Skip to Content
  • Course Electives

English Literature Electives for Spring 2015

ENG 320 - Global Literatures:  Transnational Spy and Detective Fiction
Upper level elective
 
This course highlights the increasing number of transnational, minority/ethnic, and postcolonial writers who adapt spy, detective, and crime fiction conventions, often transcending presumed boundaries between popular and high culture. In focusing on issues related to identity, “culture,” ethics, human rights, and knowledge construction, we will examine for example, the figure of the spy or detective as observer, immigrant and/or cultural or social “other.” Authors may include Patrick Chamoiseau, Vikram Chandra, Wilkie Collins, Cristina Garcia-Aguilera, Kazuo Ishiguro, Suki Kim, Natsuo Kirino, Chang-Rae Lee, Mario Vargas Llosa, Gabriel García Márquez, Walter Mosley, Haruki Murakami, Yamyang Norbu (rewriting Sherlock Holmes), Michael Ondaatje, and one or more examples from the recently so successful Scandinavian crime fiction genre.  This course counts as an upper-level elective in the English Literature major.
 
Prerequisites for Transnat'l Spy:  Any ENG 100 level course (or CW 210 & CW 220), any 200+ WTNG
Professor:  Dr. Rebecca Karni (rkarni@rwu.edu
Course Meeting Times:  Tues/Friday 2:00 - 3:20pm Spring 2015
 
 
ENG 430 - Special Topics:   J.R.R. Tolkien
Upper level elective

J.R.R. TolkienThis intertextual course (films and novels)  travels to Middle-earth to meet with Gandalf and Samwise Gamgee, Gollum, Legolas, and a cast of thousands.  We will focus on Tolkien's literary and cultural presence: as an icon of the 1960s ecological movement, as admonisher of war, innovator of genre and character, and as a resource for other fantasy writers. Just as Tolkien borrows from Norse mythology, each new generation of writers has borrowed from Tolkien (e.g., Yoda echoes Elvish Sindarin syntactical structure; likewise C.S. Lewis and J.K. Rowling transform elements from Tolkien).  Readings and films will include The Hobbit, The Lord of the Rings trilogy, Tolkien’s Letters, Tree and Leaf, and a wide variety of literary and critical texts.   This course counts as an upper-level elective in the English Literature major.
 

Prerequisites for Tolkien:  Any ENG 100 level course (or CW 210 & CW 220), any 200+ WTNG
Professor:  Dr. Deborah Robinson  (drobinson@rwu.edu)   x3435 or GHH 315
Course Meeting Times: Mon/Thurs 2:00 - 3:20pm Spring 2015
 
 
ENG 110 - Serpents Swords Symbols and Sustainability
Lower level elective

This course analyzes the historical contexts for shifts in literary attitudes toward the environment from around the world and across time. Using the natural world as a point of departure, students learn the universal language of symbols from ancient cultures to the present, as they document and assess the evolution of the relation between human beings and the natural world, once perceived as reciprocal and interdependent, now distinct and isolated. Students analyze interdisciplinary and cross-cultural literary and visual works that address environment and place and the evolution of the relations between the human and non-human both directly (in non-fiction and natural history) and indirectly (in literature and film). This course counts as a lower-level elective  in the English Literature major.

 

No Prerequisites
Professor:  Dr. Deborah Robinson  (drobinson@rwu.edu)   x3435 or GHH 315
Course Meeting Times: Tues/Thurs 11:00am - 12:20pm Spring 2015

 

ASIA 100 - Foundations of Asian Studies
Lower level elective

CAS 330This lower-level introductory course course provides an introduction to the broad historical, cultural, and philosophical events and traditions of this important geopolitical region that includes China, Japan, and Korea among other important states. Students will explore major historical, political, and economic developments, as well as cultural and philosophical underpinnings that characterize the region. The course raises questions about the roles and interactions of Asian countries internationally in the 21st century global context. This course counts as a lower-level elective in the English Literature major.
 

No pre-requisites
Professor:  Dr. Roberta Adams, Associate Dean FCAS  (radams@rwu.edu) GHH 308B
Course Meeting Times: Tues/Thurs 9:30 - 11:00am Spring 2015


English Literature Electives for Fall 2014

ENG 360 - The African American Novel (Studies in Ethnic American Literature)
 
Title Illustration of Native SonThis upper-level English elective course surveys the rich history of the African American novel from its birth in the 1850s through the end of the 20th cnetury.  The reading list will include the following six novels:
  • The Bondswoman's Narrative (1850s) Hannah Craft
  • The Autobiography of an Ex-Colored Man (1913) James Weldon Johnson
  • Their Eyes Were Watching God (1937) Zora Neale Hurston
  • Native Son (140) Richard Wright
  • Invisible Man (1952) Ralph Ellison
  • Beloved (1987) Toni Morrison
 
 
 
 
 
 
Prerequisite:  ENG 100 (or CW 210 and CW 220), 200-level or above Writing Course
Professor:  Dr. James Tackach (jtackach@rwu.edu)
Course Meeting Times:  Thursday only  2:00 - 4:50pm
 
 
 
ENG 300 - "British" Literature III:  The Postwar Novel
 
Title Illustration of Native SonThis course considers the late 20th-century/early 21st-century Britsh novel and examines closely a number of key issues that shaped, as well as contiue to affect, postwar British literature and culure, such as the movement from empire to post-colonialism; the "new internationalism" in British literature; and the role of the most prestigious literay award in Britain, the Man Booker Prize.  We will pay particular attention to the continuously shifting dynaics between the notions of "British," "English," "international," and "globall/world" and the role of the literary marketplace.   
 
 
This upper-level English elective course may be taken either as an elective if you have already taken Brit Lit I and Brit Lit II.  If you have not taken Brit Lit I and Brit Lit II, it may substitute for either one of them.  See your advisor if you have any questions about whether to take this as an elective or as a requirement.
 
Prerequisite:  ENG 100 (or CW 210 and CW 220), any 200-level or above WTNG Course
Professor:  Dr. Rebecca Karni.  If you have any questions, please contact  rkarni@rwuedu
Course Meeting Times:  Tues/Friday  2:00 - 3:20pm
[Note:  This course was incorrectly listed as ENG 270 Brit Lit I in the early version of the course catalogue.]

English Literature Electives for Spring 2014

ENG 299 - The Short Stories of Ernest Hemingway

Ernest HemingwayErnest Hemingway wrote some splendid novels: The Sun Also Rises, A Farewell to Arms, The Old Man and the Sea. But most literary critics suggest that this great American writer’s best work can be found in his short fiction, including the Nick Adams stories and short story masterpieces like “A Clean, Well-Lighted Place” and “Hills Like White Elephants.” This course will focus on Hemingway the short story writer and feature intensively close readings and active discussions of Hemingway’s best short fiction.

Spring 2014
Mon/Thurs 2:00-3:20
Professor James Tackach
Pre-requisites: Enrollment or successful completion of WTNG 102.
If you have any questions, please contact jtackach@rwu.edu

 

ENG 430: Austen and Film

Austen and FilmIs it a truth universally acknowledged for readers of Jane Austen that the book is always better than the movie? Or vice versa? Why are so many Austen novels making it to the “big screen”? What is lost (and what is gained) when this happens? The first 2/3 of this course will closely compare two Austen novels against their companion films (drawing on introductory film studies texts) to analyze how narrative, thematic, and/or ideological emphases shift from text to film. The first comparisons will include Pride and Prejudice (the 1813 novel, the 1995 BBC 6 hr miniseries, and the 2005 Kiera Knightly film). The second comparison will include an Austen novel paired with another film (to be chosen by class vote). The final third of the course each student will pair a DIFFERENT novel with its adaptation to produce a thesis driven comparison. The final project for the course will showcase these comparisons university wide. If you love Jane Austen (or simply want to learn more about her novels and the films that translate them), you are more than welcome. This course is reading and writing intensive. (Final paper 10-12 pages.)

Spring 2014
Thursdays 5:00 - 8:00pm
Associate Professor Meg Case
Pre-requisites: ENG 100 (or CW 210 and CW 220) and a 200-level WTNG course, or by permission of instructor.
If you have any questions, please contact mcase@rwu.edu


English Literature Electives for Fall 2013

These courses count toward the English Major as Elective Courses.


ENG 299 - World Short Story

World Short StoryThe short story is a flexible art form, embraced by writers around the world. In this class, we study the form: what makes a short story? how does an author pack so much into a few pages? And we will read 4-8 stories a week, from the “classics” of the 19th and 20th centuries, to some written in the past ten years. Authors may include Chekhov, Tolstoy, De Maupassant, Rilke, Kafka, Pirandello, Kipling, O. Henry, Joyce, Borges, Lu Xun, Kawabata, Ding Ling, Allende, Garcia Marquez, Mahfouz, Mukherjee, Ha Jin, Murakami, Achebe, Mo Yan, Lahiri, Yoshimoto, Nadiya, Mhute, among many others.

Fall 2013 Tues/Thurs 12:30-1:50
Associate Dean, Professor Roberta Adams
If you have any questions, please contact Professor Adams (radams@rwu.edu)

ENG 320 - The “Global” or “World Novel”: Affect, Ethics, Aesthetics, Politics

Global of World NovelEver since Johann W. von Goethe proclaimed that the epoch of Weltliteratur (world literature) is at hand, authors, critics, and general readers alike have advocated the “world” or “global novel.” This is especially true for the period of the late 20th and early 21st centuries with its emphasis on globalization in general and the globalizing humanities more particularly. But what exactly does this advocacy for the “world” or “global novel” presuppose and promote? It is tied inextricably to multifaceted questions related to genre, affect, ethics, aesthetics, politics (to name a few), which this course aims to examine.

More than any other genre, the novel has a long-standing history of being both criticized and praised for its perceived political, ethical, social, and aesthetic affinities and affiliations. In reading comparatively late 20th- and early 21st-century novels by Anglophone, Asian American, French/Francophone, German, Japanese, Sinophone, and Indian authors (while also paying attention to the historical development of the notion of “world”/”global novel” and the post-1945 context), we will be considering the particular constellations of these dimensions that globalization has brought about. In so doing, our focus will be on the ways in which the selected authors depict “the global” or “the world” in relation to culture, communities, people, and fictional characters; the never straightforward relationships to “real” “global” or “world” formations that they in this way establish; as well as on the implications that the chosen narrative forms and styles might have for global readerships. We will also examine carefully how notions of the “world”/”global novel” relate to various conceptions of “world,” “globe,” “hemisphere,” and “planet.”

Readings include a selection of relevant critical essays as well as novels by Albert Camus, Dai Sijie, Enchi Fumiko, Amitav Ghosh, Kazuo Ishiguro, Chang-Rae Lee, Ruth Ozeki, and W.G. Sebald.

Fall 2013
Tues/Fri 2:00 - 3:30
Professor Rebecca Karni
If you have any questions, please contact Professor Karni (rkarni@rwu.edu)

ENG 430: The Bible in/and Literature

Bible in/and Literature
Depiction of Lilith in the Burney Relief

Whether we’re reading Chaucer, Dante, Shakespeare, Faulkner, Hemingway, Dickens, Austen, Bronte, Tolkien, or Rowling, our knowledge of both the Bible and the “Judeo-Christian tradition” directly affects our ability to recognize the artists’ thematic use of biblical allusions. Our course focuses on key Concepts, Stories, Rituals and Symbols, including the origin of Satan, The Last Supper, wedding ceremonies, the seven vices and virtues, Noah’s Ark, the Passion of Christ, the apple, Lilith (image at left) and much more. The course will also orient students to important geographical and historical contexts including Jersusalem, the Land of Canaan, and Babylon as well as the "heretical" gospels, Gnosticism, and the Crusades and much more (see attached flyer). Summer reading is required and will include Dan Brown’s Angels and Demons and The DaVinci Code. Students will also read J.C. Coopers’ An Illustrated Encyclopaedia of Traditional Symbols. And, of course, The Bible (King James Version).

Fall 2013
Thursdays 2:00 to 4:50pm
Offered by Professor D. Robinson

For more information, please contact Prof. Robinson at x3435 or via email at drobinson@rwu.edu.


English Literature Electives for Spring 2013

ENG 320 - Good Asian/Bad Asian: Radicals, Outcasts, and Exiles

Good Asian/Bad Asian: Radicals, Outcasts, and ExilesThe globalized discourse of the “Asian Century” has been consecrated by the growing popularity of mainstream cultural forms and media, exemplified by Indian Bollywood, Japanese Anime and Manga, and the Korean Wave from the 1990’s to the present. Mainstream representations of Asian otherness is also illustrated through Hollywood films like Lost in Translation, The Last Samurai, Kill Bill, the upcoming 47 Ronin, as well as through musical productions such as Madam Butterfly and Miss Saigon, among others. While the international visibility of Asia has brought an awareness to its diversity, the question remains whether the cultural forms described above can build what the scholar Longxi Zhang calls the “cultural homogeneity” within the disjunctive spaces of transnational culture or if such conceptions continue to produce racialized depictions and partial truths, what Samir Amin argues symbolizes the “inverted Eurocentrism” operating at the core of globalization.

Keeping in mind the above description, this course will investigate the counter-discourse of Asian otherness in the literature, theory, and film of the 20th/21st centuries through a comparative lens. Some of the key questions this course will address are: What are the predominant ideologies of the “Asian Century” and how do they function in the context of globalized cultural discourse? What is Asian postcoloniality and “Third Worldism?” How does Eurocentric universality, the ideology of globalized capital, continue to shape the locus of struggle for defining Asia beyond its constrained singularity? Finally, how do contrapuntal “readings” re-historicize the limits and possibilities of our understanding of Asian cultural formations and thus pave the way for the recognition of what Gayatri Spivak labels “Other Asias?” Some of the authors we will read are: Lau She, Mahasweta Devi, Arundhati Roy, Nakagami Kenji, Akira Yoshimura, Mulk Raj Anand, Wong Phui Nam, and Carlos Bulosan; theoretical readings by Gayatri Spivak, Rey Chow, Vijay Prashad, Arundhati Roy, Tani Barlow, Trinh T. Minh-ha, and E. San Juan, Jr.; films by Jean-Luc Godard, Bernardo Bertolucci, Itami Juzo, Kang Je-Gyu, Jia Zhangke, and Mira Nair.

Spring 2013
Offered by Visiting Professor John Maerhofer
If you have any questions, please contact Professor Maerhofer (jmaerhofer@rwu.edu)

ENG 430 - The Middle Ages

The Middle AgesCourtly lovers and mystics, wikked wives and lovesick swains, crooked churchmen and peerless knights—the literature of the Middle Ages contains all these and more. This period, which falls between the decline of the Roman Empire (with the temporary loss of the Classical literature of Greece and Rome) and the new political and artistic forms of the Renaissance, saw the rise of the first really great English writers, of a native English drama, and an intense interchange of ideas between the British Isles and the European continent. This introduction to the literature of the late Middle Ages (c. 1200-1500) in the western world provides a small sample of the wealth of texts from this period, primarily from the British Isles and France. Possible readings include texts from the Arthurian legends (the romances of Chretien de Troyes, the lais of Marie de France, Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, Malory’s Morte Darthur); some of Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales and short poems; morality and mystery plays, selections from allegories such as Piers Plowman; women mystics, such as Julian of Norwich and Hildegard of Bingen, and something by Christine de Pisan, the first western woman to support herself by her writings. We’ll look at relationships among religion, art, music, and literature, and get some sense of daily life. Except for Chaucer and the plays, most texts are read in modernized English or in translation.

Spring 2013
Tues/Thurs 9:30-10:50
Offered by Professor Roberta Adams
If you have any questions, please contact Professor Adams (radams@rwu.edu)


English Literature Electives for Fall 2012

ENG 320 - Postcolonial Drama and Film: 1962 to the Contemporary Period

 Postcolonial Drama and FilmAccording to Barbara Harlow, “the struggle over the historical and culture record” in the formation of the postcolonial society is equally important to the political resistance against colonialism and the imperialist project. The victory in 1962 by the Front de Libération Nationale in Algeria against French colonialism was not only symbolic of the internationalist breadth of anti-imperialism and nationalist liberation, but also revealed what Vijay Prashad calls the "cultural confidence" of Third World artists, writers, and intellectuals who sought to reform the contours of the postcolony through cultural production. Third World revolutionary discourse was central to the awakening of political consciousness against colonial racism and exploitation in the period of decolonization and continues to influence models of self-determination like the Arab Spring, among other contemporary movements.

Keeping in mind the historico-theoretical framework above, this course will analyze aspects of dramatic works and films from the 1960’s to the contemporary period that document the expanding configurations of postcoloniality and the question of Third World aesthetics and politics. Some of the issues this course intends to address are: theatrical and visual representations of anticolonial resistance and decolonization; Eurocentrism and the formations of cultural imperialism; race and gender in postcolonial/global culture; violence and its systemic relations; the politics of locality and globalization; and the aesthetic and political responses to the “new” imperialism and its ever-increasing hegemony. Among the authors we may read and discuss are: Derek Walcott, Wole Soyinka, Maishe Maponya, Girish Karnad, and Kee Thuan Chye; films by Gillo Pontecorvo, Ousamne Sembene, Hany Abu-Assad, Euzhan Palcy, and Souleymane Cissé; and theoretical texts by Edward Said, Robert Young, Gayatri Spivak, and Frantz Fanon.

Fall 2012
Offered by Visiting Professor John Maerhofer
If you have any questions, please contact Professor Maerhofer (jmaerhofer@rwu.edu)

ENG 430 - J.R.R. Tolkien

J.R.R. TolkienLately, lonely, misunderstood vampires; Hogwartian wizards; even humble sons of Titans have been satisfying our appetite for "fantasy"! I thought it was time to resurrect little Bilbo Baggins and the Gang!
So-o-o-o . . .

Tolkien’s Back!!! And we’ve got him!
We’ll travel to Middle-earth . . . there to meet with Gandalf and Samwise Gamgee, Gollum and the Ents, Elrond and Shelob, Legolas and . . . a cast of thousands.

 

 

Our intertextual study (films and novels) will focus on:

  1. (Tolkien as a cultural voice: as an icon of the 1960’s American ecological movement, now echoed today in the concept of Sustainability; on his commentary on “the machine” and its horrific consequences on the fate of both the natural world and of human beings; on his admonishment against war; on the nature of the modern hero.
  2. Tolkien as a literary voice: as a resource for other modern and contemporary fantasy writers. Just as Tolkien took from Norse mythology and the Bible, each new generation of writers has taken from him. (Just listen to Yoda speak and you’ll hear echoes of the Elvish Sindarin syntactical structure!!) His dynamic Middle-earth--its imaginary landscapes and maps, its magical characters, its myriad languages—informs both images and themes in the works of his fellow Inkling, C. S. Lewis, and J. K. Rowling as they examine the tension between one’s responsibilities to one’s self and to an ideal greater than that self; the human need for "otherworldliness"; heroic characteristics and their tragic consequences; the eternal war between beneficent and malignant powers; the ideal of the fellowship.

Readings and Films: The Hobbit, The Lord of the Rings, Tolkien’s Letters, Tree and Leaf, among other various and sundries . We’ll also view several films.

Requirements: 30-minute oral presentation + outline, 3 4- to 6-page papers, and a final project.

Fall 2012
Offered by Professor Deborah Robinson
If you have any questions, please contact Professor Robinson (x 3435) or GHH 315.


English Literature Electives for Spring 2012

Advanced Literary Theory

Advanced Literary TheoryThis course will help students dissect, dissolve, assimilate, simulate, rearrange, and run circles around the Borgesian Aleph that is literary theory. Reading original texts from early metaphysical thinkers, through the rise of hermeneutics, to the world of post-post-Œs, students will practice seeing through smoke, mapping paradigms, developing comparative regimes, whipping epistemology, questioning canons, uprooting rhizomes, navigating libidinal economies, and generally thinking theory through literature and literature through theory. Course readings include seminal texts of literary theory from Plato to Donna J. Haraway. The first part of the course focuses on classical texts of literary theory. Authors will likely include Plato, Aristotle, Horace, Sir Phillip Sidney, Chladenius, Schleiermacher, Marx. The second part of the course focuses on contemporary theorists, such as Soseki, Althusser, Lyotard, Said, Spivak, Bhabha, Derrida, Bourdieu, Haraway, and Deleuze. Students produce a professional quality final paper working directly with one or more theorists. Bring a pencil.

Spring 2012

Offered by Professor Jordan Yamaji Smith
If you have questions, please contact Jordan Smith at jasmith@rwu.edu  

ENG 301: Contemporary American Literature

Contemporary American LiteratureExamines American fiction, poetry, drama, and creative nonfiction of the last half of the 20th and 21st centuries. This course devotes considerable attention to the literary contributions of conemporary women, African Americans, Native Ameircans and oter groups outside the American literary mainstream.

Spring 2012
Offered by Profs. J. Tackach from the English Literature program and Renee Soto from the Creative Writing Program

 

 

ASIA 100 - Foundations of Asian Studies

CAS 330THIS COURSE WILL COUNT AS AN ELECTIVE COURSE FOR ENGLISH MAJORS AT THE 100 LEVEL. (It will not satisfy the 300/400 level requirement.)

This course is in a separate section of the course catalogue and might be difficult to find under ASIA 100. The five digit catalogue number for registration is 111000

Building on a basis in the history and culture of the region, faculty from across the campus will be invited to provide suggested readings and guest lectures for this course focused on specific themes or issues (e.g., international trade and business, history, culture, and geography of the region, music, dance, theatre, literature, politics, philosophy, etc.). This course provides an introduction to the broad historical, cultural, and philosophical events and traditions of this important geopolitical region that includes China, Japan, and Korea among other important states. Students will explore major historical, political, and economic developments, as well as cultural and philosophical underpinnings that characterize the region. The course raises questions about the roles and interactions of Asian countries internationally in the 21st century global context.

No pre-requisites

Spring 2012
Offered by Professor Roberta Adams (Assistant Dean, FCAS and English Department Professor)
If you have any questions, please contact Professor Adams by email at radams@rwu.edu


English Literature Electives for Fall 2011

ENG 299 Special Topics: Sports in Literature

Sports in LitThe best sports literature is only superficially about sports; it's about race relations, environmental issues, issues associated with aging, family relationships. Through the lens of sports literature, this course will examine these universal themes. Required readings will include August Wilson's Fences (baseball), Jason Miller's That Championship Season (basketball), Norman Maclean's A River Runs Through It (fishing) and more.

Fall 2011
Monday/Thursday 2:00 to 3:20pm
Offered by Professor James Tackach

For more information, please contact Prof. Tackach at x3234 or via email at jtackach@rwu.edu.

ENG 320 Global Literatures: East Asian Modernities

Global LitThis course examines the rise of modernity, Westernization, and new forms of regional consciousness in modern to contemporary East Asia. Texts from foundational modern writers such as Lu Xun and Natsume Soseki will help us examine literary responses to the upheavals of large-scale cultural transformation of relatively isolated Asian nations to global players; texts from post-war Japan and Korea and Maoist China help us see how political currents of global capital/consumerism and communism interact with evolving commitments to “tradition”; and contemporary texts by Nobel Laureates such as Oe Kenzaburo and Gao Xingjian, or by cutting edge writers of immigrant crime fiction, femme noir, and postmodernist novels will help us see the most current iterations of East Asian literary responses to global events and thought. The course also builds conceptual connections from literary texts to film, art, anime/manga, and music.

Fall 2011
Tuesday/Friday 2:00 to 3:20pm
Offered by Professor Jordan Yamaji Smith

If you have questions, please contact Jordan Smith at oyabaka@ucla.edu.

ENG 430: The Bible in/and Literature

Bible in/and Literature
Depiction of Lilith in the Burney Relief

Whether we’re reading Chaucer, Dante, Shakespeare, Faulkner, Hemingway, Dickens, Austen, Bronte, Tolkien, or Rowling, our knowledge of both the Bible and the “Judeo-Christian tradition” directly affects our ability to recognize the artists’ thematic use of biblical allusions. Our course focuses on key Concepts, Stories, Rituals and Symbols, including the origin of Satan, The Last Supper, wedding ceremonies, the seven vices and virtues, Noah’s Ark, the Passion of Christ, the apple, Lilith (image at left) and much more (see attached flyer). The course will also orient students to important geographical and historical contexts including Jersusalem, the Land of Canaan, and Babylon as well as the "heretical" gospels, Gnosticism, and the Crusades and much more (see attached flyer). Summer reading is required and will include Dan Brown’s Angels and Demons and The DaVinci Code. Students will also read J.C. Coopers’ An Illustrated Encyclopaedia of Traditional Symbols. And, of course, The Bible (King James Version).

Fall 2011
Thursday 2:00 to 4:50pm
Offered by Professor D. Robinson

For more information, please contact Prof. Robinson at x3435 or via email at drobinson@rwu.edu.


English Literature Electives for Spring 2011

Vampires and Witches

Vampires and WitchesIn the light of the plethora of recent texts dealing with vampires and witches lately, this course will study several literary examples, searching for cultural meanings. This course will satisfy the ENG elective at the 300 or above level for both ENG and CW majors.

Pre-requisites: WTNG 102 and WTNG 200, junior level standing, or permission of the instructor.

Spring 2011
Tuesday 2:00 to 4:50pm
Offered by Professor D. Robinson

 

WTNG 301: The Rhetoric of Narrative Storytelling and the Art of Persuasion

The Rhetoric of Narrative"Humans," says rhetorician Walter Fisher, "are essentially storytellers." We invent tall tales, recount fables, spin yarns, report news, spread gossip, write autobiographies, share testimony, make films, broadcast rumors, whisper secrets, draft constitutions, and pen novels. In this course, we will explore how such stories shape our personal identities, allow us to identify with one another, and offer us a means of making sense of the world and our lives. Readings will include fables, fairy tales, parables, narratives of political independence, public testimony, literacy narratives, and stories of your own. This course counts as an ENG elective (300 level or above).

Pre-requisites: WTNG 102 and WTNG 200, or permission of the instructor.

Spring 2011
Monday, Wednesday, and Friday
11:00 to 11:50am
Offered by Assistant Professor James Beitler

If you have any questions, please contact James Beitler by phone (x5663) or via email (jbeitler@rwu.edu)

CAS 330 - Foundations of Asian Studies

CAS 330THIS COURSE WILL COUNT AS AN ELECTIVE COURSE FOR ENGLISH MAJORS AT THE 100 LEVEL. (It will not satisfy the 300/400 level requirement.)

Building on a basis in the history and culture of the region, faculty from across the campus will be invited to provide suggested readings and guest lectures for this course focused on specific themes or issues (e.g., international trade and business, history, culture, and geography of the region, music, dance, theatre, literature, politics, philosophy, etc.). This course provides an introduction to the broad historical, cultural, and philosophical events and traditions of this important geopolitical region that includes China, Japan, and Korea among other important states. Students will explore major historical, political, and economic developments, as well as cultural and philosophical underpinnings that characterize the region. The course raises questions about the roles and interactions of Asian countries internationally in the 21st century global context.

No pre-requisites

Spring 2011
Mondays and Thursdays
2:00 to 3:20pm
Offered by Professor Debra Mulligan (History/American Studies)

If you have any questions, please contact Professor Mulligan by email at dmulligan@rwu.edu


English Literature Electives for Fall 2010

LING 301 - Roots of English

English RootsHave you ever wondered where English came from?
If so, this course is for you!
WITNESS THE BIRTH OF YOUR NATIVE TONGUE!

The course follows the changes experienced by the English language, from its roots in Anglo Saxon dialects through its different stages of development, ending with modern British and American English. The content will include phonological, morphological and syntactic changes. (3 credits) 

This course is open to any student interested in historical linguistics and/or the English language. It is designed to tell the story of how English has changed across the centuries and the causes - both historical and linguistic - that have molded modern English.

Fall 2010
Tuesday and Friday
2:00 to 3:20pm
Offered by Professor Sandra B. Schreffler

If you have any questions, please contact Professor Schreffler by email at sschreffler@rwu.edu, by phone at 401-254-3782, or stop by her office located in Global Heritage Hall, Room 110.

CAS 340 - Foundations of Asian Studies

CAS 330THIS COURSE WILL COUNT AS AN ELECTIVE COURSE FOR ENGLISH MAJORS AT THE 100 LEVEL. (It will not satisfy the 300/400 level requirement.)

Building on a basis in the history and culture of the region, faculty from across the campus will be invited to provide suggested readings and guest lectures for this course focused on specific themes or issues (e.g., international trade and business, history, culture, and geography of the region, music, dance, theatre, literature, politics, philosophy, etc.). This course provides an introduction to the broad historical, cultural, and philosophical events and traditions of this important geopolitical region that includes China, Japan, and Korea among other important states. Students will explore major historical, political, and economic developments, as well as cultural and philosophical underpinnings that characterize the region. The course raises questions about the roles and interactions of Asian countries internationally in the 21st century global context.

Fall 2010
Tuesday and Friday
2:00 to 3:20pm
Offered by Professor Debra Mulligan (History/American Studies)

If you have any questions, please contact Professor Mulligan by email at dmulligan@rwu.edu

ENG 430 - J.R.R. Tolkien

J.R.R. TolkienLately, lonely, misunderstood vampires; Hogwartian wizards; even humble sons of Titans have been satisfying our appetite for "fantasy"! I thought it was time to resurrect little Bilbo Baggins and the Gang!
So-o-o-o . . .

Tolkien’s Back!!! And we’ve got him!
Every Tuesday and Thursday from 12:30 to 1:50, we’ll travel to Middle-earth . . . there to meet with Gandalf and Samwise Gamgee, Gollum and the Ents, Elrond and Shelob, Legolas and...a cast of thousands.

 

Our intertextual study (films and novels) will focus on:

  1. Tolkien as a cultural voice: as an icon of the 1960’s American ecological movement, now echoed today in the concept of Sustainability; on his commentary on “the machine” and its horrific consequences on the fate of both the natural world and of human beings; on his admonishment against war; on the nature of the modern hero.
  2. Tolkien as a literary voice: as a resource for other modern and contemporary fantasy writers. Just as Tolkien took from Norse mythology and the Bible, each new generation of writers has taken from him. (Just listen to Yoda speak and you’ll hear echoes of the Elvish Sindarin syntactical structure!!) His dynamic Middle-earth--its imaginary landscapes and maps, its magical characters, its myriad languages—informs both images and themes in the works of his fellow Inkling, C. S. Lewis, and J. K. Rowling as they examine the tension between one’s responsibilities to one’s self and to an ideal greater than that self; the human need for "otherworldliness"; heroic characteristics and their tragic consequences; the eternal war between beneficent and malignant powers; the ideal of the fellowship.

Readings and Films: The Hobbit, The Lord of the Rings, Tolkien’s Letters, Tree and Leaf, among other various and sundries . We’ll also view several films.

Requirements: 30-minute oral presentation + outline, 3 4- to 6-page papers, and a final project.

Fall 2010
Tuesday and Thursday
12:30 to 1:50pm
Offered by Professor Deborah Robinson

If you have any questions, please contact Professor Robinson (x 3435) or GHH 315.