Modernism and its Afterlives

Dr. Emily James, Fall 2019

Tolkien: Middle Ages, Middle Earth

Dr. Martin Warren, Fall 2019

Writing Poetry

Dr. Leslie Miller, Fall 2019

Shakespeare Gone Global

Dr. Amy Muse, Spring 2020

The Gothic Novel

Dr. Alexis Easley, Spring 2020

Fall 2019 Courses

This course provides an introduction to the expectations and conventions of graduate study, including research and writing methodology. In addition, it will introduce students to the field of English studies: its areas of specialization, key issues, and genres of writing. This course must be taken as one of the first three courses in the MA in English program.

GENG 513-01 Intro to Grad Studies in English Wednesdays, 6:00 - 9:00 pm Dr. Laura Zebuhr JRC 246

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In this course, we will examine the border both as geographical line and limit and imaginative space and method. How might the current regimentation of borders work on and against the increasing dispersal of global culture and capital? How might our analysis of the border as an epistemic framework shape the way we read texts? This class will consider the ways in which writers and theorists are rethinking notions of the border as a political and aesthetic category. This course is required for all students entering the program in the summer of 2018 and beyond.

GENG 516-01 Questions in Literary Theory: Borders Wednesdays, 6:00 - 9:00 pm Dr. Kanishka Chowdhury JRC 481

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J.R.R. Tolkien, an Oxford professor and eminent medievalist, is best known for The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings, works that have been popular since they were first published. One of Tolkien’s distinctive contributions to fantasy writing lies in the example he set as a builder of worlds. Fantasy and science-fiction novelists, game designers, and role-play enthusiasts all acknowledge Tolkien as a master in the art of constructing a universe with its own history and geography, flora and fauna, cultures and languages, magic and physics. Tolkien rooted his fictional works in the language and traditions of the Anglo-Saxon, Norse, Gothic, and Celtic cultures that he studied as a medievalist. The class examines his major, seminal fantasy fictions through these cultures, traditions, and languages alongside the theories he himself developed of fantasy world-building. The labor of creating Middle-earth, in its various phases, revisions and versions, has become a subject of study, to which much academic attention has been devoted. Questions that guide this class are: What are the implications and ramifications of the act of worldbuilding, especially as it was conceived and practiced by Tolkien? How do we situate Tolkien's creation within the context of Tolkien’s work as both artist and medievalist and alongside its medieval sources and modern parallels, the uses of tradition, the nature of history and its relationship to place? What does Tolkien’s work teach us about storytelling, art and imagination? How are Tolkien’s works repurposed in modern media (a children’s play, spoken word poetry, visual art, film, radio, song cycle, Aubusson tapestries, dialect literature and YouTube videos)?

GENG 521-01 Tolkien: Middle Ages, Middle Earth, Building Worlds Thursdays, 6:00 - 9:00 pm Dr. Martin Warren OEC 212

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This graduate course in the writing of poetry will include practical, theoretical and creative explorations of poetry writing and publishing. A combination of readings, workshop experiences, and writing exercises designed to facilitate exploration of subject matter and technique, this course welcomes students exploring the genre of poetry for the first time, as well as students continuing studies in poetry writing. Readings will include practical, theoretical and creative texts, and address poetry writing in publishing contexts-- how poetry collections are written, revised, organized, submitted, acquired, edited, and marketed. Students will also gain insight into broader issues in the publishing world such as the roles of small and independent presses, university presses, traditional major presses, online publishing, audience development, and issues of access and diversity in the literary marketplace.

GENG 601 Writing Poetry Mondays, 6:00 - 9:00 pm Dr. Leslie Miller JRC 481

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Beginning with the turn of the twentieth century, this class will look closely at modernist experiments across the arts and then turn to the homages and reactions they inspired later in the century. Writers may include E.M. Forster, Virginia Woolf, Mina Loy, Roddy Doyle, Kazuo Ishiguro, Zadie Smith, Helen Oyeyemi, and Ali Smith. This course satisfies the Transnational Literature requirement of the new curriculum.

GENG 632-01 Modernism and its Afterlives Tuesdays, 6:00 - 9:00 pm Dr. Emily James JRC 481

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Spring 2020 Courses

This course explores the history, theory, practice, and pedagogy of English studies as a field. We will focus on how English is taught at the college level across a variety of sub disciplines such as Literature, Linguistics, Rhetoric and Composition, Second Language Writing, and Professional Writing. Students will reflect on the connection between research, theory, and practice in English pedagogy.

GENG 507-01 Teaching College English Mondays, 6:00 - 9:00 pm Dr. Fernando Sánchez Room TBD

Taking a cue from Dr. Philip Deloria (Dakota), this class will survey the "unexpected" long history of indigenous North American fiction, essay, poetry, and theory from the 18th Century to the present. From the gynocratic (Paula Gunn Allen - Laguna Pueblo) roots of Native women's writing to the survivance (Gerald Vizenor - Anishinaabe) rhetoric deployed pan-tribally over centuries, we wil look at the many ways Native writers show us that sometimes "the body needs a story more than food to survive (Barry Lopez from Crow and Weasel).

GENG 559-01 Indians in Unexpected Places Tuesdays, 6:00 - 9:00 pm Dr. Elizabeth Wilkinson Room TBD


Though Shakespeare himself probably never left the shores of England, his imagination roamed widely, exploring fears and fantasies of Africa, the Mediterranean, and the New World, and his plays ventured from the Globe to circumnavigate the globe in dramatic, literary, and cinematic adaptations from India, Nigeria, the Caribbean, the Balkans, Japan, Iran, and present-day refugee camps (to name just a very few). We will examine Shakespeare as an author with global reach, both in the seventeenth century and today, reading plays such as HamletKing LearOthello, and The Tempest and modern rewritings of them, engaging with theories of adaptation, translation, and “writing back,” of globalization and decolonization, local and universal culture. Writing projects will include dramaturgical analysis, a theoretical essay, and an adaptation. This course satisfies both the early literature and global literature requirements. 


GENG 522-01 Shakespeare Gone Global Wednesdays, 6:00 - 9:00 pm Dr. Amy Muse Room TBD

In this course we’ll study the form and structure of the novel, project planning techniques for novel drafting and revising, publication and professional issues for fiction writers; and elements of craft in fiction writing. In addition to reading and discussing approximately six novels, we’ll also read a variety of books and essays about the novel. And we will write—a lot! If you are currently drafting or revising a novel (or want to), we can work your project into the final writing requirement for the course. For others, we will find a way to customize the final assignment so that you can work on a long project that fits with your interests (e.g., drafting a section of memoir using fiction-writing techniques that you learned in this course; or drafting part of a novel in verse; or conducting a research project on how to construct a book-length collection of poems).

GENG 603-01 Workshop on the Novel Thursdays, 6:00 - 9:00 pm Dr. Heather Bouwman Room TBD

Vampires, ghosts, murders, madness, living portraits, dungeons, secret passageways, sexual deviance, forbidden romance, and hysteria. The sensationalism of the Gothic novel made it one of the most popular -- and controversial -- genres in British literary history. This course will begin with the roots of the Gothic novel in the late eighteenth century and will then trace the development and transformation of gothicism over the course of the nineteenth century.  Following current scholarship, we will pose questions about belief in the supernatural, representations of violence, the significance of fantasy and fear, and the role of gender, race, class, and sexuality in the literature of terror. Course texts will include Horace Walpole's The Castle of Otranto, Anne Radcliffe's The Italian, Matthew Lewis's The Monk, Jane Austen's Northanger Abbey, and Bram Stoker's Dracula. Novels will be supplemented with readings in recent theory and criticism as well as a selection of cultural materials, including nineteenth-century poetry, journalism, and visual arts. This course will meet in class for the first 10 weeks, followed by 3 weeks of independent study and advising, and a final presentation week at the end of the semester.

This course counts as an early literature distribution requirement and a 600-level course.

GENG 630-01 The Gothic Novel Thursdays, 6:00 - 9:00 pm Dr. Alexis Easley Room TBD