Course Offerings - Catalog 2010-11

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English and Creative Writing

Division of Humanities

The purpose of the major program in English is to produce citizens of sympathetic imagination who are able to draw upon a store of literary knowledge and capable of independent critical thinking and writing. The program offers a major and minor in Engish and a minor in creative writing.

The program offers courses in British and American literature and in creative writing. In addition to introductory courses at the first-year/sophomore level, the program's offerings in literature include courses on such authors as Chaucer, Shakespeare, Melville, Dickinson, Faulkner, and Woolf, and on such topics as Southern literature, poetry by women, Irish literature, early English novels, the Gothic, modern poetry, Shakespeare and film, and U.S. literature of the Great Depression. Creative writing courses include introductions to the writing of poetry and fiction, as well as more advanced classes. Except for junior and senior seminars, all English courses are open to all students without special permission.


Philip White (chair), Helen Emmitt, John Kinkade, Mark Lucas, Dan Manheim, Abigail Manzella, Heather Morton, Mark Rasmussen, Milton Reigelman, Lisa Williams (Director of Creative Writing)


Chelsea Apple, Elyse Elliott

Requirements for the Major

ENG 210, 220, 230;
ENG 301 or 302;
One course each selected from ENG 310-339. 340-369, 370-399 (One of these courses must be a seminar taken during the junior year and numbered 330-339, 360-369, or 390-399);
One additional 300-level ENG course;
ENG 500

Requirements for the English Minor

Three courses chosen from among ENG 210, 220, 230, and either 301 or 302;
Two 300-level ENG courses numbered 303 or higher

Requirements for the Creative Writing Minor

Four creative writing courses, chosen from among FRS 121, FRS 176, DRA 330, CRW 140, 150, 240, 245, 250, 280, or other creative writing courses approved by the English program. CRW 240 and 280 may be repeated for credit toward the minor;
One literature course in English

Note: ENG 500 is open to senior English majors only; courses numberd 330-39, 360-69, and 390-99 are open to English majors as well as to English minors with permission of the instructor. All other ENG courses are open to non-majors without special permission.

English Courses

ENG 205 Children’s and Adolescent Literature
An introductory course to the field of juvenile literature intended for prospective teachers stressing the various genres of children's and adolescent literature, critical analysis of both selected texts and illustrations, and the teaching of juvenile literature in the K-12 classroom.

ENG 210, 220 British Literature-I, II
Survey of major works of British literature from the medieval period to the 20th century, with emphasis upon understanding and evaluating literary works in their historical and cultural backgrounds. Together with ENG 230, provides a general introduction to prosody, the vocabulary of literary analysis, and the varieties of literary criticism.

ENG 230 American Literature
Survey of major works of American literature from its beginnings to the 20th century, with emphasis upon understanding and evaluating literary works in their historical and cultural backgrounds. Together with ENG 210, 220, provides a general introduction to prosody, the vocabulary of literary analysis, and the varieties of literary criticism.

ENG 235 Topics in Literature in Translation

ENG 235 Conversations on European Literature
A course on the masterpieces of European prose fiction from the Renaissance to the 20th century including Montaigne, Cervantes, Goethe, Tolstoy and Proust; students think for themselves in managing the discussion and interpretation of foreign literature in a foreign setting; the teacher's role is to summarize discussion, to ask for the definition of terms, and to coach designated discussion leaders in advance of class. Conducted in Strasbourg.

ENG 301 Shakespeare-I
A study of the development of Shakespeare as dramatist, with emphasis on the histories and romantic comedies. (Also listed as DRA 331.)

ENG 302 Shakespeare-II
A study of the mature Shakespeare, with emphasis on the later tragedies and romances. (Also listed as DRA 332.)

ENG 305 Literary Criticism: Theory and Practice
What is literature? What is literature good for? What makes a work of literature good? What does it mean to “interpret” a literary work? What makes a particular interpretation good? These are some of the great questions addressed by literary theory, from Plato to the present. In this course we will read and discuss some classic responses to these questions, and we will consider as well such recent critical approaches as the New Criticism, reader response theory, Marxist criticism, feminist criticism, psychoanalytic criticism, structuralism, deconstruction, new historicism, and cultural studies. The course has two aims: first, to help us become more aware of what we do, and why we do it, when we study literature; and, second, to help us write better literary criticism ourselves, as we apply a range of methods to the works we study.

ENG 310-339 Studies in Medieval and Renaissance Literature
Study of topics, authors, and genres within the medieval and Renaissance periods. Courses numbered 330-39 are limited-enrollment seminars. The 2009-2010 topics are listed below.

ENG 313 Chaucer
Selected works from Chaucer's early poetry, Troilus and Criseyde, and The Caturbury Tales, read in Middle English.

ENG 314 Paradise Lost
An intensive study of Milton's Paradise Lost.

ENG 340-369 Studies in Eighteenth and Nineteenth-Century Literature
Study of topics, authors, and genres within the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. Courses numbered 360-69 are limited-enrollment seminars. The 2009-2010 topics are listed below.

ENG 347 18th-Century Literature
A study of Neoclassical poetry, fiction, drama, and nonfiction prose, including works by Swift, Pope, Fielding, Sheridan, Johnson and Austen.

ENG 348 Victorian Characters
Victorians perfected the art of presenting rich, psychologically-complex characters. They are also a culture obsessed by the development of individual character, increasingly under threat by the conformist tendencies of modern industrial culture. In this course, students study the difference and interaction between “flat” and “round” characters--Dr. Watson and Sherlock Holmes, for example; interior and exterior representations of character; and the question of individuality. Included in the reading are Adam Bede , Little Dorrit , the poetry of Robert Browning and Lord Tennyson, J. S. Mill's On Liberty , and Sherlock Holmes stories.

ENG 368 Marriage and Maturity in the 19th-Century Novel
The bildungsroman (novel of development) and the domestic plot were the two dominant narrative forms in the nineteenth century. But how do the stories of growing up and getting married fit together? More specifically, how does a novel suggest genuine development in a life-story that ends at early adulthood? Or alternatively, how can a protagonist grow past the unfortunate marriage choice that signaled his early immaturity? This course takes up four justly famous nineteenth-century novels, Emma, David Copperfield, Great Expectations, and Portrait of a Lady, to explore the range of issues these plots raise for the protagonist: class identity, professional development, social discernment, and self-knowledge.

ENG 370-99 Studies in Twentieth-Century Literature
Study of topics, authors, and genres within the twentieth century. Courses numbered 390-99 are limited-enrollment seminars.

ENG 373 Southern Literary Renaissance
An exploration of the literature of the modern South. Works by William Faulkner, Robert Penn Warren, Eudora Welty, Zora Neale Hurston, Katherine Anne Porter, Tennessee Williams, Flannery O'Connor and others.

ENG 375 Flannery O'Connor
A study of the life and work of the 20th-century American short story writer Flannery O'Connor. Readings include Wise Blood, selected letters, and all of O'Connor's short stories.

ENG 395 World Poetry
A reading of poets from around the world including Tu Fu, Charles Baudelaire, Anna Akhmatova, Cesare Pavese, Paul Celan, Rafael Alberti, Carlos Drummond de Andrade, Christopher Okigbo, Carol Ann Duffy, Gillian Allnut, Philip Levine and others.

ENG 396 Contemporary British Literature
A study of novels, short fiction, poetry and drama by British and Commonwealth writers since World War II.

ENG 500 Senior Seminar
The senior seminar topics for 2009-2010 were: Irish Literature and Faulkner.

Creative Writing Courses

CRW 140 Fundamentals of Poetry Writing
A workshop class devoted to the writing of poetry and to relevant readings designed to guide and inspire the beginning writer.

CRW 150 Fundamentals of Fiction Writing
A workshop class devoted to the writing of short stories and to relevant readings designed to guide and inspire the beginning fiction writer.

CRW 160 Fundamentals of Creative Non-Fiction
A workshop class. Students study and try their hand at a variety of non-fiction genres including memoir, the review, the essay, travel and food writing, humor writing, the editorial, nature writing, and others. We will read writers from different periods including (among others) David Sedaris, Michel de Montaigne, Sir Thomas Browne, Virginia Woolf, Oliver Sacks, Stephen Jay Gould, W.G. Sebald, Annie Dillard, Joan Didion, Edward Abbey, Edward Hoagland, Pier Paolo Pasolini, and Jo Ann Beard, as well as selections from the most recent Best American Essays anthology.

CRW 240 Intermediate Poetry Writing
A workshop class. Students write approximately a poem a week to be workshopped by class members and then revised. Reading and discussion of several new volumes of poetry by contemporary poets. Prerequisite: ENG 140 or FRS 121 or ENG 250 or permission of the instructor. May be repeated for additional credit.

CRW 245 Intermediate Fiction Writing
This course builds upon the fundamentals of fiction writing. Students advance their understanding of writing fiction through the composition of their own short stories, through minor project work in an alternative genre and through the examination of a range of established writers' approaches to the form, structure, and function of the short story. Prerequisite: ENG 150 or permission of the instructor.

CRW 250 Poetic Forms: History and Practice
Discussion of poetic forms including the sonnet, sestina, villanelle, prose poem, free verse, and syllabic poetry (among others), with creative assignments. Designed to benefit writers wishing to enrich their knowledge of the craft and their creative abilities, as well as students of literature interested in poetry's history and technical aspects.

CRW 280 Creative Writing: Fiction or Poetry
Practice in the writing of short fiction or poetry, under the guidance of a visiting writer-in-residence. Offered on a Pass/Unsatisfactory basis only. May be repeated for additional credit.