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Graduate Course Descriptions Spring 2010

With the instructor’s permission, a limited number of undergraduates with a GPA of 3.5 or higher may
enroll in graduate courses, which have ENG-L (except L501 and L502), ENG-W or CMLT-C designations at the 500 and 600 level.


ENG- G 552 – Linguistics and the Teacher of English (4 cr.) Instructor: Bobby Meyer-Lee
Class Number 26103 TR 7:00 – 8:15 P

(This course combined with ENG-G 302)
This course will involve an intensive study of the grammar of Modern English—not prescriptive grammar in the sense of “correct English,” but rather descriptive grammar in the sense of the inner workings,
or syntactic and morphological mechanisms, of the living language that we actually speak and write. We will also read about and discuss the social constructions of Standard and Non-Standard English, and the implications of these constructions for individual identity and teaching. Graduate students enrolled in ENG-G 552 will—in addition to completing all work in the undergraduate course—complete assignments addressing other aspects of linguistics (for example, phonology), meet several times for an extra hour after class to discuss these assignments, and complete a significant end-of-term project.

ENG-L 501 – Professional Scholarship in Literature ( 4 cr.) Instructor: Karen Gindele
Class Number 26106 T 5:30 – 8:00 P
Topic: From Error to Uncertainty


First, fear not that the subtitle might indicate our path; it refers instead to one of many “progresses”
we might chart from the late nineteenth century to the twenty-first. Our central thematic concern will be how novels engage with epistemological questions what can be known about the self and the world and we will only be able to examine a few works. We will consider the shift in attitudes towards knowledge, the terms in which it can be shaped and shapes the self, its efficacy, and its scope, and we’ll also think about how it enables or undermines its subjects in the public and/or political sphere as well as in personal relations. The core of these works will probably be George Eliot’s Middlemarch, Conrad’s Under Western Eyes, and Ondaatje’s Anil’s Ghost.

Regarding methods, students will refine skills in conducting research that frames and develops particular areas of inquiry with an eye to writing scholarly papers. Our focus will not be on the publishing process but on shaping the best possible argument and engaging with other critics in this arena. We will also read literary and cultural theory that has become an assumed context in which to think critically about literature. There will be at least two substantial papers‹one of ten pages to correspond to the conference paper, and one of fifteen to twenty to correspond to the journal article as well as several short, less formal papers. Students will present their work to the class and each will lead discussion on one section of one of the novels.

ENG-L 680 – Special Topics: Literary Study and Theory (4 cr.)
Class Number 26107 M 7:00 – 9:30 P Instructor: Chu He
Topic: Post-Colonial Lit & Theory

This course is an introduction to postcolonial theory and literature. Works by Fanon, Said, Bhabha, Spivak, Lloyd, and other important postcolonial critics will lead us to questions such as how post-colonialism came into being, what issues and concerns it has, what relationship there is among its different schools and regions, what impact it has on politics, culture, and literature, etc. Discussion of those questions will help us to understand the key terms and concepts in this post-modern intellectual discourse, for example, colonialism, post-colonialism, decolonization, subaltern, hybridity, mimicry, nationalism, etc. With the help of theory, we will also analyze postcolonial literature, that is, literature from countries that were once colonies, and study how they deal with their colonial past, hybrid present, and difficult decolonization.

ENG-L 680/30731 – will convert to:
CMLT-C 694 – The Screenplay (4 cr.)
Class Number….. W 7:00-9:30 P Instructor: Elaine Roth

LBST-D 501 – Humanities Seminar (3 cr.)
Class Number 25971 R 7:00 – 9:30 P Instructor: Anne Magnan-Park

[Note: while this course is primarily intended for students in the Master of Liberal Studies program, non-MLS students interested in the topic should consult with the instructor to see whether it might be a good choice for them, too.]
Topic: Translation as Metaphor: An Interdisciplinary Journey
The task of the literary translator is similar in nature to that of the interdisciplinary scholar in that it deals in the delicate business of border crossing. Indeed, the interdisciplinary scholar devises and crosses constructive bridges from one academic discipline to another while the literary translator strives to safely carry the unique voice of a particular author across cultural and linguistic boundaries. The journeys they both undertake require credentials and the mastery of a set of sharpened tools in more than one discipline/culture, as well as the development of a personal philosophy that allow them to make consistent and productive choices in the hope of proposing a credible solution to a complex issue. This course is designed to introduce you to the history, theory, and practice of literary translation and to use that knowledge to investigate the disciplines of literary and film studies. Some of the questions we may ask are: what are the disciplines in which one needs to engage to interpret a literary text or a film, and most specifically a text or film dealing with postcolonial issues? How do writers and filmmakers translate the clash of two specific cultures in their works? To what extent can one say that translators are creators, bridge builders who invent alternative ways of crossing cultural chasms? We will mostly focus on New Zealand culture, literature, and cinema, namely the works of Patricia Grace (“A Way of Talking,” “Parade,” “Butterflies,” among others), Margaret Mahy (“The Bridge Builder”), Alice Tawhai (Festival of Miracles), Peter Jackson (Heavenly Creatures), and Lee Tamahori (Once were Warriors). Other authors and filmmakers will also be considered, such as Indian American fiction writer Jhumpa Lahiri (Interpreter of Maladies), Franco-Chinese poet Francois Cheng (poems), and Moroccan filmmaker Faouzi Bensaidi (La Falaise). The knowledge of a foreign language is not required but the desire to embrace a foreign culture is the secret decoder ring to success for this course!

LBST-D 501 – Humanities Seminar (3 cr.)
Class Number 4342 W 7:00 – 9:30 P Instructor: April Lidinsky
[Note: while this course is primarily intended for students in the Master of Liberal Studies program, non-MLS students interested in the topic should consult with the instructor to see whether it might be a good choice for them, too.]
Topic: The Harlem Renaissance – The Culture and Politics of a Creative Age
This course will be an immersion in the decades of artistic production known as the "New Negro Movement," and later as the “Harlem Renaissance” -- from roughly 1919 to 1940. The incredible literary and creative production of this age marks the first collective artistic expression of African Americans. In the midst of legalized segregation and heightened anti-black violence, African Americans in larger numbers than ever in American history responded by reclaiming the right to represent themselves in a wide range of artistic and political media. In this course, we will examine the political, cultural and historical conditions that produced this representational revolution, the effects of which were felt around the world and have since left a rich cultural legacy that continues to shape American culture today. We will analyze literary and political texts, as well as music, lyrics, film, and visual arts. Key issues we will explore include discourses of race and identity; cultural nationalism and national culture; sexualities; modernist aesthetics and modern black aesthetics. This will be a discussion course. Students will write frequent short analytical pieces, and two longer researched essays on topics of individual interest within the scope of the course. Beyond the course content, we will also focus on effective writing processes, productive workshop feedback, research strategies, and the art of the "work in progress" research talk.