ENGL 2050-01: Self Staging: Oral Communication in Daily Life
M 5:30-8:55, Pafford 308, Session I
In Self-Staging: Oral Communication in Everyday Life, we will study the public “self” in relation to a variety of audiences, understanding how the personas we construct and the roles we play differ in relation to different audiences. The course will be broken up into three units, each culminating in individual oral performances crafted in group workshops. We will begin by exploring the nature of public performances that have a human spectacle at their center, such as in a museum, at a cultural exposition, or even in a freakshow. How and why do we stage ourselves as monsters, curiosities, and “others” that we then consume? Our second unit focuses on the comedic self, the self who entertains an audience by telling stories and creating a persona—a persona that might resemble the “real” self (Chris Rock), act as its ironic opposite (Stephen Colbert), or be purely invented (Borat). Our final unit will examine the professional self, with a potential employer as one’s primary audience.
Texts: All readings will be available on course reserve through the library.
Requirements: One of the most important requirements is sustained engagement with the class for three and a half hours a day. In other words, one’s “student self,” and one’s ability to play the role of an interested learner in a meaningful community of learners, will be a huge component of the final grade. Daily reading quizzes, short writing assignments in preparation for class, performance-building workshops, and three oral presentations will make up the rest of the final grade.
ENGL 2060-01: Intro to Creative Writing
MTWRF 3:00pm – 5:15pm, Pafford 307, Session III
ENGL 2110-01: World Literature
MTWR 5:00-7:45 pm, Pafford 308, Session IV
This course will focus on the ways texts and the cultures from which they spring have dealt with myths of the underworld and how those myths inform the way we think about life, death, and the all-important afterlife. Using Dante’s Inferno as a pivotal text, we will look at classical and contemporary representations of the underworld as they appear in both European and non-European literatures. Central to our exploration will be the concepts of the hero’s journey, the quest for spiritual enlightenment, the fascination with sin, and the notion of justice (both the divine and the figuratively medieval).
Texts: Achebe, Chinua, Things Fall Apart; Dante, The Inferno; Homer, The Odyssey; Kafka, Franz, The Metamorphosis; Min, Anchee, Red Azalea; Virgil, The Aeneid; plus supplementary reading to be handed out in class.
Requirements: class participation, daily quizzes, weekly response papers ; and a comprehensive final exam.
ENGL 2120-01: British Literature
MTWRF 12:30pm – 2:45pm, Pafford 308, Session III
Exploring Englishness:The Norton Anthology of English Literature suggests that "most nations define what they are by defining what they are not." This survey will consider this notion of negative self-definition in a vast array of texts that range over several centuries. Most of these stories emphasize the journey of heroes or heroines into alien territory, where they experience conflict with a malignant other, discover love (sometimes romantic, sometimes spiritual), and come to apprehend their own true natures. We will determine whether we can characterize these literatures as distinctly English or British.
Texts: The Norton Anthology of English Literature: The Major Authors. 8 th ed.
Requirements: Active discussion, response essays, and final.
ENGL 2130-01: American Literature
MTWRF 10:00 am – 12:15 pm, Pafford 308 , Session III
Patrick M. Erben
During the American Revolution, the French immigrant writer J. Hector St. John de Crevecoeur wrote a series of fictional letters in which he famously asked “What then is the American, this new man?” Of course, the quest for a unique American identity occupied the country during its war for independence, yet this question has been a recurring theme throughout American literature and culture. In a time when “American values” are often hailed as unassailable truths and various forms of dissent or difference are branded—once again—as “un-American,” this survey of American literature tries to shed light on the complex history of this idea. By reading texts ranging from the colonial period to the present, we will use American literature as a tool to understand the contested nature of American identity and to question the idea of being “American” as a static and unchangeable quality.
Texts: The Norton Anthology of American Literature, 7 th edition (1-vol. compact edition)
Requirements: Regular attendance, active participation, weekly reading quizzes, midterm and final exams, two response essays.
ENGL 2130-91: American Literature (Newnan campus)
TR 11:00am – 1:30pm, Newnan, Session II
ENGL 2190: Studies in Literature by Women
MTWR 5:00 p.m.-7:45 p.m., TLC 1116, Session III
May count for credit in Core Area C2. This class will investigate significant literary works by women writers and the emergence of a transatlantic American female aesthetic rooted in a state of and resistance to captivity. As Sandra Gilbert and Susan Gubar have written, women writers often experienced social constraints concerning gender where the female body (physical and textual) was told to “suffer and be still, to bleed and endure” (No Man’s Land 113). In resistance to these white, patriarchal constructs of female virtue and proper roles for women, many American women authors—consciously or not—wrote against the containment of female creativity, desire, and compulsory heterosexuality. Sometimes this resistance is subversive and geared towards raising consciousness and practicing discernment; at other times, it is full revolt.
After examining the highly politicized early American captivity narrative, a genre dominated by the experiences of women as captives, writers, and readers, this course will follow the transformation of captivity tropes (literal and metaphorical) and the employment of the female body in its evolution in the American literary and cultural landscape. In addition to selected poetry and polemical texts, we will explore sentimental and historical fiction and film.
Texts: Susanna Rowson, Charlotte: A Tale of Truth; Kate Chopin, The Awakening (Bedford/St. Martin's Case Studies, 2 nd Ed.); Alice Walker, The Color Purple; selected captivity narratives, poetry, short fiction and non-fiction, and critical excerpts will be made available via library reserve.
Requirements: Reading quizzes, active participation, two analytical essays, and a final exam.
ENGL 4109-01W: Film as Literature
MTWRF 1:00pm – 4:25pm, Humanities 209 , Session I
Images of the Female in Contemporary American Film Using contemporary criticism on women in film and the ways in which women are represented in a set of contemporary films organized around four major facets of the female experience—romantic relationships, motherhood, career, and female bonding, we will attempt to reach conclusions about the ways in which films shape our understanding of female identity and roles and, conversely, how films reflect the realities of the female experience in our time. Because of the limited time frame in Maymester, we will watch the films in class and discuss them at the next class meeting.
Texts: No purchase of texts required. Films include: Little Women, An UnmarriedWoman, She’s Gotta Have It, Chasing Amy, The Good Mother, Crooklyn, Norma Rae, Broadcast News, Courage under Fire, Thelma and Louise, and How to Make an American Quilt.
Requirements: Mandatory attendance for all class meetings, with no late arrivals or early departures; informed and helpful participation in class discussion; daily viewing quizzes; in-class writing-to-learn activities; a one- to two-page response (topics assigned) for each film; and expansion of one response into a full essay, including secondary sources (this paper will count as the final exam).
ENGL 4170-01W: African-American Literature
MTWRF 3:00pm – 5:15pm, Session III
This course will examine major trends, authors, and texts central to the development of African-American literature. The politics of race, gender, sexuality, class, and region will play major roles in our analysis. Indeed, the dynamics of inter-textual exchange—the ways in which texts invoke and revise previous works (the ways in which they “riff” on one another)—will also inform our exploration. And, of course, the ways in which texts derive meaning through extra-textual references and associations (African American music or folk culture for example) will also shape our reading of African American literature and its place/role in literary studies.
Texts: Norton Anthology of African American Literature, 2 nd Edition, Edited by Henry Louis Gates, Jr
Requirements: Response papers, presentations, a longer literature project, daily quizzes.
ENGL 4300-01: Studies in ENGL Lang: Grammar
MTWRF 3:00pm – 5:15pm, Pafford 102 , Session IV
In this course we will explore the structure or grammar of the English language and work toward understanding the principles or rules that make it work. This course is primarily designed for English majors who seek to improve the grammatical proficiency of their writing and for future teachers at the secondary and college level. However, this course also has applications for students entering business and industry, science and medical fields, law and politics, media and public relations, or anyone who recognizes the essential human value of language and who understands how the ability to use language contributes to personal and professional success in life. After all, when you are talking to friends, asking someone out on a date, debating sports or politics, buying clothes at the mall, or writing a paper, you are using the structures and principles of English grammar, even when your sentences are not grammatical! However, knowing a language and knowing about the language are different kinds of knowledge. Even the ability to speak grammatically correct sentences in no way guarantees that a speaker knows enough about English to explain what makes those sentences grammatical. This course is designed to help you achieve that knowledge. We will refer frequently to Standard English, and, certainly, one of the benefits of this course is that it will help you refine your written and verbal language skills. However, this is not simply a course about grammatical correctness; instead, this course is designed to help you understand how the English language functions, what structures and rules are behind the sentence constructions that you and others create every day. To accomplish this task, we will learn some basic linguistic and grammatical concepts, and we will learn how to analyze (and diagram) different sentence constructions. We will also learn how elements of the language (verbs, nouns, sentence structures, pronouns, etc.) emerged and changed over time to create the language we use today.
Texts: Vitto, Cindy. Grammar by Diagram. Second Edition. Broadview Press, 2006; Vitto, Cindy. Grammar by Diagram Workbook. Broadview Press, 2008
NOTE: These textbooks can be purchased as a set at a reduced price from the bookstore. The ISBN for the bundled set is either 978-1-55402-925-9 or 1-55402-925-2.
Requirements: Daily reading and homework assignments from the textbook and workbook, several short tests, and 3 major examinations.
ENGL 4385-01W: Lit/Culture of Restoration
TR 11:00am – 1:30pm, Pafford 109 , Session II
Restoration Literature and Culture: This course examines the plays, poems, and prose of an ostentatious, sexy, and vivacious time in London—1660-1700. After Oliver Cromwell died, and the English Commonwealth came to an end, the Parliament welcomed King Charles II back to the country with (half) open arms. Charles II’s return to England and to the kingship in 1660 marked a distinctly new era for literature and culture in England—one that continues to make modern audiences blush. Literature and culture under the restored Stuarts had an energy, bawdiness, and tenor all its own: from sometime erotic coterie poetry, to bawdy plays that treat themes such as adultery, to the tentative experiments in the English novel. This course examines the coteries, playhouses, and coffeehouses of the Stuart Restoration, exploring the changes in arts, sciences, and cultural meanings in a distinctly pre-Enlightenment mode.
Texts: Selected poetry prose and plays by Aphra Behn; Selected poetry from Rochester, Finch, and Killigrew; plays from Dryden, Ethrege, and Wycherly; selected prose from Addison, Steel, and Defoe.
Requirements: 2 (3/4 page) papers; one (7/10) page paper
ENGL 6385-01: Seminar in Special Topics
MW 10am – 12:30pm, Pafford 309, Session II
Idylls of the Kid?: Young Adult Literature and the Culture of Adolescence: Curriculum specialists exclude it. Scholars resist critiquing it. Parents fear it. Graduate students don’t often learn about or specialize in it. Teachers question it. Adolescents, on the other hand, read it, reread it, and read it yet again before passing it off to a friend who does the same. So, what gives?
In a cultural climate where almost every teacher-training program, school administrator, teacher, and parent trumpet the educational imperative that students become civic-minded “lifelong learners” and “avid readers,” Young Adult literature—the genre often considered “a great abyss between the wonderfully exciting and engaging materials for children and those for adults” (Vandergrift)—is often maligned and distrusted. If one of the desired ends of education, as our performance standards tell us, is to produce a reader who reads of her own volition, to produce a reader who, through practice, comes to understand literature and the world in increasingly complex ways, why ignore the obvious means at our disposal? Why find academically objectionable that huddle of students whispering about Twilight’s love affair or the latest Avi novel, which is written like a screenplay that married a diary and produced a newspaper exposé? Why not bridge to the Brontë novel alluded to in Meyer’s text or discuss Avi’s method as postmodern pastiche put down for tweens, or, further, why not work to see the value in the thing itself, in adolescents reading texts that mirror their own varied lives, the good, bad, and, unfortunately, the sometimes deeply ugly?
This course seeks to investigate such issues by studying the sometimes troublesome genre of Young Adult literature. We will read and critique primary texts from its milieu. Students will also learn about the theoretical frameworks—pedagogical, political, legal, and literary—that envelop the genre.
Texts: The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian , Sherman Alexie; Nothing But the Truth, Avi; Feed, M.T. Anderson; The Chocolate War, Robert Cormier; Speak, Laurie Halse-Anderson; The Astonishing Adventures of FanBoy and Goth Girl, Barry Lyga; Children of Heaven, dir. Majid Majidi; Twilight, Stephanie Meyer; Scorpions, Walter Dean Meyers; Catcher in the Rye, J.D. Salinger; Students will also read several scholarly articles housed on UWG’s electronic reserves system, Docutek.
Requirements: One presentation on primary and secondary materials; 3 Reader Responses; One major project; Active participation in seminar discussion
English 6385-02: Seminar in Special Topics
MW 2-4:30, Pafford 309, Session II
Tragic Drama and Modern Consciousness: Aristotle viewed tragedy as the highest form of literature, its subject matter being the fate of kings and their downfall through their own human error. Thus, traditional tragedy presents us with larger-than-life figures—people who are bigger, bolder, quite simply "more" than we are—but draws us to sympathize with them in their demise through our awareness both of a common humanity and of our socioeconomic distance from these powerful individuals. Most importantly, in this traditional formulation, tragic drama produces catharsis, allowing the audience to reaffirm their own safety by purging their fears through the sufferings of the characters.
The modern era has refocused this lens with a dramatic tradition that has responded to political upheaval, technological growth and the reorganization of the social body with a drama that is often resistant to closure and more interested in what Arthur Miller calls the "tragedy of the common man" than the fate of kings. Some critics have questioned whether tragedy in the classical sense can actually exist in the modern world, and the purpose of this course will be to interrogate both our assumptions about the construction of the tradition and to examine how modern writers have borrowed from and reshaped it.
This course will begin by examining “models” of traditional tragedy, using Sophocles' Oedipus Rex, which Aristotle called the perfect model of the form, as a starting point and going on to examine how other examples (for our purposes, Euripides’ Medea and Shakespeare's Othello) both reinforce and complicate our understanding of the genre. From there, we will examine a variety of modern and contemporary plays that ask us to question what "tragedy" as a genre has come to mean over the last hundred years. Discussions will focus on ways that writers have sought to appropriate elements of classical tragic form – the Greek chorus, for example – to new purposes, how modern drama has redefined its understanding of the tragic in response to the mass scale of twentieth century historical disasters, the frequent blending of tragedy and comedy on the modern stage, and what such changes suggest about the anxieties and complications of modern consciousness and modern theatre.
Texts will include Sophocles, Oedipus Rex, Euripides, Medea, William Shakespeare, Othello, T.S. Eliot, Murder in the Cathedral, Tennessee Williams, A Streetcar Named Desire, Marina Carr, By the Bog of Cats, August Wilson, Joe Turner's Come and Gone, Samuel Beckett, Waiting for Godot, Harold Pinter, Old Times, Christopher Shin, Dying City. Excerpts from secondary criticism will be placed on online reserve (including chapters from George Steiner, The Death of Tragedy, Paul Woodruff, The Necessity of Theater, Susan Langer, Feeling and Form and William Storm, After Dionysus)
Requirements: Short critical response essay, oral presentation (incorporating primary and secondary material), final research project, active participation in seminar discussion
XIDS 2100-01: Romanticism in Lit and Film
MTWRF 1:00pm – 4:25pm, Pafford 308, Session I
Into the Wild: Romanticism
The term Romanticism may be applied to a specific historical era in literary history or to an ideology, or phenomenon, or worldview with specific implications for issues of selfhood, politics, and artistic expression. In this intensive interdisciplinary course, we will use Fight Club, Into the Wild (and Eddie Vedder’s soundtrack to the film), and Il Postino as film anchors for our study of Romanticism(s) in art and literature. Student-selected music will be an additional source text for this class.
XIDS 2100-02D: Medievalism
F 10:00am – 11:50am, Pafford 102, Session II
XIDS 2100-03: Representing American Women
MTWRF 3-5:15, Pafford 306 , Session IV
Through the analysis of representations in the literary and visual arts of both the high and popular cultures, this course will examine a range of identities, images and ideologies associated with the American woman from the early Republic to the modern period.
Texts: Chopin, The Awakening, Fern, Ruth Hall, Foster, The Coquette, Jacobs, Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl; James, Daisy Miller.
Requirements: Active and informed participation in class discussion, two midterm exams, and a group media report