Spring 2017 Undergraduate Course Descriptions

ENGL 20: The Graphic Novel

Sams, Edwin B, MW 12:00-13:15

This class focuses on the interplay of written and visual forms of narration in the illustrated texts that have come to be called “graphic novels,” the styles and methods of which have come to have a profound impact on both literature and film production in the 21st century. English 20 will focus on a few of the graphic novel’s obsessions: autobiography, war, and family—and the surprising frequency in which these three themes intersect.


ENGL 21: Mystery and Detective Fiction

Williams, Mary, TR 9:00-10:15

Examines mystery or detective fiction from its inception in the 19th century and follow it across the globe as the genre has been taken on and developed by a variety of cultures.


ENGL 22: Fantasy and Science Fiction

Lore, Craig M, TR 13:30-14:45

English 22 covers historical works of fantasy from the Norse, Celtic, and Chinese traditions: Sigurd the Dragon-Slayer, King Arthur, and King Monkey. We will also consider seminal works of science fiction: The Time Machine, Rossum's Universal Robots, Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?. Shorter works will cover early Dracula and cyberpunk.


ENGL 56A: English Literature to the Late 18th Century 

Eastwood, Adrienne, MW 10:30-11:45

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.


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

Wilson, William, MW 16:30:00-17:45:00

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.


ENGL 68A: American Literature to 1865                

Chow, Balance T P, MW 9:00-10:15

A survey of major and significant texts, movements, and writers exemplifying the literature of the United States of America, from colonial days to the period of the Civil War.  Required: Student presentations, short papers, and exams.


ENGL 68B: American Literature 1865 to Present

Maio, Samuel J, MW 12:00-13:15

A survey of major and significant texts, movements, and writers exemplifying the literature of the United States of America, covering the period from the end of the Civil War to the present.  Required: Student presentations, short papers, and exams.


ENGL 71: Creative Writing           

Harrison, Kelly, M 16:30-19:15

In this course, we will read and write poetry, creative non-fiction, and short fiction. The course will be taught using a combination of discussions and writing workshops. In the discussion, we will closely read and analyze works of creative writing. In the writing workshops, we will analyze and critique the creative work of fellow class members. We will produce an ebook (.epub format) using your work. Past books: http://www.sjsu.edu/people/kelly.harrison/anthologies/


ENGL 71: Creative Writing           

James, Robert F, TR 15:00-16:15               

Kirby, Sheree, W 9:00-11:45      

Logan, Jill, TR 13:30-14:45           

Lappin, Linda, TR 12:00-13:15  

Maio, Samuel J, MW 16:30-17:45             

Mouton, Tommy, MW 12:00-13:15

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.


ENGL 100A: Writing Competency Through Genres            

Sonntag, Owen Henry, MW 16:30-17:45; TR 16:30-17:45

St. Dennis, Allison R, TR 7:30-8:45

Satisfies the WST requirement if passed with a C or better (C- or lower will not satisfy the WST). Prepares students for 100W through drafting, feedback, and revision to demonstrate writing competency. Develops ability to analyze written genres used in the students' chosen disciplines as well as write analytical and reflective essays. Prerequisite: Must have failed the WST at least twice. Note: A CR/NC option may not be used to satisfy the WST requirement.


ENGL 100W: Writing Workshop                 

Stork, Nancy P,  TR 10:30-11:45; TR 15:00-16:15

Advanced workshops in Reading and Composition, Creative Arts, English Studies, and Technical Writing. A Writing Workshop is also available for foreign students.



ENGL 100W: Writing Workshop                

English, Karen A, TR 13:30-14:45

Writing Workshop satisfies the English major requirement for learning how to write critical analysis of a variety of works of literature. This section focuses on the topic of Literature & Medicine. Texts include Lying Awake by Mark Salzman, W;t, A Play by Margaret Edson, Can’t We Talk about Something More Pleasant? By Roz Chast, and The Best of the Best American Poetry, 25th Anniversary Edition, ed. Robert Pinsky


ENGL 100WB: Written Communication: Business

Hessler, John G, M 18:00-20:45; T 18:00-20:45; W 18:00-20:45; R 18:00-20:45

Kirby, Sheree, M 9:00-11:45       

Landau, Linda B, W 9:00-11:45

Lindelof, Leanne E, T 16:30-19:15

Lo, Laimin, R 18:00-20:45, F 9:30-12:15

Mujal, Carlos, W18:00-20:45

This hands-on course is designed to simulate actual business communication scenarios (oral and written) that are encountered by business professionals daily during the course of their careers.  Assignments will enable students to practice and immediately apply both practical and theoretical aspects of organizational communication directly in real-life work situations. Communication mechanics and style (practical), and the appropriateness of messages and methods based on specific organizational situations (theoretical) will be emphasized. 


ENGL 101: Introduction to Literary Criticism      

Harris, Katherine D, TR 9:00-10:15

Do you see hidden meanings in literary texts? Movies? Games? There are many possible readings of all literary and visual texts. Even your own identity governs your interpretation of the material. 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 (Feminist, Queer, Marxist, Post-Colonial, and Digital Humanities theories). 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. Co-requisite: ENGL 100W


ENGL 103: Modern English           

Mitchell, Linda C, MW 10:30-11:45; MW 15:00-16:15

This course provides a survey of Modern English phonology, morphology, syntax, semantics, transformational grammar, and the universality of linguistic structures. Material in the course will also focus on some recurring problems of usage and/or correctness, regional and social varieties of English, the role of pragmatics in using language to communicate, and the historical development of English, especially as it affects the language today. The course also includes ReedKellogg Diagrams.


ENGL 106: Editing for Writers    

Thompson, Mark A, MW 12:00-13:15

In this class, we cover all the fundamentals that writers need to know about editing and working as a professional editor. This includes proofreading and copyediting, as well as sentence-level and docu­ment-level editing. The Basics? Fix gnarly sentences. Make ugly paragraphs pretty. Learn how to work with other writers. Learn how to get editing jobs. Gain the confidence to explain your edits and defend them against the howling mobs! Required class for Professional and Technical Writing concentration.


ENGL 110: Visual Rhetoric & Document Design

Thompson, Mark A, TR 10:30-11:45

Combines visual rhetorical theory with design techniques to teach writers about the visual aspects of written and digital communication. In this hands-on course, students will design documents, including a poster, a book chapter, and promotional materials for local nonprofits.


ENGL 112A: Children's Literature             

Browne, Clare J, MW 16:30-17:45

Vora, Roohi, TR 9:00-10:15

Study of literature for elementary and intermediate grades, representing a variety of cultures. Evaluation and selection of texts.  


ENGL 112B: Literature for Young Adults                 

Hervey, Shannon K, F 9:30-12:15

Study of selected literary material, representing a variety of cultures, chosen to motivate secondary school readers.


ENGL 113: Gothic Novel and Horror Fiction

Harris, Katherine D, TR 15:00-16:15

Study of the gothic novel in Britain and America 1795-1900. Current trends in horror fiction and films will be traced to these predecessors.


ENGL 116: Myth in Literature    

Stork, Nancy P, TR 9:00-10:15

Relations between archetypes, artistic style and cultural context in masterworks, ancient through modern. 


ENGL 123B: Literature for Global Understanding: Africa                

Chow, Balance, MW 10:30-11:45

Course promotes global understanding by examining the cultures and literary arts of a selected region of the world, Africa, and covers representative texts and authors from North Africa and Sub-Saharan Africa.


ENGL 123D: Literature for Global Understanding: Asia 

Chow, Balance, MW 15:00-16:15

English 123D examines the literary production and cultural heritage of Asia. In this semester we will focus on modern works of fiction representing India, China, Japan, Korea, and other Asian countries, paying particular attention to social, economic, and political forces (esp. globalization) transforming the region. Students interested in any aspect of Asia will be able to study appropriate works of their choice. Knowledge of Asian and/or other modern languages will be most welcome. Presentations, short papers, research project, and exams.


ENGL 125: European Literature: Homer to Dante             

Mitchell, Linda C, MW 12:00-13:15

This course offers an introduction to some of the major literary works of the first 2,000 years of Western Culture—works of great genius and superb craft. They are as much a part of our heritage as that which we receive from our parents. Our goal this semester is to take possession of that heritage—like heirs who have come of age—by understanding how these works are connected to each other and to us via a series of parallel and contrasting patterns of ideas and experiences that form a path of human continuity across time and place. Students will engage and explore the texts from a variety of contexts and viewpoints: textual, literary, political, social, and cultural; become familiar with a range of critical approaches to the texts; and demonstrate a working knowledge of the texts’ influences within the Western literary tradition.


ENGL 129: Introduction to Career Writing & Digital Publishing 

Thompson, Mark A, TR 13:30-14:45

In this course, students write to get published in the places that they read, drafting and revising about whatever they’re into:  food, video games, fashion, high-tech, science—whatever.  Students also write and produce English Department magazines, an in-class podcast series, the ProfTech website, and their own blog. Expand your portfolio, learn some new skills, and march boldly forth with a publishable work in hand. Required class for the Professional and Technical Writing concentration.


ENGL 130: Writing Fiction            

Maio, Samuel J, MW 13:30-14:45

English 130 is a fiction workshop class in which each student will write short stories.  Each of these short stories will be workshopped in class, after which each story will be rewritten. Both drafts—pre-and post-workshop—will be included in each student’s end-of-semester Portfolio. In addition to writing short stories and revising them, each student will be responsible for helping to workshop all stories written by classmates.  And each student will be responsible for reading a number of assigned, published short stories that will serve as models for writing successful short fiction.


ENGL 130: Writing Fiction            

Taylor, Nick, TR 12:00-13:15

Prerequisite: English 71. This workshop focuses on the craft of fiction writing. We will begin the semester by reading works of contemporary short fiction. You will learn to read as writers, not critics (there is a difference!). Each student is required to submit two original short stories for review by the class. Lively participation and written commentary is required. In lieu of a final exam, you will turn in a substantial revision of one story.


ENGL 131: Writing Poetry             

Maio, Samuel J, MW 10:30-11:45

This course focuses on the work of the poet and the work of the poem. The poet's task is to envision, write, and revise using all the poetic tools necessary. What are they? Why choose one over the other? What are contemporary poets using today? The work of the poem is to become more than the sum of its parts, not merely well-chosen words, but art. Great expectations all the way around, but we’ll get to work writing, reading, and discussing poetry, poetic device, your work and discoveries.


ENGL 133: Reed Magazine           

Miller, Cathy A, T 15:00-17:45

Reed Magazine will be producing its 150th-anniversary issue in spring 2017. This semester we’ll focus on the production aspects of publication: copyedit and proofread the submissions chosen in the fall, then design, layout and print the journal. We'll also look at ways to market Reed through advertising, our website, and tabling at events. And last but not least, we'll host a launch party to celebrate the debut of our new issue!

You must receive instructor permission by contacting Prof. Miller to enroll in this course.


ENGL 139: Visiting Authors          

Miller, Cathy A, R 16:30-19:15

Students will read the works of contemporary writers visiting the Center for Literary Arts during the current semester. Includes meetings with visiting authors and attending their various presentations. See www.litart.org for a calendar of events. Required for the Creative Writing Concentration.


ENGL 140B: Beowulf       

Stork, Nancy P, TR 13:30-14:45

This class is the second class in a year-long sequence of Old English. Students will be translating all 3,182 lines of Beowulf and investigating its linguistic, historical and cultural context as the first epic poem recorded in the English language.


ENGL 144: Shakespeare I              

Eastwood, Adrienne, MW 13:30-14:45

This course will introduce you to some of the major plays of William Shakespeare. Each play will be considered both within the context of the cultural and political atmosphere in early modern England and through the critical lenses provided by postmodern theories of literature. Students will gain a basic knowledge of Shakespeare’s thematic questions and a solid understanding of the language he used to explore these themes. For example, we will discuss the construction of the family as a mini-commonwealth and the political impact that added to Shakespeare’s dramatic productions. Similarly, we will consider the relationship between patriarchal and monarchal authority, and the ways in which related ideologies circulated among Elizabethans.


ENGL 145: Shakespeare & Performance                

Eastwood, Adrienne, MW 9:00-10:15

In this course, we will examine in-depth several of Shakespeare’s plays, specifically addressing issues of performance and interpretation.   Placing each play in the context of its original performance during Shakespeare’s time, and its life on stage and screen in the ensuing centuries, encourages an engagement with the ways in which re-imagining Shakespeare’s works helps them retain their vitality and cultural relevance. Paying particular attention to modern productions, we will analyze the ways in which production elements such as setting, casting, staging, costumes, editing, and individual performances shape and create meaning (or fail to do so) for the audiences of today. Placing these plays within this context of performance will raise larger issues about the complex relationships between the Shakespearean canon and its ever changing audiences. Students will respond to each Shakespearean play text through both writing and oral interpretation, integrating speech and dramatic performance with an understanding of the complexities of plot, characterization, and dramatic form. Required for the English Single-Subject Credential


ENGL 149: The Romantic Period

Douglass Jr., Paul, TR 13:30-14:45

Literary romanticism was born in revolution. Many British writers of the Romantic era were imaginatively engaged with other countries, including France, Germany, Italy, Ireland, Switzerland, Greece, Albania, and the Middle East. This course will focus on works of the period that reflect this fascination with the foreign and alien, or “other,” while surveying significant works of Romantic literature and probing their major themes, including the turn toward psychological realism and Kantian psychology, the celebration of the individual with its consequent political liberalism, the divinity of Nature, the importance of childhood, and the reinvention of literary forms in light of the speechlessness produced by the writers’ confrontation with the "sublime." Writers to be discussed include Dacre, Lamb, Byron, Keats, Shelley, Wordsworth, Blake, Coleridge, Inchbald, Hemans, and De Quincey.


ENGL 151: Twentieth Century Poetry

Soldofsky, Alan D, TR 12:00-13:15

Major British and American poets, including figures such as Yeats, Eliot, Pound, Frost, Auden, Stevens, Rich.


ENGL 165: Topics in Ethnic American Literature: Muslim, Arab, Outsider: Literature of MiddleEast America

Karim, Persis, TR 15:00-16:15

This course focuses on literature by writers from a lesser known group that is loosely identified as "Muslim Americans." We will read and analyze novels, poetry, and films by Arab and Muslim Americans, as well as other Middle Eastern diaspora writers. Includes literature written after 9/11 and in the context of "Islamophobia" by Randa Jarrar, Mohsin Hamid, and Naomi Shihab Nye, among others, that posits "outsiderness" against a desire to represent and articulate an American identity.


ENGL 168: The American Novel

Douglass Jr., Paul, TR 10:30-11:45

This course follows the development of the American novel from romance through realism and naturalism to modernism and post-modernism, helping you develop your understanding of what the genre is, or might be—and to whom. Writers to be discussed included Sherwood Anderson, Junot Diaz, William Faulkner, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Harriet Beecher Stowe, Ernest Hemingway, Kurt Vonnegut, Alice Walked, Vladimir Nabokov, and Edith Wharton.


ENGL 169: Ethnicity in American Literature        

Chow, Balance, MW 13:30-14:45

Study of race and ethnicity in the literary arts of North America. Selected works of authors from such groups as African Americans, European Americans, Asian Americans, Chicanos, Latinos and American Indians.


ENGL 180: Individual Studies     

Arranged with Instructor


ENGL 181: Special Topics: Dickens in the Digital Age

Harris, Katherine D, TR 12:00-13:15

Charles Dickens (1812-1870) became one of the most prolific novelists of the nineteenth-century by marketing his writing through new forms of print. His serialized fiction appealed to the popular masses from England to America, a popularity that was strengthened by Dickens' willingness to perform to live audiences. Along with his serials, magazine essays, editorial duties, political essays, Dickens also appealed for international copyright – surely inspired by the piracy of his novels but also in recognition that authorship was a commercial endeavor and a form of intellectual property. In this course, we will explore Charles Dickens' writings in the context of nineteenth-century print culture, a rising industrialized nation, and that nation's imperialist ethos. In addition to reading physical facsimiles of a few of Dickens' serialized novels, participants will research Dickens' enduring impact on the nineteenth-century and beyond; participants will also engage in lively discussions with Dickens experts from the UC Santa Cruz Dickens Universe and our own local Dickens scholars. Our concluding project will involve creating a digital scholarly edition of the original Hard Times serials currently held in the SJSU Special Collections. With the help of the Special Collections Director, and with the support of the Dean of King Library, the resulting project will become a part of public scholarship about this internationally-renowned author.


ENGL 193: Capstone Seminar

Douglass Jr., Paul, TR 9:00-10:15

Culminating course for English majors to reflect on their experiences and their progress toward meeting the Department Learning Goals. Texts to be discussed include those self-selected by students, a play by Lillian Hellman, works of fiction by Italo Calvino, George Saunders, Brian Selznick, and the authentic text of The Arabian Nights, translated in 1990 by Husain Haddawy. Involves reading groups, workshops, seminar sessions, activities, and writing assignments, including a final portfolio.


ENGL 193: Capstone Seminar: Seven ways of looking at an English Major

Miller, Shannon, TR 12:00-13:15

Seven ways of looking at an English Major: As essayist, as creative writer, as reader, as critic, as researcher, as book group participant, as graduate-with-a B.A.-in-literature-and-highly-employable. Texts include Anne Fadiman, At Large and At Small; Ismael Beah, A Long Way Gone; Joan Didion, The Year of Magical Thinking; Gerald Durrell, My Family and Other Animals; Alison Bechdel, Fun Home.


ENGL 199: Professional/Technical Writing Internship   

Thompson, Mark (Arranged)

This independent study requires that students secure a writing internship with a local business (while the department can’t guarantee an internship, we can put students in touch with companies that have expressed an interest in SJSU interns). 120 hours of workplace experience are combined with academic readings in professional writing. In a final essay, students compare their workplace experience to the academic literature on workplace writing.