English 138

Studies in World Literature in English: Global Cities


Section Semester Instructor Time Location Course Areas
1 Fall 2016 Saha, Poulomi
MWF 1-2 223 Dwinelle British 20th- and 21st-Century
American Literature
World Literature

Book List

Boo, Katherine: Behind the Beautiful Forevers; Buekes, Lauren: Zoo City; Cole, Teju: Open City; Smith, Zadie: White Teeth

Description

Globalization has given rise to a new kind of urban space, a nexus where the networks of capital, labor, and bodies meet: the global city. This course, a survey of contemporary Anglophone literature, considers the narratives—fictional and otherwise—that live in those cities, the stories those cities give birth to. Our itinerary will take us to five global cities: New York, London, Johannesburg, Mumbai, and Hong Kong. At each stop we will consider representations of these cities and their inhabitants from above and from below, from theories of transnational capital to narratives of the dispossessed. Are these cities sites of interconnection and aspiration, or do they indicate a world increasingly unequal and divided? How do the local and the foreign intersect in these global urban spaces? What do they tell us about globalization, its histories, and the literary and cultural forms it now takes?

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