English 100

Junior Seminar: Literature of the Americas

Section Semester Instructor Time Location Course Areas
4 Fall 2007 Jones, Donna V.
Jones, Donna
MW 4-5:30 130 Wheeler

Other Readings and Media

Todorov, T.: The Conquest of America : The Question of the Other;Women's Indian Captivity Narratives; Conrad, J.: Nostromo ; Whitman, W.: Leaves of Grass ; Enrique, J.: Rod� Ariel ; Dreiser, T.: Sister Carrie ; Galeano, E.: Memory of Fire: Genesis


This course takes a comparative look at the literature of North and South America , focusing on the construction of racial and regional identities in a comparative context. We shall also explore the question of method, through an examination of critical writings on the relation between historiography and literature. The story of the New World is often represented as discontinuous, fragmented�beginning with the histories of its indigenous people, interrupted by the multiple histories of conquest, pacification and migration. In our examination of literature and critical work which examines the historical events of conquest, slavery and modernization we shall address these questions: How does the way we narrate history influence our perception of past events? What role does fiction play in the construction of national or regional historical identities? What modes of emplotment are used to narrate history in the Americas : tragedy, comedy or romance, narratives of conquest, apocalypse or degeneration?

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