English 166

Special Topics: Studies in Literature and Environment (Shelter and Weather)

Section Semester Instructor Time Location Course Areas
2 Spring 2017 Francois, Anne-Lise
MWF 3-4 255 Dwinelle Special Topics

Other Readings and Media

See below.


What makes environmental violence hard to represent and how can literature bear witness to the silence, slowness, and invisibility of ecological relations? Of what use is the problematic concept of “nature” in ordering our relations to other living beings?  What kinds of literacy are required to have “a sense of place” or a knowledge of the seasons? Is such literacy comparable to the kind of attention that reading poetry often demands? This course will address these questions by examining the role of language and literature in making possible different kinds of interaction between people and environments.  Other topics will include; relations between rural workers and landscape tourists; the role of memory and imagination in writing about place and the loss of place; weather-reporting and other ways of counting time; fantasies about ecological disaster and science’s ability to save or destroy humankind; figures of shelter and exposure.   

Books (available at University Press Books, not the Cal Student Store): Mary Austin, Land of Little Rain; Matsuo Bashō, Narrow Road to the Deep North; Rachel Carson, Silent Spring; Ann Fisher-Worth and Laura-Gray Street, The Ecopoetry Anthology; Greg Sarris, Mabel McKay: Weaving the Dream; Mary Shelley, Frankenstein; Henry Thoreau, Walden; Dorothy Wordsworth, Grasmereand Alfoxden Journals

A reader with critical readings by Berger, Davis, Heidegger, Nixon, Solnit, Thompson, Vivieros de Castro, Galeano, Williams, & others

Films: Baichwal/Burtynsky, Manufactured Landscapes; Haynes, Safe; Herzog, Grizzly Man; Scott, Bladerunner; Varda, The Gleaners and I; ZhangKe Jia, Still Life

Other Recent Sections of This Course

Spring, 2019
Course & Section Course Name Course Areas
166/1 Special Topics: Gothic Duncan, Ian
166/2 Special Topics: Marxism and Literature Gonzalez, Marcial
166/4 Special Topics: Poetry and Prose of Race and Social Class Giscombe, Cecil S.
166/5 Special Topics: Asian American Literature - World, Nation, Locality Leong, Andrew Way
166/6 Special Topics: Realism, Then and Now Cordes Selbin, Jesse
166/7 Special Topics: Anton Chekhov Muza, Anna
Fall, 2018
Course & Section Course Name Course Areas
166/2 Special Topics: Alfred Hitchcock Bader, Julia
166/3 Special Topics: Journeys: British World-Building, c. 700-1700 Miller, Jasmin
166/4 Special Topics: "this morning's minion": Sonic Mysticism in Gerard Manley Hopkins and Emily Dickinson Stancek, Claire Marie
166/5 Special Topics Le, Serena
Spring, 2018
Course & Section Course Name Course Areas
166/1 Special Topics: Comedy & Violence Flynn, Catherine
166/2 Special Topics: Romantic Science Goldstein, Amanda Jo
166/3 Special Topics: Classical & Renaissance Drama Knapp, Jeffrey
166/4 Special Topics: Marxism & Literature Lye, Colleen
166/5 Special Topics: Emily Dickinson Shoptaw, John
166/6 Special Topics: Speculative Fiction Jones, Donna V.
Summer, 2018
Course & Section Course Name Course Areas
166/1 Special Topics: Speculative Fictions, Possible Futures O'Brien, Geoffrey G.
166/2 Special Topics: Games of Thrones, Medieval to Modern Strub, Spencer
Fall, 2017
Course & Section Course Name Course Areas
166/3 Special Topics: Black Science Fiction Serpell, C. Namwali
166/4 Special Topics: Writing Poetry and Nonfiction, Writing as Social Practice Giscombe, Cecil S.
Spring, 2017
Course & Section Course Name Course Areas
166/1 Special Topics: Marxism and Literature Lye, Colleen
166/3 Special Topics: Slavery and Conspiracy Wagner, Bryan
166/4 Special Topics: Literature in the Century of Film Goble, Mark
166/5 Special Topics: Modern Irish Literature Falci, Eric

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