ENGL 634 - Teaching Composition (#6275)
T 5:00-7:50 p.m.
ENGL 644 - 18th Century British Literature (#7916)
M 3:00-5:50 p.m.
A sequel to a play is like more last words. ‘Tis a kind of absurdity... (John Gay’s Polly)
In this course, we will discuss the “absurdity” of the sequel as a literary form and how it undermines our sense of “the whole story.” We might have to develop new reading strategies to accommodate works which defy narrative closure and which may challenge conventional endings, such as when a work that seems to end “happily ever after” is followed by a sequel that concludes in tragedy and misery. Characters in sequels may develop in ways that surprise us or force us to re-consider earlier judgments, such as when an “evil” character becomes “good.”
In addition to delivering an in-class presentation and directing part of class discussion, students will be expected to write a major research paper (including a preliminary draft) and an optional book review. The texts will be from a variety of genres, including novels (e.g., Defoe’s The Farther Adventures of Robinson Crusoe, Bunyan’s The Pilgrim’s Progress Part 2, and Sarah Fielding’s The Adventures of David Simple), plays (e.g., Gay’s The Beggar’s Opera andPolly), poetry (e.g., Pope’s The Rape of the Lock and A Key to the Lock), and even sequential art (e.g., Hogarth's A Harlot's Progress and A Rake's Progress).
Ambitious undergraduates may also enroll in the class with the permission of the instructor.
ENGL 653 - American Literature: 1920-Present (#8243)
ENGL 653 will focus on the neo-slave narrative tradition, historical slave narratives set in the Antebellum South or novels sets in post-Reconstruction twentieth century America. Neo-slave narratives depict American slavery as a historical phenomenon that has lasting cultural meaning and enduring social consequences with contemporary neo-slave narratives dealing substantially with the demonstrable effects of slavery on contemporary black subjects. While slavery may figure prominently in some texts, in others it may be virtually non-existent or appear in a passing reference.
I am considering the following texts and will cut the list down to a manageable reading load. An asterisk means the text has made the final cut:
Zora Neale Hurston’s Their Eyes Were Watching God
Willa Cather’s Sapphira and the Slave Girl
*Ralph Ellison’s Invisible Man
Margaret Walker’s Jubilee
Ernest J. Gaines’s The Autobiography of Miss Jane Pittman
*Octavia Butler’s Kindred
Gloria Naylor’s Mama Day and/or Linden Hills
Sherley Ann Williams’s Dessa Rose
Toni Morrison’s Beloved and/or A Mercy
*James McBride’s Song Yet Sung
*Valerie Martin’s Property
ENGL 661 - Literary Criticism and Theory (#7911)