Announcement of Classes: Fall 2004

Reading and Composition: An Exploration of Harm

English R1A

Section: 1
Instructor: Erin Khue Ninh
Time: MWF 9-10
Location: 2301 Tolman

Other Readings and Media

"Allison, D. Bastard out of Carolina

Kingston, M.H. The Woman Warrior

Morrison, T. The Bluest Eye

A course reader "


"This course will take a brief look at what it is to be a woman in American culture. We will pair readings in psychoanalysis and philosophy with the texts listed above to flesh out the questions they raise about our society: Why are these girls' coming-of-age stories scored by sexual violence, racked by the dictates of beauty, scarred by what it takes to become 'American feminine'? We will address theories of power, trauma, and ideology in forging an understanding of race, class and gender-based subject formations.

The development of analytical reading and argumentative writing skills is a central objective of this course. To this end, a large portion of class time will be devoted to individual writing exercises and group writing workshops. Students will be required to write four short analytical essays with selected rewrites, culminating in a final paper which combines autobiography and analysis. "

Reading and Composition: Exile and Literature

English R1A

Section: 2
Instructor: Marguerite Nguyen
Time: MWF 11-12
Location: 106 Wheeler

Other Readings and Media

"Brodsky, J.: selected poems

James, H.: selected stories

Lahiri, J.: selected stories from Interpreter of Maladies

Okri, B.: The Famished Road

Rushdie, S.: Midnight?s Children

Truong, M.: The Book of Salt"


In this course, we will examine the theme of exile in 20th century literature in English. Exile has become a subject of much interest, even considered by some critics to be the norm of contemporary existence. Yet its definitions vary widely, and one of the goals of this course will be to unpack what might constitute exile and how it has been represented in literature, both thematically and formally. In addition to examining the literature, we will critique the concept of exile itself and consider how the term has been used in both productive and problematic ways. Our critical approach to the texts will interlace with our own critical approaches to writing. We will compose essays gradually, beginning with questions that emerge from our initial responses to the texts and working our way toward effective writing and argumentation. A series of in-class workshops will be held to assist students with brainstorming ideas, developing theses, and drafting and revising critical essays. Students will also exchange drafts of their essays in order to offer and receive feedback. (Please note: book list is subject to change.)

Reading and Composition: Criminality and the Criminal Mind

English R1A

Section: 3
Instructor: Padma Rangarajan
Time: MWF 12-1
Location: 221 Wheeler

Other Readings and Media

"Miller, A. The Crucible

Shakespeare, W. Macbeth

Shelley, M. Frankenstein

Stevenson, R. The Strange Case of Doctor Jekyll and Mr.Hyde

Wilde,O. The Picture of Dorian Gray

Wright, R. Native Son

Course Reader: ?Rime of the Ancient Mariner?, selections from ?Paradise Lost?, selections from Discipline and Punish, ?The Murders in the Rue Morgue?, ?The Sign of Four? "


"Once I falsely hoped to meet with beings who?would love me for the excellent qualities I was capable of unfolding. I was nourished with high thoughts of honor and devotion. But now crime has degraded me beneath the meanest animal?was there no injustice in this?? Am I thought to be the only criminal, when all human kind has sinned against me??You hate me; but your abhorrence cannot equal that with which I regard myself.?--- Frankenstein

Mary Shelley?s Frankenstein raises vexing, irresolvable questions about the nature and formation of the criminal. Frankenstein?s monster commits brutal, unspeakable acts but claims his downfall is the responsibility of human society and his creator, who shun him. As the novel progresses, it becomes increasingly unclear where the locus of criminality lies, and whose acts?the monster?s or Frankenstein?s?are more inherently ?criminal?.

This class will be focused around fictional attempts to explain and explore the nature and mentality of the criminal. What possesses people to step outside the bounds of ?normality? to become criminals.? When and how are those borders contained.? One might argue, and people certainly have, that human nature is inherently criminal (replete with the supposedly sinful pleasures of lust, anger, and greed), kept in check through a rigorous system of social control. As such, we are constantly seeking to explain, and explain away, those who would step outside the boundaries of so-called normality and engage in their criminal instincts. What is criminality? Is it inherent to the human condition? A condition of birth, education, class, race, or gender? Who is responsible for the creation of a criminal? the society which creates the criminal, or the criminal himself? Where are the limits of justice, and when does lawful vengence become unlawful crime? This is an exhausutive topic, one which we cannot do full justice to in a semester. Rather, we?ll simply examine a large sampling of attempts to read the criminal mind over a large historical period.

Students will be assigned to keep a journal in reponse to assigned readings, and for a total of five papers of varying lengths (2-4 pages). There will be an emphasis on revision and editing. "

Reading and Composition: Shakespeare's Problem Plays and Romances

English R1A

Section: 4
Instructor: drienne Williams Boyarin
Time: MWF 1-2
Location: 221 Wheeler

Other Readings and Media

"Bawcutt, N., ed.: Measure for Measure

Bevington, D., ed.: Shakespeare: The Late Romances

Crewe, J., ed.: Troilus and Cressida

Marsh, N.: Shakespeare: Three Problem Plays

Snyder, S., ed.: All's Well that Ends Well"


In this course, we will read seven of Shakespeare's later plays, three of them often called the problem plays and four usually lumped together as the romances.Together, these constitute some of Shakespeare's most difficult, painful, and uncategorizable work. All betray a tragi-comic view of man, play with ideas of class and nobility and familial relationships, and deeply challenge our moral bearings by combining absurdly horrific betrayals with miraculous happy endings. We will spend about two weeks on each play, and you will write a series of close readings and short argumentative papers that will be frequently subject to peer editing and revision. You will constantly use and improve your practical writing skills.

Reading and Composition: Gods and Monsters

English R1A

Section: 6
Instructor: Sharon Goetz
Time: MWF 3-4
Location: 104 Barrows

Other Readings and Media

"Anon. (trans. Heaney): Beowulf

Delany, S.: The Einstein Intersection

Sturgeon, T.: More Than Human

plus a course reader containing the following short texts:

Anon. (trans. Bradley): Judith

Butler, O.: ""The Evening and the Morning and the Night""

Carroll, L.: ""Jabberwocky""

Chiang, T.: ""Liking What You See""

Ford, J. M.: ""Heat of Fusion""

Keats, J.: Lamia

Murphy, P.: ""His Vegetable Wife""

Padgett, L.: ""Mimsy Were the Borogoves""

Shelley, P.: ""Ozymandias""

Wolfe, G.: ""The Fifth Head of Cerberus""

Zelazny, R.: ""24 Views of Mt. Fuji, by Hokusai""



"Using texts that explore the exercise of unusual power by unusual characters, this course examines the entangled interfaces linking human and almost-human, individual and community, and identity and responsibility. Who determines what is ""human"" or ""normal""? How does ignoring or minimizing difference impact someone's relationship with society? Where and how do personal and social responsibility overlap and come into conflict? What are some ramifications of the resulting ideological compromise? These questions and others offer points of departure for class discussion as well as the written component of this course. In a series of short essays, we will address the argumentative thesis, issues of sentence and paragraph structure, use of textual evidence, and the process of revision. In addition, please be aware that active participation in class is vital to your success in this course. "

Reading and Composition: """On the Road"""

English R1A

Section: 7
Instructor: Els Andersen
Time: TTh 8-9:30
Location: 103 Wheeler

Other Readings and Media

"Strunk & White, The Elements of Style.

Twain, M. The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn.

Hemingway, E. The Sun Also Rises

Kerouac, J. On The Road.

Nabokov, V. The Annotated Lolita.

Mann, T. Death in Venice.

McCarthy, C. The Crossing.



"In this course we will study what it means to be ""on the road"" in classic American literature (and one European novella.) We will read about the roadtrips of impulsive boys, American expatriates in Europe, European emigres in America, and Beat Generation hipsters. In class discussions throughout the semester we will examine the techniques by which fiction writers explore their themes and the rather different techniques by which essay writers argue their theses. To illustrate these differences, each novel will be accompanied by an expository essay (or poem) addressing a related topic. The class is intended to develop the student's ability to read analytically and to write standard English prose. Students will write about a dozen 2-4 page papers. These will include opportunities for creative writing, journalism, and expository essays, as well as the usual ""English paper"" analyzing the text. "

Reading and Composition: The Seducer's Plots

English R1A

Section: 8
Instructor: Nicholas Nace
Time: TTh 8-9:30
Location: 204 Wheeler

Other Readings and Media

"Behn, A. Love Letters Between a Nobleman and His Sister

Donne, J. Complete English Poems

Gordon, K. The Deluxe Transitive Vampire

Kierkegaard, S. The Seducer's Diary

Richardson, S. Pamela

Wilmot, J. The Complete Poems of John Wilmot, Earl of Rochester

Wycherley, W. The Country Wife"


"While it's unlikely that anyone has ever emerged from reading a particularly absorbing poem to find his or her shirt unbuttoned, we still find it helpful to use the metaphor of seduction to talk about a certain power that literature can have over us. Poems, stories and plays are frequently said to ""draw us in"" and, if they're good, to ""touch us,"" bringing us within arm's reach of an imaginary author or narrator. Closing imaginative distance in this way forces something into our consciousness that doesn't naturally occur there (hypnotic rhymes, soothing meter, absorbing plots), and makes us forget something else that does (awareness of our self and surroundings). So while this course will explore seduction as a theme, focusing on works of amorousness and exploitation, it will more powerfully concern the antidote to seduction: paying attention. You will learn in this course how to notice the things literature doesn't want you to notice, to question the things it asks you to take for granted, and to investigate the assumptions it tries to bury. And while we will work at becoming perverse and uncooperative readers of literature in order to see how poems and stories operate on us, the most important objective of this class is to turn this new critical awareness back onto our own work and to begin paying attention to the things in our own writing we'd rather forget. In short, we will learn how not to be seduced by our own words. There will be a fair amount of talk about critical reading, but the focus will be on the mechanics of writing. Along the way, you will produce thirty-two pages of your own polished writing, much of which will be required reading for your classmates. "

Reading and Composition: Gossip

English R1A

Section: 9
Instructor: Travis Williams
Time: T/Th 9:30 a.m.-11 a.m.
Location: 2066 Valley LSB

Other Readings and Media

"Austen, J.: Emma

Austen, J.: Persuasion

Hacker, D.: Rules for Writers: A Brief Handbook

Shakespeare, W.: The Merry Wives of Windsor

Shakespeare, W.: Othello

Tydeman, W. (editor): Four Tudor Comedies

A xeroxed course reader "


This course will train you to write grammatical, concise, stylistically sophisticated, and convincing expository and analytic prose. We will develop your ability to close-read a text, develop a thesis, and marshal and analyze evidence in logically coherent arguments. Class discussions will require participation based on your careful and active reading at home. Class time will also include group work, quizzes, in-class writing, and oral presentations. Our attention will be addressed to novels and plays that represent gossip as a constructive or destructive social force. You will write four or five essays, each of which will incorporate exploratory writing, initial drafts, peer editing, and significant revision. Some of these texts are difficult and long, and all of them are challenging; you must be prepared to keep up with the reading. Constant attendance and frequent participation in class are required.

Reading and Composition: Romantic Comedy: Misrecognition

English R1A

Section: 10
Instructor: Leslie Walton
Time: TTh 11-12:30
Location: 155 Barrows

Other Readings and Media

"Austen, J: Persuasion Crews, F.: The Random House Handbook Shakespeare, W: Twelfth Night Trollope, A: Ayala?s Angel

Film List:

Clueless (Heckerling, 1995)

Holiday (Cukor, 1938)

Persuasion (Michell, 1995)

Some Kind of Wonderful (Deutch, 1987)

Sylvia Scarlett (Cukor, 1936)

Twelfth Night (Nunn, 1996) "


"This course will investigate a certain strain of romantic comedy predicated on the hero?s (or heroine?s) inability to recognize his (or her) ideal partner. In addition to considering the history of romantic comedy more broadly, we?ll study how these particular comedies describe objects of desire, and how sometimes the most desirable partners are rendered romantically and erotically ?illegible? (through processes as diverse as gender confusion, the incest taboo, and the failure to conform to ideals of beauty).

Students will write a series of progressively longer essays, beginning with a diagnostic essay and culminating in a five-page paper. All essays, save the diagnostic, will involve the writing of drafts; three papers will require graded revisions. Though our primary foci (in addition to the course?s thematic concerns) will be argumentation, critical thinking, and essay organization, we will also undergo a semester long grammar and style review, conducted through in-class lessons and quizzes. "

Reading and Composition: Sympathy and The Social Contract

English R1A

Section: 11
Instructor: D. Rae Greiner
Time: Tuesday/Thursday 12:30-2:00
Location: 103 Wheeler

Other Readings and Media

"Bront?, E. Wuthering Heights

Conrad, J. The Nigger of the ?Narcissus?: A Tale of the Sea

Hacker, D. A Writer?s Reference

Hardy, T. Tess of the D?Urbervilles

Sontag, S. Regarding the Pain of Others

Course Reader, available at University Copy (2425 Channing Way)

Contains theoretical essays, short stories and poems, as well as material pertaining directly to rhetorical strategies, organizational and argumentative strategies, and examples of expository writing. "


In this course, we will be using a wide variety of pre-Romantic, Romantic, Victorian and contemporary texts in order to examine the changing function of rhetorical strategies across disciplines and across centuries. In particular, we will be asking questions about the role of ?fellow-feeling,? or sympathy, in the attempt to build a free and democratic society. We will pay close attention to the ways in which language and narrative operate, examining not only what kind of stories get told but how they are told. We will notice, for example, that in order for one fictional character to ?sympathize? with another (and in order for readers to sympathize with characters), narratives must enact certain kinds of violence on their subjects?we seem to be able to ?feel? the most for others only when those others are made to suffer?and that this violence produces ?subjects in distress.? These subjects are sometimes, and quite literally, ?monstrous,? and are often broken, mutilated, damaged, or brutalized in some way . . . and we want to know why! Finally, we will turn from late 18th century discussions of sympathy?s social role to more modern texts to consider the ways in which sympathy is deployed in our own cultural and historical moment. Because this class is reading and writing intensive, you will be asked to do many different kinds of writing, and will be required to do full revision of two major assignments. In addition, you will be required to keep up with the reading and take reading quizzes on a daily basis.

Reading and Composition: TBA

English R1A

Section: 12
Instructor: Snehal Shingavi
Time: Tu/Th 2-3:30
Location: 103 Wheeler Hall


No course description is available at this time.

Reading and Composition: Love Stories

English R1A

Section: 13
Instructor: Vlasta Vranje
Time: TTh 3:30-5
Location: 123 Wheeler

Other Readings and Media

"Baldwin, J., Giovanni's Room

Congreve, W., Love for Love

Turgenev, I., First Love

The Course Reader will be a compilation of various poems, short stories, fairy tales, and essays.



Edward Scissorhands "


"This course fulfills the first portion of the undergraduate reading and composition requirement, and as such, it aims to strengthen students� basic writing skills and teach them how to write increasingly complex expository and argumentative essays. The course is, therefore, designed to be writing-intensive rather than reading-intensive.

In addition to completing all writing assignments, students will be expected to come to class regularly and prepared to discuss the readings. The texts we will read closely and write about critically, as well as the movies we will watch, come from a variety of periods and genres and can be (more or less loosely) characterized as �love stories.� In order to give our discussions and writing projects as precise a focus as possible, we will examine what elements of these stories make them �timeless� and how each genre/period engages with representations of love established or conventionalized by other genres/periods. "

Reading and Composition: Modernism and the Harlem Renaissance

English R1A

Section: 14
Instructor: Paul Stasi
Time: T Th 3:30 - 5:00
Location: 283 Dwinelle

Other Readings and Media

"Joyce, J.: Dubliners

Locke, A.: The New Negro

Toomer, J.: Cane

Johnson, J. W.: Autobiography of an Ex-Colored Man

Course Reader including (at least) Zora Neale Hurston, T.S. Eliot, William Carlos Williams, Nella Larsen. "


"In this course we will think about the relationship between the ""aesthetic"" and the ""political"" by reading works from two literary formations of the 1920s and 30s that are often taken to embody the two sides of this divide -- modernism, read most often for its purely aesthetic qualities, and the Harlem Renaissance, typically seen in terms of its political commitments. Our goal will be to understand what commonalities obtain between these seemingly distinct bodies of work so that we can more accurately assess where they diverge. As with any good comparison, we will not attempt to disconnect the Harlem Renaissance from its politics nor to argue that modernism is focused primarily on racial equality, but rather to see how these two bodies of work challenge each other and allow for new ways of thinking about the complicated interaction between art and society.

Students will be required to write 5 essays (not including one in-class, ungraded diagnostic essay); three of them will be 3 pages and the last two will be 5. Each student will also be required to submit one rough draft and one revision on an essay of his/her choosing; however I will accept revisions of any paper one week after I?ve handed it back and am happy to look over drafts throughout the semester. There will also be a number of homework assignments -- largely responses to the reading -- and some in-class writing. Vigorous participation and attendance is a must. "

Reading and Composition: Melodrama and Morality

English R1B

Section: 1
Instructor: Misa Oyama
Time: MWF 10-11
Location: 221 Wheeler

Other Readings and Media

"Paul Auster: The Book of Illusions

Graham Greene: The Quiet American

Grace Metalious: Peyton Place

Susan Sontag: Regarding the Pain of Others

Course reader (essays and short stories)

Frederick C. Crews: The Random House Handbook (recommended)


Alan Ball: Six Feet Under (selections)

Michael Epstein: American Masters - None Without Sin

Justin Lin: Better Luck Tomorrow

Errol Morris: The Fog of War

Phillip Noyce: The Quiet American

Nicholas Ray: Bigger Than Life

Stephen Sondheim: Sweeney Todd "


"Melodrama is often seen as an old-fashioned or simplistic genre, because it appeals to emotions rather than reason and dramatizes the battle between good and evil. But these characteristics also make melodrama a popular way of dealing with complex problems; melodrama gives its audience clarity in a morally ambiguous world. We will examine the ways that people (from novelists and filmmakers to journalists and politicians) use melodrama to address questions about sexuality, class, race, and nationhood.

Students will begin the course by writing short close readings of small moments in the texts, and progress to longer essays which link these close readings together to form a larger argument. Through these assignments (several of which will be rewritten), students will sharpen two skills: looking closely at evidence and using that evidence to make a claim that matters to them. Additional requirements include three reading quizzes and an oral presentation on one of the works.

Films will be screened outside of class in the late afternoon or evening; students who cannot make the screening can see the films on their own at the Media Center in Moffitt. Texts may be subject to change; please come to the first class before purchasing any books. "

Reading and Composition: Realisms and Aesthetic Experience

English R1B

Section: 2
Instructor: Jennifer Scappettone
Time: MWF 1-2
Location: 80 Barrows

Other Readings and Media

"Chesnutt, C. selections from The Conjure Woman

Harris, J.C. selections from Nights with Uncle Remus

Gilman, C.P. The Yellow Wallpaper

James, H. selections from The American Scene

Toomer, J. Cane

Dos Passos, J. The 42nd Parallel

Darwish, M. Memory for Forgetfulness

Joseph W. Williams, Style: Ten Lessons in Clarity & Grace, 5th edition

A course reader (to be printed by Odin Readers on Center St. and Oxford) containing: this syllabus, poems by Walt Whitman, Gertrude Stein, Hart Crane, George Oppen, Juliana Spahr strategies for close reading, peer editing instructions, paper guidelines, & common errors, as well as critical and poetic works

Recommended texts: John Berger, J. Ways of Seeing Queneau, R. Exercises in Style "


"In this course we will experiment with reading against traditional notions of ?realism? in order both to grasp the central concerns of realist literature composed over the turn of the 20th century and to broaden our analytical horizons. This will mean reading against tendencies with which you may be most comfortable, which view literary characters and narrative voices as the driving forces of literary works and as the repositories of reliable information and/or unencumbered choice . We will approach a number of works which stress the role of external forces of circumstance?historical, economic, geographical, racial, sexual, cultural?in steering experience. We will pay special attention to our authors? obsessions with the shaping power of space and place in an urbanizing landscape. And because many of these writers, surrounded by an unprecedented onslaught of images, are obsessed with the vagaries of appearance, we will watch as their texts negotiate the difference between experience regarded as aesthetic and experience of an unmediated ?actuality.? We will try to think about what spaces and images do to or for subjects in addition to the more familiar focus on what subjects do within or with them. We will also discuss whether, and how, realist ?documentary? modes and ?aesthetic? modes of writing diverge or dovetail.

The course?s theme resonates with our focus on research and composition. As we learn to write, we realize how profoundly un?realistic,? how artful, are our practices of containing and sorting the commotion of our surroundings. By viewing channels of ?information? with a critical eye, we will learn to critique and hone our own modes of perception and its reportage. We will try our collective hand at writing on a number of genres. Documenting the development of our own ideas, we will try to responsibly address those aspects of circumstance which our writing crops or foregrounds, and thus to become more aware and dialectically rigorous thinkers. We will develop two research papers over the course of the semester, moving from drafts through revisions to polished work. "

Reading and Composition: TBA

English R1B

Section: 3
Instructor: Katie Simon
Time: MWF 3-4
Location: 222 Wheeler


No course description is available at this time.

Reading and Composition: Evolution & Fiction: Generic, Social and Personal Adaptation

English R1B

Section: 4
Instructor: Jhoanna Infante
Time: MWF 3-4
Location: 78 Barrows

Other Readings and Media

"Darwin, C.: On the Origin of the Species; Descent of Man, and Selection in Relation to Sex.

Paley, W.: Natural Theology.

Hardy, T.: Tess of the D'Urbervilles; selected poetry and prefaces.

Hopkins, G.: selected poetry.

Stoker, B.: Dracula.

Jonz, S.: Adaptation (film). "


"In this course, we will engage with the concept of ""adaptation"" as it relates to literary genre, social change, Darwin's theory of evolution, and your own approach to writing. You will learn how to be an observant reader, as well as how to be an ""adaptive,"" versatile writer who can respond to the specific requirements of literary analysis and scholarly research. You will be required to write two research papers that relate to the subject matter of the course and also reflect your independent research. Each student will be asked to write a report on an additional relevant text that reflects his/her own interest in the material.

The subject matter of the course will be the relationship between Darwinian evolutionary theory and late Victorian fiction. We will read selections from Charles Darwin's On the Origin of the Species and Descent of Man and will use close reading techniques to uncover the ""literary"" features of these scientific writings. We will establish a sense of short story and novel reading in the mid-nineteenth century by considering serial publication in magazines, three-volume publication, and subscription libraries. Among other features of the texts, we will discuss narrative voice, audience, and the relationship between society/culture and these writers. How can we locate cultural assumptions in an author's use of language? How can we turn an eye toward our own writing, and use this analysis productively toward second and third drafts? We will also look at the novel as a ""adaptive"" form of literature contrasted to the ""higher"" form of poetry, particularly in its associations with the market, women readers and authors, and public taste. Reading will include two novels, a few poems, and few short stories; in the last week of the course, we will watch the film Adaptation to extend our discussion of adapting genres. "

Reading and Composition: Wisdom Literature

English R1B

Section: 5
Instructor: Mark Allison
Time: TTh 8-9:30
Location: 109 Wheeler

Other Readings and Media

"Course Reader

Coleridge, S.T. and W. Wordsworth The Lyrical Ballads

Eliot, G. Adam Bede

Hacker, D. Rules for Writers

Hong Kingston, M. The Fifth Book of Peace

Johnson, S. Rasselas


Crews, F. The Random House Handbook 6th edition. "


"In this course we will read a variety of works that have been?or might be?construed as offering ?wisdom? to their readers. We will examine sacred texts from several religious traditions, classical forms of wisdom writing (fables, aphorisms, dialogues), and, finally, modern and contemporary literary works written in a variety of genres.

We will want to consider several interrelated questions in our discussions: How does wisdom differ from other kinds of information? Is wisdom a single entity, or a descriptive term that is applied indiscriminately to many discrete kinds of learning? Should we value wisdom more (or, perhaps, less) than other kinds of knowledge? Finally, what is the relationship of wisdom writing to the category of ?literature? itself? Are all literary works examples of wisdom literature? If not, than what do we learn by reading a literary text? If so, why do teachers of literature?including this one?protest when you try to state what the ?message? of a literary work is?

The assignments for this course are designed to improve your writing and research skills. To that end, there will be several substantial papers, as well as exercises in pre-writing, revision, and library research. "

Reading and Composition: Writing Communities and Reading Constituencies: Filipino American Literature

English R1B

Section: 6
Instructor: Jean Gier
Time: TTH 8-9:30
Location: 221 Wheeler

Other Readings and Media

"Blake, W. William Blake: Selected Poetry.

Chekhov, A. The Portable Chekhov.

Dickens, C. The Mystery of Edwin Drood.

Frost, R. The Poetry of Robert Frost.

Shakespeare, William. Shakespeare?s Sonnets.

Williams, J. Style: Towards Clarity and Grace.

A course reader of primary and secondary sources will also be provided.

Required Books:

Carlos Bulos: America is in the Heart

Barbara J. Pulmano Reyes: Gravities of Center

Brian Ascalon Roley: American Son

Nick Carbo, ed.: Pinoy Poetics

Films (in-class):

Penee Bender, Joshua Brown, and Andrea Ades Vasquez, Savage Acts, Wars, Fairs & Empire

Curtis Choi, Fall of the I-Hotel

Gene Cajayon and John Manal Castro, The Debut

Course Reader "


"This course examines selected texts in Filipino literature in English, with emphasis on how writing communities and reading constituencies are developed through media (newspapers, magazines, film) for a minority literature. We focus on how Filipinos in the United States have utilized newspapers and magazines for publication during the early 20th century, when it was difficult or almost impossible to publish in the mainstream press. Many of the texts that we will read during the first half of the class will be from periodicals. We will begin by looking at the historical (colonial) contexts of Filipino writing in the Philippines, at the cultural transitions of Filipino writers who migrated to the United States in the early 20th century, and how they created writing communities and reading constituencies. We will read documents -- essays, speeches, letters -- of the Philippine Independence movement published in the United States, in relation to texts written by American authors � for example, Mark Twain -- involved in the Anti-Imperialist movement. These early documents form the framework for a literature that expresses a strong transnational awareness, and a concern for advocacy and local community action. Close reading and discussion of stories, essays, speeches and reportage will allow us to discuss and write about what makes an essay or speech convincing, and a short story or novel meaningful within various personal and social contexts. There will be equal emphasis in this class on both critical reading and essay writing.

The World Wide Web is providing new venues and reading constituencies for minority writers that is unprecedented. We will become part of this online community in our class ""weblog,"" (online journal), where we can ask questions and discuss the assigned texts. You are encouraged to browse authors' websites and blogs, and Filipino American writers will also be invited to ""visit"" online and participate in our discussions. . "

Reading and Composition: Detective Fiction

English R1B

Section: 7
Instructor: Peter Goodwin
Time: T/Th, 9:30-11:00 a.m.
Location: 204 Wheeler

Other Readings and Media

"Poe, Edgar Allan: ?The Murders in the Rue Morgue? and other stories (course reader)

Coyle, Arthur Conan: ?The Hound of the Baskervilles? (course reader)

Christie, Agatha: Murder on the Orient Express

Mosley, Walter: Devil in a Blue Dress

Morrison, Toni: Song of Solomon

Auster, Paul: City of Glass




Mulholland Drive "


"Whodunnit? Who cares? This course about detective fiction will pose more complex questions: What is the relationship between the detected and detective? Between detection and desire? Between criminal and police? What constitutes moral culpability? How do these texts draw the line between public and private? What is it that so irresistably draws ordinary people into ?the scene of the crime?? Beginning with Edgar Allan Poe, commonly acknowledged as the father of modern detective fiction, we will be analyzing a wide variety of detective stories, novels, and films. In essays, revisions, and other short writing assignments, students will be encouraged to explore the social, cultural, and personal dimensions of a genre that is often regarded as light entertainment.

We will also be viewing three films. Students will have the option of watching them during scheduled class screenings or on their own.

This course is intended to develop students? expertise in writing the college research paper. In addition to writing and revising at least one essay about the assigned fictional texts, students will learn how to conduct and present research on a related topic of their own design. "

Reading and Composition: Out of the One, Many: Ethnicity in American Literature Before Ethnic Literature

English R1B

Section: 8
Instructor: L. von Morze
Time: TuTh 11-12:30
Location: 425 Latimer

Other Readings and Media

"Equiano, O: Interesting Narrative

Child, L. M.: Hobomok

Melville, H.: Typee

Cooper, J. F.: The Pioneers

Ridge, J. R.: Joaquin Murieta

Asbury, H.: Gangs of New York

Xeroxed reader "


"1953 marked the first appearance of the word ?ethnicity?; three years later, the U.S. officially abandoned e pluribus unum as its national motto. These minor events were mirrored by a larger scholarly recognition that the history of American society could not continue to be told in the same way, as a tale of progress toward inclusion, or (in turn) of the many merging into one political culture. Our goal in this course will be not only to question the history implied in the phrase e pluribus unum by pointing to persistent exclusions, but to see if we might invert the formula: ""out of one, many."" We will look at a series of (mostly short) texts which represent American ethnicities in a period when no stable concept of ethnicity was available, and when representations of other societies tended to contribute to the imagining of forms of political life, taking writers through and beyond the unifying experiment of the American Constitution. Can ethnic identification--supposedly involuntary or inherited--actually be a model for defining a people and its political will? Has an emphasis on the assimilation of ethnic groups blinded us to the ways the organization of ethnicities may relate to political transformations? How do Anglo-American writers turn to other ethnic groups for models of collective action or of social unity? How do the reports of American explorers, the seafaring of amateur anthropologists, and the rediscovery/invention of ""New"" Worlds and ""primitive"" societies contribute to this project of rethinking politics? How are ethnic idioms represented?

Although students will be required to write several short responses and one long paper on these texts, they will have the option of writing a final research paper on variations of these themes in the twentieth century and beyond. They will be encouraged to shape their project to a discipline of their choosing--whether history, literature, film, sociology, or anthropology--but also to remember that ethnicity is relational and political. While the first premise of this course is that writing about others does not simply reflect one's own ideological assumptions, the second is that writing about one group?s ""experience"" as though it inhabited a vacuum is no less problematic. This final paper will be evaluated according to the strength of research and argument represented in it, as well as by the effort put into draft revisions. "

Reading and Composition: Truth, Lie, and Narration in the Novel and Film

English R1B

Section: 9
Instructor: Chris Eagle
Time: T/Th, 12:30 ? 2:00
Location: 204 Wheeler

Other Readings and Media

"Wilde, O. The Importance of Being Earnest, The Decay of Lying, The Critic as Artist

Woolf, V. To the Lighthouse

Plato. The Republic

Joseph Williams. Style: 7 Lessons Towards Clarity and Grace

Course Reader. Selections from Nietzsche, Heidegger, Descartes "


"This course approaches literary works from a philosophical standpoint, taking up certain longstanding philosophical debates about the nature of Truth, and applying those debates to works of literature. We will spend the first few weeks familiarizing ourselves with some of these debates through brief selected readings in the history of philosophy by Plato, Descartes, and Nietzsche. Put simply, we will discuss whether truth is an objective (and universal) part of our external world, or instead, a set of subjective (or pluralistic) perspectives on reality. We will then apply these debates to works by Oscar Wilde and Virginia Woolf. In the case of Wilde, I expect we will explore what it means for Wilde to write essays in the form of dialogues, a conversational form which embraces a multiplicity of perspectives. Likewise, I hope we will appreciate the philosophy behind Woolf?s narrative techniques (i.e. alternating perspectives, fluid points-of-view) and how these techniques reflect her own sense of ""truth."" In the last few weeks of the semester, we will take up these same issues in films, focusing on examples of what is often called ""unreliable narration"" (a term for narratives that in some sense ""lie"" to us). We will look at three canonically ""unreliable"" films: Kurosawa?s Rashomon, Hitchcock?s Stage Fright, and Siodmak?s The Killers.

Our method throughout will be a close in-class analysis of the novels, dialogues, and films. Our focus will be on the development of your close-reading skills as well as an improvement in your writing that builds upon your experience in 1A. Thus, a significant portion of in-class time will also be spent ""workshopping"" each other?s writing. There will also be exercises assigned to develop your research skills for the final paper. "

Reading and Composition: Canonical and African-American Modernism

English R1B

Section: 10
Instructor: Charles Sumner
Time: TTH 3:30-5
Location: 204 Wheeler

Other Readings and Media

The Norton Anthology of Modern Poetry, The Sun Also Rises (Hemingway, E.), Invisible Man (Ellison, R.), Passing (Larsen, N.), The Passion (Winterson, J.)


In this class we will explore some of the unique challenges posed by modernist literature. Then we will explore the relationship between canonical modernism and African-American literature of the first half of the twentieth century. Further, we will try to decide to what degree certain postmodernist texts inherit a modernist aesthetic and to what degree these texts strike out in new and original directions. In the process, we will reflect on how we might assign meaning to these new developments.

Reading and Composition: The Postmodern and Beyond

English R1B

Section: 11
Instructor: Franklin Melendez
Time: TT 3:30-5
Location: 243 Dwinelle

Other Readings and Media

"Nabokov, Vladimir. Lolita

Pynchon, Thomas. The Crying of Lot 49

DeLillo, Don. White Noise

Easton Ellis, Bret. American Psycho


Lynch, David. Blue Velvet (1986)

Fincher, David. Fight Club (1999)

Inarritu, Alejandro Gonzales. Amores Perros (2001)

Excerpts from:

Twin Peaks

Buffy the Vampire Slayer [an error occurred while processing this directive] "


"This course is designed to introduce the complex problem of the postmodern. Despite the frequent deployment of this term, its definition remains vague, ranging from the fuzzy to the completely opaque. The central questions driving the course will revolve around competing models for defining the postmodern. These questions include: how do we differentiate the modern from the postmodern? Can we define postmodernity as a clearly demarcated historical period, or are its boundaries more fluid? Can we identify something like a postmodern style? Can we trace a genealogy of the postmodern? What are its material roots? In particular, what is its relationship to the rise of mass culture, and specific media such as film, television, video and digital technologies? How does postmodernity affect major categories of identity formation such as gender, class and race? As we gain a fuller understanding of the problems surrounding the field, we will also try to identify some of the underlying anxieties of these major accounts, particularly with regard to the consumer, the proliferation of the mass-produced, spectacle, and globalization. Ultimately, we will want to ask what it would mean to move beyond the postmodern?

We will attempt to explore these questions mainly through the primary literary texts. However, I will also introduce additional materials from other disciplines which might illuminate the problem and allow us to refine our analytic skills through various disciplines. Most of the supplemental material will be drawn from the visual arts, such as Surrealism, Dada and Pop Art. We will also try to engage some works of television and music video. The aim here is to get a sense of the interdisciplinary nature of the phenomenon, and see how it emerges differently according to particular media.

The main aim of this course is to continue developing and polishing the writing/ critical thinking skills obtained in 1A. By engaging the primary works of the class, we will continue focusing on critical thinking skills, close reading/ analysis, argumentation and organization. In addition to our formal essays, we will have weekly writing assignments, as well as substantial revisions which will allow students to work with feedback. The semester will culminate in a final research paper which will require the use of secondary sources in preparation for upper division level work. "