2017 - Reading Popular Culture
"If Shakespeare were alive today, he'd be writing for television." This course addresses the many forms of popular culture, including television, music, popular fiction and film, urban myths, and celebrities. The aim of this course is to encourage students to develop a critical understanding of all aspects of popular culture. 3 hours, 1.0 course
|Fall/Winter||2017 / 001||N. Joseph||Syllabus|
|Fall/Winter||2017 / 002 (Evening)||S. Bruhm||Syllabus|
2018A - The Culture of Leadership I: Heroes, Tyrants, Celebrities
This course addresses the complex nature of leadership represented in key works of literature and culture, from Malory to Alice Munro, Shakespeare to David Mamet. We will focus on the ethical dilemmas and moral choices faced by leaders to ask what role a leader plays: hero, manager, thinker, strategist, artist, figurehead, authority? 3 hours, 0.5 course
|Fall 2015||2018A / 001 (Evening)||L. Reave||Syllabus|
2033E - Children’s Literature
Readings from significant books written for children, selected primarily for literary quality. Some attention will be given to the historic evolution of "Children's Literature" as a separate class, but the principal aim of the course will be to consider the nature and development of the two major genres: nonsense verse and romance. 2 lecture hours, 1tutorial hour. 1.0 course
|Fall/Winter||2033E / 001||G. Ceraldi||Syllabus|
|Fall/Winter||2033E / 002 (Evening)||G. Ceraldi||Syllabus|
|Fall/Winter||2033E / 650 (Online)||C. Suranyi||Syllabus|
2041F - Fall Theatre Production: Middleton's Women Beware Women
In this course, students participating in the Department of English and Writing Studies' Fall Theatre Production (Middleton's Women Beware Women) explore in theory and practice approaches to text in performance. Only students working as an actor, director, stage manager, assistant stage manager, lighting, set or costume designer may enroll. Please note: Auditions took place April 7, 8 and 9, 2015. Permission of the Chair of Undergraduate Studies required to enroll. 0.5 course.
|Fall 2015||2041F / 001||J. Devereux||Syllabus|
2071G - Speculative Fiction: Science Fiction
From Mary Shelley's Frankenstein to Ridley Scott's Blade Runner, a consideration of the history and development of science fiction. Will include science fiction themes such as the Other, new technologies, chaos theory, cybernetics, paradoxes of space/time travel, first contact, and alien worlds. 3 lecture hours, 0.5 course.
|Winter 2016||2071G / 001 (Evening)||J. Kelly||Syllabus|
|Winter 2016||2071G / 650 (Online)||J. Kelly||Syllabus|
2072F - Speculative Fiction: Fantasy
A study of the purposes and historical origins of fantasy, and modern developments in fantasy: alternate worlds, horror or ghost stories, sword & sorcery, heroic fantasy. May include writers such as Tolkien, Simmons, Peake, Herbert, Beagle, Rowling. 3 lecture hours, 0.5 course.
|Fall 2015||2072F / 001 (Evening)||J. Kelly||Syllabus|
|Fall 2015||2072F / 650 (Online)||J. Kelly||Syllabus|
2075G - Cultures of Blood
This course examines the contemporary Gothic from the latter half of the 20th century to the present. We will consider novels by Shirley Jackson, J.G. Ballard, Kōji Suzuki, and Toni Morrison, a graphic novel by Charles Burns, stories by Thomas Ligotti, and films like The Ring, Noroi, Rubber Johnny, and The Cabin in the Woods. These texts will be the anchors of our discussion. We will consider how horror and the Gothic interrogate contemporary social, cultural, and personal anxieties; how rapid shifts in technology and architecture have metamorphosed Gothic castles and old monsters into cosmopolitan high-rise living complexes and extreme violence; how ghosts become metaphors for historical trauma; how the nature of reality is, if considered too closely, nihilistically unimaginable and cosmically horrific; how different media operate self-reflexively to ask its audience not only what terrifies us but how we experience that fear. Finally, we will examine why the fear we experience from Gothic and horror fiction is often amusing and commercially successful big entertainment. 3 lecture hours, 0.5 course.
|Winter 2016||2075G / 001 (Evening)||A. Wenaus||Syllabus|
2091G - Special Topics: The Creativity of Madness
This course explores the creativity of madness and the madness of creativity. Starting with an examination of the history of madness and historical and cultural attitudes toward madness, we will address the general equation between madness and creativity through various works of literature and culture as a way of engaging students in the creative (and often chaotic) process of ‘thinking outside of the box’ of accepted cultural, social, and ethical norms of thought and behavior. We will thus explore creativity and of madness as both definitions and symptoms of humanity in order to explore how we often avoid thinking about their more complex nature. We will bring in works and characters primarily from the music and literature to frame the questions and guide conversations. We will approach and assess student comprehension and experience of course material through lectures, tests, reflections, short essays, large and small group discussion, play activities, workshops.
Above all we want students to gain an appreciation of how “play ... is the very essence of thought” and to open themselves to a more compassionate and productive understanding of how madness and creativity are intimately connected – and necessary to the planet’s survival. 3 lecture hours, 0.5 course.
|Winter 2016||2091G / 001||J. Faflak||Description|
2092F - Special Topics: The Many Faces of Harry Potter
This course will examine the Harry Potter series in relation to the multiple genres that it draws on, including the gothic novel, detective fiction, fantasy, adventure, and even the dystopian novel. We will read all seven books alongside other novels and short stories that illustrate the generic conventions Rowling is working with. There will also be opportunity to consider the translation of the series into film. 3 lecture hours, 0.5 course.
|Fall 2015||2092F / 001 (Evening)||G. Ceraldi||Syllabus|