Autumn 2012

2012 Autumn Quarter Class Schedule & Descriptions


ENG 400 – Structure of Modern English
Meyer, Tue 6:00-9:15, LPC

A systematic outline of modern English from both traditional and contemporary linguistic perspectives. Examines descriptive grammars, word and phrase structure, syntax and semantics, and formal issues of style and rhetoric.

Language and style core requirement in the MAE and MAWP. Elective in the MAE and MAWP.


ENG 407 – Language & Style for Writers
Meyer, Wed 5:45-9:00 p.m. LOOP

A comprehensive examination of structural and stylistic devices that accomplished writers use in creative and literary nonfiction contexts. Topics include sentence emphasis and rhythm, coherence, point of view, authorial stance, and rhetorical aspects of sentence structure, repetition, and punctuation.

Language and style core requirement in the MAE and MAWP. Elective in the MAE and MAWP.


ENG 427 – Milton
McQuade, Sat 10:00 a.m.-1:15 p.m. LPC

English 427 aims to explore the life and work of John Milton.  Students will read a variety of Milton’s writings, including Comus, Paradise Lost, and Samson Agonistes.  At the end of the course, students should be able to identify Miltonic themes and genres; understand how Milton’s work engages with early modern politics, gender, and religion; and gain insight into Milton’s evolution as an artist and a thinker. A final goal is, quite simply, appreciation: I hope that students who complete the course will learn to value Milton’s literary artistry and, most particularly, the brilliance of Paradise Lost.

Renaissance period requirement in the MAE. Elective in the MAE and MAWP.


ENG 439 – Topics in Restoration and 18th Century Literature: The Country and the City
Squibbs, Tue 6:00-9:15 p.m. LPC

This course takes its name from Raymond Williams’s landmark 1973 study of how the social and cultural changes wrought by modern capitalism in England were registered, and understood, in terms of contrasting notions of rural and urban life. The ideal of the country as a place of simple communal harmony and relative innocence was generated in part, Williams argues, in response to the alienation and personal isolation associated with urban experience. In this analysis, “the country” as a way of life is an imaginative product of urban modernity that gets mistaken for a real set of conditions which were being consigned to the past as English society became modernized and urbanized. In this course we will examine the insights, and limitations, of Williams’s account of how literature in the 18th century mediated the country and city as places, and as collections of attitudes and experiences. In addition to Williams’s book (and essays from a 1999 volume that reassessed The Country and the City), we will read poetry, prose, and plays by James Boswell, Eliza Haywood, John Gay, Oliver Goldsmith, Frances Burney, Thomas Gray, Anne Yearsley, James Lillo, and Christopher Smart. We will also read theoretical considerations of urban life by Georg Simmel, Michel De Certeau, Henri Lefebvre, and others.

18th Century period requirement in the MAE. Elective in the MAE and MAWP.


ENG 449 – Studies in 19th Century Literature: Gender, Power, Gothic, Society
Murphy, Tue 6:00-9:15 p.m. LPC

It was in the nineteenth century that the novel in Britain was at its most energetic and innovative. This course does not attempt to trace a history of the development of the novel during that period. What it does seek to do is to examine the novel from three particular perspectives. The first is that of gender. Edgeworth’s Belinda (1801) is an intervention, at the level of intelligentsia debate, in a discourse on feminism which went back to the Enlightenment and which had recently been energized by the French revolution. By contrast Hardy’s The Mayor of Casterbridge (1886) is an almost visceral exploration of a fraught masculinity. Gothic as a mode of exploration of the deeply troubling in human society is examined through three classic texts, Shelley’s Frankenstein (1818), Stevenson’s Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde (1886) and Stoker’s Dracula (1897). The course finally tackles three high Victorian novels of society and power: Dickens’s indictment of industrial society in Hard Times (1854), Trollope’s canny appraisal of clerical power struggles in Barchester Towers (1857) and Collins’s dissection of the investigative forces inherent in society in the first important detective novel, The Moonstone (1868).

You can download the accompanying poster here: ENG449Poster

19th Century period requirement in the MAE. Elective in the MAE and MAWP.


ENG 451 – Studies in the Modern British Novel
Fairhall, Mon 6:00-9:15 p.m. LPC

ENG 451, The Modern British Novel, provides an introduction to 20th-century English novels.  Most of the novels are modern rather than modernist; six of the authors and many of the main characters are female.  Half a dozen of these works have London settings.  Themes include the shifting socio-economic status of women, the construction of gender, the unequal relations between people caused by colonialism, patriarchy and social class, and the conflict between the heart’s aspirations and reality’s dictates.  We will pay close attention to the construction of the novels and other factors that contribute to their beauty and human interest.

One novel, Graham Greene’s The End of the Affair, portrays the possible intervention of the divine in human (and sexual) affairs as an agonizing issue.  Angela Carter’s The Magic Toyshop is a both an adolescent girl’s growing-up story, set in 1960s London, and a spooky retelling of the French fairytale “Bluebeard, or the Bloody Chamber.”  Greene’s novel and Ian McEwan’s Atonement brilliantly depict star-crossed lovers against the backdrop of World War Two.  Barbara Pym’s Excellent Women deals with the plight of a single woman in battered, economically pinched London a few years after the war’s end.  Two novels, Jean Rhys’s Wide Sargasso Sea and E.M. Forster’s A Passage to India, have colonial settings; Arundhati Roy’s The God of Small Things takes place in post-colonial India.  Other works include Katherine Mansfield’s “Bliss” (a short story for the first class) and Virginia Woolf’s Mrs. Dalloway.

20th/21st Century period requirement in the MAE. Elective in the MAE and MAWP.


ENG 469 – Topics in 19th Century American Literature: What is/was the American Renaissance?
Dinius, Th 6:00-9:15 p.m. LPC

That mid-nineteenth century America experienced a so-called Renaissance with the publication of several now-canonical literary texts has been the contention of several generations of American literary critics. More recently acknowledged is the role that other mid-century writers and kinds of writing played in the development of the period’s literary culture. The writings of F. O. Matthiessen’s American Renaissance authors (Emerson, Hawthorne, Thoreau, Melville, and Whitman) were published alongside poetry, fiction, and essays by their equally, if not better known contemporaries, including Poe, Stowe, Douglass, and Fern, and all-but-forgotten authors such as N. P. Willis and T. S. Arthur. This class will focus on works by these major mid-nineteenth and their less-familiar contemporaries in an effort to rethink the American literary canon in terms of its construction instead of its inevitability. In reading these texts alongside each other, and along with a survey of literary criticism on the American Renaissance, we will learn about the major ideas, aesthetics, and politics of the period, consider the status of the author in antebellum American society, and think about the many consequences of understanding literary works as alienable property.

19th Century period requirement in the MAE. Elective in the MAE and MAWP.


ENG 471 – Bibliography & Literary Research 
Shanahan, Wed 6:00-9:15 p.m.

This course provides an intensive introduction to the graduate-level study of English. Throughout the quarter we’ll develop and polish the skills necessary for advanced research, and we’ll discuss important professional issues.

Core requirement in the MAE. May NOT be used for credit in the MAWP.


ENG 474 – Teaching Literature
Goffman, Mon 6:00-9:15 p.m.

This course prepares students to teach introductory literature courses at the secondary and post-secondary (primarily community college) levels. Together we will address multiple forms of “literacy” as they pertain to the classroom, familiarize ourselves with various pedagogical practices, develop specific methods of teaching the major literary genres, and consider the transactional nature of reading and writing within a neuroscientific framework.

Lang/Lit/Teaching/Publishing requirement in the MAWP. Elective in the MAE and MAWP.


ENG 476 – Topics in Genre and Form: Narrative Strategies in Contemporary Novels
Stolar, Th 6:00-9:15 p.m. LPC

This course is a hybrid workshop/reading class.  We will look at several recent novels from a craft point of view, using a vocabulary similar to the vocabulary we use in workshop; we’ll talk about plot, conflict, resolution, character, action, point of view, story shape, showing vs telling, dialogue.  We’ll ask what the character(s) want and what keeps them from achieving it.  Like a mechanic looking at a car engine we’ll try to figure out how these novels were put together.  Then we’ll write several emulative pieces of fiction ourselves, where we consciously imitate some aspect of the novel we’re reading.

Lang/Lit/Teaching/Publishing requirement in the MAWP. Elective in the MAE and MAWP.


ENG 477 – Topics in Publishing: Outreach Press
Green, Tue 6:00-9:15 p.m. LPC

This course will focus on the pre-production stage of book publishing, in which students will engage in hands-on editing and preparation of an existent full-length manuscript. Drawing on the research work of Miles Harvey’s students over the last two years, this manuscript will contain real-life narratives of Chicago residents affected by youth violence. Following this pre-production course, there will be winter (production) and spring (post-production) courses that see this manuscript into print and digital publication. Students are welcome to take any or all three of these courses. No prerequisite.

Lang/Lit/Teaching/Publishing requirement in the MAWP. Elective in the MAE and MAWP.


ENG 477 – Topics in Publishing: Trends in Publishing- The Past, Present, and Future of the Literary Page
TBA, Tue 5:45-9:00 p.m. LOOP

This class is an overview of what literary publishing has been and will be, with a focus on changing literary demographics and developing technologies. We will begin by asking what a book and/or journal really is, in terms of both tradition and aesthetics, look at politics of power, change and alternative innovation through a literary publishing lens, join contemporary conversations about self-publishing, green publishing, print-on-demand, and book arts, question whether digital publishing could impact the nature of literature itself, explore debates about gender and identity politics in literary journals and book publishing, and finally come back to the question: What is a book, and what will literary publishing become?

Lang/Lit/Teaching/Publishing requirement in the MAWP. Elective in the MAE and MAWP.


ENG 484 – Writing Workshop: Writing Coming-of-Age Fiction
Gautier, Mon 6:00-9:15 p.m. LPC

Is there a difference between writing about childhood and writing children’s literature? How can writing from the point of view of a child help writers develop their craft and technique? Can one capture the authentic voice of a child or adolescent or write about children without sentimentalizing or romanticizing them? In this workshop, we will explore the means and methods of writing from the child’s point of view, discuss its pros and cons, review excerpted examples, and experiment with various writing exercises in an attempt to master the child’s point of view.

Writing Workshop requirement in the MAWP. Elective in the MAE and MAWP.


ENG 484 – Writing Workshop: Triptych: Fiction, Poetry, One-Acts
Sneed, Thu 6:00-9:15 p.m. LPC

Students in this class will study and discuss the everyday details and concerns that inform and enrich the lives of all writers and readers.  Literary writers sometimes do make use of extraordinary or dramatic events: the tsunamis, heart transplants, plane crashes, military coups, quintuplet births, the sex-change operations, but much serious writing is mostly concerned with small, fleeting moments of connection or disconnection between characters and the communities where they have made their lives.

Students will be required to read work in three genres: fiction, poetry, and drama, and write new work in each genre: a one-act play, a short story, and three poems – which in some way should all reflect the wondrous world of the everyday.

Writing Workshop requirement in the MAWP. Elective in the MAE and MAWP.


ENG 487 – Travel Writing
Morano, Tue 6:00-9:15 p.m. LPC

In this workshop, students will craft the raw materials of experience, memory, and sometimes research into travel essays. In our writing and reading we’ll grapple with concepts of truth, accuracy, and authority, as well as with questions about the very nature of travel. What does it mean to travel? Why do we do it? What do we gain in the process of uprooting ourselves, and what do we lose? By turning away from the simple answers to these and other questions, and by excavating material for its depth and richness, students will begin to shape preliminary writings into pieces of literature that both engage and enlighten the reader.

Writing Workshop requirement in the MAWP. Elective in the MAE and MAWP.


ENG 490 – Writing for Magazines
Isackson, N. Mon 6:00-9:15 p.m. LPC

Writing Workshop requirement in the MAWP. Elective in the MAE and MAWP.


ENG 492 – Writing Fiction
TBA, Tue 6:00-9:15 p.m. LPC

Writing Workshop requirement in the MAWP. Elective in the MAE and MAWP.


ENG 493 – Writing Workshop: Writing Poetry
Jones, Wed 6:00-9:15 p.m. LPC

“Writing Poetry” is a seminar in writing and reading poetry. Class will be conducted in a workshop format with emphasis on class discussion of student writing. At the end of the semester each student will turn in a final portfolio of finished poems.

Writing Workshop requirement in the MAWP. Elective in the MAE and MAWP.


ENG 496 – Editing
Mulderig, Wed 6:00-9:15 p.m. LPC

An introduction to editing principles and practices in professional and technical fields.

Elective in the MAE and MAWP.

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