Spring 2014 Courses - Graduate

 

Course

Seats

Day

Start 

End 

Professor

204

16

W

16:00

18:45

Krishnaswamy, Revathi

208

16

R

16:00

18:45

Karim, Persis M

230

16

T

19:00

21:45

Brada, Angela Noelle

256

16

W

19:00

21:45

Wilson, William A

240

16

M

19:00

21:45

Soldofsky, Alan D

241

16

M

16:00

18:45

Lurie Greer

242

16

R

19:00

21:45

Miller, Cathy A

255

16

T

16:00

18:45

Engell, John

 

  

English 204:  Modern Approaches to Literature, Professor Krishnaswamy

This course deals with the multidisciplinary field of Literary Critical Theory, which not only includes literary criticism but also cuts across other disciplines like psychology, philosophy, anthropology, economics, political science, history, biology and others.  Focusing mainly on theories and methodologies employed by literary scholars and critics of the 20th century, we will engage with fundamental questions about language, literature, and reading/writing:  What is literature?  How do we interpret it? How should we evaluate it?  What is its relation to culture and to society?  What are the rights and duties of artists?  Of critics and scholars?  We will try to understand major intellectual schools such as New Criticism, Structuralism, Marxism, Feminism, Deconstruction, New Historicism, Psychoanalysis, and Postcolonialism to discover how their ideas may be applied to literature.  While this course will challenge you to read a considerable amount of complex material, it should also be exhilarating because you will have an opportunity to form clearer perspectives on language/literature and to acquire tools you can use for interpreting language/literature.

 

 

208Seminar in Comparative Literature, Professor Karim

"Reading the Magical Realist Novel across the Globe"

This course investigates how "magical realism" as a literary style and mode of narration is employed in a number of world literature contexts, beginning with the The Arabian Nights, one of the oldest and popular oral narratives in the world which is suggestive of the earliest use of the magical elements in storytelling.  Other novels include: Gabriel Garcia Marquez's One Hundred Years of Solitude (Columbia), Toni Morrison's Beloved (US), Salman Rushdie'sMidnight's Children (India) and Abdelrahman Munif's Cities of Salt (Saudi Arabia). We will also read some critical texts to understand how magical realism has been adapted to address socio-political, cultural, and historical moments and traumas such as colonialism and its aftermath, slavery and violence, and the emergence and rise of nation-states and nationalist narratives. 

In addition to reading these wonderful texts, students will write two short papers and one longer paper. The longer paper will allow students to either write their own magical realist narrative (fiction) or do a more investigative research paper into one of the texts we're reading or select among several other classics of magical realist literature. 

 

  

English 230: Bestsellers of the Eighteenth Century, Professor Brada-Williams

In this course we will focus on the authors and texts that excited readers in the 18th century as the novel in English was just developing and satire in English was reaching its zenith.  You will read texts that make Downton Abbey seem like a tepid imitation.  Some of these texts, are still perennial favorites throughout the world while others dropped in popularity with changes in moral norms.  We will explore how these texts appeal to readers then and now as well as how these texts intersect with the material world of the literary marketplace, the growth of British imperialism, and the gender politics of the time. This is an excellent course to take in preparation for part one of the MA comprehensive exam or for contemporary novelists interested in the origins of the form.

 

 

English 240: Graduate Poetry Workshop:  Professor Soldofsky

This semester’s workshop theme is “Singing School”:  Lyric Poetry and Song Lyrics.  In this MFA-level poetry workshop, we will explore the links and blurred boundaries between lyric poetry and song lyrics (in rock, jazz, and new classical genres). Students will create a portfolio of ten new poems plus write weekly blog entries and give a presentation on a poet or poet/songwriter who whose work we discuss in the workshop.  In addition to the students’ original poems and song lyrics that we will workshop, we will examine the work of other poets and poet/songwriters including: Kim Addonizio, Elizabeth Bishop, Elvis Costello, Leonard Cohen, Bob Dylan, Louise Gluck, Seamus Heaney, Paul Muldoon, Joni Mitchell, Robert Pinsky, Lou Reed, Bruce Springsteen, Derek Walcott, Lucinda Williams, Amy Winehouse, Neil Young, and Warren Zevon.  Students who are not enrolled in the MFA program should send samples of their poetry and/or song lyrics to the instructor to receive permission to enroll in the workshop.

                    Robert Pinsky                  Paul Muldoon

 

 

241, Lurie Chair Andrew Sean Greer

                         Andrew Sean Greer 

 

English 242: Nonfiction Writing Workshop, Professor Cathleen Miller

Publishers Weekly calls “narrative nonfiction” the two hottest words in publishing today. In this class we will explore the genre’s myriad facets by reading the Best American Essays 2013 edited by Cheryl Strayed. We’ll discuss the techniques and fundamentals of creative nonfiction for newcomers; seasoned veterans are welcome to bring in portions of their theses for workshop. And of course by popular demand our no-stress experimentation with the ubiquitous two pagers will continue, culminating in our end-of-the-semester reading and celebration.

 


Engl 255: Genres of American Literature, Professor John Engell

Title:  AMERICAN ROMANTICS, AMERICAN BEATS

In this seminar we will read poetry, fiction, and non-fiction prose by a number of American "Romantic" writers active during the mid-nineteenth century and a number of American "Beat" writers active during the mid-twentieth century.   The writers we read and discuss will be selected from the following lists:

American "Romantics":  Ralph Waldo Emerson, Henry David Thoreau, Margaret Fuller, Walt Whitman, Emily Dickinson, Herman Melville,

American "Beats":  William S. Burroughs, Allen Ginsberg, Jack Kerouac, Gary Snyder, Diane DiPrima, Anne Waldman

NOTE:  We will not study all of these writers, but a significant number of them.

In addition to extensive reading, the seminar will require each student to do several oral presentations accompanied by handouts, several short two page essays, and a longer essay, either a research essay or a more personal "creative" essay.  I intend this seminar will be of value to both M.A. and M.F.A. students.

 

 

Engl 256: Twentieth-Century English Literature, Professor Wilson:

The seminar will trace the origins of literary modernism in early twentieth-century literature and their ramifications through the remainder of the century. The anchor will be Ulysses. We will also read Lawrence's Women in Love, Woolf's To the Lighthouse, and Greene's The End of the Affair. Yeats's and Hardy's verse will be at the center of our investigation of the period's poetry. We will supplement their work with selections from Auden, MacNeice, Larkin, Heaney and Muldoon. Requirements: One short explication; a long comparative essay; and one class presentation.