Undergraduate Courses

AML 2600

Introduction to the African American Literary Tradition

Dr. Maxine L. Montgomery
Tu/Th, 9:45AM-11:00AM, WMS 120

This liberal studies course introduces students to representative works in African-American Literature and Culture with a view to interrogating the close relationship between black writing and vernacular sources. We begin our survey with a focus on the slave narrative, then consider the symbolic acts of religion, speech, and music that undergird written texts. Not only will our overview cover major figures, texts, and concerns during successive historical moments, our readings direct attention to the search for freedom, wholeness, and self-identity in an American promised land.

AML 3311

Major American Figures: The Harlem Renaissance

Alisha Gaines
Tu/Th, 1:20PM-2:35PM, WMS 114

This course considers the Major American authors shaping and reshaping American literature from 1919-1940, the years also known as the “Harlem Renaissance.” As a prolific literary, arts, and cultural movement, the Harlem Renaissance birthed many of the authors we now consider canonical (fraught as that term is.) For example, we will debate the place and value of Black art with the works of W. E. B. Du Bois and Langston Hughes; engage in the lyrical and ethnographic romance of Zora Neale Hurston’s novels; challenge the rigidity of the color line with Nella Larsen; and understand citizenship and modernity with Alain Locke.

AML 3630

Latino/a Literature in English: Latinx Studies on Trial

Dr. John Ribó
Tu/Th, 11:35AM - 12:50PM, WMS 0002

“Latinx Studies on Trial” frames an introductory survey of Latinx literature from the colonial period to the present within contemporary debates on the role of ethnic studies in public education and public life in the United States. Throughout the semester as we read memoirs, essays, poems, short stories, plays, and novels, we will return to questions raised by the banning of Mexican American Studies and the censorship of books written by Latinx authors in Arizona in 2010 and the denial of tenure of prominent Latinx Studies scholars at Ivy League universities a decade later. Why was the Mexican American Studies curriculum banned? Why were these books censored? Why were these scholars denied tenure? Who sets educational curricula and defines literary canons?

This course meets the diversity requirement.

AML 4213.001

EARLY AMERICAN LITERATURE AND CULTURE: OLD FLORIDA: LITERATURE, PLACE, PUBLIC MEMORY

John Mac Kilgore
Tu/Th, 4:50PM-6:05PM WMS 002

How does Florida (especially Tallahassee) choose to preserve, narrate, and commemorate its early history through museums, memorials, monuments, and other historical sites? What does Mission San Luis say—or not say—about Spanish colonization of the area, the Goodwood Museum about plantation slavery? How does our “public memory” of Florida change, how are official histories challenged, when we prioritize Black and Indigenous voices and knowledge, literature and culture? And more to the point for this class, can we think of literature as itself a form of cultural memory opening up alternative narrative perspectives on Florida history and culture? This course will tackle questions such as these by surveying the early literature of Florida from the period of first nations through the nineteenth century, and then putting our reading into conversation with sites of public memory in and around Tallahassee. That means you will be making a few site visits in town and analyzing the material rhetorics of history and place. The goal is to understand the political, cultural, and literary legacy of Florida, yesterday and today, from an anti-racist, anti-colonial viewpoint. We will consider the power of early Florida literature to shape our contemporary politics of public memory; conversely, we will approach sites of public memory as narrative forms which tell weighted stories about Florida at the intersection of fact and fiction, history and ideology.

This course meets the pre-1800 and diversity requirement.

AML 4604

The African American Literary Tradition: ‘Black Is Beautiful,’ 1920s-2020s: A Century of Aesthetic Inquiry

Dr. Lamar Wilson
Tu/Th, 9:45AM-11:00AM, WMS 110

“We know that we are beautiful. And ugly too,” New Negro Renaissance superstar Langston Hughes wrote in The Nation in his 1926 manifesto “The Negro Artist and Racial Mountain,” a response to “The Negro Art Hokum,” conservative satirist George Schuyler’s week-old essay in the same publication. Hughes was frustrated with the notion that Black folk must emulate those who had enslaved them and assimilate to European standards of “American” beauty. Who could live up to this impossible rubric, rooted in imitation, not self-expression and self-definition? Why should such a rubric even be required?

This course begins at the apocryphal moment Black writers debated about how the children and grandchildren of newly emancipated African Americans should express themselves in literature (drama, fiction, nonfiction, poetry), dance, music, film, and visual art; delineate their singular contributions; and define their original aesthetic standards outside those that had shaped misperceptions of them and their cultural contributions. Alongside primary texts across these genres, we will study the debates driving the evolution of Black art over the past century. To this end, we will investigate two central questions: How have Black Americans invoked and revoked the stereotypical characterizations of Blackness that persist (Mammy, Uncle Tom, Buck, Jezebel, Sambo, Pickaninny, etc.)? To what end are contemporary conceptions and representations of beauty shaped by these archetypes? By this course’s end, you will be able to answer, with greater confidence and complexity, what makes Blackness—with all its wonders, flaws, and fraught humanities—beautiful, “way back then” and now?

This course meets the major’s diversity requirement. Students must email Dr. Wilson affirming their interest and investment in the sensitive matters in this course before enrollment.

AML 4680.001

Studies in Ethnic Literature: Growing Up Other(wise)

Frances Tran
Tu/Th, 8:00AM-9:15AM, WMS 121B

This course explores how authors of color narrate their experiences of growing up as “others” in America, a nation that putatively celebrates equality, freedom, and democracy for all. We will discuss how their stories are shaped by historical and ongoing conditions of racism, forced cultural assimilation, and the traumatic effects of migration and war. In addition, we will contemplate the different strategies of survival and various solidarities children of color enact in their commitment to growing up otherwise, that is, in resistance to the oppressive force of U.S. institutions, norms, and values. This course prompts an approach to “childhood” as a historical, social, and cultural formation embedded in larger systems of domination. Together, we will examine how processes of racialization, especially as they intersect with class, gender, sexuality, and disability, render some children illegible as “children” and thus incapable of enjoying a childhood because they are perceived as undeserving of care, rights, and protection. Although the bildungsroman or coming-of-age stories will be the primary genre under analysis, we will consider how it manifests in a variety of forms, including memoir, novels, short stories, poetry, and comics. We will supplement our reading of primary texts with scholarship from children’s studies, literary and cultural studies, ethnic studies, and other related fields.

This course fulfills the distribution requirements for diversity.

CRW 3110

Fiction Technique

Virgil Suarez
Tu/Th, 3:05PM-4:20PM, WMS 002

This course will focus (intensely so on fiction techniques and methods of creating short fiction. During the semester you will write short assignments based on prompts and exercises. Although we will discuss your work as it progresses, this class is NOT a workshop.

CRW 3110

Fiction Technique: Short story workshop

Marcie Alexander
M/W/F, 10:40AM-11:30AM, WMS 319

This introductory creative writing workshop focuses on the craft of the short story. We will read craft essays and published stories to study many of the core elements of fiction, including character, narration, setting, dialogue, and conflict. By engaging with work that spans the 20th and 21st century, you'll gain an understanding of the development and form of the short story, and the ways that contemporary short fiction, including your own work, engages with and subverts this tradition. You'll apply this knowledge as you write and revise your own short fiction over the course of the semester, receiving feedback from your instructor and peers in a traditional workshop setting.

CRW 3110.003

Fiction Technique

Sarah Robinson
M/W/F, 9:20AM-10:10AM, WMS 0002

This course is designed for upper-level undergraduate students interested in understanding and constructing fiction, specifically the short story, whether you have been scribbling away in isolation for years or are new to creative writing. Our goals for the course are to develop a solid writing practice, to explore basic craft concepts and apply them to our own work, to experiment with different approaches to fiction, and to familiarize ourselves with a supportive workshop process. Classwork will include reading and discussing published stories and craft essays, writing exercises, the completion and revision of a full draft of a short story, and participating in workshop.

CRW 3110.004

Fiction Technique

Nicholas Brasco
M/W, 4:50PM-6:05PM, WMS 204

Rules are made to be broken. This course focuses on short fiction, the best of which often breaks or bends the established rules in order to advance the form. In order for you to eventually break these rules, you need to know what they are. As such, we will be closely reading published short stories and craft essays as you cultivate your own process for writing stories.

CRW 3110.005

Fiction Technique: Crafting Narrative Voice

Sarah Destin
M/W/F, 12:00PM-12:50PM, WMS 108

This introductory fiction workshop will expose students to a wide range of literary voices and teach students to read like a writer. Students will compose short creative exercises addressing elements like point-of-view, characterization, dialogue, and conflict to help prepare them to write their own full-length stories. Our emphasis will be on experimentation as well as on developing skill and craft. Students will be required to workshop their own full-length creative work and provide quality feedback on their peers’ writing.

CRW 3311.001

Poetic Technique: “A Formal Feeling Comes”

Chris Watkins
Tu/Th, 8:00AM-9:15AM, WMS 120

This course offers the opportunity to write poems, read poems, and to discuss contemporary poetics as well as our indebtedness to the poets of the past. The class will run as a combination of writing workshop and literary study. Each week, students will write, and a small group will have one poem workshopped by the class in a round-table discussion. In addition, each week we will read contemporary collections/selections by poets such as Danez Smith, Patricia Lockwood, Natasha Trethewey, Patricia Smith, torrin greathouse, and Natalie Diaz (among others). We will read (and sometimes be challenged to write) forms received from various poetic traditions ranging from the haibun to the ghazal as well those created/modified by contemporary poets from the burning haibun to the golden shovel. The course will culminate in a writing portfolio of students’ work with the hope of producing and editing poems fit for publication.

CRW 3311.002

Poetic Technique

Stephen Hundley
Tu/Th, 9:45AM-11:00AM, WMS 116

This course is for aspiring poets and critics. Poetic Technique studies multiple forms of poetry, both experimental and traditional. Students will read, analyze, and practice writing long and short form poetry. Students will have opportunities to share their writing, but this will not be a poetry workshop, with emphasis placed on the study of contemporary published work, the historic movement to and away from formal approaches to poetry, and the state of the field today.

CRW 3311.003

Poetic Technique: Imaginary Gardens, Real Toads

Natalie Tombasco
Tu/Th, 3:05PM-4:20PM, DIF 236

Marianne Moore once described poetry as "imaginary gardens with real toads in them," perhaps, gesturing towards how the poet leans into their imaginative power in an attempt to relay material realities. This course will discover the toolbox of writing poetry as a contemporary American poet. We will focus on subject matter, image, figurative language, forms, the poetic line, and developing a style/accessing your voice in poetry, among other aspects. We will read exemplary contemporary poems and discuss them on a craft level. Additionally, each student will compose their own poems to be workshopped by the class on assigned dates.

CRW 3311.004

Poetic Technique: Intimacy and Intensity in the Lyric

Max Lasky
M/W/F, 10:40AM-11:30AM, WMS 120

Through the reading of 20th and 21st century American poetry, supported by international poetry in translation and craft essays, this course will explore the many shapes a poem can take. Focusing on aspects such as the line, the image, syntax and diction, narrative and lyric, students will learn not only how to create a composition that is both intimate and intense, but also how their own work fits into a much larger tradition. Students will be expected to complete the readings with rigor and to workshop their own poems regularly.

CRW 3311.005

Poetic Technique: Exploring Craft, Form, and the Unconscious Mind

Anthony Borruso
Tu/Th, 4:50PM-6::05PM, WMS 116

Calling all poets! This course will concentrate on developing the skills that one needs to read and write poetry, exploring different aspects of craft, such as musicality, rhythm, form, image, lineation, voice, and many others. As we read through a diverse group of contemporary writers with a wide array of poetic approaches, we will develop a better sense of the intentions behind their linguistic choices as well as how we can apply their varied strategies to the poems that we workshop. These close readings will help us to find poetic inspiration in our daily lives, teaching us to be more mindful of the world and the symbolic resonance of our experiences. We will also partake in various prompts and free-writing exercises that are meant to fuel the imagination and foster a language that is charged with surprise and significance.

CRW 4120.001

Fiction Workshop

Russ Franklin
W, 6:35PM-9:35PM, WMS 201

In this course you will write short stories and workshop your short stories. The course provides you with an audience for your stories—an audience of both writing peers and a teacher/writer. All your work is public and at times you will be required to read your work out loud. My role will be that of teacher/editor, teaching you techniques and also trying to suggest changes for revision of your work. Texts: Best American Short Stories 2022, Best American Science Fiction and Fantasy 2022, Flash Fiction Forward, Creativity Inc..

CRW 4120.002

Fiction Technique

Mark Winegardner
W, 3:05PM-6:05PM, WMS 415

In this workshop—taught by a New York Times-bestselling novelist and 4-time teaching-award winner in FSU’s elite MFA/PhD-granting creative writing program—you will focus on the creation, revision, and realization of competent apprentice-level short fiction.

The course is structured so that you’re free to fail (students who do all the work earnestly and on time are GUARANTEED a grade no lower than a B), but you'll learn how to embrace the positive, liberating value of the kind of failure that's crucial to any true artist's apprenticeship. If you do the work and trust the process, you're certain to walk away from this class a more sophisticated reader and a dramatically better writer.

We’ll prioritize four fundamentals, approaching them the way an apprentice carpenter would a hammer, saw, screwdriver, and wrench—simple tools, but until you master them, you can't do much of anything:

  1. What's really meant by the oversimplified advice "show, don't tell."
  2. Acute and chronic tension (what that means, how nearly all stories are an interplay between those two elements, how this is established at the very beginning of the story).
  3. Short-story structure, with an emphasis on openings.
  4. Basic narrative shapes.

The course will also touch on such practical matters as how (and when) to start publishing, how (and whether) to apply to graduate creative writing programs, and how to make a living as a working writer.

CRW 4120.003

Fiction Workshop: Staging and Subtext

Prof. Ravi Howard
Tu/Th, 9:45AM-11:00AM WMS 121

This course is designed to provide a space for students to develop fiction in a workshop environment. Students will begin the semester writing short exercises that will support the development of two workshop stories, a prompt workshop submission, and one work of flash fiction. This combination of pieces will allow students to explore variations in their voices and approaches. The writers should leave the course with a more concise set of questions to consider as they develop new and existing work. Through our questions and discussions, each writer will be encouraged to provide quality feedback and to evaluate the critiques received from others.

Course Pre-Requisites: Fiction Technique, Article & Essay Technique, or Poetry Technique

CRW 4120.004

Fiction Workshop

Elizabeth Stuckey-French
Tu/Th, 11:35AM-12:50PM, WMS 110

Because this is an advanced class, we'll brush up on the basics and then move beyond them to explore some of the subtleties of the craft. What risks do published writers take and how can you learn from them? What risks might you take in your own fiction? How can you make your own fiction as dramatic, intense and engaging as possible? Our goal is the creation of a community of writers who can learn from and help each other. Courage, honesty and dedication are expected.

CRW 4320.002

Poetry Workshop

James Kimbrell
Th, 3:05PM-6:05PM WMS 121B

This course hopes to introduce the student to a variety of means to a very specific end: the crafting of a poem that is not only a clear expression of your imagination, but that is capable of becoming an imaginative vehicle for its reader. This pursuit will be carried out within the context of weekly guided and independent readings of a wide selection of contemporary poetry. Students will concentrate especially on writing for an audience, creating concrete and evocative imagery, and exploring a variety of different strategies for the drafting and revising of their poems.

CRW 4320.003

Advanced Poetry Workshop: Mining Memory/Beyond the Anti-Elegy

Dr. Lamar Wilson
Tu, 3:05PM-6:05PM, WMS 110

In this course, we will move beyond parsing the important, intricate details of prosody you’ve encountered in the prerequisite course, CRW 3311 (and possibly other sections of CRW 4320), and write into and against modes and schools of thought that dominate contemporary poetics, particularly our intense moment of hypervisibility and hyperviolence. We will focus not only on refining the single “perfect poem” but also curating a series of poems whose speakers’ voices we can modulate to interrogate personal and cultural history and memory with greater veracity. We will attend to the ways that the performance of race, gender, and nationality contemporize and transform the ancient elegy and other modes of writing. To achieve this ambitious feat, rather than reading several books, we will spend the better part of the semester studying these modes and schools vis-à-vis representative writers over successive fortnights before reading two to four new collections as exemplary models of our aim of producing a small poetry collection.

Students must email Dr. Wilson affirming their interest and investment in the sensitive matters in this course before enrollment.

Course Pre-Requisites: CRW 3311

ENC 3021.001

Rhetoric

Gabriela Diaz Guerrero
M/W/F, 1:20PM-2:10PM, WMS 204

ENC3021 is one of three core courses for the Editing, Writing, and Media (EWM) track and works to provide a foundation for the major. Studying the history of rhetoric provides students with foundational rhetorical principles and building blocks, crucial for writers, editors, and evolving scholars. Students will trace Western rhetorical theories and practices as they have evolved and changed throughout their 2500-year history. We begin here because these notions have informed so much about how we communicate with each other and shape the world around us. Although we’ll start with the “classics,” we don’t stop there, and you’ll find both that the present often appears in the past, and the past stays with us as we move toward the present. In this way, this course will require us to time (and space) travel throughout the semester. In our travels, we’ll focus on analyzing and critiquing elements of classical rhetorical theory with a focus on how we might use rhetoric more democratically, inclusively, equitably, and justly. To do this, we’ll draw on works from post-modern rhetoricians, biologists, teachers, philosophers, and many others. Ultimately, this course will encourage students to think about rhetoric as it permeates so many important aspects of social interaction, from identity, to power, to our notions of truth and knowledge, as we also begin to think about how these aspects constantly shape us in return.

ENC 3021.005

Rhetoric: Feminist Rhetoric

Brittany Barron
ONLINE SYNCHRONOUS, M/W/F, 9:20AM-10:10AM

Most of us are familiar with the rhetorical principles of ethos, pathos, and logos, and the idea of appealing to an audience. Or–when we consider the wider world of public and civic life–we associate rhetoric either with moving political speeches or with persuasive sleight of hand designed to mislead. Although these ideas and techniques–rooted in classical Greek rhetoric–certainly exist, they exclude some of the most omnipresent, diverse, and varied examples of rhetoric throughout history and surrounding us in the world today.

It is by now a commonplace to say that women’s voices have been absent from the Western rhetorical tradition, as either practitioners or theorists. The last thirty years, however, have produced a number of challenges to such assumptions, as well as to the masculinist traditions of classical rhetoric. As a result, an extensive recovery project has been underway. While recovering–and finally hearing–women’s voices is one thing, discovering or creating a feminist rhetoric as a corollary to the masculinist tradition is quite another.

This course calls into question the way Western rhetorical theories have been thought about and taught through a white, patriarchal lens. We will begin and end our course with a central question: what is feminist rhetoric?

ENC 3310.001

Article & Essay Technique: Writing the Self, Writing the World

Gwen Niekamp
Tu/Th, 8:00AM-9:15AM, WMS 0114

This section of ENC 3310 is an introductory course in the craft of creative nonfiction, a genre that includes a miscellany of forms aimed at the artful presentation of truth, fact, experience, and memory. Situated within this genre are essays of all kinds (personal, lyric, meditational, etc.); works of reportage (literary journalism, profiles, science writing, nature writing, travel writing, etc.); works that tell life stories (autobiography, biography, memoir, etc.); works of cultural, literary, and political criticism; and more. Some works of nonfiction will fit comfortably within one of these subgenres, but many will resist easy categorization. In this class, we will explore the many possibilities of the genre by reading and discussing published work and by writing original pieces of creative nonfiction, two of which will be workshopped (read, critiqued, and discussed) by the class.

ENC 3310.002

Article & Essay Technique: Writing Creative Nonfiction

Liesel Hamilton
M/W/F, 12:00PM-12:50PM, WMS 120

In this course we will investigate the terms “creative nonfiction” and “essay” and their varied meanings, as well as what we can do with these forms. Reading, writing, and discussion are all important in this class. Throughout the semester you will analyze contemporary published writing, your classmates’ work, and your own writing, gaining the skills not only to better your own compositions, but also your ability to think critically and speak about writing as a craft. Over the course of the semester, we will read many different types of nonfiction writing including personal essays, lyric essays, graphic essays, researched essays, journalistic essays, etc. to understand the breadth of the genre. You will get a chance to try your hand at these varied forms and to workshop the writing you create.

ENC 3310.004

Article and Essay Technique

Natassja Schiel
M/W, 6:35PM-7:50PM, WMS 120

ENC 3310 Article and Essay Technique is an introductory course in the craft of creative nonfiction, a genre that includes creative use of prose craft techniques to present truth, fact, experience, and memory. Creative nonfiction includes a wide range of works including: memoir, personal essay, lyrical essay, literary journalism, profiles, science writing, nature writing, travel writing, biography, cultural criticism, and more. Expect to engage with several modes of nonfiction, personal essays, and memoir excerpts written by writers like you and unlike you. No topics are off limits — including, but not limited to: sexuality, the body, violence, race, religion, etc. Please be aware that some material may be triggering. We’ll also study works on the craft of nonfiction, and you’ll produce your own pieces of creative nonfiction to be workshopped in class.

ENC 3310.005

Article and Essay Technique

Daniel Sutter
M/W/F, 10:40AM-11:30AM, WMS 108

This course is for upper-level undergraduate students interested in writing creative nonfiction. Creative nonfiction exists on a spectrum that stretches between researched, journalistic articles on the one hand, and lyrical personal essays on the other. The genre is "nonfiction," and as such, it tries to be true, with the recognition that truth is sometimes various, not always objective, and exists within a contract established between the writer and the reader. At the same time, the genre is "creative," and uses many of the techniques of fiction, such as scenes, dialogue, characters, setting, sensory detail, narrative, point of view, conflict, etc. The genre has a vast history, and we can learn from great writers if we learn to read as writers. In this course, we will explore and practice a wide range of styles within the genre of creative nonfiction. The core tenet of the course is this: writing is an ongoing process as well as expression, and so it requires time, revision, and artful attention to craft.

ENC 3416.002

Writing and Editing in Print and Online

Amanda Ayers
M/W/F, 9:20AM-10:10AM, WMS 108

ENC 3416 (WEPO) is one of three core courses for Editing, Writing, Media (EWM), and as such, it helps provide a foundation for the major. This course introduces you to the principles of composing and editing across different media environments, paying special attention to how your process will be affected when working in different contexts, with different materials and genres, for different audiences.

This course attempts to help you: (1) understand principles of composing and rhetoric, especially the ways they function across different composing spaces to aid you in working across multiple forms and composing areas; (2) compose for each of three spaces—print (physical), digital (screen), and network (online) using different technologies and design strategies; (3) edit and revise appropriately the texts created in each space and learning how to transform them where necessary; and (4) understand the relationships that exist across and between texts, technologies, and materials.

To accomplish these goals, we'll engage with multiple kinds of texts: we’ll read some, write some, talk about some, and create remediated forms of some. Throughout, we’ll be developing a language and a vocabulary that we can use to describe those texts and interactions and to describe what happens to them – and to us – when we do this work.

ENC 3416.003

Writing and Editing in Print and Online

Ashley Pendleton
M/W, 4:50PM-6:05PM, WMS 121

This course focuses on the principles of composing, especially across different composing spaces. Students create works in several different media, including (1) in print, (2) on the screen, and (3) for the network, while also learning how to edit the works deployed in each medium appropriately. In addition, students repurpose at least one of these works for another medium. Students conclude the course by creating a digital portfolio.

ENC 3416.004

Writing and Editing in Print and Online (WEPO)

Bridgette Sanders
M/W/F, 1:20PM-2:10PM, WMS 120

Students in this course will compose written, visual, and/or auditory texts, using a variety of technologies, and they will be expected to create and edit in different modes and media while appealing to specific audiences. Students will conclude the course by creating a digital portfolio.

ENC 3416.005

Writing and Editing in Print and Online: Networked Public

Daniel Stefanelli
Tu/Th, 9:45AM-11:00AM, WMS 217

This course focuses on the principles of composing, especially across different composing spaces. Students create works in several different media, including (1) in print, (2) on the screen, and (3) for the network, while also learning how to edit the works deployed in each medium appropriately. In addition, students repurpose at least one of these works for another medium. Students conclude the course by creating a digital portfolio.

ENC 3416.006

Writing/Editing in Print & Online

Ashleah Wimberly
M/W, 3:05PM-4:20PM, WMS 110

ENG 3416: Writing & Editing in Print and Online ("WEPO") is one of three core courses for Editing, Writing, and Media major. As such, it helps provide a foundation for the major. This course introduces you to the principles of composing and editing across different media and explores how audiences access, create, and circulate ideas within and across different environments.

What difference do technologies, especially digital technology, make in the ways that we create, compose, and share knowledge? To answer this question, we’ll consider the relationship between language and technology, explore different theories of knowledge, and consider other influences on how we communicate such as politics, economics, identities, and ideologies.

ENC 3416.007

Writing and Editing in Print and Online: Understanding Composition and Ourselves

Micaela Cuellar
Tu/Th, 8:00AM-9:15AM, WMS 201

ENC 3416 (WEPO) is one of three core courses for Editing, Writing, Media (EWM), and as such, it helps provide a foundation for the major. This course acknowledges the complexity of composition today as it extends beyond writing for print by introducing students to the principles of composing and editing across different media environments, paying special attention to how your process will be affected when working in different contexts, with different materials and genres, for different audiences. This course aims to help students: 1) understand principles of composition across the many forms in which it occurs; 2) compose for three different spaces—print (physical), digital (screen), and network (online) using different technologies and design strategies; 3) appropriately revise and edit the texts created in each space, learning how to transform them where necessary; and 4) understand the relationships that exist across and between texts, technologies, and materials.

To accomplish these goals, we'll engage with multiple kinds of texts: we’ll read some, write some, talk about some, and create remediated forms of some. Throughout the course, we will spend time reflecting on the differences and similarities we experience when composing across various genres, and we will interrogate what happens to ourselves as writers/thinkers/creators as we engage in this work. Note: There is no official textbook for this course; instead, texts/readings will be provided via Canvas.

ENC 3493.001

Peer Tutoring in the Reading-Writing Center and Digital Studio: Tutoring across disciplines

Hannah Betz
Tu/Th, 8:00AM-9:15AM, WMS 318

This course explores acts of reading, writing, and composing: the people who do it, how they do it, and how to help others do it. Students are trained to tutor in the Reading-Writing Center and/or Digital Studio and actively work in those spaces. Completion of the course allows students to apply for openings in the RWC/DS staff.

ENC 4218.001

Visual Rhetoric in a Digital World

Michael Neal
Tu/Th 11:35AM 12:50PM, WMS 319

This course begins with the assumption that visual language is one of many available modes of discourse that neither displaces nor functions in isolation from other modalities. By studying visual rhetoric in various contexts, we will explore how rhetorical frameworks are applicable to some discussions and insufficient for others when studying the visual. Visual messages are present in print as well as in digital form, in film and television as well as on pages and signs, and in layout and design as well as in illustrations and photographs. Visual rhetoric is equally relevant in the Rembrandt exhibit at the MET as it is on the t-shirts of the patrons who visit each day.

This course will be divided into three modules beginning with defining key terms questions central to visual rhetoric: (e.g., How do we “read” or “make meaning of” visuals? How trustworthy are images? What kinds of argument can visuals make?) The second module will look at social implications of visual culture as they relate to power, surveillance, and various gazes. The third module looks at various sites of visual rhetoric that will give the class a chance to explore earlier theories in an array of meaningful contexts. Each module will include readings and smaller assignments that enact principles from the section.

Students will work on a larger multimodal essay or documentary video throughout the semester that will be accompanied by a critical reflection as the culminating project.

ENC 4218.002

Visual Rhetoric in a Digital World

Michael Neal
Tu/Th 1:20PM 2:35PM, WMS 319

This course begins with the assumption that visual language is one of many available modes of discourse that neither displaces nor functions in isolation from other modalities. By studying visual rhetoric in various contexts, we will explore how rhetorical frameworks are applicable to some discussions and insufficient for others when studying the visual. Visual messages are present in print as well as in digital form, in film and television as well as on pages and signs, and in layout and design as well as in illustrations and photographs. Visual rhetoric is equally relevant in the Rembrandt exhibit at the MET as it is on the t-shirts of the patrons who visit each day.

This course will be divided into three modules beginning with defining key terms questions central to visual rhetoric: (e.g., How do we “read” or “make meaning of” visuals? How trustworthy are images? What kinds of argument can visuals make?) The second module will look at social implications of visual culture as they relate to power, surveillance, and various gazes. The third module looks at various sites of visual rhetoric that will give the class a chance to explore earlier theories in an array of meaningful contexts. Each module will include readings and smaller assignments that enact principles from the section.

Students will work on a larger multimodal essay or documentary video throughout the semester that will be accompanied by a critical reflection as the culminating project.

ENC 4311.001

Advanced Article & Essay Workshop

Skip Horack
Monday, 3:05PM-6:05PM, WMS 120

Advanced Article and Essay Workshop (ENC 4311) is a course on the craft and art of creative nonfiction writing, only available for those students who have already satisfactorily completed Article & Essay Technique (ENC 3310). This course assumes you have a serious interest in creative nonfiction writing, as well as in discussing creative nonfiction writing with others likewise engaged. Our concerns are mainly practical and craft-based: where you as author wish to go with a particular draft, and how we, as readers and writers engaged in a common cause, might help you get there. This semester, we will mostly limit our writing and study to: (1) portraits and profiles; (2) literary journalism/reportage; and (3) the personal essay. Accordingly, we will examine how various craft points are at work in a number of published nonfiction pieces. These works will serve as templates for imitation and inspiration, and we will look at each one with the aim of learning how to develop our own unique voices, as well as a stronger sense of narrative rhythm and pacing necessary for effective storytelling. That said, this class will primarily follow the workshop model, and therefore student work, and the discussion of same, will be our main focus. To that end, over the course of the semester students will be required to produce and share a short essay of between 500-750 words, as well as two longer essays (8-15 pages each). Also, please note that students will be required to purchase a course reader from Target Copy at the beginning of the semester.

Course Pre-Requisites: ENC3310: Article & Essay Technique

ENC 4311.002

Advanced Article and Essay: Essays Like Exquisitely Carved Marble Statues Falling Out of the Sky, One After Another

David Kirby
Monday, 6:35PM-9:35PM, WMS 317

This course will feature short papers and a long one. It’ll also be conference-driven, so expect to sit knee-to-knee with your professor and work closely with him as the two of you pull out every sentence, make sure it’s the right size and shape, and put it back in like artists making a mosaic on the ceiling of one of those Byzantine churches of the Eastern Roman Empire. This same professor has published hundreds of essays in magazines and newspapers, and every one of them only appeared after undergoing some of the most excruciating copy editing imaginable, so you should expect the same. On the reward side, he’ll do his best to help you get your work published.

We’ll be reading two required texts, Vivian Gornick’s The Situation and the Story and Ned Stuckey-French’s One By One, The Stars (see order information on the scheduling web site and get these books early, as local stores don’t always stock them). The prerequisite for this class is ENC 3311. There you will have learned the basics. Here we’ll be making custom art works, durable and beautiful to the eye.

Course Pre-Requisites: ENC 3311

ENC 4404.001

Advanced Writing and Editing: Technical Writing and Social Justice

Dr. Mais Al-Khateeb
Tu/Th, 11:35AM-12:50PM, WMS 108

This course uses a social justice framework to engage with technical and professional communication (TPC). Course readings will introduce theoretical and practical perspectives (Keshab Acharya; Godwin Agboka; Huiling Ding; Natasha Jones; Rebecca Walton) that problematize notions of neutrality, objectivity, and efficiency and emphasize TPC as a critical tool for advocacy, activism, and coalition-building. We will compose, edit, and design technical texts (e.g., brochures, instruction sets, memos, websites, proposals, reports, etc.) and practice the principles of localization, usability, localization usability, accessibility, and human-centered design. This course offers students the opportunity to develop analytical and practical tools for producing, designing, and circulating a diversity of texts that address a wide range of audiences and contexts while centering issues of access, equity, and inclusion.

ENC 4404.003

Advanced Writing and Editing

Jaclyn Fiscus-Cannaday
Tu/Th, 1:20PM-2:35PM, WMS 121

The purpose of this course is to prepare you for designing documents, writing content, and copy-editing: three areas of expertise that you might take in future careers. Throughout our course, we will consider issues of inclusive design, writing, and editing practices. We will begin the semester with an overview of design principles, so that you can create realistic replicas of the genres you want to create. Then, we will learn the basics to writing for social change—and apply that knowledge to creating our own social campaigns. As we do, we will practice design and media writing, along with including a brief introduction to copy editing.

This course counts toward the “EWM Advanced Requirements” for the EWM major and can be used as electives credit for most other majors across the university. All are invited.

Course Pre-Requisites: ENC3416

ENC 4404.004

Advanced Writing and Editing

Jaclyn Fiscus-Cannaday
Tu/Th, 11:35AM-12:50PM, WMS 317

The purpose of this course is to prepare you for designing documents, writing content, and copy-editing: three areas of expertise that you might take in future careers. Throughout our course, we will consider issues of inclusive design, writing, and editing practices. We will begin the semester with an overview of design principles, so that you can create realistic replicas of the genres you want to create. Then, we will learn the basics to writing for social change—and apply that knowledge to creating our own social campaigns. As we do, we will practice design and media writing, along with including a brief introduction to copy editing.

This course counts toward the “EWM Advanced Requirements” for the EWM major and can be used as electives credit for most other majors across the university. All are invited.

Course Pre-Requisites: ENC3416

ENG 2012.0008

Introduction to English Studies

Tommy P. Cowan
Tu/Th, 6:35PM-7:50PM, WMS 114

In this course, we will learn about the theories, skills, and research that guide a wide range of English Studies. You should come away from this course with some ideas of how and where you see yourself fitting in to the discipline. If you already see yourself fitting into one area of English Studies, it is still important to know what’s within the entire discipline so that you can see the commonalities and contentions between subfields. We will cover topics such as the history of the English language, critical theory, rhetoric and composition, Literary Studies, Cinema Studies, linguistics, creative writing, English as a Second Language (or Second Language Studies), and technical writing. Instead of seeing these areas as separate, we will study them as intersecting concerns. For example, what does critical theory look like in literature versus cinema, versus composition & rhetoric? How should one teach creative writing versus teaching SLS? How should one teach creative writing and critical theory within SLS? What value can creative writing techniques offer technical writers, and vice versa? How has Literary Studies influenced creative writers? Discussion and presentations will be required in addition the writing assignments.

ENG 2012.001

Introduction to English Studies

Alec Jordan
Tu/Th, 8:00AM-9:15AM WMS 108

This course introduces students to the English major. It reviews the history of the discipline in ways that are accessible and meaningful to students and talks about current practices and areas of inquiry, including broadening of categories of interest to other forms of writing and media. It also helps students acquire skills that will be useful to them in their other courses, guiding students through annotation, analysis, drafting, workshopping, and revision through topical and text-based thesis development and argumentation. Students will additionally develop vocabulary for specialization in the major throughout the process. This class is intended to prepare students to be English majors, to show how English studies can be used both in college and a variety of career fields, and to explore the rewarding depth to be found in textual analysis and writing.

We will use the primary text Frankenstein (1818), by Mary Shelley, as a vehicle to explore various theories and approaches to reading and analyzing literature. We will write both on the text and beyond the text. With completion of this course, students will be prepared for the majority of the variety of assignments found in higher level English courses.

ENG 2012.007

Introduction to English Studies

Daniel Raschke
M/W, 6:35PM-7:50PM, WMS 108

This course helps students to think about what it means to be an English major. It reviews the history of the discipline in ways that are accessible and meaningful to students and talks about the current practices and areas of inquiry, including the broadening of categories of interest to other forms of writing and media. It also helps students to acquire skills that will be useful to them in their other courses. It will guide students through annotation and analysis, drafting, workshopping and revision, introduce the concepts of thesis and argumentation, and give students vocabulary for specialization. This class is intended to prepare students to be English majors, to show how English studies can be used both in college and their career choices and to expose them as well to the sheer pleasure of reading and writing.

ENG 2610.001

The Graphic Novel: Multimodal Storytelling

Aaron Rodriquez
Tu/Th, 8:00AM-9:15AM, WMS 002

This course examines comics and graphic novels, words-and-pictures as an imaginative art from the late nineteenth to the early twenty-first century. Students will be exposed to a spectrum of comic-art forms and a variety of modes and genres. Students will also be asked to read several examples of contemporary comics scholarship. We won’t be covering the entire comics field because that’s too much to tackle in a single course. Rather, we will concentrate on long-form (meaning book-length) comics, typically called graphic novels. More specifically, we will focus on three genres: superheroes, memoir, and sci-fi.

ENG 2610.002

The Graphic Novel

Henry Nooney
M/W/F, 10:40AM-11:30AM, WMS 121B

Drawing from its roots in pulp fiction and youth culture, this dynamic and diverse medium has transformed into what comics historian Scott McCloud describes as "a unique storytelling form that blends words and images in a way that no other medium can." As an evolving art form, comics have become a powerful vehicle for exploring complex themes and issues relevant to modern life, particularly in the “prestige” form of the graphic novel.

This course aims to examine some of the most compelling graphic novels of the past four decades, while equipping students with the tools to critically analyze and appreciate the art of comics. Through an exploration of the interplay between words, pictures, and typography, students will gain a deeper understanding of the rich narrative possibilities of this emerging literature.

ENG 3014.001

Understanding Theory: Imagining Otherwise

Savannah Trent
Tu/Th, 8:00AM-9:15AM, WMS 110

This course serves as an introduction to contemporary literary and cultural theory. In “The Race for Theory” Barbara Christian asserts that that minorities have always theorized in narrative forms and stories, using the literary to “[render] the world as large and as complicated” as we experience it and to explore how sensing and feeling are ways of knowing different truths of history, culture, and society (56). Kandice Chuh expands upon Christian’s idea and writes that ‘‘To imagine otherwise is not about imagining as the other, but rather, is about imagining the other differently’’ (9). Our class will take these assertions as points of departure and as invitations to deeply and thoroughly contemplate the worlds we inhabit, to critique existing conditions of injustice, and to imagine a more equitable future. Theory allows us not only to read literature more closely but to attune ourselves to the structures of power, social hierarchies, norms, and narratives that organize our understanding of identity, belonging, and home. Over the course of the semester, we will spend time unpacking and critiquing the central arguments and ideas of theoretical texts and scholarly discourses that include but are not limited to critical race studies, postcolonial theory, gender and sexuality studies, ecocriticism, affect studies, and biopolitics. We will also read a selection of short literary texts in order to better understand the theory and to make connections between the works we engage and the world around us.

ENG 3116.001

Documentary Film: The Art of Reconstructing Reality

Anthony Borruso
Tu/Th, 6:35PM-7:50PM, WMS 110

In this course, students study cinema’s ability to use documentary form to question the nature of truth, the politics of representation, the construction of the real, and the sociology of the image. Looking at documentaries, mockumentaries, and realist films, we will consider how they formulate their arguments and aesthetics as well as how they utilize cinematic elements such as montage, editing, blocking, lighting, and others. We will also examine how these films relate to pivotal film theory texts, thinking about how they illustrate the concepts of writers like Bazin and Eisenstein.

ENG 3803.001

The History of Text Technologies

Lindsey Eckert
ASYNCHRONOUS ONLINE

From papyrus scrolls and printed books to medieval manuscripts and audiobooks, this course examines different text technologies across history and across the globe. Throughout the course we will return to large "keep you up at night" questions: How does technology influence what types of texts are created and kept? How do social and economic power influence text technologies? How might the meaning of a text change if the medium of its presentation changes? Exploring these questions, we will develop detective skills to see aspects of text technologies that often remain hidden in plain sight, whether they be how new typefaces might alter a text’s meaning or how different techniques for binding a book might change the perception of what’s inside. Practicing this new way of seeing on historical text technologies will help us reflect more critically about the technologies we use today.

ENG 3803.002

History of Text Technologies: “Social Media” Across Time

Amory Orchard
M/W/F, 9:20AM-10:10AM, WMS 319

History of Text Technologies (colloquially known as "HoTT") examines the development of different text technologies across time and space. Tom Standage writes that humans have participated in "social media" for at least two millenia. Long before the digital age, we scrawled graffiti and life stories on village walls, passed along gossip in commonplace books, and continually developed new technologies and methods to circulate their messages more effectively.

During this course, we will explore the social and cultural conditions of text technologies, and how they shaped-- and continue to shape-- how people use (or decide not to use) them across the globe. Along the way, we will also practice how to be ethical historians who critically examine harmful narratives and biases towards the cultures whose text technologies we study.

Class activities will involve: developing our own text technologies, researching in FSU's Special Collections and Archives, and curating our own exhibits.

ENG 3803.004

History of Text Technologies

Leigh Edwards
ONLINE, ASYNCHRONOUS

This course explores the history of the changing media technologies that people have used to communicate. It examines a range of forms, including tattoo, scroll, manuscript, print, photograph, film, television, radio, and digital multimedia. We will assess how such technologies impact the meaning of texts as well as their socio-cultural conditions. “Text” can refer to any meaningful combination of “signs” (or symbols) that can be analyzed and interpreted, and textuality refers to how texts make meaning in context. This course combines the fields of media history, history of the book, and digital humanities as well as text technologies.

We will consider larger questions such as: How does the medium or the delivery technology impact a text’s meaning? For example, when your favorite novel is turned into a film, how does that alter its meaning? When the delivery technology changes, as when you go from listening to your favorite song on a vinyl record to listening to it on a digital streaming platform, how does that affect the song’s meaning?

Our case studies range from cave paintings to YouTube, Gutenberg to Google. We will tackle larger debates, such as the relationship between mediums, how different delivery technologies have their own affordances and constraints, what happens to old media when new media emerges, and important debates in media history. Assignments include frequent Canvas discussion posts, two shorter essays, a case study project, and the longer final essay.

This course meets the LMC genre requirement.

ENG 3931.001

Topics in English: ‘More Beautiful. Though Less Human’: A Poetics of Nonbinary U(n)topias

Dr. Lamar Wilson
Tu/Th, 1:20PM-2:35PM, WMS 110

Two decades before she published her polemic indictment of slavery “The Battle of the Republic” in The Atlantic, Julia Ward Howe crafted an incomplete tale of an intersex person—“one presenting a beautiful physical development, and combining in the spiritual nature all that is most attractive in either sex” who would be “the poetic dream of the ancient sculptor, more beautiful, though less human, than either man or woman”—that remained lost in the archive until scholar Gary Williams curated its fragments as Laurence manuscript/The Hermaphrodite (U of Nebraska P, 2004). Using Ward’s fraught utopic vision as a palimpsest, this course will mine a host of genres, alongside formative scholarly interventions in gender studies by Hortense J. Spillers, Judith Butler, José Esteban Muñoz, Siobhan Somerville, Aliyyah Abdur-Rahman, C. Riley Snorton, Cameron Awkward-Rich, Marquis Bey, and Roger Reeves, from the last 150 years in search of new insights on the fictions about the binaries that bind—and divide—our own contentious moment, one not unlike Ward’s. In addition to her manuscript, we’ll choose six to eight works among canonical texts such as Ellen and William Craft’s Running a Thousand Miles to Freedom, Sidney Drew’s A Florida Enchantment, T.S. Eliot’s The Waste Land, Jean Toomer’s Cane, Sherwood Anderson’s “The Man Who Became a Woman,” Djuana Barnes’s Nightwood, Virginia Prince’s Transvestia, Ed Wood’s Glen or Glenda, Pauli Murray’s Dark Testament, Miguel Piñero’s Short Eyes, and Jennie Livingston’s Paris Is Burning and more recent standouts such as Tarell Alvin McRaney’s Wig Out!, Awkward-Rich’s Dispatch, Jenny Johnson’s In Full Velvet, torrin a. greathouse’s Wound from the Mouth of a Wound, and the blockbuster phenomenon Everything Everywhere All at Once.

Students must email Dr. Wilson affirming their interest and investment in the sensitive matters in this course before enrollment.

  • Running a Thousand Miles to Freedom (1860), Ellen and William Craft, alongside Ilyon Woo’s new Master Slave Husband Wife (Simon & Schuster, 2023)
  • The Waste Land, T.S. Eliot (Boni & Liveright, 1922)
  • Cane, Jean Toomer (Liveright/W.W. Norton, 1923/2011), alongside excerpts from Brother Mine: The Correspondence of Jean Toomer and Waldo Frank, Kathleen Pfeiffer (U of Illinois P, 2010)
  • “The Man Who Became a Woman,” Sherwood Anderson (Horses and Men, Huebsh, 1923)
  • Nightwood, Djuana Barnes (Faber & Faber/New Directions, 1936)
  • Excerpts from Transvestia, Virginia Prince (1952, 1960 issues)
  • Glen or Glenda, Ed Wood (1953)
  • Dark Testament, Pauli Murray (Liveright/W.W. Norton, 1970/2018), w/this 2021 documentary
  • Not Vanishing, Chrystos (Press Gang P, 1988, on reserve at Strozier)
  • Paris Is Burning (1990)
  • Boys Don’t Cry, Kimberly Peirce (1999)
  • Wig Out!, Tarell Alvin McRaney (Faber & Faber, 2008)
  • Dispatch, Cameron Awkward-Rich (2017, Persea)
  • Una Mujer Fantástica, Sebastian Lelio (2017)
  • In Full Velvet, Jenny Johnson (2017)
  • Wound from the Mouth of a Wound, torrin a. greathouse (Milkweed, 2020)
  • Everything Everywhere All at Once (2022)

ENG 4020.001

Rhetorical Theory and Practice: Rhetoric and Human Rights

Tarez Samra Graban
Tu/Th, 1:20PM-2:35PM, WMS 217

This course invites students to read, analyze, write about, and reconstruct cross-cultural spectacles and human rights events. Organized around a series of case studies, the course asks students to take a critical rhetorical approach to exploring a variety of modes and forms—including hypertext essays, trauma narratives, testimonials, archives, memorials, a graphic novel, and film—gaining insight into how individuals, groups, and nations enact their human-rights interests from both local and global points of view. Case studies will be wide-ranging and may include past and present activism; vibrant cultural heritage projects, such as Kantha Threads (Bangladesh) and Art Against Apartheid (South Africa); and Truth and Reconciliation Commissions, to name only a few. Above all, the class will expose us to the notions of rhetorical empathy, deep listening, and critical compassion. Together, we will ask and answer the following questions: How can we interpret cross-cultural spectacles and human rights events when they occur in such a wide range of modalities (e.g., written, oral, visual, gestural, spatial, multimodal)? How can we be, do, or live differently after witnessing these spectacles—especially if they relate to cultures and crises that are not our own? How can we think critically about human rights discourse while we are also participating with this discourse in the real world? Finally, what kinds of rhetorical performances, practices, and frameworks become possible—both realistically and imaginatively—as a result of our study?

ENG 4043.001

Contemporary Critical Theory: Blues and Jazz

Christopher Okonkwo
Tu/Th, 11:35AM-12:50PM, WMS 318

In their significations as music, experience, and vernacular ways of contemplating beauty in works of imagination, blues and jazz have deep roots in African American history and culture, although their instrumentation, content, and form track back to Africa and Europe. Their influences have remained global. For decades, especially since the New Negro Movement or Harlem Renaissance, African American thinkers and cultural workers have tapped into the two intertwined cultural forms. In this course, we will explore blues and jazz in African American literature and culture. In addition to charting the histories of both genres and sampling blues and jazz music proper, our main goal will be to consider the depth to which blues and jazz registers can help us illuminate African American poetry, short stories, novels, and plays. We will discuss select works by critically acclaimed African American writers, including James Weldon Johnson, Langston Hughes, Richard Wright, Ralph Ellison, James Baldwin, Jane Cortez, Gayl Jones, August Wilson, and Toni Morrison. The poems and short stories will be uploaded on the course Canvas site. This promises to be one the best, indeed one of the most enriching, classes you will take in fall semester! 

ENG 4043.002

Contemporary Critical Theory: Humanism, and Everything Else

Dr. Rebecca Evans
M/W, 3:05PM-4:20PM WMS 317

This course will approach contemporary developments in theory through a thematic focus on individualism: its complexities, constructions, and contradictions. We may assume that the human individual is the fundamental unit of action, meaning, and power. After all, individual being is certainly how we usually experience our own lives and choices. In the contemporary moment, however, critical theory has complicated this picture in various ways—exploring, for instance, how individuals are shaped by institutions and ideologies; how subjectivity and consciousness are messier than we think; how human individuals exist in permeable, symbiotic relation to nonhuman others; and how our very conception of “the individual” is historically and culturally conditioned, not inevitable or universal. In this course, we will read foundational twentieth-century critical theorists including Michel Foucault, Fredric Jameson, Gilles Deleuze and Félix Guattari, Donna Haraway, and Sylvia Wynter, trace how their investigations of individualism continue to shape twenty-first century literary and cultural criticism, and turn to contemporary fiction to understand how literary writers have taken up linked questions and concerns. By the end of the semester, students will have developed a keener appreciation for how theory speaks to their lives—and, conversely, how complex theoretical debates unfold in literary and other popular spaces.

ENG 4115.001

Film Theory: Hitchcock: Allegories for Seeing (Cinematically)

C. Parker-Flynn
TU/TH, 11:35AM-12:50PM, WMS 121B

In this course, we will approach film theory organically through an examination of Alfred Hitchcock’s body of work as a film director. Indeed, French film critics of the 1950s encouraged a re-evaluation of film—and thus a re-invention of film theory itself—based on the belief that a director’s films reflect his/her individual artistry. Hitchcock was one of their primary and strongest prototypes of director as auteur, or author, who wields what they would designate as the “camera-pen.” Hitchcock’s body of work has since attracted substantial attention by film criticism, and his films have been analyzed through a variety of theoretical approaches, including structural, psychoanalytic, and feminist.

We will read film theory (Eisenstein, Bazin, Metz, Heath, Bellour, Doane, Mulvey, Modelski) and address the complex historico-theoretical relation between film theory and cinema with a particular focus on Hitchcock. We will further consider Hitchcock’s films as instruments that allow for the displacement of anxiety and the dispossession of socially unacceptable desires, fears, and traumatic memories. Film study will be comprised of both theoretical and mechanical elements; students will attend to structural elements such as cinematography, mise-en-scène, and sound.

Films for study will include: The Lodger, Rebecca, Suspicion, Shadow of a Doubt, Rope, Rear Window, Vertigo, Psycho, and The Birds.

Requirements: This course satisfies the requirement for coursework in Understanding Genres.

ENG 4115.002

Film Theory: Hitchcock: Allegories for Seeing (Cinematically)

C. Parker-Flynn
TU/TH, 1:20PM-2:35PM, WMS 121B

In this course, we will approach film theory organically through an examination of Alfred Hitchcock’s body of work as a film director. Indeed, French film critics of the 1950s encouraged a re-evaluation of film—and thus a re-invention of film theory itself—based on the belief that a director’s films reflect his/her individual artistry. Hitchcock was one of their primary and strongest prototypes of director as auteur, or author, who wields what they would designate as the “camera-pen.” Hitchcock’s body of work has since attracted substantial attention by film criticism, and his films have been analyzed through a variety of theoretical approaches, including structural, psychoanalytic, and feminist.

We will read film theory (Eisenstein, Bazin, Metz, Heath, Bellour, Doane, Mulvey, Modelski) and address the complex historico-theoretical relation between film theory and cinema with a particular focus on Hitchcock. We will further consider Hitchcock’s films as instruments that allow for the displacement of anxiety and the dispossession of socially unacceptable desires, fears, and traumatic memories. Film study will be comprised of both theoretical and mechanical elements; students will attend to structural elements such as cinematography, mise-en-scène, and sound.

Films for study will include: The Lodger, Rebecca, Suspicion, Shadow of a Doubt, Rope, Rear Window, Vertigo, Psycho, and The Birds.

Requirements: This course satisfies the requirement for coursework in Understanding Genres.

ENG 4615.001

Media Theory and Practice: Podcasting: Art of Persuasion

Ronisha Browdy
Tu/Th, 9:45AM-11:00AM, WMS 317

This course offers a theoretical and practical approach to the digital world of podcasting. Students will use rhetorical theory and concepts to think critically about podcasts as a growing genre of user-generated content, a personal/political/social digital platform, a source of news and entertainment, marketing/branding, etc. Students will then use this theorization of podcasts to inform their development, workshopping, and publishing of their own podcast. At the conclusion of this course, students will have had opportunities to do the following: 1) think critically about podcasts as a rhetorical genre, 2) consider their own ethics, perspectives, and positions of power as consumers and producers of podcasts, and 3) develop, write, record, edit, and publish their own podcast.

ENG 4815.001

What is a Text?: New Materialisms and Indigenous Textuality

Fleckenstein
Tu/Th, 1:20PM-2:35PM, WMS 317

Almost 60 years ago, Marshall McLuhan in Understanding Media (1964), broke with the traditional disciplinary focus on the alphabetic communication to assert that the “medium”—rather than the medium’s “content”—is the “the message,” that media, in their various guises, carry the predominant communicative value. Thus, the physicality of the radio, the television, and the film experience all constitute a message—a meaning—in and of themselves which we, consciously and unconsciously, shape and by which we, consciously and unconsciously, are shaped. In other words, media are texts.

Here, in 2023, using the lens provided by new materialisms and its critics, we return to McLuhan’s assertion and examine it anew in a radically different era. Together, we explore the nature of what we might call media textuality and its implications for our professional and personal lives. More specifically, we focus on everyday material objects, such as pencils, tables, screw drivers, and smart phones, and ask how they exist as texts—even rhetorical texts—with meaning and agency, advocating for a particular version of realit(ies). In the process, we expand our understanding of medium, reading, writing, and living.

Grades will be based on the following:

  • two “case studies,” in which you create and theorize an object using, first, the lens provided by new materialisms, and, second, the lens provided by indigenous (non-western) epistemologies;
  • a group “text” presentation and discussion related to our readings;
  • one essay exam (focused on our readings/discussions);
  • a final reflective essay exploring the “professional” implications of media textuality for your professional lives.

ENG 4815.002

What is a Text: Film and Text

Dr. Leigh Edwards
ONLINE, ASYNCHRONOUS

This course for the EWM track investigates theories of textuality, which refers to how "texts" make meaning by being understood in context. We will test out key theories by discussing some vibrant films as case studies. Our reading includes theories of textuality as well as relevant film theory. While we explore different ideas about what counts as a "text" and where the meaning of a text resides, we will assess debates about the relationship between the text and vital contexts. These contexts include the socio-historical context, audience reception, and the "paratext," which refers to associated material surrounding the text but that is separate from the text itself. In addition to theoretical debates about how to define "text" and "textuality," we will study theories of paratextuality, intertextuality, adaptation, interactive textuality, and remediation. We will consider, for example, films that have been adapted from literature and how to unpack the meanings of different kinds of texts as well as what contexts can influence our reading of them, from associated material like a film trailer to theories of how fans interact with films to larger discourses like the cultural expectations of different mediums and genres. Assignments include frequent Canvas discussion posts, two shorter essays, and the longer final essay. In a final project involving both theory and practice, students will get the chance to produce their own multimedia text and to analyze how their own work engages issues of textuality.

ENG 4815.003

What is a Text?: New Materialisms and Indigenous Textuality

Fleckenstein
Tu/Th, 3:05PM-4:20PM, WMS 317

Almost 60 years ago, Marshall McLuhan in Understanding Media (1964), broke with the traditional disciplinary focus on the alphabetic communication to assert that the “medium”—rather than the medium’s “content”—is the “the message,” that media, in their various guises, carry the predominant communicative value. Thus, the physicality of the radio, the television, and the film experience all constitute a message—a meaning—in and of themselves which we, consciously and unconsciously, shape and by which we, consciously and unconsciously, are shaped. In other words, media are texts.

Here, in 2023, using the lens provided by new materialisms and its critics, we return to McLuhan’s assertion and examine it anew in a radically different era. Together, we explore the nature of what we might call media textuality and its implications for our professional and personal lives. More specifically, we focus on everyday material objects, such as pencils, tables, screw drivers, and smart phones, and ask how they exist as texts—even rhetorical texts—with meaning and agency, advocating for a particular version of realit(ies). In the process, we expand our understanding of medium, reading, writing, and living.

Grades will be based on the following:

  • two “case studies,” in which you create and theorize an object using, first, the lens provided by new materialisms, and, second, the lens provided by indigenous (non-western) epistemologies;
  • a group “text” presentation and discussion related to our readings;
  • one essay exam (focused on our readings/discussions);
  • a final reflective essay exploring the “professional” implications of media textuality for your professional lives.

ENG 4815.004

What is A Text? Cross-Cultural Spectacles and Human Rights Events

Tarez Samra Graban
Tu/Th, 11:35AM-12:50PM, WMS 217

Building on what you have learned in HoTT, WEPO, and Rhetoric (among other courses), ENG 4815 is an investigation into the nature of textuality and its relationship to various media and technologies. For the purposes of this class, we will assume that the experience of texts is not reducible to mere forms or phenomena -- i.e., books, words, media, screens, structures, symbols, or codes -- but is actually a "coming-into-being" of a combination of institutions, principles, and ideas that need to be actively explored. The course's guiding question, then, is, How do texts come to mean what they do?

In this particular section of the course, we will extend that question to the production and reception of cross-cultural spectacles and human rights events in a variety of modes and forms -- including essays, archives, memorials, community discourses, graphic novels, and bodies. Rather than approach these modes as "things" or "objects," we will treat them as opportunities for exploring questions about individuals, nations, and discourses from both local and global points of view.

ENG 4834.001

Issues in Publishing: Literary Magazine

Weise
M/W, 3:05PM-6:05PM WMS 111

Here is the situation: you have written something and you would like to submit it for publication. How do you know where to send your work? What is the scene for literary magazines? This course will teach you how to identify a magazine’s ethos, style, reach, credibility and relevance to your writing. You will read a variety of literary magazines – from scrappy upstarts to legacy publications – and discover how your singular point-of-view belongs in the broader literary landscape.

ENG 4934.001

Senior Seminar in Literature: Reading Ulysses (through Homer and Matisse)

Stanley Gontarski
Tu/Th, 3:05PM-4:20PM, WMS 415

What makes an English major, or rather, a literature major? Let me suggest that English majors relish the opportunities to read, to study, to plunge into the depths of, to get lost in, and, finally, to enjoy the acknowledged greatest literary works of all time. James Joyce’s Ulysses of 1922 is just such a book. In this Senior Seminar we will spend the semester reading and studying James Joyce’s great novel, always ranked high, frequently number 1, on lists of the greatest works of literature—ever (see below). ENG 4934 will read Ulysses closely, against its sources, especially Homer’s The Odyssey, and even look at some of its visual interpretations, especially the illustrations by Henri Matisse. Last year saw innumerable celebrations of the Ulysses centenary with new, annotated additions and a wealth of fresh criticism. We will take as much advantage as we can of such new resources. On most lists of the 100 greatest novels of all time, James Joyce ranks very high, #s 1 & 3 on the Modern Library List. Ask yourselves, How many of these have I read? This is your chance to say, “Yes,” to #1. thegreatestbooks.org/lists/2

ENG 4938.001

ADV STUD IN ENGLISH: “Journeys in Women’s Literature”

Caputi
Tu/Th, 3:05pm-4:20pm, WMS 201

This course is premised on the notion of travel and mobility as feminist issues. From Chaucer's Wife of Bath onward, women who "get around" have been viewed with fascination and loathing by masculinist-xenophobic ideologues, and women’s mobility (when not enforced by "the traffic in women"--as wives or as slaves) has been stigmatized, eroticized, exoticized, and demonized. At the same time, having the means to travel—and the intellectual and spiritual freedom travel proffers—can be celebrated as marks of female empowerment within a given culture. In this course, we will study works in a variety of genres by and about women who transgress social and geo-political boundaries, whether by actual travel through real space or by occupying multiple cultural/ethnic (and sometimes sexual) identities. Prospective readings include but are not limited to Virginia Woolf’s Orlando, Toni Morrison’s Beloved, Gloria Anzaldúa’s Borderlands/ La Frontera, Marjane Satrapi’s graphic memoir Persepolis and Cheryl Strayed's best-seller, Wild.

Topic: A reading-intensive study of works in a variety of genres by and about women who transgress social and geo-political boundaries.

Be advised that this course is note only READING INTENSIVE but follows a strict NO KINDLE POLICY. Required text-books are to be purchased in BOOK FORMAT ONLY.

This course fulfills the “W” requirement and the diversity requirement.

ENL 3334.002

Introduction to Shakespeare

Chiyon Yu
M/W/F, 10:30AM-11:30AM, WMS 002

This class is designed to increase your enjoyment and understanding of Shakespeare’s work through a close reading of the texts in relation to their social and historical settings of the Renaissance or the early modern period in England. Throughout the semester, we will cover four dramatic genres of Shakespeare’s texts and his poems including sonnets. In addition to Shakespeare’s texts, we will watch modern renditions of his work on stage and screen. With these materials in different media, we will also discuss how a text could be transmediated throughout different media.

This class will be based on class discussions, so students are expected to read assigned texts before coming to class and participate in class discussions. Throughout the semester, students will be required to write weekly response papers, a close reading essay, and a final research paper.

This class satisfies the requirement for coursework in Pre-1800 distribution.

ENL 4122.001

19th Century British Novel: The Marriage Plot and Its Discontents

Diane Roberts
Tu/Th, 11:35AM-12:50PM, WMS 121

“Reader, I married him,” says Jane Eyre, somewhat ambivalently, at the end of Charlotte Bronte’s 1847 bestseller. Novels of the 19th century usually end with the heroine getting hitched to the appropriate man after hundreds of pages of suffering and striving. But is a wedding really the inevitable—or desired--outcome? Do some writers resist? This course looks at Jane Austen, the Bronte sisters, Charles Dickens, George Eliot and others to examine how what may appear to be tidy drawing rooms and formal rose gardens are really sites of resistance.

This course fulfills 3 hours of the LMC requirement for genre and courses at the 4000 level.

ENL 4218.001

Middle English Romance: Histories and Fables: the Legends of Arthur

David F. Johnson
Tu/Th, 9:45AM-11:000AM WMS 201

This course aims to explore some of the broader historical, narrative, poetic, and thematic contexts at work in the literature of the European Middle Ages by examining as a case study the varied and voluminous body of texts surrounding King Arthur. We will begin with the earliest chronicle accounts of his deeds and move through Geoffrey of Monmouth's influential History of the Kings of Britain before spending a considerable amount of time in the chivalric romance tradition, as established by Chrétien de Troyes and Marie de France, that flourished in French-speaking locales soon after. The Holy Grail and related issues of spirituality and sexuality will come into focus halfway through, and we will close out the semester by dwelling on the particular English treatment of the legend that came about in the later Middle Ages with so-called minstrel romances, the masterful Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, and the English Death of Arthur tradition.

ENL 4311.001

Chaucer: Canterbury Tales

Jamie Fumo
M/W, 1:20PM-2:35PM, WMS 319

In this course, we will closely examine Chaucer's unfinished and highly experimental masterpiece, the Canterbury Tales, in the original Middle English. We will read as many of the Tales as possible, becoming literate in a wide range of medieval literary forms -- courtly romance, beast fable, saint's life, and bawdy comedy, as well as some that defy classification. In addition, we will become closely acquainted with Chaucer's language, the dynamic of tradition and innovation, and the dramatic relationship between tale and teller. Some questions we will puzzle over: Why does Chaucer emerge as such an instrumental figure in the development of English literature? And how "medieval" (or "modern," or even "postmodern") are Chaucer's accomplishments and values as a fourteenth-century poet in a time of cultural transition?

All Chaucer readings will be in the original Middle English. No prior experience with Middle English is necessary, though learning it is a formal expectation of the course. Reading Chaucer in Middle English, aloud as well as silently, is tremendous fun, but it requires commitment and steady effort; good study habits and a healthy sense of intellectual curiosity are vital for success in this course. Assignments tentatively include regular quizzes, a Middle English recitation exercise, informed class participation, a series of linked written exercises culminating in an original research project, and a final exam.

This course meets the pre-1800 requirement for LMC majors.

Specific textbook to be used (physical book required; no substitutions):

Geoffrey Chaucer, The Canterbury Tales (Original-Spelling Middle English Edition), ed. Jill Mann. Penguin, 2005. ISBN 978-0-140-42234-4

IDS 3457.001

Medieval Literature and Film: The Reel Middle Ages

David F. Johnson
Tu/Th, 11:35AM-12:50PM WMS 201

L.P. Hartley’s 1953 novel The Go-Between famously opens with the sentence, “The past is a foreign country: they do things differently there.” To what extent is this true? One of the chief aims of this course will be to explore whether this is a view shared by those who produced filmic versions of medieval literature in the 20thand 21st centuries. This is a course about adaptation, medievalism and the “Reel Middle Ages.” We will examine a body of medieval texts in their literary and cultural contexts, analyzing their reception and re-interpretation through the contemporary medium of film. We will learn about the theory and practice of film adaptation in general, and the transformation of medieval texts to film in particular. The complexity of our modern period’s medieval heritage requires much effort on our part to appreciate. This course attempts to facilitate a deeper appreciation and understanding of 20th and 21st century medievalism in one of our most influential media. The course is divided into three units, the first of which consists of an introduction to adaptation studies and adaptation theory, as well as medievalism and the medieval imaginary. The rest of that first unit and the remaining two units will each be devoted to a particular topic of filmic medievalism: the Old English epic poem Beowulf, the legends of King Arthur, and Robin Hood. We will be reading primary texts on those topics and watching one relevant adaptation each week.

LIT 2000.001

Introduction to Literature

Bronson Mahrt
M/W, 3:05PM-4:20PM, DIF 230

This course introduces students to key terminology, concepts, and methodologies for the study of complex literature. The course provides a groundwork in literary types for non-majors and is also strongly recommended as preparation for upper-level (3000- or 4000-level) coursework in the field.

LIT 2000.003

Introduction to Literature: Inner & Outer Worlds

Natalie Tombasco
Th/Th, 9:45AM-11:00AM, WMS 108

This survey will explore narratives that respond to places, whether they be physical settings such as suburban sprawl and post-apocalyptic cities, or in the realm of internal landscapes that are rooted in memory or the imagination. In doing so, we will delve into various forms of prose and poetry, as well as experiment with creative writing as a method in which to digest important storytelling techniques.

This course introduces students to key terminology, concepts, and methodologies for the study of complex literature. The course provides a groundwork in literary types for non-majors and is also strongly recommended as preparation for upper-level (3000- or 4000-level) coursework in the field.

LIT 2000.004

Introduction to Literature: Reading Across Genres

Laura Smith
M/W/F, 10:40AM-11:30AM, WMS 204

This course aims to introduce students to the reading, analysis, critical thinking, and writing skills that will prepare them for further literary study (academic or otherwise). We will organize our course around learning to analyze and develop arguments about different literary forms including short stories, drama, poetry, graphic novels, novels, and films. The course will also cover the basics of theoretical concepts critical to literary study.

LIT 2010.001

Introduction to Fiction: Short Stories and Novels

Li Zhuang
Tu/Th, 4:50PM-6:05PM WMS 121

Introduction to Fiction (novels and short stories) provides an introduction to the central concepts and techniques writers commonly used in fiction writing. Through reading and analyzing novels and short stories of different narrative styles, cultural backgrounds, time periods, students will be well-versed in the fundamental elements of fiction, such as plot, setting, dialogue, voice, dramtic conflicts, characterization, and point of view, symbolism, imagery etc. They will also be encouraged to examine different ways writers use these elements to craft their narratives and build their fictive worlds. Along the way, students will also be introduced to different literary movements and styles, such as feminist movement, psychoanalysis, modernism, and postmodernism.

LIT 2010.002

Introduction to Fiction: Criminal Novels: Case Studies

Mason Boyles
M/W, 3:05PM-4:20PM

This course will examine the craft of fiction using case studies of three novels that represent a "Venn diagram" of sub-genres: cyberpunk (Neuromancer), dystopian crime (The City of Bohane), and postmodern noir (Night Boat to Tangier). We will spend five weeks on each of these books, examining their respective story mechanics (acute tension, chronic tension, collision, plot, escalation, stakes, setting, mood, direct characterization, indirect characterization, POV, voice, dramatic and thematic questions). Every other Sunday you'll submit a reading journal discussing your observations. At the end of it all, you'll write a 2,000-word craft essay on a novel of your choosing.

LIT 2030.002

Intro to Poetry: Finding & Loosing the Self

Aimee Seu
M/W/F, 1:20PM- 2:10PM, WMS 121

Diane Seuss’ poem Eclipse begins “The moon is losing / herself.” By looking at both traditional and contemporary poets we will divine ways to find, lose and loose ourselves. The class will require rigorous amounts of reading and the close study of individual poems. We will be conducting rounds of workshop where students turn in their own work and respond to one another’s. The class is largely discussion based. It doesn’t matter if you’ve ever read poetry before as long as you arrive willing to be, yourself, shattered by line break and transformed by metaphor. Rumi, writing in 1200 BC wrote “Out beyond ideas of wrongdoing and rightdoing, / there is a field. I’ll meet you there. // When the soul lies down in that grass, / the world is too full to talk about. / Ideas, language, even the phrase ‘each other’ / doesn’t make any sense.” About 600 years later Whitman wrote that grass is the “uncut hair of graves, […] The smallest sprout shows there is really no death, / And if ever there was it led forward life, and does not wait at the end to arrest it.” We will be seeking to lie down in the grassy fields of the vast unknown.

LIT 2081.001

Contemporary Literature: Modern Myths and Fairytale

So Young Koo
M/W/F, 10:40AM-11:30AM, WMS 317

Myths and fairytales have played a foundational role in the development of cultural identity. Thus, understanding them is essential to understanding various cultures. This course explores the ways in which modern writers have adapted and transformed traditional myths and fairytales to reflect contemporary themes and issues. Through readings of a variety of texts from different genres and cultures, students will develop an understanding of how myths and fairytales continue to resonate in modern society.

Throughout the course, we will examine the ways in which traditional myths and fairytales have been reinvented and updated to reflect the concerns of the modern world. We will also analyze the social and cultural contexts in which these adaptations were produced and consider the ways in which they have been received by contemporary audiences.

Some of the key topics that will be explored include the use of fairytales to explore issues of gender, race, and identity; the incorporation of modern technology and media into mythic narratives; and the relationship between myth and popular culture.

By the end of the course, students will have gained a deeper understanding of the ongoing significance of myths and fairytales in contemporary culture and will be able to analyze and interpret modern adaptations of these stories. They will also develop critical thinking and writing skills through engagement with complex literary texts.

LIT 2081.002

Contemporary Literature: Of the Age: Modern Shakespeare

Kirsten Wimberg
Tu/Th, 8:00AM-9:15AM, WMS 317

This course looks at modern adaptations of two of Shakespeare's major works, Hamlet and The Tempest, and how canonical texts inspire new works. This course interrogates the cultural currency of Shakespeare in contemporary literature - what themes survive? What stories are we still interested in telling, and why? How do contemporary events affect the stories we want to tell and how we tell them? No prior knowledge of Shakespeare required, our focus remains on texts from WWI onwards.

LIT 3024.003

Perspectives on the Short Story: “a biopsy on the human condition”

KT
M/W/F, 9:20AM-10:10AM, WMS 121B

LIT 3024 is for aspiring writers and critics of the short story. Students need not have a robust background in reading or writing short stories—rather a healthy curiosity is highly encouraged. This course serves as an introduction to reading and understanding short stories. We will be considering the formal elements of short stories like tone, narration, form, theme, and characterization, as well as the thematic and cultural importance of the short stories we read. We’ll read each text with 3 main goals: 1) to experience the text and the emotions, problems, states, and ideas the text embodies, 2) to understand a text’s cultural significance, and 3) to explore the forms, speakers, structures, and other craft elements of the text to better accomplish goals one and two. That is, we want to experience and discuss what the text might say about what it means to be a human being. An examination of any theme in a short story is not just a literary investigation, but also an examination of human nature. Concepts such as characterization, setting, symbolism, and so forth will be the foundation from which we will explore. This course will revolve around decoding meaning from the latent and manifest content of literary works and connect that analysis to larger issues particular to the works’ historical and modern contexts.

LIT 3024.005

Perspectives on the Short Story

Tommy P. Cowan
Tu/Th, 4:50PM-6:05PM, WMS 319

This course will give an overview of the short story genre by focusing on the elements that compose a short story like form, voice, plot, conflict, and so on, in addition to giving a historical perspective on the short story as a development from oral history. We will discuss connections with politics, culture, and other topics. The first half of the course will focus on teaching students the historical contexts of short stories as emergent from myth and folklore, and the second half will attempt to identify elements like tone, character, narration, theme, and other formal aspects. Students will formulate their own interpretations based on the recognition of authorial processes. While the second half of the course will focus primarily on American short stories, the first half will have a heavy emphasis on how older forms of stories like myths are orally preserved and eventually become literature. This class will require discussions, presentations, and close reading in addition to the writing activities.

This course meets the distribution requirement for Genre Courses.

LIT 3024.006

Perspectives on the Short Story

C.E. Reynolds
M/W, 4:50PM-6:05PM, WMS 108

This course introduces students to the critical reading of American short stories dating from the nineteenth into the twenty-first centuries. Students will learn to identify craft aspects such as narration, characterization, form, theme, tone, and other elements of short fiction. Through class discussions and written analogy, students are encouraged to recognize the decisions each author has made in constructing the text.

LIT 3112.001

Understanding Literary History I: Literature in English from the 7th – 18th Centuries

Dr. Carla Della Gatta
M/W, 3:05PM-4:20PM, WMS 121B

LIT 3112 is a core course for the Literature major, and as such, it provides an essential, foundational survey of literary-historical materials. This course introduces literature in multiple genres (poetry, prose, and drama) composed in English, from roughly the 7th century CE (the date of the oldest extant poem in Old English, “Caedmon's Hymn”) to 1798 (the date of the literary manifesto in the Preface to Wordsworth and Coleridge's Lyrical Ballads). Focusing on genre, form, technique, and socio-historical and aesthetic contexts (including transnational contexts), the course presents both a broad, “big picture” view of earlier English literary history, and a “close reading” view of particular authors and works. The predominant instructional activity will be discussion; assessments will also be based on what is learned in discussion.

Requirements

Core Course

LIT 3124.001

Understanding Literary History II

Aaron Rodriguez
Tu/Th, 1:20PM-2:35PM, DIF 236

This course is a survey of literature from the 19th through the late 20th centuries. Special emphasis is given to close reading skills and to discussions of the overarching social and historical movements surrounding the assigned works.

LIT 3124.001

Understanding Literary History II

Barry J. Faulk
M/W, 4:50PM-6:05PM, WMS 319

This class is a survey of literature written in English from the turn of the nineteenth century and fulfills an LMC Gateway/core requirement.

We will study issues in modern literary history using the lens of Genre Theory. Our course reading includes fantasy/horror tales by H.P. Lovecraft, Arthur Machen, and Shirley Jackson, “hard boiled” detective fiction including Dashiell Hammett’s The Maltese Falcon and Dorothy B. Hughes’ In a Lonely Place, as well as recent novels about AI and time travel (Kazuo Ishiguro’s Klara and the Sun, Emily St. John Mandel’s Sea of Tranquility) that blur the line between science fiction and what was once called “prestige” literature.

LIT 3313.001

Science Fiction

Alison Sperling
Tu/Th, 11:35AM-12:50PM, WMS 114

This course reads contemporary (mostly American) science and speculative fictions in literature and the arts alongside queer theory. We will examine key concepts to queer, feminist, and transgender theory that are explored and reimagined in SF, like sexuality, kinship, family, reproduction, friendship, gender roles, biology, technology, desire, nature, belonging, temporality, and futurity. The course will include novels, short stories, poetry, comics/graphic novellas, the visual and performing arts, music, television, and film, and will include authors like Ursula K. Le Guin, Octavia E. Butler, Samuel R.Delany, Caitlin Kiernan, Rivers Solomon, and Larissa Lai.

Meets distribution elective requirement, “Understanding Genres”, post-1900 American, and Diversity

LIT 3313.003

Science Fiction: Science Fiction and Social Worlds

Dr. Rebecca Evans
M/W, 6:35PM-7:50PM WMS 319

This course will consider the relationship between the otherwise worlds that science fiction imagines and the social worlds from which science fiction emerges. We’ll explore the diversity of the science fiction genre across the twentieth and twenty-first centuries, working across forms (including fiction, film, television, and visual media) as well as sociocultural contexts while focusing most (though not all!) of our attention on North American texts. As we do so, we will seek to understand how works of science fiction speak back to and intervene in key issues of their moment and our own. We’ll take a comparative approach to some of science fiction’s major themes and abiding preoccupations—aliens, empire, technology, apocalypse—asking questions such as: How do the fantasies and fears of science fiction shift over time and look different from different perspectives? How does science fiction reflect, refract, and resist structures of power, including and especially those related to identity and embodiment? How can science fiction reshape our sense of social possibilities and help us to imagine new futures? Students can expect to read broadly as well as deeply, to reflect on their own values and assumptions, and to engage both critically and creatively with the core science fictional practice of speculation.

LIT 3383.001

Women in Literature: Women’s Agency and Empowerment from the 19th Century to the Present

Laura Biagi
Tu/Th, 4:50PM-6:05PM, WMS 317

This class is concerned with how conceptions of women’s agency and empowerment have evolved in literature over time. The 19th century saw the emergence of romantic love as a powerful metaphor for idealized happiness between couples and an avenue toward women’s self-realization, agency, and empowerment—and yet we have been challenging this “happily ever after” metaphor ever since. How does romantic love offer empowering opportunities for women, and how does it oppress women by reinscribing dominant, patriarchal systems of power? In what ways do sexuality and pleasure counteract oppression, and in what ways can they be co-opted by it? How do women’s friendships and partnerships, their families, and their participation in motherhood, interact with their agency? And what does it look like when women seize power for themselves? How are race and class embedded throughout these questions as novels explore the dominant systems of power oppressing women’s lives? We will start by reading Jane Eyre as a foregrounding text, situating it in its historical context and its implications for women’s agency in the 19th century. Then we will move on to its 1966 postcolonial, feminist critique, Wide Sargasso Sea. We will continue to explore the themes of women’s oppression and empowerment in the contemporary literary landscape with Beloved by Toni Morrison, The Vegetarian by Han Kang, Matrix by Lauren Groff, and The Power by Naomi Alderman.  

 

LIT 3383.002

Women in Literature: Gender, Sexuality, Race, Ecology, and Intersectionality

Chris Watkins
Tu/Th, 11:35AM-12:50PM, DIF 236

This course offers an opportunity to study women’s writing, wxmen’s writing, as well as the writing of gender nonconforming authors and poets. From femme to butch, genderfuck, and beyond, our reading will focus on modern and contemporary writers while grounding us in the long traditions of poets and authors such as Sappho, Chiyoni, Hannah Crafts, Emily Dickinson, and more. The books we will study range from the works of Gwendolyn Brooks and Toni Morrison to Audre Lorde’s essays, Robin Wall Kimmerer’s environmental writing, torrin greathouse’s poetry, and Maia Kobabe’s graphic novel memoir. We will use as our focus for the class Lorde’s essay “The Master’s Tools Will Never Dismantle the Master’s House.” Through this lens, students will be asked to contemplate intersectionality, and we will discuss what makes “women’s lit,” “wxman’s lit,” and/or writing beyond the binary.

*This course meets the distribution requirement for diversity*

LIT 3383.004

Women in Literature

Pablo Ramón-Rivera
M/W/F, 10:40AM-11:30AM, WMS 110

An examination of the representation of women in literature.

This course meets distribution requirements for diversity.

LIT 3383.005

Women in Literature: “Alien Superstars: Black Women in Speculative Fiction

Jannah Mitchell
Tu/Th, 6:35PM-7:50PM, WMS 319

This course will focus on Black Women within the speculative fiction genre. We will read and analyze a selection of novels and short stories for their contribution to speculative fiction while discussing how Black Women make space for themselves within the community of speculative fiction writers.

Course Texts:
Octavia Butler, Kindred
Jewell Gomez, The Gilda Stories
Nalo Hopinkson, Brown Girl in the Ring
Nnedi Okorafor, Binti
N.K. Jemisin, The Fifth Season

This course meets the diversity requirement for LMC majors and the Diversity in Western Experience (y) and Writing (w) requirements for Liberal Studies.

LIT 3524.001

LGBTQ Drama

Kirsten Wimberg
Tu/Th, 1:20PM-2:35PM, WMS 108

What is a LGBTQ play? What boundaries does LGBTQ drama seek? What stories and themes is it interested in and what is the relationship between dramatic literature and the LGBTQ community? This course moves through the history of LGBTQ Drama, particularly focused on American works, post-WWII through to new plays. This course is interested in the interplay between LGBTQ Drama and history, so we will also study relevant LGBTQ history, theory, and criticism to develop our understandings on what makes a play LGBTQ, where the genre has been, and where it is headed.

This course fulfills the diversity and genre requirements.

LIT 3622.001

Eco-Literature and Ecocriticism: Reading Cli-Fi in an Age of Ecological Crisis

Frances Tran
Tu/Th, 9:45AM-11:00AM, WMS 121B

In a contemporary moment that increasingly confronts us with the ecological consequences of global climate change, deforestation, pollution, and toxic drift, it is perhaps no surprise that a genre like climate fiction or “cli-fi” continues to gain public traction. Since it was coined in 2007 by American journalist Dan Bloom, the term cli-fi has been applied to a wide range of literature, film, and media that explore the effects of human activities on Earth’s ecosystems. This course offers an introduction to this growing body of work while also pressing us to examine the important texts and scholarship on environmentalism and ecocriticism that predate Bloom’s coining of the term and the genre’s accelerated growth in the 21st century. Reading across a wide range of mediums, including novels, short stories, poetry, film and comics, we will examine how various authors, artists, and activists respond to and narrate the effects of anthropogenic climate change. We will pay particular attention to texts that address how the ecological “crises” of the present are disproportionately distributed and experienced along varying lines of racial, class, gender, and geographic privilege. To supplement our discussions of the primary texts and cli-fi as a genre, we will engage scholarship in environmental humanities that supply us with critical vocabulary and theoretical frameworks around concepts like the Anthropocene, sustainability, posthumanism, and environmental justice.

LIT 4013.001

STUDIES IN THE NOVEL: MOBY-DICK & INVISIBLE MAN

John Mac Kilgore
Tu/Th, 1:20PM-2:35PM WMS 225

Here’s your chance to spend a semester with two of the most iconic novels + vast symbolic prose poems + philosophical essays + social critiques in the American tradition—Herman Melville’s Moby-Dick (1851) and Ralph Ellison’s Invisible Man (1952). Reading these two radical narrative epics (and their unforgettable narrators) face to face, this class will primarily explore Melville and Ellison’s different historical moments, highlighting how they each represent the politics of American culture and nationalism, white supremacy and racial capitalism, industrial labor and institutional power. We will also dig into source materials and learn about the artistic and intellectual contexts necessary to fully appreciate these two fictional masterpieces.

This course meets the “understanding genres” requirement

LIT 4205.001

Literature of Human Rights: American Exemptionalism

Jerrilyn McGregory
Tu/Th, 1:20PM-2:35PM WMS 002

American exemptionalism speaks to the U.S. supporting an international treaty as long as its citizens are exempt from a number of treaty provisions. Poverty has a devastating impact on basic human rights. This course does not intend to point fingers; instead, the assigned literary texts chiefly addresses the complexities of American behavior as relates to human rights. The course will undertake a genre approach that includes not only novels, but poetry, comic art, a play, and short stories. The texts chiefly reveal thought-provoking content negating a monolithic approach. Exemptionalism affects Women’s rights, children’s rights, health, and other inequalities. For our consideration, a vibrant civil society is generally considered to be essential for the protection of specific interest and concerns. The desire to counter formal inequality and discrimination is central to the moral DNA of human rights. We have fundamental human rights simply by virtue of being human: each individual’s claim to human rights pre-exists. However, many human rights violations occur precisely because individuals or communities have been targeted by others because of what distinguishes them from others. Sexual freedom has yet to be formally recognized as a fundamental human right. One of the vulnerable groups is children, who are compelled to live in a world not of their own making. Knowledge is power and, it provides a basis y which human rights violations may be accurately discerned and challenged.

LIT 4205.002

Literature of Human Rights

Trinyan Mariano
Tu/Th, 3:05PM-4:20PM WMS 121

The Literature of Human Rights is an interdisciplinary course addressing the foundational question of what it means to be “human” during the modern era, beginning in the 18th century and continuing into the present, when formal “rights” gave rise to a history of both violence and resistance, driven by acts of inclusion and exclusion from the category of the human. This course situates literature and media at the epicenter of this history, its forms, and its futures. We will study works by refugees, immigrants, incarcerated people, victims of war, and others who dramatize and theorize this epicenter, including authors such as Franz Fanon, Toni Morrison, Achilles Mbembe, Judith Butler, Louise Erdrich, Aleksander Hemon, Thanhha Lai, Salman Rushdie, Leslie Marmon Silko, Jean Genet, and Octavia Butler. Coursework includes extensive reading and engaged discussion, several short papers, a research project, and a presentation.,/p>

The course meets distribution requirements for diversity.

LIT 4385.001

Major Women Writers

Caputi
Tu/Th, 1:20PM-2:35PM, WMS 201

A reading-intensive (plan on a book a week) exploration of prominent women authors in the Anglo-American tradition, representing a diversity of cultural perspectives and working in a diversity of genres (to name just a few: Emily Dickinson, Virginia Woolf, Anne Sexton, Adrienne Rich, Audre Lorde, Toni Morrison and Sandra Cisneros). Requirements: weekly reading quizzes, two critical essays, class participation, 5-minute presentation, final exam. Be advised that this course follows a strict NO-KINDLE POLICY. Required text-books are to be purchased in BOOK FORMAT ONLY and portable electronic devices may not be used in the classroom unless required by an ADA accommodation.

This course fulfills the "W" requirement and the diversity requirement.

LIT 4385.002

Major Women Writers: Weird Fairy Tales

Diane Roberts
Tu/Th, 9:45AM-11:00AM, WMS 002

Ever since Enheduanna, a Mesopotamian princess and priestess of the Moon who lived and wrote 4500 years ago, women writers have used the supernatural and the mythic to express their power. The medieval abbess Marie de France slyly subverted courtly convention with her fairies and werewolves, Mary Shelley raised the dead in Frankenstein, the Brontes filled their novels with ghosts, and Eudora Welty populated Mississippi with fertility goddesses. We’ll explore how women use the magical in their work to subvert patriarchal expectations and claim a measure of freedom.

This course counts toward the diversity requirement.

LIT 4554.001

Feminist Theory

Robin Goodman
Tu/Th, 3:05PM-4:20PM, WMS 114

In 2016, a few days after Donald Trump’s inauguration, the streets in Washington D.C. erupted in the largest women’s march in history on the anniversary of the passage of the 1973 Supreme Court decision to legalize some abortion, Roe v. Wade. Women, men, and others marched on the nation’s capital in bright pink “pussy hats,” vowing allegiance to a movement that would oppose the anti-woman policies expected from the new administration. But days later, the movement began to fracture, with accusations of anti-Semitism, and four years later, Roe v. Wade would be overturned by the most racial- and gender- diverse but radically conservative court in U.S. history. This course is not about exploring this as a defeat. Opposition movements characteristically have power that is bracketed in timely enthusiasms and spontaneity, responding to current events and issues. Instead, this course will give definition to feminism’s evolving political concepts. The course’s goal is to offer an introductory guide to a range of concepts that, over time, have influenced feminist thinking on politics. From the body to sex, subjectivity, resistance, and reproductive economies, these concepts stretch across different registers and concerns while bringing into sharp focus world-historical events like imperialism, racial justice, the decline of the nuclear family, and the rise of sex-altering technologies. The concepts are not meant to dictate a feminist agenda around a dominant experience of being a “woman,” but rather to invoke terminology around which debates and conflicts have historically arisen over and again, in order to mark the continuities in thinking that make feminist politics possible. Readings include but are not limited to: Sigmund Freud, Melanie Klein, Gayle Rubin, Simone de Beauvoir, Julia Kristeva, Judith Butler, bell hooks, Donna Haraway, Paul B. Preciado, Sylvia Wynter, Sophie Lewis, and Nancy Fraser.

Satisfies a “Diversity” elective distribution requirement

LIT 4608.001

Law and Literature

Trinyan Mariano
Tu/Th, 1:20PM-2:35PM WMS 318

The law “creates the social world,” the same social world, Pierre Bourdieu writes, “which first creates the law” (“The Force of Law” 839). The dynamic Bourdieu puts forward will provide us with a set of working assumptions—namely, that the social and material worlds we inhabit, engender, and maintain are inescapably normative and narrative, enabled and constrained by the paths plotted upon reality by imagination. It is, after all, from language, corpus, and myth that institutions, prescriptions, and ways of being-in-the-world are constructed. Accordingly, the class draws on the tools of the literary critic and the lawyer to investigate various configurations between the discursive and the coercive, the imaginary and the real, the languages of authority and those of internal persuasion, and the fictionalized experiences of individuals and communities caught up in these relations. The focus will be on US American law and fiction, in transnational contexts. Coursework includes extensive reading, engaged discussion, several short papers, a presentation, and a research project.

The course meets distribution requirements for diversity.

LIT 2030 

Introduction to Poetry: The Making of A Poem

Gbenga Adesina
M/W, 3:05PM-4:20PM WMS 319

This course engages students in the art of understanding and analyzing poetry as a genre by looking closely and critically at the forms, themes, techniques, and devices in selected poems from a variety of historical periods.

A Poem is both song and story. A poem allows us to tell a story that is specific to our gaze and voice. In that way, a poem is an intimate history. In this class, we will examine compelling poems to see what we can glimpse of their brilliance and architecture. The class will be guided by a series of craft questions: how do you begin a poem? How do you end a poem? How do you tell your story in a poem? How do you sustain your voice in a poem? We will read and study works by Ocean Vuong, Ilya Kaminsky, Sylvia Plath, Leonard Cohen, and other brilliant poets and contemporary writers working now in our lifetime and the new ways they continue to make excellent art.