodiment (including sensation, movement and affect) that are difficult to pin down. But for now, one thing is certain: we’ll entertain—and even get distracted by—matters in excess of thought.

Student Writing: A series of short blogging assignments on the class blog will instruct students in how to read through a Cultural Studies lens and stress the critical value of that lens. Over the duration of the quarter, students will translate their blog entries and in-class participation into a final research paper (6-8 pages). If interested, students will be encouraged to produce digital “webtext” versions of their final papers.

Writing credit (a “W”) is an option for this course, in which case the above writing requirements will be adjusted.

And a course reader with readings related to comics, cybernetics, artificial intelligence, cultural studies methodologies, and digitizing race, gender, and sexuality


211 C MID/REN LIT (Patronage, Print, and Authorship before 1800) Coldewey M-Th 9:30- 13064

In this course we will examine literary texts before the end of the seventeenth century alongside sources describing the material conditions that produced them. We will start with some Old and Middle English texts, including The Dream of the Rood and The Battle of Maldon, Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, some Chaucer and some Malory, paying attention to the shift from manuscript and print cultures. Then we read four plays and a masque to understand the changing conditions of public entertainment. Finally, we track the course of sponsored literary works from the 15th through the 18th centuries, considering songs and sonnets and signature pieces from Wyatt and Surrey to the late 17th Century.
Coursework: three quizzes and a class presentation


212 A LIT ENLTMT & REVOLN (The Age of Enlightenment and Revolution: Solitude and Society) Butwin TTh 1:30-3:20 13065

As direct heirs of what has been called the “invention of liberty” in the 18th and 19th centuries, we have been obliged to learn new ways of maintaining our individuality in a community made up of millions of other free-wheeling individualists. One strategy, of course, is to go it alone; another is to design large, well-populated states that set out to insure the individual liberty of all members. Both have their perils. In this course we will discuss efforts, imagined and real, to reconcile the benefits and liabilities of solitude and society. Lecture, discussion, short essays written in and out of class.

[Additional readings listed in the syllabus will be available as “ER”= Electronic Reserve through the Undergraduate Library and as e-mail attachments—“ATT”.]


213 A MODERN/POST MOD LITERATURE (Time and Consciousness) Terry M-Th 8:30- 13066

This course is a survey of English and American literature from the twentieth century, with close attention given to literary form and technique as responses to the experience of “modernity.” Instead of approaching the modern/postmodern divide as an absolute, we will investigate the evolution of similar problems and techniques in literature that occur across the twentieth century. We will place particular emphasis on narrative style and literary representations of how time is experienced. To that end, we will begin by exploring the modernist preoccupation with the individual’s “inner life,” and trace how writers throughout the twentieth century attempt to represent subjective experience in very different ways. We will read five novels over the course of the quarter, and along the way we will survey a number of modernist poets (Eliot, Pound, H.D., Loy) before spending several days concentrating on perhaps the most famous of all modernist texts, T.S. Eliot’s The Waste Land. In our discussions, we will investigate the texts’ forms, patterns, techniques, ideas, cultural context, and intertextuality. For the final paper, you will be encouraged to develop your own line of questioning within an area of interest to you.

Course requirements include a demanding reading schedule, active in-class participation, response papers, a group presentation, and a final research paper of 6-8 pages.

• Photocopied course packet containing poetry and critical essays


213 B MODERN/POST MOD LITERATURE (“What about all this writing?”: Readings in the Twentieth Century) Jaussen MW 2:30-4:20 19654

We can safely say that the twentieth century, whatever else it may have been, was marked by remarkable and unbelievably diverse artistic production. At times, this cultural range can be a bit overwhelming. Yet, in the midst of the variety, there are certain perceivable patterns that, when understood, can make the period much more accessible. This course, as an introduction to the literature of the time, will serve to sketch out some of those patterns, conflicts, and artistic developments. We will examine the century as a sequence of literary responses to specific questions regarding the nature of narrative, the role and origin of poetry, and the relationship between literature and that which it is not.

We will consider a series of textual pairings (or triplets), moving more or less chronologically through the century. We will begin with two modernist novels, Joseph Conrad’s The Secret Agent and Virginia Woolf’s Mrs. Dalloway, reading them as answers to the question “what’s in a story?” From there, we will move to T. S. Eliot’s The Waste Land, William Carlos Williams’s Spring and All, and selections from Langston Hughes. Each of these poets offers a very different vision of what poetry can and ought to be (Williams, for instance, hated The Waste Land, while Hughes, unlike the other two, was unapologetically political). None of them get the answer completely right, at least according to the next writers on our list, Allen Ginsberg and Frank O’Hara, whose works will take us into poetic realms “after” modernism (and maybe even “post”). Finally, in a partial return to narrative, we will end by reading Susan Howe’s multi-generic Singularities and Jeanette Winterson’s late-century novel Written on the Body, two texts which use literary technique to press beyond literature, though never beyond language, into the most intimate realms of personal identity.

Other voices will invariably make themselves heard as we proceed, some critical, mostly poetic. It will be a quarter of remarkable intensity, I can tell you that. We will dance from anarchist bombing plots to stream-of-consciousness flower shopping, from poetic corpses unearthed to radical imaginations, from prophetic vortex chanting to “I do this, I do that,” from L=A=N=G=U=A=G=E games to visceral love. And I expect you to respond equally aggressively, critically, and, in the spirit of the times, with an absolute commitment to creative intelligence.
You will be expected to read a great deal of difficult texts throughout the quarter. This will be encouraged through mandatory weekly reading quizzes. You will be expected to participate actively in each period, as well as in group presentations. Finally, you will be required to write two short response papers and a final 6-8 page critical essay.

Book List:

Conrad, Joseph. The Secret Agent. Modern Library Classics. ISBN 9780812973051

Eliot, T. S. The Waste Land and Other Writings Modern Library Classics, New Ed edition
(2002). ISBN 0375759344

Woolf, Virginia. Mrs. Dalloway. Harcourt/Harvest ISBN 0156628708

O’Hara, Frank. Lunch Poems. City Lights ISBN 0872860353

Ginsberg, Allen. Howl and Other Poems. City Lights ISBN 0872860175

Williams, William Carlos. Imaginations. New Directions. ISBN 0811202291

Winterson, Jeanette. Written on the Body. Vintage. ISBN 9780679744474

Howe, Susan. Singularities. Wesleyan UP. ISBN 0819511943

A course website will direct you to other readings.

225 A SHAKESPEARE (SHAKESPEARE) Mukherjee M-Th 8:30- 13067

An introduction to Shakespeare's world and theatre. We will situate a selection of Shakespeare's plays in the historical conditions in Renaissance England, exploring the topicality of the plays in relation to the social, political and cultural conditions in which they were written. Some of our main thematic concerns will be the theatrical conditions at the turn of the
> seventeenth century, marriage, family, economics, gender relations, and monarchical power. We will pair the plays with various documents from the age such as religious sermons, philosophical writings, political treatises, anti-theatrical tracts, and a blockbuster from one of Shakespeare's theatrical predecessors. While the major objective of the course is to understand Shakespeare historically, students will get ample opportunity to hone in close-reading and analytical skills.
As a W course, they can expect to produce approximately 15 pages of revised and polished critical prose on the readings. Plays to be read: Shakespeare's The Taming of the Shrew, Twelfth Night, Richard II, Hamlet, and Thomas Kyd's The Spanish Tragedy.
Requirements: Regular attendance, participation, three short tests, two short papers (3-4 pages), and a final research paper (7-10 pages) revised and expanded from one of the short papers.



229 A ENGL LIT: 1600-1800 (English Literary Culture 1600-1800) Shields MW 9:30-11:20 13068

This introductory survey of seventeenth- and eighteenth-century British
literature will explore how writers responded to immense social changes in an
era of global exploration, religious conflict, and political revolution. Above all, the writers of this period questioned what gives one person or nation the right to govern other people and nations. As we read a range of works including John Milton?s Paradise Lost, Alexander Pope?s The Rape of the Lock, Aphra Behn?s Oroonoko and Jonathan Swift?s Gulliver?s Travels, we
will explore and evaluate multiple answers to this overarching question.

By situating seventeenth- and eighteenth-century British poetry, drama, and prose in its social context, this class will explore the relationship between literature and history while also honing your analytical skills. Course requirements will include a midterm and final examination and two short papers.

230 A ENGL LIT: AFTER 1800 (Literature in Revision: Parallel Novels) Patel M-Th 12:30- 13069

This course rummages through the 19th and 20th century British literary canon to grapple with revisions, prequels, rewrites, and sequels of literature. The class will be discussing the ways in which writers have rearticulated themes, characterizations, cultural representations, gender and racial issues while complicating the category of protagonist. Course assessment includes two papers, a presentation and a final exam


230 B ENGL LIT: AFTER 1800 (English Literary Culture: After 1800) Mondal TTh 1:30-3:20 19302

"English Literary Culture After 1800" covers a broad span of literature, including the Romantic, Victorian, and Modern periods. While the quarter system necessarily limits the extent to which we can cover each of these periods, we shall examine some of the interesting trends and compelling works that each period offers. Some unifying themes we will explore across literary periods include issues around gender, literary (and generally, aesthetic) style, notions of national identity, imperialism, class, and sexuality. We will begin with several of the Romantic poets, including William Wordsworth and William Blake. We will also assess several foundational late eighteenth-century works--among them, Mary Wollstonecraft's A Vindication of the Rights of Woman, and a few critiques of the Gothic novel--that provide important context for our first novel, Jane Austen's Northanger Abbey. For our study of the Victorian period, we will explore a range of authors and works, among them Thomas Carlyle's "An Occasional Discourse on the Nigger Question" and John Stuart Mill's response, "The Negro Question"; several of Christina Rossetti's poems regarding gender and marriage, poetry by Alfred Lord Tennyson and Robert Browning; some of Charles Dickens' and Elizabeth Barrett Browning's work on class conflict and labor; Robert Louis Stevenson's novella The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde; H. Rider Haggard's imperial romance King Solomon's Mines; and Oscar Wilde's play, The Importance of Being Earnest. For the Modern period, we will explore works by Thomas Hardy, William Butler Yeats, T. S. Eliot, Salman Rushie, V.S. Naipaul, and Joseph Conrad. Our readings will cover a range of genres and styles that will encourage you to think about the relationship between genre and period; to this end, we will evaluate literature in its historical and cultural context. Expect a rigorous reading load, group presentations, active and consistent class participation, a mid-term exam, short response papers, and one 5-7 page final paper.

Also note that most of the course readings (except Austen and Haggard) will be compiled in a course packet that will be available for purchase the first week of class.

Student learning

242 A READING FICTION (Reading Fiction: Immersion and Interactivity) Welsh M-Th 8:30- 13070

In her article "Immersion vs. Interactivity: Virtual Reality and Literary Theory," Marie-Laure Ryan argues that immersion and interactivity are inversely related modes of engaging a work of fiction. The more closely the possible world conjured by a story resembles the reader's actual world, the more easily the reader can immerse herself in that world. Ryan claims that
interactivity disrupts the immersive experience by drawing attention to artifice of the text and to the act of reading. This class will take up Ryan's claim as a starting hypothesis to explore the relation between immersion and interactivity in fiction. The course will be divided equally between immersion and interactivity, as we will examine texts exemplary of each mode to determine if, and possibly where, there is crossover. Readings will likely include selections from Flaubert, Howells, Chesnutt, Capote, Mailer, Borges, Calvino, Marquez, Barths, Barthelme Danielewski, and Mateas and Stern.

This class offers a "W" credit, which means students will be expected to produce a total of 10-15 pages of formal, academic writing, which has gone through a cycle of instructor feedback and revision. This requirement will be met with two short essays of 2 pages each and one longer essay of 6-8 pages.


242 B READING FICTION (Household Gods and Domestic Angels: Women and the Victorian Novel) Oldham M-Th 12:30- 13071

“Man must be pleased; but him to please/ Is woman's pleasure,” writes Coventry Patmore in his tremendously influential poem “The Angel in the House.” The meek, submissive Angel of Patmore’s poem (based on his own angelic wife Emily) would come to serve as a model for wifely behavior across England in the Victorian period. In fact, the image of the Angel in the House was so pervasive that in 1931, Virginia Woolf declared that “killing the Angel in the House [is] part of the occupation of the woman writer.” Much current scholarship seeks to complicate the stable notion of “separate-spheres ideology,” which positions women firmly within the home and men firmly without, in the wider world of commerce. This course, then, will examine how the Victorian domestic novel contends with, reproduces and sometimes challenges, conceptions of the household angel. We will begin the course by reading selections from Patmore’s poem, as well as short selections from Sarah Ellis’ political tract Wives of England, Isabella Beeton’s domestic manual Book of Household Management, and John Ruskin’s “Of Queen’s Gardens.” From there we will read several novels, including Elizabeth Gaskell’s Cranford and North and South and Charlotte Bronte’s Shirley.
This course will allow you to develop your close reading and analytical skills, as well as providing you with a critical framework for placing novels in conversation with other genres such as poetry, conduct and domestic manuals and essays. Course requirements include a heavy reading schedule, student-presentations and discussion-leading responsibilities. Because this is a W course, you will have the option of writing (and revising) either two 5-7 page papers or one longer 10-15 page paper.

*Course pack, available at Ave Copy Center, will include readings from Ruskin, Ellis and Beeton, as well as secondary criticism by Mary Poovey, Nancy Armstrong and Elizabeth Langland



History repeats itself. This saying, while commonplace, elides a complex understanding of history by first assuming that "history" is a transparent and stable domain, untroubled by questions about its production, its rightful subjects, and its durability in the present.
For Fall Quarter 2008, we'll begin with a series of questions that unravel the problem of "history": What makes history? Where do we look for history? Who become subjects capable of world-historical action; and who are confined to a more limited sphere of agency? What are the costs that come with privileging an "official" archive of "authoritative" sources? And what are the political effects of using history to reflect a nation or a people?

We'll ground these questions in relation to two sets of readings. The first offers us a method for reading "history" critically. Here, we will draw upon the "keyword" methodology developed by cultural studies theorist Raymond Williams. According to Williams, keywords mark concepts that are taken for granted as having a unified, self-evident meaning; yet shifts in a keyword's usage open onto contestation and conflict. By tracing multiple and contradictory meanings, the study of
keywords focuses on social relations, power, and horizons of possibility for the present and the future. The second set of course texts is fiction that explores the history of transatlantic slavery, its representation, and its afterlife. One of the meanings the Oxford English Dictionary (OED) ascribes to "history" is its distinction from fiction; yet the fiction that we'll read fundamentally challenges the notion that what passes as "history" is sufficient for representing the past. By positioning their stories in relation to history—its sources and its subjects—these texts make claims about the uses of fiction for representing alternative histories that are often obscured within official accounts. Because the reading covers the nineteenth and twentieth century, it will offer us the occasion to shuttle through the different meanings of "history," drawing upon both Williams' gloss on history and the OED entry. Perhaps more importantly, it will also provide us with a concrete understanding of what it means to say that "race" has a history.

Building on Williams' work, one of our main objectives for the course will be to collaboratively develop an essay on "history" as a keyword. Selections from Keywords for American Cultural Studies (slavery, border, south, and modern) will provide models for constructing a keyword essay, as well as offer touchstones for the uses of history to each of these interrelated keywords. Students will be asked to: (1) contribute to a reference guide of online sources that offer context and background on each of the novels, (2) post weekly responses and peer comments to a class blog, (3) contribute to a collaborative essay on "history" through a class wiki, and (4) write a 6- to 8-page final paper that draws upon the insights developed through the two course
websites (blog and wiki).

Required Readings: Herman Melville's Benito Cereno (1855),
Maria Amparo Ruiz de Burton's Who Would Have Thought It (1872),
William Faulkner's Go Down Moses (1940),
and Michelle Cliff's No Telephone to Heaven (1987). A course pack will be available with selections from A People's History of the United States by Howard Zinn, as well as selections from Toni Morrison, Gloria Anzaldua, W.E.B. DuBois, James
Baldwin, and other critical materials.

242 D READING FICTION (Fictional Worlds) Mahmoud M-Th 2:30- 13073

This course seeks to help students develop a critical approach to fiction, travel writing, and film by problematizing the concept of fiction itself. This means asking questions about what constitutes fiction as opposed to nonfiction. What does fiction encompass and what does it exclude? Are the lines between fiction and nonfiction always clearly identifiable or do they sometimes blur?
Through close reading and analysis, students will learn to explore texts employing a particular focus/ theoretical framework to examine how texts, as cultural productions, actively contest, negotiate, and/or perpetuate (rather than simply passively represent) issues of class, gender, race, sexuality, national identity, and empire at particular historical moments.
We will look at British and French travel writing on 19th century Egypt, two 19th century “sensation” novels, a 20th century postcolonial novel, and a film. Texts include Gustave Flaubert, Flaubert in Egypt: A Sensibility on Tour (1849); Wilkie Collins, The Woman in White (1859); Bram Stoker, Dracula (1897); Ahdaf Soueif, The Map of Love (1999), and a course package of historical/ theoretical readings.
Course requirements include regular attendance, a demanding reading schedule, quizzes, team presentations, active in-class participation, and participation on Go-post. To fulfill the W requirement: you must write and revise 2 short papers (each two pages long) and one final 6-8 page-paper. Total amount of (revised) writing: 10-12 pages.


243 A READING POETRY (Economies of Excess and Magic) Maestas MW 1:30-, TTh 1:30- 13075

The poems that we will read in this course will demonstrate a connection between an economics of excess and a theory of magic. The Reading method of this course will rely on a genealogical approach rather than a chronological approach. This means that we will be looking back through millennia of poetry. We’ll begin with poems from the 21st century and much like Walter Benjamin’s angel of history who in its present moment is propelled into the future by a storm called progress while looking back at the debris of the past we too will look back through centuries of poetry. Reading somewhat like a flaneur, we will encounter poems from ancient Rome, Anglo-Saxon riddles, the Medieval world, the Romantic Poets, and Victorian poets through reading 20th and 21st century poetry with a particular slant toward the avant-garde. Readings will include selections from Ovid, Catullus, “The Dream of the Rood” poem, riddles from Aldhelm, Han-Shan, Li Po, poems from Chaucer, Spenser, Donne, Shakespeare, Whitman, Dickinson, Crane, the Berkeley Renaissance poets Duncan, Blaser, and Spicer, several of the New York School poets, the Beat Poets, the Oulipo, L=A=N=G=U=A=G=E Poetry, as well as contemporary poetry from “right now” and “tomorrow”. Critical Readings that will frame this course include: Karl Marx, Roland Barthes, Geroges Bataille, and Michael Taussig.

Requirements: Daily attendance, one presentation, three papers (of two, three, and five pages, respectively) and various in-class assignments.

Text: photocopied course packet, anthologies, and hypertexts

244 A READING DRAMA (What’s Past Is Prologue: The Stuff of Theatre and the Debris of the Past) Hansen M-Th 11:30- 13076

The reading of drama demands a complexity unique to the genre, since a play must be read not only as literature, but as a performable work and as a representation of the culture which produced it, and the series of cultures (including our own) which has allowed it to endure. This course will attempt to approach the study of the dramatic text accordingly, from a variety of angles, and through different types of assignments.
Beginning with several Medieval mystery plays, and continuing through the centuries with a focus ultimately weighted on the twentieth century, we’ll take as a general framework for thinking about the works, and about the theatre and its development more generally, this idea behind the course title. Whether we consider Joyce’s notion of history as a “nightmare from which [we are] trying to awake,” or the idea, articulated by Septimus in Tom Stoppard’s Arcadia that “we shed as we pick up, like travelers who must carry everything in their arms,” the presence of that which came before looms over all literary works, but is perhaps especially significant in the drama. The question of the Past affects our reading of play texts both externally—as a consideration of the progressive development of the genre and its dependence upon and conflict with tradition and precedent, and as a specific demand for research and education to understand a play’s meaning and context—and as a thematic concern within the plays themselves, as characters work to navigate and negotiate their own histories and the histories of others.
As mentioned above, students will be required to complete a variety of assignments in order to address various aspects of the study of drama. English 244 meets the university “W” requirement, which means that students must produce 10-15 pages of graded, out-of-class writing, that must undergo significant revision. These may take the form of two 5-7 page papers, or one longer one. (For more specific W-course criteria, please see ). Besides these papers, course work may include brief reading quizzes, along with projects addressing technical issues of staging plays (like costume and set design), possible research work and/or group presentations, reviews of local productions and performances of scenes (no acting skill required).

BOOK LIST (subject to adjustment/addition):
Shakespeare, William. Hamlet.
Gay, John. The Beggar’s Opera.
Ibsen. A Doll’s House.
Brecht, Bertolt. The Threepenny Opera.
Beckett, Samuel. Endgame ISBN: 0-8021-5024-1
Soyinka, Wole. Death and the King’s Horseman.
Stoppard, Tom. Arcadia ISBN: 0-571-16933-3
Kushner, Tony. Angels in America (Millennium Approaches and Perestroika)
ISBN: 1-55936-061-5/1-55936-073-9
* Besides the book list, there will also be a course reader available for purchase at the beginning of the quarter which will include critical and secondary materials, and some dramatic texts not ordered in book form (including the medieval mystery plays).
* Not all ISBN numbers are listed here because I don’t have specific editions in mind. The nice thing about studying drama is that plays can be had used for very cheap, so any edition is fine (even for those listed).

250 A INTRO TO AM LIT (The Locations of American Nationalism) Hisayasu M-Th 9:30- 13077

Like many other surveys of American Literature, this class will ask how literature has contributed to the construction of national identity and what Benedict Anderson has called “the imagined community” of nationalism. In this particular class, we will focus our attention more specifically upon representations of place and location in order to see how American “character” has been defined and re-defined according to where it has been historically “located.” Guided by contemporary criticism and theory in American Literary Studies, we will travel through and across a variety of locales – from the domestic spaces of the traditional family, to the Western frontier, and to the streets of the great American metropolises. We will also examine a number of texts that put pressure on the boundaries and limits of these spaces – the different forms of imagining national belonging that are excluded or effaced in the process of representing American community.
The reading load for this class will be heavy and will include Hannah Foster’s The Coquette, Maria Luis Burton’s The Squatter and the Don, Charles Chesnutt’s The Marrow of Tradition, Nella Larsen’s Passing, and John Dos Passos’s Manhattan Transfer. Shorter class readings (available online) may include texts from Thomas Jefferson, Walt Whitman, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Herman Melville, Stephen Crane, Gwendolyn Brooks, Alfred Kazin, James Baldwin, and Leslie Marmon Silko. Work for the course includes participation in class discussion and activities, weekly short, informal entries in a collective online journal, a 5-7 page essay, and a final exam.

250 B INTRO TO AM LIT (The American Imagination: Progress, Exploration, and Science Fictions) Chang M-Th 11:30- 13078

HENRY DAVID THOREAU ONCE SAID, “The world is but a canvas to the imagination.” And central to the “American imagination” is a preoccupation with exploration, power, progress, innovation, and technology. It is no wonder then that writing about science, discovery, invention, and science fiction flourished in the United States. How then might we trace and track these themes, tropes, and formations as illuminating threads in American literatures from the US and its diaspora? What might these literatures reveal to us, reveal about us, and reveal about our culture? This class will take up these “threads” of possibility and impossibility in various American literatures, including texts not often considered sci fi, in order to see how and what these texts argue, narrate, hide, perpetuate, and complicate our understanding of American histories, politics, technologies, and ideologies. Texts may include in whole or in excerpt: Thomas Jefferson, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Mark Twain, Edward Bellamy, Emily Dickinson, Charlotte Perkins Gilman, Edgar Allen Poe, H.P. Lovecraft, Jack London, Elmer Rice, Fritz Lang’s Metropolis, C.L. Moore, Vannevar Bush, Ray Bradbury, Allen Ginsberg, Ralph Ellison, Thomas Pynchon, Samuel Delaney, Ridley Scott’s Blade Runner, William Gibson, Don Delillo, Cory Doctorow, Octavia Butler, and others.

A REQUIREMENT for this class is a well-developed curiosity about the world, about the culture we live in, and about the cultural productions we imagine, produce, and consume. In other words, this class is about reading, critiquing, and analyzing our culture through literature. Martin Lister and Liz Wells, authors of “Seeing Beyond Belief,” argue for just this kind of curiosity, a methodology for unpacking cultural productions, such as novels or images or websites or film; they say, “Cultural Studies allows the analyst to attend to the many moments within the cycle of production, circulation and consumption of [a text] through which meanings accumulate, slip and shift” (Reading Contexts 459). They argue that our understandings of identities, meanings, and power, as well as the intersections of cultural and social locations like race, gender, class, nation, and sexuality, can be excavated through the analysis of the texts we create and consume. This class will spend the quarter reading, thinking, writing about various literatures and how and what these texts argue, reveal, narrate, hide, perpetuate, and complicate the world we live in.

FINALLY, as a class, we will engage the techniques and practices of reading and enjoying literature. We will identify and develop different ways to read different kinds of texts—from verse to prose to visual and digital—and understand and develop strategies, habits, and perspectives of reading, thinking, and writing. Foremost, we will read with pleasure and for pleasure. We will also rhetorically read, close read, read for analysis. And lastly, we will read and deploy literature as theory, as dramatizing the concerns, wonders, struggles, and politics of lived life and experience.

We will do a bit of writing in this class and W Credit arrangements are available. The class will also include film and new media texts.

250 C INTRO TO AM LIT (Passing as American) Patterson T-Th 12:30-2:20 13079

In this course, we will consider how literature has played an important role in constructing a sense of what it means to be “American.” This course is not a survey of American literature, but rather an introduction to the issues, problems, and questions raised by some of its texts. In particular, we will consider two important and recurring themes in American literature—captivity and passing—in order to see the varieties of ways writers have had of addressing the problem of creating and maintaining national identities. We will be reading texts that complicate our understanding of what it means to be an American and what it means to be an author. We will be reading and discussing the works intensively. Requirements will include in-class writing assignments, two essays, and a final exam. Texts: Nella Larsen, Passing; Frederick Douglass, Narrative of the Life; Hannah Foster, The Coquette; Art Spiegelman, Maus; Edith Wharton, House of Mirth; and a course reader.

257 A INTRO ASIAN-AM LIT (Introduction to Asian-American Literature) Wong MW 12:30-2:20 13080

Introductory survey of Asian American literature from 19th century to the present. The course will cover not only the writings of Asian Americans and Asian Pacific Islanders, but also the social history of Asian American communities.

281 A INTERMED EXPOS WRIT (Intermediat Expository Writing) Jones MW 8:30-10:20 13081

There are two primary objectives for this course:

1) Throughout the quarter, students will be "writing papers communicating information and opinion to develop accurate, competent, and effective expression." While there are many approaches to writing, we will be approaching writing through the lenses of classical and contemporary rhetorical theory. In other words, we will be concerned with the various rhetorical strategies available to you as a writer such as increasing your audience awareness and working on style and clarity, hence the title of the primary reading listed below.

2) This course will also be an opportunity for you to familiarize yourself with different forms of academic news criticism. As citizens of a democracy, it's necessary to be able to think critically about the information provided to us by the press and our political leaders to ensure that we make informed decisions such as the one you will hopefully make in November.


Students will write two 4-5 page essays. Each student will also write a 4-5 page book review and lead a class discussion about the book s/he has reviewed with another classmate.

Primary Readings:

Style: Ten Lessons in Clarity and Grace-Joseph M. Williams (ISBN: 0321024087)

The Realm of Rhetoric-Chaim Perelman

Readings to be Reviewed and Presented by the Students:

The Presidency and the Rhetoric of Foreign Crisis-Denise M. Bostdorff The Press Effect-Kathleen Hall Jamieson and Paul Waldman Public Opinion-Walter Lippmann Public & Its Problems-John Dewey Why Deliberative Democracy?-Amy Gutmann and Dennis Thompson News as Hegemonic Reality: American Pop Culture and the Framing of News Accounts-Allan Rachlin Projections of Power: Framing News, Public Opinion, and U.S. Foreign Policy- Robert Entman When the Press Fails: Political Power and the News Media from Iraq to Katrina-W. Lance Bennett et al Covering Islam-Edward Said Islamic Peril: Media and Global Violence-Karim H. Karim No Questions Asked: News Coverage since 9/11-Lara Finnegan

*This list is subject to change.


While 281 has no formal prerequisite, this is an intermediate writing course, and instructors expect entering students to know how to formulate claims, integrate evidence, demonstrate awareness of audience, and structure coherent sentences, paragraphs and essays. Thus we strongly encourage students to complete an introductory (100 level) writing course before enrolling in English 281.

281 D INTERMED EXPOS WRIT (Intermediat Expository Writing) Rose TTh 9:30-11:20 13083

This class will focus on developing writing skills, critical analysis, and active reading skills. The focus of the course will be on literary representations of the natural world in american literature. Readings will include eco-critical, historical and literary texts dealing with the environment and american culture.


While 281 has no formal prerequisite, this is an intermediate writing course, and instructors expect entering students to know how to formulate claims, integrate evidence, demonstrate awareness of audience, and structure coherent sentences, paragraphs and essays. Thus we strongly encourage students to complete an introductory (100 level) writing course before enrolling in English 281.

283 A BEGIN VERSE WRITING (Beginning Verse Writing) Kimbrell TTh 9:30-10:50 13084

Catalog Description: Intensive study of the ways and means of making a poem.

283 B BEGIN VERSE WRITING (Beginning Verse Writing) Barrell MW 2:30-3:50 13085

Catalog Description: Intensive study of the ways and means of making a poem.

284 A BEG SHORT STRY WRIT (Beginning Short Story Writing) Corbo MW 2:30-3:50 13087

Catalog Description: Introduction to the theory and practice of writing the short story.

284 B BEG SHORT STRY WRIT (Beginning Short Story Writing) Mohar TTh 9:30-10:50 13088

Catalog Description: Introduction to the theory and practice of writing the short story.

300 A READING MAJOR TEXTS (“Reading Major Texts: Thoreau and Silko.”) Griesbach TTh 8:30-10:20 13090

This course is an intensive examination of two major works by American writers, Henry David Thoreau’s Walden and Leslie Marmon Silko’s Almanac of the Dead. Rather than breadth or coverage, emphasis will be on depth of reading and sustained engagement with a work of literature. These are two long, complex books and our efforts will be to read them carefully, critically, and with multiple perspectives. In examining the ideas raised in the works, we will look both at the relationship of those ideas to their historical context as well as how the authors’ linguistic and narrative craftsmanship encourages their readers to engage those ideas in particular ways. Meanwhile, we’ll learn what these writers have to say about American culture and experience. Our ongoing conversation, furthermore, will address what makes a “major text” in a given literary canon, interrogating the assumptions that go behind a designation like this.

302 A CRITICAL PRACTICE (Electronic Writing and the Future of the Book) Foster MW 2:30-4:20 13091

This course will focus on the opportunity provided by the emergence of new media to rethink the institutional histories of literature, print culture, and the book as cultural form. The argument we will be assessing claims that our current transitional moment in the development of computer-mediated communication and new media forms also generates a renewed self-consciousness about the materiality of the book as a medium and the particularity of the cultural and cognitive values it embodies, last seen during the transition from medieval manuscript culture to print technology and the standardization of print in the 18th century. This self-consciousness, it is argued, opens print up to new experiments and makes it possible to revalue different aspects of literary history. The course will therefore be organized around basic questions about the object of literary or more generally English studies, defined in relation to the method of intermediation or the situating of print culture within a comparative media framework. We will use N. Katherine Hayles’s book Electronic Literature, which includes a CD-ROM with an extensive selection of electronic texts in a variety of genres, along with some selections from The Future of the Book (ed. Geoffrey Nunberg). In addition to the texts listed below, we will likely read some critical essays, short stories, and poems, available online or on reserve. If time permits, we will also discuss popular practices of electronic writing, especially blogging, and some examples of visual culture, such as Warren Ellis and Darick Robertson’s Transmetropolitan graphic novels, films such as Strange Days, Robot Stories, or The Matrix, or television (Battlestar Galactica). Assignments will probably include three papers and an oral presentation

Text listed below and/or:
Either Vernor Vinge, Rainbow’s End or Cory Doctorow, Little Brother or
Bruce Sterling, Distraction


302 B CRITICAL PRACTICE (Postcolonial Theory and Black British Fiction: an introduction) Taranath MW 8:30-10:20 13092

The period after WWII witnessed a wave of immigrants who came to Britain from formerly colonized countries, particularly from the Caribbean, India, Pakistan, China, Nigeria, Kenya, Zimbabwe, and Ghana. Since the early 1950s, many of these immigrants have dealt with issues of race and racism, a work force in flux, shifting gender and sexual roles, right-wing policies, anti-immigrant sentiments, the pull and contradictions of homeland cultures and customs, etc. These negotiations are articulated through a strong genre in British fiction known as Black British writing. Such works of fiction have helped to create a new British experience, as well as innovative theories of understanding culture itself. This reading-intensive course will focus on the above issues through an examination of literature and film thru the lens of postcolonial studies. We will begin the course by learning about the complexities of various colonial discourses and postcolonial theories, and use our insights to read fiction with attention to cultural and historical nuance.


302 C CRITICAL PRACTICE (CRITICAL PRACTICE) Webster TTh 7:00-8:50p 19806

(Evening Degree Program)

Critical Practice, or, What Do We Do When We Do English?

To the world outside, English Studies are about reading and writing—and that’s just about that. But over the past few decades the field itself has become intensely self-conscious of what those two activities actually are. “Reading” and “writing,” we’ve decided, are complex processes, and depending on how you understand them, you will be doing very different things. One kind of reading, for example, has for some critics come to look like a kind of cultural cheerleading; another takes an angle that makes it deeply distrustful of anything—including successful authorship—that looks like the promotion of power or privilege.

In that context, this course will ask you to think carefully about what English Studies people actually do when they do English, particularly as readers. We’ll begin with half a dozen essays that make claims about what work in English actually is or should be, and we’ll go on to read the whole of a short book that seems to argue that you needn’t actually read much at all (but doesn’t actually). Finally, we’ll also read/watch some of the texts that that book looks at as part of its argument—some short, like Montaigne’s essay “On Reading,” others more substantial, like Shakespeare’s Hamlet. I’ll also be asking you to “read” a couple films.

Throughout I will be asking you to think carefully about the reading and writing you do, and how and why you might choose to do either of them differently. You’ll write, too, about your own habits, and in the end I’ll ask you to formulate for the future your own reading/writing plan. What are you doing when you do English, and how and why might you want to modify either?

304 A HIST CRITICISM II (History of Literary Criticism and Theory) Masuga MW 1:30-3:20 19487

This class will provide an introduction to some of the major currents in contemporary literary theory. We will begin with a background in humanism, hermeneutics and phenomenology and subsequently investigate the development of ideas in the areas that are generally perceived as the core of modern literary theory: Formalism, New Criticism, Structuralism, Marxism, Psychoanalysis, Post-Structuralism. By the end of the quarter, we will also move into more contemporary areas including New Historicism, Cultural Studies, Feminist Literary Criticism, Gender Studies, Post-Colonial Studies and Multiculturalism.

316 A POSTCLNIAL LIT & CLTR (“Postcoloniality and the Presentness of the Past”) Feldman TTh 8:30-10:20 13094

What is postcolonialism, and how might a critical understanding of the present be gained by asking such a question? This course takes as its starting point literary critic Robert Young’s influential claim: “The postcolonial is concerned with colonial history only to the extent that that history has determined the configurations and power structures of the present, to the extent that much of the world still lives in the violent disruptions of its wake, and to the extent that anti-colonial liberation movements remain the source and inspiration of its politics.”
This reading-intensive course will introduce students to the field of postcolonial studies. Our goal is not only to fill in empirical gaps about a seemingly distant region of the world—in our case, the Middle East and North Africa—though students will certainly gain knowledge of this region and its relation to other places. Nor will we attempt to survey the entire field of postcolonial studies, though students will learn many of its key concepts. At its core, our task, following Young, is to consider the relationship between knowledge and power, the continued contestations over the meaning and effects of colonization, its legacies, its after-images, and the creative forms of expression animating various dreams of freedom.
As a way to ask these questions, we will examine the cultural production of a group of post-World War II writers grappling with Euro-American interest in the Middle East and North Africa. Taking as a historical touchstone the rise of the non-aligned movement after 1955, key literary works produced about Algeria, Egypt, Sudan, Palestine, and Lebanon will provide the ground for our inquiry. In turning to the literary, we will open up debates about language, form, representation, translation, and narrative. We will likewise investigate the meaning and utility of concepts of race, nation, religion, gender, sexuality, and class that legitimate colonial rule, as well as the recasting of such concepts in struggles against colonialism. Literary texts may include: Naguib Mahfouz, Midaq Alley; Tayeb Salih, Seasons of Migration to the North; Etel Adnan, Sitt Marie Rose; Nawal El Saadawi, Woman at Point Zero; Suheir Hammad, ZaatarDiva; Rabih Alameddine, Koolaids: The Art of War; Assia Djebar, Fantasia: An Algerian Cavalcade. Works of history, theory and criticism may include selections from Karl Marx, Antonio Gramsci, Frantz Fanon, Michel Foucault, Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak, Robert Young, Ann Laura Stoler, Anne McClintock, Edward Said, Ella Shohat, Trinh T. Minh-Ha, David Scott, Saba Mahmood, and Timothy Mitchell.

320 A ENGL LIT: MID AGES (English Literature: The Middle Ages) Coldewey MW 12:30-2:20 13095

Literary culture of Middle Ages in England, as seen in selected works from earlier and later periods, ages of Beowulf and of Geoffrey Chaucer. Read in translation, except for a few later works, which are read in Middle English.

323 A SHAKESPEARE TO 1603 (SHAKESPEARE TO 1603) Streitberger MW 1:30-3:20 13096

Shakespeare's career as dramatist before 1603 (including Hamlet). Study of history plays, comedies, and tragedies.

327 A REST/18TH C LIT (English Literature: Restoration & Early 18th C) Lockwood MW 10:30-12:20 13099

The writers and literature of England from 1660 to 1750. We will be reading plays, prose, and poetry, chosen to illustrate the variety as well as the creative force of the written word in this period, bringing to life (for example) the urban horrors of Defoe’s Journal of the Plague Year, the aristocratic dreamworld of Pope’s Rape of the Lock, the cheerful crooks and whores of The Beggar’s Opera, or the big people and little people of Gulliver’s Travels. Major authors covered include Dryden, Congreve, Defoe, Swift, Pope, Gay, and Fielding, with emphasis on careful reading for understanding and enjoyment of this literature in its social and cultural context. Two papers with revision, weekly one-page reading responses, mid-term, final. Workload toward the high end of the scale

330 A ROMANTIC AGE (English Literature: The Romantic Age) Masuga TTh 4:30-6:20p 19807

(Evening Degree Program)

DESCRIPTION: The course will offer a broad overview of the political, intellectual and literary history of the Romantic period (1789-1850), focusing on the works of William Blake, Samuel Taylor Coleridge, William Wordsworth, John Keats, Percy Bysshe Shelley, Mary Shelley, Lord Byron and Romantic Women Poets (Anna Laetitia Barbauld, Charlotte Smith and Felicia Dorothea Hemans). We will begin with an investigation of the impact of the French Revolution on the Romantics and of radical developments during this period in religion (the opposition to Christianity), philosophy (the revolt against empiricism), aesthetics (the prevailing interest in the sublime and the emergence of the aesthetics of the picturesque), art (the change from the tradition of portrait paintings or paintings on historical subjects to landscape paintings in which the main subject is represented by nature as the human figure diminishes in size and significance), and gardening (the change from the formal garden to a landscape that more nearly resembles the uncultivated look of the wilderness, according to standards set forth by picturesque aesthetics). After three weeks on these introductory topics, we will turn to an in-depth study of individual writers, focusing on their different representations of transcendence, the relationship with nature, transgression, the Promethean hero, female companionship, domesticity and the maternal bond.

William Blake, Songs of Innocence and of Experience (Oxford University Press,
Mary Shelley, Frankenstein (Bedford Books of St. Martin Press, 1992).

XEROX: Course packages are available from the Ave Copy Center (4141 University Way NE., Suite 103). Tel.: (206) 633-1837).

337 B MODERN NOVEL (The Modern Novel) Popov TTh 12:30-2:20 13103

This class is a study of modern-fiction landmarks, with special emphasis on artistic method and the transformation of the novel as a genre. Topics include: modernity and the quest for meaning; the crisis of public and private values; authority and point of view; irony and ambiguity; modes of consciousness; temporal and spatial structures; self-reflexive language and stylistic experiment. Texts and Editions (in alphabetical order): Conrad, The Secret Agent (Oxford World’s Classics); Dostoevsky, Notes from the Underground (Vintage); Flaubert, Madame Bovary (Norton Critical Edition); Proust, Swan’s Way (Modern Library); Joyce, A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man (Signet); Woolf, Mrs. Dalloway (Harvest). You can use other editions but you’ll have to you read the critical materials (essays, letters, prefaces, introductions, etc.) printed in the editions listed above (copies of them will be placed on reserve). The course has a heavy load: we’ll read six medium-length/short novels all of which require heightened attention to detail and much reflection. Requirements and Grading: final = 40% of your grade; mid-term = 30%; short assignments (one on each novel), attendance and participation contribute the remaining 30%. All students should have read Madame Bovary and at least one of the other novels on the list before the first meeting.

339 A CONTEMP ENG LIT (Decline and Fall: British Fiction and the End of the Century.) Wayland TTh 11:30-1:20 13105

A course on postwar and postmodern British novels, focusing on the question of identities—individual and national—in the era after empire. We'll explore re-imaginings of the novel after modernism and the social worlds with which they are concerned.

Texts will include Evelyn Waugh, Decline and Fall; George Orwell, 1984; Malcolm Lowry, Under the Volcano; Salman Rushdie, The Satanic Verses; Zadie Smith, White Teeth; Marianne Wiggins, John Dollar; P. D. James, Children of Men.

342 B CONTEMPORARY NOVEL (Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close: Contemporary Novels of Immersion) George MW 4:30-6:20p 19808

(Evening Degree Program)

Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close: Contemporary Novels of Immersion

As the terrestrial world is warming up, the literary one is cooling down. A century ago, books engaged the heart as well as the mind, and when we read, emotion seized us, took us over, broke us down. . . . this deep engagement is now rare. Passion is largely absent from our books: an icy chill has crept across the writer’s landscape.

Roxanna Robinson, Literary Critic “The Big Chill” The New York Times Book Review

“We’re all one beat away from becoming elevator music.”
Don DeLillo, Novelist

The title of this course alludes to New York writer Jonathan Foer’s 2005 novel about the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001. This novel and others of our time represent one trend in fiction toward full body “immersion”—fiction meant not just to engage the mind but seize the senses, especially the soul.

This means that the novels we read in this course will not be sentimentally soothing—no elevator music for us--but neither will they be merely sensational, meant merely to shock without thought. Some will be formally innovative—using contemporary techniques of formatting to deepen your reading engagement beyond merely aesthetic to historic and political realms. All will engage the heart—no icy chill will fill this classroom, as we attempt to steer clear of
Don DeLillo’s fatalistic prediction for the contemporary novel.

We will average a novel every 1.5 to 2 weeks, and the following we will definitely read: Nicole Krauss, The History of Love; Ali Smith, Hotel World; Cormac McCarthy, No Country for Old Men. Other possibilities include: Toni Morrison, Beloved; Marjane Satrapi, Persepolis; Jonathan Foer, either Everything is Illuminated or Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close; Ann Pancake, Strange as this Weather Has Been; Monique Truong, The Book of Salt; Jeffrey Eugenides, The Virgin Suicides; Russell Banks, The Sweet Hereafter; Isabelle Allende, The House of Spirits; Zadie Smith, White Teeth or On Beauty. (There may be others, as these later choices will be based in part on what is readily available from publishers in paperback). We may view one or two film adaptations of particular novels and read popular and scholarly reviews of those films to discover more about movies and audience immersion.

Course work includes active, thoughtful, vocal, in-person participation; short writing assignments; and a final examination.

350 A TRAD AM FICTION (American Renaissance) Liu TTh 11:30-1:20 13109

It is an accepted fact today that our nation first achieved a distinct cultural voice in the mid-19th century, a period dubbed the “American Renaissance.” Yet while Emerson, Hawthorne, Poe, Whitman, and Melville are now revered as the bedrocks of our national literature, these men achieved their iconic status due to the concerted efforts of Cold War literary critics, who desired to identify a period in the past that might restore a sense of American dignity and drive in a new age of atomic nihilism. This course is designed to critically examine how the idea of an American Renaissance was a response and salve to the fears and uneasiness of a post-WWII United States. The roots we revere, in other words, say as much about our present as it does the past.
As history always dialogues with the current, we will examine how and why the themes of slavery and the seductions of idealism were resonant in both the 1850s and 1950s, and explore how they continue to haunt our contemporary moment. We will also explore who was included in the American Renaissance and why, as a way of interrogating how our search for tradition is a sensitive barometer of our trepidations and ambitions for the nation. The course’s tracing of American literature’s long-standing contemplation of certain themes is key to understanding the forces that bond our nation, and at what costs. Some of the texts we will be covering this quarter are: Uncle Tom’s Cabin, The Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, Billy Budd, The Blithedale Romance, and The Manchurian Candidate.


351 A COLONIAL AMER LIT (American Literature: The Colonial Period) Griffith M-Th 9:30- 13110

We'll read and discuss an assortment of novels, memoirs, sermons, journals, treatises and other writings by American authors of the Colonial and Early National Periods. Students will be expected to attend class regularly, keep up with reading assignments, and take part in open discussion. Written work will consist entirely of between five and ten brief in-class essays done in response to study questions handed out in advance.


352 A EARLY AMER LIT (American Literature: The Early Nation) Abrams MW 7:00-8:50p 19810

(Evening Degree Program)

An introduction to American literature and culture during the decades leading up to the Civil War. This is a period that struggled with numerous issues of race, slavery, gender, and class, strove to develop a national mythology and identity against the backdrop of shifting national boundaries, increasing immigration, worldwide travel, empire and trade, and a heterogeneous population, tried to salvage religious faith in the wake of modern science and the Enlightenment, and took democracy seriously enough to trace through its implications even to the point where, as in the case of Walt Whitman’s Leaves of Grass, such implications start to become startling and strange. The period is much too complex to be organized into a dominant, easily defined thesis or polemic, and in fact the aesthetic strategy of choice for many of the writers whom we’ll be exploring is the ambiguous interchange of perspectives and voices without closure or synthesis. The “question,” as Melville at one point writes of his own literary method, tends to remain “more final than any answer,” and nature itself, as Thoreau emphasizes, becomes a site where perspectives so alter and shift and we can never get any closer than “nearer and nearer to here.” The pre-Civil War American idiom, I should caution, is dense, complicated, and often difficult to read—although enormously rewarding and eloquent--and most of the issues broached during this period remain as current as cell phones and iPods.


353 B AMER LIT LATER 19C (Rereading the Rockets’ Red Glare: The Function of American Literature in the Later 19th Century) Burt MW 1:30-3:20 19571

This class will consider “American literature” in the middle and latter half of the 19th century, not as a stable and agreed upon category, but as a concept whose cultural function shifted in relation to the transforming social, economic, and political faces of the United States across this period. In part, we will consider specific literatures, and the way they were positioned in relation to the nation-state, as dynamically engaged in the production, or contestation, of models of national identity. At the same time, we will be particularly attentive to the way literary production engaged, enabled, or worked to destabilize the logics of American exceptionalism, “manifest” logics that facilitated U.S. colonial and imperial expansion. Consequently, the class will be historically “book-ended” by two American imperial wars: the Mexican-American War (1846-1848), and the Spanish-American War of 1898, which catalyzed the Philippine-American War. While we consider such “cultures of U.S. imperialism,” we will also focus on the post-Civil War function of (and debates around) the “democratizing” work of “realist” fiction, disseminated via periodicals like the Atlantic Monthly, and the turn at century’s end toward a “romantic revival,” a mode of writing closely linked to America’s expansion into the Pacific.

Writers may include, but are not limited to: John Rollin Ridge, Rebecca Harding Davis, Henry David Thoreau, William Dean Howells, Zitkala-Sa, Frederick Douglas, Sarah Winnemuca, Charles Chesnutt, Mark Twain, Jack London.

Secondary sources may include, but are not limited to: Amy Kaplan, Gerald Vizenor, Nancy Glazener, Shelley Streeby, Benedict Anderson, Philip Deloria, Terry Eagleton, Shari Hundorf, Edward Said.

This class will be organized as a seminar. As such, we should be prepared for a committed, compassionate and respectful engagement with our readings and each other. Assignments will likely include several short essays, a group project, and a final project.

Much of the reading will be short stories or selections from novels, which will be available, along with our secondary sources, in a course-pack. Any novels selected will be available at the University Bookstore.

354 A EARLY MOD AM LIT (American Literature: The Early Modern Period) Griffith MWTh 10:30-, T 10:30- 13112

We'll read and discuss an assortment of novels and short stories by American authors writing in the first half of the twentieth cdntury. Students will be expected to attend class regularly, keep up with reading assignments, and take part in open discussion. Written work will consist of a number of brief in-class essays, done in response to study questions handed out in advance.


361 A AM POL CLTR AFT 1865 (“American Exits: Abolition and Exodus") Feldman TTh 12:30-2:20 13113

While the national narrative of the United States as a “nation of immigrants” has routinely turned to the biblical figure of the “Promised Land” to explain its exceptional qualities, it has persistently run aground when faced with the centrality of racial slavery to its history. The figure of “Exodus,” with its allusions to enslavement and escape, freedom and fugitivity, diaspora and nation formation, has framed some of the nation’s most powerful counter-narratives. This reading-intensive undergraduate course will turn to recent scholarship in African American studies to help us understand the Exodus figure as central to post-1865 black culture. In particular, we will consider the various ways Exodus has animated abolitionist thought from the wake of racial slavery in the 1860s to the wake of the civil rights movement in the 1970s. Such thought, we will see, registers shifting understandings of race, nation, and empire, geography and history, tradition and modernity. Our path will follow Exodus where it takes us, to Haiti and Jamaica and Cuba, to Monrovia, Addis Ababa, and Cairo, to the plantations, prisons, and cities of the United States, to sites and spaces unmoored from the nation-state’s powerful gravity.
Our task, then, is three-fold: to develop critical tools to read literary, visual, musical, theoretical, and social texts at the intersection of narrative form and historical analysis; to survey the cultural history and some of the major texts of Pan-Africanism, black nationalism, and black internationalism from Reconstruction through the end of the civil rights movement; and to develop a working knowledge of some key texts in contemporary literary and cultural theory that help us think through the bounds and binds of American political culture. Writers may include: Amiri Baraka, Edward Wilmot Blyden, Octavia Butler, Frederick Douglass, David Graham Du Bois, Shirley Graham Du Bois, WEB Du Bois, Brent Hayes Edwards, Marcus Garvey, Paul Gilroy, Eddie Glaude, Stuart Hall, Pauline Hopkins, Zora Neal Hurston, CLR James, Martin Luther King, Jr., Malcolm X, Bob Marley, Toni Morrison, Sun Ra, Ishmael Reed, Cedric Robinson, David Scott, Michelle Stephens, Scott Trafton, and Cynthia Young.

363 A LIT & OTHER ARTS ("Literature in Place") Barlow TTh 12:30-2:20 13114

From debates over connections made between national identity and the "exploration" of geographical space to meditations on the seeming disappearance of "solid ground" in a postmodern world of capital and information flows, the concept of place has been, and continues to be, important to the study of American (U.S.) literature and culture. This course will begin from growing critical interest in place-based literary studies to ask how we (as readers and scholars) conceive of "place" and what that means for reading literature, other cultural documents, and our own everyday experiences. The following authors likely will appear in our schedule: Anzia Yezierska, Edith Wharton, Henry David Thoreau, Marilynne Robinson, Rick Bass, and Don DeLillo. Study of photography, art works, and film will help us to respond to the readings. Interdisciplinary theory from literature and environment studies, anthropology, and cultural geography will provide frameworks for various ways of thinking about space and place. Expect to engage in lively class discussions; to read a variety of texts and documents published across a large time span (from the 1850s to the present) in various contexts and disciplines; and to complete critical response papers, group facilitations, reading quizzes, and a final project.

363 B LIT & OTHER ARTS (Literature and the Other Arts and Disciplines) Gray MWF 10:30-11:20 19588

This course examines a set of central themes that emerge from Sigmund Freud’s theories of the dream, the nature of literary creativity, the operation of the human psyche, and the substance of human culture. We will take as our starting point the hypothesis that Freud conceives the psyche as a kind of writing machine, an “author” that produces fictional narratives that share many properties with the prose fiction generated by creative writers. For this reason, our focus throughout the quarter will be restricted to prose narratives. The course will concentrate on literature produced in the wake of Freud’s theories, that is, on texts that consciously or unconsciously develop Freudian ideas. The class is structured around a set of themes that will be developed on the basis of paired readings: in each case we will examine a text or excerpt from Freud’s psychological works in conjunction with the reading of a literary text that exemplifies the issue or issues highlighted in Freud’s theory. Literary works treated include writings by Franz Kafka, Thomas Mann, Arthur Schnitzler, Robert Musil, Ingeborg Bachmann, and others

363 BA LIT & OTHER ARTS (Literature and the Other Arts and Disciplines) Th 10:30-11:20 19590

Catalog Description: Relationships between literature and other arts, such as painting, photography, architecture, and music, or between literature and other disciplines, such as science.

363 BB LIT & OTHER ARTS (Literature and the Other Arts and Disciplines) Th 10:30-11:20 19591

Catalog Description: Relationships between literature and other arts, such as painting, photography, architecture, and music, or between literature and other disciplines, such as science.

363 BC LIT & OTHER ARTS (Literature and the Other Arts and Disciplines) Th 10:30-11:20 19592

Catalog Description: Relationships between literature and other arts, such as painting, photography, architecture, and music, or between literature and other disciplines, such as science.

363 BD LIT & OTHER ARTS (Literature and the Other Arts and Disciplines) Th 10:30-11:20 19593

Catalog Description: Relationships between literature and other arts, such as painting, photography, architecture, and music, or between literature and other disciplines, such as science.

370 A ENGL LANG STUDY (English Language Study) Moore TTh 9:30-11:20 13116

This course introduces the systematic study of present-day English sounds, words, sentences, and the contexts of language production. Speakers of a language command many complex levels of structure – many of which they are not even aware. We will look at these structural building blocks of language and become acquainted with the fundamentals of linguistic communication. How do people make meaningful noises? How are words put together? How do words combine to create meaning? How does language function in its social context? This course addresses these questions with particular reference to English. Course work will consist of daily homework, quizzes, one short paper, a midterm and a final.

381 A ADV EXPOSITORY WRIT (Advanced Expository Writing) Liu TTh 2:30-4:20 13117

Marco Polo and Mark Twain are just a couple examples of travel writers who, through their rendition of faraway locations in persuasive prose, radically altered how readers pictured the world. Through descriptions of people encountered and landscapes traversed, travel writers familiarize, exoticize, or destabilize the unknown in order to transform places into cultural significant landmarks in the imagination of their armchair readers. As a genre, travel writing is an excellent illustration of the immediate power of prose and lends itself well to the study of the effective use of words. In this class, we will analyze some signature pieces of this genre as a way to develop our own prose styles. Classwork will consist of discussion of various essays and peer critiques of student writing. Assigned texts: The Best American Travel Writing 2007 ed. Susan Orlean (required) and The Travel Writer’s Handbook by Louise Purwin Zobel (optional)


381 B ADV EXPOSITORY WRIT (The Rhetoric of American Democracy) Burt MW 8:30-10:20 13118

This class will be taught, self-consciously, simultaneous to and in conversation with the lead up to the 2008 presidential election. As such, we will critically engage the problems, but also the possibilities, of democracy, particularly as practiced in the United States. Specifically, we will be interested in the notion that a healthy democracy is predicated on, as the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution underscores, freedom of speech and freedom of the press. These ideals suggest that a thriving democracy necessarily relies on diverse critical debate and discussion, an informed populace, and a press ostensibly “free.” Yet, to what degree, when media networks are increasingly conglomerated and corporatized, do people have the ability to access and think critically through a diverse body of information? How might we imagine a truly informed populace in the first decades of the new millennium? To help us consider these questions we will be engaging a broad set of readings that will develop in dialogue with theories regarding the “public sphere,” as developed by Jurgen Habermas, as well as critiques of the mass-media, associated with the Frankfurt School and more contemporary “culture jammers.” Part of this inquiry will consider the history of mass-media communications, ultimately leading to a consideration of the internet and the emergence of “blog” culture. This final model for information dissemination gestures at technologies that may disrupt the potentially homogenizing work of the “culture industry.”

As this is an advanced composition class, we will consider our own writing practices in relation to our discussion of the “public sphere,” and emphasize the writing process as practicing a democratic dialectic.

Readings may include, but not be limited to, work from Horkheimer and Adorno, Habermas, Guy Debord, Kalle Lasn, Douglas Rushkoff, Stephen Duncombe. Most readings will be available in a course reader. There may be an additional text or two at the University Bookstore.

This class will be organized as a seminar. As such, we should be prepared for a committed, compassionate and respectful engagement with our readings and each other. Assignments will creatively emphasize the writing process. There will be both a group project and final projects.

383 A CRAFT OF VERSE (was Intermediate Verse Writing) Christian TTh 9:30-10:50 13119

Catalog Description: Intensive study of various aspects of the craft verse. Readings in contemporary verse and writing using emulation and imitation.


ENGL 283 & ENGL 284

384 A CRAFT OF PROSE (was Intermediate Short Story Writing) Brower TTh 1:30-2:50 13121

A course in prose forms, such as collage, autobiography, parable, reportage, found art. Students will read several examples of each form, then attempt their own versions.


ENGL 283 & ENGL 284


Catalog Description: Medieval romance in its cultural and historical setting, with concentration on the evolution of Arthurian romance.

440 A SPEC STUDIES IN LIT (Planes, Trains, and Automobiles: Modern Bodies on the Move) Wayland TTh 1:30-3:20 13123

This course considers three revolutions in transportation, each of which played a crucial role in redefining time and space in the modern world. We'll begin the course by examining how the possibilities of mechanized movement shape social and individual experience, then examine literary texts preoccupied with these transformations. Central to the course, then, is the intersection of technology, literature, and history, and a significant part of the course will be spent on critical readings on these issues. Topics will include shifts in the perception of time and distance, the relationship between the urban metropolis and the countryside, the structure of cities, and the relationship between human bodies and machines.

Texts will include: Ernest Hemingway, The Sun Also Rises; Rex Warner, The Aerodrome; William Faulkner, Pylon; Patricia Highsmith, Strangers on a Train; J. G. Ballard, Crash. We will also study several films, whole or in part, from Alfred Hitchcock's North by Northwest to Quentin Tarantino's Death Proof.

471 A COMPOSITION PROCESS (The Composition Process) Rai MW 3:30-5:20 13125

This course provides an overview of the key theories and methods that have informed writing instruction, assessment, and curricular design since the emergence of the process movement in the late-1960s. The “process” approach shifted focus from the formal features of a finished writing product to the process writers undergo to produce effective writing. The movement opened space, furthermore, for conversations about student voice, self-expression, political resistance, and exclusion.

We will explore and challenge composition theories that have evolved out of and in response to the process movement. The breadth of such work, among other things, pays greater attention to the challenges of teaching within “diverse” classrooms, to the social dimension of writing in various genres and contexts; and to the possibilities of service learning and community-based writing initiatives.

Please note that this is a service learning course, planned in collaboration with the UW Carlson Center and Pipeline project, and you will be expected to work two hours each week in a local classroom. This work will culminate in a curricular design project. (There will be an alternative research option available for students who are unable to participate in the service learning component.)

In practical terms, students will be expected to write weekly position papers in response to course readings, complete a curricular design project, facilitate a teaching forum discussion, and develop a teaching philosophy statement. We will further ground our theoretical work by examining the Washington state mandates for student learning and assessment in secondary education, including the Washington Assessment of Student Learning (WASL) and the Essential Academic Learning Requirements (EALRs).

This course encourages lively dialogue about the teaching of writing with the hope of collectively clarifying and enriching our teaching practices (or aspiring practices) in relation to the history of composition theory and practice, within the constraints of our various institutions, within the political climate of classrooms, schools and communities, and with respect to our personal convictions about what it means to teach writing to real students in a specific time and place.


474 A SPEC TPCS ENG-TCHRS (Special Topics in English for Teachers) Peck MW 2:30-4:20 13126
483 A ADV VERSE WORKSHOP (Advanced Verse Workshop) Triplett W 3:30-6:10p 13128

Catalog Description: Intensive verse workshop. Emphasis on the production and discussion of student poetry.


ENGL 383, 384

484 A ADV PROSE WORKSHOP (Advanced Prose Workshop) Bosworth T 4:30-7:20p 13130

Catalog Description: Intensive prose workshop. Emphasis on the production and discussion of student fiction and/or creative nonfiction.


ENGL 383, 384

494 A HONORS SEMINAR (Seminar in Shakespeare: History, Tragedy, and the Future of Illusion) Blau MW 12:30-2:20 13134

“What, art thou mad? art thou mad? is not the truth the truth?” That comic outburst of Falstaff, covering up with indignation the lying truth by which he lives, might in a frivolous moment also be applied to Shakespeare, who lives on through scholarship and performance in often conflicted ways, all of them subject to the vicissitudes of history. As with the inspired casting of a Shakespearean role, every critical strategy is likely to be reductive, even as it guarantees certain kinds of interpretation or opens up by incurring risk perhaps forgotten possibilities.. It may be precisely what’s left out that permits other prospects to come in. What encumbers any criticism is not so much its exclusionary tendencies, but the failure to realize—even through the closest reading—that it may be extruding something, since all readings are at best provisional, temporal, more often than not historical compensation.

As a social form, the drama is not an autonomous event, preserved from the abrasions of history and the liabilities of performance by the labors of scholarship in a certified text. Whatever makes the play also makes history, though it is a distressing habit of history that, down to the last syllable of recorded time, much of it is lost, if not somehow consigned to the future of illusion. Nevertheless, in criticism today an attentiveness to history has been on the scene, more or less dominantly so, in the form of a “new historicism” or “cultural materialism” or, through the auspices of “deconstruction,” the deployment of psychoanalysis, feminism, neo-Marxism, postcolonialism, racial and gender studies, and queer theory, as virtual instruments of revisionist history. This is by way of preface to the quite specific issue that will impel our study in this seminar, even as it raises the question of attitudes to history or, given the history (or histories) privileged in the curriculum today, alternative ideas of history.

Since it’s unlikely that many of us are historians, we shall come at that as best we can through the problematic of the Shakespearean text—in this case, particularly, the abiding crux of tragic drama, with its burden of illusion and awesome mortifications. Since deconstruction and the advent of the new historicism, the status of tragedy—from Oedipus to Hamlet—has been, if not entirely discredited, certainly looked at askance, not only as an exalted form in the literary canon, but as a mystification of history that, in representing atrocity and appalling misuses of power, makes them seem unalterable, deterring social change. It is to this critique that the subtitle of the seminar refers, not the history plays and the tragedies, but the question(ing) of history in the tragedies, with attention to the ways in which, from Titus Andronicus to Macbeth or King Lear to Coriolanus, the distressing powers of tragic vision may take the measure of any critique.


494 B HONORS SEMINAR ("The Uses and Abuses of History in 20th Century British Literature:) Kaplan TTh 11:30-1:20 13135

Why were so many 20th century novelists fascinated with history? (Why are so manhy 21st century students so bored with it?) Has the very concept of "history" changed over the course of the last century? Such questions will underlie our work in this seminar. We will read a number of novels in which various concepts of history help to shape the course of fictional events. These are not conventional "historical" novels, (no swashbuckling heroes, or endlessly detailed battle scenes). Instead we will study some difficult and perplexing books, whose authors realize that the linkage between "history" and "truth" is often uncertain. Be prepared to read closely and analytically.

Texts: D.H. Lawrence, The Rainbow; Virginia Woolf, Orlando; Graham Swift, Waterland; Julian Barnes, Flaubert's Parrot; Kazuo Ishiguro, The Remains of the Day.

498 C SENIOR SEMINAR (Fear, Gratitude, Grief, Joy and Other Emotions I Have Known While Reading and Living.) Allen TTh 2:30-4:20 13138

This course focuses on readings about emotions and will move in two related directions: (1) we'll explore emotional responses to verbal and visual texts, and (2) we'll read contemporary fiction and non-fictional/theoretical texts about emotions themselves. We'll take up some provocative questions: What does it mean to "identify" with a character, really? How much of our own lives do we read into a character's life? What does "being moved" by something we read or view involve? Are emotions universal or do they vary from culture to culture? How do emotions become a commodity in work and personal environments? What kinds of situations require emotions on demand? How do we account for the bodily responses that sometimes accompany intense emotional responses? Students will choose between writing two shorter or one longer paper, and will give a class presentation. Participation in discussion is required. So are lively opinions, and an interest in this topic.

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