Fall 2017 Courses

Issues in Criticism

An introduction to the principal theoretical issues and questions in the discipline of literary studies. The course explores the major contemporary approaches to literary studies in the context of various traditions of literary theory and criticism. It encourages students to assess constructively some of the key controversies in contemporary critical theory and apply their learning to the interpretation of literary texts. This required course must be taken as one of the first three courses in the program.

GENG 513-01 Issues in Criticism Mondays, 6:00 - 9:00 pm Dr. Alexis Easley JRC 481

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The English Renaissance

In this course, we’ll study the literature of the Early Modern period in England, with some glances at its Continental context.  Among the many topics we’ll be examining are the new sense of human psychology and the inner person, the new view of religion and its relation to the state, new views of women and of male-female relations, and new views of literature and its place in society.  The works we will study represent a broad range of genres, styles and approaches; the authors will include Thomas More, Sidney, Spenser, and Shakespeare as well as Amelia Lanyer, Mary Wroth, and Margaret Cavendish. This course satisfies the pre-1830 British Literature distribution requirement.

GENG 522-01 The English Renaissance Thursdays, 6:00 - 9:00 pm Dr. Ray MacKenzie MHC 211

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19th-Century American Literature

This course investigates a concept that is very intimately tied to commonplace narratives about the United States: freedom. Specifically, we will ask 19th-century literary and philosophical texts to help us think through the relationship between freedom and constraint. While we might perhaps think of freedom as the absence of constraint, such a conception of freedom makes it challenging to imagine our lives together, or to speak of “the common good.” We will look at how 19th-century texts theorize and represent what it might mean to be free. Secondary readings that introduce transnational philosophical and political debates about freedom and free will in the late 18th and 19th centuries, as well as slavery and emancipation, Indian Removal, immigration, and industrialization will frame our discussions. This course satisfies the pre-1900 American Literature distribution requirement.

GENG 547-01 19th-Century American Literature Wednesdays, 6:00 - 9:00 pm Dr. Laura Zebuhr MHC 211

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Feminisms in Thought & Action

2.9 million marching for women’s rights and for human rights…. In the words of the 1960s rock band Buffalo Springfield, “There’s something happening here / What it is ain’t exactly clear / There’s a man with a gun over there / Telling me I got to beware / We better stop, children; what’s that sound / Everybody look what’s going ‘round….” In a lot of ways, it does feel like we have landed squarely in a twilight zone that harkens back to the protests of the 1960s. But it’s not 1967; it’s 2017. What is happening here? That’s what this course will examine, currently and historically, through a Woman’s Studies lens. We’ll be using a combination of the text Reading Feminist Theory by Susan Archer Mann and articles available digitally via Ms. Magazine in the Classroom and our library edition of Bitch magazine. We’ll look at the intersectionality at work in the world and in our small corner of it. Our goal will be to write conference level papers that could be presented at the National Women’s Studies Association Conference (NWSA) or the Feminisms and Rhetorics Conference (FemRhet) or any of a number of other conferences that focus on feminist / womanist scholarship. Prerequisite: GENG 513 or permission of the instructor.

GENG 613-01 Feminisms in Thought & Action Tuesdays, 6:00 - 9:00 pm Dr. Elizabeth Wilkinson JRC 481

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