English R50

Freshman and Sophomore Studies: The "Odd Woman"

Section Semester Instructor Time Location Course Areas
1 Spring 2011 Knox, Marisa Palacios
Knox, Marisa
TTh 9:30-11 222 Wheeler

Other Readings and Media

Woolf, V.: A Room of One's Own; Bronte, C.: Villette; Collins, W.: The Woman in White; Gissing, G.: The Odd Women

Recommended: Gibaldi, J.: MLA Handbook for Writers of Research Papers, 7th edition


"So many odd women--no making a pair with them."

This course will examine the figure of the "odd woman" in a variety of texts. The term "odd women" arose in the nineteenth century to describe women who could not (and in some cases would not) marry. Not only will we read narratives about single, "superfluous" women, but we will also explore the other connotations of oddness: eccentricity, idiosyncrasy, and isolation. In so doing, we will be able to consider more broadly how the odd subject interacts with society in a particular time period through representations not only of gender but also class, nationality, religion, education, psychology, law, and politics.

Students will be working to cultivate their own distinctive voice by writing and revising three papers of increasing length. They will also be learning strategies of research in order to frame and support their arguments most effectively.

English R50 is intended for students who are planning to be English majors and who have already taken R1A. It satisfies the College's R1B requirement.

This course may not be counted as one of the twelve courses required for the English major.

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