Announcement of Classes: Fall 2016


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: Otter, Samuel
Time: MW 12:30-2
Location: C57 Hearst Annex


Book List

Barthes, Roland: S/Z; Dickinson, Emily: Complete Poems; Melville, Herman : Benito Cereno; Michaels, Walter: The Shape of the Signifier; Moretti, Franco: Distant Reading

Other Readings and Media

Photocopied reader

Description

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

Enrollment is limited to entering doctoral students in the English program.  This course satisfies the Group 1 requirement (problems in the study of literature).


Graduate Readings: On Life: Life Philosophy and Culture

English 203

Section: 1
Instructor: Jones, Donna V.
Time: MW 9:30-11
Location: C57 Hearst Annex


Other Readings and Media

The reading will be composed of both selections and whole texts from the following books.  Items marked with an * indicate chapters or articles found on bcourses:

Introduction
Elizabeth Grosz, The Nick of Time: Politics, Evolution and the Untimely
Roberto Esposito, Bios: Biopolitics and Philosophy
*  Melinda Cooper, Life as Surplus: Biotechnology and Capitalism in the Neoliberal Era

Nietzscheanism
Friedrich Nietzsche, On The Genealogy of Morals
*  Gregory Moore, Nietzsche, Biology and Metaphor 
Thomas Mann, Dr. Faustus: The Life of the Composer Adrian Leverkühn as Told by a Friend

Bergsonism
Henri Bergson, Creative Evolution
D.H. Lawrence, Women in Love
Aimé Césaire, Cahier d’un Retour Au Pays Natal (English and French edition), ed. Abiola Irele
*  Souleymane Bachir Diagne, African Art as Philosophy: Senghor, Bergson and the Idea of Négritude 
*  Mark Antliff, Avant-garde Fascism: The Mobilization of Myth, Art and Culture in France, 1909-1939

Biopower, Biopolitics, Empire and Race
Michel Foucault, Society Must Be Defended
Kazuo Ishiguro, Never Let Me Go
Octavia Butler, Clay's Ark 
Amitav Ghosh, The Calcutta Chromosome

Description

This course will explore the literary and cultural significance of philosophies of life. To set the course in motion, we shall begin with two provocative works: Terry Eagleton’s The Meaning of Life and Elizabeth Grosz’s The Nick of Time. In exploring the meaning of life, Eagleton takes us on a tour of the many meanings of life. In readings of Darwin, Nietzsche, Bergson and Deleuze, Grosz identifies life with temporality or a way of holding the past, present and future together.

The course will then be divided into three major sections, combining literary and philosophical works: Nietzscheanism, Bergsonism, and Biopower.

Our study of Nietzscheanism will culminate in a reading of Mann’s Dr. Faustus, whose protagonist embodies the temptations and dangers of Nietzschean Lebensphilosophie, but we shall begin with Nietzsche’s own affirmation of life against asceticism. We shall also study the interpretation of his philosophy developed by Georg Simmel, whose influence on cultural studies and philosophy is still underestimated. Anticipating Martin Heidegger, and in response to The Great War, Simmel registers the cultural shift from the affirmation of life to the authentic facing of death.

We shall then move to the study of Bergsonism. We shall read Bergson’s most culturally influential work, not his more strictly philosophical works. We shall investigate the fear of mechanical inelasticity and becoming automaton, his critiques of limits of mechanistic thinking about life, and his valorization of intuition and process as the epistemology and ontology suited to life, respectively. We shall then discuss how these ideas are thematized in works by D.H. Lawrence, Aimé Césaire and Leopold Senghor. But we will also attend to the visual arts to explore how vitalist themes were played out. On the one hand, Bergsonism provided a language with which to appreciate African art; on the other hand, the vitalist themes of Bergson and Georges Sorel were appropriated by the European fascist avant-garde.

The course will conclude with the recent discussion of the nature of life in the theorization of biopower, biopolitics, empire and critical race studies.

This course satisfies the Group 6 (Non-historical) requirement.

 


Graduate Readings: Early African American Literature

English 203

Section: 2
Instructor: Wagner, Bryan
Time: TTh 12:30-2
Location: 106 Mulford


Book List

Chesnutt, Charles W.: Conjure Tales and Stories of the Color Line; Chesnutt, Charles W.: The Marrow of Tradition; Douglass, Frederick: The Portable Frederick Douglass; Du Bois, W. E. B.: The Souls of Black Folk; Equiano, Olaudah: The Interesting Narrative and Other Writings; Harper, Frances E. W.: Iola Leroy, or Shadows Uplifted; Hopkins, Pauline E.: Of One Blood; Jacobs, Harriet: Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl; Reed, Austin: The Life and Adventures of a Haunted Convict; Walker, David: Appeal to the Coloured Citizens of the World; Wheatley, Phillis: Complete Writings

Description

Major works in the context of slavery and its aftermath. Advance syllabus here.

This course satisfies the Group 6 (Non-historical) requirement.


Graduate Readings: Prospectus Workshop

English 203

Section: 3
Instructor: Abel, Elizabeth
Time: W 3-6
Location: 225 Dwinelle


Book List

Recommended: Hayot, Eric: The Elements of Academic Style

Other Readings and Media

Weekly writing assignments will be uploaded to our bCourses site.

Description

This will be a hands-on writing workshop intended to facilitate and accelerate the transition from qualifying exams to prospectus conference, from prospectus conference to first dissertation chapter, and from the status of student to that of scholar. The workshop will provide a collaborative critical community in which to try out successive versions of your dissertation project and to learn how your peers are constructing theirs. Weekly writing assignments will structure points of entry into these projects. Beginning with exercises to galvanize your thinking, the assignments will map increasingly onto the specific components of the prospectus. We will also review a range of prospectuses from the past to demystify the genre and to gain a better understanding of its form and function. The goal is to insure that by the end of the semester, every member of the workshop will have submitted a prospectus to his or her committee. For students who complete a draft of the prospectus early in the semester, we will reserve time to consider it fully and to structure assignments relevant to the writing of the first chapter (including the question of which chapter should be written first). We will also discuss the dissertation in relation to the job market, conference papers, scholarly journals, and publishable articles.


Graduate Readings: Lyric, Poetry, Poetics

English 203

Section: 4
Instructor: Falci, Eric
Time: W 3-6
Location: 107 Mulford


Other Readings and Media

All readings will be available online and in a course reader.  Among a few other selections, we will most likely read texts by Wordsworth, Coleridge, Shelley, Mill, Keats, Arnold, Mallarmé, Pater, Hopkins, Yeats, Eliot, Moore, Pound, Stein, Olson, Richards, Empson, Wimsatt and Beardsley, Brooks, Valéry, Benjamin, Adorno, Abrams, de Man, Culler, Riffaterre, Lacoue-Labarthe, Celan, Derrida, Freud, Jakobson, Glissant, Barbara Johnson, Susan Stewart, Virginia Jackson, Lyn Hejinian, Charles Altieri, Marjorie Perloff, Robert Kaufman, Giorgio Agamben, Rachel Blau DuPlessis, Denise Riley, Juliana Spahr, Caroline Bergvall, Claudia Rankine, Lisa Robertson, and Simon Jarvis.

Description

This course will provide an introduction to poetics and theories of poetry, especially lyric poetry, since the early 19th century.  We will watch as conceptualizations of poetry, lyric, and verse torque and shift throughout the 19th and 20th centuries, beginning, roughly, with Wordsworth’s “Preface” to Lyrical Ballads and moving through the “New Lyric Studies” of our own critical moment.  We’ll look at a number of the key nineteenth- and twentieth-century statements on poetry and lyric as we reconsider the projects of the New Critics alongside of other types of formalist scholarship, the place of poetry within structuralism and deconstruction, and the importance of poetry in several varieties of Marxist aesthetics and psychoanalytic theories. As we come to more recent writings, we’ll investigate poetry in relation to matters of perception, subjectivity, cognition, technology, politics, ecology, and history. We will pay close attention to the shapes (formal, spatial, metrical, acoustic, generic) and textures (sonic, graphic, etymological, figural, rhythmic) of a small handful of poems, most of which will be dictated by our theoretical and critical readings, but some of which we’ll choose as a class at the start of the semester.  My hope is that the class is able to follow three interweaving tracks over the course of the semester: 1) the longer tradition of thinking about poetics since Wordsworth; 2) the course of contemporary scholarship on lyric and poetry over the past several decades; and 3) the routes taken by contemporary poets as they refashion lyric within their own practice.  All enrolled students will have the option of writing two conference-length papers (8-10 pages) or one article-length essay (20-25 pages).

This course satisfies the Group 4 or Group 5 requirement.


Old English

English 205A

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


Description

This course will not be offered in 2016-17 (or the following year, either), 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.


Readings in Middle English

English 212

Section: 1
Instructor: Miller, Jennifer
Time: MW 11-12:30
Location: note new location: D1 Hearst Annex


Description

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

This course satisfies the Group 2 (Medieval trhough Sixteenth Century) requirement.


Shakespeare

English 217

Section: 1
Instructor: Landreth, David
Time: TTh 2-3:30
Location: 186 Barrows


Book List

Shakespeare, W.: Norton Shakespeare, 3rd ed.

Description

An introduction to the study of Shakespeare at the graduate level. We'll examine a range of contemporary approaches to Shakespeare's plays and poems, and consider how they emerge from longstanding preoccupations across four hundred years of critical reception. I've ordered the Norton Shakespeare at the bookstore, but you may use any recent edition of the texts.

This course satisfies the Shakespeare requirement or the Group 2 (Medieval through Sixteenth Century) requirement.


Poetry Writing Workshop

English 243B

Section: 1
Instructor: O'Brien, Geoffrey G.
Time: F 11-2
Location: B40 Hearst Annex


Other Readings and Media

All readings will be available online.

Description

Studies in contemporary poetic cases (Graham Foust, Sarah Nicholson, Morgan Parker, Juliana Spahr, Jenny Zhang, and others)  will focus our discussions of each other's poems.

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 applicaiton you'll find there and attach the writing sample as a Word document or .rtf file. The deadline for completing this application process is midnight, THURSDAY, APRIL 28.

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.


Research Seminar: Representing Non-Human Life in Seventeenth- and Eighteenth-Century Britain

English 250

Section: 1
Instructor: Picciotto, Joanna M
Time: M 3-6
Location: 107 Mulford


Book List

Browne: The Garden of Cyrus; Darwin: The Botanic Garden; Derham: Physico-Theology; Godwin: The Man on the Moone; Goodman: The Creatures Praysing God; Hooke: Micrographia; Hutchinson: Order and Disorder; Power: Experimental Philosophy; Smart: Jubilate Agno; Sylvester: The Divine Weeks of the World's Birth; Topsell: The History of Four-Footed Beasts; Walwyn: Spirits Moderated

Other Readings and Media

Note:  Students will be given PDFs to access the texts.

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 contemporary debates over 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 from whose “place”) the author tries to speak. 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.

Secondary reading will be drawn from the history of science, with some philosophy.

All readings will be made available for free on the course site and for money as a course reader.

This course satisfies the Group 3 (Seventeenth through Eighteenth Century) requirement.


Research Seminar: Ethnic Modernisms

English 250

Section: 2
Instructor: Lee, Steven S.
Time: Tues. 3:30-6:30
Location: 129 Barrows


Book List

McKay, C: Banjo; Toomer, J: Cane

Description

This seminar will explore the convergence of modernist and ethnic cultures in twentieth-century America and Europe, placing race and ethnicity in dialogue with the modernist compulsion to "make it new" and the avant-gardist compulsion to bring art into life.  The aim of these juxtapositions will be to arrive at new understandings of both ethnicity and modernism--specifically, new ways of thinking about these terms in relation to space, time, identity, and aesthetics.  After gaining a firm grounding in critical race theory and theories of modernism and the avant-garde, we will examine a wide range of novels, poems, films, and paintings.  Our focus will be on American minority artists drawn to modernist experimentation (for instance, Langston Hughes’s translations of Vladimir Mayakovsky), but also on modernist engagement with non-Western cultures (for instance, Pablo Picasso’s incorporation of African masks).  How do the aims of ethnic literature (cultural recognition, the disruption of canons) correspond with the aims of modernism and the avant-garde?  How does the juxtaposition of these terms help us to see beyond the fissures contained within each, as well as to bridge the larger divide between art and politics?

Most readings will be distributed via bCourses.  We'll definitely be reading McKay's Banjo and Toomer's Cane; other texts for purchase will be announced at the first class meeting.

This course satisfies the Group 5 (Twentieth Century) or Group 6 (Non-historical) requirement.


Research Seminar: Literature and the Brain

English 250

Section: 3
Instructor: Gang, Joshua
Time: Thurs. 3:30-6:30
Location: 186 Barrows


Other Readings and Media

See below.

Description

As imaging and computational technologies become more adept at measuring the neurology of reading and writing, literary study faces a number of challenges. Some of these challenges—like instrumentalizing fMRI data or working with live subjects—are relatively recent and raise new questions about what literary criticism can entail. But other difficulties—like literary study’s approach to empirical problems of mind, or the relation between aesthetic experiences and brain states, or the apparent gap between quantitative research and determinations of value—aren’t new at all. These problems already have long literary, scientific, philosophical, and critical histories. And as interest intensifies in cognitive literary study, these older problems intensify and their histories become even more important to know.

Looking across literary periods and national traditions, “Literature and the Brain” will examine both the opportunities and difficulties that cognitive science and philosophy of mind afford to literary criticism. Topics of discussion will include: the relation of self-knowledge, other minds, and dualism to literary form and convention; language acquisition and use; theories of physicalism, supervenience, and multiple realizability; intention, interiority, and memory; theory of mind; the relation of cognitive literary study to older models of literary criticism and “theory”; and recent discussions of neuroaesthetics, cultural neuroscience, Darwinian approaches to literature etc.

Literary readings will likely include those by Dante, Cavendish, Mary Shelley, Coleridge, Woolf, Faulkner, Beckett, Pinter, Haddon, Fanon, Coetzee, McEwan, and Kronovet.

Philosophical and scientific readings will likely include those by Plato, Aristotle, Aquinas, Descartes, Locke, Hobbes, Hume, Hartley, Kant, Bell, James, Lashley, Watson, Skinner, Wittgenstein, Chomsky, Ryle, Sellars, Anscombe, Place, Fodor, Putnam, Davidson, Nagel, Churchland, Gleason, Libet, Mele, Searle, Johnson-Laird, Goldman, Chalmers, Noë, and others.

Critical readings will likely include those by Richards, Wimsatt and Beardsley, Lukács, Kramnick, Lynch, Scarry, Dames, Bérubé, Zunshine, Phelan, Starr, Spiller, Richardson, Jager and Savarese, Ohmann, Vermeule, Spolsky, Phillips, Easterlin, and others.

This course satisfies the Group 6 (Non-historical) requirement.


Field Studies in Tutoring Writing

English 310

Section: 1
Instructor: T. B. A.
Time: T. B. A.
Location: T. B. A.


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 1. No one will be admitted after the first week of fall classes.

This course may not be counted as one of the twelve courses required to complete the undergraduate English major nor may it be counted to satisfy a graduate-level requirement.


The Teaching of Composition and Literature

English 375

Section: 1
Instructor: Snyder, Katherine
Time: Thurs. 10:30-12:30
Location: C57 Hearst Annex


Other Readings and Media

Recommended texts:  Davis, B. Tools for Teaching (e-text available through UCB library website); Rosenwasser, D. and Stephen, J.: Writing Analytically (Cengage Learning, 7th ed. 2012) 

All required readings will be posted on bCourses and/or available in a Course Reader. 

Description

Co-taught by a faculty member and a graduate student instructor (the department's R & C Assistant Coordinator), this course introduces new English GSIs to the practice and theory of teaching literature and writing at UC Berkeley in sections linked to English 45 and select upper-division courses, as well in R1A and R1B, and beyond. At once a seminar and a hands-on practicum, the class will cover topics such as strategies for leading discussion, teaching critical reading skills and the elements of composition, responding to and evaluating student writing, developing paper topics and other exercises, and approaching the other responsibilities that make up the work of teaching here and elsewhere. The course will offer a space for mutual support, individual experimentation, and the discovery of each member's pedagogical style. We hope to pair each class participant with an experienced GSI teaching in R1A or R1B, so that new teachers can observe different kinds of teaching situations and classes besides their own. There will also be opportunities to be observed teaching and to receive feedback during the term. 

This course satisfies the Pedagogy Requirement.