Announcement of Classes: Fall 2012

The Announcement of Classes is available one week before Tele-Bears begins every semester. Creative Writing and (for fall) Honors Course applications are available at the same time in the racks outside of 322 Wheeler Hall.


Reading & Composition: Snobbery

English R1A

Section: 1
Instructor: Ling, Jessica
Time: MWF 9-10
Location: 222 Wheeler


Book List

Howells, William Dean: The Rise of Silas Lapham; Smith, Zadie: On Beauty;

Recommended: Franzen, Jonathan : The Corrections; Wharton, Edith: The House of Mirth

Other Readings and Media

Course reader includes: selections from The Book of Snobs and Vanity Fair, William Makepeace Thackeray. "Silly Novels by Lady Novelists," George Eliot. "Am I Snob?," Virginia Woolf. "A Portrait of the Hipster," Anatole Broyard. "Positions" from What Was the Hipster? A Sociological Investigation, "What Was the Hipster?" from New York Magazine, Mark Grief. "On Douchebags," Robert Moor. Selections from Distinction, Pierre Bourdieu. Selections from Oedipus Unbound, René Girard. Selected articles on Oprah/Franzen controversy. 

MLA Handbook for Writers of Research Papers suggested, but not required.

Description

We know a snob when we see one, though snobbery itself is curiously hard to define. Is it a process of making aesthetic distinctions or social ones? Or both? How do the choices we make every day – reading the right books, riding the right bike, eating with the right fork, measuring a hem – define the company we keep? And if we label someone else a snob, are we ourselves snobs? Thackeray writes: “You must not judge hastily or vulgarly of Snobs: to do so shows that you yourself are a Snob. I myself have been taken for one.” Tracing the figure of the snob from Victorian London to Williamsburg (circa 2004), from third wave coffee shops to the ivory tower, we’ll watch how the snob precariously positions himself in a field of judgment while maintaining a cautious sense of our own snobbery. We’ll also consider the novel’s place in training its readers to be good snobs. How does the novel correlate social positions with aesthetic taste? Is narration always an act of snobbery? And how does the novel position itself as an object of taste – what happens when bad literature aspires to be good?

This class seeks to hone writing skills, with particular attention to exposition and argument. In addition to weekly readings, a series of short essays (2-4 pages) will be assigned, beginning with a diagnostic. We’ll refine these essays through a combination of workshops and individual conferences. 


Reading & Composition: Love Songs

English R1A

Section: 2
Instructor: Perry, R. D.
Time: MWF 10-11
Location: 222 Wheeler


Book List

Beghtol, L. D.: The Magnetic Field’s 69 Love Songs: A Field Guide; Chaucer, Geoffrey: Dream Visions and Other Poems; Morrison, Toni: Beloved; Plato: Symposium; Shakespeare, William: Twelfth Night, or What You Will; The Magnetic Fields: 69 Love Songs

Other Readings and Media

Please note that The Magnetic Fields' work is in fact a CD box set.  If you choose to acquire it as an MP3, that is fine.  Just make sure to get the complete 3-disc album.

Additional short readings on b-space from the Bible, St. Augustine, Boethius, Richard Roos, John Donne, John Keats, and others.

Description

This course takes as its object of study works of art that concern themselves with the nature of  “love.”  Arguably the most popular and ubiquitous of aesthetic productions, what we will broadly be calling Love Songs are now perhaps most closely associated with lyric poetry.  However, the feeling that we call “love” has a rich history with a wide variety of formal and semantic variation.  Throughout this course, we will look at different historical moments and ask of each what is meant by the term “love” and what kinds of strategies of representation seemed most suitable to it.  We will engage with the term both diachronically, across time periods, and synchronically, attending to the variations within each period.  We will wonder, for instance, what Plato’s “eros” has to do with “agape,” as well as what connection these terms have to either Chaucer’s notion of “love” or Toni Morrison’s.

So, “love” is the subject of our course, but not the work of the course.  The purpose of R1A is to focus on your writing.  We will spend a lot of time in class talking about how you would write on this material, from working on the construction of sentences and paragraphs to the formulation of thesis statements and how to best argue them.  You will write 4 different papers over the course of the semester, revising most of them at least once.


Reading & Composition: The Miniature

English R1A

Section: 3
Instructor: Ty, Michelle
Time: MWF 10-11
Location: 225 Wheeler


Book List

Stein, Gertrude: Selected Writings of Gertrude Stein; Walser: Microscripts

Description

First and foremost, this course will be about writing.  A propos of the seminar’s theme, we will work on and revise mostly small pieces, while reading and thinking about miniatures of all kinds.

This course about the miniature will begin big, with an epic, and end with pieces of literature so small, you can hold them, entire, in the palm of your hand.   Throughout the semester, we will explore what it means to attend to the minute—and how such attention might also correspond to various ways of seeing the world.  We will spend time considering how the microscopic gaze might be distinguished from the kind of view offered by the (social and political) microcosm, and will think about how the scale of a representation can invite certain modes of interpretation, along with various assumptions about a work’s value, potency, charm, or exemplarity.

In the latter part of the course, we will consider how “smallness” has become something of a pseudo-concept in aesthetics, often opposed to the sublimely great, and associated with a feminized notion of beauty.  And we will ask how miniature genres, like the anecdote, might function, or not function, as a kind of historical writing.  

Requirements for the course include the following:

·      One two-page response paper at the semester’s beginning;

·      Three three-page papers, which will be revised and peer-reviewed

·      Weekly responses on the online forum 

·      An in-class presentation, relevant to the selected week’s readings, which will become the basis for a 4-page paper, due at the semester’s end

Book/Film List:

The Odyssey (Selections); Austen, Emma; Aesop, Fables; Robert Walser, Microscripts; Kafka, Parables & Paradoxes; Gertrude Stein, Selected Writings, and “How to Write” (excerpts); Lichtenberg, The Wastebooks; films by Marie Menken and Maya Deren; animated shorts by Brad Neeley

Available as a course reader: 

Woolf, “Solid Objects” and “Kew Gardens”; Andreas Huyssen, “The Modernist Miniature”; Félix Fénéon, Illustrated Three-line Novels; Poe, “The Black Cat”; Boxes, by Joseph Cornell

Also selections from the following: Susan Stewart, On Longing; Walter Benjamin, the Arcades Project and “The Storyteller”; Pascal’s Pensées; Hooke’s Micrographia; La Rochefoucauld, Maxims; Swift, Gulliver’s Travels; Cervantes, “Exemplary Tales”; Nietzsche’s The Gay Science; Anne Carson, Short Talks; Kant, Critique of the Power of Judgment; The New Testament; Burke, A Philosophical Enquiry into the Origin of our Ideas of the Sublime and Beautiful.

 


Reading & Composition: Music and Modernism

English R1A

Section: 4
Instructor: Le, Serena
Time: MWF 11-12
Location: 222 Wheeler


Book List

Eliot, T.: Collected Poems: 1909-1962; Forster, H.: Howards End; Hopkins, G.: The Major Works; Joyce, J.: Poems and Shorter Writings; Pound, E.: The Pisan Cantos; Stein, G.: Selected Writings of Gertrude Stein; Stevens, W.: The Collected Poems; Yeats, W.: The Collected Poems of W. B. Yeats;

Recommended: Pound, E.: ABC of Reading

Other Readings and Media

A course reader containing stories by Woolf and Joyce, poems by Thomas Hardy and Ezra Pound, essays by Pound, Eliot, Stevens, and other modernist thinkers, and excerpts from Joyce’s Ulysses.

Listenings (including works of Schoenberg, Debussy, Ravel, Stravinsky, and above-mentioned operas) available through library databases and other online resources.

Description

“Poets who will not study music are defective.” So wrote Ezra Pound in 1917, as World War I raged in Europe and literary modernism gained momentum both alongside, and in response. Pound may have been among the bluntest of his contemporaries, but he was far from alone in his belief. As this course will show, deep convictions about the vitality of music to the craft of the written word are as prevalent in modernist literature as considerations of the word itself. Over the course of the semester, we will discuss music and modernism in tandem, seeking both to identify the nature of convictions held, and to begin the work of determining how they are challenged or carried out. A background in music theory, history, or performance is by no means necessary, though students should be prepared to listen with interest and attention to some of the period’s most distinctive musical works.

Written assignments for this course will consist of a series of short essays, with considerable room for, and emphasis on, revision. Students should expect to develop practical fluency in critical writing, and to hone skills in exposition and argumentation.


Reading & Composition: What Have I Done ?

English R1A

Section: 5
Instructor: Creasy, CFS
Time: MWF 12-1
Location: 222 Wheeler


Book List

Beckett, Samuel: Three Novels: Molloy, Malone Dies, The Unnamable; Ford, Ford Madox: The Good Soldier; Freud, Sigmund: Dora: An Analysis of a Case of Hysteria; Grene, David: Sophocles I: Oedipus The King, Oedipus at Colonus, Antigone; Poe, Edgar Allan: The Portable Edgar Allan Poe; Stevenson, Robert Louis: Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde and Other Tales

Other Readings and Media

A film screening of either Michelangelo Antonioni’s The Passenger or Blow-up.

An online course reader with theoretical excerpts that may include G.W.F. Hegel, Karl Marx, Sigmund Freud, Walter Benjamin, Jacques Lacan, and Carlo Ginzburg.

Description

This course will examine the problematic interactions between experience, action, and knowledge. Focusing primarily on the second half of the 19th and the first half of the 20th century, we will read mostly narrative literary works that address a problem of knowledge and self-knowledge that seems to hinge, paradoxically, on a moment of error. To the casual observer, these works might be taken to be so many detective stories. Nothing is less certain. Thus, we will flirt mercilessly with that generic convention, as well as the not unrelated convention of the tragic, but we will refuse to allow ourselves to mistake either for truth, since it is the truth we seek. The relationship between literature and other discourses presumably concerned with truth (e.g. philosophy and something like science) also will be at stake, but above all we will address the ways in which these texts thematize and formalize problems of the relationship between knowledge, self-knowledge, action, and error—how they are about these problems, and how they create these problems for us as we confront them.

Beyond the intrinsic interest of these works, our readings will open onto the underlying pragmatic goal of this course, which is to facilitate the development of your critical reflection and writing skills. We will use the questions that this material poses of us, as well as those we pose of it, to construct persuasive and cogent arguments, writing progressively larger essays with progressively more sophisticated conceptual substance. The semester will begin with a short diagnostic essay, followed by three papers of increasing length. A peer review process will help you as you revise at least two of these papers. In all, you will produce at least thirty-two pages of writing over the semester—including drafts and revisions.


Reading & Composition: (Re)presenting the Past

English R1A

Section: 6
Instructor: Dumont, Alex
Time: MWF 12-1
Location: 225 Wheeler


Book List

Bechdel, Alison: Fun Home: A Family Tragicomic; James, Henry: The Turn of the Screw; Melville, Herman: Billy Budd and Other Stories; Sebald, W.G.: Austerlitz

Other Readings and Media

- A course reader, which will include: Nathaniel Hawthorne's, "My Kinsman, Major Molineux", selections from Charles Lyell's Principles of Geology, selections from Charles Darwin's, On the Origin of Species, selected Victorian ghost stories, and selected criticism on The Turn of the Screw, as well as a variety of other short critical and theoretical texts.

- The Innocents (dir. Jack Clayton), a film to be screened in class.

Description

This course will ask a variety of questions about the interaction of the past and the present in literature, beginning with one that may (at first) seem simple:  What exactly do we mean by “the past”?  This question, as we will see, has many answers.  Personal experience, history, inheritance, memory and tradition will all be considered.  The past, as we will see, can be nurturing and haunting, inspiring and oppressive, far out of reach and all too close.  Finally, we will ask, in what ways does art always contend with the past?  In what ways is it always separated from it?

The connection between past and present is not just something about which we read and write, but also part of how our own reading and writing work.  Texts and ideas are engaged in a conversation with earlier texts and ideas, and the work we will do in this class is no exception.  As you develop your abilities in reading, writing, and analysis, you will hopefully begin to think about your work as part of this larger conversation.  To this end, we will spend substantial class time considering how an argument is constructed, and how we relate critically to a text—skills that should serve you well whether your major is in or outside of the humanities.


Reading & Composition: Imagining America, Imagining a New World

English R1A

Section: 7
Instructor: Mansouri, Leila
Time: MWF 1-2
Location: 222 Wheeler


Book List

Defoe, Daniel: Moll Flanders; Franklin, Benjamin: The Autobiography and Other Writings; Hacker, Diana: Rules for Writers, 6th edition; Shakespeare, William: The Tempest

Other Readings and Media

A course reader including excerpts and short works by John Winthrop, Phillis Wheatley, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Walt Whitman, Langston Hughes, and others.

 

Description

What do we imagine when we imagine America? Is America a place? A set of ideals? Both? For the writers we’ll look at, America was a “new world” – one that represented not only a new and uncharted space on the map but a space for conceiving novel relations between man and society, man and government, and man and God. We’ll look at how a number of writers imagined America – and, especially, at how these writers’ imagined Americas were shaped by religious, political, and philosophical ideas – and we’ll ask what’s at stake in the ways each of the writers figured this new world. In doing so, we’ll also ask what, if anything, these imagined Americas have to do with the reality of life in the American colonies and, later, the United States of America.

Our discussion of how these writers imagine America will be shaped by a close attention to the way these writers use rhetoric and figurative language, with an eye to how we might learn from their writing to improve our own. To that end, frequent short responses that ask you to pay close attention to both these writers’ sentences and your own will help you to hone your prose and your critical reading skills. Additionally, over the course of the semester, you will write and a number of short essays, totaling 32 pages including drafts. The peer-review and revision process for each essay will help you learn to fully develop your ideas, engage and persuade your audience, and sharpen your prose.

 


Reading & Composition: Perception and Revolution

English R1A

Section: 8
Instructor: O'Connor, Megan
Time: MWF 2-3
Location: 222 Wheeler


Book List

Austen, Jane: Northanger Abbey; Melville, Herman: Billy Budd, Sailor and Selected Tales; Shelley, Mary: Frankenstein

Other Readings and Media

Course Reader that may include shorter texts by Mary Wollstonecraft, Percy Bysshe Shelley, Samuel Taylor Coleridge, William Blake, William Wordsworth, Jose Martí, Margaret Fuller, Emily Dickinson, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Frederick Douglass, Edgar Allan Poe, Walt Whitman and others.

Description

"But these enchantments were a little disenchanted as his eye fell on the corroded main-chains."                                                          - Herman Melville

As an R&C course, this R1A class will focus on writing skills.  We will practice and discuss the different elements that make up a strong paper, with special attention to argumentation and exposition.  Students will have multiple opportunities to edit and rework drafts of papers.

We will engage the assigned readings – novels, poems, short stories, and essays – as texts that challenge us to read with greater attention to detail, think more critically, write with more precision, and argue with greater nuance.  More specifically we will follow the assigned texts in asking questions about perception and what we might think of as revolutions in perception.  What happens when perception reaches a kind of crisis?  To what extent does a change in perception really produce change?  What are the advantages as well as limitations of visual metaphors?  We will pay particular attention to instances in the texts where perception is contested, unintelligible, altered, contradicted, and changed over the course of time or even an instant.  As we use our guiding concepts and metaphors of ‘perception’ and ‘revolution’ as a means for engaging the texts, we will also use the texts as ways of challenging our guiding concepts.

Requirements:

• Short diagnostic paper

• A minimum of 32 pages of writing, divided among papers of 2-4 pages in length

• Revisions of at least three of these papers


Reading & Composition: Eros and Its Discontents

English R1A

Section: 9
Instructor: Lee, Richard Z
Time: MWF 2-3
Location: 225 Wheeler


Book List

Augustine: Confessions; Austen, Jane: Persuasion; Nabokov, Vladimir: The Annotated Lolita; Plato: The Symposium; Shakespeare, William: As You Like It;

Recommended: Fish, Stanley: How to Write a Sentence

Other Readings and Media

Simon Schama's Power of Art: "Bernini"; Woody Allen (dir.), Annie Hall; The Beatles, Meet the Beatles! and Rubber Soul

Description

This class will have two aims: to develop transferrable writing skills so that students will be well equipped to approach the variety of essay forms they will encounter throughout their college careers, and to think critically about some influential discourses of love and desire as they have developed throughout the Western tradition.  We will begin with foundational accounts of the “problem” of sexual desire in Plato’s Symposium and excerpts from Augustine’s Confessions before turning to Shakespeare’s exuberant and ironic consideration of Eros in As You Like It.  We’ll continue by looking at the intersections of sexual and spiritual desire in poems by John Donne and the Bernini sculpture “The Ecstasy of Saint Theresa.”  We’ll then approach the fraught social dynamics of desire by reading Jane Austen’s Persuasion and Vladimir Nabokov’s Lolita, and conclude by shifting our attention to the newer media of film and pop music, when we’ll watch Woody Allen’s Annie Hall and listen to the earlier music of the Beatles.  Time and student inclination permitting, we may also read some influential theoretical texts by Sigmund Freud and Michel Foucault.  As the semester progresses, we’ll think carefully about how these very different media go about representing and communicating the nature of desire.

Throughout, our course will develop the range and depth of your thinking about the college essay through weekly writing assignments.  We'll consider matters of sentence craft and paragraph organization alongside those of critical reflection.  Students will ultimately produce a total of thirty-two pages of writing across several shorter essays and mandatory revisions. 


Reading & Composition: Things Are Not Okay

English R1A

Section: 10
Instructor: Junkerman, Nicholas
Time: MWF 3-4
Location: 222 Wheeler


Book List

Brown, Charles Brockden: Wieland and Memoirs of Carwin the Biloquist; St. John de Crevecoeur, J. Hector: Letters from an American Farmer

Other Readings and Media

A course reader featuring selected shorter works and critical essays.

Description

 

This course will concentrate on American works written in the decades following the outbreak of the Revolutionary War.  We will be focusing on the work of authors who express unease, pessimism and even anger about the newly created United States.  While they have their hopeful moments, these texts raise serious questions about the stability, the morality and even the sanity of the new nation and its people.  We will consider these dark musings in their immediate historical context, but also in a larger sense.  What is the value of national pessimism?  What are the consequences of righteous anger?  How and why do we write about our fears?

The central goal of this class is to develop tools and strategies for effective writing.  This development will take place alongside and in dialogue with the works that we encounter throughout the semester. Students will be asked to write several papers, the length of which will increase as the semester progresses.  We will take these papers through the crucial stages of drafting and revision, a process which will include peer review sessions and meetings with the instructor.


Reading & Composition: Inhumanity

English R1A

Section: 11
Instructor: Tazudeen, Rasheed
Time: MWF 1-2
Location: 189 Dwinelle


Book List

Byatt, A.S.: Angels and Insects; Flaubert, Gustave: The Temptation of Saint Anthony; Kafka, Franz: The Metamorphosis; Shelley, Mary: Frankenstein

Other Readings and Media

Charles Darwin, On the Origin of Species (selections); Werner Herzog, Grizzly Man (film); A course reader with selections from Gillian Beer, Charles Darwin, Ernst Haeckel, Donna Haraway, Vickie Hearne, Timothy Morton, Arne Naess, Friedrich Nietzsche, Benedict de Spinoza, and others. 

 

Description

“Nature is acquainted with no forms and no concepts, and likewise with no species, but only with an X that remains inaccessible and undefinable for us”

—Friedrich Nietzsche

Nineteenth- and early twentieth-century literature and scientific and philosophical thought posed a challenge to the common belief in the inherent superiority of human over nonhuman life.  As the work of Darwin and other naturalist scientists before and after him decentered the place of the human, a new literature attempted to represent a world not shaped by human intention, artifice, logic, will, and desire.  Many authors and poets adopted a non-anthropocentric perspective in their works, the perspective of the inhuman, the monstrous, and the creaturely, in order to call into question dominant understandings of life, species, the environment, and the human-nonhuman divide.  Our course explores this changed scientific, philosophical, and literary landscape with an eye towards the complexities of how inhumanity, in all its amorphousness and indifference to reason and rational understanding, can be thought by a human consciousness and inscribed into language.

That said, the primary goal of our class is to improve your ability to inscribe complex ideas and interesting arguments into  language.  We will concentrate on mechanics and style, learn how to read closely, formulate arguments, gather evidence, and organize claims into persuasive essays.  Course assignments will include a minimum of 32 pages of writing divided among a number of short essays. 


Reading & Composition: Everywhere is Nowhere: Urbanism and Place in Literature and Art

English R1A

Section: 12
Instructor: Miller, Christopher Patrick
Time: TTh 8-9:30
Location: 222 Wheeler


Book List

Calvino, Italo: Invisible Cities; O'Hara, Frank: Lunch Poems; Poe, Edgar Allen: Selected Stories of Edgar Allan Poe; Rilke, Rainer Maria: Notebooks of Malte Laurids Brigge; Whitman, Walt: Leaves of Grass; Woolf, Virginia: Mrs. Dalloway

Other Readings and Media

Course Reader: Essays:   Ralph Waldo Emerson “Experience”; Henri David Thoreau “Walking”; Baudelaire “Painter of Modern Life”; Walter Benjamin “Paris Expose 1935”; Gaston Bachelard “Poetics of Space” (selections); Robert Venturi and Denise Scott “Learning from Las Vegas”; Writings of the Situationists International (various essays); David Harvey “From Place to Space and Back Again”; Selections from other New York School and Modernist poets

Films / Photographs:  Photographs by Walker Evans, William Eggleston, Andreas Gursky, and Jeff Wall; films: Spike Lee “Do The Right Thing” and Kelly Reichardt “Wendy and Lucy”
 

Description

How do you describe the feel of a city?  What gives a place character?  What enables someone know where they are?  What do we do when we are lost?   
 
This course will pursue fundamental questions about how we imagine, read, reconstruct, and inhabit places.  As we will see, practical questions about how to navigate or understand a place can open on to broad questions about how we value experience, construct social relations, and define the limits of public and private forms.  Just as architecture aspires to give a built form to human thought and ambition, so too does literature provide a formal context in which to experiment with different kinds of human movement and structure.  Our inquiries will take up place and urban experience as a complex social, historical, and political process in which imagination and reality are often interchangeable.  
 
To give us a ground for our conversations, we will look closely at many different “genres” of work about place, fictional and non-fictional.  Our focus will be on how to use these practical and conceptual questions to learn how to be effective critical readers and develop persuasive, contestable arguments. 
 


Reading & Composition: Nostalgia, Homesickness and Exile

English R1A

Section: 13
Instructor: Lee, Sookyoung (Soo)
Time: MW 4-5:30
Location: 179 Dwinelle


Book List

Coetzee, J. M.: Life and Times of Michael K; Conrad, Joseph: The Shadow-Line: A Confession; Ghosh, Amitav: The Shadow Lines; Rushdie, Salman: The Moor's Last Sigh;

Recommended: Williams, Joseph: Style: Lessons in Clarity and Grace

Other Readings and Media

A course reader: short stories by Flannery O'Connor; poetry by Mahmoud Darwish and Li-Young Lee; selections from Rainer Maria Rilke.

Films: Atom Egoyan, Calendar; Wim Wenders, Wings of Desire

Description

“History is a nightmare from which I am trying to awake,” declares Stephen Dedalus in A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man, wishing to unburden himself from the baggages of the past that placed him where he is.

Yet most of us can attest to that feeling of missing a moment in time or an old self. Where does the feeling of nostalgia come from, and to what extent is it personal or collective? The more I know, the less certain I become; so how trustworthy is our remembrance of things past? How does homesickness – produced by both geographical and temporal distance – inform the way a subject acts in the present? Does exile, the banishment from a native land, sensitize the imagination and condition one's ability to empathize? To consider how the modes of nostalgia, homesickness and exile are reflected in and amplified by literature, we will look at writers in various contexts of the last century.

As if to show us how time erodes selfhood, the narratives on the syllabus equivocate between tenses and persons. In responding to these texts, however, the opposite will be the case for your own writing. We will work to hone our critical voice and analytic skills through a series of medium-length essays, presentations, and short response papers.


Reading & Composition: The Essay: Evidence and Idea

English R1A

Section: 14
Instructor: Speirs, Kenneth
Time: MW 10:30-12
Location: 305 Wheeler


Book List

Lahiri, Jhumpa: Interpreter of Maladies

Other Readings and Media

a course reader

Description

Our work in this class will focus on the essay.  Not the five-paragraph one.  Not the one that begins with a simple assertion and moves forward, sometimes ploddingly, point by point.  The essays we will write in this class are exploratory as well as persuasive; they move forward as a form of inquiry, turning on themselves again and again, surprising even the writer as she writes.  Every good essay, we will discover, yearns to be sui generis, unlike any of its predecessors.

But of course, even the most unusual essay has features in common with all the others:  an idea, or, more properly, a network of ideas that shape and bind the many parts of the essay together, whether those parts be stories of experience, observations of the world, or reflections about written texts or images; a three-part structure (beginning, middle, ending); and, finally, every good essay reveals how the mind writing it actually makes sense of things.  That final element may be the most fundamental of all.

The essay we have in mind here does not prove, repeat, or reiterate; it is not a static litany of facts.  Instead, the essay in this class, like the idea, develops, changes, and expands as the writer considers both her subject and her readers, both new kinds of evidence and what her audience will need to know about this particular piece of evidence.  When she gets the words right, when she figures out what she has to say and how to say it, the writing becomes compelling, the subject and the idea more interesting, the reader captivated.

 


Reading & Composition: Tanto melior: The Rhetoric of Superiority

English R1A

Section: 15
Instructor: Saltzman, Benjamin A.
Time: TTh 12:30-2
Location: 305 Wheeler


Book List

Boethius: The Consolation of Philosophy; Milton, John: Paradise Lost; Shakespeare, William: The Winter's Tale; Strunk, William and E. B. White: The Elements of Style

Other Readings and Media

Other readings will include selections from Chaucer, Gregory the Great, Quintilian, George Orwell, and Dante, along with an assortment of critical literature.

Description

“Tanto melior: ne ego quidem intellexi!” [So much better: even I couldn’t understand it!]

So goes the famous compliment than an ancient orator once gave to his student. In response to this example of rhetorical praise, this course will explore what it means to be a “superior” writer by exploring the meaning of superiority across several pieces of literature from the Middle Ages and the Renaissance. We will ask not only how superiority is constructed within these texts (how the balance between dangerous pride and godly excellence operates in sections of Paradise Lost, for example), but also why these texts have been deemed superior literary specimens (why, for example, Shakespeare is considered famous for his literary genius). In the process, we will encounter the very question on which our education depends: what makes for superior writing?

This course will develop the student’s reading comprehension and writing skills as we learn how to ask a good question, construct a strong argument, and compose that argument in clear, compelling prose. We will write four short essays, and strategies for revision will form a major focus of the course. All papers, save the diagnostic essay at the start of the semester, will also undergo work and feedback at the prewriting and draft stages of composition.


Reading & Composition: Unreliable Narrators

English R1A

Section: 16
Instructor: Xiang, Sunny
Time: TTh 2-3:30
Location: 305 Wheeler


Book List

Hamid, Mohsin: The Reluctant Fundamentalist; Ishiguro, Kazuo: An Artist of the Floating World; James, Henry: The Turn of the Screw; Johnson, James Weldon: The Autobiography of an Ex-Coloured Man; Nabokov, Vladimir: Lolita

Other Readings and Media

course reader

Description

What happens when the teller of a story misleads us? What qualities make for a palatable narrator that we as readers are willing to follow to the end of the book? In this course, we will read select twentieth-century novels that prompt us to examine the conditions that influence our capacity to trust the storyteller speaking to us. In speculating on the broader effects and implications of these narrators’ unreliability, we will also attempt to complicate our own position as readers.

This course requires you to complete two essays of increasing length. For these papers, you will go through a process of outlining, drafting, editing, and revising to build a repertoire of critical reading and writing skills. You will also be expected to complete short writing assignments and responses.  


Reading & Composition: History and Form

English R1A

Section: 17
Instructor: Garcia, Marcos Albert
Time: TTh 3:30-5
Location: 35 Evans


Book List

Defoe, Daniel: A Journal of the Plague Year; Gower, John: Confessio Amantis, Volume 1; MacMillan, Margaret: Dangerous Games: The Uses and Abuses of History; Portelli, Alessandro: The Death of Luigi Trastulli, and Other Stories: Form and Meaning in Oral History; Shakespeare, Wm.: Richard III; White, Hayden: The Content of the Form: Narrative Discourse and Historical Representation

Other Readings and Media

Course Packet:  Comparative selections of ancient, medieval, and early modern epics, chronicles, biographies, autobiographies, romances, and world, national, and ecclesiastical histories, with an emphasis on texts produced in England.  Short theoretical selections from Marx, Ranke, Benjamin, de Certeau, etc.

Description

The goal of this course is to explore the conventions, contexts, and uses of writing about the past.  We will investigate historical "writing" in a variety of media (oral recitation, chronicles, poetry, plays, novels, film, etc.) and historical periods (ancient, medieval, early modern, contemporary, etc.), concentrating on the manner in which particular linguistic, rhetorical, generic, visual, and technical conventions produce distinctive conceptions of the past that reflect and respond to specific historical conditions and crises.  This will mean learning some principles of literary criticism (both historicist and formalist), and applying them to a wide range of texts both in our class discussions and in the written assignments.  The readings will consist on the one hand of several theoretical works to frame our discussions of the problems, and on the other of samplings from ancient, medieval, and early modern history writing, culminating in three longer works by Gower, Shakespeare, and Defoe. 

The written assignments will primarily be analyses of particular texts or problems, but one assignment will involve producing an actual historical text. You will write a 2-page diagnostic essay early in the semester.  You will then write three 4-page papers, each of which you will revise one time.  Finally, you will choose one of those 4-page papers to revise and expand into a final 6-page paper.


Reading & Composition: Taste Matters

English R1A

Section: 18
Instructor: Taylor, Bradford Alden
Time: TTh 3:30-5
Location: 222 Wheeler


Book List

Keats, John: The Complete Poems; Stein, Gertrude: Tender Buttons; Wilde, Oscar: The Picture of Dorian Gray; Woolf, Virginia: To the Lighthouse

Other Readings and Media

Film:

Luis Buñuel, The Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie

A course reader, including:

             David Hume, “Of the Standard of Taste”

William Hazlitt, “On Gusto”

Jean Brillat-Savarin, excerpts from The Physiology of Taste

Christina Rossetti, Goblin Market

Franz Kafka, The Hunger Artist

Pierre Bourdieu, “Taste of Luxury, Taste of Necessity”

Carolyn Korsmeyer, “The Meaning of Taste and the Taste of Meaning”

Michael Pollan, excerpts from The Omnivore’s Dilemma

Description

What do we mean when we say that someone has “good taste” or a “cultured palate”? What makes a joke “tasteless” or a film “disgusting”? The concept of taste plays a role in our daily activities (“What’s for lunch?”), but it is also a term deployed in the highest realms of aesthetic appreciation (“Is this art?”). Taste cuts across literature, philosophy, cultural studies and gastronomy. Our readings will be varied accordingly.

Taste is also a deeply subjective and personal sense. We will, therefore, work to refine our descriptive and expository writing skills, learning how to convey personal experiences and interpretations clearly and persuasively. The course will also include a tasting at Blue Bottle Coffee Roasters in Oakland.


Reading & Composition: What is Enlightenment?

English R1A

Section: 19
Instructor: Mangin, Sarah
Time: TTh 5-6:30
Location: 222 Wheeler


Book List

Coetzee, J.M.: Elizabeth Costello; Shelley, Mary: Frankenstein; Swift, Jonathan: Gulliver's Travels

Other Readings and Media

Course Reader

Bertolucci, Bernardo: The Conformist (film)

Description

What constitutes cultural progress? How do we value the potential of a life and a mind? This course will explore some of the complicated legacies of the European Enlightenment. To begin, we will survey ways in which the Enlightenment remains both an ideal and an illusion as it is currently invoked in debates about American prisons, cognition in the Internet age, and the public university. We will then turn to consider a variety of source materials from the crackling public sphere of the eighteenth century—popular magazines, Jonathan Swift’s Gulliver’s Travels, “Newtonian” poetry, the paintings of Jacques Louis David—all of which debate the nature of humanity and citizenship. Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein, Bernardo Bertolucci’s film The Conformist, and J.M. Coetzee’s Elizabeth Costello will help us interrogate broader ethical, perceptual, and political anxieties about Enlightenment compacts in modernity. 

Amid these cultural contexts, our goal is to develop the range and depth of your thinking when approaching the college essay; we will consider matters of sentence craft alongside those of organization and critical reflection. As you track your responses to the readings and engage in lively debate with your colleagues, you will produce a total of thirty-two pages across several short essays and revisions. While we might not answer definitively the question of the course title, our task is that of transmuting “enlightenments” into essay form, into the convincing presentation of your discoveries.


Reading & Composition: When Reading Goes Wrong

English R1A

Section: 20
Instructor: Bauer, Mark
Time: TTh 5-6:30
Location: 109 Wheeler


Book List

Ishiguro, Kazuo: Remains of the Day; McEwan, Ian: Atonement; Nabokov, Vladimir: Pale Fire; Pynchon, Thomas: The Crying of Lot 49

Other Readings and Media

A course reader of essays and poems

Description

Every day, we’re called upon to make hundreds of interpretive judgments based on things we read, see, or hear.  But what happens when we misjudge one of these texts, or when we’re unable to judge it at all?  In addition to being a common element in post-World War II British and American literature, these depictions of failed readings raise important questions about our expectations for genres, not just as readers, but as writers.  What do we assume about a poem, for example, or an essay, when sitting down to read or write one?  How do the writers of those pieces manipulate generic assumptions for maximum effect?  This course’s focus both on depictions of reading practices and on the practices themselves across a variety of genres will allow us to think more deeply about the constructedness of text, an exploration that will in turn lead to careful considerations of writing and the elements that help to constitute skillful uses of language.  In addition to these investigations, the course will also cultivate students’ argumentative and analytical abilities through the drafting, editing, and revision of several short papers over the course of the semester.


Reading & Composition: Educating the Creature

English R1A

Section: 21
Instructor: Naturale, Lauren
Time: MWF 12-1
Location: 189 Dwinelle


Book List

Austen, Jane: Emma; Godwin, William: Caleb Williams; Rousseau, Jean-Jacques: Emile; Shelley, Mary: Frankenstein; Wollstonecraft, Mary: A Vindication of the Rights of Woman

Other Readings and Media

Clueless. Dir. Amy Heckerling. Paramount, 1995. 

Description

"Well, sir, after all, I cannot help feeling very uncomfortably as to my ideas of human nature, when I find that there is no dependence to be placed upon its perseverance, and that, at least among the illiterate, the most promising appearances may end in the foulest disgrace."

"You think, then, that literature and a cultivated mind are the only assurance for the constancy of our principles!"

"Humph!--why do you suppose, sir, that learning and ingenuity do not often serve people rather to hide their crimes than to restrain them from committing them? History tells us strange things in that respect."

-- William Godwin, Caleb Williams (1794)

This writing course focuses on theories of education. What power do books have (or not have) to shape a developing character? Does the way we are raised determine who we will become? If we want to enact radical change in the world, what changes do we need to make in the way we educate our citizens? These are broad questions, but our reading will be comparatively narrow: beginning with selections from Wollstonecraft's A Vindication of the Rights of Woman (which argues not so much that women are equal, but that they *could* be equal if society was better organized) we will move to Mary Shelley's Frankenstein and from there to Caleb Williams by William Godwin (Wollstonecraft's husband and Shelley's father). We'll conclude with two books by people who are, astonishingly, not related to Mary Shelley in any way: Rousseau's  Emile: or, on Education (excerpt)and Jane Austen's Emma, which takes a rather different look at the question of how one might learn to perceive the world accurately - - and in which the title character's own attempts to educate or fix her friend Harriet go disastrously awry. So: our somewhat nebulous topic will be anchored by a reading list organized tightly around a specific moment in time.

The goal of this class is to improve your writing! Students will complete one two page diagnostic essay and three subsequent short essays (each of which will be revised).

 


Reading & Composition: Ideas of the University

English R1B

Section: 1
Instructor: Larner-Lewis, Jonathan
Time: MWF 9-10
Location: 225 Wheeler


Book List

Hardy, Thomas: Jude the Obscure; Woolf, Virginia: Three Guineas

Description

This seems like a good a time to try to figure out, maybe even articulate, what we are all doing here. We will read and write around the themes of education, work and leisure, trying to come to some understanding of what they mean and how they function and interact in our culture, in our own lives, and at our own University. We will engage a few novels, some poetry, essays, films, and other documents, using our readings as an impetus to thinking, discussion, and lots of writing.

At the same time we will work hard on our own writing, on how we construct sentences and paragraphs and develop arguments, with our assignments leading to increasingly complex applications of these skills in the academic environment. We’ll write a short diagnostic essay at the beginning of the semester, followed by three papers of increasing length. We will make use of an extensive peer-review process for our longer papers, which will orient you to your audience, sharpen your critical skills, and improve your writing in the way only heavy revision can. Your final paper will be a research-based project of around 8 pages on an education-related topic of your own devising.


Reading & Composition: On the Road

English R1B

Section: 2
Instructor: Yoon, Irene
Time: MWF 11-12
Location: 225 Wheeler


Book List

Nabokov, Vladimir: The Annotated Lolita; Steinbeck, John: Travels with Charley in Search of America

Other Readings and Media

(May include the following...)

[F i l m s  &  T V  s h o w s]

  • Sullivan's Travels
  • I Love Lucy
  • Thelma and Louise

[C o u r s e   R e a d e r]

  • Select FSA photographs by Dorothea Lange
  • Vladimir Nabokov's "Good Readers and Good Writers"
  • Michel de Certeau's "Spatial Stories"
  • Frederick Jackson Turner's "The Significance of the Frontier in American History"
  • Excerpts from John Steinbeck's The Grapes of Wrath
  • Flannery O'Connor's "A Good Man is Hard to Find"
  • John F. Kennedy's "New Frontier" speech

Description

The six decades between Frederick Jackson Turner’s 1893 declaration of the end of the American Frontier and John F. Kennedy’s commitment to a “New Frontier” of outer space mark a unique period of American mobility and exploration. Without a western frontier to conquer or space exploration fully conceivable, what indeed would a nation Turner characterizes by its continual demand for a wider field of exercise do? If the dominant fact of American history is movement, where would one go? The development of an interstate highway system, the increasing popularity of automobile ownership, and the growth of a roadside culture over the first decades of the twentieth century suggest one answer: on the road.

In this course, we will consider the aftermath of the so-called “first age of American history” through the cultural and historical development and representation of road-tripping in the first half of the twentieth century, paying particular attention to its relation to the imaginative fictions of both Hollywood and national identity. Along the way, we'll consider questions like, how these decades between the closed frontier and the new one inform our current understanding of American movement and place. How does the experience of cross-country travel shape our understanding of national or regional identities? How did this period of frontierless movement transition into the Cold War space race of the latter half of the twentieth century? And what are its present-day legacies?

But the central aim of this course is to develop and refine critical thinking, reading, writing, and research skills. While we will continue to work on mechanics and style, the emphasis in the course will be on how to gather evidence, organize and support claims, engage secondary materials, and ultimately formulate well-researched and well-reasoned arguments for clear, persuasive essays. To that end, this course entails one short diagnostic essay (assigned during the first week of the semester) and three critical essays of increasing length, culminating in a final research paper (~10pgs). Students are also responsible for careful completion of all reading assignments as well as active participation in class discussion and peer review.


Reading & Composition: Quarrels with Ourselves

English R1B

Section: 3
Instructor: Emerson, Maude
Time: MWF 1-2
Location: 225 Wheeler


Book List

Hacker, Diana: Rules for Writers, 6th edition ; Hass, Robert (ed.): Song of Myself and Other Poems by Walt Whitman; Larsen, Nella: Passing; Nabokov, Vladimir: Lolita;

Recommended: Yeats, W.B.: The Collected Poems

Other Readings and Media

A course reader containing selections from W.B. Yeats, James Joyce, Emily Dickinson, Ralph Waldo Emerson, W.E.B. Du Bois, Edgar Allan Poe, Wallace Stevens, Countee Cullen, and Derek Walcott, in addition to some secondary and critical materials

Description

“Out of our quarrels with others we make rhetoric. Out of our quarrels with ourselves we make poetry.” – W.B. Yeats

In this college writing course, we will study works of literature that record an author’s quarrels with his or herself. How do various literary genres accommodate different kinds of quarrels? What are the forces that can prevent a person from making up her mind? What does she stand to gain by sustaining ambivalence, and what does she risk losing? The authors we will read in this course find themselves divided on questions of love, identity, politics, and aesthetics. We will pay particular attention to the ways in which they give their dilemmas literary form, beginning with Yeats and the special status he claims for poetry before moving on to consider the essay, the story, and the novel. Through exploring the many modes of ambivalence, oscillation and indecision that literature can entertain, you will both hone your analytical skills and get acquainted with the language and structure of argument. You will practice using both of these skill sets, the analytical and the argumentative, in a number of essays and other writing assignments. This course also provides an introduction to research skills. At least one of the papers (and several of the shorter assignments) will ask you to find and evaluate secondary sources and incorporate them gracefully into your writing.


Reading & Composition: The Cold War and American Art

English R1B

Section: 4
Instructor: Rahimtoola, Samia Shabnam
Time: MWF 3-4
Location: 225 Wheeler


Book List

Baldwin, James: Giovanni's Room; Dick, Philip K.: The Man in the High Castle; O'Hara, Frank: Meditations in an Emergency

Other Readings and Media

A course reader will be required for the course.

Description

National security, the nuclear family, racial tensions, and rampant consumerism mark the early years of the Cold War in the United States.  In this course, we will examine the cultural influence of the Cold War context on American literature, with a specific eye towards the production and policing of social deviance.  At the same time, we will pay attention to the ways in which Cold War politics and technologies, such as eavesdropping, the aerial view, and other surveillance technologies, impacted artistic forms.  Specific works include excerpts from Brown vs. the Board of Education, Frank O’Hara’s Meditations in an Emergency, James Baldwin’s Giovanni’s Room, P.K. Dick’s The Man in the High Castle, and Yoko Ono’s Cut Piece.

In this course, you will develop your critical reading and writing skills through frequent, short assignments and longer papers.  Although writing a research paper can seem like a paralyzing task, this class will guide you through pre-writing, research, drafts and revisions to build up to a research-length paper.  We will spend significant time honing research skills through in-class activities, daily assignments, and longer research papers.  Class time will also be devoted to developing analytical, argumentative, and verbal skills to construct more sustained arguments than those the student may have encountered in R1A.  Cumulatively, you will produce at least 32 pages of writing.

 


Reading & Composition: Adventures of the Unheroic: A Hero’s Journey in Fourteenth-Century Poetry

English R1B

Section: 5
Instructor: Crosson, Chad Gregory
Time: MWF 3-4
Location: 103 Wheeler


Book List

Booth, W.: The Craft of Research; Borroff, M.: The Gawain Poet: Complete Works; Esolen, A.: Inferno; Fitzgerald, R.: The Aeneid; Mandelbaum, A.: The Aeneid of Virgil

Other Readings and Media

Course Reader

Description

Narrow escapes, displays of prowess, and confrontations that end in triumph tend to typify the heroic in popular culture, whether in action films or graphic novels.  Although some contributions to these genres may at times complicate this portrayal, one needs only to mention films like Die Hard or the Matrix to convey popular expectations of the hero.  The subject of this course is fourteenth-century poetry with its display of, as some have put it, the unheroic; that is, besides lacking depictions of heroic action, this poetry creates the image of a humbled and weakened man.  As we read the poetry from this period, we will consider this unheroic image in some of the following ways: Does this poetry depict an unheroic man, or is the heroic ideal significantly altered from classical literature?  How do we approach questions of morality in an “unheroic” literary milieu?

We will begin this discussion by looking at examples of the hero in classical literature before moving into late fourteenth-century English poetry.  These literary works will form the basis of your practice in critical reading, and they will also form the subject of your papers.  Although much of our class discussion will revolve around the books we are reading, a significant portion of the course will focus on writing and research.  You will compose a series of short reading response papers that will be developed into a ten-page research paper.  


Reading & Composition: "The Play's the Thing": Literature as Make-Believe

English R1B

Section: 6
Instructor: Xin, Wendy Veronica
Time: TTh 8-9:30
Location: 225 Wheeler


Book List

Austen, Jane: Northanger Abbey; Barrie, J. M.: Peter Pan; Bronte, Charlotte: Villette; James, Henry: The Turn of the Screw; McEwan, Ian: Atonement; Shakespeare, William: A Midsummer Night's Dream

Other Readings and Media

del Toro, Guillermo: Pan's Labyrinth (2006); Nolan, Christopher: The Prestige (2006)

Description

Course Description: Make-believe has an astonishing ability to register itself as fantasy, diversion, duplicity, therapy, etc. This course will introduce students to methods of close reading, argumentative writing, scholarly research, and critical thinking through an exploration of texts that pivot around the idea of play-acting. Our readings suggest that there is a magical property to the deed of literally making belief, a conjuring act of creation. They allow us to muse not only on conscious fictions taken in their most literal sense (i.e. magicians’ sleights of hand or fantasy in The Prestige and Pan’s Labyrinth) but also in their various incarnations as narrative trickery, suspense, or generic experimentation (as in Villette or Atonement). We will consider more broadly how fiction constitutes itself as a form of private amusement and/or public entertainment but also as a more serious meditation on the value of fact and history. What relationship does illusion have to truth? Is fiction ever “truthful”? To what extent do the related tasks of performing, pretending, playing, and lying intersect? How do these texts bewitch their readers into indulging in similar systems of belief?

While we will spend a good deal of class time puzzling over the intricacies and idiosyncrasies of the selected texts, we will also focus on strengthening analytical, argumentative, and expository techniques. With this in mind, students will build upon skills gained in R1A, honing their writing and research through diagnostic essays, outlines, drafts, annotated bibliographies, and revisions, all of which will culminate in a final research paper.


Reading & Composition: Revolution and Counter-Revolution in the Long 20th Century

English R1B

Section: 7
Instructor: Richards, Jill
Time: TTh 8-9:30
Location: 109 Wheeler


Book List

Bolano, Roberto: By Night in Chile; Coetzee, Joseph: Waiting for the Barbarians; Collins, Suzanne: The Hunger Games; Conrad, Joseph: The Secret Agent; Lewis, Wyndham: BLAST 1; Satrapi, Marjane: The Complete Persepolis

Other Readings and Media

A course reader will include selections from Edmund Burke, Karl Marx, Arthur Rimbaud, Louise Michel, Kristin Ross, Janet Lyon, Emma Goldman, F.T. Marinetti, Mina Loy, Andre Breton, Vladimir Mayakovsky, Langston Hughes, W.H. Auden, Assata Shakur, and Giorgio Agamben. Films include Man With a Movie Camera dir. Dziga Vertov, Pan’s Labyrinth dir. Guillermo del Toro, and District Nine dir. Neil Blomkamp. 

Description

In "Modernity and Revolution," Perry Anderson begins with a periodizing claim, arguing that “the haze of social revolution drifting across the horizon of this epoch gave it much of its apocalyptic light for those currents of modernism most unremittingly and violently radical in their rejection of the social order as a whole.” This class will take a closer look at these strains of modernism, beginning in revolutionary France and continuing into the Arab Spring. Moving across prose poems, detective stories, manifestos, agitprop posters, cinema, and the graphic novel, we will look at the way these works speak through and for moments of historical rupture. We will ask ourselves: How can a text tell a historical story? What is the difference between fiction and history? How might a given way of telling a story take sides in a larger conflict?  

To this end, we will think about the formal choices an author makes: Why write a character as flat or round? Why break the poetic line at any given point? Why use a really long sentence or a really short sentence? Why rhyme or not rhyme? What do these choices do?  In class we will disagree, agree, persuade, and generally wander in and around these materials to better understand how they work. These conversations will provide a model for what literary arguments can look like. A portion of the class will be spent working on the writing skills you need to convey such arguments clearly and effectively.  This section of the course will be geared towards creating an original, argumentative thesis, organizing a paper, and avoiding common grammatical mistakes. The writing assignments for the course will include one short diagnostic paper and two longer papers that combine analysis of primary texts with research from secondary sources. Much of this writing will pass through a process of drafting, peer workshop, and revision.


Reading & Composition: Fictions of the Human

English R1B

Section: 8
Instructor: Gaydos, Rebecca
Time: TTh 11-12:30
Location: 225 Wheeler


Book List

Burroughs, William S.: The Ticket That Exploded; Coetzee, J.M.: The Lives of Animals; Dick, Philip K.: Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?; Ishiguro, Kazuo: Never Let Me Go

Other Readings and Media

Course reader including selections from René Descartes, F. T. Marinetti, Alan Turing, Andy Warhol, Jackson Mac Low, Donna Haraway, Katherine Hayles, Paul Virilio, and Andy Clark.

Film: Blade Runner

Description

What constitutes our humanness? Are thinking and language-use uniquely human capacities or can intelligence be attributed to animals and machines? Is it possible to conceive of a timeless definition of the human being, or is human identity periodically reconfigured by historical and technological developments? Against the background of these broad questions, this course will pay close attention to the role that literature plays in investigating the significance of humanness in the 20th and 21st centuries. Topics to be considered include: literary representations of human-animal-machine continuums, cyborg subjectivity, the relationship between disability studies and technoscience, and debates around posthumanism, transhumanism, and prosthetic enhancement.  Rather than simply looking at how literary texts represent these topics thematically, we will focus on how authors engage these issues through formal experimentation.

The primary goal of this course is to improve your academic writing. Students will develop their analytic and argumentative skills—both in writing and verbally through intensive class discussion. The semester will culminate with each student producing an 8-10 page research paper.


Reading & Composition: Yes: Fragmentary Literature

English R1B

Section: 9
Instructor: Acu, Adrian Mark
Time: TTh 3:30-5
Location: 51 Evans


Book List

Doolittle, Hilda: Trilogy; Jones, David: In Parenthesis; Riley, John: Selected Poems; Vonnegut, Kurt: Slaughterhouse Five; Woolf, Virginia: To the Lighthouse

Description

The work of the critic is often thought of as constructing a “yes” out of a “no”: of making meaning out of textual problems.  In order to better align the critic with the writer, this class will work with 20th century texts that do the same.  How can the work of interpretation be done in the wake of the multiple instantiations of its failure—such as the World Wars—while convincingly avoiding nihilism?

Like these authors, we will work towards integrating your own original thinking with the critical discourse around your interests through a series of writing exercises and peer-review.


Reading & Composition: Writing and Controversy

English R1B

Section: 10
Instructor: Rodal, Jocelyn
Time: TTh 3:30-5
Location: 225 Wheeler


Book List

Conrad, Joseph: Heart of Darkness; Ginsberg, Allen: Howl and Other Poems; Hacker, Diana: Rules for Writers; Hemingway, Ernest: The Sun Also Rises; Nabokov, Vladimir: Lolita; Woolf, Virginia: Mrs. Dalloway

Description

How do we approach writing that seeks to alienate us?  How can we understand books whose characters refuse to understand each other?  How should we react when confronted with art so offensive that understanding seems unethical? 

This course examines controversy in and around literary texts to more broadly understand how argument and disagreement operate in writing.  We will read texts about controversy (conflict between characters) as well as texts that generate controversy (conflict between readers).  Along the way, some of the most loaded issues of contemporary society will arise, including racism, war, and sexual violence.  Confronted with views alien to their own, students will consider when mutual understanding is possible as well as when conflict may be preferable to compromise.

A careful contemplation of argument and disagreement will fuel your ability to craft your own written arguments, and the primary aim of this course is to teach writing and composition.  Through close reading, we will marshal evidence to support and communicate our respective viewpoints.  You will use original research to develop progressively longer papers as the semester progresses, ultimately completing 32 pages of writing in drafts as well as revisions.

 


Reading & Composition: Belief

English R1B

Section: 11
Instructor: Kolb, Margaret
Time: TTh 5-6:30
Location: 225 Wheeler


Book List

Austen, Jane: Northanger Abbey; Scott, Sir Walter: Waverley; Shakespeare, William: Othello; Walpole, Horace: The Castle of Otranto

Description

What constitutes belief, and how and why do we believe what we do? What kinds of belief attend to particular genres -- to fictional text, editorial, article, or essay? What makes a convincing (or “believable”) essay, and to what extent is such convincing in accord with, or subservient to the constraints and expectations associated with the essay form? In this course, we will explore historically shifting conceptions of evidence and proof over the modern period alongside various explanations of the kinds of belief that attend to particular forms (including, for example, Coleridge’s explanation of the “suspension of disbelief” that fiction entails). Substantial readings include selections from the Bible, Shakespeare’s Othello, Pascal’s Pensees, David Hume’s Treatise on Human Nature, Horace Walpole’s Castle of Otranto, Jane Austen’s Northanger Abbey, Samuel Coleridge’s Biographia Literaria, and Walter Scott’s Waverley, but we’ll also attend to articles and editorials of a wide variety of genres (including mathematical arguments) to consider these questions thoughtfully in our conversations and in our writing. Written assignments will include bi-weekly short assignments (1-2 pages) and revisions, culminating in a longer research essay on a topic of your choosing.


Reading & Composition: Labyrinths of Language

English R1B

Section: 12
Instructor: Moore, Stephanie Anne
Time: TTh 5-6:30
Location: 223 Wheeler


Book List

Auster, Paul: The New York Trilogy; Borges, Jorge Luis: Labyrinths; Bunyan, John: Grace Abounding to the Chief of Sinners: Or Brief Faithful Relation Exceeding Mercy God Christ his Poor Servant John ; Conrad, Joseph: Typhoon and Other Tales; Satrapi, Marjane: The Sigh; Shakespeare, William: King Lear; Shakespeare, William: Othello; Sophocles: Sophocles I: Oedipus The King, Oedipus at Colonus, Antigone ; Toomer, Jean: Cane

Other Readings and Media

Additional readings--including lyric poetry, essays and short fiction--will be posted on bSpace. We'll also watch a film, Memento (dir. Christopher Nolan), and possibly some film adaptations of the plays we're reading.

Description

Words, when they are well-behaved, are supposed to do our bidding. We trust them to contain our thoughts and mediate our relationships with each another without asserting their own agency or being. But Western literature is full of stories in which words control us. We’ll be reading a variety of works in which human beings are at the mercy of language in one way or another, and we’ll be using that (very loose) theme to think about the practice of interpretation and about our own writing. This class is designed to help you improve as a writer, critical thinker, and attentive reader; its other goal is to introduce you to basic research methods. We will talk a lot about how to situate our work inside larger conversations, so that you’ll not only be developing your own interpretations of the texts we read, but you’ll also be evaluating the interpretations of others.

(Note: not all of the works listed will end up on the syllabus.)


Reading & Composition: Hip-hop and American Culture

English R1B

Section: 13
Instructor: Lee, Seulghee
Time: TTh 3:30-5
Location: 221 Wheeler


Book List

Algarin, Miguel et al., eds.: Aloud: Voices from the Nuyorican Poets Cafe; Baraka, Amiri: The LeRoi Jones/Amiri Baraka Reader; Beatty, Paul: The White Boy Shuffle; Diaz, Junot: Drown; Hoch, Danny: Jails, Hospitals, & Hip-hop/Some People; Mansbach, Adam: Angry Black White Boy; Reed, Ishmael, ed.: From Totems to Hip-hop; Sapphire: Push

Other Readings and Media

Also a course packet including readings by Adam Bradley, Paul Gilroy, Dick Hebdige, Robin D. G. Kelley, Charles Olson, Tricia Rose, and Cornel West; Wayne Booth, et. al, The Craft of Research; Diane Hacker, Rules for Writers.

Description

In a typical college class on hip-hop, you might expect to investigate the history and sociology of this complex cultural movement, beginning in the South Bronx with DJ Kool Herc and the transformation of household appliance into musical instrument. This course aims to do the opposite: beginning by asking how hip-hop matters--or doesn't--in American culture today, we will aim to trace hip-hop's influence on and imbrication with our current lived experience. Is Nas right to claim, as long ago as 2006, that hip-hop is dead? In order to answer this question we will consider thinkers on the black vernacular tradition, on the use of everyday speech in/as poetry, and on what we mean by "culture." Literary figures to explore together include Amiri Baraka, Paul Beatty, Claude Brown, Junot Diaz, Ishmael Reed, and Sapphire. Rap artists we may discuss include Jay-Z, Kanye West, Missy Elliott, The Notorious B.I.G., OutKast, and Tupac Shakur. Along the way , we may also examine non-literary artists such as Dave Chappelle, William Cordova, Savion Glover, Brian Jungen, Spike Lee, and Katt Williams.

We will develop authorial and critical voices of our own in both discussion and writing. In addition to shorter exercises in argumentative and research-based writing, you will turn in two essays, the longer of which will incorporate secondary sources on a research topic of your own design. You will revise both essays, and we will conclude the semester with brief presentations on your research topic.


Freshman Seminar: Reading Art Spiegelman's Maus I & II

English 24

Section: 1
Instructor: Wong, Hertha D. Sweet
Time: W 3-5 (8/29-10/10 only)
Location: 275 Kroeber


Book List

Understanding Comics: The Invisible Art; Spiegelman, A.: Maus, Volume I: A Survivor's Tale, My Father Bleeds History; Spiegelman, A.: Maus, Volume II: A Survivor's Tale, And Here My Troubles Began

Description

This seminar will meet for seven weeks on the following dates: August 29, September 5, September 12, September 19, September 26, October 3, and October 10.

Art Spiegelman has been called "one of our era's foremost comics artists" and "perhaps the single most important comic creator working within the field." In this seminar we will devote ourselves to a close reading of his Pulitzer Prize-winning graphic memoir, Maus, informed by a small dose of comics criticism. Students should be prepared for active involvement and at least six pages of informal writing.

This 1-unit course may not be counted as one of the twelve courses required to complete the English major.


Freshman Seminar: Margaret Atwood’s Dystopian Fictions

English 24

Section: 2
Instructor: Snyder, Katherine
Time: Tues. 10-11
Location: 205 Wheeler


Book List

Atwood, Margaret: Oryx and Crake; Atwood, Margaret: The Handmaid's Tale; Atwood, Margaret: The Year of the Flood

Description

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This 1-unit course may not be counted as one of the twelve courses required to complete the English major.


Freshman Seminar: The Arts at Berkeley and Beyond

English 24

Section: 3
Instructor: Padilla, Genaro M.
Time: W 2-3
Location: 202 Wheeler


Other Readings and Media

No texts.

Description

In this seminar we will attend literary, art, and musical performances in and around Berkeley to introduce first-year students to the astonishing range of cultural production on the campus and in the Bay Area. We will visit the Berkeley Art Museum and the Hearst Museum, as well as, if possible, museums in Oakland and San Francisco; we will attend dance, theater, and musical performances at Zellerbach Hall and elsewhere on campus; and we will view at least one film at the Pacific Film Archive. We will engage in discussion based on short response papers by the students in the seminar. This seminar is part of the Connections@Cal initiative. This seminar is a Berkeley Arts Seminar. Admission to the on-campus arts events included in this course will be provided at no cost to students. This seminar is part of the Food for Thought Seminar Series.

Field trip and performance dates and arrangements will be discussed in class.

This 1-unit course may not be counted as one of the twelve courses required to complete the English major.


Introduction to the Writing of Short Fiction

English 43A

Section: 1
Instructor: Chandra, Vikram
Time: TTh 11-12:30
Location: 301 Wheeler


Book List

Furman, Laura: The PEN/O. Henry Prize Stories 2012

Other Readings and Media

A course reader, to be purchased from Zee Zee Copy.

Description

A short fiction workshop.  Over the course of the semester, each student will write and revise two stories.  Each participant in the workshop will edit student-written stories, and will write a formal critique of each manuscript.  Students are required to attend two literary readings over the course of the semester, and write a short report about each reading they attend.  Students will also take part in online discussions about fiction.  Attendance is mandatory.

Throughout the semester, we will read published stories from various sources, and also essays by working writers about fiction and the writing life.  The intent of the course is to have the students confront the problems faced by writers of fiction, and to discover the techniques that enable writers to construct a convincing and engaging representation of reality on the page.

To be considered for admission to this class, please submit a writing sample (ten pages or less, double-spaced) of fiction you have written, along with an application form, to Vikram Chandra's mailbox in 322 Wheeler Hall, BY 4:00 P.M., TUESDAY, APRIL 17, AT THE LATEST

Be sure to read the paragraph concerning creative writing courses on page 1 of this Announcement of Classes for futher information regarding enrollment in such courses!


Literature in English: Through Milton

English 45A

Section: 1
Instructor: Landreth, David
Time: MW 2-3 + discussion sections F 2-3
Location: 213 Wheeler


Book List

Chaucer, Geoffrey: Canterbury Tales; Donne, John: Complete Poems; Marlowe, Christopher: Doctor Faustus; Milton, John: Paradise Lost; Spenser, Edmund: Edmund Spenser's Poetry

Description

This class introduces students to the production of poetic narrative in English through the close study of major works in that tradition: the Canterbury Tales, The Faerie Queene, Doctor Faustus, Donne's lyrics, and Paradise Lost. Each of these texts reflects differently on the ambition of poetry to encompass the range of a culture’s experience. We will focus particularly on the relationships of different genres to different kinds of knowledge, to see how different ways of expressing things make possible new things to express, as English culture and English poetry transform each other from the fourteenth to the seventeenth centuries.

Please note that this class will first meet on Monday, August 27; discussion sections will not start being held until Friday, August 31.


Literature in English: Through Milton

English 45A

Section: 2
Instructor: Justice, Steven
Time: MW 3-4 + discussion sections F 3-4
Location: 60 Evans


Book List

Chaucer, Geoffrey: Canterbury Tales; Donne, John: John Donne's Poetry; Milton, John: Paradise Lost; Spenser, Edmund: Edmund Spenser's Poetry

Description

An introduction to English literary history from the fourteenth through the seventeenth centuries. Canterbury TalesThe Faerie Queene, and Paradise Lost will dominate the semester, as objects of study in themselves, of course, but also as occasions for considering issues of linguistic and cultural change, and of literary language, form, and innovation.

Please note that this class will first meet on Monday, August 27; discussion sections will not start being held until Friday, August 31.


Literature in English: Late 17th- Through Mid-19th Centuries

English 45B

Section: 1
Instructor: Goldsmith, Steven
Time: MW 10-11 + discussion sections F 10-11
Location: 3 LeConte


Book List

Norton Anthology of English Literature Volume C; Norton Anthology of English Literature Volume D; Franklin, Benjamin: The Autobiography and Other Writings; Jacobs, Harriet: Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl; Melville, Herman: Moby-Dick; Shelley, Mary: Frankenstein

Description

Our course begins at sea, with the “violent storm” and shipwreck of Gulliver’s Travels, and ends at sea in Moby-Dick, with the Pequod sinking in a “vortex” just above the equator in the Pacific Ocean.   These scenes of oceanic dislocation correspond to the rise of modernity that forms our topic.  Eighteenth- and nineteenth- century modernity involves a variety of new or accelerating instabilities: epistemological uncertainty; cultural relativism in newly imagined global contexts; the transformation of economic value from land to (liquid) capital; linguistic self-consciousness in a rapidly expanding print culture; and altered forms of subjectivity navigating the new political rhetoric of republicanism, freedom, and individualism.  Throughout the course, we will ask what literary anxieties and opportunities such large scale transformations entail, at a time when everything solid—self, world, and society—turns fluid, as if at sea. 

Please note that this class will first meet on Monday, August 27; discussion sections will not start being held until Friday, August 31.


Literature in English: Late 17th- Through Mid-19th Centuries

English 45B

Section: 2
Instructor: Puckett, Kent
Time: MW 12-1 + discussion sections F 12-1
Location: 159 Mulford


Book List

Austen, J.: Persuasion; Defoe, D.: Robinson Crusoe; Equiano, O.: The Interesting Narrative; Franklin, B.: Autobiography; Melville, H.: Billy Budd and Other Tales; Sterne, L.: A Sentimental Journey

Description

This course is an introduction to British and American literature from the eighteenth through the mid-nineteenth century. We'll read works from that period (by Swift, Pope, Sterne, Franklin, Equiano, Wordsworth, Austen, Melville, Dickinson, Whitman, and others) and think about how politics, aesthetics, the everyday, race, gender, and identity all find expression in a number of different literary forms. We'll especially consider the material and symbolic roles played by the idea and practice of revolution in the period.

Please note that this class will first meet on Monday, August 27; discussion sections will not start being held until Friday, August 31.

 


Literature in English: Mid-19th Through the 20th Century

English 45C

Section: 1
Instructor: Altieri, Charles F.
Time: MW 11-12 + discussion sections F 11-12
Location: 159 Mulford


Book List

Faulkner, William: The Sound and the Fury; James, Henry: The Portrait of a Lady; Joyce, James: Dubliners; Ramizani: Norton Anthology of Modern Poetry; Wilde, Oscar: The Picture of Dorian Gray and Other Writings; Woolf, Virginia: Mrs. Dalloway

Other Readings and Media

There will be some texts on bspace.

Description

This course will focus on texts that I think are indispensable for the study of modernism in English and in American literature.  It will be primarily lecture on Mondays and Wednesdays, although there will considerable efforts at discussion.  My emphasis will be on close reading rather than literary history, so papers also will require careful attention to specific passages.  There will be a mid-term and two essays required.  And regular attendance is mandatory.

Please note that this class will first meet on Monday, August 27; discussion sections will not start being held until Friday, August 31.

 


Literature in English: Mid-19th Through the 20th Century

English 45C

Section: 2
Instructor: Wong, Hertha D. Sweet
Time: MW 1-2 + discussion sections F 1-2
Location: 3 LeConte


Book List

READER; Achebe, C.: Things Fall Apart; Conrad, J.: Heart of Darkness; Morrison, T.: Beloved; Silko, L.: Ceremony; Spiegelman, A.: Maus (2 volumes); Woolf, V.: Mrs. Dalloway

Description

This survey course of literature in English from the mid-nineteenth century to the present will consider a variety of literary forms and movements in their historical and cultural contexts. We'll examine the literature of colonization and imperialism and the counter literature that it inspires. We'll study literary experimentation and recurrent transcultural themes: the relationship between past and present, surviving historical trauma, translating orality into print, and the influence of notions of race, ethnicity, class, nationality, and gender on subject formation. We'll read Irish and English texts, Native American and European American texts, African American and African English texts, yet challenge the simplistic binary dualisms these categories suggest. We'll also practice lots of close reading. There will be two 5-to-7-page essays, a midterm, and a final examination.

Please note that this class will first meet  on August 27; discussion sections will not start being held until Friday, August 31.


Introduction to Environmental Studies

English C77

Section: 1
Instructor: Hass, Robert L.
Hass, Robert & Sposito, Gary
Time: TTh 12:30-2 + 1-1/2 hours of discussion section per week
Location: 100 GPB


Other Readings and Media

The required books for the course will be available exclusively at Analog Books, located just one block up Euclid Avenue from the North Gate entrance to the Berkeley campus. The Course Reader, Introduction to Environmental Studies, will be available exclusively from Copy Central, 2483 Hearst Avenue, right across the street from the North Gate entrance. There will also be a required environmental science textbook (possibly provided as an eBook).

Description

This is a team-taught introduction to environmental studies. The team consists of a professor of environmental science, a professor of English, and three graduate student instructors woking in the field. The aim of the course is to give students the basic science of the environment, an introduction to environmental literature, philosophy, and policy issues, and analytic tools to evaluate a range of environmental problems. The course requires some time spent outdoors in observation as well as a lot of reading and writing.

This course is cross-listed with E.S.P.M. C12.


Sophomore Seminar: High Culture, Low Culture: Postmodernism and the Films of the Coen Brothers

English 84

Section: 1
Instructor: Bader, Julia
Time: Thurs. 2-5
Location: 300 Wheeler


Book List

Books to be determined.

Description

We will concentrate on the high and low cultural elements in the noir comedies of the Coen brothers, discussing their use of Hollywood genres, parodies of classic conventions, and representation of arbitrariness.  We will also read some fiction and attend events at the Pacific Film Archive and Cal Performances. This seminar may be used to satisfy the Arts and Literature breadth requirement in Letters and Science.

This 2-unit course may not be counted as one of the twelve courses required to complete the English major.

 


Sophomore Seminar: Know Thyself

English 84

Section: 2
Instructor: Coolidge, John S.
Time: M 2-4
Location: 201 Wheeler


Other Readings and Media

No books required.

Description

This simple, two-word admonition ("Know Thyself") carved over the entrance to the ancient temple at Delphi might be called the founding oracle of western humanism. The phrase itself is alive and well today, as a Google search will amply confirm, but what does it mean? We will read and discuss texts exemplifying the remarkable variety of ways in which the oracle has been interpreted, and some of the key concepts and controversies associated with it, concluding with Socrates’ bemusing declaration that “The unexamined life is not livable for a human being.” The course is intended to appeal especially to students desirous of getting in on the intellectual conversation of our time and curious as to its cultural antecedents. As part of the Connections@Cal initiative it calls for on-line discussion during the week preparatory to student-led discussion in class, as will be explained more fully in the first meeting.

This 2-unit course may not be counted as one of the twelve courses required to complete the English major.


Introduction to Old English

English 104

Section: 1
Instructor: O'Brien O'Keeffe, Katherine
Time: TTh 12:30-2
Location: 110 Barrows


Book List

Marsden, Richard.: The Cambridge Old English Reader; McGillivray, Murray.: A Gentle Introduction to Old English

Description

Canst þu þis gewrit understandan? Want to? “Introduction to Old English” will give you the tools to read a wide variety of writings from among the earliest recorded texts in the English language. What is there to read?  We will look at some of the best kept secrets in (Old) English—short heroic poems, accounts of war, poems of meditation and elegies, history, saints’ lives, and romance—and get a taste of the curious (recipes, charms, prognostications) as well as the humorous (riddles). To complement our work with these Old English texts we’ll be using on-line and library resources to learn about the material culture of Anglo-Saxon England. With these resources we can also experiment with deciphering the texts as they appear in their manuscripts and delve into the mysteries of Old English runes.  While we work on language in the beginning of the course we will also be reading and discussing the texts. Once you are up and running with the language, the rest of the course will provide practical experience in reading and discussing Old English works on a range of topics: the portrayal of monsters, saints, and heroes, cultural identity and the problem of the Vikings, the composition of Old English poetry, and the search for Anglo-Saxon paganism. In-class discussion will cover questions of cultural difference, translation, subjectivity, and otherness.

 No prior experience with Old or Middle English is necessary for this course.

 Required work: Quizzes, mid-term assessment, final examination, daily class participation, a short paper, one or two in-class reports.

 This course satisfies the pre-1800 requirement for the English major.

 

 


English Drama to 1603

English 114A

Section: 1
Instructor: No instructor assigned yet.
Time: TTh 5-6:30
Location: 110 Barrows


Book List

Dekker, Thomas: The Shoemaker's Holiday; Gibbons, Brian, ed.: Christopher Marlowe: Four Plays; Heywood, Thomas: The Fair Maid of the West; Kyd, Thomas: The Spanish Tragedy; Lester, G. A., ed.: Three Late Medieval Plays; Lyly, John: Galatea and Midas; Mr. S: Gammer Gurton's Needle; Shakespeare: Titus Andronicus

Other Readings and Media

Also a course reader.

Description

This course offers a wide-ranging survey of sixteenth-century drama up to and beyond the building of the first commercial theaters in London in the 1570s. After sampling the medieval mystery and morality traditions, we will consider the formal and theatrical experimentalism of the early Tudor plays, ranging from the avant-garde to the absurd. In proceeding from there to a diverse selection of works of the professional stage, we will attend not only to generic forms and representational strategies, but also to the theater itself as a material institution within an emergent early modern marketplace.

This course satisfies the pre-1800 requirement for the English major.


The English Renaissance (Through the 16th Century)

English 115A

Section: 1
Instructor: Miller, Jennifer
Time: TTh 2-3:30
Location: 166 Barrows


Other Readings and Media

a Course Reader

Description

For more information on this course, please contact Professor Miller at j_miller@berkeley.edu.

This course satisfies the pre-1800 requirement for the English major.


Backgrounds of English Literature in the Continental Renaissance

English 116

Section: 1
Instructor: No instructor assigned yet.
Time: TTh 12:30-2
Location: 130 Wheeler


Book List

Castiglione: The Book of the Courtier; Cervantes: Don Quixote; Erasmus: The Praise of Folly; Machiavelli: The Prince; Montaigne: The Essays of Montaigne; Rabelais: Gargantua and Pantagruel

Other Readings and Media

Also a course reader.

Description

This course will survey some of the major prose writings of the continental Renaissance in their cultural and historical contexts. Various in genre, including political philosophy (Machiavelli), essays (Montaigne), and proto-novels (Rabelais and Cervantes), these works all blur the boundary between fact and fiction, and the literary and non-literary. Although these texts themselves present constantly shifting ground, some recurring topics will include the social function of rhetoric, antagonism between elite and popular culture, versions of the "modern" self, and pre-novelistic discourse. The writers covered in this course influence English literature in the early modern period and beyond. But this course is less concerned with establishing "backgrounds to English literature" than it is with reading, in English, some of the most brilliant minds of the Renaissance. (Please note that this course does NOT satisfy the pre-1800 requirement for the English major.)


Shakespeare

English 117A

Section: 1
Instructor: Turner, James Grantham
Time: TTh 3:30-5
Location: 105 North Gate


Book List

Shakespeare, William: The Norton Shakespeare (Second Edition)

Description

We will read as much as possible of the Complete Works, up to and including Hamlet (generally thought to have been written in 1600). In fact we will begin and end with that extraordinary play, exploring the individual elements that run throughout Shakespeare’s earlier career and come together there: tragedy, comedy, history, poetry, satire, revenge, love, madness, mistaken identity, parent-child conflict, theatricality, creativity. As Theseus says in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, another work we will examine in detail, “The lunatic, the lover and the poet / Are of imagination all compact.”


Shakespeare

English 117S

Section: 1
Instructor: Marno, David
Time: NOTE NEW TIME: WF 4-5:30
Location: NOTE NEW LOCATION: 390 Hearst Mining


Book List

Greenblatt, Stephen: The Norton Shakespeare

Description

This class is a general survey of Shakespeare’s dramatic and poetic works. One of the main issues I'd like to focus on is the oscillation between "regular" and "irregular." What is the rule, and what is the exception in Shakespeare's works? How is a comedy supposed to end? How does it end? What makes a tragic hero? Is Hamlet a tragic hero? What are the rules of theater? What are the rules of literature? Who creates them and why? When do they get transgressed, and why? A tentative list of the plays includes Titus Andronicus, Richard III, 2 Henry IV, A Midsummer Night's Dream, As You Like It, Twelfth Night, Troilus and Cressida, King Lear, Antony and Cleopatra, Cymbeline, and The Tempest. We'll also read the sonnets and a longer narrative poem. There will be three assignments and a final paper; no exam, but we'll conclude one class every week with a brief response paper.


The Victorian Period

English 122

Section: 1
Instructor: Eichenlaub, Justin
Eichenlaub, Justin
Time: MWF 2-3
Location: NOTE NEW ROOM: 170 Barrows


Other Readings and Media

Charles Dickens: Oliver Twist; Wilkie Collins: The Woman in White; Robert Browning: Selected Poems; Charlotte Bronte: Jane Eyre; Criminals, Idiots, and Women: Victorian Writing by Women on Women; Henry Mayhew: London Labour and the London Poor; William Morris: News from Nowhere; Charles Darwin: On The Origin of Species; Jasper Fforde: The Eyre Affair

Description

In the years 1837 to 1901 British literary culture responded to and helped to shape a range of world-historic events, trends, and revolutions. During these years Darwin published his theory of natural selection and evolution, the industrial city was born and then quickly ‘reformed’ and sanitized, middle class suburbia first came into its own, and the New Woman entered the work force.

In this course we’ll investigate the relationship of novels, non-fiction prose, and poetry to these developments and consider how literature might be both a motive force in history and the ways in which literary and essayistic form responds to and resists the pull of the contemporary (which from our perspective is an issue of ‘periodization’). We’ll engage with the Victorians’ social and political contexts, including science and the status of women. We will play close attention to the determining power of class and the construction of work and labor. We will track the development of strategies of narration in several novels. The course will end with a contemporary novel, Neal Stephenson’s work of science fiction, Diamond Age (1995), a text which imagines the persistence of a version of Victorian culture and mores as the practice of a small, cultish band of ‘Neo-Victorians.’


The Contemporary Novel: The Novel Since 2000

English 125E

Section: 1
Instructor: Serpell, C. Namwali
Time: TTh 12:30-2
Location: NOTE NEW ROOM: F295 Haas School of Business (east side of campus)


Book List

Díaz, Junot: The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao; Foer, Jonathan Safran: Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close; Ishiguro, Kazuo: Never Let Me Go; McCarthy, Cormac: The Road; McCarthy, Tom: Remainder; McEwan, Ian: Atonement; Morrison, Toni: Home; Smith, Zadie: White Teeth

Description

We who study literature are perhaps always belated. This course aims to redefine at least one literary period: the “contemporary” novel, scholarship about which sometimes stretches as far back as novels written in the 1950s! I protest. It ought to mean novels now. And so: a survey of British and American novels written since 2000. That is, novels written during your lifetime. We will be interested in historical context, formal features, ways of knowing, and the ethical and political resonance of this literature. We will examine debates about the status of the novel, competing genres, and new technologies of reading. The reading will include eight novels, a few reviews, and published debates—journalistic and academic, measured and polemical—about the fate and fortunes of the contemporary novel. Reading one or more of the novels in advance is highly recommended. We will begin with White Teeth.


British Literature: 1900-1945

English 126

Section: 1
Instructor: Flynn, Catherine
Flynn, Catherine
Time: TTh 11-12:30
Location: NOTE NEW ROOM: 166 Barrows


Book List

Beckett, Samuel: Murphy; Conrad, Joseph: Lord Jim: A Tale; Eliot, T. S.: The Annotated Waste Land with Eliot’s Contemporary Prose; Ford, Ford Maddox: The Good Soldier; Forster, E. M.: Howards End; Joyce, James: A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man; Joyce, James: Ulysses; Rhys, J.: Good Morning, Midnight; Woolf, Virginia: Mrs. Dalloway; Yeats, W. B.: Collected Poems

Description

This survey will look at British and Irish literature written in the first half of the twentieth century, focusing on key works by major modernist figures. The course will explore the different aims and effects of modernist innovation and consider how changes in form, voice and subject matter relate to shifts in class, gender and economic structures and to the violence of war. In addition to the texts on the reading list, we will also read some short essays, stories and poems.


American Literature: Before 1800

English 130A

Section: 1
Instructor: Donegan, Kathleen
Time: MWF 1-2
Location: 20 Barrows


Book List

Bradford, W.: Of Plymouth Plantation; Brown, C.: Wieland, or The Transformation; Crevecoeur, H.: Letters from an American Farmer; Equiano, O.: The Interesting Narrative; Foster, H.: The Coquette; Franklin, B.: The Autobiography and Other Writings; Jefferson, T.: Notes on the State of Virginia; Mancall, P.: Envisioning America; Rowlandson, M.: The Sovereignty and Goodness of God; Williams, R. : A Key into the Language of America

Description

This course will survey the literatures of early America, from the tracts that envisioned British colonization to the novels written in the aftermath of the American Revolution. Although our focus is on Anglophone texts, we will consider colonial America as a place of encounter – a place where diversity was a given, negotiation was a necessity, and transformation was inescapable. Our topics will include contact and settlement, “translations” of Native American culture, religious and social formations, captivity narratives, natural history, print culture, the Atlantic slave trade, the writing of revolution, and the contested ideals of the new republic.  We will also explore the exceptional richness of form and genre in early American literature:  promotional tracts, histories, poetry, phrasebooks and dictionaries, sermons, autobiographies, science writing, protest literature, and the novel.  Throughout, we will pay special attention to how writing operated to forge new models of the self that could withstand and absorb the tumult of colonial life.  Authors will include Bradford, Bradstreet, Rowlandson, Franklin, Equiano, Jefferson, and the early American novelists Charles Brockden Brown and Hannah Webster Foster.

 

This course satisfies the pre-1800 requirement for the English major.


American Literature: 1865-1900

English 130C

Section: 1
Instructor: Breitwieser, Mitchell
Time: TTh 2-3:30
Location: 102 Moffitt


Book List

Chesnutt, Charles: The Marrow of Tradition; Chopin, Kate: The Awakening and Selected Short Stories; Crane, Stephen: Great Short Works; Howells, William Dean: A Hazard of New Fortunes; James, Henry: The Portrait of a Lady; Jewett, Sarah Orne: The Country of the Pointed Firs; Twain, Mark: A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court

Description

In the wake of the Civil War, six crises preoccupy American fiction: nationality, cities, race, wealth and misery, technology and gender. In this course we will explore the ways in which these areas of urgent concern intersect one another. Two seven-page essays, a final exam, and regular attendance will be required.

 

 


American Poetry

English 131

Section: 1
Instructor: O'Brien, Geoffrey G.
Time: TTh 3:30-5
Location: 56 Barrows


Book List

Ashbery, John: The Mooring of Starting Out; Hejinian, Lyn: My Life in the Nineties; Lerner, Ben: Mean Free Path; Rankine, Claudia: Don't Let Me Be Lonely; Toomer, Jean: Cane

Description

This survey of U.S. poetries will begin with Walt Whitman and Emily Dickinson and then touch down in expatriate and stateside modernisms, the Harlem Renaissance, the New York School, and Language Poetry, on our way to the contemporary. Rather than cover all major figures briefly, we’ll spend extended time with the work of a few: poets considered will include Paul Dunbar, Gertrude Stein, T. S. Eliot, Claude McKay, Jean Toomer, Langston Hughes, Frank O’Hara, John Ashbery, Lyn Hejinian, Claudia Rankine, and Ben Lerner. Along the way we’ll consider renovations and dissipations of conventional form and meter, the task and materials of the long poem, seriality, citationality, who and what counts as a poetic subject, and how U.S. poetries have imagined community over and against their actual Americas. In addition to the required books, some primary and secondary readings will be drawn from a Course Reader. There will be a take-home midterm, a term paper, and a final exam.


The American Novel

English 132

Section: 1
Instructor: Speirs, Kenneth
Time: MWF 1-2
Location: 155 Kroeber


Book List

Faulkner, William: As I Lay Dying; Fitzgerald, F. Scott: The Great Gatsby; Hemingway, Ernest: The Sun Also Rises; McCarthy, Cormac: The Road; Melville, Herman: Moby-Dick; Morrison, Toni: Beloved

Description

This course traces the formal and thematic development of the American novel, focusing on innovations in the novel’s form as it engages with history, identity, race, class and gender.  A principle goal of this course is to increase your knowledge of language use, style, symbol, metaphor, theme, structure and narrative.  We will also want to consider the writers’ lives, prevailing beliefs, and the various environments (literary, geographical, political, etc.) within which these writers worked.

Requirements: Reading responses, four essays, and a final exam.


Literature of American Cultures: Repression and Resistance

English 135AC

Section: 1
Instructor: Gonzalez, Marcial
Time: TTh 12:30-2
Location: 2060 Valley LSB


Book List

Allison, Dorothy: Bastard Out of Carolina; Baldwin, James: Go Tell It On The Mountain; Castillo, Ana: Sapogonia; Giardina, Denise: Storming Heaven; Jones, Gayl: Corregidora; Ozick, Cynthia: The Shawl; Rechy, John: City of Night; Ruiz, Ronald: Happy Birthday Jesus; Wideman, John: Philadelphia Fire

Description

In this course we will analyze representations of repression and resistance in nine novels, three each from the following three cultural groups: Chicanos/Chicanas, African Americans, and Euro-Americans.  We will examine various forms of repression--social, physical, and psychological--represented in these texts, and we will study the various ways these works resist repression.  (Please be forewarned: some of these works include graphic and disturbing representations of violence.)  Several questions inform the course theme:  What are the causes of repression?  What solutions, if any, do these works offer in response to the forms of repression they represent?  What is the relation, if any, between the negative effects of repression and the formation of a positive conception of cultural identity?  From a literary perspective:  What are the formal aspects of a literature of repression and resistance?  The comparative approach in this course will allow us to analyze the similarities and differences in the literatures of these three cultural groups. It will also provide us with a critical appreciation of the social significance and aesthetic quality of the literature.  In addition to the novels on the required reading list, we may also read short stories by Helena María Viramontes, James Baldwin, and Raymond Carver.  Assignments will include two papers and a mid-term. 

English 135AC satisfies UC Berkeley’s American Cultures requirement.


The Cultures of English: Literature of The Great War

English 139

Section: 1
Instructor: Jones, Donna V.
Time: MWF 2-3
Location: 122 Wheeler


Description

In the years following World War One, European intellectuals debated the implications of the new balance of power and the terms of the peace among the combatant nations, but they were haunted by the prospect of the decline of the West itself. A four-year global conflict that claimed 8.5 million lives and wounded 20 million soldiers, World War One destroyed any confidence that European history unfolded necessarily onward, upward, and progressively. World War One resulted not only in physical destruction but also the dissolution of world-views, mental coordinates, dominant images, and structuring metaphors of late-nineteenth century European thought. For example, the belated experiences of trauma and the dislocated speech of the shell-shocked soldier undermined the mechanist understanding of the mind as a mere calculator or chemical machine. The gradual unsettling of imperial authority also threw into question several ideological conceptions. Conscripts from throughout the colonized world participated in all aspects of this fully mechanized war and thus were exposed first-hand to the violent realities of interimperial rivalry.

The Great War was the watershed moment of modernity. In this course we will read literature that reveals to us how every aspect of life was transfigured by it.

The book list will include: Virginia Woolf: Mrs. Dalloway; The Penguin Book of First World War Poetry; Ernst Jünger: Storm of Steel; Paul Fussell: The Great War and Modern Memory; Leopold Senghor: Selected Poems W.E.B. DuBois: Dark Princess; and Gertrude Stein: Autobiography of Alice B. Toklas.


Modes of Writing

English 141

Section: 1
Instructor: Abrams, Melanie
Time: MW 3-4 + discussion sections F 3-4
Location: 141 McCone


Book List

Course packet available at Zee Zee Copy

Description

This course will introduce students to the study of creative writing – fiction, poetry, and drama.  Students will learn to talk critically about these genres and begin to feel comfortable and confident with their own writing of them.  Students will write in each of these genres and will partake in class workshops where their work will be edited and critiqued by other students in the class.

Please note that this class will first meet on Monday, August 27; discussion sections will not start being held until Friday, August 31.


Short Fiction

English 143A

Section: 1
Instructor: Kleege, Georgina
Time: MW 12-1:30
Location: 301 Wheeler


Book List

Ford, R. : The Granta Book of the American Short Story

Description

This class will be conducted as a writing workshop where students will submit and discuss their own short fiction.  We will also closely examine the work of published writers.  Students will complete 3 short writing assignments and approximately 40 pages of new fiction. 

To be considered for admission in this course, please submit 8-15 double-spaced pages of your fiction (no poetry, drama, screenplays or academic writing), along with an application form, to Professor Kleege’s mailbox in 322 Wheeler BY 4:00 P.M., TUESDAY, APRIL 17, AT THE LATEST.

Be sure to read the paragraph concerning creative writing courses on page 1 of this Announcement of Classes for further information regarding enrollment in such courses!


Short Fiction

English 143A

Section: 2
Instructor: Serpell, C. Namwali
Time: TTh 3:30-5
Location: 301 Wheeler


Book List

Mitchell, David: Cloud Atlas

Description

This workshop is designed to hone basic elements of fiction writing: grammar, diction, syntax, structure, plot, character, style, and so on. We will read a handful of short stories from a coursepack, David Mitchell’s Cloud Atlas, and each other’s work in progress. Admitted students will each compose and revise at least 30 pages of prose fiction—in whatever number, size, and form of work suits the writer—over the course of the semester. Students will write formal responses on their peers’ writing in progress, perform one oral presentation, and submit short assignments involving the practical matters of a writing career. Attendance and participation are mandatory. 

To be considered for admission in this course, please submit 10 double-spaced pages of your prose fiction (no poetry, drama, screenplays, or academic work), along with an application form, to Professor Serpell's mailbox in 322 Wheeler by 4 P.M., TUESDAY, APRIL 17, AT THE LATEST.

Be sure to read the paragraph concerning creative writing courses on page 1 of this Announcement of Classes for further information regarding enrollment in such courses!


Verse

English 143B

Section: 1
Instructor: Hejinian, Lyn
Time: MW 4-5:30
Location: 301 Wheeler


Book List

Tuma, Keith: Anthology of Twentieth-Century British and Irish Poetry

Description

This seminar/workshop in the writing of poetry is intended for the exploration of contemporary solutions to long-standing, as well as recent, questions facing poets. Students in the class will undertake writing projects in relation to technical and thematic issues that seem to persist through modernist writings into those of the present. The purpose will be to take up the challenge of modernism (“make it new”) and that of late capitalism (“newness is old news”) to make literature of our own. This workshop is open to beginners as well as to students with some experience as poets. The instructor asks only that the students remember that writing poetry is a rigorously demanding undertaking.         

Please note: this version of English 143B will be closely affiliated with Prof. Charles Altieri’s 45C section 1 class; students in this 143B must be enrolled in (or, under special circumstances, auditing) that 45C class. This 143B/45C connection is intended to encourage critical rigor in poetry and creative thinking in criticism.

To be considered for admission to this class, please submit 5 photocopied pages of your poems, along with an application form, to Lyn Hejinian's box in 322 Wheeler, BY 4:00 P.M., TUESDAY, APRIL 17, AT THE LATEST.

Be sure to read the paragraph concerning creative writing courses on page 1 of this Announcement of Classes for further information regarding enrollment in such courses!

 


Verse

English 143B

Section: 2
Instructor: Shoptaw, John
Time: TTh 12:30-2
Location: 301 Wheeler


Other Readings and Media

Course Reader

Description

In this course you will conduct a progressive series of experiments in which you will explore some of the fundamental options for writing poetry today—aperture and closure; rhythmic sound patterning; sentence and line; short and long-lined poems; image & figure; stanza; poetic forms (haibun, villanelle, sestina, pantoum, ghazal, etc.); the first, second and third person (persona, address, drama, narrative, description); prose poetry, and revision.  Our emphasis will be on recent possibilities, but with an eye and ear to renovating traditions.  I have no “house style” and only one precept:  you can do anything, if you can do it.  You will write a poem a week, and we’ll discuss five or so in rotation (I’ll respond to every poem you write).  On alternate days, we’ll discuss recent illustrative poems drawn from our course reader.  If the past is any guarantee, the course will make you a better poet.

To be considered for admission to this course, please submit 5 photocopied pages of your poetry, along with an application form, to Professor Shoptaw's box in 322 Wheeler, BY 4:00 P.M., TUESDAY, APRIL 17, AT THE LATEST.

Be sure to read the paragraph concerning creative writing courses on page 1 of this Announcement of Classes for further information regarding enrollment in such courses!


Verse

English 143B

Section: 3
Instructor: Walsh, Catherine
Walsh, Catherine
Time: TTh 2-3:30
Location: 301 Wheeler


Other Readings and Media

A course reader

Description

A seminar in writing poetry. This will be a series of writer-on-writing facilitated sessions, providing opportunities for students writing, reading, and talking about a range of poetries, including their own work. There will be a strong, text-based interest in developing participants' individual voices.

To be considered for admission to this course, please submit 5 photocopied pages of your poetry, along with an application form, to Professor Walsh's box in 322 Wheeler, BY 4:00 P.M., TUESDAY, APRIL 17, AT THE LATEST.

Be sure to read the paragraph concerning creative writing courses on page 1 of this Announcement of Classes for further information regarding enrollment in such courses!


Special Topics: Poetry Writing in an Ecological Field of Composition

English 165

Section: 1
Instructor: Campion, John
Time: TTh 9:30-11
Location: 225 Wheeler


Other Readings and Media

Course Reader

Description

Among other issues associated with the composition of poetry, this class seeks to contend with the difficulties that arise from how a poem is displayed on the page. We will look at a number of poets, such as Cummings, Pound, and Olson, who have presented their poetry in inventive ways. We’ll read a number of essays, etc, and study artists whose forms provide useful ideas and guidance—using landscape architecture as model for a poetics of the page, for example.  Throughout the course, we will see how understanding ecological systems can help shape the work. We will, of course, critically examine one another's efforts. This practice is intended to help flesh out a neglected aspect of the discipline. Ultimately, the goal is to write poetry that registers its contents more fully, appropriately, and effectively.

All students will be required to write a short manuscript of poetry and critique work by others.


Special Topics: The Elizabethan Renaissance

English 165

Section: 2
Instructor: Honig, Elizabeth
Time: TTh 3:30-5 + one hour of disc. sec. (sec. 201: W 12-1, 2070 Valley LSB; sec. 202: W 9-10, 2066 Valley LSB)
Location: 102 Moffitt


Description

This course has two goals: to explore visual culture and the role of visuality in renaissance England, and to develop research skills. Elizabeth I's long reign saw a remarkable flowering of the arts. Her unique position as a female monarch surrounded by male courtiers produced a dynamic in which all artistic production seemed to reflect back upon her, the powerful focus of men's desires and aspirations. From the building of stately houses to the writing of poetry, a rhetoric of courtship and persuasion would underlie England's renaissance. Following on a long period of state-sponsored iconoclasm, the status of the visual arts and their relationship to verbal expression also had to be redefined. This course will consider the Elizabethan period in relation to culture under Elizabeth's father, Henry VIII, her brother and sister, and her Stuart heir James I. We will treat poetry, painting, and pageantry; rhetoric, architecture and urban development. We will also pay close attention to the applied and domestic arts--furnishings, clothing, embroidery. Writers and artists we will discuss will include Holbein, More, Hilliard, Sidney, Smythson, Jones, Jonson, Van Dyck and Rubens. This course involves interdisciplinary, research-based learning. The evaluation of your work will be based not on examinations but on a multi-part project, on which you will have extensive, structured guidance from the professor, the GSI, and the library staff. You will write an original interdisciplinary research paper using primary sources available online.

This class is cross-listed with History of Art 169A.

This section of English 165 satisfies the pre-1800 requirement for the English major.

 


Special Topics: 18th-Century British Travel Writing

English 166

Section: 1
Instructor: Bode, Christoph
Time: TTh 11-12:30
Location: 136 Barrows


Other Readings and Media

Lady Mary Wortley Montagu: The Turkish Embassy Letters; Laurence Sterne: A Sentimental Journey; Georg(e) Forster: A Voyage Round the World (excerpts); Mungo Park: Travels in the Interior of Africa; Lady Elizabeth Craven: A Journey Through the Crimea to Constantinople; Mary Wollstonecraft: Letters Written During a Short Residence in Sweden, Norway, and Denmark. All these texts can be downloaded from Eighteenth-Century Catalogue Online (ECCO), but there are also fine paperback editions of Montagu (Virago), Sterne (Penguin or Oxford University Press), and Wollstonecraft (Penguin).

Description

This course is based on the idea that if there is one genre in which ideas of identity--ideas of how one's own self and culture are related to other selves and other cultures--are systematically negotiated, then this must be the hybrid genre of travel writing, because travel writing is constituted by a discursive processing of encounters with 'the Other.' We shall look at some paradigmatic 18th-century texts, and we will try to answer questions like, What difference does it make whether a European writer travels in Europe or outside Europe? Whether alone or in company? Whether the writer is female or male? Whether the subjectivity of the writer is highlighted or toned down? Whether it is written during the journey or long afterwards? By which comparisons and metaphorics is alterity produced and processed? What is the importance of the form of the travelogue (e.g., whether it is in letters or written as a scientific report on a journey of exploration)? The vanishing point of all these questions is, of course, how in the eighteenth century Europe's idea of itself emerges from its encounters with others.

This section of English 166 satisfies the pre-1800 requirement for the English major.


Special Topics: Specters of the Atlantic

English 166

Section: 2
Instructor: Ellis, Nadia
Time: TTh 12:30-2
Location: 175 Barrows


Book List

Austen: Mansfield Park; Brodber: Louisiana; Bronte: Jane Eyre; Hartman: Lose Your Mother; James: The Book of Night Women; McCraney: The Brother/Sister Plays; Morrison: Beloved; Philip: Zong; Rhys: Wide Sargasso Sea

Other Readings and Media

We will screen films and a Course Reader will offer supplementary texts.

Description

The large scale transportation of Africans to the Americas is a signal fact of modernity in the West. The trouble is that we both do and do not know this. One of the most salient, confounding aspects of life in the Caribbean and the United States, in old imperial centers like London, in Latin America and in Africa itself, is that the history of slavery is all at once everywhere we can see and everywhere hidden. Haunt, then, becomes a mode of reckoning—specters emerge where facts are repressed. In this course we will read texts in which the specter of slavery haunts the narrative, drives the plot, distorts language, or possesses us as readers. Since the fact of the ghost disrupts time we will read purposely ahistorically: works published during the period of slavery (by Austen and Bronte, for example) are juxtaposed with those published in the contemporary era by writers (such as Toni Morrison and Marlon James) who contend with slavery's afterlife. To enhance our understanding of the spectral as it relates to black history we will also read extraordinary theorists and critics including Benjamin, Derrida, Jacqui Alexander, Avery Gordon, and Ian Baucom, to whose ambitious study of the tragedy of the slave ship Zong I owe the title of this course. 


Special Topics: Engaging the Play: Being the Player

English 166

Section: 3
Instructor: Gotanda, Philip Kan
Time: TTh 2-3:30
Location: 130 Wheeler


Book List

Hwang, David: Yellow Face; Baker, Annie: The Aliens; Cruz, Nilo: Anna In The Tropics; Gotanda, Philip: No More Cherry Blossoms; Gotanda, Philip: Yankee Dawg You Die ; Parks, Suzan-Lori: TopdogUnderdog; Ruhl, Sarah: In The Next Room or The Vibrator Play; Wallace, Naomi: One Flea Spare; Wilson, August: Joe Turner's Come and Gone

Description

The course will explore inventive ways of engaging the theater text.

Students will read from a selection of plays and be expected to give presentations analyzing theme, story, as well as point of view of the playwright. This will be followed with students participating in the actual rehearsing and in-class performing of the discussed plays. This experiencing of the theater process will give insight as to how theater text spoken aloud, put on its feet, performed, can afford another kind of "reading" of what is written on page. The material to be covered will be drawn from contemporary American plays with an emphasis on Asian American themes and Professor Gotanda’s works. It is preferred that students not have a performance background.  Grading will be determined by commitment to participation, not “expertise” of performance. Classes will be conducted to allow for a friendly, comfortable performing environment. Study may be supplemented by video, guest lecturers – live and by skype. The vantage point of Professor Gotanda as a playwright working in contemporary American theater will lend a living, in the field, dynamic to the class.


Special Topics: Hitchcock's Secret Style

English 166

Section: 4
Instructor: Miller, D.A.
Time: MW 2-3:30 + films Thurs. 6-9 P.M.
Location: 300 Wheeler


Book List

course reader with Rothman, Zizek, et al.; Spoto, Donald: The Art of Alfred Hitchcock; Truffaut, François: Hitchcock

Description

It is the claim of “Hitchcock’s Secret Style” that the work of this famous filmmaker, viewed all over the world and analyzed ad infinitum, has only barely begun to be looked at.  DVD technology, by facilitating a closer attention to Hitchcock’s images, lets us uncover a secret—and baffling—host of “hidden pictures.”  I call these pictures secret because they are visible but inconspicuous, typically obscured from view by a more obvious focus given to our attention.  And I call them baffling because, while demonstrably intentional, they also seem to be pointless; the hidden pictures no not enhance either Hitchcock’s thematic content or his recognizable style; on the contrary, they distract us from both these things.  They are, in a word, counter-productive, and—because the social order demands productivity—it is in this counter-productivity that one grasps the profound anti-social character of classic cinema’s most popular filmmaker.

Please note that this class will first meet on Monday, August 27; there will be no film screening on Thursday, August 23.


Literature and Disability

English 175

Section: 1
Instructor: Kleege, Georgina
Time: MW 4-5:30
Location: 122 Wheeler


Book List

Barker, P.: Regeneration; Dunn, K.: Geek Love; Finger, A.: Call Me Ahab; Friel, B.: Molly Sweeney; Lewis, V.A.: Beyond Victims and Villains; Medoff, M.: Children of a Lesser God; Shakespeare, W. : Richard III

Other Readings and Media

A selection of short fiction will be available on b-space.

Description

We will examine the ways disability is depicted in a diverse range of texts.  Sometimes disability is used as a metaphor or symbol of something else.  In other cases, texts explore disability as a lived experience.  We will analyze the representation of disability as it intersects with other cultural factors such as gender, class, race, economics, politics, etc. Through your close reading of these texts you will sharpen your critical thinking skills and develop methods to analyze representations of disability in other texts, films, popular culture, and public policy.  Assignments will include two 5-8 page papers, a take-home final exam and a group presentation project.

This is a core course for the Disability Studies Minor.


Literature and Linguistics

English 179

Section: 1
Instructor: Hanson, Kristin
Time: TTh 12:30-2
Location: new room: 104 Barrows


Book List

Heany, S.: Beowulf: A New Verse Translation (bilingual edition); Woolf, V.: Mrs. Dalloway

Description

The medium of literature is language. This course will explore this relationship through a survey of literary forms defined by linguistic forms, and through consideration of how these literary forms are both like and unlike forms of non-literary language. These literary forms include meter; rhyme and alliteration; syntactic parallelism and other syntactic structures special to poetry; formulas of oral composition; and special narrative uses of pronouns, tenses and other subjective features of language to express point of view and render 'represented speech and thought'. The emphasis will be on literature in English, but comparisons with literature in other languages will also be drawn. No knowledge of linguistics will be presupposed, but linguistic concepts will be introduced, explained and used.


Short Story

English 180H

Section: 1
Instructor: Chandra, Vikram
Time: TTh 2-3:30
Location: 3 LeConte


Other Readings and Media

A course reader, to be purchased from Zee Zee Copy.

Description

“The lyf so short, the crafte so longe to lerne…”

                                                -- Chaucer

This course will investigate how authors craft stories, so that both non-writers and writers may gain a new perspective on reading stories.   In thinking of short stories as artifacts produced by humans, we will consider – without any assertions of certainty – how those people may have experienced themselves and their world, and how history and culture may have participated in the making of these stories. 

So, in this course we will explore the making, purposes, and pleasures of the short story form.  We will read – widely, actively and carefully – many published stories from various countries in order to begin to understand the conventions of the form, and how this form may function in diverse cultures.  Students will write a short story and revise it; engaging with a short story as a writer will aid them in their investigations as readers and critics.  Students will also write two analytical papers about stories we read in class.  Attendance is mandatory.


Lyric Verse

English 180L

Section: 1
Instructor: Jordan, Joseph P
Time: MWF 12-1
Location: 56 Barrows


Other Readings and Media

A course reader.

Recommended:  The Norton Anthology of Poetry  (The Norton is recommended and not required because the poems in it that we will discuss are widely available and are probably included in anthologies that you already own.)

Description

This course is an immersion in the history of lyric verse in English. We will read most of the standard warhorses. The focus of the course will be on the poems as poems, on what they do to minds in the time it takes to read or hear them, and only incidentally on their authors and the historical pressures that shaped them. The aim is to see why certain poems persist in the culture and on syllabuses like this one, while thousands of others – many of which say apparently similar things in similar ways – get attention for a while and then are forgotten.


Research Seminar: Literature and the Post-human

English 190

Section: 1
Instructor: Jones, Donna V.
Time: MW 10:30-12
Location: 301 Wheeler


Description

Does a life become a human life through the possibility of narrating a coherent story about a bounded person through time? This class explores the connection between narrative and the human against the backdrop of technological developments that threaten to unravel a diachronic unity of time over time and thus implode the coherence of the human as such. We will read novels that explore the breaks in biography afforded by the possibility of various enhancements that enable apparently extra-human powers and the possibility of monstrous, inhuman births of posthuman selves created from the moment of conception. How are we to make sense of ‘enhanced’ and ‘artificial’ lives; how far do the older narratives of Prometheus, Faust and Frankenstein take us in the twenty-first century? Are we taking powers reserved for the Gods or sacrificing our soul or humanness for extraordinary powers; will we make monsters of ourselves? Are there other than dystopian possibilities?

In works of speculative fiction, how is the post-human imagined? How do such imaginings change our conception of the merely or all too human, the lot of the vast majority on this earth? Are there new insidious imaginings of the subhuman implicit in speculative fiction?  Or will the person merely disappear or dissipate--we will also explore the dissolution of the boundaries of a stable self into ever-shifting networks of possibility.

I am interested in creating the critical space to imagine the future beyond the poles of technophobia and breathless optimism.

Class discussion will draw on literary theory, science studies, futurology, race and postcolonial studies, gender studies and philosophy. Readings will include David Mitchell: Cloud Atlas: A Novel;, China Mieville: Perdido Street Station; Philip Dick: Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?; Mary Shelley: Frankenstein, or the Modern Prometheus; Villuers de l’Isle-Adam: “The Future Eve”; Cary Wolfe: What is Posthumanism? (excerpts); Paul Ricoeur: Time and Narrative (excerpts); H. Porter Abbott: The Cambridge Introduction to Narrative.

Please read the paragraph on page 2 of the instructions area of this Announcement of Classes for more details about enrolling in or wait-listing for this course.

Please click here for more information about enrollment in English 190.


Research Seminar: Too-Close Reading: Poe and Others

English 190

Section: 2
Instructor: Miller, D.A.
Time: MW 11-12:30
Location: 300 Wheeler


Book List

course reader; Barthes, Roland: S/Z; Poe, Edgar Allan: Poetry and Tales; Poe, Edgar Allen: Essays and Reviews

Other Readings and Media

Rear Window (Hitchcock); Blow Up (Antonioni)

Description

Here are the main things we experience from within the reading practice scapegoated as “too close.” The first is that it is worse than useless: the futility, the irrelevance of its mountainous molehills demoralizes us all the more profoundly as the question “what is the point of such excessive attention?” invariably triggers the far more broadly discouraging question “what is the point of anything?”  And the second thing we feel is that this same spirit-killing practice is nonetheless irresistible, as if getting too close to the text we are reading were a compulsion hard-wired into the activity, at whatever chosen range, of reading itself.  Too-close reading cannot, then, be plausibly quarantined as the nonsensical luxury of tenured literature professors, or a mere (now obsolescent) phase in literary studies; it is the necessary liability of even the commonest reader, who, sooner or later, is fated to fall into the practice of what we rightly call “reading to death.”  For it is with a certain death that too-close reading seems to threaten us: the death not just of the so-called life of the text, but also of social utility, psychosexual integrity, and sense-making of any kind.  (Perhaps this is also why—in fiction at any rate—the redemption of too-close reading, its conversion into a properly productive reading, typically involves rationalizing an otherwise unaccountable death: the solution of a murder case.)

The course takes up its topic in three distinct observances: first, we read in the literary tradition inaugurated for the modern period by the stories of Edgar Allan Poe, where excessive attention is embraced in all its antisocial pathology and brilliance.  Next, we explore the literary-critical tradition of super-close textual analysis also inaugurated by Poe, but continuing in academicized form from Leo Spitzer’s Stylistics to Roland Barthes’ Poststructuralism and De Man’s Deconstruction, to certain critical-writing experiments of our own day.  Finally, we look at some too-close reading practices characteristic of 21st-century mass culture: fandom, 24/7 “crisis” news coverage, etc.

Please read the paragraph on page 2 of the instructions area of this Announcement of Classes for more details about enrolling in or wait-listing for this course.

Please click here for more information about enrollment in English 190.


Research Seminar: Sentimentality

English 190

Section: 3
Instructor: Carmody, Todd
Time: MW 1:30-3
Location: 301 Wheeler


Book List

Brown, William Hill: The Power of Sympathy and The Coquette; Douglass, Frederick and Jacobs, Harriet: Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, an American Slave, and Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl; Harper, Frances E. E.: Iola Leroy, or, Shadows Uplifted; Howells, William Dean: An Imperative Duty; Hurst, Fannie: Imitation of Life; Stowe, Harriet Beecher: Uncle Tom's Cabin; Wilson, Harriet: Our Nig, or, Sketches from the Life of a Free Black

Description

In this seminar, we will examine the place of sentimentality in American literature of the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Considering works of fiction, poetry, and performance, we will ask how and why certain kinds of feeling—and suffering in particular—have become central to the articulation of American national identity. By way of introduction, our readings will survey the migration of sentimental fiction to the United States in the 1780s, the rise of abolitionist and indigenous rights discourse in the 1830s, and the genre’s subsequent entwinement with the nascent consumer cultures and commodity forms of the early twentieth century. Our focus will then be on how sentimentality develops as an identifiable set of formal conventions, rhetorical poses, and political strategies from the mid-nineteenth century onward. We will pay particular attention to how sentimental literature, in its various guises, seeks to enable identification across boundaries of race, gender, and class. What kinds of politics do spectacles of emotion enable? What kinds of politics do they foreclose? Other topics of concern will include sympathy, mourning, nostalgia, melodrama, the cultural logic of separate spheres, religion, protest, and historical memory. 

Over the course of the semester, students will learn hands-on research methodology, complete an annotated bibliography, and write a substantial research paper. Authors to be read may include Catherine Maria Sedgwick, Harriet Beecher Stowe, Walt Whitman, Frederick Douglass, Harriet Jacobs, Richard Wright, James Baldwin, Kate Chopin, Charlotte Perkins Gilman, W.E.B. Du Bois, Hart Crane, Edna St. Vincent Millay, Countee Cullen, Langston Hughes, Edna Ferber, Fannie Hurst, and others. We will also be reading broadly in the fields of gender and sexuality, critical race, disability, and affect studies.

Please read the paragraph on page 2 of the instructions area of this Announcement of Classes for more details about enrolling in or wait-listing for this course.

Please click here for more information about enrollment in English 190.


Research Seminar: Poetry and the Archive

English 190

Section: 5
Instructor: Pugh, Megan
Time: note new time: MW 9-10:30
Location: note new room: 301 Wheeler


Book List

Eliot, T.S.: The Waste Land: A Facsimile and Transcript of the Original Drafts...; Howe, Susan: Souls of the Labadie Tract; Philip, M. NourbeSe: Zong!; Reznikoff, Charles: Holocaust; Schiff, Robyn: Revolver; Wright, C. D. : One With Others

Other Readings and Media

A course reader, including writing by Theodor Adorno, Walter Benjamin, Hayden White, Fredric Jameson, Marjorie Perloff, Muriel Rukeyser, Hayden White, and William Carlos Williams.

Description

This is a class about poets who have gone looking for the muse. They’ve found her in the form of libraries, photographs, legal records, interviews, websites, advertisements, and material artifacts, and have used these archival materials to shape their own artistic creations. All the poems we’ll read, in some form or another, contain history—a trait that, according to Ezra Pound’s definition, makes them epics. Yet many of these poems resist the impulse to encapsulate a culture, or even to present a linear narrative, and some present the kinds of strong, individual feelings we tend to associate with lyric poetry. We’ll explore the cross-pollination of these genres from the early twentieth to twenty-first centuries, as well as the forms poets have lifted, or altered, from the archive. Throughout the semester, we’ll ask what it means for poets to do documentary and historical work. What is the relationship between poetry and fact? What are a poet’s responsibilities to the people or events he or she documents? How might poetry engage with the past differently than, say, a film or a history book? What can poetic engagement with history tell us about history itself?

You’ll have a series of short writing assignments throughout the semester, leading up to either a 20-page research paper or archival poetry project. Our last few meetings will serve as workshops for your papers or projects, with each student assigning reading and facilitating class discussion.

Please read the paragraph on page 2 of the instructions area of this Announcement of Classes for more details about enrolling in or wait-listing for this course.

Please click here for more information about enrollment in English 190.


Research Seminar: Utopian & Dystopian Stories and Movies

English 190

Section: 8
Instructor: Starr, George A.
Time: W 6-9 P.M.
Location: new room: 121 Latimer


Book List

Atwood, Margaret: Oryx and Crake; Bellamy, Edward: Looking Backward 2000-1887; Dick, Philip K.: Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?; Gilman, Charlotte P.: Herland; Huxley, Aldous: Brave New World; Morris, William: News from Nowhere; Orwell, George: 1984; Wells, H. G.: Three Prophetic Novels; Zamyatin, Yevgeny: We

Description

Most Utopian authors are more concerned with persuading readers of the social or political merits of their schemes than with the "merely" literary qualities of their writing.  Although some Utopian writing has succeeded in the sense of making converts, and inspiring readers to try to realize the ideal society, most has had limited practical impact, yet has managed to provoke readers in various ways--for instance, as a kind of imaginative fiction that comments on "things as they are" only indirectly, with fantasy and satire in varying doses. Among the critical questions posed by such material are the problematic status of fiction that is not primarily mimetic, but written in the service of some ulterior purpose; the shifting relationships between what is and what authors think might be or ought to be; how to create the new and strange other than by recombining the old and familiar; and so on. We will consider anti-Utopian as well as Utopian books, and a few films such as Lang’s Metropolis, Chaplin’s Modern Times, Gilliam’s Brazil and the like. Required writing will consist of a single long paper; there will be no quizzes or exams, but seminar attendance and participation will be expected, and will affect grades.

Please read the paragraph on page 2 of the instructions area of this Announcement of Classes for more details about enrolling in or wait-listing for this course.

Please click here for more information about enrollment in English 190.


Research Seminar: The Urban Postcolonial

English 190

Section: 9
Instructor: Ellis, Nadia
Time: TTh 9:30-11
Location: 222 Wheeler


Book List

Abani, Chris: Graceland; Chandra, Vikram: Love and Longing in Bombay; Channer (ed): Kingston Noir; Cole, Teju: Open City; O'Neill, Joseph: Netherland; Rhodes-Pitts, Sharifa: Harlem is Nowhere; Smith, Zadie: White Teeth; Vladislavic, Ivan: Portrait With Keys: Johannesburg Unlocked

Other Readings and Media

Course Reader will provide critical reading as well as other fictional texts.

Films: Nair, Salaam Bombay; Boyle, Slumdog Millionaire; Henzell, The Harder They Come; Hood, Tsotsi; Van der Haak, Lagos/Koolhas; Elgood and Letts, Dancehall Queen 

 

Description

For reasons to do with some of its most canonical texts (Achebe’s Things Fall Apart being the most proffered example), postcolonial literature is often thought to present a conflict between “tradition” and “modernity,” a conflict sometimes imaged as the peaceful village intruded upon by the demands of the bustling metropolis. As it turns out, urban landscapes are key staging grounds for the terms, claims, and experiences of postcoloniality. With case studies from very different cities—Kingston, Lagos, Bombay, London, and New York—we will explore how writers and artists present postcolonial subjects creating, making use of, and contending with metropolitan spaces. Here writers and artists use urban settings to open up conversations around history, empire, identity, and belonging. Course themes will include creolization and hybridity; ritual and performance; the politics and meaning of wandering; the politics and aesthetics of space; gender and sexuality; and yes, even tradition and modernity, but remixed. An open and on-going question concerns the relevance of the term postcolonial in the US space, which students will be able to explore in a research paper on the Bay Area.

Please read the paragraph on page 2 of the instructions area of this Announcement of Classes for more details about enrolling in or wait-listing for this course.

Please click here for more information about enrollment in English 190.


Research Seminar: John Clare: A Peasant Naturalist Among the Romantic Poets

English 190

Section: 10
Instructor: Hass, Robert L.
Time: TTh 9:30-11
Location: 301 Wheeler


Description

John Clare was an uneducated farm laborer, a contemporary of Keats, who became very briefly a very famous poet in the 1820's in the wake of the great years of Burns, Byron, Wordsworth, Coleridge, and Shelley.  He published three books, continued to live a rural village life, went mad at about forty, and was confined to an asylum where he kept writing poems for another twenty-five years. Much of his later work went unpublished until the 1980's. He is possibly the greatest nature poet of the Romantic era and a good deal of his work is completely unknown but now available to be read. This class will locate Clare among the English poets of his time, in relation to the deep upheavals of rural life in England in his years wrought by the industrial revolution and the enclosing of what had been common lands, in relation to the intellectual revolution going on in the study of natural history, and mostly will read Clare's poems to see what's there.

Please read the paragraph on page 2 of the instructions area of this Announcement of Classes for more details about enrolling in or wait-listing for this course.

 

Please click here for more information about enrollment in English 190.


Research Seminar: Environmental Poetry and Poetics

English 190

Section: 11
Instructor: Shoptaw, John
Time: TTh 11-12:30
Location: 222 Wheeler


Other Readings and Media

Course Reader

Description

I have emarked on this course to help us think about an emergent situation for poets—the earth in crisis.  In this seminar we will explore how poets represent, and think about their place in, their natural environment.  Our primary focus will be American literature, from the nineteenth century to the present.  We will read such essayists as Emerson and Thoreau, and such poets as Whitman, Dickinson, Frost, Moore, Stevens, Jeffers, Snyder, Merwin, Ammons, Ryan, Hass, Glück, and Graham.  For context and alternatives, we will also consider English and Anglophone poets (e.g., Wordsworth, Coleridge, Tennyson, Hopkins, Lawrence, Muldoon, Kinsella) and theorists (e.g., Darwin, Ruskin).  Topics (so far) include the representation of the natural world, Nature, creation and evolution, abstraction and specification, place, species (extinction), and global warming.  We will be guided in part by essays in ecocriticism and ecopoetics.  We will go where the poetry takes us.

Please read the paragraph on page 2 of the instructions area of this Announcement of Classes for more details about enrolling in or wait-listing for this course.

Please click here for more information about enrollment in English 190.


Research Seminar: Ben Jonson, Robert Herrick, and the Cavalier Poets

English 190

Section: 13
Instructor: No instructor assigned yet.
Time: MW 9-10:30
Location: 305 Wheeler


Other Readings and Media

Ben Jonson and the Cavalier Poets; a course reader

Description

This seminar will focus on Jonson’s and Herrick’s verse, particularly on the openly frivolous poems. Our aim will be to come to conclusions about what these poems do that gives pleasure. We will also think about the usefulness and accuracy of the distinction between “Jonson-like” and “Donne-like” poems that a course like this one rests on. And we’ll end by considering possible similarities between Renaissance wit and the wordplay often found in country music song lyrics.

This section of English 190 satisfies the pre-1800 requirement for the English major.

Please read the paragraph on page 2 of the instructions area of this Announcement of Classes for more details about enrolling in or wait-listing for this course.

Please click here for more information about enrollment in English 190.


Research Seminar: Animals in Literature and Theory

English 190

Section: 15
Instructor: Eichenlaub, Justin
Eichenlaub, Justin
Time: note new time: MW 4-5:30
Location: note new location: 222 Wheeler


Other Readings and Media

The required texts include The Lives of Animals (J.M. Coetzee); The Question of the Animal from Heidegger to Derrida(Matthew Calarco); When the Killing’s Done (T.C. Boyle); The Island of Dr. Moreau (H.G. Wells); How the Dead Dream (Lydia Millet); The Companion Species Manifesto (Donna Harraway); Philosophy and Animal Life (Stanley Cavell, Cary Wolfe, et. al.);Eating Animals (Jonathan Safran Foer) and a reader / collection of online articles; the course will also require a $10 admission ticket to the Oakland Zoo.

Description

This course engages the question of the animal through novels, poetry, philosophy, theory, film, painting and photography, and popular culture.  Our approach will be to examine and track major trends in the burgeoning field of animal studies, allowing us to think about how animals are represented in cultural products and how contemporary philosophers and theorists are re-imagining human-animal relations.

To rethink the being and ‘meaning’ of animals also entails revisiting the idea of ‘the human.’  While this class engages with fictional and philosophical questions, we’re going to take the everyday, embodied repercussions of these ideas seriously.

Some of our particular topics will include the relationship of literary and artistic form to ethical arguments (particularly in Coetzee’s Lives of Animals and Safran Foer’s Eating Animals); questions of what role animals should play in our lives through Donna Harraway’s ideas of companion species; Franz Kafka’s short story “Report to an Academy,” about a humanistic ape; Lydia Millet’s powerful novel How the Dead Dream which links questions of species extinctions with human loss; and we’ll visit the Oakland Zoo to consider this eminently-Victorian and colonial means of ‘making the animal visible.’

Please read the paragraph on page 2 of the instructions area of this Announcement of Classes for more details about enrolling in or wait-listing for this course.

Please click here for more information about enrollment in English 190.


Research Seminar: Film Noir and Neo-Noir

English 190

Section: 16
Instructor: Bader, Julia
Time: TTh 5:30-7 P.M. + films Thurs. 7-10 P.M.
Location: new room: 106 Dwinelle


Book List

Kaplan, E.: Women in Film Noir; Martin, R.: Mean Streets and Raging Bulls; Silver & Ursini, eds.: Film Noir Reader 4; Telotte, J.: Voices in the Dark

Description

We will examine film noir’s influence on neo-noir and its relationship to “classical” Hollywood cinema, as well as its history, theory and generic markers, while analyzing in detail the major films in this area. The course will also be concerned with the social and cultural background of the 40's, the representation of femininity and masculinity, and the spread of Freudianism.

Please read the paragraph on page 2 of the instructions area of this Announcement of Classes for more details about enrolling in or wait-listing for this course.

Please click here for more information about enrollment in English 190.


Research Seminar: Narrating Health--An Introduction to the Medical Humanities

English 190

Section: 17
Instructor: Bednarska, Dominika
Time: MW 4-5:30
Location: 225 Wheeler


Other Readings and Media

Course Reader (location TBD); additional texts may be added.

Description

What is the relationship between medicine and the humanities? How do literature and medicine relate to one another? How do texts create ideas about health and wellness, illness and disability? This course will serve as an introduction to many issues at the intersection of medicine and the humanities. Topics include the history of medicine; medicine, race and gender; medicine and mental illness; and the relationship of the medical humanities to disability studies. It is intended both for humanities students who have an interest in the way medicine and illness are narrated as well as science and medical students who are interested in gaining a broader perspective within their medical and scientific training. Readings may include work by Audre Lorde, Charlotte Perkins, Sylvia Plath, Michel Foucault, Rita Charon, Arthur Frank, and others. Writing assignments will consist of one to two longer papers. Topics will be self-designed, and there will be some focus on the writing and research process.

Please read the paragraph on page 2 of the instructions area of this Announcement of Classes for more details about enrolling in or wait-listing for this course.
 

Please click here for more information about enrollment in English 190.


Research Seminar: The New Journalism and the Nonfiction Novel

English 190

Section: 18
Instructor: Gordon, Zachary
Time: note new time: TTh 5-6:30
Location: note new location: 206 Wheeler


Book List

Capote, T.: In Cold Blood; Didion, J.: Slouching Towards Bethlehem; Herr, M.: Dispatches; Hersey, J.: Hiroshima; Mailer, N.: The Armies of the Night: History as a Novel, the Novel as History; Wolfe, T.: The New Journalism

Description

This course focuses on the intersection of literature and journalism, with particular attention to the emergence of the New Journalism. The genre, defined in terms of its application of literary techniques to news reporting, often constructs stories around scenes, employs extended dialogue, portrays another's thoughts, or incorporates the author's subjectivity, all the while remaining confined to verifiable facts. Over the course of the semester we'll both examine the way our different authors deploy such techniques and place their works and the genre as a whole in historical context. We will also examine the category in more theoretical terms, interrogating its stability and self-proclaimed novelty.

Please read the paragraph on page 2 of the instructions area of this Announcement of Classes for more details about enrolling in or wait-listing for this course.
 

Please click here for more information about enrollment in English 190.


Honors Course

English H195A

Section: 1
Instructor: Falci, Eric
Time: TTh 11-12:30
Location: 305 Wheeler


Book List

Eagleton, Terry: How to Read a Poem; Joyce, James: The Dead; Wood, James: How Fiction Works; Woolf, Virginia: Mrs. Dalloway

Description

This two-semester course will prepare you to write, and will facilitate the writing of, an honors thesis.  In the fall semester, we will take a broad view of literary study and scholarship, working through a series of methods, theories, and practices.  After an overview of some key issues, we will familiarize ourselves with a range of theoretical and literary-historical modes by focusing on a few exemplary primary texts and a selection of essays and articles in conjunction with those texts.  We will read some poetry, a bit of short fiction, and a novel; we will also look at a film and another dramatic or performance work.  As the semester progresses, you will begin to shape and refine your thesis topic, in preparation to research and write your thesis in the spring semester.  In addition to the books listed above, there will be a course reader containing poetry, short fiction, and critical essays.

Students who satisfactorily complete H195A-B (the Honors Course) may choose to waive the seminar requirement.

Enrollment is limited and a written application, a copy of your college transcript(s), a list of your current courses, and a photocopy of a critical paper that you wrote for another class are due BY 4:00 P.M., TUESDAY, APRIL 17; be sure to read the paragraph on page 2 of this Announcement of Classes regarding enrollment in the  Honors Course!


Honors Course

English H195A

Section: 2
Instructor: Saul, Scott
Time: TTh 3:30-5
Location: 109 Wheeler


Book List

Eagleton, Terry: How to Read a Poem; Joyce, James: The Dead; Wood, James: How Fiction Works; Woolf, Virginia: Mrs. Dalloway

Other Readings and Media

There will be at least one packet of short stories and critical readings, to be picked up at the beginning of the term.

Description

English H195A is the first part of a two-semester sequence for those English majors writing honors theses. It is designed to give students the critical tools and practical skills to write a strong essay, in the spring semester, that will have a greater scope than any essay they've written before.

The course will begin with some ground-clearing critical works by James Wood (How Fiction Works) and Terry Eagleton (How to Read a Poem), then will move into case studies of central literary and artistic figures, such as Emily Dickinson, Virginia Woolf, James Joyce, Francis Ford Coppola, and others. 

Throughout, we'll be thinking practically about how to write scintillating, cogent essays: how to open up one's research and then settle in on a topic; how to find and use primary archives; how to machete through the thickets of secondary criticism and find one's voice as a critic; how to compose critical prose that is lively, cogent, and seductive to the reader. 

Students who satisfactorily complete H195A-B (the Honors Course) may choose to waive the seminar requirement.

Enrollment is limited and a written application, a copy of your college transcript(s), a list of your current courses, and a photocopy of a critical paper that you wrote for another class are due BY 4:00 P.M., TUESDAY, APRIL 17; be sure to read the paragraph on page 2 of this Announcement of Classes regarding enrollment in the Honors Course!

 

 


Graduate Courses

Graduate students from other departments and exceptionally well-prepared undergraduates are welcome in English graduate courses (except for English 200 and 375) insofar as limitations of class size allow. Graduate courses are usually limited to 15 students; courses numbered 250 are usually limited to 10.

When demand for a graduate course exceeds the maximum enrollment limit, the instructor will determine priorities for enrollment and inform students of his/her decisions at the second class meeting. Prior enrollment does not guarantee a place in a graduate course that turns out to be oversubscribed on the first day of class; fortunately, this situation does not arise very often.


Problems in the Study of Literature

English 200

Section: 1
Instructor: Francois, Anne-Lise
Time: MW 12-1:30
Location: 305 Wheeler


Book List

Norton Anthology of Theory and Criticism

Description

Approaches to literary study, including textual analysis, scholary methodology and bibliography, critical theory and practice.


Graduate Readings: 20th-Century Poetry

English 203

Section: 1
Instructor: Altieri, Charles F.
Time: MW 1:30-3
Location: 305 Wheeler


Book List

Ashbery, John: Collected Poetry; Hegel, F.: Phenomenology of Spirit; Pound, Ezra: Gaudier-Brzska; Stevens, Wallace: Collected Poetry and Prose; Wittgenstein, Ludwig: Culture and Value; Wittgenstein, Ludwig: Major Works

Other Readings and Media

  There will be texts on bspace.

Description

This course will be devoted to how specific philosophical texts can help us think about models of authorship and reading typified by Pound, Yeats,  Stevens, and Ashbery, but with I hope significant implications for most recent poetry.  We will read Nietzsche on knowledge, value, and morality in relation to Pound (his work from 1912-25); Hegel on concepts of expression and perhaps ethics in relation to selections from Yeats; and Wittgenstein on expression, confession, display, and aspect seeing in relation to Stevens and to Ashbery (primarily to imagine how indeterminacy can be a valued state).  Participants will be expected to produce one class project and review one as well as a twenty-page paper.

This course satisfies the 20th-century historical breadth requirement.


Graduate Readings: Discursive Identities in British Romanticism

English 203

Section: 2
Instructor: Bode, Christoph
Bode, Christoph
Time: TTh 2-3:30
Location: 202 Wheeler


Other Readings and Media

William Wordsworth: The Prelude (1805 version); Samuel Taylor Coleridge: "Frost at Midnightand other poems, Biographia Literaria; George Gordon, Lord Byron: Childe Harold's Pilgrimage, Don Juan; P.B. Shelley: "On Life," A Defence of Poetry, The Triumph of Life; John Keats: Hyperion, The Fall of Hyperion, Lamia, the Odes of 1819, the letters that are reprinted in The Norton Anthology of English Literature; Charlotte Smith: Elegiac Sonnets, Beachy Head

Description

The Romantic Age is arguably the first age in which we see systematic attempts at deriving the self from itself, at constructing an identity through the discourse that is produced by a subject, which, however, is itself seen as the product of that same discourse. Inevitably, such attempts must end in paradoxes, non sequiturs, and infinite regresses. But the different ways in which they do this can be highly illuminating, especially so if this happens in poetry and other self-referential texts that do not try to hide their own paradoxicality, but rather exhibit and foreground it. We will look at different manifestations of this urge to ground the self in itself (or the desire to transcend or negate the self), but we will also take other matters into account, such as the role of Romantic irony or the extent to which narration is a basic prerequisite for the discursive production of (the illusion of) identity.

This course satisfies the 19th-century historical breadth requirement.


Graduate Readings: Prospectus Course

English 203

Section: 3
Instructor: Hanson, Kristin
Time:
Location:


Description

This section of English 203 has been canceled.


Graduate Readings

English 203

Section: 4
Instructor: Miller, Jennifer
Time:
Location:


Description

This section of English 203 has been canceled.


Old English

English 205A

Section: 1
Instructor: No instructor assigned yet.
Time:
Location:


Description

This course will not be offered in 2012-13, but English Department graduate students may take the undergraduate equivalent, English 104 (Introduction to Old English), in its place; see the listing for that course in this Announcement of Classes.


Milton

English 218

Section: 1
Instructor: Turner, James Grantham
Time: TTh 12:30-2
Location: 201 Wheeler


Book List

Milton, John: The Riverside Milton [hardcover]

Description

This course will perform various operations on the massive corpus of Milton's writing. We will try to break down the isolation and idealization of a few major poems, to bring the prose writings into focus, to confront the politics of gender, and to see how Milton "produces himself" in his work. Though we are unlikely to abolish Milton's canonical position, we may invert the internal canon of his work, giving a central place to hitherto marginal texts: prose, minor poems, manuscript variants, foreign-language writings. Individual projects can develop from within this programme of intensive reading. I will not assume previous knowledge of Milton, but I would certainly recommend a preliminary (re)reading of Paradise Lost. Nor do I formally require reading in secondary sources, though we will often cross-refer to the standard positions. I will provide a list of research tools and suggestions for further reading, once I learn your particular interests and lines of enquiry.

This course satisfies the 17th-18th-century historical breadth requirement.


Fiction Writing Workshop

English 243A

Section: 1
Instructor: Mukherjee, Bharati
Time: Tues. 3:30-6:30
Location: 201 Wheeler


Book List

eds. R.V. Cassill & Joyce Carol Oates: The Norton Anthology of Contemporary Fiction, Second Edition

Description

This workshop course will concentrate on the form, theory and practice of fiction. Workshop participants are required to write a minimum of 45 pages of original fiction, fulfill specific assignments on craft, attend all workshop sessions, and provide written feedback on peers' works.

To be considered for admission to this class, please submit 10-15 photocopied pages of your fiction writing, along with an application form, to Bharati Mukherjee's box in 322 Wheeler Hall, BY 4:00 P.M., TUESDAY, APRIL 17, AT THE LATEST.

Be sure to read the paragraph concerning creative writing courses on page 1 of this Announcement of Classes for further information regarding enrollment in such courses!


American Literature to 1855

English 246I

Section: 1
Instructor: McQuade, Donald
Time: TTh 11-12:30
Location: 108 Wheeler


Book List

Barnum, P.T.: The Colossal P. T. Barnum Reader; Melville, Herman: The Confidence-Man: His Masquerade

Description

The series of great earthquakes at New Madrid, Missouri that rattled the entire Mississippi Valley in December 1811 sent shock waves of horror across the new nation. The newspaper and personal accounts of this calamitous event had special appeal for preachers of doom, watchers for the Second Coming, as well as believers in spiritualism and lovers of sensation. To be an American in the early nineteenth century was in no small part to read portents, to be lured by great expectations, and to breathe air that was tonic.

Nearly fifty years later, on the eve of the Civil War, Ralph Waldo Emerson observed in the “Worship” section of The Conduct of Life (1860), that “Society is a masked ball, where everyone hides his real character, and reveals it by hiding. . . .”  In the August 1849 issue of The Literary World, Evert Duyckinck, a prominent biographer and publisher, argued that “It is not the worst thing that can be said of a country that it gives birth to a confidence man. . . .  It is a good thing, and speaks well for human nature, that . . . men can be swindled.”

Within this time frame, we will consider carefully artful readings — and mis-readings — of what I call the “promissory tradition” in antebellum American literature and culture, initially as it is pre-figured in the evangelical discourse of such celebrated itinerant preachers as Lorenzo Dow, Peter Cartwright, and Charles Grandison Finney.  The majority of our conversations, however, will focus on the writings of Emerson, Whitman, Poe, and Melville.  We will explore Poe’s fascination with hoaxes and the art of “diddling” as well as examine expressions of this tradition in the popular culture of the period, ranging from the celebrated humbugs of P. T. Barnum to the ubiquitous appeals of patent medicine advertising. We will also devote considerable time to grappling with issues of identity and duplicity in Melville’s complex and disquieting novel, The Confidence Man, in which Melville suggests that “the great art of telling truth” may well best be practiced by telling lies. 

We will explore research questions that emerge from studying the appeal of various versions of the “confidence man,” at once a celebrant of promise and a broker of trust who trades on the ambiguities of imaginative authority in transactions that encourage faith and persuade audiences to believe.

This course satisfies the 19th-century historical breadth requirement.

 


Research Seminars: Victorian Cultural Studies

English 250

Section: 1
Instructor: Puckett, Kent
Time: M 3-6
Location: 108 Wheeler


Book List

Arnold, M.: Culture and Anarchy; Dickens, C.: Great Expectations; Eliot, G.: Felix Holt, The Radical; Eliot, T.S.: Selected Prose; James, C.L.R.: Beyond a Boundary; Ruskin, J.: Unto This Last; Woolf, V. : To the Lighthouse;

Recommended: Williams, R.: Culture and Society

Other Readings and Media

Films: David Lean, Great Expectations (1946), Tony Richardson, The Loneliness of the Long Distance Runner (1962), Steven Frears and Hanif Kureishi, My Beautiful Laundrette (1985), Shane Meadows, This is England (2006)

 

Description

This course will follow the long history of the culture concept in Britain.  We will begin by working through Raymond Williams’ account in Culture & Society in order to see how several senses of the word “culture”--culture as “the idea of human perfection,” as “society as a whole,” as “the general body of the arts,” or as “a whole way of life”--appear and reappear in Mill, Carlyle, Arnold, Dickens, Darwin, Eliot, C. Rossetti, Newman, Ruskin, and Morris.  We’ll supplement these readings with selections from the emerging fields of nineteenth-century anthropology, ethnography, and sociology: Tylor, Frazer, Durkheim, etc.  In the course’s second half, we’ll follow the culture concept as it makes its way through twentieth-century Britain: before, between, and after the wars (T.S.Eliot, Virginia Woolf, I.A. Richards, Q.D., and F.R. Leavis); in the long, fraught wake of British socialism (Richard Hoggart, Raymond Williams, C.L.R. James, and E.P. Thompson); and in the “New Times” of British cultural studies under and after Thatcher (Stuart Hall, Angela McRobbie, Paul Gilroy, and Dick Hebdige).  In the process of reading through these works, we’ll consider the strange tenacity of an especially Victorian idea, a particularly British effort to mark out practical relations between the social and the aesthetic, and the institutional and literary roles that education and, in particular, adult education have played in the post-Romantic imagination.

This course may be used to satisfy the 19th-century historical breadth requirement, the 20th-century historical breadth requirement, or the non-chronological requirement.

 


Research Seminars

English 250

Section: 2
Instructor: Marno, David
Time:
Location:


Description

This section of English 250 has been canceled.


Research Seminars: Reconstruction

English 250

Section: 3
Instructor: Wagner, Bryan
Time: Thurs. 3:30-6:30
Location: 201 Wheeler


Book List

Chesnutt, C.: The Marrow of Tradition; Dayan, C.: The Law is a White Dog; Du Bois, W. E. B.: Black Reconstruction; Harper, F. E. W.: Iola Leroy; Muhammad, K.: The Condemnation of Blackness; Toomer, J.: Cane; Twain, M.: Adventures of Huckleberry Finn

Description

“Among the revolutionary processes that transformed the nineteenth-century world, none was so dramatic in its human consequences or far-reaching in its social implications as the abolition of chattel slavery,” the historian Eric Foner has written. And nowhere was this revolutionary process more dramatic, more all encompassing, than in the United States—the only society in the history of the world where ex-slaves were granted citizenship rights and political representation directly on the heels of emancipation. Reconstruction was an exceptional moment in world history, to be sure, but one that swelled with the main currents of its time. It was an experiment in statecraft that tried to remake society all at once, turning a traditional situation where individuals were restricted by inherited relations of dependency into a modern scene based on the liberty to contract. This course aims to grasp Reconstruction, in all its complexity, as a narrative problem. We will be thinking in the abstract about the nature of historical transition, and in particular about the role of violence in times of transition, while we look to some of the major works from the late-nineteenth and early-twentieth centuries that turned Reconstruction into a story to be passed down. We will pay close attention to how these works sustain their most parochial commitments—to blood, family, race, nation—by adapting the moral vocabulary of the marketplace, and we we will observe how they represent history as romance, tragedy, and farce. Along the way, we will mark the formal devices (marriage plots, frame narration, analepses) that move these works from slavery to freedom while considering the material conditions (the stratification of the book trade, the professionalization of historical research, the emergence of the cinema) that determined how such devices could be employed.

We will also be reading through a collection of shorter works (ethnography, fiction, history, poetry, polemic, theory, and criticism) by writers such as Sterling Brown, William Dunning, Elsie Clews Parsons, Albion Tourgee, Ida B. Wells-Barnett, and Woodrow Wilson.

Films include Birth of a Nation (D. W. Griffith), Within Our Gates (Oscar Micheaux), and Gone with the Wind (Victor Fleming).  

This course satisfies the 19th-century historical breadth requirement.


The Teaching of Composition and Literature

English 302

Section: 1
Instructor: Snyder, Katherine
Time: Thurs. 9-11
Location: 305 Wheeler


Description

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Field Studies in Tutoring Writing

English 310

Section: 1
Instructor: No instructor assigned yet.
Time: T.B.A.
Location: T.B.A.


Book List

Meyer, E., and Smith, L.: The Practical Tutor;

Recommended: Leki, I.: Understanding ESL Writers

Description

Through seminars, discussions, and reading assignments, students are introduced to the language/writing/literacy needs of diverse college-age writers such as the developing, bi-dialectal, and non-native English-speaking (NNS) writer. The course will provide a theoretical and practical framework for tutoring and composition instruction.

The seminar will focus on various tutoring methodologies and the theories which underlie them. Students will become familiar with relevant terminology, approaches, and strategies in the fields of composition teaching and learning. New tutors will learn how to respond constructively to student writing, as well as develop and hone effective tutoring skills. By guiding others towards clarity and precision in prose, tutors will sharpen their own writing abilities. New tutors will tutor fellow Cal students in writing and/or literature courses. Tutoring occurs in the Cesar E. Chavez Student Center under the supervision of experienced writing program staff.

In order to enroll for the seminar, students must have at least sophomore standing and have completed their Reading and Composition R1A and R1B requirements.

Some requirements include: participating in a weekly training seminar and occasional workshops; reading assigned articles, videotaping a tutoring session, and becoming familiar with the resources available at the Student Learning Center; tutoring 4-6 hours per week; keeping a tutoring journal and writing a final paper; meeting periodically with both the tutor supervisor(s) and tutees' instructors.

This course meets the field study requirements for the Education minor, but it cannot be used toward fulfillment of the requirements for the English major. It must be taken P/NP. Pick up an application for a pre–enrollment interview at the Student Learning Center, Atrium, Cesar Chavez Student Center (Lower Sproul Plaza), beginning April 2. No one will be admitted after the first week of fall classes.