Past Courses – (TEST)
Departmental permission required
From its appearance in the late twelfth century through the end of the Middle Ages, romance was the dominant long narrative genre in western vernaculars. As such, it was an important imaginative space for developing and reconsidering ideologies of identity, justice, conquest, sexuality, faith, history, and more. This course will only begin to introduce the genre’s capacious reach. We will place English romances in the Angllo-Norman and continental French context, and we will focus on just a few of their many preoccupations. First unit: courtship, homoeroticism, gender definition; second unit: chivalric identity, honor, performance of identity; third unit: nation, race, and faith. Romances likely to be on the syllabus: Eneas, Tristan, Erec and Enide, Knight of the Cart, Romance of the Rose, Romance of the Horn, King Horn, Havelok the Dane, Floris and Blancheflor, Squire’s Tale, Morte Darthur.
The lecture class is an interdisciplinary exploration of the history of the African continent during the colonial and postcolonial eras. Its focus is the intersection of politics, economics, culture and society. Using colonialism, empire, and globalization as key analytical frames, it pays special attention to social, political and cultural changes that shaped the various African individual and collective experiences.
(Lecture). The premise of this course is that many of the aesthetically most accomplished works of fiction written in the last half century have also worked hardest to engage with the almost ungraspable realities of their planetary location in space and time. Writers to be discussed include Tayeb Salih, Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Marguerite Duras, Milan Kundera, Jamaica Kincaid, Kazuo Ishiguro, and W.G. Sebald.
Instructor: J. Cavallo and W. DeBary
Prerequisites: One semester of Contemporary Civilization or Literature Humanities, or an equivalent course, and a one-semester course selected from the Asian Humanities core, or its equivalent, and the instructor’s permission. Interested students must complete an application with the instructors. A team-taught multicultural, interdisciplinary course examining traditions of leadership and citizenship as they appear in the key texts of early Indian, Islamic, Far Eastern, and Western civilizations. One goal is to identify and examine common human values and issues evident in these texts while also recognizing key cultural differences. Global Core.
In the past decades, feminist and queer literary theorists have found in the novel a template ripe for critical reflections on key literary, cultural and theoretical questions. The seminar will revisit a number of feminist and queer classics in literature and theory as well as recent novels that have engendered new theoretical imaginings. We will grapple with debated about the crossings of embodiment, difference, power, colonization, and globalization as well as the queer and gendered inflections of narrative, performativity, reading, authorship, plot, time, and space. Readings may include: Austen, Brontë, Cixous, Coetsee, Devi, Flaubert, Freud, Mme De Lafayette, James, Kincaid, Larsen, Lispector, Morrison, Proust, Rhys, Truong, Wintersen, and Woolf; as well as Bersani, Butler, Edelman, Gallop, Gilbert and Gubar, Halberstam, Johnson, Miller, Schor, Sedgwick, Spivak, Warner, and others. Students
Instructor: A. Mac Adam
Instructor: J. Gamber
The master narrative of the United States has always vacillated between valorizations of movement and settlement. While ours is a nation of immigrants, one which privileges its history of westward expansion and pioneering, trailblazing adventurers, we also seem to long for what Wallace Stegner called a “sense of place,” a true belonging within a single locale. Each of these constructions has tended to focus on individuals with a tremendous degree of agency in terms of where and whether they go. However, it is equally important to understand the tension between movement and stasis within communities most frequently subjected to spatial upheavals. To that end, this course is designed to examine narratives of immigration, migration, relocation, and diaspora by authors of color in the United States.
This reading seminar will review key aspects of early twentieth-century metropolitan thought and follow these forward into the present, confronting them with new historical formations along the way. Special emphasis will be given to interactions between capitalism and culture and to the social relations of modernization, including the role of architecture and urbanism therein. The goal is not a metalanguage but rather, the elaboration of a critical discourse by which urban artifacts and phenomena can be interpreted, even as they contribute to it. Students are expected to participate in class discussion, present at least one reading to the class, and write a research paper on a subject related to at least one set of readings, the subject matter of which is to be determined in individual meetings during office hours.