Announcement of Classes: Spring 2016


History of the English Language

English 101

Section: 1
Instructor: Hanson, Kristin
Time: TTh 11-12:30
Location: 123 Wheeler


Book List

Millward, Celia: A Biography of the English Language; Millward, Celia: workbook to accompany Biography of the English Language

Description

This course surveys the history of the English language from its Indo-European roots, through its Old, Middle and Early Modern periods, and up to its different forms in use throughout the world today. Topics include changes in its core grammatical systems of phonology (sound structure), morphology (word structure) and syntax (sentence structure); in vocabulary; in writing and literary forms; and in the social position of English and its dialects.


Chaucer

English 111

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


Description

This course has been canceled.


English Drama to 1603

English 114A

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


Description

This course has been canceled.


Shakespeare

English 117S

Section: 1
Instructor: Arnold, Oliver
Time: TTh 11-12:30
Location: note new location: 101 Moffitt


Book List

Greenblatt, S., editor: The Norton Shakespeare, 3rd edition

Description

Shakespeare’s poems and plays are relentlessly unsettling, extravagantly beautiful, deeply moving, rigorously brilliant, and compulsively meaningful: they complicate everything, they simplify nothing, and for 400 years, they have been a touchstone—indeed, something like an obsession—for literary artists from Milton to Goethe to Emily Dickinson to Joyce to Brecht to Zukofsky to Sarah Kane and for philosophers and theorists from Hegel to Marx to Freud to Derrida to Lacan to Zizeck.  We will be especially concerned with five large issues: compassion; political representation and its discontents; the nature of identity and subjectivity; colonialism; and the relation between the ways Shakespeare’s plays make meaning and the ways they produce emotional experience.  Our reading will include: Titus Andronicus, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, The Merchant of Venice, Julius Caesar, Henry V, Hamlet, Coriolanus, and The Tempest.

If you already own a good edition of the plays (for example, the 1st or 2nd edition of The Norton Shakespeare, The Riverside Shakespeare or The Arden Shakespeare), don’t feel at all obliged to buy the 3rd edition of The Norton Shakespeare.  The Norton Shakespeare is available in several formats (single-volume, two-volume, four-volume).  I have ordered the two-volume edition.


Shakespeare

English 117S

Section: 2
Instructor: Knapp, Jeffrey
Time: MW 1-2; discussion sections F 1-2
Location: 2 LeConte


Book List

Shakespeare, William: The Comedy of Errors; Shakespeare, William: The Norton Shakespeare: Essential Plays (3rd ed.);

Recommended: Greenblatt, Stephen: Will in the World: How Shakespeare Became Shakespeare

Description

Shakespeare wrote a massive number of plays.  Focusing on a selection of them, we’ll consider the range of Shakespeare's dramaturgy and why this range was important to him.  We’ll also explore how the variety of dramatic genres in which he wrote affected Shakespeare’s representation of plot and character, as well as the literary, social, sexual, religious, political, and philosophical issues he conceptualized through plot and character.  Finally, we’ll think about Shakespeare’s plays in relation to the range of social types and classes in his mass audience. 


The Victorian Period

English 122

Section: 1
Instructor: Lavery, Grace
Time: MWF 12-1
Location: Note new location: 103 Moffitt


Book List

Bronte, Emily: Wuthering Heights; Collins, Wilkie: The Moonstone; Eliot, George: Adam Bede; Mayhew, Henry: London Labour and the London Poor; Pater, Walter: Studies in the History of the Renaissance; Rossetti, Dante Gabriel: Collected Poetry and Prose; Yeats, William Butler: The Collected Poems of W. B. Yeats

Description

The Victorian period witnessed dramatic and probably permanent changes to the literary culture of Britain, including: the morphing of scattered memoirs into formal autobiographies; the rise of the realist novel as the indispensable genre of bourgeois life; the investment of culture with the power to effect epochal political change and rearrange readers' sexualities; the invention of vampires, robots, serial killers, and other new forms of monstrosity; the modernization of narrative pornography; and the rejuvenation of bardic poetry. At the same time British authors were trying and failing to manage the largest empire in history, both devising new ways to dominate the world through writing and interrupting the violence that imperialism—the so-called "final phase of capitalism"—produced.

This course engages the major theoretical questions posed by Victorian literature, questions which emerge from the unprecedented global suffusion of British imperial influence. How might the enormity of this new world be meaningfully represented in language? What new accounts of personhood, ethics, sexuality, ethnicity, evolution, and art are required? Dealing with these and related questions, we will perhaps come to understand the enduring power of Victorian literature to speak to our own moment of globalization and crisis—our perennial return to the unanswered questions and open wounds of the nineteenth century.

(Note that the book list for this course was changed on November 4.)

 


The Contemporary Novel: The Latest Pulitzer Prize-Winning Novels

English 125E

Section: 1
Instructor: Wong, Hertha D. Sweet
Time: MW 10-11; discussion sections F 10-11
Location: Note new location: 390 Hearst Mining


Book List

Diaz, Junot: The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao.; Doerr, Anthony: All the Light We Cannot See.; Egan, Jennifer: A Visit from the Goon Squad.; Harding, Paul: Tinkers; Johnson, Adam: The Orphan Master's Son; Strout, Elizabeth: Olive Kittredge; Tartt, Donna: The Goldfinch

Other Readings and Media

Reader.

Description

The Pulitzer Prize in Fiction is awarded for “distinguished fiction by an American author, preferably dealing with American life.”  In this course, we will read the seven most recent (2008-2015) Pulitzer Prize-winning novels (actually, one of them is a collection of short fiction).  In addition to examining narrative form and literary style, we will consider cultural and historical contexts and thematic resonances.  We will discuss the trends in types of topics and styles selected for the Pulitzer as well.

Please note that many of the novels are lengthy so it will be a good idea to read ahead.

 


British Literature: 1900-1945: The Modernist Novel

English 126

Section: 1
Instructor: Flynn, Catherine
Time: TTh 2-3:30
Location: 56 Barrows


Book List

Beckett, Samuel: Watt; Conrad, Joseph: Lord Jim; Doyle, Arthur Conan: The Sign of Four; Eliot, George: The Lifted Veil; Ford, Ford Madox: The Good Soldier; Forster, E.M.: Howards End; Joyce, James: Ulysses; Rhys, Jean: Good Morning, Midnight; Woolf, Virginia: The Waves

Description

The British novel in the first half of the twentieth century was a site of massive formal experimentation. Time, space, narrators, characters, and language were dismantled and reconfigured in startling new ways. In this survey, we will look at novelistic experiments by seven authors: Joseph Conrad, E. M. Forster, Ford Madox Ford, James Joyce, Virginia Woolf, Jean Rhys and Samuel Beckett. Using close reading and formal analysis, we ask what these experiments were. We will gather a set of varied and precise ways of talking about modernism’s formal features, its philosophical issues and its social and historical context.  As a foil for modernist experimentation, we will begin by examining two short nineteenth-century texts: George Eliot's The Lifted Veil and Arthur Conan Doyle's The Sign of Four.


Modern Drama

English 128

Section: 1
Instructor: Altieri, Charles F.
Time: MWF 2-3
Location: 122 Wheeler


Book List

Puchner, Martin: The Norton Anthology of Drama; Weiss, Katharine: The Plays of Samuel Beckett

Other Readings and Media

There will be several plays available in Pdf on bcourses.  The Norton Anthology of Drama also comes with elaborate on-line resources.

Description

This course will be a survey of Modern Drama, mostly in Europe and in the US from about 1880 to 2000.  We will read about 30 plays, and we will watch at least a couple of them.  Dramatists studied will include Ibsen, Chekhov, Pirandello, O'Neill, Yeats, Beckett, Pinter, Fugard, Kushner, and Albee. But since this is an English Department course, the emphasis will be on what writers accomplish rather than what actors or readers can make of those accomplishments.  I am especially interested in how dramatists interpret their fundamental materials--real human beings on stage, yet the unreality of theater as staged experience, the difficulties of making a story present rather than telling it, and the problems of addressing an audience by suggesting that concrete figures can represent fundamental needs and desires of audiences.  And the sequence of readings will tell stories about how realism is both necessary in the theater and continually felt as an oppresive limitation.  There will be at least one paper and a final.  Since teachers like plays need audiences, regular attendance is mandatory. 


American Literature: 1800-1865

English 130B

Section: 1
Instructor: Breitwieser, Mitchell
Time: MWF 1-2
Location: 122 Wheeler


Book List

Douglass, Frederick: Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass; Emerson, Ralph Waldo: Nature and Selected Essays; Hawthorne, Nathaniel: The Scarlet Letter; Melville, Herman: Moby Dick; Thoreau, Henry David: Walden; Whitman, Walt: Leaves of Grass (1855 edition)

Description

I will lecture on several of the primary literary texts of the antebellum period. Two ten-page essays, a final exam, and regular attendance will be required.


The American Novel

English 132

Section: 1
Instructor: Goble, Mark
Time: MW 3-4; discussion sections F 3-4
Location: 141 McCone


Other Readings and Media

See below.

Description

A survey of major American novels from the late-nineteenth century to the present, with a focus on realism, naturalism, and modernism. Rather than trace a single history of the novel in this period, we will explore a range of genres—including works of popular fiction--that highlight some of the most significant developments in novel form, as well as the cultural and historical contexts they illuminate.  

Readings will include texts by Henry James, Edith Wharton, Willa Cather, Ralph Ellison, Philip Roth, Paule Marshall, Thomas Pynchon, Toni Morrison, Don DeLillo, and Marilynne Robinson.


African American Literature and Culture Since 1917: The African American Essay

English 133B

Section: 1
Instructor: Best, Stephen M.
Time: TTh 12:30-2
Location: 123 Wheeler


Book List

Als, Hilton: White Girls; Baldwin, James: Notes of a Native Son; Baldwin, James: The Fire Next Time; Coates, Ta-Nehisi: Between the World and Me; Ellison, Ralph: Shadow and Act; Jones, LeRoi: Blues People; Keene, John: Counternarratives; Rankine, Claudia: Citizen

Description

Readers of James Baldwin, W. E. B. DuBois, Ralph Ellison, and Zora Neale Hurston have often turned to these authors' essays with a mind to better understanding their literary work.  In this course we will consider the African American essay as a form in its own right, one that rewards close formal analysis.  The essay (from Old French essai, “attempt”) is a sort of rhetorical trial balloon, implying firstness, a want of finish, and a rigorous nonsystematicity.  We will consider the matter of incompletion in two respects -- the essay as it engages the topic of the incomplete project of black freedom, and the essay as ongoing experiment in form—with a goal of puzzling out how the two are related.

Readings by the following authors: Hilton Als, James Baldwin, Ta-Nehisi Coates, Ralph Ellison, Zora Neale Hurston, LeRoi Jones (Amiri Baraka), John Keene, Nathaniel Mackey, and Claudia Rankine.


Topics in American Studies: The Great Exhaling: American History, Culture and Politics, 1946-1952

English C136

Section: 1
Instructor: Moran, Kathleen and Marcus, Greil
Time: MW 4-5:30 + discussion sections
Location: 2 LeConte


Book List

McLuhan, Marshall: The Mechanical Bride; Roth, Philip: I Married a Communist; Salinger, J. D.: Catcher in the Rye

Other Readings and Media

Additional Readings will be collected in a Reader available at Copy Central on Bancroft and on bcourses.

Description

1948 was the year that America–after the Great Depression, after the Second World War, after sixteen year of the all but revolutionary experiment in national government of the New Deal–let out its collective breath. Finally, that great exhaling said, we can go back to real life–but what was “real life?” Centering on 1948, but moving a few years back and a few years forward, this class will explore the sometimes instantly celebrated, sometimes all but subterranean experiments in American culture and literature that tried to raise and answer that question. The artists, writers, filmmakers, painters, musicians, poets and social theorists who emerged to tell that national story included Miles Davis and Jack Kerouac, Allen Ginsburg and Ross MacDonald, J.D. Salinger and Ray Bradbury, David Riesman and Marshall McLuhan. This course will follow the traces of this explosion as well as contextualize the America that was being born. It will include films, popular music, Life Magazine, advertising culture and television as well as novels, poetry and discussions of visual images. 

This class is cross-listed with American Studies C111E.


Chicana/o Literature and Culture Since 1910

English 137B

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


Description

This course has been canceled.

 


Topics in Chicana/o Literature and Culture: The Chicana/o Novel

English 137T

Section: 1
Instructor: Gonzalez, Marcial
Time: MWF 12-1
Location: Note new location: 100 Wheeler


Book List

Acosta, Oscar Zeta: The Revolt of the Cockroach People; Alvarez, Julia: In the Time of the Butterflies; Castillo, Ana: Sapogonia; Pineda, Cecile: Face; Rechy, John: City of Night; Ruiz, Ronald: Jesusita; Vea, Alfredo: Gods Go Begging; Viramontes, Helena M.: Their Dogs Came With Them

Description

This course on Chicana/o and Latina/o novels complements a Chicana/o literature course I taught in the fall entitled “Migrant Narratives.”  But whereas the fall course included works that represented various literary genres (the novel, autobiography, short story, creative journalism, and poetry), the spring course will focus exclusively on the novel.  As we shall see, the formal features and thematic representations of these novels have been influenced to a large degree by a broad range of experiences: living in the borderlands of nationality, language, politics, and culture; growing up female in a male-centered environment; fighting racism; engaging in class struggle; encountering various forms of organized state repression; migration and immigration; getting involved in political movements; sometimes becoming complicit with the forces of domination; and expressing these experiences in art and literature. Because this is a reading intensive course, we will spend considerable time in class discussing the novels and doing collective close readings of selected passages. We'll be attentive to the manner in which the act of storytelling in these novels contributes to the formation of complex and sometimes contradictory cultural identities. We'll also read and discuss essays on narrative theory and history to facilitate our analysis of the aesthetic and social issues that inform the writing of these novels and to understand how Chicana/o and Latina/o novels expand and enrich the American literary tradition generally.


Studies in World Literature in English: Postcolonial Sex

English 138

Section: 1
Instructor: Saha, Poulomi
Time: TTh 9:30-11
Location: note new room: 130 Wheeler


Book List

Forster, E. M.: A Passage to India; Foucault, Michel: The History of Sexuality, Vol. 1; Keller, Nora Okja: Comfort Woman; Mootoo, Shani: Cereus Blooms at Night; Selvadurai, Shyam: Funny Boy: A Novel

Other Readings and Media

See below.

Description

This course will explore the intersection of theories of gender and sexuality and the postcolonial world. We will consider how gender and nation are shaped and represented in literature and film. Why are nations routinely imagined as women, and imperial dominion expressed in terms of sexual conquest? Western academic models of gender and sexuality provide one set of frameworks by which to discuss desires, identities, and affects—in this class we will ask how well they travel to a postcolonial context. How do theories, practices, and identity categories translate? What do they elide? What do they take as “natural”? We will suggest alternative frameworks for describing sexuality around the world and for exploring non-Western literary representations of non-normative gender identities and sexualities.

Readings and films may include work by Joseph Conrad, E.M. Forster, Shyam Selvadurai, Deepa Mehta, Sigmund Freud, and Judith Butler.


Modes of Writing (Exposition, Fiction, Verse, etc.): Varieties of Creative Writing

English 141

Section: 1
Instructor: Giscombe, Cecil S.
Time: MW 4-5:30
Location: 140 Barrows


Book List

Basho: Back Roads to Far Towns; Brunvand, Jan: The Choking Doberman; Coultas, Brenda: The Marvelous Bones of Time; Lorde, Andre: Zami: A New Spelling of My Name - A Biomythography; Ondaatje, Michael: Running in the Family

Other Readings and Media

Fiction packet including stories by William Kennedy, Jamaica Kincaid, Louise Erdrich, Eudora Welty, etc.

Description

We’ll study some of the ways that fiction writers, essayists, story-tellers, and poets have responded to the worlds that their cultures have built.  We’ll look at “high” forms and “low” forms and write in both and consider the distinctions.  We’ll read and think about and write urban legends and short fictions, family histories and haibuns, hybrid texts and ghost stories and ballads.  Students will work on individual projects and will also be asked to collaborate on group performances of creative work.  Projects incorporating material from non-written sources (graphic art, for example) will be encouraged; projects incorporating material from unpublished sources (folklore, family stories, etc.) will also be encouraged. 

This course is open to English majors only.


Short Fiction

English 143A

Section: 2
Instructor: Kleege, Georgina
Time: TTh 2-3:30
Location: 301 Wheeler


Book List

Egan, J. ed.: The Best American Short Stories, 2014

Description

This class will be conducted as a writing workshop.  We will discuss the stories in the assigned anthology and writing by students in the class.  Assignments will include three short writing exercises, two new short stories, and critiques of classmates' work. 

Only continuing UC Berkeley students are eligible to apply for this course.  To be considered for admission, please electronically submit 8-10 pages of your fiction (no poetry, drama, screenplays, or academic papers), by clicking on the link below; fill out the application you'll find there and attach the writing sample as a Word document or .rtf file.  The deadline for completing this application process is 4 P.M., THURSDAY, OCTOBER 29.  (If you are submitting an excerpt from a longer story or novel, indicate this on the first page.)

Also be sure to read the paragraph concerning creative writing courses on page 1 of the instructions area of this Announcement of Classes for further information regarding enrollment in such courses. 

 


Short Fiction

English 143A

Section: 3
Instructor: Oates, Joyce Carol
Time: Thurs. 3:30-6:30
Location: note new location: 203 Wheeler


Book List

Oates, J. C., ed.: Oxford Book of American Short Stories, 2012 (2nd edition)

Description

A fiction workshop in which students will be expected to turn in material approximately every third week, to be edited and discussed in class.

Emphasis will be upon editing and revising. Quality rather than quantity is the ideal, but each student should be prepared to write about fifty pages through the term, to be gathered into a small “book” and turned in on the last class day. Appropriate assignments will be made in the (2nd) 2012 edition of THE OXFORD BOOK OF AMERICAN SHORT STORIES edited by Joyce Carol Oates.

Only continuing UC Berkeley students are eligible to apply for this course. To be considered for admission, please electronically submit 10-15 double-spaced pages of your fiction, by clicking on the link below; fill out the application you'll find there and attach the writing sample as a Word document or .rtf file. The deadline for completing this application process is 4 P.M., THURSDAY, OCTOBER 29.

Also be sure to read the paragraph concerning creative writing courses on page 1 of the instructions area of this Announcement of Classes for further information regarding enrollment in such courses.


Verse

English 143B

Section: 1
Instructor: Shoptaw, John
Time: TTh 9:30-11
Location: 301 Wheeler


Other Readings and Media

Course reader available from Krishna Copy (University Ave. and Milvia).

Description

In this course you will conduct a progressive series of explorations in which you will try some of the fundamental options for writing poetry today (or any day)--aperture and closure; rhythmic sound patterning; sentence and line; short and long-lined poems; image & figure; stanza; poetic forms (Sapphics, villanelle, sestina, pantoum, ghazal, visual poem, etc.); the first, second, and third person (persona, address, drama, narrative, description); prose poetry, and revision. Our emphasis will be on recent possibilities, with an eye and ear to renovating traditions. We will also read a number of poems by graduates of my 143B sections who have gone on to publish books and win prizes.  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 four or five in rotation (I’ll also respond each week to every poem you write.) On alternate days, we’ll discuss illustrative poems in our course reader. If the past is any guarantee, the course will be fun and will make you a better poet.

Only continuing UC Berkeley students are eligible to apply for this course. To be considered for admission, please electronically submit 5 of your poems, by clicking on the link below; fill out the application you'll find there and attach the writing sample as a Word document or .rtf file. The deadline for completing this application process is 4 P.M., THURSDAY, OCTOBER 29.

Also be sure to read the paragraph concerning creative writing courses on page 1 of the instructions area of this Announcement of Classes for further information regarding enrollment in such courses.


Verse

English 143B

Section: 2
Instructor: Moschovakis, Anna
Time: TTh 3:30-5
Location: 104 Dwinelle


Book List

Boyer, Anne: Garments Against Women; Foster, Tanya M.: A Swarm of Bees in High Court; Giles, Samantha: deadfalls and snares; Rankine, Loffreda, and King, eds.: The Racial Imaginary; Sawako, Nakayasu: Mouth: Eats Color

Other Readings and Media

Physical or digital copies of several other books will be provided.

Description

At a pivotal moment in the development of her practice, the experimental composer Maryanne Amacher is said to have conducted a notebook-based self-analysis that revolutionized her relationship to composition. In this course, parallel to the writing, critiquing, and reading of poetry, we will borrow and adapt this idea, first determining collectively what elements of poetics to address, and then working individually to probe and/or purge our assumptions about them. In addition to the individualized readings that emerge from these studies, we will discuss recent works by Tonya Foster, Samantha Giles, Anne Boyer, Sawako Nakayasu (with Chika Sagawa), Simone White, Diana Hamilton, Rob Halpern, and others, as well as selections from the recently released book The Racial Imaginary. The semester will culminate in some form of public presentation or presentations — through live readings or talks, print or digital publication, or other media — of our ongoing investigations. Students interested in translation and who work across language, genre, and media are encouraged to apply.

Only continuing UC Berkeley students are eligible to apply for this course. To be considered for admission, please electronically submit 5 of your poems, by clicking on the link below; fill out the application you'll find there and attach the writing sample as a Word document or .rtf file. The deadline for completing this application process is 4 P.M., THURSDAY, OCTOBER 29.

Also be sure to read the paragraph concerning creative writing courses on page 1 of the instructions area of this Announcement of Classes for further information regarding enrollment in such courses.
 


Prose Nonfiction: Traveling, Thinking, Writing/ Travelers' Tales

English 143N

Section: 1
Instructor: Giscombe, Cecil S.
Time: MW 1:30-3
Location: 301 Wheeler


Book List

Conrad, Joseph: Heart of Darkness; Harris, Eddy: Mississippi Solo; Niemann, Linda G.: Boomer: Railroad Memoirs

Other Readings and Media

Plus excerpts from Basho's Back Roads to Far Towns (translated by Cid Corman) and Joanne Kyger's Strange Big Moon

Description

Much of American literature has had to do with a sense of motion. Note the journeys, e.g., in the best known texts of Melville and Twain. But note also that Harlemite Langston Hughes’ autobiography, The Big Sea, begins on a boat and details his adventures in Europe and Africa; Canadian writer Gladys Hindmarch takes on Melville with her Watery Part of the World and Zora Neale Hurston travels to Haiti in Tell My Horse and through the American south in Mules and Men. 

The point of this course is multiple and full of inquiry.

The 
familiar question, “Is this trip necessary?”, is joined to “What makes this trip important enough to 
celebrate?” 

Another field is the role of Americans and/ or Westerners as travelers in the world.  What things are we heir to?  What are our responsibilities and blindnesses?  What’s the relation between the imperial West and our current situation? The point in this—and any writing—is to write consciously and to be mindful of the political import of our writing. 

A third field is the defining of the relation between travel and place (and imagination). Place is “hot” 
right now, as a topic. What are the elements of the sentimental here and what assumptions?

Workshop.  Discussions.  Reading.  Writing assignments.  Field trips.  The writing vehicle will be, for the greatest part, the personal essay (with some forays outward into hybrid prose/ poetry forms).

Only continuing UC Berkeley students are eligible to apply for this course.  To be considered for admission, please electronically submit 5-10 double-spaced pages of your creative nonfiction (no poetry or academic writing) by clicking on the link below; fill out the application you'll find there and attach the writing sample as a Word document or .rtf file. The deadline for completing this application process is 4 P.M., THURSDAY, OCTOBER 29.

Also be sure to read the paragraph concerning creative writing courses on page 1 of the instructions area of this Announcement of Classes for further information regarding enrollment in such courses. 

 


Introduction to Literary Theory: Free Speech, In Theory

English 161

Section: 1
Instructor: Langan, Celeste
Time: TTh 11-12:30
Location: Note new location: 587 Barrows


Book List

Butler, J.: Excitable Speech; Foucault, M.: Fearless Speech; Freud, S.: Dora; Freud, S.: Psychopathology of Everyday Life; Melville, H.: Shorter Works; Plato: The Republic; Sophocles: Antigone; Wordsworth and Coleridge: Lyrical Ballads

Description

This course will interrogate the way in which “free” speech, as moral value or political right, informs and complicates our understanding of literature and the literary.  We will trace the conceptual intersection of freedom and speech both historically and across several disciplines, beginning with Plato and Aristotle, then proceeding to consider the effect of general literacy on the conception and regulation of free “speech,” reading Milton’s Areopagitica and Marx’s “On the Freedom of the Press.” Turning from "public" to "private" speech, we will also examine psychoanalytic and linguistic accounts of psychic and physiological disfluency.  Throughout, we will consider the “freedom” of speech in relation to questions of both form and content.  Are genre, meter, and grammar mere forms of constraint? Or are we free only when released by formal constraint from instrumental communication? Do political and psychic repression merely inhibit free speech, or is our idea(l) of free speech an effect of these repressions?  And what do physical constraints on speech, from aphasia to stuttering, have to tell us of the relation of literary form to speech freedom?  Does the global hegemony of English threaten a speech freedom that ought to be understood as dependent upon a polyglot diversity? Finally, to what extent is free speech a diminished form of freedom itself?  We will end by considering the current situation of free speech in the U.S., reading materials related to the  “Citizens United” decision, current discussions of "campus climate," and earlier Supreme Court cases related to free speech.

Students will have the opportunity to write three progressively longer essays (ranging from 3 to 10 pages) on different theoretical questions of free speech: on a specific philosophical, political, or aesthetic theory of speech freedom; on a legal or psychoanalytic “case”; on literary form.


Special Topics: Arthurian Medievalisms

English 165

Section: 1
Instructor: No instructor assigned yet.
Time: MW 9-10:30
Location: 305 Wheeler


Book List

Barron, W. R. J., and S. C. Weinberg, eds. and trans.: Layamon's Arthur: The Arthurian Section of Layamon's Brut (lines 9229-14297); Eliot, T. S.: The Waste Land; Lord Tennyson, Alfred: Idylls of the King; Malory, Thomas: Le Morte d'Arthur; Norris J. Lacy, Geoffrey Ashe, and Debra N. Mancoff: The Arthurian Handbook, 2nd edition; Percy, Walker: Lancelot; Steinbeck, John: Tortilla Flat; Twain, Mark: A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court

Other Readings and Media

Online Course Packet including selections from (primary sources) Geoffrey of Monmouth, Chrétien de Troyes, Gawain and the Green Knight, Chaucer, Spenser, Walter Scott, Swinburne, David Lodge; and (secondary sources) Walter Benjamin, Fredric Jameson, Umberto Eco, Norris Lacy, Patrick Geary, Kathleen Davis, Alan Lupack and Barbara Tepa Lupack, Tison Pugh and Angela Jane Weisl, and Michael Alexander.

Description

This course will focus on medievalism, i.e., the representation and conceptualization of the Middle Ages, in order to analyze how ideas about the past are used in literature and the arts, in both "high" and popular culture. The point of the course is not to separate historical facts about the Middle Ages from literary fictions, but rather to trace the ways in which the imagined medieval past and the wide and often contradictory range of ideas associated with it (middleness, disruption, origin, nostalgia, primitivism, chivalry, absolutism, etc.) have proven both useful and problematic in confronting the present and future. We will ask what each society's medievalism says about the society itself, and trace the ways that ideas about the Middle Ages have been used to promote or critique particular values. The course will center on English literature and one of its most persistent "medieval" subjects, the "Matter of Britain," tales of Arthur and his knights. We will explore several historical moments and places in which Arthurian medievalisms have flourished, using literary work as a lens into the cultures' complex engagement with their pasts. The goals of the course will be to gain a broad familiarity with the themes and history of the Arthurian tradition and at the same time to understand the perdurance of that tradition, both the reasons why the Arthurian world and its medievalism remain so useful a setting and the key changes in the conceptualization of that world over time. Our main objects of study will be works of British and American literature, but we will frequently supplement them with Arthuriana from other media and cultures.

 


Special Topics: 21st-Century U.S. Poetry

English 165

Section: 2
Instructor: O'Brien, Geoffrey G.
Time: MW 12-1:30
Location: 305 Wheeler


Other Readings and Media

Course Reader

Description

In this course we’ll review the U.S. poetry of the present, reading representative poems from the last 15 years or so in relation to a number of formal concerns, poetic subjects, and debates within the social field (and its media), including: the advent of the Internet and its ongoing effect on writing and reading practice, dissemination, and national conversations about race, gender, class, and community; the emergence of “ecopoetics”; the waning and reinvention of traditional forms; prose poetry; Conceptual poetry; movement poetry (Occupy-era and antiracist work). All readings will be drawn from a Course Reader and will include Kevin Davies, Juliana Spahr, Claudia Rankine, Ben Lerner, Jennifer Moxley, Graham Foust, Ariana Reines, Douglas Kearney, Fred Moten, Lisa Robertson, Cathy Park Hong, Brenda Hillman, Javier Huerta, and many others.

This course is open to English majors only.


Special Topics: Oscar Wilde and the Nineteenth Century

English 165

Section: 3
Instructor: Lavery, Grace
Time: MW 4-5:30
Location: 103 Wheeler


Book List

Bartlett, Neil: Who Was That Man?: A Present for Mr. Oscar Wilde; Beardsley, Aubrey: Salome: A Tragedy in One Act; Beerbohm, Max: Zuleika Dobson: or An Oxford Love Story; Ellmann, Richard: Oscar Wilde; Wilde, Oscar: Complete Works of Oscar Wilde; Wilde, Oscar: Teleny: A Novel Attributed to Oscar Wilde; Wilde, Oscar: The Picture of Dorian Gray: An Annotated, Uncensored Edition

Description

Oscar Wilde's jokes, and his pathos, can seem out of place in Victorian literature: they leap off the dusty page and into a present moment where their author seems to fit more happily. Without wishing to consign him back to that potentially hostile past, the task of this course is to understand Wilde's engagement with the histories and cultures around him. A trenchant critic of Victorian sexual morality and hypocrisy, Wilde was also a voracious consumer of his contemporaries' writing and a prominent public intellectual. An historical understanding of Wilde will help shed new light on crucial questions such as: in the final decades of the British colonial occupation of Ireland, how did Wilde's Irishness enable and constrict his construction of a public indentity? To what extent do his poems and plays generate new forms for the English language, or (conversely) how are his apparent innovations mere translations from French and German Romanticism? Whatever else it may have done, how did Wilde's public homosexuality shape Victorian attitudes to gender and sex? These and related questions will help us not only shed new light on the uniqueness of Wildean writing, but connect the author himself with the broader political questions from which he is usually thought exempt.

In addition to a substantial proportion of Wilde's (all too slender) corpus, we will read relevant works by Matthew Arnold, Charles Baudelaire, Samuel Butler, the Brothers Grimm, G. W. F. Hegel, Joris-Karl Huysmans, Vernon Lee, Amy Levy, Friedrich Nietzche, Max Nordau, and Walter Pater.

This course is open to English majors only.

 


Special Topics: Representing Non-Human Life in Seventeenth- and Eighteenth-Century Britain

English 165

Section: 4
Instructor: Picciotto, Joanna M
Time: TTh 12:30-2
Location: Note new location: 205 Dwinelle


Description

We will explore techniques developed by scientists, theologians, and poets to represent other life forms. Contexts we’ll investigate include encounters with new-world flora and fauna, the invention of the microscope and the discovery of the cell, and contemporary debates over plant reproduction and the possibility of extra-terrestrial life. Alongside questions related to medium and genre, we’ll consider when the representation of other creatures becomes representation in an almost political sense, casting the animal as a voiceless subject on whose behalf, and in whose place, the author speaks. We will also track how new approaches to the physical investigation of animals and plants affected their traditional status as natural symbols (of various vices and virtues, for example). Finally, we will consider the special challenges and opportunities posed by representing creatures that continued to elude empirical study, such as angels.

There will be semi-regular quizzes on the reading, two short papers, and a final exam.

All readings will be made available on the course site; students may also purchase them in the form of a course reader.

Sample Texts: Anna Laetitia Barbauld, “The Mouse’s Petition”; Erasmus Darwin, The Loves of the Plants; Henry Power, Experimental Philosophy; Henry Vaughan, Silex Scintillans

This course is open to English majors only.

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

 


Special Topics: Is It Useless to Revolt?: Literature of Revolt

English 165

Section: 5
Instructor: Goldsmith, Steven
Time: TTh 2-3:30
Location: 305 Wheeler


Book List

James, Henry : The Princess Casamassima; Kushner, Rachel: The Flame Throwers; Melville, Herman: Benito Cereno; Milton, John: Paradise Regained, Samson Agonistes, and the Complete Shorter Poems; O'Brien, Geoffrey: People on Sunday; Shelley, Percy: Shelley's Poetry and Prose

Description

“Is it useless to revolt?”  Our course borrows its title from an essay by Foucault on the Iranian Revolution of 1979.  Foucault urges us to suspend judgment and listen to the voices of revolt, even as they seem entangled in a history of inescapable, recurrent violence.  Attracted and repulsed by revolutionary violence, the authors in this course test Foucault’s proposition that, “While revolts take place in history, they also escape it in a certain manner.” The intersection of religion, art, and politics will loom large in our discussions.  Starting with Milton’s Samson Agonistes, we will consider how religious convictions inform both political aspiration and a willingness to justify acts of violence.  Such questions will lead us back to two foundational representations of revolt in the Bible (Exodus and Revelation), and they will lead us forward to contemporary questions about “terrorism.”  (After 9/11, a much publicized debate on Samson Agonistes asked whether its central character is best described as a terrorist.)  Other readings will range widely across historical periods and national cultures, including works by Blake, Kleist, Nat Turner, Shelley, Melville, and James in the nineteenth century, Yeats, Auden, and Darwish in the twentieth, and contemporary authors such as Kenzaburo Oe, Rachel Kushner, and (Berkeley’s own) Geoffrey O’Brien.  On occasion, we will take up theoretical writings on the subject of revolt, liberation, and violence by Kant, Benjamin, Arendt, Zizek, and—of course—Foucault.

This course is open to English majors only.


Special Topics: Queer Lifestyles in Literature and Theory

English 165

Section: 6
Instructor: Weiner, Joshua J
Time: TTh 3:30-5
Location: 101 Wheeler


Book List

Cleland, John: Fanny Hill; Delany, Samuel: Dhalgren; Lawrence, D. H. : Sons and Lovers; Pater, Walter: Marius the Epicurean; Rochester: Poems; Wittig, Monique: Les Guérillères

Description

Before the twentieth century, "queer" usually just meant strange or peculiar; it suggested an unusual way of living or being. The word gradually became a slur to describe someone sexually different, and we have now rehabilitated it as the polite way to designate a broad but fractious coalition of identities. Queer theory today is exploring the limits of this guiding concept, debating whether and how queerness must entail resistance to socio-political norms and if so, whether it must still entail same-sex desire at all. This course will study queerness both in theory and in literary texts, focusing on works that represent the search for an alternative, different, and aesthetically charged “queer lifestyle.” We will consider literature from the libertine culture of the seventeenth century to the radical separatist fantasies of the late twentieth century. The theoretical portion of the course will cover classics of queer theory (Foucault, Sedgwick, Butler) as well as current hot topics (homonormativity, pornography and sex work, trans and queer of color critique, queer affect theory, and polyamory/compersion). 

 


Special Topics: Later 17th-Century Nonfictional Prose

English 165

Section: 7
Instructor: Starr, George A.
Time: TTh 6-7:30 P.M.
Location: 103 Wheeler


Other Readings and Media

For this course there are no required texts to purchase; all assigned and most recommended readings will be photocopied, or available electronically, or both. Among the authors--listed alphabetically rather than in any other possible order--will be John Aubrey, Isaac Barrow, Richard Baxter, Sir Thomas Browne, John Bunyan, Daniel Defoe, Thomas Fuller, Thomas Hobbes, John Locke, John Milton, Sir William Petty, Sir William Temple, John Tillotson, and Isaac Walton.

Description

Reading, discussing, and writing about British prose of the later 17th century. Among the genres to be considered will be representative samples of the “character” (of places as well as human types); the essay (controversial as well as meditative); history, biography, and memoir; polemic and homiletic divinity; and practical manuals on husbandry, cookery, fishing, &c.

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


Special Topics: Arts of Writing: Academic Writing, Grant Writing, Food Writing

English 165

Section: 8
Instructor: Schweik, Susan
Rahimtoola, Samia Shabnam
Time: TTh 11-12:30
Location: 301 Wheeler


Book List

Gilbert, Sandra and Roger Porter: Eating Words: A Norton Anthology of Food Writing ; Karsh, Ellen and Arlen Sue Fox: The Only Grant-Writing Book You’ll Ever Need ; McElrath , Tori O’Neal: Winning Grants Step by Step: The Complete Workbook for Planning, Developing and Writing Successful Proposals

Other Readings and Media

A course reader

Description

This course for juniors and seniors will help students develop writing skills through intensive focus on the demands of three very different modes: academic argument, popular and creative food writing (essay, poetry, travel, memoir, manifesto), and grant-writing. Reading and thinking together about good food, slow food, food memory, food access, sustainability, health, hunger, student food insecurity and food justice, we will alternate between 1) working on key skills for sophisticated academic writing, 2) writing creatively, meditatively, politically and playfully about food, and 3) collaborating on drafting an actual grant application in partnership with a local community organization. This last will be at the heart of this service-learning course.

Nadine Cruz has written: “Service is a process of integrating intention with action in a context of movement toward a just relationship…an intentionally designed program, a process of learning through reflection on the experience of doing service.” Writing is necessary for a great deal of action in the world, and it is a critical tool for reflection. Students in this class will hone argumentative and creative writing skills, learn the basics of the grant-writing process, gain valuable real-world writing experience, and explore ways of using writing as a tool for integrating action, intention and reflection. Plus we'll eat well and maybe cook together.

This small seminar will be limited to twelve students.


Special Topics: Ovid and the English Renaissance

English 165

Section: 9
Instructor: Landreth, David
Time: TTh 3:30-5
Location: 200 Wheeler


Book List

Dante: Inferno; Donne, J.: Major Works; Hardie, P.: Cambridge Companion to Ovid; Jonson, B.: Poetaster; Marlowe, C.: Complete Poetry; Marlowe, C.: Doctor Faustus; Ovid: Heroides; Ovid: Metamorphoses; Ovid: Poems of Exile; Petrarch: Poetry; Shakespeare, W.: A Midsummer Night's Dream; Shakespeare, W.: Complete Sonnets and Poems; Shakespeare, W.: The Tempest; Spenser, E.: Edmund Spenser's Poetry

Description

Her bosom was wrapped in smooth thin bark; her slender arms were changed to branches and her hair to leaves; her feet but now so swift were anchored fast in numb stiff roots; her face and head became the crown of a green tree. -- Ovid, Metamorphoses bk. 1

Of his bones are coral made;

Those are pearls that were his eyes;

Nothing of him that doth fade

But doth suffer a sea change

Into something rich and strange. -- Shakespeare, Tempest 1.2

The Roman poet of mythic transformation and urbane seduction, of distant longing and alien exile, Ovid infused the Renaissance with gorgeous pagan forms of desire, loss, and strangeness. His influence on literary culture was made only the more thrilling, and more pervasive, by the distance of fifteen centuries and by the radically contrary values and beliefs of Christian religion.

We'll read most of Ovid's major works in translation--Metamorphoses, his epic book of changes; Amores, his erotic lyric poems; Heroides, his collection of letters from the lovelorn women of myth; and Tristia, the lamentations of his exile to the barbarian frontier of the Roman Empire. We will trace how the greatest writers of sixteenth-century England engaged Ovid's strange pleasures and griefs in producing the richness and the strangeness of their own poetry and drama.

This course is open to English majors only.

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


Special Topics: Elizabethan Renaissance: Art, Culture, and Visuality

English 166

Section: 2
Instructor: Honig, Elizabeth
Time: MW 4-5:30 + discussion sections
Location: 106 Moffitt


Book List

Johnson, Ben: Bartholomew Fair; More, Sir Thomas: Utopia; Orgel, Stephen: The Illusion of Power;

Recommended: Alexander, Gavin, ed.: Sidney's 'The Defence of Poesy' and Selected Renaissance Literary Criticism

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, designers, 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 course satisfies the pre-1800 requirement for the English major.

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


Literature and the Arts: Literature and Music

English 170

Section: 1
Instructor: Falci, Eric
Time: MWF 11-12
Location: 122 Wheeler


Book List

Mackey, Nathaniel: Splay Anthem; Morrison, Toni: Jazz

Description

In this course, we will investigate the strangely vital links between literature and music. Beginning in the early 19th century, we’ll track a series of crossings, conjunctions, and fissures.  We’ll think about the place of music, and of ideas about music, within literary Romanticism.  We’ll watch what happens as classical music in the mid-nineteenth century becomes increasingly literary-minded, and consider how poets in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries experimented with notions of sound and rhythm.  We’ll pair a few of the key texts of literary modernism with touchstones of modern music.  We’ll trace the emergence of blues poetry and jazz poetry within the Harlem Renaissance and into the 1960s.  We’ll observe the basic categories of music and text dissolve and reform in the work of avant-garde writers and musicians throughout the twentieth century.  We’ll speculate about the literariness of folk and pop music and the poetics of hip hop.  Throughout, we’ll read and listen as poetry and narrative attempt to be like music, and songs and scores act like literature.  

The great majority of texts and music will be available in a course reader and/or on bCourses, and you will be responsible for writing two essays and taking a final exam.  


Literature and Psychology: Literature and the Brain

English 172

Section: 1
Instructor: Gang, Joshua
Time: TTh 3:30-5
Location: 109 Wheeler


Other Readings and Media

See below.

Description

What can the scientific study of mind tell us about literature? And what can literature tell us about the ways our minds and brains do—and do not—work? Looking at literature, philosophy, and the sciences of mind from the past three hundred years, these are some of the questions this course will try to answer. Philosophical topics will include: the relation between literary form and empirical problems of mind, such as self-knowledge and other minds; a priori knowledge; language acquisition and use; reductionism, physicalism, and theories of mind-brain identity (i.e., 'the hard problem'); behavior; psychoanalysis and hysteria; neuroaesthetics and the cognitive study of literature.

Literary readings will potentially include those by: Defoe, Coleridge, Mary Shelley, Woolf, Beckett, Pinter, Coetzee, Haddon, McEwan, and McCarthy. Philosophical and scientific readings will potentially include those by: Descartes, Locke, Hartley, Galvani, William James, Freud and Breuer, Watson, Thorndike, Wittgenstein, Ryle, Skinner, Quine, Place, Chomsky, Churchland, Nagel, Chalmers, Putnam, Noe and others.


The Language and Literature of Films: Hidden Hitchcock

English 173

Section: 1
Instructor: Miller, D.A.
Time: MW 11-12:30 + film screenings Thursdays 7-10 P.M.
Location: 300 Wheeler


Book List

Spoto, Donald: The Art of Alfred Hitchcock; Truffaut, François: Hitchcock

Other Readings and Media

Films will be available at the media center; the course reader will be put on B-courses.

Description

Few film styles have more successfully courted mass-audience understanding and approval than Hitchcock’s.  In the overstated lucidity of his narrative communication, nothing deserves our attention that his camera doesn’t go out of its way to point out.  But as anyone who has seen a Hitchcock film knows, the director primes us to be considerably more alert than this spoon-feeding requires.  In addition to our instrumental attention, we find ourselves possessed of a surplus watchfulness that has no object or use.  Even when Hitchcock is not enjoining us to “pay attention,” we remain poised behind a pane of vigilance, as if expecting to see something besides his unmissable danger signals and loud significance alerts.  We can’t help sensing that there is more to meet the eye in Hitchcock than, in his viewer-friendly manner, he arranges to greet the eye.  To watch a Hitchcock film is thus always to come under the spell of a hidden Hitchcock, and to want, somehow, to focus our surplus attention on this imaginary thing or being.  That esoteric dimension of his cinema will be the subject of this course.    In contradistinction to the games that Hitchcock is known to play with his Pavlovianly trained mass audience, I postulate a game he would be playing with that absurdly, pointlessly watchful spectator who dwells within us all, but whom, as members of a mass audience, or as critics in loyal alignment with it, we mostly put on lockdown; and whom I call the Too-Close Viewer. In this game, and for this viewer alone, Hitchcock would cultivate, alongside his manifest style with its hyperlegible images, a secret style that sows these images with radical duplicity.  


Literature and Philosophy

English 177

Section: 1
Instructor: Zhang, Dora
Time: TTh 2-3:30
Location: Note new location: 200 Wheeler


Other Readings and Media

See below.

Description

This class will be organized around three questions that have been of perennial concern to literary writers and philosophers: who are we? What can we know? How should we live? We’ll read a wide range of texts that respond to these questions in different ways, addressing issues such as: the nature of the self, social constructions of identity, truth and lying, faith and uncertainty, individualism and collectivity, power and knowledge, the claims of others (including animals), and the relations between humans and the environment. Along the way we will also think about the intersections between philosophy and literature, the unique constraints and possibilities of each genre, and what it means to read them together.

Sample authors include: Plato, Descartes, Hume, Berkeley, Kierkegaard, Nietzsche, Sartre, Fanon, Arendt, Foucault, Barthes, Montaigne, Mary Shelley, Borges, Kafka, Stevens, Coetzee, David Foster Wallace. (Final reading-list to be determined; may also include film.)

 


Autobiography: Disability Memoir

English 180A

Section: 1
Instructor: Kleege, Georgina
Time: TTh 11-12:30
Location: 122 Wheeler


Book List

Bauby, J-D. : The Diving Bell and the Butterfly; Danquah, M.: Willow Weep for Me; Forny, E.: Marbles: Mania, Depression, Michelangelo and Me; Galloway, T.: Mean Little Deaf Queer; Guest, P.: One More Theory about Happiness; Hathaway, K. : The Little Locksmith; Keller , H.: The World I live In; Kingsley & Levitz, J & M: Count Us In; Laborit, E.: The Cry of the Gull ; Simon , R. : Riding the Bus with My Sister

Description

This course will examine autobiography as a literary genre. We will survey the history of the genre and consider such questions as: How is reading autobiography like/unlike reading fiction? How do the truth claims made by autobiographies shape readers’ expectations? What are the forms and techniques autobiographers use to tell their stories?  The texts we are reading are all written by people with disabilities, so we will also discuss the impact that disability has on life-writing. Autobiographies written by people with disabilities offer readers a glimpse into lives at the margins of mainstream culture, and thus can make disability seem less alien and frightening. Disability rights activists, however, have criticized these texts because they tend to reinforce the notion that disability is a personal tragedy that must be overcome through superhuman effort, rather than a set of cultural conditions that could be changed to accommodate a wide range of individuals with similar impairments. Are these texts agents for social change or merely another form of freak show?

 


The Epic: Legends of Troy

English 180E

Section: 1
Instructor: Nolan, Maura
Time: TTh 2-3:30
Location: 159 Mulford


Book List

Chaucer: Troilus and Criseyde; Homer: Iliad; Homer: Odyssey; Shakespeare: Troilus and Cressida; Virgil: Aeneid

Description

Homer’s Iliad was composed in the eighth century BCE. Both the story that it narrated (the conflict between the Greeks and the Trojans) and the particular form that the story took (the genre of the epic) would become foundational building blocks of the Western literary tradition. This course will follow these two threads from antiquity to the Renaissance. We will read the story of Troy and the Trojans as it was told and retold by the Greeks (Homer’s Iliad and Odyssey), the Romans (Virgil’s Aeneid), in the Middle Ages (Chaucer’s Troilus and Criseyde), and in Elizabethan England (Shakespeare’s Troilus and Cressida). At the same time, we will see what happens to the genre of epic over time, as historical circumstances change and cultural priorities shift. We will define what we mean by “epic,” as well as what Homer, Virgil, Chaucer, and Shakespeare meant when they invoked the genre. Each of these texts imagines a world of possibilities and limitations; we will compare those freedoms and unfreedoms, what is speakable and unspeakable in Homer’s world versus Virgil’s world versus Chaucer’s world versus Shakespeare’s world. And will ask ourselves how the epic as a genre contributes to shaping the limitations and possibilities imagined by these texts.

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


The Novel: The Novel as "The Book of Other People"

English 180N

Section: 1
Instructor: Hale, Dorothy J.
Time: TTh 12:30-2
Location: 122 Wheeler


Other Readings and Media

See below.

Description

In 2007, Zadie Smith edited an anthology of short fiction entitled The Book of Other People.  In her preface to this volume, Smith describes her desire to give contemporary writers the opportunity to try on “different skins,” to wander “into landscapes one would not have placed them in previously.”  In 1993, Toni Morrison had already stressed the potentially high stakes of seeking out an encounter with difference through the novel.  Morrison declared her work as a novelist to be not just the imagination of “others,” but the risky encounter with strange or alien value systems: “to project consciously into the danger zones such others may represent for me.”

This course explores major works of Anglo-American fiction that link the value of the novel as a literary genre to the ethical, social or political good of encountering people different from oneself. Students should be prepared to read widely.  The literary tradition that we are studying includes George Eliot’s Middlemarch (1871), William Faulkner’s As I Lay Dying (1930), Virginia Woolf’s The Waves (1931), Zadie Smith’s On Beauty (2005), Nathaniel Hawthorne’s The Blithedale Romance (1852), Henry James’s The Turn of the Screw (1898), J.M. Coetzee’s Disgrace (1999), and Ian McEwan’s Sweet Tooth (2012).  Class discussion will focus on the narrative techniques that each novelist develops in response to the value and difficulty of knowing and representing social others.  We will consider how these narrative techniques contribute to an aesthetics of otherness, which by 2007 confers upon the novel a privileged status as the literary genre most qualified to be “the book of other people.”

Course requirements include two seven-page papers, a take-home final, and one class presentation.


Science Fiction

English 180Z

Section: 1
Instructor: Jones, Donna V.
Time:
Location: 122 Wheeler


Description

This course has been canceled.


Research Seminar: The Sixties

English 190

Section: 1
Instructor: Goble, Mark
Time: MW 10:30-12
Location: 305 Wheeler


Other Readings and Media

See below.

Description

This class will explore the literature, film, and art of the 1960s in America, with a particular focus on the complex interactions between various forms of modernism and the social movements whose politics, aesthetics, and cultural ambitions most powerfully challenged the conventions of everyday life in the period. The 1960s are regularly thought of as a time of “revolution,” a decade defined by such iconic struggles as the Civil Rights Movement, the opposition to the Vietnam War, and various contests for power on the part of women, gays and lesbians, Chicanos, Native Americans, and Asian Americans. While the legacies and mythologies of these movements are especially strong here in the Bay Area, we will be just as concerned with the global contours of 1960s culture as it registered in the United States, and with transformations in high art and cinema that reflected on the internal tensions and limits of radical politics.

Our texts will include novels by Thomas Pynchon, Mary McCarthy, Norman Mailer, Truman Capote, and James Baldwin; poetry by Robert Lowell, Elizabeth Bishop, Frank O’Hara, Gwendolyn Brooks, and the writers assembled for crucial anthology, The New American Poetry; and films including Alfred Hitchcock’s Psycho, Shirley Clarke’s The Cool World, and Stanley Kubrick’s 2001: A Space Odyssey, as well as works of experimental cinema by Michael Snow, Stan Brakhage and more.

Please read the paragarph about English 190 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: Through a Future Darkly: Global Crisis and the Triumph of Dystopia

English 190

Section: 2
Instructor: Danner, Mark
Time: M 3-6
Location: Note new location: 223 Wheeler


Other Readings and Media

See below.

Description

At what past moment did the future grow so dark? Formal liteary dystopia has been with us prominently since at least 1726, with the arrival of Swift's Gulliver. But the tendency to critique the present by imagining a darkly extrapolated future surely extends back much further—and grew in prevalence and popularity until the twentieth became the veritable dystopic century. Today central components of dystopian satire—global climate destruction, nuclear annihilation, terrorist states—have become commonplaces of our politics. In such a world has dystopia become prophetic, or redundant? In this seminar we will grapple with that question, and with the complex strategies of prophetic satire, as we explore the literature of dystopia present and past, plumbing increasingly murky visions of destruction to come.

Authors whose work we will read include Margaret Atwood, J.G. Ballard, Anthony Burgess, William Burroughs, Philip K. Dick, P.D. James, Franz Kafka, Jack London, Vladimir Nabokov, Flann O'Brien, Philip Roth, Vladimir Sorokin, H.G. Welles, and Yevgeny Zamyatin.

Please read the paragraph about English 190 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: Late Henry James

English 190

Section: 3
Instructor: Breitwieser, Mitchell
Time: MW 4-5:30
Location: 109 Wheeler


Book List

James, Henry: The Ambassadors; James, Henry: The Golden Bowl; James, Henry: The Wings of the Dove

Other Readings and Media

Henry James, several stories to be distributed through bCourses.

Description

Close readings of Henry James' notoriously difficult final novels. This will be a very demanding class, but a rewarding one too, I hope. Two ten-page essays will be required, along with regular attendance and participation in class discussion.

Please read the paragraph about English 190 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: 4
Instructor: Ellis, Nadia
Time: MW 4-5:30
Location: Note new location: 201 Giannini


Book List

Adichie, Chimamanda Ngozi: Americanah; Chandra, Vikram: Love and Longing in Bombay; Cole, Teju: Open City; Mpe, Phaswane: Welcome to our Hillbrow; Smith, Zadie: NW;

Recommended: O'Neill, Joseph: Netherland; Vladislavic, Ivan: Portrait with Keys

Other Readings and Media

Selections from: Sharifa Rhodes-Pitts, Harlem is Nowhere; Colin Channer (ed.) Kingston Noir.

Course Reader with essays by Baudelaire, Benjamin, Fanon, Baldwin, Michel de Certeau, Stuart Hall, Jose Munoz, Chris Abani, amongst others.

Film and Television: Raoul Peck, dir., Lumumba, la mort d'un prophète; Mira Nair, dir., Salaam Bombay; David Simon, exec. prod., The Wire and Treme [selected episodes]; Bregtje van de Haak, dir., Lagos/Koolhaas.

 

Description

In this seminar we will explore recent issues in postcolonial studies by focusing on cities. Moving through a diverse set of texts and very different cities—London and Lagos, Kingston and Mumbai, New York and Johannesburg, New Orleans among them—we will wonder: What makes a city postcolonial? For that matter, what makes a text postcolonial? Are there postcolonial ways to experience a city? What subjective experiences, and what narrative or aesthetic modes to describe them, emerge out of the urban postcolonial? In what sense might the United States be considered postcolonial?

You'll write weekly response papers and work up to a final research project on a Bay Area city and text of your choice.

Plese read the paragraph about English 190 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: Contemporary British Literature and Culture

English 190

Section: 5
Instructor: Falci, Eric
Time: MW 4-5:30
Location: 221 Wheeler


Book List

Barnes, Julian: England, England; James, P.D.: Children of Men; McEwan, Ian: Atonement; Rowling, J.K.: Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban; Smith, Zadie: NW

Description

In this course, we will investigate the literary and cultural landscape of contemporary Britain.  After several introductory sessions on the postwar period (1945-1979), we'll spend the bulk of our time working our way from the 1980s to the present.  We’ll read several novels, a clutch of poems, a short play or two, and a handful of essays; we’ll watch several films and a bit of television; and we’ll listen to some music.  We’ll sketch a capacious picture of British culture and literature, examining a variety of forms, modes, and genres.  You will be responsible for writing 2 essays: a 3-5 page close reading and a 15-20 page research paper.  

In addition to the novels listed, there will also be a course reader containing work by, among a few others, Philip Larkin, Linton Kwesi Johnson, Geoffrey Hill, Carol Ann Duffy, Daljit Nagra, Harold Pinter, A.L. Kennedy, Stuart Hall, Denise Riley, Raymond Williams, Salman Rushdie, Perry Anderson, and Tom Nairn.

Please read the paragraph about English 190 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: Classical and Renaissance Drama

English 190

Section: 6
Instructor: Knapp, Jeffrey
Time: MW 4-5:30
Location: note new room: 203 Wheeler


Book List

Aeschylus: The Oresteia; Aristophanes: The Clouds; Euripedes: The Bacchae; Jonson, Ben: The Alchemist; Kyd, Thomas: The Spanish Tragedy; Lyly, John: Gallathea; Marlowe, Christopher: Doctor Faustus; Seneca: Thyestes; Shakespeare, William: The Comedy of Errors, Hamlet, Twelfth Night; Sophocles: Antigone, Oedipus

Description

In a poem for the first edition of Shakespeare’s collected works, Ben Jonson expressed a characteristic ambivalence about classical drama.  On the one hand, he praised it as the standard by which all subsequent playwriting should be judged, while on the other hand, he derided “insolent Greece” and “haughty Rome” for having fallen short of Shakespeare.  Jonson did not stop to consider the difficulties of comparing plays that derive from different eras, different cultures, and different conceptions of the theater.  But our class will.  At the same time, we will explore how Renaissance dramatists both imitated their extraordinary precursors and strove to outdo them.

Please read the paragraph about English 190 on page 2 of the instructions area of this Announcement of Classes for more details about enrolling in or wait-listing for this course.

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

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


Research Seminar: Materiality: How the Physical World Is Made to Mean

English 190

Section: 7
Instructor: Flynn, Catherine
Time: TTh 9:30-11
Location: 210 Dwinelle


Other Readings and Media

Course Reader

Description

We might think of physical matter as being simply present, but the stuff of the world is and has been understood very differently in different times and cultures. This research seminar will explore a broad range of understandings of matter, from the Book of Genesis and early creation myths to recent documentaries on hoarders and self-help books on purging personal belongings. We will consider some of the major approaches to interpreting matter: philosophical, anthropological, ecological, psychoanalytic and Marxist. Throughout the semester, we will bring these ideas to bear on literary representations of physical material, as we read closely works by a wide range of writers including Ovid, William Wordsworth, John Keats, Thomas Carlyle, Charles Dickens, Emily Dickenson, W. B. Yeats, Marcel Proust, James Joyce, Gertrude Stein, Louis Aragon, Samuel Beckett and Karl Ove Knausgard.

Please read the paragraph about English 190 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: Vital Texts: Literature and the Discourse of Life

English 190

Section: 8
Instructor: Gaydos, Rebecca
Time: TTh 11-12:30
Location: 305 Wheeler


Book List

Kazuo, I.: Never Let Me Go; Shelley, M.: Frankenstein; Stoker, B.: Dracula; Venter, C.: Life at the Speed of Light

Other Readings and Media

A course reader including texts by Eramus Darwin, Immanuel Kant, Williams Wordsworth, Samuel Taylor Coleridge, Ralph Waldo Emerson, William James, Gertrude Stein, Henri Bergson, Ezra Pound, Wolfgang Köhler, W.H. Auden, Robert Duncan, Norbert Wiener, Katherine Hayles, Mark Hansen, Michel Foucault, and Achille Mbembe.

Films: F.W. Murnau, Nosferatu; James Whale, Frankenstein

Description

If the romantic trope of “organic form” naturalizes literature by likening literary texts to living organisms, it equally suggests that man-made forms can be "alive." In this course, our task will be to trace the trope of "organic form" through the romantic period into the 21st century, keeping in mind that the notion of "organic form" is thoroughly ambiguous: it at once grants literary forms a biological significance and challenges the traditional distinction between life and artifice. We will read romantic and modernist poetry that tries to capture the flowing rhythms of lived experience, and we will examine novelistic representations of artificial and unholy life--the undead and monstrous beings that test the very limits of life as a normative and scientific category. Moving into the contemporary era, we will investigate how the romantic interest in the ambiguity of life reemerges in recent debates around the politics and ethics of synthetic biology and biotechnological interventions into human (and nonhuman) bodies. How might the long history of literature's relationship to the living help us better understand and/or challenge contemporary forms of biopolitical control?

Please read the paragraph about English 190 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: Medieval and Renaissance Lyric

English 190

Section: 9
Instructor: Crosson, Chad Gregory
Time: TTh 2-3:30
Location: 204 Dwinelle


Book List

Hoffman, Richard: Middle English Lyrics; Keelan, Claudia: Truth of My Songs: Poems of the Trobairitz; Pearsall, Derek: Chaucer to Spenser: An Anthology; Waddell, Helen: Medieval Latin Lyrics; Young, David: The Poetry of Petrarch

Other Readings and Media

Course Reader

Description

From drinking songs and poems of seduction to works of religious meditation and devotion, the lyric reflects a variety of subjects and concerns.  This course serves as an extensive introduction to lyric poetry from the twelfth to the sixteenth century, from anonymous authors to Chaucer to Spenser.  We will consider what the term “lyric” means: How has it been defined?  How has that definition changed?  What happens to lyric form in the shift from the medieval to the renaissance?  We will also investigate what these poems say concerning sexuality and gender, religious faith, and subjectivity. 

Please read the paragraph about English 190 on page 2 of the instructions area of this Announcement of Classes for more details about enrolling in or wait-listing for this course.

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

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


Research Seminar: Purcell and Handel: Their Art in Setting English Texts to Music

English 190

Section: 10
Instructor: Hanson, Kristin
Time: TTh 3:30-5
Location: Note new location: 223 Wheeler


Other Readings and Media

A reader containing the texts to be studied as well as secondary readings will be available from University Copy.

Recordings of the music to be studied can be purchased through the Musical Offering or from other sources. These include: John Blow, Venus and Adonis,  Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment, Harmonium Mundi 1999; Henry Purcell, Dido and Aeneas,  Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra, Harmonium Mundi, 1994, rereleased 2006; Henry Purcell, King Arthur,  Les Arts Florissants, Erato, 1995; John Blow, Ode on the Death of Mr. Henry Purcell, Deller Consort, Harmonium Mundi, 1987; John Gay, The Beggar’s Opera, dir. by Jonathan Miller and John Eliot Gardiner, Image Entertainment, 2000; George Frederick Handel, Acis and Galatea, Dunedin Consort, Linn Records, 2008; George Frederick Handel, Alexander’s Feast.  The Sixteen, Coro, 2005; George Frederick Handel, An Ode for St. Cecilia’s Day, The King’s Consort, Hyperion, 2004; George Frederick Handel, L’Allegro, il Penseroso ed il Moderato, The King's Consort, Hyperion, 1999; George Frederick Handel, Messiah, Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra, Harmonium Mundi, 2005. 

Description

In the early 1600s, in England Shakespeare was exploring new ways of creating drama through language, with music often playing an important role, but a mostly distinct one.  In those same years, in Italy Monteverdi was exploring new ways of combining language with music to create the new dramatic genre of opera.   By the late 1600s, opera had come to England, too, preceded and followed by various other forms of dramatic vocal music – masques, odes, and oratorios  – in a remarkable set of collaborations between poets and composers.  Poems of Dryden and of Milton, for example, figured especially prominently in musical works of Purcell and Handel. 

These works thus afford beautiful opportunities for extended and detailed comparison of the artistic possibilities of poetry with those of music, for exploration of how the two forms can interact,  and for contextualization of aesthetic ideas from the period that continue to exert influence in our own time.    One area that will be given particular attention in the course will be rhythm, since it takes distinctive forms in poetry and in music, and the combination of the two in textsetting is an art form all its own.   No prior training in either of these areas is required, however. 

The course will include at least one outing to a live performance, the American Bach Soloists' performance of Handel’s setting of Dryden’s ode, Alexander’s Feast.  

Please read the paragraph about English 190 on page 2 of the instructions area of this Announcement of Classes for more details about enrolling in or wait-listing for this course.

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

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


Research Seminar

English 190

Section: 11
Instructor: Lee, Steven S.
Time:
Location:


Description

This section of English 190 has been canceled.

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


Research Seminar: Daniel Defoe and the Rise of the 18th-Century Novel

English 190

Section: 12
Instructor: Starr, George A.
Time: TTh 3:30-5
Location: 214 Haviland


Other Readings and Media

For purposes of seminar discussions we’ll probably rely on Penguin editions of Robinson Crusoe, A Journal of the Plague Year, Moll Flanders, and Roxana, and on Oxford editions of Captain Singleton and Colonel Jacque. For research purposes, and for some texts such as A New Voyage round the World not available in paperback, we’ll be using the electronic version of the 44-volume Pickering & Chatto edition of Defoe’s writings available from Intelex, and/or photocopies.

Description

Reading, discussing, and writing mainly about the fictional works of Daniel Defoe, and (depending on student interests) about contemporary writing on some of Defoe’s subjects, such as overseas commerce, colonies, and piracy; the predicaments of women and orphans in a patriarchal, class-governed society; the tensions between trade and morality, and between natural and supernatural, in an increasingly secular world, &c.

Please read the paragraph about English 190 on page 2 of the instructions area of this Annnouncement of Classes for more details about enrolling in or wait-listing for this course.

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

 

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


Research Seminar: Keats and Literary Tradition

English 190

Section: 13
Instructor: Francois, Anne-Lise
Time: TTh 5-6:30 P.M.
Location: 262 Dwinelle


Other Readings and Media

See below.

Description

This research seminar focuses on the poems and letters of John Keats. We will read his work in relation to some of his predecessors (Shakespeare, Milton) and near contemporaries (Wordsworth, Hazlitt) while addressing questions of the burdens of cultural capital, literary tradition, inheritance and progeny.

Please read the paragraph about English 190 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 H195B

Section: 1
Instructor: Otter, Samuel
Time: MW 4-5:30
Location: 206 Wheeler


Description

This course is a continuation of section 1 of H195A, taught by Samuel Otter in Fall 2015. No new students will be admitted, and no new application needs to be submitted. Professor Otter will give out CECS (class entry codes) in class in November.

There will be no additional texts ordered for the spring semester of this course.


Honors Course

English H195B

Section: 2
Instructor: Saul, Scott
Time: TTh 12:30-2
Location: 305 Wheeler


Description

This is a continuation of section 2 of H195A, taught by Scott Saul in Fall 2015. No new students will be admitted, and no new application form needs to be filled out. Professor Saul will give out CECs (class entry codes) in class in November.

There will be no additional texts ordered for the spring semester of this course.