English 179

Upper Division Coursework: Literature and Linguistics

Section Semester Instructor Time Location Course Areas
1 Spring 2007 Banfield, Ann
Banfield, Ann
TTh 3:30-5 340 Moffitt

Other Readings and Media

Lord, A.: A Singer of Tales; Fabb, N.: Linguistics and Literature; Foley, J. M.: The Theory of Oral Composition: History and Methodology; Beckett, S.: Nohow On; Beowulf, dual language edition, Heaney, S. translator; Mansfield, K.: Stories; Woolf, V.: To the Lighthouse


This course will examine the linguistic features which mark a specifically ?poetic? or ?literary? use of language from those uses of language which are not literary. The topics covered will include meter, rhyme, repetitions, or grammatical patterns as well as the ?oral formulaic theory? of the epic, all specific to poetry, and the uses of pronouns, tenses and subjective features of language particular to written prose narratives, especially the novel and the novelistic style known as ?free indirect style? or ?represented speech and thought?. We will also discuss Samuel Beckett?s late style. Some questions to be raised are: Can we define genres (novel, lyric, etc.) linguistically? Are there differences between the linguistics of writing as opposed to that of oral forms? But the course also aims to give you methods for analyzing literary texts that can be the first step to interpretation. No knowledge of linguistics will be presupposed, but linguistic concepts will be introduced and explained.

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