Spring 2017   Fall 2016  

Spring 2017

ENGL 105-01

American Voices

  • Days: TR
  • Meeting Time: 09:40 am-11:10 am
  • Room: MAIN 002
  • Instructor: Daylanne English

Notes: In this introductory English course, we will listen to a wide range of American voices in a number of genres, including short stories, novels, poetry, and a play. The course will focus on U.S. identities in relation to age, race, gender, sexuality, and class in contexts of experimentation and speculation, including speculative fiction and futurism. The texts in this course, although all are “American,” explore what it means to give voice to many differences within a national identity, particularly for young people and for girls and women of color. What literary forms best suit an exploration and representation of such identities? How do our authors stretch received forms so as to accommodate the content of their characters’ lives? We will study works by Toni Morrison, Sandra Cisneros, Junot Díaz, Sherman Alexie, Louise Erdrich, Tim O’Brien, and Octavia Butler, among others. Course requirements include: an in-class oral presentation, a brief written response to each primary reading, and three essays of about 5-7 pages each (one of which must be revised). This course will fulfill either the foundation course in literature requirement or the literature by U.S. writers of color requirement for the English major.

ENGL 115-01

Shakespeare

  • Days: TR
  • Meeting Time: 09:40 am-11:10 am
  • Room: OLRI 301
  • Instructor: Penelope Geng

Notes: Shakespeare has been called the “star of poets” and “wonder of the stage.” How do his plays delight, puzzle, and instil “wonder”? How did he transform Renaissance poetry? In this course, we will focus on some of Shakespeare’s most enduring works, including the Sonnets, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Twelfth Night, Richard II, Henry IV, Part 1, Macbeth, Hamlet, King Lear, and The Tempest. Our study comprises class discussion, essays, presentations, and performances (watching professional productions and performing scenes from the plays). We will analyze Shakespeare’s formal and stylistic technique. We will examine issues of character, action, and plot. For centuries, Shakespeare has inspired writers to perfect their craft and pursue their creative ambitions. You are invited to participate in this exciting and evolving literary tradition.

ENGL 135-01

Poetry

  • Days: TR
  • Meeting Time: 09:40 am-11:10 am
  • Room: NEILL 409
  • Instructor: Taylor Schey

Notes: It is entirely possible for one to discuss the meanings of most texts—their themes, morals, historical significances, and so on—without paying much attention to the formal and linguistic elements that produce such meanings. Fortunately, poems make this difficult and ask us to attend more closely to how language does the things that it does. How, for example, can a single word generate multiple, even conflicting, interpretations concerning its significance? How do the rhetorical devices foregrounded in poetry—such as metaphor, metonymy, apostrophe, and personification—structure the modes of relation through which we organize our lives? How do various arrangements of words move us to tears, open new worlds, instigate actions, and even make nothing happen (as W. H. Auden famously poeticizes the power of poetry)? This introductory course will take up these and other questions as we develop our abilities to read, write, and think as students of literature. While our primary focus will be on learning how to engage with the subtleties of poetic language, this engagement will lead us to consider the broader philosophical, political, and cultural issues that our readings raise, concerning, for example, the place of poetry in modern life, the use and uselessness of poetry, the type of knowledge (and ignorance) that poetry may or may not offer, even the question of what poetry is. Readings will draw from British and American lyric poetry in its different sub-genres (e.g. sonnet, elegy, ode, dramatic monologue, lyrical ballad). This course counts as a foundation course toward the English major, but all students are welcome and no prior knowledge or experience is expected.

ENGL 136-01

Drama

  • Days: TR
  • Meeting Time: 09:40 am-11:10 am
  • Room: OLRI 170
  • Instructor: Andrea Kaston Tange

Notes: What relationships exist between theater, current events, and the public? You may have heard that less than two weeks ago, the cast of the hit musical Hamilton, on Broadway, delivered an address directly to VP-elect Mike Pence, who was in the audience that night. Suddenly, every news outlet was talking about whether this was "appropriate" or not. People throughout the history of theater will tell you: theater has always been political. It has been a means of offering public commentary, challenging or upholding norms, voicing a protest, or offering an alternative view that presents a world the writers would prefer to live in. In ENGL 136, we will read plays--both classic and modern--as literary texts and talk about the craft that went into their writing. But we will also take field trips to see several plays at different theaters in Minneapolis and St. Paul; we will study theater reviews and write some of our own; we will meet people who work on technical aspects of productions (like lighting and costumes) and learn about the craft of building productions; and we will think, talk, and write about the relationship between the dramatic arts and current events. As part of our larger goal of putting theater in context, the "current" events we study will include Renaissance debates about kingship and property when we read William Shakespeare, and nineteenth-century debates about the proper place of women when we read Susan Glaspell.

ENGL 137-01

Novel

  • Days: MWF
  • Meeting Time: 02:20 pm-03:20 pm
  • Room: MAIN 001
  • Instructor: James Dawes

Notes: In this course we will read some of the most popular novels ever written in the United States. They will be heart-wrenchingly beautiful, tear-jerkingly sad, gut-bustingly funny, and seriously weird. We will discuss love, death, the meaning of life, beauty, cruelty, freaks, war, and comedy.

ENGL 150-01

Introduction to Creative Writing

  • Days: MWF
  • Meeting Time: 10:50 am-11:50 am
  • Room: NEILL 102
  • Instructor: James Dawes

Notes: This course is an introduction to the writing of fiction, nonfiction, and poetry. We will use a variety of exercises, assignments, and readings to help students become comfortable as writers of short stories, personal essays, poetry, memoir, and literary journalism. We will read and discuss works by established authors to uncover some of the techniques they have used to make their writing effective, and we will workshop each other’s writing in a supportive, constructively critical manner.


ENGL 150-02

Introduction to Creative Writing

  • Days: MWF
  • Meeting Time: 09:40 am-10:40 am
  • Room: MAIN 002
  • Instructor: Matthew Burgess

Notes: The focus of this course is on the development of skills for writing poetry and short fiction through a close study of the techniques involved in these forms, analysis of model literary works, and frequent writing exercises. This course must be completed at Macalester as a PREREQUISITE for the further study of creative writing at Macalester. (4 credits)

ENGL 150-03

Introduction to Creative Writing

  • Days: MWF
  • Meeting Time: 12:00 pm-01:00 pm
  • Room: THEATR 205
  • Instructor: Talia Mailman

Notes: “Out of the quarrel with others we make rhetoric,” Yeats tells us. “Out of the quarrel with ourselves we make poetry.” And fiction. And nonfiction. From January to May, we’ll find places for the written word in an increasingly chaotic world, developing the skills and habits of mind that will help you become a more discerning and thoughtful reader, as well as a more articulate and compassionate writer. In order to do this, we’ll focus on the places where poetry, short fiction, and creative nonfiction converge and diverge, reading works by folks like Anne Carson and Ocean Vuong, Ta-Nehisi Coates and Claudia Rankine, Isaac Babel and Clarice Lispector. Inspired by these forms, you’ll pick up some tools and tricks to use in your own work by way of frequent writing exercises, revisions, and in-class writing workshops. The emphasis, above all, will be on craft and process, giving you the tools to write the kind of work you want to write.

ENGL 150-04

Introduction to Creative Writing

  • Days: MWF
  • Meeting Time: 09:40 am-10:40 am
  • Room: MAIN 009
  • Instructor: Ping Wang

Notes: The focus of this course is on the development of skills for writing poetry and short fiction through a close study of the techniques involved in these forms, analysis of model literary works, and frequent writing exercises. This course must be completed at Macalester as a PREREQUISITE for the further study of creative writing at Macalester. (4 credits)

ENGL 150-05

Introduction to Creative Writing

  • Days: MWF
  • Meeting Time: 10:50 am-11:50 am
  • Room: MAIN 011
  • Instructor: Ping Wang

Notes: The focus of this course is on the development of skills for writing poetry and short fiction through a close study of the techniques involved in these forms, analysis of model literary works, and frequent writing exercises. This course must be completed at Macalester as a PREREQUISITE for the further study of creative writing at Macalester. (4 credits)

ENGL 150-06

Introduction to Creative Writing

  • Days: TR
  • Meeting Time: 03:00 pm-04:30 pm
  • Room: NEILL 217
  • Instructor: Benjamin Voigt

Notes: The focus of this course is on the development of skills for writing poetry and short fiction through a close study of the techniques involved in these forms, analysis of model literary works, and frequent writing exercises. This course must be completed at Macalester as a PREREQUISITE for the further study of creative writing at Macalester. (4 credits)

ENGL 150-07

Introduction to Creative Writing

  • Days: MWF
  • Meeting Time: 09:40 am-10:40 am
  • Room: MAIN 011
  • Instructor: Talia Mailman

Notes: “Out of the quarrel with others we make rhetoric,” Yeats tells us. “Out of the quarrel with ourselves we make poetry.” And fiction. And nonfiction. From January to May, we’ll find places for the written word in an increasingly chaotic world, developing the skills and habits of mind that will help you become a more discerning and thoughtful reader, as well as a more articulate and compassionate writer. In order to do this, we’ll focus on the places where poetry, short fiction, and creative nonfiction converge and diverge, reading works by folks like Anne Carson and Ocean Vuong, Ta-Nehisi Coates and Claudia Rankine, Isaac Babel and Clarice Lispector. Inspired by these forms, you’ll pick up some tools and tricks to use in your own work by way of frequent writing exercises, revisions, and in-class writing workshops. The emphasis, above all, will be on craft and process, giving you the tools to write the kind of work you want to write.

ENGL 194-01

Rhyming Worlds: Hebrew and Arabic Poetry through the Middle Ages

  • Days: MWF
  • Meeting Time: 02:20 pm-03:20 pm
  • Room: MAIN 002
  • Instructor: El Meligi, Goldman

Notes: *Cross-listed with CLAS 194-01* This course, taught in translation, examines the rich tradition of religious and secular poetry from the earliest examples of the Hebrew and Arabic languages through to the sophisticated literary expression of the medieval Andalusian era. Using a variety of literary theory and critical approaches we will read both standard biblical and Islamic poetry as well as lesser known erotic, pre-Islamic, and women poets. We will investigate the close linguistic and aesthetic relationship between Arabic and Hebrew literature, learn about the historical and socio-cultural contexts and literary environment of these Hebrew and Arabic poets, and become acquainted with other forms of art and modern literature related to and inspired by this poetry. Knowledge of Hebrew or Arabic not required, but certainly welcome. This course has been approved as a context course for all Classics major and minor tracks.

ENGL 230-01

Nineteenth-Century British Literature

  • Days: TR
  • Meeting Time: 01:20 pm-02:50 pm
  • Room: OLRI 170
  • Instructor: Andrea Kaston Tange

Notes: A study of literature's dynamic interaction with historical change in the period that has been called the "Pax Britannica" ("British Peace"), but also "The Age of Revolution," "The Age of Capital," "The Age of Democracy," and "The Age of Empire." Emphais on the diversity of forms emerging alongside the novel; poetry, drama, policital writing, and print journalism. Authors may include Wordsworth, Coleridge, the Shelleys (P.B. and Mary), Godwin, Keats, Bryon, Tennyson, Arnold, Rossetti, the Brontes (Charlotte and Emily), Swinburne, Hopkins, Pater, Carlyle, Mill, and Marx. Novelists may include those listed under English 331. Articles and manifestos from Blackwood's, The Westminster Review, The Saturday Review, and Household Words. Particular themes vary. (4 credits)

ENGL 240-01

20th Century British Literature: The Politics of Place

  • Days: TR
  • Meeting Time: 01:20 pm-02:50 pm
  • Room: MAIN 002
  • Instructor: Amy Elkins

Notes: This semester, we will study the literature of Great Britain and Ireland from 1900 to the present. During this period, the British Isles underwent exciting and radical changes, from the fading of the empire to the emergence of new and contestatory perspectives on race, class, and gender. In this course, we will pay particular attention to how literary texts can illuminate relationships between place and the political. We will ask, for instance, how twentieth-century British and Irish texts suggest interactions between built environments (e.g. museums, estate houses, or operating rooms) and processes of social and political change (e.g. world wars, revolution, mass protest, or the rise of the welfare state). We will also ask, in a related manner, how texts illuminate natural spaces (e.g. bogs, rivers, or islands) as politicized, from providing sites of nostalgia and romance to offering metaphors for civilization and the primitive. In addition to writing several essays, students will collaborate on a PlaceMaking final project.

ENGL 260-01

Science Fiction: From Matrix Baby Cannibals to Brave New World

  • Days: W
  • Meeting Time: 07:00 pm-10:00 pm
  • Room: NEILL 402
  • Instructor: James Dawes

Notes: In the past fifty years science fiction has emerged as the primary cultural form in the Anglophone literary tradition for thinking about the eco-apocalypse: overpopulation, plague, resource depletion, natural and man-made disasters. It has also emerged as the primary cultural form for imagining a sustainable human future, through technological innovation, a balanced human ecosystem, and human flourishing through utopian principles of social justice. In this course we will examine works of science fiction as complex aesthetic achievements, as philosophical inquiries into the nature of being and time, and as theoretical examinations of the challenge of human sustainability. We will engage in intensive readings of contemporary texts, including works by Philip K. Dick, Margaret Atwood, Paolo Bacigalupi, P. D. James, Octavia Bulter, Yevgeny Zamyatin, Charles Stross, Walter Miller, Stanislaw Lem, China Miéville, Cormac McCarthy, and Kazuo Ishiguro. A companion film series will include the Matrix trilogy and other films in the genre. (4 credits)

ENGL 275-01

African American Literature to 1900

  • Days: TR
  • Meeting Time: 01:20 pm-02:50 pm
  • Room: MAIN 009
  • Instructor: Daylanne English

Notes: In this survey course, we will trace the development of an African American literary tradition from the end of the 18th century to the turn of the 20th century, from Phillis Wheatley to Charles Chesnutt. We will explore the longstanding project of writing an African American self as both a literary and a political subject. We will read closely, critically, and appreciatively from multiple genres, including poetry, slave narratives, short stories, essays, novels, and a memoir. We will supplement our exploration of those texts with critical and theoretical readings. Among the themes that will organize the course are: writing as a political act; generic innovation and subversion; representations of gendered and classed experiences of blackness in the United States; aesthetic innovation in relation to political and social change; an ongoing vernacular and/or oral tradition within African American arts and letters; the politics of audience; and the limits of literary representation itself. Requirements include: two papers of about 10 pages each, brief response papers to each new reading, an in-class presentation, class participation, and a final exam. This course fulfills either the literature by U.S. writers of color or the pre-1900 American literature requirement for the English major.

ENGL 281-01

Crafts of Writing: Fiction

  • Days: MWF
  • Meeting Time: 02:20 pm-03:20 pm
  • Room: THEATR 204
  • Instructor: Talia Mailman

Notes: This class works to consider the complexities and possibilities involved in the writing of short fiction. Together we’ll work to understand the foundational elements of the form – voice, character, point of view, plot (shape), setting (atmosphere), exposition, scene, and style. We’ll sharpen our abilities to talk about writing critically, constructively, and frequently. We’ll collectively define and challenge the conventions and principles of fiction, story, and art. In order to do this, we’ll embark on exercises, short assignments, and discussions of published fiction, combined with workshops of student stories and individual conferences with the instructor. If Flannery O’Connor is right when she tells us, “Writing is the action of grace in territory held by the devil,” we’ll carve ourselves a place and learn how to wield the tools necessary to create that act.

ENGL 282-01

The Crafts of Writing: Creative Nonfiction

  • Days: MWF
  • Meeting Time: 12:00 pm-01:00 pm
  • Room: MAIN 001
  • Instructor: Matthew Burgess

Notes: In this creative writing workshop, we will immerse ourselves in two different approaches to nonfiction storytelling: one that foregrounds the "I" (as seen in the personal memoir) and one that places that "I" in the background (as in the typical New Yorker profile). Students will be asked to write multiple drafts of two original works of short nonfiction, to critique each other’s work, and to read and discuss work by major writers such as James Baldwin, Joan Didion, E.B. White, Maxine Hong Kingston, Michel de Montaigne, and Junot Diaz.

ENGL 284-01

Crafts of Writing: Screenwriting

  • Days: MWF
  • Meeting Time: 03:30 pm-04:30 pm
  • Room: MAIN 011
  • Instructor: Peter Bognanni

Notes: *First day attendance required*

This course will focus in a variety of ways on the development of skills for writing screenplays, building on the work done in English 120. The emphasis will be on narrative films, with the objective of writing a feature-length screenplay during the semester. There will be extensive readings and discussion of published and unpublished screenplays in addition to regular writing assignments. The course may be conducted to some extent in workshop format; the emphasis will be on continuing to develop writing skills. (4 credits)

ENGL 286-01

Narrative Journalism

  • Days: M
  • Meeting Time: 07:00 pm-10:00 pm
  • Room: MAIN 002
  • Instructor: Stephen Smith

Notes: *First day attendance required* Taught by writer and journalist Stephen Smith (Executive Editor and Host of American RadioWorks, the national documentary series from American Public Media). This course will focus on creating vivid, economical prose as a foundation for many types of expository writing. The fundamental elements of narrative journalism will be explored. Students will do research and interviews for print journalism pieces. Students will write frequently, will edit each other, and will receive detailed suggestions on their writing from the instructor.

ENGL 294-02

Crafts of Writing:Prose Poems

  • Days: MWF
  • Meeting Time: 02:20 pm-03:20 pm
  • Room: NEILL 217
  • Instructor: Ping Wang

Notes: This workshop will study and experiment with the contents and forms of prose poems. We’ll read poems from the East to the West, from 300 BC Zhuangzi’s great lyrical prose to Gertrude Stein, and the contemporary masters such as John Olson, Lyn Hejinian and others. Our experiment will focus on the play and risk of language, mind, consciousness, sub-consciousness, mind and body through the form of prose poetry.

ENGL 294-03

Introduction to Literary Theory

  • Days: TR
  • Meeting Time: 03:00 pm-04:30 pm
  • Room: NEILL 213
  • Instructor: Taylor Schey

Notes: If you’ve taken courses in the humanities, then you’re probably aware of a field that goes by the nickname of “theory.” You may have heard of thinkers such as Judith Butler, Jacques Derrida, and Eve Kosofsky Sedgwick, though chances are you haven’t yet studied how their writings grew out of a common engagement with questions of language and textuality. This course offers you the opportunity to do so. Beginning with Ferdinand de Saussure’s groundbreaking Course in General Linguistics, we’ll trace the development of literary theory through structuralism, deconstruction, psychoanalysis, feminism, queer theory, postcolonial theory, posthumanism, and ecocriticism. Our approach will be to treat literary theory as a field of study in itself (rather than as an assortment of methodologies to apply to works of literature and other cultural texts), and, to that end, we’ll be reading exclusively primary texts from this field—though, if you engage these texts seriously, they will most likely change the way you read just about everything, from poems to images to television shows to text messages. This course will be of interest to all students who wish to learn about literary theory as well as to those who plan to pursue Ph.D. programs in literary studies. Authors include J. L. Austin, Roland Barthes, Lauren Berlant, Judith Butler, Hélène Cixous, Jacques Derrida, Lee Edelman, Michel Foucault, Sigmund Freud, Donna Haraway, Luce Irigaray, Roman Jakobson, Jacques Lacan, Claude Lévi-Strauss, Paul de Man, Timothy Morton, Ferdinand de Saussure, Eve Kosofsky Sedgwick, and Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak.

ENGL 294-04

Bloomsbury to Brexit: British Literature and Visual Culture

  • Days: TR
  • Meeting Time: 09:40 am-11:10 am
  • Room: NEILL 304
  • Instructor: Amy Elkins

Notes: Virginia Woolf famously claimed that “On or about December 1910 human character changed.” While many changes were underway as the world drifted towards WWI, a revolution was underway in the world of art. It was in 1910 that London hosted the first Post-Impressionist Exhibition, launching the stars of Cézanne, Van Gogh, Gauguin, Matisse, and Picasso onto the international stage. Literary and popular visual culture would be—and remain—intertwined across the 20th century, connections that are taking new and exciting shape in the current century. This course traces British visual culture and art from the seminal exhibit of 1910 to the present, starting with Woolf and the Bloomsbury Group and concluding with a study of British multiculturalism in novels, poetry, and popular images of resistance (including works by graffiti artist Banksy, Brexit activism, and the Irish Troubles murals). Students will participate in a painting workshop and read visual/media theory by John Berger, Laura Mulvey, and C.L.R. James. In addition to studying artists’ books in the special collections library and reading a graphic novel, students will read works of fiction and poetry by writers such as Virginia Woolf, T.S. Eliot, James Joyce, Hanif Kureishi, Salman Rushdie, Ali Smith, Linton Kwesi Johnson, and Jeanette Winterson.

ENGL 294-06

Green Language: Transatlantic Romanticism and Nature Poetry

  • Days: W
  • Meeting Time: 07:00 pm-10:00 pm
  • Room: MAIN 001
  • Instructor: Taylor Schey

Notes: *Cross-listed with ENVI 294-02* The concept of nature that informs most environmentalist discourses would seem to designate that which is independent of human meaning and value: the wilderness, the great outdoors, that thing over there which sustains and surrounds us. And yet, like all concepts, “Nature” has a history and is tied to specific ideas about what it means to be a human. This course studies a central chapter in this history, examining the place and function of the natural world in the Romantic and post-Romantic poetic tradition. In particular, we’ll explore how writers in this tradition interrogate the relation between human beings and the natural world, and we’ll ask how such poetry might open up an understanding of ecology that complicates some of the assumptions underwriting current environmental practices. While we’ll spend the most time with British Romanticism, our readings in poetry will take us across the pond and will span from the mid-eighteenth century to the present. We’ll also examine visual artworks as well as theoretical texts that range from Enlightenment aesthetics and epistemology to current ecocriticism and speculative realist philosophy. Poets include William Blake, Charlotte Smith, William Wordsworth, Samuel Taylor Coleridge, John Clare, Percy Shelley, John Keats, Lord Byron, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Henry David Thoreau, Robert Frost, Wallace Stevens, Jean Toomer, Elizabeth Bishop, Mary Oliver, and Louise Glück; prose writers include Edmund Burke, Immanuel Kant, Raymond Williams, Geoffrey Hartman, Paul de Man, Leo Marx, Timothy Morton, Donna Haraway, Jonathan Bate, Lawrence Buell, and Quentin Meillassoux.

ENGL 294-08

Musical Fictions

  • Days: MWF
  • Meeting Time: 01:10 pm-02:10 pm
  • Room: MUSIC 228
  • Instructor: Mark Mazullo

Notes: *Cross-listed with MUSI 294-01; counts as fine arts general distribution* What can music teach us about literature, and, conversely, how can literature lend meaning to music? In this course, we will read novels (and short stories, novellas, and/or plays) that deal explicitly with musical themes. Perspectives we will consider in our discussions include: the history of musical aesthetics; the question of musical value/s; musical empathy; music and semiotics; the history of subjectivity; music’s function in formations of race, class, gender, and sexuality. Our reading will include: Kazuo Ishiguro, The Unconsoled (1995); James Baldwin, “Sonny’s Blues” (1957); Rose Tremain, Music & Silence (1999); Peter Shaffer, Amadeus (1979); E. M. Forster, Howards End (1910); Marguerite Duras, “Moderato Cantabile” (1958); Jonathan Lethem, You Don’t Love Me Yet (2007); Michael Chabon, Telegraph Avenue (2012); and Richard Powers, Orfeo (2014). In a semester-long independent project, students will write a critical essay on a musical-fictional topic of their own devising.

ENGL 294-09

Muslim Women Writers

  • Days: MWF
  • Meeting Time: 03:30 pm-04:30 pm
  • Room: CARN 404
  • Instructor: Jenna Rice

Notes: *Cross-listed with INTL 294-01 and WGSS 294-02* Against the swirling backdrop of political discourses about women in the Islamic world, this course will engage with feminist and postcolonial debates through literary works by Muslim women writers. The course will begin with an exploration of key debates about women’s agency and freedom, the Islamic headscarf, and Qur’anic hermeneutics. With this in mind, we will turn to the fine details of literature and poetry by Muslim women. How do these authors constitute their worlds? How are gendered subjectivities constructed? And how do the gender politics of literary texts relate to the broader political and historical contexts from which they emerge? Themes will include an introduction to Muslim poetesses and Arabic poetic genres, the rise of the novel in the Arabic speaking world, and Muslim women’s literary production outside of the Middle East: from Senegal to South Asia, and beyond.

ENGL 294-10

Comparative Feminisms: Then and Today

  • Days: TR
  • Meeting Time: 03:00 pm-04:30 pm
  • Room: MAIN 009
  • Instructor: Sonita Sarker

Notes: *First day attendance required; cross-listed with AMST 294-03 and WGSS 240-01* Feminisms today show new ways of being and also carry the legacies of feminisms past. This course will explore the similarities and differences in feminist concepts and practices in the 20th and 21st centuries, through writings from North and South America, Western Europe, and South Asia. We will compare and contrast inside and also across generations. We will address issues such as racial/ethnic difference, political and sexual autonomy, nationalism, violence, and consumerism, through literature, film, music and other performative arts, and internet publishing. Some writers included are Gwendolyn Bennett, Victoria Ocampo, Grazia Deledda (from past generations) and shani jamila, Sonia Shah, and Adriana Lopez (from recent generations).

ENGL 394-01

1859

  • Days: M
  • Meeting Time: 07:00 pm-10:00 pm
  • Room: MAIN 010
  • Instructor: Andrea Kaston Tange

Notes: *First day attendance required* What might you learn about a culture and its history if you focused on a narrow moment of time and then read widely what was published within it? That is the question this course seeks to answer by focusing on the year 1859 in Britain. Charles Darwin’s The Origin of Species came out in 1859, igniting enormous controversies in the scientific world. That was also the year that the first sensation novel was published, launching a craze for crime and harrowing fiction. It saw the publication of Tennyson’s Idylls of the King, cementing his reputation and confirming that he had been the right choice for poet laureate in 1850. And it was the year that John Stuart Mill’s On Liberty rubbed shoulders with Samuel Smiles’s Self Help. New periodicals were launched that year, including Dickens’s wildly popular All the Year Round. This course draws its entire reading list from 1859 (including portions of everything mentioned above, and much more), inviting you to delve deeply into the literature, popular culture, science, social commentary, and controversies of the day. It seeks to examine the relationship between politics, novels, innovation, empire, and more, offering a mid-century vision of Victorian culture through multiple media, archival projects, and a reading experience that is designed to help you think about what it would have been like to be alive then, entering into some of these multiple conversations.

ENGL 394-02

Autobiographical and Speculative Fiction

  • Days: MWF
  • Meeting Time: 02:20 pm-03:20 pm
  • Room: MAIN 011
  • Instructor: Matthew Burgess

Notes: In this creative writing workshop, we will immerse ourselves in two different approaches to storytelling: the autobiographical and the purely imaginative, with an understanding of course that the two can’t ever fully be separated. Students will be asked to write multiple drafts of two original works of short fiction, to critique each other’s work, and to read and discuss work by major writers such as James Baldwin, Maxine Hong Kingston, Alison Bechdel, Haruki Murakami, the Brothers Grimm, and Raymond Carver.

ENGL 400-01

Capstone: Shakespeare and Literary Methods

  • Days: TR
  • Meeting Time: 03:00 pm-04:30 pm
  • Room: MAIN 001
  • Instructor: Penelope Geng

Notes: This capstone course for the Literature Path will focus on individual literary research projects. Students, in consultation with the professor, will develop the topic and form of the final project. All projects are to include a written research component. The course will provide instruction in the practice of advanced research (e.g. how to find sources using traditional and non-traditional databases) and in general literary methods (e.g. how to interpret a text using feminist criticism, historicism, psychoanalysis, phenomenology, performance studies, etc.). Our common text for the course will be Shakespeare’s Macbeth, which knocks at the gate of our collective consciousness, haunting us with its incomparable blend of the fair and the foul.

ENGL 494-01

Advanced Writing Workshop: Novella

  • Days: MWF
  • Meeting Time: 01:10 pm-02:10 pm
  • Room: MAIN 011
  • Instructor: Peter Bognanni

Notes: How do you go about creating something that has no official definition? Even your dictionary can’t decide if a novella is a “long short story” or a “short novel.” The novella might be the most uncertain of fictional forms, but it is also one of the most agile. It can span the length of an afternoon in one hundred and forty pages or tackle an entire lifetime in a scant sixty. It requires the restraint of a short story and the density and substance of a novel. Over the course of this semester, we will read a selection of novellas, both classic and contemporary, in an attempt to arrive at our own definitions of the form. More importantly, perhaps, you will also be writing your own novella and putting it up for workshop as it progresses. This senior capstone class is for creative writers ready for an ambitious project, an extended prose piece that defies easy categorization. Through discussion, peer review, and lectures about the craft of writing longer work, you will wrestle with this form in an attempt at understanding, maybe even mastery.

Fall 2016

ENGL 101-01

College Writing

  • Days: TR
  • Meeting Time: 09:40 am-11:10 am
  • Room: NEILL 227
  • Instructor: Rebecca Graham

Notes: Instruction and practice for writing in college. This course does not satisfy the requirements for the English major or minor. (4 credits)

ENGL 105-01

American Voices

  • Days: MWF
  • Meeting Time: 10:50 am-11:50 am
  • Room: MAIN 001
  • Instructor: Daylanne English

Notes: In this introductory English course, we will listen to a wide range of American voices in a number of genres, from short stories to novels, to graphic narratives, to a play. The course will focus on dystopia and utopia, misery and joy, in relation to physical or geographic space and time. The texts in this course, although all are “American,” explore what it means to live in a range of times and places that may be hostile or welcoming, or both. Our authors express and represent, and in some cases perform, complex and layered identities that have been shaped by: national origins, regions, class, languages, races and ethnicities, sexualities, genders, experiences of war and other forms of violence, aesthetic experiences of music and literature, and time periods including the future. In the process, they often test or expand the limits of literary, as well as visual and musical, form. We will study works by Sandra Cisneros, Junot Díaz, Tim O’Brien, Alison Bechdel, Octavia Butler, and Janelle Monàe, among others. Course requirements include: an in-class oral presentation, a brief written response to each primary reading, and three essays of about 5-7 pages each (one of which must be revised). This course will fulfill either the foundation course in literature requirement or the literature by U.S. writers of color requirement for the English major.

ENGL 115-01

Shakespeare

  • Days: MWF
  • Meeting Time: 09:40 am-10:40 am
  • Room: MAIN 002
  • Instructor: Penelope Geng

Notes: Shakespeare has been called the “star of poets” and “wonder of the stage.” How do his plays delight, puzzle, and instill “wonder”? How did he transform Renaissance poetry? To answer these questions, we will analyze Shakespeare’s formal and stylistic techniques in some of his most celebrated works, including the Sonnets, the comedies (Twelfth Night, Measure for Measure, The Tempest), the history plays (Richard II, Henry IV, Part 1), and the tragedies (Macbeth, Hamlet, and Othello). Our study will deepen through class discussions, essays, and performances: watching professional productions and performing scenes from the plays. For centuries, Shakespeare has inspired and challenged writers to imagine and feel in new ways, to perfect their craft and pursue their creative ambitions. You are invited to participate in this exciting and evolving literary tradition. This course fulfills the foundation course requirement for the English major. No prerequisites.

ENGL 125-01

Studies in Literature: Ghosts of the Victorians

  • Days: TR
  • Meeting Time: 09:40 am-11:10 am
  • Room: MAIN 002
  • Instructor: Andrea Kaston Tange

Notes: *First Year Course only* This first-year course opens with ghost stories from the heyday of the genre: specters and haunts from the pens of nineteenth-century masters, including the likes of Amy Levy, Charles Dickens, Grant Allen, Oscar Wilde, and Emily Bronte. Examining short stories and one novel, we will consider both what terrifies and how. What are the formal qualities of a good ghost story? What are the requirements it places on readers? To what degree are ghosts historically or culturally specific? With these readings for a strong base, the second half of the course considers the legacies of these Victorians. How do the shadows of the past haunt the present, in terms of unhealthy fascinations, or whispers of doubt, or standards of greatness to which a writer must rise? Are modern ghost stories forever in the debt of long-dead writers? How do the Victorians themselves haunt our present moment? Is steampunk or Victorian nostalgia a ghostly presence of the nineteenth century in the twenty-first? This course will ultimately consider both old and new ghost stories, stories that are tied to the nineteenth-century and those that attempt to break free of it, to investigate what is revealed about ourselves or our cultural moments by looking to the narratives of things that haunt us.

ENGL 135-01

Poetry

  • Days: MWF
  • Meeting Time: 10:50 am-11:50 am
  • Room: OLRI 170
  • Instructor: Taylor Schey

Notes: It is entirely possible for one to analyze the meanings of most texts—their themes, morals, historical significances, and so on—without paying much attention to the formal and linguistic elements that produce such meanings. Fortunately, poems make this difficult and ask us to attend more closely to how language does the things that it does. How, for example, can a single word generate multiple, even conflicting, interpretations concerning its significance? How do the rhetorical devices foregrounded in poetry—such as metaphor, metonymy, apostrophe, and personification—structure the modes of relation through which we organize our lives? How do various arrangements of words move us to tears, open new worlds, instigate actions, and even make nothing happen (as W. H. Auden famously poeticizes the power of poetry)? This introductory course will take up these and other questions as we develop our abilities to read, write, and think as students of literature. Our readings will draw mainly from British lyric poetry in its different sub-genres—e.g. sonnet, elegy, ode, dramatic monologue, lyrical ballad—but we will also make forays into works from different geographical contexts. While our primary focus will be on learning how to engage with the subtleties of poetic language, this engagement will lead us to consider the broader philosophical, political, and cultural issues that our readings raise, concerning, for example, the place of poetry in modern life, the use and uselessness of poetry, the type of knowledge (and ignorance) that poetry may or may not offer, and the very question of what poetry is. This course counts as a foundation course toward the English major, but all students are welcome and no prior knowledge or experience is expected.

ENGL 137-01

Novel: On Beauty

  • Days: MWF
  • Meeting Time: 09:40 am-10:40 am
  • Room: MAIN 111
  • Instructor: Amy Elkins

Notes: This course explores the concept of beauty in its many forms, from feelings associated with beautiful places and people to the history of visual attraction and attention. Reading novels from the nineteenth century to the present, we will learn to see beauty from different perspectives and to ask how the visible world intersects with larger social issues. For example, can the beautiful be political? What happens to nature's beauty in an era of environmental crisis? And how are shifting gender norms redefining beauty in today's world? The novels we will study critique and analyze these issues even as they revel in the complexity of beauty across time, space, artistic forms, media, and cultures. Our readings will likely include, among others, Northanger Abbey (Austen), A Picture of Dorian Gray (Wilde), A Room with a View (Forster), Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man (Joyce), The Hungry Tide (Ghosh), Lucy (Kincaid), and On Beauty (Smith). Students will write several analytical papers and create a book cover final project.

ENGL 150-01

Introduction to Creative Writing

  • Days: MWF
  • Meeting Time: 10:50 am-11:50 am
  • Room: MAIN 011
  • Instructor: Peter Bognanni

Notes: *First day attendance required* In this course we will dive right into the study of creative writing by reading and writing poetry, flash fiction, short stories, and personal essays. We will study how published authors craft their pieces, how they convey sensation and emotion, and how they artfully tell a story. Along the way, you’ll try your hand at each literary form we study. This is the basic template you can expect on a day-to-day basis. But, beyond this relatively simple pattern, what I hope will happen this semester is that you’ll lose yourself entirely to the daring act of creating literature. I hope you’ll disappear into what John Gardener calls the “vivid and continuous dream.” I hope you’ll use your growing knowledge of writing technique and literary history to say something fearless and artful about the world around you. And I hope you will see that what you write matters. Great creative writing aspires to more than just a pleasant diversion from life. At its best, it directly engages with life and even tries to change it. We look to stories, poems, and essays to give us an experience in language that we’ve never had before, to deepen our knowledge of the world, to allow us into the hearts and minds of others. I hope this semester will be a window into that experience for you.

ENGL 150-02

Introduction to Creative Writing

  • Days: MWF
  • Meeting Time: 03:30 pm-04:30 pm
  • Room: MAIN 011
  • Instructor: Peter Bognanni

Notes: *First day attendance required* In this course we will dive right into the study of creative writing by reading and writing poetry, flash fiction, short stories, and personal essays. We will study how published authors craft their pieces, how they convey sensation and emotion, and how they artfully tell a story. Along the way, you’ll try your hand at each literary form we study. This is the basic template you can expect on a day-to-day basis. But, beyond this relatively simple pattern, what I hope will happen this semester is that you’ll lose yourself entirely to the daring act of creating literature. I hope you’ll disappear into what John Gardener calls the “vivid and continuous dream.” I hope you’ll use your growing knowledge of writing technique and literary history to say something fearless and artful about the world around you. And I hope you will see that what you write matters. Great creative writing aspires to more than just a pleasant diversion from life. At its best, it directly engages with life and even tries to change it. We look to stories, poems, and essays to give us an experience in language that we’ve never had before, to deepen our knowledge of the world, to allow us into the hearts and minds of others. I hope this semester will be a window into that experience for you.

ENGL 150-03

Introduction to Creative Writing

  • Days: TR
  • Meeting Time: 09:40 am-11:10 am
  • Room: OLRI 101
  • Instructor: Matthew Burgess

Notes: The focus of this course is on the development of skills for writing poetry and short fiction through a close study of the techniques involved in these forms, analysis of model literary works, and frequent writing exercises. This course must be completed at Macalester as a PREREQUISITE for the further study of creative writing at Macalester. (4 credits)

ENGL 150-04

Introduction to Creative Writing

  • Days: TR
  • Meeting Time: 09:40 am-11:10 am
  • Room: THEATR 204
  • Instructor: Marlon James

Notes: *First Year Course only* Prose. Poetry. Fiction. Nonfiction. Narrative. Linear. Categories. Boundaries. Limitations. What if you want to write a prose poem? A short story that rhymes? A memoir with footnotes? An event in reverse? A thought that stretches time, or a point of view that switches bodies in the same story? Paragraph? Line? Maybe you wish to write something that you have never seen before and are not sure exists? Maybe you want to confront a memory from childhood in the voice of YA, or maybe your fan fiction suddenly came to life. What does it mean to write without boundaries? At the end of this course you will know what it means to write like a storyteller and read like a writer. As such, Intro to Creative Writing will be as much about active reading as it will be about actual writing. To become a better rule breaker first you have to know the rules. You must learn how to objectively analyze and critique a wide range of texts in your genre. How did the author make that text work? Intro to Creative Writing will be for many an introduction to the writer inside you, a person that you might be meeting for the first time. It’s about the joys and challenges of expression and learning about your abilities and yourself. It’s an introduction to the art of writing in all shapes and forms, and the craft of critiquing your work and the work of your peers. Inside out, upside down, at the end of this course you will write like you were meant to.


ENGL 150-05

Introduction to Creative Writing

  • Days: TR
  • Meeting Time: 09:40 am-11:10 am
  • Room: NEILL 217
  • Instructor: Ping Wang

Notes: The focus of this course is on the development of skills for writing poetry and short fiction through a close study of the techniques involved in these forms, analysis of model literary works, and frequent writing exercises. This course must be completed at Macalester as a PREREQUISITE for the further study of creative writing at Macalester. (4 credits)

ENGL 150-06

Introduction to Creative Writing

  • Days: TR
  • Meeting Time: 03:00 pm-04:30 pm
  • Room: MAIN 001
  • Instructor: Benjamin Voigt

Notes: What makes a story move, a poem sing, an essay say? How do writers get from blank pages to thinking, feeling readers? In this first foray in creative writing, we’ll begin to explore the huge range of things language can do, and try a few of them out ourselves. Together we’ll read like writers, write like readers, and work the muscles of our imaginations. Our concentrated study of a range of texts will introduce you to the mechanics of fiction, poetry and nonfiction—things like image, voice, character, plot and genre. Frequent writing exercises will help develop your technique, and prepare you to compose a handful of longer, more finished pieces. Discussing your classmates’ writing, you’ll also train to be good literary citizens, capable of giving valuable feedback. The course will consist, in other words, of serious play and playful work. Come prepared, and by the end, you’ll know much more about the practice of literature, your own process as a writer, and possibly yourself.

ENGL 200-01

Major Medieval and Renaissance British Writers

  • Days: MWF
  • Meeting Time: 01:10 pm-02:10 pm
  • Room: MAIN 003
  • Instructor: Penelope Geng

Notes: This survey offers both an introduction to medieval and early modern literature and an immersion in current scholarly conversations about the impact of literature on British politics, religion, manners, concepts of gender, and aesthetics. Hwæt is old, middle, and early modern English? How does lyric differ from epic and romance? What’s meter and scansion? When did drama acquire its characteristic structure? What happened to literary writing after the invention of the printing press? We’ll address these questions and many more. Rich in soil but poor in military defense, early England presented an attractive target for foreign invaders. By the tenth century, England had been conquered by the Romans (Julius Caesar: “I came, I saw, I conquered”), the Celts, the Angles, the Saxons, and the Danes. In 1066, William of Normandy emerged as the victor of the Battle of Hastings, inaugurating an era of Norman (French) rule in England. While violent and destructive, each invasion fertilized English culture with new ideas, practices, and languages. For example, the cosmopolitanism of medieval English culture is evident in Chaucer’s poems, which combined French, Italian, Latin, and Anglo-Saxon languages and poetic forms. During the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, writers including Philip Sidney, Mary Sidney Herbert (Philip’s sister), Christopher Marlowe, Edmund Spenser, Shakespeare, John Donne, Aemilia Lanyer, Elizabeth Carey, Mary Wroth, and Milton boldly experimented with English poetry, drama, and prose, publishing their works in both manuscript and print. The ascension of King James in 1603 was a watershed moment in the unification of the British Isles. An idea of a British empire, one to rival the Spanish and French, began to take shape. Growing in economic and military power, Britain expanded its boundaries during the seventeenth century. Nationalism in turn inspired fresh debate about what it meant to write, think, act, and live as a “British” subject.


ENGL 208-01

Literary Publishing

  • Days: W
  • Meeting Time: 07:00 pm-10:00 pm
  • Room: MAIN 001
  • Instructor: Anitra Budd

Notes: To the average person, the field of literary publishing can seem somewhat opaque. How does a novel go from scribbled notes to finished paperback? What goes into editing, printing, and marketing a poetry collection? This course will aim to shed light on this exciting field through a combination of readings, talks with local publishing professionals, in-class discussion, and hands-on work. The centerpiece of the course will involve working with a local writer to produce finished, bound copies of their work. In collaboration with each other and the author, students will edit the work, create publicity and marketing plans, design potential covers, and develop a sales and distribution strategy. We will also explore the history of literary and small press publishing, as well as recent technology trends in the field. This course will be helpful to students considering literary publishing as a profession, writers interested in someday having their own work published, and readers who are curious about what goes into the production of their favorite books.

ENGL 220-01

Eighteenth-Century British Literature

  • Days: MWF
  • Meeting Time: 01:10 pm-02:10 pm
  • Room: MAIN 002
  • Instructor: Taylor Schey

Notes: This course will introduce you to a wide variety of long eighteenth-century British literature, from the scabrous and scatological poetry of the second Earl of Rochester to the country house novels of Jane Austen. In the period between the Restoration of the Monarchy in 1660 and the revolutionary turn of the nineteenth century, writers not only developed a number of new literary genres and reevaluated what counts as literature; they also registered tremendous social and economic changes and grappled with many issues that continue to preoccupy us today, including nationalism, finance capitalism, and the construction of gender identities. In this course we will explore how such issues are shaped in and through the literature of this historical period, paying particular attention to the relation between literary form and the discourses of satire, sensibility, Enlightenment, and liberty. Our readings will range widely across genres, from prose fiction and lyric poetry to philosophical prose, political treatises, and periodical essays, including texts by Jane Austen, Aphra Behn, Daniel Defoe, Olaudah Equiano, Eliza Haywood, David Hume, Samuel Johnson, Lady Mary Wortley Montagu, Alexander Pope, Samuel Richardson, the second Earl of Rochester, Jonathan Swift, and William Wycherley, among others. The course fulfills one of three required courses in pre-1900 literature for English majors.

ENGL 240-01

20th Century British Literature: The Politics of Place

  • Days: MWF
  • Meeting Time: 02:20 pm-03:20 pm
  • Room: MAIN 001
  • Instructor: Amy Elkins

Notes: This semester, we will study the literature of Great Britain and Ireland from 1900 to the present. During this period, the British Isles underwent exciting and radical changes, from the fading of the empire to the emergence of new and contestatory perspectives on race, class, and gender. In this course, we will pay particular attention to how literary texts can illuminate relationships between place and the political. We will ask, for instance, how twentieth-century British and Irish texts suggest interactions between built environments (e.g. museums, estate houses, or operating rooms) and processes of social and political change (e.g. world wars, revolution, mass protest, or the rise of the welfare state). We will also ask, in a related manner, how texts illuminate natural spaces (e.g. bogs, rivers, or islands) as politicized, from providing sites of nostalgia and romance to offering metaphors for civilization and the primitive. In addition to writing several essays, students will collaborate on a PlaceMaking final project.

ENGL 277-01

Angels and Demons of the American Renaissance (1835-1880)

  • Days: TR
  • Meeting Time: 09:40 am-11:10 am
  • Room: CARN 06A
  • Instructor: James Dawes

Notes: As the United states lurched toward murderous civil war, a group of passionate, visionary, and bizarre artists set out to discover the soul of America. From 1850 to 1855, in one of the most astonishing creative convergences in literary history, the artists of what would come to be known as the American Renaissance wrote stories and poems that would enlighten, thrill, and terrify generations of readers. With aesthetic wonder and philosophical insight, they revealed both the angels and demons of human nature, inventing a uniquely American spiritual movement of unprecedented optimism at the same time that they damned it all to hell. Their works were spiritual and blasphemous, elegant and profane, beatific and pornographic, irreverently comic and heartwrenchingly sentimental. Everything that was written in America after this period would, in one way or another, have to come to terms with the brilliant and disturbing achievements of this small cluster of artists. In this course we will read texts by Ralph Waldo Emerson, Henry David Thoreau, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Herman Melville, Frederick Douglass, Walt Whitman, and Emily Dickinson. (4 credits)

ENGL 280-01

Crafts of Writing: Poetry

  • Days: M
  • Meeting Time: 07:00 pm-10:00 pm
  • Room: ARTCOM 102
  • Instructor: Edward Lee

Notes: This course will focus in a variety of ways on the development of skills for writing poetry, building on the work done in English 120. Depending on the instructor, it may approach the creative process through, for example, writing from models (traditional and contemporary), formal exercises (using both traditional and contemporary forms), or working with the poetry sequence (or other methodology selected by the instructor: see department postings for details). It will involve extensive readings and discussion of poetry in addition to regular poetry writing assignments. The course may be conducted to some extent in workshop format; the emphasis will be on continuing to develop writing skills.

Course may be taken twice for credit, so long as it is with a different instructor. (4 credits)

ENGL 281-01

Crafts of Writing: Fiction

  • Days: TR
  • Meeting Time: 01:20 pm-02:50 pm
  • Room: ARTCOM 202
  • Instructor: Marlon James

Notes: This course will focus in a variety of ways on the development of skills for writing fiction, building on the work done in English 120. Depending on the instructor, it may approach the creative process through, for example, writing from models of the short story (both classic and contemporary), working with the technical components of fiction (e.g., plot, setting, structure, characterization), or developing linked stories or longer fictions (or other methodology selected by the instructor: see department postings for details). It will involve extensive readings and discussion of fiction in addition to regular fiction writing assignments. The course may be conducted to some extent in workshop format; the emphasis will be on continuing to develop writing skills. Course may be taken twice for credit, so long as it is with a different instructor. (4 credits)

ENGL 294-01

Demonology

  • Days: MWF
  • Meeting Time: 03:30 pm-04:30 pm
  • Room: MAIN 001
  • Instructor: Penelope Geng

Notes: The story goes like this. While performing Christopher Marlowe’s Doctor Faustus—a play featuring spell-casting, necromancy, and other devilish arts—the actors noticed that “there was one devil too many amongst them.” They stopped the play; the audience panicked. Whether a true story or not (the anecdote comes down to us through a seventeenth-century source), it captures one of the “certainties” of the period: that demons, devils, witches, and other things of darkness are a part of the here and now. In this course, we explore sixteenth- and seventeenth-centuries tales of the demonic. At the same time, we examine how authors used the public’s fascination with the supernatural to explore urgent issues of the day: laws governing service, controversies regarding freewill and election, customs informing rites of hospitality and charity. Hence, just as characters strive to see beyond appearances and outward show, so we shall investigate the religious, political, and legal debates out of which the texts arise. Central to our study are the major works of early modern English literature: Marlowe’s Dr. Faustus, Webster’s The White Devil, Spenser’s The Faerie Queene, Shakespeare’s Macbeth and The Tempest, and Milton’s Paradise Lost, and lesser known texts such asThe Witch of Edmonton, The Discovery of Witchcraft, and King James’s Demonology.

ENGL 294-02

Literary Adaptation: From Fiction to Film

  • Days: MWF
  • Meeting Time: 01:10 pm-02:10 pm
  • Room: MAIN 011
  • Instructor: Peter Bognanni

Notes: *First day attendance required* The focus of this course will be on the process of adaptation. We will examine the way novels, short stories, graphic novels, and nonfiction books are transformed into films. Then we will try our hands at some adaption projects of our own. In reading and viewing fiction and film, we will engage in a comparative study of the mediums. Each art has its own ways of creating meaning and telling a story. Each has its own language. Yet, the gap between them is not an unbridgeable one. There are many similarities and comparable tropes and techniques. By studying the methods of this transformation we will come to better understand the process of adapting our own projects. Possible adaptations may include: Patricia Highsmith’s The Price of Salt to Todd Haynes’s Carol, The stories of Raymond Carver to Alejandro González Iñárritu’s Birdman, and Susan Orlean’s The Orchid Thief to Charlie Kaufman’s Adaptation.

ENGL 294-03

Mystery Narratives

  • Days: TR
  • Meeting Time: 03:00 pm-04:30 pm
  • Room: OLRI 170
  • Instructor: Matthew Burgess

Notes: In this literature and creative writing hybrid course, students will be expected to create original narrative works and write critical essays that engage with the mystery genre, which will be broadly defined to include Oedipus Rex,Chinatown, the Sherlock Holmes stories, Agatha Christie, Raymond Chandler, The Intuitionist, Megan Abbott's re-imagining of the Casey Anthony trial, episodes of The Wire and Veronica Mars, the podcast Serial, and the video game Her Story.

ENGL 294-04

Muslim Women Writers

  • Days: MWF
  • Meeting Time: 12:00 pm-01:00 pm
  • Room: CARN 404
  • Instructor: Jenna Rice

Notes: *Cross-listed with INTL 294-02 and WGSS 294-05; counts for social science general distribution* Against the swirling backdrop of political discourses about women in the Islamic world, this course will engage with feminist and postcolonial debates through literary works by Muslim women writers. The course will begin with an exploration of key debates about women’s agency and freedom, the Islamic headscarf, and Qur’anic hermeneutics. With this in mind, we will turn to the fine details of literature and poetry by Muslim women. How do these authors constitute their worlds? How are gendered subjectivities constructed? And how do the gender politics of literary texts relate to the broader political and historical contexts from which they emerge? Themes will include an introduction to Muslim poetesses and Arabic poetic genres, the rise of the novel in the Arabic speaking world, and Muslim women’s literary production outside of the Middle East: from Senegal to South Asia, and beyond.

ENGL 331-01

Nineteenth-Century British Novel

  • Days: TR
  • Meeting Time: 01:20 pm-02:50 pm
  • Room: OLRI 170
  • Instructor: Andrea Kaston Tange

Notes: Nineteenth-century Britain saw the explosion of the novel as a genre with many iterations--from gothic adventure to psychological realism, from sensational page-turner to consciousness-raising text. This advanced study of the the novel brings together issues as diverse as the rise of serial fiction, the ways empire served to underpin British culture, and the relationship between rural and urban life. Rather than being focused thematically, the course aims to explore the diversity of genres, audiences, and interests that made up the Victorian novel-reading public, considering such questions as: who was reading and how? What were the material conditions of reading and writing? For whom was reading considered important? Or dangerous? How were novels part of larger cultural conversations, such as debates about the New Woman? How did different sub-genres of the novel appeal to different populations of readers or raise different issues within cultural conversations? Novels on the reading list include: Northanger Abbey, Jane Eyre, The Mill on the Floss, Lady Audley's Secret, She, Tess of the d'Urbervilles, The Romance of a Shop, and some excerpts of Dickens's serialized fiction. We will also read other nineteenth-century documents that provide a sense of the frameworks in which these novels appeared, as well as select theoretical and scholarly materials.

ENGL 394-02

Dead White Men: Time & Truth in Era of Ideology & Biopower (Crit Thought from Descartes to Zizek)

  • Days: MWF
  • Meeting Time: 03:30 pm-04:30 pm
  • Room: NEILL 226
  • Instructor: Kiarina Kordela

Notes: *Cross-listed with GERM 337-01 and MCST 337-01*


ENGL 400-01

Special Topics in Literary Studies: The Novel and Human Rights

  • Days: TR
  • Meeting Time: 01:20 pm-02:50 pm
  • Room: MAIN 003
  • Instructor: James Dawes

Notes: Suffering deforms and destroys language, turning articulated sound into inarticulate sobs and groans. But suffering also accelerates language, calling into being not only fervent acts of supplication and prayer but also the ornate literary and cultural lament. This course examines the relationship between literature and violations of human rights. How does literature represent the shock that results from witnessing bodies opened in torture and on the battlefield? How does it represent the trauma of peacetime structural violence and domestic injury? What kinds of suffering are more difficult to narrate and why? How can we use language to alleviate suffering or to decelerate group violence? We will consider the variety of ways authors and cultural theorists have attempted to speak the unspeakable, paying particular attention to the relationships among pain, belief, and the body. Authors of interest may include Edwidge Danticat, Junot Diaz, Nathan Englander, Julia Alvarez, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, John Edgar Wideman, and others.

ENGL 406-01

Projects in Creative Writing

  • Days: TR
  • Meeting Time: 01:20 pm-02:50 pm
  • Room: NEILL 217
  • Instructor: Ping Wang

Notes: This seminar will provide a workshop environment for advanced students with clearly defined projects in poetry, fiction, creative nonfiction, drama or a combination of genres. The seminar will center initially on a group of shared readings about the creative process and then turn to the work produced by class members. Through the presentation of new and revised work, and the critiquing of work-in-progress, each student will develop a significant body of writing as well as the critical skills necessary to analyze the work of others. (4 credits)