ENGL 2130: Sex & Sexuality: Introduction to British Literature
This survey course spans the medieval, Renaissance, and Restoration periods of British literature with a focus on how sex, sexuality and gender appear in these texts. How are we empowered (or not) by desire and the physical body? We will consider the way the texts we read engage with sex, sexuality, and gender as they relate to politics, theology, marriage, colonization, and individuality, among other topics. Come to class ready to ask and answer questions. Most class time will be discussion-based, with an emphasis on critical thinking and class participation.
ENGL 2230: British Literature before 1789
By 1789, Great Britain was one of the most powerful empires in the world, having colonized portions of Africa, the Caribbean, and North America. Why was such a small island consumed with gaining such great power? Could national and political power somehow transfer to personal ability and agency, or vice versa? In this class, we will consider the potential connections and conversations between political power and personal agency in British literary texts, including the works of Chaucer, Sidney, Donne, Shakespeare, Milton, Swift, and Pope, to name only a few. Through the exploration of these texts, we will consider Great Britain’s obsession with power and agency—be it through theological, political, sexual, or literary contexts—in order to interrogate the ways in which the world of Great Britain before 1789 continues to shape our understanding of the world around us.
ENGL 2312: Introduction to Fiction: Myths and Legends
How are myths and legends made? This introduction to fiction focuses on narrative and fictional constructions of myths and legends. Our objectives will be to define, understand, and then deconstruct the distinctions between myth and legend within the broader category of fiction. We will also consider how myths and legends can be a source of social and political empowerment as well as cultural confusion. We will read a variety of fictional myths as well as the fact/fiction blend of legends. Most class time will be discussion-based, with an emphasis on critical thinking and class participation. Class assignments will include two essays, a midterm, a final, and quizzes.
ENGL 2310: Imagination and Interpretation: Page and Stage
How do we know who we are? How do we distinguish between authentic and performed versions of self? This course will introduce students to a variety of texts and authors as they appear on the private page and the public stage. Students will learn how to read and discuss texts with an analytical eye and how to write a short literary analysis of a text. Authors will include Shakespeare, Donne, Milton, Wordsworth, Austen, Woolf, and others. Requirements: 2 papers, midterm, final exam, and some quizzes.
ENGL 1385: Power, Passion, and Protest in British Literature
A high-speed, one-semester introductory overview of British literature, from its medieval beginnings to (almost) the present day, with attention to literature’s capacities to pursue desire and to exercise (and resist) various kinds of power. As we survey this history, and trace the story of one of the world’s great cultural treasures, we will consider literature in relation to the social, political, intellectual, and religious histories in which it was written, as well as its relevance to our own time. Authors covered will include Chaucer, Shakespeare, Wroth, Donne, Milton, Behn, Swift, Wordsworth, Keats, Browning, Rossetti, Tennyson, Woolf, Joyce, Eliot, and Beckett. Method of instruction: lecture and discussion. Methods of evaluation: midterm and final exams, quizzes, short essays, participation.
DISC 1312: Shaping Subjectivities
Through a variety of texts that analyze the origins of human subjectivity, this class will explore the ways we rely on or reject external influences in the formation of self. This course provides tools that will make students more efficient readers, writers, and speakers. Class objectives will include utilizing basic techniques for interpreting and constructing arguments, recognizing subtext in fiction and non-fiction works, and honing critical reading and composition skills.
DISC 1312: Identity and Individualism
Students write thesis-driven, evaluative, and persuasive essays in response to a variety of relatively short texts from a number of academic disciplines, including those in scientific and technical fields. Texts focus on questions of identity and what it means to be an individual. Both the texts students read and the texts students create employ and exemplify the principles of academic discernment and discourse.
DISC 1313: Ways of Seeing: Making Sense of Visual Images
This course examines a variety of images, from high art to popular culture, as well as consider a number of scholarly articles in order to construct students’ own understanding of how the artist, cultural influences, artistic media, and personal contexts affect the way people respond to visual images. This class meets occasionally in the campus art museum and facilitates first-hand research activities that culminate in the final research paper.