Fall 2008 Courses - Undergraduate

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English 1A: Composition I: See MySJSU for selection of sections.

English 1B: Composition II: See MySJSU for selection of Sections.

English 7: Critical Thinking

Nature and meaning of critical thought, Western and non-Western. Relationship between logic and language. Examination of contrasting arguments on related subjects as a means for developing skill in analysis of prose.

Prerequisite: ENGL 1A. GE: A3

MW 1030-1145 Lore
MW 1030-1145 Strachan


English 10: Great Works of Literature

Fiction, drama and poetry for non-English majors. Emphasis on critical appreciation of various literary forms. Notes: No credit in the English major. GE: C2

TR 0900-1015 Chow
MW 0900-1015 TBA
T 1800-2045 Miller

English 22: Fantasy and Science Fiction

Students will examine works of literary fantasy and science fiction to understand them as expressions of human intellect and Imagination; to comprehend their historical and cultural contexts; and to recognize their diverse cultural traditions. Both contemporary and historical works will be studied.

Notes: No credit in the English major. GE: C2

M 1800-2045 Lore
TR 1030-1145 TBA (revised 5/7/08)
MW 1030-1145 Sams

English 56A: English Literature to the Late 18 thCentury

Major literary movements, figures, and genres of British literature from the Anglo-Saxon period through the eighteenth century. Works and writers will include Beowulf, Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, Chaucer, Spenser, Marlowe, Shakespeare, Donne, Marvell, Milton, Dryden, Pope, Swift, Fielding, Jonson, and others.

TR 1330-1445 Mesher


English 56A: English Literature to the Late 18 thCentury

This course is a survey of British Literature from its earliest works through the eighteenth century. The goals of the course are to help students to gain an overview of the major literary periods, genres, authors, and works of English literature. We will discuss these texts from a variety of perspectives, including the dynamic relationship between heroes and villains throughout early English history, considering what these representations reveal about the various societies that produced them.

MW 1030-1145 Eastwood

English 56B: English Literature Late 18 th Century to Present

Major literary movements, figures and genres from the Romantic age to the present. Writers may include Austen, the Romantics, Tennyson, Browning, Arnold, Dickens, the Brontes, George Eliot, Hardy, Yeats, Joyce, Lawrence, Forster, Woolf, T.S. Eliot, Auden, Beckett.

MW 1330-1145 Wilson

English 68A: American Literature

A survey of major and significant texts, movements, and writers exemplifying the literature of the United States of America, covering the period from the Columbian contact to around the end of the Civil War. Required: Quizzes and in-class activities, presentations, midterm and final exams, and research project.

TR 1030-1145 Chow

English 68A: American Literature to 1865

This survey begins with Native American orature and includes nonfiction, poetry, and fiction from the colonial through the romantic periods. Students will sample the works of writers from Bradford and Bradstreet to Whitman and Dickinson. Written work: Reading responses, midterm, final, and critical analysis (5 pages) paper.

F 0930-1215 English

English 71: Introduction to Creative Writing

Examinations of works of poetry, creative nonfiction and short fiction as expression of human intellect and imagination, to comprehend the historic and cultural contexts, and recognize issues related to writing by men and women of diverse cultural traditions. Students will also write poetry, creative nonfiction, and a short fiction. GE: C2

MW 0900-1015 Moody
MW 1200-1315 Lindelof
MW 1330-1445 James
TR 0900-1015 TBA
TR 1330-1445 Evans
M 1800-2045 Schragg
W 1800-2045 Mcleod

English 71: Introduction to Creative Writing
In this section of English 71, you'll be introduced to poetry, nonfiction and fiction and asked to write in all three genres. We'll explore the ways that we encounter poems in daily life, figure out how to use poetic devices, and workshop poems on a weekly basis. We'll also be reading and writing creative nonfiction--and working on an extended personal essay or memoir. Learning to write a short story involves looking at all the elements of good storytelling--detailed description, movement and climax, characters and dialogue. By the time you finish this course, you'll not only have amassed a body of your own creative work, but you'll become skilled critics and will have sense for what you love to read. The goal of this class is to have fun and learn about the magic of words, language and exceptional communication. While it's a lot of work, I promise you'll learn about the creative process (including revision).

TR 1200-1315 Karim


English 71: Introduction to Creative Writing

This section will be taught online using the Web CT (Blackboard) instructional platform. The course will involve both the reading and writing of poetry, creative nonfiction, and short fiction. Students in this class will read published works--contemporary and historical--of poetry, creative nonfiction, and fiction. Students will write original works of poetry, creative non-fiction, and fiction in response to works by published authors that students will use as models. English 71 will explore the traditions of poetry, creative nonfiction, and fiction as they have evolved over the last few centuries. Students will examine these traditions in the light of understanding the historical and cultural contexts from which they have arisen.

The course will be taught using a combination of online small writing groups (organized as learning communities and led by MFA students as student-teachers) and a larger class online writing workshops. In the discussion, published works of creative writing will be closely read and analyzed. In the writing workshops, creative work by class members will be analyzed and critiqued for revision. Students are required to participate in all workshops dedicated to the discussion of class members' writing.

ONLINE Soldofsky

English 78: Introduction to Shakespeare: William Shakespeare and Popular Culture

In this course we will grapple with the question: does Shakespeare still matter in the twenty-first century? Students will study several of Shakespeare's plays in depth, and then analyze modern film adaptations of those same works. Some of the pairings we will discuss include: The Taming of the Shrew Ð 10 Things I Hate About You (Dir. Gil Junger); Othello Ð “O” (Dir. Tim Blake Nelson); Macbeth Ð Scotland PARomeo and Juliet Ð Romeo + Juliet (Dir. Baz Luhrmann) Hamlet Ð Hamlet (Dir. Almereyda, with Ethan Hawke). In each case, we will tease out the decisions made by each director in their attempt to remake or reinterpret Shakespeare's work. (Dir. Billy Morrissette)

MW 1500-1615 Eastwood

English 100W: Writing Workshop

English 100W is an integrated writing and literature course designed to provide English majors with a firm foundation for the professional study of literature. Over the course of the semester, students will engage in all phases of those reading, thinking, researching, and writing processes that produce clear and purposeful critical essays that demonstrate an understanding of and illuminate for others how literature contains and conveys its effects and meanings. Approximately one half of the semester will be spent on the study of poetry.

Prerequisite: Passing score on WST.

Notes: The English Studies Writing Workshop is required of all English majors before they achieve senior standing. GE: Z

MW 1200-1315 Brada
TR 0900-1015 Rice
TR 1330-1445 Chow
W 1630-1915 Wilson


English 100WB: Written Communication: Business

Written communications for business majors; includes minimum of 8,000 words of writing spaced throughout the semester. Prerequisites: English 1B (with a grade of C or better); completion of Core GE; satisfaction of Writing Skills Test and upper-division standing. GE: Z

MW 0730-0845 Sparks
MW 1030-1145 Sparks
MW 1200-1315 TBA
MW 1500-1615 Poindexter
TR 0900-1015 Gehl
TR 1030-1145 Gehl
TR 1200-1315 TBA
M 1800-2045 Hessler
T 1630-1915 Mujal
T 1800-2045 Hessler
W 1800-2045 Hessler
R 1800-2045 Hessler

English 101: Introduction to Literary Criticism

Do you see hidden meanings in literary texts? Billboards? Movies? Advertisements? Can you come up with 3 variant meanings for Ezra Pound's poem, "In a Station of the Metro"? There are many possible readings of all literary and visual texts. Even your own identity governs your interpretation of the material. What kind of critic are you? For this course, we will discover and apply critical models to various literary, visual and digital texts. Critical models will include foundational twentieth-century theory as well as contemporary approaches to literature (feminism, Queer theory, Marxism, post-colonialism and more). Though we will apply these critical models to texts across several historical periods and literary genres, Joseph Conrad's Heart of Darkness will be our ur-text.

Prerequisite: English 100W

TR 1200-1315 Harris

English 101: Introduction to Literary Criticism

Study and application of various historical and contemporary approaches to literature, such as formalism, structuralism, new criticism, cultural studies, new historicism, post-structuralism, Marxism, post-colonialism, feminism, etc. Application of these approaches to works of literature. Prerequisite: ENGL 100W.

MW 1330-1445 Krishnaswamy
M 1600-1845 Krishnaswamy

English 103: Modern English

The growth and structure of modern English, including its phonology, morphology, syntax and semantics. Attention to social and regional varieties, with implications for language development and literacy among native and nonnative speakers. Prerequisite: Upper division standing. Units: 3

MW 0900-1015 Baer
MW 1200-1315 Stork

English 105: Seminar in Advanced Composition

Advanced expository writing. Prerequisite: Six units of lower division composition and completion of the Written Communication II requirement (ENGL100W). May be repeated once for credit with different instructor and department chair consent. Units: 3

TR 1030-1145 Gabor (New Hire!)

English 106: Editing for Writers

Copy editing, substantive editing and reorganization of technical documents. Review of grammar and punctuation to ensure technical mastery and ability to justify editing decisions. Graphics editing, access aids and professional skills of an editor. Prerequisite: ENGL 1A and ENGL 1B. Units: 3

MW 1500-1615 Baer

English 109: Writing and the Young Writer

Emphasis on workshop approach to improve creative and expository writing skills and to transfer knowledge grained as a writer into practice as a prospective teacher of writing. Units: 3

M 1630-1915 TBA

English 112A: Children's Literature

Study of literature for elementary and intermediate grades, representing a variety of cultures. Evaluation and selection of texts. Prerequisite: Upper division standing. Units: 3

MW 0900-1015 Krishnaswamy
TR 1200-1315 Rice

English 112B: Literature for Young Adults

The goal of this course is to acquaint students with as many YA books and authors as possible; we will read six novels as a class: After the First Death, Speak, Whale Talk, Witness, Prisoner of Azkaban and First Crossing (a collection of short stories). The texts for the class, Literature for Today's Young Adults and Adolescents in the Search for Meaning: Tapping the Powerful Resource of Storyintroduce YA literature from several genres and provide author resources. Book Talks and a unit plan or annotated bibliography project are two other course requirements that will further students' knowledge of the expansive range of YA Literature.

W 1630-1915 Warner

English 113: Gothic Novel and Horror Fiction

Slasher films used to be a great way to spend "date night." However, we've become so jaded about horror films (and the girl who always falls during the chase scene) that we are amused by them instead of genuinely terrified and awe-struck. These movies were inspired by horror fiction, including Stephen King's The Shining and multiple incarnations of Frankenstein and Dracula. All of these literary texts originate from the Gothic novel tradition, where psychological disintegration is quelled by sweeping landscapes. In this course, we'll establish the definition of "gothic" by reading Matthew Lewis' The Monk and Mary Shelley's Frankenstein. Moving through the nineteenth century, we'll explore monsters, landscapes and female victims as they appear in Gothic novels. In the twentieth century, we'll discover that "gothic" becomes synonymous with "horror," very similar to King's The Shining and Stanley Kubrick's film version.

TR 1500-1615 Harris

English 116: Myth in Literature

An introduction to the main stories of Classical Greek and Roman mythology and a survey of Arthurian and other Celtic legends. We will read many of the original verrsions of these myths and consider their later appearances as well. Some attention paid to non-Western mythology as well, especially as relates to Creation mythology, angelology and Eros.

F 0930-1215 Stork

English 117: Film, Literature, and Cultures

An exploration and comparison of narrative in world literature and film, the class will focus on texts that “create and define cultural identity, explore cultural interaction, and illustrate cultural preservation and cultural difference over time.” English major elective and single-subject credential requirement that also satisfies upper-divisionGE: V

T 1900-2145 Brada-Williams

English 123D: Literature for Global Understanding-Asia

Course promotes global understanding by examining the cultures and literary arts of a selected region of the world, Asia, and covers representative texts and authors from a sub-region of Asia such as East Asia, South Asia, Southeast Asia, Central Asia, or West Asia/the Middle East. GE: V

MW 1030-1145 Krishnaswamy

English 125A: European Literature: Homer to Dante

Euro-lit's classic hits, from Homer and Sappho to Dante's Inferno. An epic course of drama queens and poetic justice.

TR 1030-1145 Mesher

English 129: Introduction to Career Writing

Practice in various professional writing tasks: instructions, descriptions, reviews, interviews, articles, creative nonfiction, short stories, poetry. Publication of a newsletter. Study of models and application of techniques to achieve given stylistic effects.

TR 0900-1015 Gabor (New Hire!)

English 130: Writing Fiction

A workshop for students with experience writing fiction. Each participant will submit two new short stories for consideration by the class and a substantial revision in lieu of a final exam. Other requirements include assigned readings of published stories and thoughtful criticism of classmates' work. Course may be repeated once for credit. Prerequisite: English 71 or instructor permission.

MW 1500-1615 Taylor
TR 1030-1145 Harrison

English 131: Writing Poetry

Have you ever wanted to talk back to a poem? In this course students will write and revise original poetry, including several poems written to be in conversation with other poemsÑby postmodern and modern poets and by poets from earlier eras. Class members will critique their poems each week in a "workshop." Some of the work we will read by published poets will be used as models for students to emulate. Most of the poetry we will write we will write will be in open form; however, students will also be asked to write a few poems in traditional rhyme and in metrical forms. The theme of the course will be “Poems in Conversation with poetry.” Billy Collins writes that “this talk among poets runs continuously back and forth through history, poets from all ages speaking at once in some great parlor of synchronicity.”


The goal of the course is to help students improve the quality of their poetry by learning more about the craft of poetry writing and techniques of revision. Poetry is largely the art of making original images and metaphors, paying concentrated attention to language, down to the level of the syllable. Class members will learn how to make better metaphors, as well as learn to construct other types of figures of speech. Class members will also learn how to improve the sound of their poems. By the end of the course, students will have finished a short manuscript of poetry. Students who are not sufficiently experienced reading and writing poetry are not encouraged to enroll in this class. To enroll in the course, undergraduates must have successfully completed English 71 or receive permission of the instructor.

The class can also be taken by MA and MFA candidates for Graduate credit.

This course can be repeated twice for credit.

Units: 3

MW 1330-1445 Soldofsky

English 133: Reed Magazine

Established in the 1920s, Reed is one of the oldest student-edited literary magazines west of the Mississippi. In this course we will cover all aspects of the editorial process, from solicitation and selection of material to production and distribution. This year we will also examine the trend toward web publishing of literary journals and the establishment of online literary communities. Open to all majors.

May be repeated once for credit.

M 1900-2145 Taylor

English 135: Writing Nonfiction

Advanced writing workshop in creative nonfiction. In this class we will experiment with four subgenres of nonfiction: the personal essay, travel writing, profile, and feature article. Prerequisite: One of the following: English 71, 100W, 105, 129, or instructor consent. Repeatable once for credit

TR 1330-1445 Miller

English 139: Visiting Authors Seminar

This course features the writings of the 2008-2009 visiting authors: memoir by Caille Millner ( The Golden Road: Notes On My Gentrification), novels and poems by Ana Castillo ( The Guardian, Watercolor Women/Opaque Men), plays and films by Terrence McNally ( Kiss of the Spider Woman, Love! Valour! Compassion!), stories by Aimee Bender ( The Girl in the Flammable Skirt) and poems and memoir by Mark Doty ( Dog Years, Fire to Fire). The course also involves opportunities to meet with the Fall 2008 visiting writers and to see one of McNally's plays that will be performed on campus.

TR 1500-1615 Evans

English 144: Shakespeare I

Major plays such as Twelfth Night, Henry IV, Part I and Hamlet. Prerequisite: Upper division standing.

MW 1200-1315 Heisch

English 144. Shakespeare I: Shakespeare, Early and Late.

What do Comedy of Errors and Twelfth Night have in common? And why is one so much more beloved than the other? “Shakespeare, Early and Late” will explore examples of the great playwright's early efforts, later high points, and final complications of genre. We'll get a chance to see a great mind at work, improving on earlier effortsÑsuch as Comedy of ErrorsÑto hit a stride in masterpiecesÑlike Twelfth Night. We'll read several comedies, histories, and tragedies, giving us a chance to enjoy some of the classics we've come to love and some works we might not know as well.

TR 1330-1445 Fleck

English 147: Milton

The man, the thinker, the revolutionary, the poet. English poems, major prose, selected modern criticism. Prerequisite: Upper division standing. Units: 3

TR 1030-1145 Fleck

English 150: The Victorian Age

Study of major authors and poets from 1832 to 1900, tracing changes in philosophy, religion, society and culture represented in their works.

M 1900-2145 Wilson

English 152A: Men in Tights, Women in Breeches: Cross-Dressing in Early Modern Comedy

Until 1660, all theatrical roles were played by men. So, when Romeo and Juliet breathlessly say goodbye on the balcony, the audience accepts the performance of femininity offered by the boy under the dress. But occasionally in Shakespeare's comedies, the performance of gender becomes itself the focus, as the playwright gives us characters who, while playing the role of “women,” assume “male” identities, and try to pass (with varying degrees of conviction) as men. When women took the stage after 1660, they played male roles as well, acting in “breeches parts,” as well as the traditional female characters. This course will explore issues raised by such performances of gender on the early modern stage. We will enjoy plays by: Thomas Middleton, Thomas Dekker, Ben Jonson, Aphra Behn, plus many more!

MW 1200-1315 Eastwood

English 163: American Literature: 1865-1910

This upper-level course covers the Realist and Naturalist movements in American literature. We will focus on fiction and autobiographical writing of the period. Writers will include Mark Twain, Helen Keller, Booker T. Washington, Zitkala Sa, Henry James, Edith Wharton, Charles Chesnutt, Jack London, Kate Chopin, Stephen Crane. Written \ work: Journal essays, midterm, final, critical analysis paper (8 pages).

MW 0900-1015 English

English 167: John Steinbeck: Man, Writer, Ecologist

This course focuses on the rich creative vision of California's Nobel Prize winning writer, John SteinbeckÑa 2007 inductee into the California Hall of Fame. We will examine his life and work, his ecological and social visions, and the reasons for his enduring legacy. The approach is broadly cultural, as we consider how people, place, history and science shaped his writing. Indeed, Steinbeck spent his life writing humans living in place: “Each figure is a population and the stonesÑthe trees the muscled mountains are the worldÑbut not the world apart from manÑthe world and manÑthe one inseparable unit man and his environment. Why they should ever have been understood as being separate I do not know. Man is said to come out of his environment. He doesn't know when.” In Steinbeck's fiction and nonfiction, his films and his journalism human communities and natural communities intersect. Works to be discussed include The Long Valley, Tortilla Flat, In Dubious Battle, Of Mice and Men, The Grapes of Wrath, Cannery Row, East of Eden, The Winter of Our Discontentand selections from his nonfiction. At the end of the semester, the class will go on a field trip into “Steinbeck Country.”MW 1330-1445 Shillinglaw


English 169: Ethnicity in American Literature

Major contributors to American literature which reflect ethnic encounters with the wider American culture. Includes prose, poetry, and drama from five major American ethnic groups: African, Asian, Chicano/Hispanic, European, and Native American. English 169 fulfills Advanced GE requirements in Area S and concentrates on the study of ethnicity as represented and constructed in American literature in relation to the formation of the concept of self, the place of self in society, and issues of equality and structured inequality in the United States. It addresses issues of race, culture, history, politics, economics, etc., that arise as contexts relevant to the study of literature by and/or about Americans (including immigrants) with Indigenous, African, European, Latino, Hispanic, and Asian backgrounds. Required: Quizzes and in-class activities, multiple essays, midterm and final exams. Prerequisite: Completion of Core GE,satisfaction of Writing Skills Test, andupper-division standing.

MW 1030-1145 Brada

English 174: Literature, Self, and Society

ENGL 174 fulfills SJSU Studies (Advanced GE) requirements in Area S and concentrates on the study of American literature, from colonial times to the present, that exemplifies the development of cultural definitions of the self and of the relationship between the self and society. Students will study interrelationships of the individual and race, ethnicity, and other social communities in order to understand and appreciate issues of diversity, equality, and structured equality in the United States, its institutions, and its cultures. Required: Quizzes and in-class activities, multiple essays, midterm and final exams, and research project.

GE: S

R 1800-2045 Chow

English 190: Honors Colloquium

In 1953, a young novelist translated a short story by a Yiddish writer whose career had gone nowhere since the publication of this first novel in English a few years earlier. That story, "Gimpel the Fool," has become one of the most popular and anthologized fictions in American literature, and both the writer, Isaac Bashevis Singer, and the translator, Saul Bellow, went on separately to win the Nobel Prize for Literature. Little more than fifty years later, however, we can now hardly imagine any new story attracting much notice at all. This course will look at the genre of short fiction through the lense of Jewis literatur ein America, to explore the reasons for an effects of the decline of the short story, as well as the reasons behind the continuing achievement of American Jewish story writers. Besides works by Singer and Bellow, we will be reading the fiction of American writers such as Abraham Cahan, Anzia Yezierska, Bernard Malamud, Philip Roth, Cynthia Ozick, Nathan Englander, and many others, either as individual stories, or in the context of the original volumes in which they were collected.Prerequisite: junior or senior standing, 3.5 major and 3.0 overall GPA and admission to the department honors program.

TR 0900-1015 Mesher

English 193: Capstone Seminar in Literature and Self-Reflection

Culminating course for majors, requiring students to reflect on experiences in the major. Readings and discussions focus on literature and self-reflection. Each student submits a Portfolio of writing from at least five courses taken in major. Written work for seminar is added to Portfolio.

MW 1030-1145 Heisch
TR 1200-131 Douglass