Announcement of Classes: Fall 2018


History of the English Language

English 101

Section: 1
Instructor: Hanson, Kristin
Time: TTh 11-12:30
Location: 174 Barrows


Book List

Millward, Celia: A 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.


Introduction to Old English

English 104

Section: 1
Instructor: Hobson, Jacob
Time: MWF 11-12
Location: 310 Hearst Mining


Book List

Marsden, Richard: Cambridge Old English Reader

Description

This course will equip you to read the earliest English literature: lives of saints, accounts of Viking invasion, poetry about onions, and the rest. You will learn to read Old English by direct study of texts in the original. This course will help you engage the English language critically and with historical perspective, and our readings offer a window onto the cultural practices of Anglo-Saxon England, including its religion, politics, and education.

No prior experience with Old English or MIddle English is required.

Please note the change in the instructor (as of 7/5/18).

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


Medieval Literature

English 110

Section: 1
Instructor: Miller, Jennifer
Time: MWF 2-3
Location: 222 Wheeler


Other Readings and Media

A course reader

Description

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

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


Shakespeare in the Theater: Cymbeline

English 117T

Section: 1
Instructor: Marno, David
Time: Lectures MWF 2-3 in 310 Hearst Mining, plus rehearsals MW 3-4:30 in 300 Wheeler
Location:


Description

Imagine that the play is an exquisite silk dress. In lectures, we look at it from many different angles; we consider the materials it’s made of; we imagine who made it and why; we listen to the sounds it makes as it moves. If you ever felt intrigued by the thought of what it would feel like to put it on, this is a class for you. During the semester, we will not only close read, analyze and interpret one of Shakespeare’s strangest plays, Cymbeline, King of Britain, we will also have an opportunity to perform our own version of it.

To be sure, this is a literature class, and our purpose isn’t to stage the finest ever version of the play, but to use performance as one more tool that will help us understand Shakespeare’s text. In addition to the play, we will read some of its textual sources, critical essays on Shakespeare and Renaissance drama, some performance theory, and we will also watch theatrical and film adaptations of various Shakespeare plays. No previous acting experience required.

Required book: William Shakespeare, Cymbeline, ed. Barbara Mowat and Paul Werstine. Additional readings will be posted on bCourses and/or distributed in class.

NOTE:  Students should plan to attend, in addition to the lectures, the twice-weekly rehearsals, which will take place MW 3-4:30 in 300 Wheeler. Some additional rehearsals may also be needed as the performance date approaches.

NOTE ALSO:  Because this course concentrates on one play only, it will not satisfy the Shakespeare requirement for English majors.


Milton

English 118

Section: 1
Instructor: Goodman, Kevis
Time: MW 5-6:30
Location: 101 Moffitt


Book List

Milton, John: The Complete Poetry and Essential Prose of John Milton

Description

Probably the most influential and famous (and, in his own time, infamous) literary figure of the seventeenth century, John Milton has too often been misrepresented as a mainstay of a traditional canon rather than as the rebel he was. Those who do not know his work frequently assume that he was a remote or traditional religious poet, although in fact he was an independent and unconventional thinker, who distrusted any passively held faith and was relentlessly self-questioning. As we follow Milton’s carefully shaped career from the shorter early poems, through some of the controversial prose of the English Civil War era, and into the astounding work that emerged in the wake of political defeat (Paradise Lost, Paradise RegainedSamson Agonistes), we will discover a very different literary and political figure, known in his time as a statesman as well as a poet, and in both pursuits considered more an iconoclast than an icon. We will come to understand Milton’s writing in relation to the political and scientific revolutions that he witnessed and in which he took part, and we will also think about his experiments in poetic form, his ambivalent incorporations, revisions, and expansions of classical literature and biblical texts alike, the literary dimension of his often unorthodox theology, his writings on love, marriage, and divorce, his life-long preoccupation with vocation – and more.

Note: This single textbook for the course is a necessity: John Milton, The Complete Poetry and Essential Prose of John Milton, ed. William Kerrigan, John Rumrich, and Stephen Fallon (Modern Library). Avoid Kindle versions, which are problematic. Cheap, used copies should be available online ($15 as of the writing of this description).

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


The Romantic Period

English 121

Section: 1
Instructor: Francois, Anne-Lise
Time: TTh 12:30-2
Location: 155 Barrows


Description

Romanticism was once defined as a turn toward “nature” in response to the industrialization marking Britain’s transition to modern capitalism in the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries.  Rather than simply resurrecting the idea of the Romantic poets as “nature” poets, we will carefully examine figures of reflection and grounding, dispersal and dwelling, in these writers, while also searching for alternatives to the curative role often assigned both “nature” and “poetry” in environmentalist criticism.  Topics will include: the gendering of “nature”; the conflict between “modernity” and “modernization” and the persistence of marginalized communities; agriculture as a border-space between “culture” and “nature”; the role of memory and imagination in sustaining a sense of place; weather-reporting, plant-study and other practices of attention; fantasies about ecological disaster, social catastrophe, and science’s ability to save or destroy humankind. As we compare different definitions of “nature”—as a set of finite, exploitable resources, a normative authority limiting human experimentation, a repository of traditional ways of doing and knowing, and a site of vulnerability in need of protection from extinction—we will also explore the alternatives to the nature/human binary developed by the writers in question. 

We will read one non-Romantic-period work--Rachel Carson’s Silent Spring (published 1962)--so as to test the thesis that this environmental classic reads as an example of the gothic novel; we will compare the slow and delayed temporality of environmental violence to the slow, incremental, recursive temporality of Romantic poetry and prose.

Readings will include works by Austen, Blake, Carson, Clare, Coleridge, Keats, Radcliffe, Mary Shelley, Percy Shelley, Dorothy Wordsworth, and William Wordsworth.

Book list (All other texts will be available electronically on the course’s b-space site.)  

Required books will be available at University Press Books, 2430 Bancroft:

Longman Anthology of British Literature, Volume 2A: The Romantics and their Contemporaries, 5th Edition; Jane Austen, Mansfield Park; Rachel Carson, Silent Spring; Ann Radcliffe, The Mysteries of Udolpho; Mary Shelley, Frankenstein; Dorothy Wordsworth, Grasmere and Alfoxden Journal


Victorian Period

English 122

Section: 1
Instructor: Lavery, Grace
Time: Lectures MW 12-1 + one hour of discussion section per week (sec. 101: F 12-1; sec. 102: F 2-3)
Location: Lectures: 2 LeConte; disc. secs. in different locations


Book List

Dickens, Charles: The Old Curiosity Shop; Eliot, George: Daniel Deronda; Rossetti, Christina: Major Poems; Swinburne, A. C.: Major Poems

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.


The European Novel: Society and Desire

English 125C

Section: 1
Instructor: Flynn, Catherine
Time: TTh 2-3:30
Location: 182 Dwinelle


Book List

Dostoyevsky, Fyodor: Crime and Punishment ; Edgeworth, Maria: Castle Rackrent ; Huysmans, Joris-Karl: A Rebours; Mann, Thomas: Death in Venice; Rabelais, Francois: Gargantua and Pantagruel; Voltaire: Candide

Description

This course will examine diverse instances of the European novel from the sixteenth to the twentieth century and consider how appetites of various kinds feature as organizing forces. How do hunger, lust, material greed, and the desire for order, beauty, and freedom structure these novels? What types of collectives are created through these desires? What kinds of individuality are conceived?

The English Department is working on expanding the class size for this offering. If you would like to enroll in this course after it fills, please put yourself on the wait list and if we are able to accommodate you, you will be added as soon as possible (no later than the first week of classes). 


The European Novel: The Many Faces of the 19th-Century European Novel

English 125C

Section: 2
Instructor: Golburt, Luba
Time: TTh 5-6:30
Location: 88 Dwinelle


Description

The novel emerged as the principal literary genre in 19th-century Europe and has continued to dominate the literary market in Europe and North America ever since. What were the constitutive formal elements as well as social and psychological concerns of novelistic narrative in the period of its greatest ascendancy? Focusing on a selection of novels from the German, English, French, and Russian traditions, this course examines the many guises the novel assumed in the process of its becoming, over the course of the 19th century, the central genre within which key social, political, and aesthetic issues of its time could be deliberated.

All novels considered in this course are markedly experimental. Each showcases a different dimension of the novel genre: Johann Wolfgang von Goethe's The Sorrows of Young Werther (1774) is a sentimental epistolary novel; Mary Shelley's Frankenstein (1818), an epistolary Gothic horror novel that also lays the groundwork for the emergence of science fiction; Alexander Pushkin's Eugene Onegin (1823-1831), an ironic and fragmentary novel in verse; Gustave Flaubert's Madame Bovary (1856), a novel that establishes the model of modern realist narration; and finally Leo Tolstoy's magisterial War and Peace (1865-1869), a text that can be loosely termed a historical novel while raising crucial questions about the very premises of what it means to be historical and novelistic.

This class is cross-listed with Slavic 133.

Book List (specified editions are highly recommended; print versions preferred to digital):

Goethe, The Sorrows of Young Werther, trans. David Constantine; Oxford World Classics, 978-0199583027

Shelley, Frankenstein, ed. J. Paul Hunter; Norton Critical Editions, 978-0-393-92793-1

Pushkin, Eugene Onegin, trans. James Falen; Oxford University Press, 978-0199538645

Flaubert, Madame Bovary, ed. Margaret Cohen; Norton Critical Editions, 978-0393979176

Tolstoy, War and Peace; trans. Louise and Aylmer Maude; Norton Critical Editions, 978-0393966473


The 20th-Century Novel

English 125D

Section: 1
Instructor: Jones, Donna V.
Time: TTh 11-12:30
Location: 20 Barrows


Book List

Carpentier, Alejo: The Lost Steps; Dreiser, Theodore: Sister Carrie; Gibson, William: Neuromancer; Hardy, Thomas: Jude the Obscure; Mann, Thomas: Doctor Faustus; Woolf, Virginia: Mrs. Dalloway

Description

This course is a survey of the 20th-century novel. The novel is the quintessential form of expression of modernity and modern subjectivity. In this survey of key works of the century, we will explore the novel form as it is framed by these three thematics: history, modernism, and empire. Some questions we will address: how have the vicissitudes of modernity led to a re-direction of historical narration within the novel; how has modernist aesthetic experimentation re-shaped the very form of the novel; and, lastly, how has the phenomenon of imperialism, the asymmetrical relations of power between center and periphery, widened the scope and influence of fictive milieu? We will conclude at the cusp of the 21st century with a work of speculative fiction.

The English Department is working on expanding the class size for this offering. If you would like to enroll in this course after it fills, please put yourself on the wait list and if we are able to accommodate you, you will be added as soon as possible (no later than the first week of classes). 


The Contemporary Novel: The Latest Pulitzer Prize-Winning Novels

English 125E

Section: 1
Instructor: Wong, Hertha D. Sweet
Time: Lectures MW 11-12 + one hour of discussion section per week (sec. 101: F 11-12; sec. 102: F 2-3; sec. 103: Thurs. 9-10; sec. 104: Thurs. 10-11)
Location: Lectures: note new room: 212 Wheeler; disc. secs. in different locations


Book List

Batuman, Elif: The Idiot; Diaz, Herman: In the Distance; Doerr, Anthony: All the Light We Cannot See; Greer, Andrew Sean: Less; Nguyen, Viet Thanh: The Sympathizer; Whitehead, Colson: The Underground Railroad

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 four most recent (2015-2018) Pulitzer-Prize winning novels and two novels nominated for the Pulitzer in 2018. 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 topics and styles selected for the Pulitzer as well. We will spend the last one-third, or so, of the course reading and responding to the three novels nominated for the Prize in 2018. Working in small groups, you will take on the role of the Pulitzer Prize Committee, writing responses to, assessments of, and recommendations about each of the novels and making a strong case for which novel deserves the award.

Incomplete Primary Reading (in chronological order of Pulitzer Prize, 2015-2018):

Doerr, Anthony.  All the Light We Cannot See (2015)

Nguyen, Viet Thanh. The Sympathizer (2016)

Whitehead, Colson. The Underground Railroad (2017)

Batuman, Elif.  The Idiot (2018)

Diaz, Hernan.  In the Distance (2018)

Greer, Andrew Sean.  Less (2018)

Secondary Reading:

Assorted essays uploaded to bCourses.


British Literature, 1900-1945

English 126

Section: 1
Instructor: Gang, Joshua
Time: MWF 2-3
Location: 182 Dwinelle


Book List

Conrad, Joseph: Heart of Darkness; Greene, Graham: The Third Man; Joyce, James: Ulysses; Spark, Muriel: The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie; West, Rebecca: Return of the Soldier; Woolf, Virginia: The Waves

Other Readings and Media

The required books listed above will be available at University Press Books (2430 Bancroft Ave). A required course reader will be available from Metro Publishing (2440 Bancroft Ave).

Description

How did British and Irish literature change over the first half of the twentieth-century? Was “modernism” a historical moment, an aesthetic movement, or a critical attitude—or some combination of the three? How did writers contend with upheavals such as Irish nationalism, World Wars I and II, suffrage, fascism, and the fluctuations of empire? And how did conventional literary forms respond to the advents of film, radio, and television? These are some of the questions this course will try to answer. Evaluation will be based on a combination of papers, exams, and course participation.

Readings will likely include: Conrad, Heart of Darkness; Lewis et al, BLAST; West, Return of the Soldier; Joyce, Ulysses; Woolf, The Waves; Spark, The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie; Greene, The Third Man; Synge, Playboy of the Western World; manifestos by Marinetti and Loy; and poetry by Hardy, Yeats, Eliot, Auden, Smith, WWI combatants, Derek Walcott, Kamau Brathwaite, and others. 

The English Department is working on expanding the class size for this offering. If you would like to enroll in this course after it fills, please put yourself on the wait list and if we are able to accommodate you, you will be added as soon as possible (no later than the first week of classes). 


Modern Poetry

English 127

Section: 1
Instructor: Blanton, C. D.
Time: TTh 11-12:30
Location: 222 Wheeler


Book List

Eliot, T. S.: Prufrock and Other Observations; Ara Vos Prec; The Waste Land; Four Quartets; Pound, Ezra: Blast; Lustra; Hugh Selwyn Mauberley; A Draft of XVI Cantos; Pisan Cantos; Stevens, Wallace: Harmonium; Ideas of Order; The Man with the Blue Guitar; Parts of a World; Yeats, W.B.: Responsibilities; The Wild Swans at Coole; Michael Robartes and the Dancer; The Tower; The Winding Stair

Description

This course will concentrate intensively on four poets at the center of the modernist poetic canon: T. S. Eliot, Ezra Pound, Wallace Stevens, and W. B. Yeats. We will read several volumes by each, but will do so chronologically, in the order of their publication, between 1914 and 1945.


American Literature: 1800-1865

English 130B

Section: 1
Instructor: Breitwieser, Mitchell
Time: TTh 12:30-2
Location: note new location: 155 Kroeber


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 and Civil Disobedience; Whitman, Walt: Leaves of Grass, the Original 1855 edition

Description

On July 4 fifty years after the Declaration of Independence was signed, both John Adams and Thomas Jefferson died, an astonishing coincidence that many Americans took to signify the ending of the revolutionary era, and the beginning of a new phase in American nationality. They had little in their national past to draw upon in forming a sense of identity, and the material and cultural sparseness of the present seemed to offer little more, so they began to think of themselves as forerunners to an historically unprecedented future greatness to be realized in the vast territorial expanse that the U.S. had become. This idealizing imagination of magnificent destiny sharply contrasted with social, political and economic realities—slavery, imperialist expansionism, Indian relocation, and the wrenching dislocations of emergent capitalism. Each of the works we will read in this class is an exploration of that contradiction, a measurement of the experiential consequences of those severe historical powers, and an evaluation of the credibility of American national optimism under the growing threat of civil war.

Class meetings will mix lecture and discussion. I will be referring to individual passages to be discussed by page number, so you should purchase the assigned editions of the books (being ordered through the campus bookstore) to make following along easier. Two eight-page essays and a final exam will be required, along with regular attendance.


African American Literature and Culture Before 1917

English 133A

Section: 1
Instructor: Wagner, Bryan
Time: TTh 2-3:30
Location: 106 Wheeler


Book List

Brown, William Wells: Clotel; Chesnutt, Charles: The Marrow of Tradition; Douglass, Frederick: Narrative of the Life; DuBois, W. E. B.: The Souls of Black Folk; Dunbar, Paul Laurence: Lyrics of Lowly Life; Equiano, Olaudah: Interesting Narrative of the Life; Harper, Frances E. W.: Iola Leroy; Jacobs, Harriet: Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl; Walker, David: Appeal to the Coloured Citizens of the World; Wells-Barnett, Ida B.: Mob Rule in New Orleans; Wheatley, Phillis: Poems on Various Subjects

Other Readings and Media

We will also be reading shorter works by Anna Julia Cooper, Alexander Crummell, Ottobah Cuguano, Martin Delany, Sutton Griggs, Jupiter Hammon, Edmonia Highgate, Victor Séjour, Maria Stewart, Lucy Terry, Sojourner Truth, Nat Turner, Booker T. Washington, and Robert Alexander Young.

All texts are available on the course website and on reserve in the library. There are no books to purchase.

Description

This course explores African American literary history from its beginning in the eighteenth century to the turn of the twentieth century, interpreting major works in the context of slavery and its aftermath. We will reflect on the complicated relationship between literature and political activism by examining the genres and formal devices through which African Americans responded to the demand for individual and collective self-representation. Themes include authorship and authenticity, captivity and deliverance, law and violence, memory and imagination, kinship and miscegenation, passing and racial impersonation. Required works by authors such as Phillis Wheatley, Frederick Douglass, Harriet Jacobs, and W. E. B. Du Bois will be supplemented by reading in history, theory, and criticism. Syllabus here.


Topics in African American Literature and Culture: The Art of Black Diaspora -- Do What You Gotta Do

English 133T

Section: 1
Instructor: Ellis, Nadia
Time: TTh 9:30-11
Location: 104 Barrows


Book List

Adichie, Chimamanda Ngozi: Americanah; Gyasi, Yaa: Homegoing; Hartman, Saidiya: Lose Your Mother; Head, Bessie: A Question of Power; Hurston, Zora Neale: Their Eyes Were Watching God; Larsen, Nella: Passing; McKay, Claude: Home to Harlem; Scott, Dennis: An Echo in the Bone; Soyinka, Wole: The Beatification of Area Boy

Other Readings and Media

The texts for this class will be available at University press Books, Bancroft Avenue.

Films: Daughters of the Dust, dir. Julie Dash (1991); Moonlight, dir. Barry Jenkins, writer Tarell Alvin McCraney (2016); Black Panther; dir. Ryan Coogler (2018)

Music: 'Nuff Said, Nina Simone (1968); Marcus Garvey, Burning Spear (1975); Lemonade, Beyoncé (2016)

Course Reader with works by Marcus Garvey, Alain Locke, Katherine Dunham, James Baldwin, Stuart Hall, Mintz & Price, and others, available at Copy Central, Bancroft Avenue.

Description

Just find that dappled dream of yours
Come on back and see me when you can

– "Do What You Gotta Do," Clarence Carter (& Nina Simone & Roberta Flack, et al...)

The black diaspora is, amongst other things, a literary tradition: a complex, cross-generic set of texts produced by black writers located in almost every nation across the globe, equal in complexity and variation to the modern concept of race that is inextricably tied to its formation. But how can one conceptual framework possibly contain such a dazzlingly various canon? In this class we’ll read novels, watch films, listen to music, and look at art to begin to answer that question. As the sub-title of the course suggests, we’ll begin with a certain supposition: that something particular happens when we think of black diasporic creativity as emerging between imperative and dream (…you gotta do); between roving and recovery (come on back...). We'll ask about the necessities of black invention; about its luxuries, its excesses, and its pleasures. And we'll use diasporic theory to think about what happens, politically and conceptually, when we attend to black differences as we do to the shifts in tonality and meaning between versions of a song.

The texts for this course will be available at University Press Books, on Bancroft Way. Please contact the instructor before buying texts.


The Cultures of English: Cultures of the Great War: Art in the Age of Decline

English 139

Section: 1
Instructor: Jones, Donna V.
Time: TTh 2-3:30
Location: 229 Dwinelle


Book List

The Penguin Book of First World War Poetry; Breton, Andre: Nadja; Fussel, Paul: The Great War and Modern Memory; H.D.: Kora and Ka; Stein, Gertrude: Autobiography of Alice B. Toklas; Woolf, Virginia: Mrs. Dalloway

Description

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

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


Modes of Writing (Exposition, Fiction, Verse, etc.)

English 141

Section: 1
Instructor: Giscombe, Cecil S.
Time: MW 5-6:30
Location: 310 Hearst Mining


Book List

Lopate, Philip : The Art of the Personal Essay; Mullen, Harryette: Sleeping With the Dictionary; Rios, Joseph: Shadowboxing

Other Readings and Media

Texts will include chunky course readers—available from ZZ Copies—concerning poetry and fiction.

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 read published work by our predecessors and by contemporary writers (including Maxine Hong Kingston, Angela Carter, and William Kennedy); 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, hybrid texts, ghost stories, and sonnets.  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.

Discussion, workshopping, writing prompts.


Short Fiction

English 143A

Section: 2
Instructor: Serpell, C. Namwali
Time: TTh 11-12:30
Location: 180 Barrows


Other Readings and Media

A course pack will be made available online with short stories by Anton Chekhov, Franz Kafka, H.P. Lovecraft, Flannery O'Connor, Lucia Berlin, Octavia Butler, Edward P. Jones, Alice Munro, Peter Orner, Kristen Roupenian, and George Saunders.

Description

This workshop is designed to hone basic elements of the short story. We will read some exceptional stories in a variety of genres. We will compose and revise 1-2 stories over the course of the semester. 

Only continuing 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 docoument or .rtf file. The deadline for completing this application process is 11 PM, THURSDAY, APRIL 26.

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: Abrams, Melanie
Time: TTh 3:30-5
Location: note new location: 115 Barrows


Other Readings and Media

Reader available at Instant Copying and Laser Printing, 2138 University Ave. (between Shattuck Ave. & Walnut St.), (510) 704-9700.

Description

The aim of this course is to explore the genre of short fiction –  to discuss the elements that make up the short story, to talk critically about short stories, and to become comfortable and confident with the writing of them.  Students will write two short stories, a number of shorter exercises, weekly critiques of their peers’ work, and be required to attend and review two fiction readings.  The course will be organized as a workshop and attendance is mandatory. All student stories will be edited and critiqued by the instructor and by other students in the class.

Only continuing 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 11 PM, THURSDAY, APRIL 26.

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: Nicholson, Sara
Time: TTh 2-3:30
Location: 186 Barrows


Book List

Carper & Attridge: Meter and Meaning: An Introduction to Rhythm in Poetry

Other Readings and Media

Course Reader

Description

In addition to reading and writing poems, we'll also: study prosody via weekly scanning assignments; read critical essays on poetics; historicize formal conventions and talk about genre; create; destroy; rebuild; delight. I'm hoping that by the end of the semester you'll have improved your ability to read sound in a wide range of poetries, which will make you a better writer.

Only continuing 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 in 11 PM, THURSDAY APRIL 26.

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: O'Brien, Geoffrey G.
Time: Tues. 3:30-6:30
Location: 78 Barrows


Description

The purpose of this class will be to produce a collective language in which to treat poetry. Writing your own poems will be a part of this task, but it will also require readings in contemporary poetry and essays in poetics, as well as some writing assignments done under extreme formal constraints. In addition, there’ll be regular commentary on other students’ work.

All readings will be drawn from a course reader.

Only continuing 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 11 PM, THURSDAY, APRIL 26.

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: Culture Writing and Life Writing

English 143N

Section: 1
Instructor: Saul, Scott
Time: MW 3-4:30
Location: note new location: 305 Wheeler


Other Readings and Media

There will be a required course reader.

Description

This course is a nonfiction workshop in which you'll learn to write about many different types of art and culture, from TV and film to music and other forms of performance, while developing your own voice as a writer and reflecting on what has shaped your own sensibility. For examples of the wide variety of student writing produced in earlier versions of the course, visit "The Annex" at www.medium.com/the-annex.

Our semester will be guided by a few basic questions: What can we demand from culture, and how are we transformed by it? What does it mean to love or hate a song, TV show, or work of art? How are we shaped by our encounters with specific works of art? And how do our arguments about a particular piece of "culture" connect to broader dreams about politics, freedom, community, and our sense of the possible?

On several occasions, we will be honored to host a visit with an esteemed writer, whose work will be featured in the class. Previous visitors have included the New Yorker's Hua Hsu, The Week's Lili Loofbourow, and Macarthur 'genius grant' winner Josh Kun.

Only continuing 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 11 PM, THURSDAY, APRIL 26.

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: The Personal Essay

English 143N

Section: 2
Instructor: Kleege, Georgina
Time: TTh 12:30-2
Location: 107 Mulford


Book List

Jamison, L. ed. : The Best American Essays 2017

Description

This class will be conducted as a writing workshop to explore the art and craft of the personal essay.  We will closely examine the essays in the assigned anthology, as well as students’ exercises and essays.  Writing assignments will include three short writing exercises (2 pages each) and two new essays (10-20 pages each). 

Only continuing 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 11 PM, THURSDAY, APRIL 26.  

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 2-3:30
Location: 223 Dwinelle


Description

This course will interrogate the way in which “free” speech 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 literature; on a legal or psychoanalytic “case”; on literary form.

Texts will include: Norton Anthology of Literary Theory; Butler, J.: Excitable Speech; Foucault, M.: Fearless Speech; Freud, S.: Dora;  Melville, H.: Shorter Works; Plato: The Republic; Sophocles: Antigone; Wordsworth and Coleridge: Lyrical Ballads.

The English Department is working on expanding the class size for this offering. If you would like to enroll in this course after it fills, please put yourself on the wait list and if we are able to accommodate you, you will be added as soon as possible (no later than the first week of classes). 


Special Topics: Oscar Wilde and the Nineteenth Century

English 165

Section: 1
Instructor: Lavery, Grace
Time: MW 3-4:30
Location: note new location: 301 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 identity? 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.


Special Topics: The English Department

English 165

Section: 2
Instructor: Marno, David
Time: MW 5-6:30
Location: 106 Dwinelle


Description

The English Department is one of the most curious developments in the history of human civilization. What do we study? The answer used to be, “literary texts of the English canon.” But then we questioned what belonged to the canon, what constituted a literary text, whether its segregation from non-literary texts was defensible, and eventually whether we should restrain ourselves to the study of texts at all.

At times we have claimed that what holds together students of English is not what we study but how we do so. But what exactly are the skills of an English major? Other literature departments require the knowledge of at least one foreign language; most English majors read texts in their first language. There are some “methods” that we supposedly share, such as “close reading” or “critical thinking.” But aside from the difficulty of explaining why we should have exclusive claims to either of these skills, we have also called them into doubt by exposing their historical particularities, epistemological biases, and political inefficiencies.

This constant self-questioning of the subjects and methods is not an incidental feature of the study of English but the logical consequence of the utopian ideal behind it: namely, to create a completely democratic discipline. This ideal is inherently paradoxical: it seeks to establish an academic discipline, that is, a branch of knowledge separate from all other branches of knowledge; and yet it seeks to leave or actively make this knowledge accessible to all. Why do we want such a discipline, and what are the consequences of wanting it?

In this course, we will be looking at the Department of English as a social and intellectual experiment with a fascinating past, a challenging present, and a doubtful future. What were the original motivations behind its establishment? What are the driving forces that continue to maintain it today? What are the particular challenges facing the English Department and its students today? And finally, if there’s a future for this field, what does it look like?

Readings include chapters from the history of literary criticism from Plato to Donna Haraway; accounts of the modern university from Wilhelm Humboldt to John Guillory; and theories of education and its politics from Thomas More to Simone Weil and Hannah Arendt. All readings will be posted on bCourses.


Special Topics: Literature and Media Theory

English 165

Section: 3
Instructor: Langan, Celeste
Time: TTh 9:30-11
Location: note new location: 225 Dwinelle


Description

This course will consider literature in relation to media theory.  Is literature made obsolete by new media?  What happens when we consider print literature in relation to other “distressed” media, from black-and-white photography to silent film to analog recording?  What happens to the concept of authenticity in the digital age? How does print differ from “code” as a “general medium” of sensory forms—sight, sound, touch? What do we value about “virtual” reality? Using Marshall McLuhan’s claim that “the content of one medium is always another medium” as a guiding concept, we will try to assess the impact of other media, especially photography, film, and recorded sound, on literature’s function and value.  Our particular interest will be in the status of the “document”—an historical or fictional piece of evidence that is somehow presented, represented, or mediated by the art form (or “platform”) in question.  We’ll compare  “documents” (including reported and recorded speech) as they are mediated in both 19th- and late 20th-century literary forms.  One question that may emerge, as we consider the history of mediation from Dracula to Danielewski’s House of Leaves, is why mediation is so often registered an occult or gothic phenomenon.  Students will be responsible for weekly discussion posts on the reading and two critical projects (one of which needs to be in print form!).

Texts will include:  Beckett, S.: Krapp's Last Tape; Danielewski, M., House of Leaves; Johnson, R.: RADI OS; Mann, E., Four Plays; Stoker, B.: Dracula; Williams, W.C.: Paterson; Wordsworth and Coleridge, Lyrical Ballads. Secondary reading: Bolter and Grusin: Remediations; Hansen, M., ed., Critical Terms for Media Studies Kittler, F.: Gramophone Film Typewriter; McLuhan, M.: Understanding Media: The Extensions of Man.


Special Topics: The Ecology of Utopia

English 165

Section: 4
Instructor: Goldstein, Amanda Jo
Time: TTh 2-3:30
Location: 174 Barrows


Description

Since long before Thomas More coined the catching term “Utopia” – meaning “no place” or “not-place” – to name his fiction of a perfect island commonwealth, the literature of non-existent worlds has been calling every aspect of actually existing societies into question. This course seeks to investigate the rival ways of thinking about “nature” – human and otherwise – that support utopian visions of political community and to explore the longstanding link between utopian fiction and ecological perspectives on this earth.

The course will usually be run as a seminar. Readings will allow us to explore utopian literature's intersections with science fiction, pastoral, satire and the literature of exploration, and are likely to include: Theocritus, Virgil, Thomas More, Gerrard Winstanley, Margaret Cavendish, Edward Bellamy, William Morris, Henri David Thoreau, Charlotte Perkins Gilman, Karl Marx, Hannah Arendt, Aldous Huxley, Rachel Carson, Margaret Atwood, Ernest Callenbach, Ursula K. LeGuin, Octavia Butler.

 


Special Topics: Reading Walden With Care

English 165

Section: 5
Instructor: Breitwieser, Mitchell
Time: TTh 3:30-5
Location: 238 Kroeber


Description

Assigned text: Henry David Thoreau, Walden, Civil Disobedience and Other Writings (Norton Critical Editions). You are required to use this edition.

We will read Walden twice, in order to gain a deeper understanding of this rich and frustrating book. The number of pages assigned each week will be considerably less than in most English classes, but you will need to read slowly and deliberately, so roughly the same amount of out-of-class prep time will be needed. Class meetings will vary between occasional lectuers, full group discussion, and small group discussion. You will be writing two essays.


Special Topics: Hardly Strictly Lyric Poems

English 165

Section: 6
Instructor: Hanson, Kristin
Time: TTh 3:30-5
Location: 106 Wheeler


Other Readings and Media

Our primary texts will be CDs of The Flatlanders, Butch Hancock, Joe Ely, Jimmie Dale Gilmore, Townes van Zandt, Guy Clark and others.  

A few brief secondary readings wlll be available as a course reader.  

Description

Historically and etymologically, lyric poetry was sung to the accompaniment of a lyre.  Most lyric poetry studied as English literature today, however, reflecting the term "literature"'s own history and etymology, is related to the genre in ways other than by being sung.  The aim of this course is to study some lyric poetry in its traditional form of song. 

We will focus, however, not on the old lyric poetry that gave the genre its name, but on contemporary lyrics in a flourishing tradition whose live performances we have opportunities to hear locally:  songs of a set of (mostly West) Texans who perform regularly at the Hardly Strictly Bluegrass music festival held in Golden Gate Park in October, as well as songs that influenced them.  We will consider the songs' lyrics' poetic forms, including their use of rhyme, alliteration, meter and syntactic parallelism; their imagery; differences between lyric and narrative songs; their cultural origins, including their bluegrass, blues and tejana influences; and some differences between sung and unsung poetry.  

The course will include attendance at the Hardly Strictly Bluegrass festival and possibly other outings as well.


Special Topics: Utopian and (mostly) Dystopian Movies

English 165

Section: 7
Instructor: Starr, George A.
Time: Tues. 5-8:30 (incl. 1/2-hr. break)
Location: 300 Wheeler


Description

Most utopian and dystopian authors are more concerned with persuading readers of the merits of their ideas than with the "merely" literary qualities of their writing. Although utopian writing has sometimes made converts, inspiring readers to try to realize the ideal society, most of it has had limited practical impact, yet has managed to provoke readers in various ways—for instance, as a kind of imaginative fiction that comments on "things as they are" indirectly yet effectively, with fantasy and satire in varying doses. Among the critical questions posed by such material are the problematic status of fiction that is not primarily mimetic, but written in the service of some ulterior purpose; the shifting relationships between what is and what authors think might be or ought to be; how to create the new and strange other than by recombining the old and familiar; and so on.

Various films (such as Metropolis, Triumph of the Will, Modern Times, 1984, Handmaid's Tale, Brazil, THX1138, Gattaca, A Clockwork Orange, and  Children of Men) will be included in the syllabus and discussed in class. The works on the book list are not required, but recommended: in some cases, as classics of their genre, in others, for purposes of comparison with film adaptations. Writing will consist of one long essay of 16-20 pages. There will be no quizzes or exams, but seminar attendance and participation will be expected, and will affect grades.

Book List

Recommended: Zamiatin, E: We; Atwood, M : The Handmaid's Tale; Burgess, A: A Clockwork Orange; Gilman, C. P.: Herland; Huxley, A: Brave New World; Ishiguro, K: Never Let Me Go; Orwell, G: 1984; Wells, H. G.: Three Prophetic Novels


Special Topics: Alfred Hitchcock

English 166

Section: 2
Instructor: Bader, Julia
Time: Mon. 4:30-9:00 (incl. half-hour break)
Location: 300 Wheeler


Book List

Deutelbaum, M.: A Hitchcock Reader; Modleski, T.: The Women Who Knew Too Much

Description

This course will focus on the Hitchcock oeuvre from the early British through the American period, with emphasis on analysis of cinematic representation of crime, victimhood, and the investigation of guilt. Our discussions and critical readings will consider socio-cultural backgrounds, gender problems, and psychological and Marxist readings as well as star studies.

The English Department is working on expanding the class size for this offering. If you would like to enroll in this course after it fills, please put yourself on the wait list and if we are able to accommodate you, you will be added as soon as possible (no later than the first week of classes). 


Special Topics: Journeys: British World-Building, c. 700-1700

English 166

Section: 3
Instructor: Miller, Jasmin
Time: TTh 11-12:30
Location: 211 Dwinelle


Other Readings and Media

Required Texts:

Aeneid, selection (trans. Fagles, Penguin Classics Deluxe)

Bede, The Ecclesiastical History of the English Nation, selection (trans. Sherley-Price, Penguin Classics)

Beowulf (trans. Heaney, Norton)

St. Patrick's Purgatory (Gardiner, Visions of Heaven & Hell Before Dante)

Sir Orfeo (Treharne, Old and Middle English, c. 890-c. 1450)

Mandeville's Travels (trans. Bale, The Book of Marvels and Travels)

Margery Kempe, The Book of Margery Kempe (trans. Windeatt, Penguin Classics)

John MIlton, Paradise Lost (Teskey, Norton Critical Edition)

Description

"Britain, formerly known as Albion, is an island in the ocean, lying towards the north west at a considerable distance from the coasts of Germany, Gaul, and Spain, which together form the greater part of Europe." (Bede, Ecclesiastical History of the English People, trans. Leo Sherley-Price)

                                         "The mind is its own place, and in it self

                                       Can make a Heav'n of Hell, a Hell of Heav'n."

                                            (John MIlton, Paradise Lost, 1.255-56)

This is a seminar that explores the various perspectives that writers of medieval and early modern texts use to map the world around them. As we will see, the world looks very different depending on who is telling the story, so class discussion will inevitably draw on textual criticism and historical context to supplement our conversations about how each text builds its own world. Over the course of the semester, we will also keep track of our own map of the medieval/early modern world to see where worlds collide or remain distinct.

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


Special Topics: "this morning's minion": Sonic Mysticism in Gerard Manley Hopkins and Emily Dickinson

English 166

Section: 4
Instructor: Stancek, Claire Marie
Time: TTh 3:30-5
Location: 225 Dwinelle


Book List

Cavarero, Ariana: For More than One Voice: Toward a Philosophy of Vocal Expression (2005); Chion, Michel: Sound: An Acoulogical Treatise (2016); Dickinson, Emily: The Complete Poems of Emily Dickinson; Hopkins, Gerard Manley: The Major Works; Rose, Trishia: Black Noise: Rap Music and Black Culture in Contemporary America (1994); Stoever, Jennifer Lynn : The Sonic Color Line: Race and the Cultural Politics of Listening (2016)

Other Readings and Media

Course reader with selections from Boethius, François Rabelais, and architectural theory

Description

"...it is said that light is a sound too high-pitched for the human ear to hear but that one day it will become accessible to another ear awakened in another life and that, indeed, we will be able to hear the music of the spheres, like the movement of love that, in Dante's words, 'moves the sun and the other stars.'"        

                           —Sound: An Acoulogical Treatise, Michel Chion

In François Rabelais's The Life of Gargantua and Pantagruel, there is a famous scene in which sounds from an ancient battle, previously frozen in the air, become unthawed, emitting the clash of weapons, the boom of drums, and the cries of unrecognizable languages. Although this scene has often been read as an anticipation of recording technology, it is also an example of a legend that thematizes sound's mystical, world-making, time-travelling capacity. In this class, we will begin by studying a range of such legends and their cultural applications, from the music of the spheres, to the architectural theory of churches, to the convention of the sample in contemporary music. How is sound peculiarly invested with the power to maintain the possibility of simultaneous worlds? How can we train our ears to hear these unheard realities? Much of this investigation will proceed by following an in-depth reading of the works of Gerard Manley Hopkins and Emily Dickinson, two authors who, in different ways and on opposite sides of the Atlantic, confounded the difference between mystical beliefs and sonic theory We will bring a range of methodological approaches to bear on these two authors, from prosody and meter, to lyric theory, to performance. We will read their poetry and prose, Hopkins's journals, Dickinson's fragments, as well as the letters of both authors. In applying broader questions about sonic mysticism to these texts, we will consider more particular problems as well; for example, how does Hopkins's theory of Reversed Feet and Reversed or Counterpoint Rhythm transpose the music of the spheres? How does Dickinson develop conceptual correspondences by rhyming at long distance? In addition to a research paper, students will write a creative project that develops a mystical sonic theory of their own.


Special Topics

English 166

Section: 5
Instructor: Le, Serena
Time: TTh 9:30-11
Location: 211 Dwinelle


Description

This section of English 166 has been canceled (7/5/18).


Special Topics in American Cultures: Race & Revision in Early America

English 166AC

Section: 1
Instructor: Donegan, Kathleen
Time: Lectures MW 1-2 + one hour of discussion section per week (sec. 101: F 10-11; sec. 102: F 1-2; sec. 103: Thurs. 10-11; sec. 104: Thurs. 1-2; sec. 105: Thurs. 1-2; sec. 106: Thurs. 4-5)
Location: Lectures: note new location: 159 Mulford; disc. secs. in different locations


Book List

Brown, W. W. : Clotel, or the President's Daughter; Cesaire, A. : A Tempest; Conde, M. : I, Titua, Black Witch of Salem; Jefferson, T.: Notes on the State of Virginia; Morrison, T. : A Mercy; Shakespeare, W. : The Tempest

Description

In this course, we will read both historical and literary texts to explore how racial categories came into being in New World cultures, and how these categories were tested, inhabited, and re-imagined by the human actors they sought to define.  Our study will be organized around four early American sites:  Landfall in the North Atlantic, Pocahontas at Jamestown, Witchcraft at Salem, and Jefferson’s Virginia. In each of these places Native, European, and African ways of making meaning collided, and concepts of racial difference were formed. These four sites will function as interpretive nodes.  For each, we will read a selection of primary documents, and then explore how racial constructions forged at each site have been re-imagined and revised throughout American cultural history.

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

This course satisfies UC Berkeley's American Cultures requirement.


Literature and Psychology: Literatures of the Self

English 172

Section: 1
Instructor: Zeavin, Hannah
Time: TTh 11-12:30
Location: 300 Wheeler


Book List

Bechdel, Alison: Fun Home: A Family Tragicomedy; Hejinian, Lyn: My Life

Other Readings and Media

All other readings will be in a course reader.

Description

In this course, we will survey literatures of the self and their history from antiquity to the present. We will attend to the writing of the self in its many genres and forms: the diary, the autobiography, the poem, the novel, the memoir, the case study, the graphic novel, and digital self-presentation. Auto-writings negotiate a paradox: a subjective engagement with subjective fact that often aspires to a nearly scientific objectivity; sometimes they task themselves with the opposite: undoing or revising a scientific or political consensus. We will think about these literatures as means of self-preservation, self-knowing, self-tracking, diagnosis, an accounting for a self, as a site of counter-history, and as a tool for (re)enfranchisement. Authors include Augustine, Kempe, Pepys, Rousseau, Whitman, Douglass, Freud, Stein, Woolf, Hejinian, Anzaldúa, Bechdel, and Nelson.


The Language and Literature of Films: The Film Essay: James Baldwin, Roland Barthes, Susan Sontag

English 173

Section: 1
Instructor: Best, Stephen M.
Young, Damon
Time: Lectures TTh 3:30-5 + film screenings Thurs. 5-8
Location: 142 Dwinelle


Book List

Baldwin, James: The Devil Finds Work; Baldwin, James: The Fire Next Time; Barthes, Roland: Camera Lucida; Barthes, Roland: Mythologies; Sontag, Susan: Against Interpretation

Description

This course offers an in-depth study of three of the most influential public intellectuals of the twentieth century: James Baldwin, Roland Barthes, and Susan Sontag. Working in the postwar period between France and the United States, and grappling in different ways with their own minority experience, each of these writers was passionately engaged with the cinema, which provided the occasion for some of their most provocative reflections on race, sex, art, and culture. As well as offering brilliant insights into cinema as art form and medium, their writing provides a map of the intellectual, political, and cultural history of the past fifty years, posing questions that are more relevant than ever today. We will analyze the way these (and some other) authors make their arguments, how they think and write about film and art, and, especially, how they bring to light the relation between film aesthetics and the politics of race, class, gender, sexuality, and national identity. We will follow their lead in watching and responding to provocative films that challenge our taken-for-granted assumptions. We will also approach the essay as an art in its own right, exploring how great cultural criticism not only comments on but also creates the world. Students will work through a series of writing exercises to produce innovative cultural criticism of their own, or a longer research paper

This class is cross-listed with Film 140, and it will be co-taught by Prof. Stephen Best and Prof. Damon Young.


Literature and History: Culture in the Age of Obama

English 174

Section: 1
Instructor: Saul, Scott
Time: MWF 12-1
Location: 2011 Valley LSB


Description

This seminar explores the forms of culture that emerged, or experienced a renaissance, during the presidency of Barack Obama. Starting with Obama's own bildungsroman-like Dreams from My Father, we will then explore such forms as the theatrical remix (Hamilton: The Musical; CalShakes' Black Odyssey, which we will attend); the neo-slave narrative (Colson Whitehead's The Underground Railroad; Paul Beatty's The Sell Out); the family novel (Jessmyn Ward's Salvage the Bones; Angela Flournoy's The Turner House); the race-driven horror tale (Get Out; Victor LaValle's The Ballad of Black Tom); the lyrical tale of personal awakening (Moonlight, adapted from Tarrell Alvin McRaney's play In Moonlight Black Boys Look Blue); and the innovative remix of musical genres, like hip-hop, jazz, and neo-soul, often coded as 'black' (Solange's A Seat at the Table; D'Angelo's Black Messiah; Kendrick Lamar's To Pimp a Butterfly).


Literature and Disability

English 175

Section: 1
Instructor: Kleege, Georgina
Time: TTh 3:30-5
Location: note new location: 204 Wheeler


Book List

Finger, A.: Call Me Ahab; Friel, B. : Molly Sweeney; Lewis, V.A. ed.: Beyond Victims and Villains; Nussbaum, S.: Good Kings, Bad Kings; Shakespeare, W.: Richard III; Unwin, S. : All Our Children

Description

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

(This is a core course for the Disability Studies Minor).


Autobiography: Chicanx Autobiographies

English 180A

Section: 1
Instructor: Gonzalez, Marcial
Time: TTh 11-12:30
Location: note new location: 242 Dwinelle


Book List

Acosta, Oscar Zeta: The Autobiography of a Brown Buffalo; Cantu, Norma: Canicula: Snapshots of a Girlhood en la frontera; Castillo, Ana: Black Dove; Castillo-Guilbault, Rose: Farmworker's Daughter; Gonzalez, Rigoberto: Butterfly Boy: Memories of a Chicano Mariposa; Ruiz, Ronald: The Lawyer; Trevino Hart, Elva: Barefoot Heart: Stories of a Migrant Child; Urrea, Luis Alberto: The Devil's Highway

Description

The autobiography is a problematic narrative form. In telling their stories, Chicanx autobiographers reconstruct the past partly by relying on unreliable memory, creating the illusion of historical accuracy through the imagination. Chicanx autobiographers, however, do not create this illusion cynically; their stories emerge from the need to offer an alternative to hegemonic biographical narratives that promise transparent representation but exclude or misrepresent Chicanx history and subjectivity. Thus, to a large degree, Chicanx autobiographies disrupt the claims of conventional self-referential narratives as we have understood them. And yet, they are nevertheless able to convey some truths about history and personal experience, if not through their surface narratives then through the tensions and contradictions that take shape in the construction of the narrative itself—or one might say, at the level of form. To supplement our study of Chicanx autobiographies, we’ll read short works of history and literary criticism. We’ll also make an effort to understand the similarities and differences between autobiography and other narrative forms, such as the novel.

The English Department is working on expanding the class size for this offering. If you would like to enroll in this course after it fills, please put yourself on the wait list and if we are able to accommodate you, you will be added as soon as possible (no later than the first week of classes). 


The Epic

English 180E

Section: 1
Instructor: Nolan, Maura
Time: TTh 12:30-2
Location: 170 Barrows


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. We 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 Short Story

English 180H

Section: 1
Instructor: Chandra, Vikram
Time: MWF 10-11
Location: 102 Wheeler


Other Readings and Media

A course reader, which will be available from Instant Copying & Laser Printing ((510) 704-9700; 2138 University Ave, Berkeley, CA 94704).

Description

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

                                                                  -- Chaucer

This course will investigate how authors craft stories, so that both non-writers and writers may gain a new perspective on reading stories.  In thinking of short stories as artefacts produced by humans, we will consider – without any assertions of certainty – how those people may have experienced themselves and their world, and how history and culture may have participated in the making of these stories.  So, in this course we will explore the making, purposes, and pleasures of the short story form.  We will read – widely, actively and carefully – many published stories from various countries in order to begin to understand the conventions of the form, and how this form may function in diverse cultures.  Students will write a short story and revise it; engaging with a short story as a writer will aid them in their investigations as readers and critics. Students will also write two analytical papers about stories we read in class.

Attendance is mandatory.


Research Seminar: Melville in the 50s

English 190

Section: 1
Instructor: Goldsmith, Steven
Time: MW 9-10:30
Location: 305 Wheeler


Book List

James, C. L. R.: Mariners, Renegades & Castaways: The Story of Herman Melville and the World We Live In; Levine, R.: The New Cambridge Companion to Herman Melville; Melville, H.: Moby-Dick; Melville, H.: The Piazza Tales and Other Prose Pieces, 1839-1860; Melville, H.: White Jacket; Melville, H. : Pierre, or the Ambiguities; Otter, S.: Melville's Anatomies

Description

In this seminar we will read as much of Herman Melville’s fiction from the 1850s as we can, delving patiently into Moby-Dick (1851) early in the semester and then tracking the experiments in prose that eventually led Melville to the corrosive skepticism of The Confidence Man (1857) and to abandon fiction altogether thereafter.  If time permits, we will also consider Melville in the 1950s.  That is, we will examine how Cold War political debates influenced mid-century Melville criticism, paying special attention to C. L. R. James, a Caribbean intellectual who wrote his study of Moby-Dick while under detention on Ellis Island for “passport violations” in 1952.  Students will write a short initial essay on Moby-Dick and a research paper on a topic of their choice.

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: Laughter and Vision: Explorations in the Novel of Ideas

English 190

Section: 2
Instructor: Danner, Mark
Time: Note new time: Tuesdays 2-5
Location: Note new location: 300 Wheeler


Description

In this seminar we will trod fiction's "path not taken"—the tradition of the novel of ideas that, with the triumph of Realism in the nineteenth century of Dickens and Balzac, became mainstream fiction's dark shadow. Our exploration will stretch from Rabelais, in the sixteenth century, to Thomas Mann, Walker Percy and Iris Murdoch in the twentieth, with stops in between for Laurence Sterne, Voltaire, Denis Diderot, Herman Melville and John Cowper Powys. Throughout we will focus on what this tradition can tell us about what the novel is, what it became—and what it can be.

Please read the paragraph about English 190 on page 2 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: Representations of Coercion and Resistance in African American Slave, Jim Crow, and Neo-slave Narratives

English 190

Section: 3
Instructor: JanMohamed, Abdul R.
Time: MW 5-6:30
Location: 122 Wheeler


Description

Within the context of slavery, the Jim Crow version of slavery, and the continuing racism in the U.S., African American literature bears witness to centuries of oppression, coercion, and exploitation; at the same time it documents great tenacity and resistance and the capacity to overcome these forms of subjugation. This course will examine the relation between the socio-political structures of historical domination and the literary manifestations of the effects of oppression and modes of resistance. Along with historical texts, we will read literary texts ranging from Jacobs' and Douglass' autobiographies to novels by Toni Morrison, Alice Walker, and Jesmyn Ward. The course will focus primarliy on forms of resistance and overcoming. Course requirements: one oral report and one 18-20 page research paper.

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: William Blake

English 190

Section: 4
Instructor: Goldstein, Amanda Jo
Time: TTh 9:30-11
Location: note new location: 6 Evans


Description

In this seminar, we will read our way slowly into William Blake's forbidding and exciting “fourfold” poetic environments: graphic works of “Illuminated Printing” in which a city like London, or “Golgonooza,” is also a level of consciousness, a bodily organ, a phase of fallen history, and grotesque fun with g’s and o’s. With the aid of intertexts ranging from the Book of Revelations to Romantic political philosophy and contemporary literary theory, we will trace Blake’s mythic characters’ attempts to form artistic, erotic, and political community while enmeshed in what the poet called “the Web of Urizen”: the internalized system of moral “virtues” that shored up the national defense, wage-labor exploitation, and colonial slavery in Blake’s era of revolution and reaction.

A focus on Blake opens onto broader problems that animate Romantic-era artworks: the relation between aesthetics and politics, nature and technology, personal and national history, innovation and inherited form. Readings will include Mary Wollstonecraft, Thomas Paine, Edmund Burke, Walter Benjamin, Michel Foucault, Northrop Frye, and W.J.T. Mitchell and a sprinkling of latterday Blakean poets.

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: 7
Instructor: Ellis, Nadia
Time: TTh 12:30-2
Location: 211 Dwinelle


Book List

Adichie, Chimamanda: Americanah; Cole, Teju: Open City; Dreiser, Theodor: Sister Carrie; Lovelace, Earl: The Dragon Can't Dance; Mpe, Phaswane: Welcome to Our Hillbrow; Reed, Ishmael: Blues City; Selvon, Sam: The Lonely Londoners; Smith, Zadie: NW; Vlasidavic, Ivan: Portrait With Keys; Woolf, Virginia: Mrs. Dalloway

Other Readings and Media

The texts for this class will be available at University Press Books, Bancroft Ave.

Films: La Noire de... dir. Sembene (1966); Fruitvale Station dir. Coogler (2013); Black Panther dir. Coogler (2018)

Description

An intensive research seminar exploring the relationship between urban landscapes and postcolonial literary cultures. Readings in theories of postcoloniality and diaspora as well as studies in city planning and architecture will accompany close examination of novels, films, and music. Weekly written responses and a long final research paper will be required.

Please contact instructor before purchasing texts.

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: Repression and Resistance

English 190

Section: 8
Instructor: Gonzalez, Marcial
Time: TTh 2-3:30
Location: 122 Wheeler


Book List

Allison, Dorothy: Bastard Out of Carolina; Jones, Gayl: Corregidora; Nguyen, Viet Thanh: The Sympathizer; Ozick, Cynthia: The Shawl; Ruiz, Ronald: Happy Birthday Jesus; Trumbo, Dalton: Johnny Got His Gun; Wideman, John Edgar: Philadelphia Fire

Description

In this course, we’ll analyze representations of repression and resistance in a collection of contemporary American novels. We’ll examine various forms of repression—physical, social, political, and psychological—represented in these works, and we’ll study the various ways the novels resist repression. (Please be forewarned: some of these works include graphic and disturbing representations of violence and abuse.) Several questions inform the course theme: What are the formal features of the literature of repression and resistance? How is it that literature can convert forms of repression into aesthetically pleasing representations? Can pain and suffering be symbolized, stylized, or transfigured into an aesthetic form and still retain its representational-historical value? At what point does an event become so horrific that it can no longer be represented aesthetically? Where is the line drawn? We’ll make use of a comparative approach to analyze the similarities and differences between the various novels, and we’ll strive for a critical appreciation of both the social significance and the aesthetic quality of the literature. Students will be required to write a research paper and give an oral presentation.

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: Mark Twain

English 190

Section: 9
Instructor: Griffin, Ben
Time: TTh 2-3:30
Location: note new location: 479 Bancroft Library


Description

This course is designed as an investigation of Mark Twain's writings, and a chance to develop skills essential to research.  Classes will be held in the Bancroft Library, making use of the unique collections of the Mark Twain Papers—the world's largest collection of Samuel L. Clemens's manuscripts, letters, and early editions.  Students will decipher manuscripts, compare printed editions, and edit short works, learning how scholar-editors sift evidence, generate historical understanding, prsent relevant data, and create new approaches to old material.  These skills are no sideline: in today's world, many things which appear obvious (on page or onscreen) are not so.  How to cope?  "Editing" can mean a textual investigation aimed at producing a usable, soundly constructed (yet always provisional) text.  The habits that go into editing are part of our effort to test what we've received; they apply not only to books but to anybody's "version of" anything.

We will begin with lesser-known Mark Twain: the early, tough-minded comic journalism written from San Francisco.  These texts bring up problems of attribution, transmission, and editing without an authorial manuscript.  Then we will read Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, Mark Twain's first (and last?) great masterpiece.  Huck Finn offers many chances to ask what authorial intention is, and how far it can legitimately be exerted.  "The Private History of a Campaign that Failed" is Mark Twain's rather strategic "apology" for his Civil War history; it can usefully be read in tandem with A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court.  Pudd'nhead Wilson follows: a Mark Twain course would be incomplete without this nightmarish melodrama of America's racist history.  We should also read parts of Twain's Autobiography, the complete text of which has only just been published and which, being a dictated text, poses special editorial problems.  So does No. 44The Mysterious Stranger, a story of devils and humans which Twain never finished to his satisfaction.

Students will be assigned textual-critical and literary experiments (papers).  These may range over Mark Twain's works and letters or veer off into other areas of interest.  They should focus our attention on how reading matter—and much else besides—is constructed for us on the basis of theories, discoveries, and assumptions.  A final project will be chosen by the student and presented to the class.

Reading List: 

-- One course reader made up by the instructor, consisting of early MT journalism, etc.

--"The Recent Carnival of Crime in Connecticut" (in Course Reader)

--Adventures of Huckleberry Finn (UC Press edition, 2001)

--"The Private History of a Campaign That Failed" (1885) (in Course Reader)

-- Pudd'nhead Wilson (Norton Critical Edition, 2015)

--Autobiography (UC Press edition), selections (in Course Reader)

-- No. 44, The Mysterious Stranger (UC Press edition, 2004)

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

English 190

Section: 10
Instructor: No instructor assigned yet.
Time:
Location:


Description

This section of English 190 has been canceled.

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


Research Seminar

English 190

Section: 11
Instructor: No instructor assigned yet.
Time:
Location:


Description

This section of English 190 has been canceled.

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


Research Seminar: California Books and Movies Since World War I

English 190

Section: 12
Instructor: Starr, George A.
Time: Thurs. 5-8:30 (incl. 1/2-hr. break)
Location: 300 Wheeler


Description

Besides reading and discussing some fiction and poetry with Western settings, and essays that attempt to identify or explain distinctive regional characteristics, this course will consider various movies shaped by and shaping conceptions of California, such as E. v. Stroheim's Greed, J. Ford's Grapes of Wrath, N. Ray's In A Lonely Place, B. Wilder's Sunset Boulevard, R. Polanski's Chinatown, the Coen brothers' Man Who Wasn't There, T. Haynes's Safe, P. Anderson's There Will Be Blood, &c.  Writing will consist of one long essay of 16-20 pages. There will be no quizzes or exams, but seminar attendance and participation will be expected, and will affect grades.

Readings will include Chandler, R.: The Big Sleep; Didion, J.: Slouching Toward Bethlehem; Steinbeck, J.: The Long Valley; Steinbeck, J.: The Pastures of Heaven; West, N.: The Day of the Locust.

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 Jamesian Novel

English 190

Section: 13
Instructor: Hale, Dorothy J.
Time: MW 10:30-12
Location: 301 Wheeler


Description

This seminar seeks to introduce students to the pleasure of Jamesian difficulty. We will undertake an intensive reading of James's fiction, playing close attention to the extended figuration and syntax that is the signature of Jamesian style. Topics of discussion include: James's notion of novelistic aesthetics; his investment in point of view; his engagement with a variety of narrative modes (the novel of manners; the gothic; psychological realism); his investigation into morality and ethics; his inquiry into the problem of knowledge; his cultivation of narrative ambiguity; his representation of queer identity; and the values that led other fiction writers and literary critics to forward his reputation as "the master" of the art of the novel. The course will begin with short stories by Nathaniel Hawthorne and George Eliot, wrtiers to whom James paid homage and whose influence is strongly registered in James's fiction. Novels by Edith Wharton and Virginia Woolf will allow us to appreciate the immediate impact that James's work had on the modern novel.

For the 15-20 page critical essay due at the end of the term, students may write on any aspect of James's significance as a literary and cultural figure. A prospectus, bibliography and full rough draft of the essay will be required steps of the writing process. Each student will also be responsible for one oral presentation on the assigned reading. There is no midterm or final exam.

Fiction by James includes short stories as well as Washington SquareThe Turn of the ScrewThe Portrait of a Lady; and The Ambassadors. Also required: The Age of Innocence, Wharton; To the Lighthouse, Woolf. A course reader will be available through Copy Central.

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

English 190

Section: 14
Instructor: Miller, Jennifer
Time: MW 5-6:30
Location: 233 Dwinelle


Other Readings and Media

A course reader.

Description

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

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

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 H195A

Section: 1
Instructor: Sorensen, Janet
Time: MW 1:30-3
Location: 305 Wheeler


Other Readings and Media

See below.

Description

In the first semester of this two-semester-long course, we will familiarize ourselves with a number of critical approaches to literary study and reflect a bit on the institution of criticism itself. These discussions will provide a background from which to identify the critical methods and stakes of our own individual projects, culminating in a 40+ page paper due at the end of the two semesters. We will read selections from a collection of critical essays, and we will read one work together—likely Jane Austen's Emma—and review a variety of critical approaches to it. Students will prepare a précis or two of critical works, collectively identify and prepare presentations on additional critics they would like to read, develop a thesis for their own writing project on a work (or works) of their choice, and produce an annotated bibliography on relevant materials for their project.

Students who satisfactorily complete H195A-B (the Honors Course) will satisfy the Research Seminar requirement for the English major. (More details about H195A prerequisites, how and when students will be informed of the results of their applications, etc., are in the paragraph about the Honors Course on page 2 of the instructions area of this Announcement of Classes.)

To be considered for admission to this course, you will need to electronically apply by:

• Clicking on the link below and filling out the application you will find there, bearing in mind that you will also need to attach:

• a PDF of your Academic Summary (go into Cal Central, click your "My Academics" tab, then click "View Academic Summary" and "Print as PDF"),

• a PDF of your non-UC Berkeley transcript(s), if any,

• a PDF (or Word document) of a critical paper that you wrote for another class (the length of this paper not being as important as its quality), and

• a PDF (or Word document) of a personal statement, including why you are interested in taking this course and indicating your academic interest and, if possible, the topic or area you are thinking of addressing in your honors thesis.

The deadline for completing this application is 11 PM, FRIDAY, MAY 11.


Honors Course

English H195A

Section: 2
Instructor: Abel, Elizabeth
Time: TTh 12:30-2
Location: 174 Barrows


Book List

Booth, Wayne C.: The Craft of Research; Eagleton, Terry: Literary Theory: An Introduction; Shakespeare, William: The Tempest; Woolf, Virginia: Mrs. Dalloway;

Recommended: MLA Handbook for Writers of Research Papers (7th edition)

Other Readings and Media

A course reader of critical essays, poetry, and short fiction will be available on bCourses.

Description

H195A/B is a two-semester seminar that lays the groundwork for and guides you through the completion a 40-60 page Honors thesis on a subject of your choice. The first semester offers an inquiry into critical approaches, research methods, and theoretical frameworks. We will engage with some of the key theoretical movements and debates of the twentieth century (e.g., New Criticism, post-structuralism, psychoanalysis, materialism(s), feminism, postcolonial and critical race theory, affect theory). We will ground our collective inquiry in readings of a few primary texts that highlight the questions posed by specific genres (fiction, poetry, drama). The goal is to help you to define a compelling research project that will sustain your interest over several months, to conceptualize and contextualize the critical questions that enlist your keenest curiosity, to engage with secondary materials productively, to articulate the stakes of your inquiry, and to develop a persuasive critical voice and argument.

I encourage you to think about potential thesis projects over the summer. Ideally, you will have narrowed the field to a couple of options by the start of fall semester. In addition to the assigned readings, the work for that semester will entail some preliminary research, thinking, and writing that will culminate in a thesis proposal and annotated bibliography by the semester’s end.

During the spring semester students will meet with me in individual conferences and share preliminary drafts in working groups. Portions of the thesis will be submitted for feedback at regular intervals. A draft of the entire thesis will be due in early April; the final version will be due in early May.

Students who satisfactorily complete H195A-B (the Honors Course) will satisfy the Research Seminar requirement for the English major. (More details about H195A prerequisites, how and when students will be informed of the results of their applications, etc., are in the paragraph about the Honors Course on page 2 of the instructions area of this Announcement of Classes.)

To be considered for admission to this course, you will need to electronically apply by:

• Clicking on the link below and filling out the application you will find there, bearing in mind that you will also need to attach:

• a PDF of your Academic Summary (go into Cal Central, click your "My Academics" tab, then click "View Academic Summary" and "Print as PDF"),

• a PDF of your non-UC Berkeley transcript(s), if any,

• a PDF (or Word document) of a critical paper that you wrote for another class (the length of this paper not being as important as its quality), and

• a PDF (or Word document) of a personal statement, including why you are interested in taking this course and indicating your academic interest and, if possible, the topic or area you are thinking of addressing in your honors thesis.

The deadline for completing this application is 11 PM, FRIDAY, MAY 11.