English N1A

Reading & Composition: Love Songs

Section Semester Instructor Time Location Session Course Areas
1 Summer 2015 Perry, R. D.
MW 2-4 78 Barrows

Book List

Chaucer, Geoffrey: Dream Visions and Other Poems; Morrison, Toni: Beloved; Ovid: Metamorphoses (trans. Allen Mandelbaum); Shakespeare, William: A Midsummer Night's Dream

Other Readings and Media

We will also watch at least one film: Igmar Bergman's Smiles of a Summer Night.


This course takes as its object of study works of art that concern themselves with the nature of “love.”  Arguably the most popular and ubiquitous of aesthetic productions, what we will broadly be calling Love Songs are now perhaps most closely associated with lyric poetry.  However, the feeling that we call “love” has a rich history with a wide variety of formal and semantic variation.  Throughout this course, we will look at different historical moments and ask of each what is meant by the term “love” and what kinds of strategies of representation seemed most suitable to it. In particular, we will investigate a tradition of writings about love that understand it in relation to the transformation of the subject. Love changes you, these writers agree, but how and into what?

So, “love” is the subject of our course, but not the work of the course.  The purpose of N1A is to focus on your writing.  We will spend a lot of time in class talking about how you would write on this material, from working on the construction of sentences and paragraphs to the formulation of thesis statements and how to best argue them.  You will write four different papers over the course of the semester, revising most of them at least once.

This course is open only to students who have already passed the Entry-Level Writing Requirement/Subject A test (or equivalent), which is administered several months before summer classes start.

Note to international students:  This is not a course in English as a Second Language. Please see the College Writing Program for the ESL courses that program offers.

This course will be taught in Session C, from June 22 to August 12.

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