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Archaic Poetics

Submitted by Anonymous on
20301
40300
=CLCV 27209, CLAS 47209, SLAV 20301/42200
  • Graduate/Undergraduate
  • Spring
  • 2009-2010
Boris (Rodin) Maslov

This seminar investigates the notion of archaic (a.k.a. primitive, folk, sentimental, mythological) poetics, originally formulated by the Romantics, but later pursued by scholars who sought to conceptualize the presumed break between oral literatures of traditional societies, as well as texts produced in Archaic Greece, and modern literary praxis. In this course we will be interested both in the actual lineaments of an archaic poetics and its literary reception in the 19 th -20 th c. Apart from relevant primary sources (Homeric epic, archaic Greek choral lyric, primitivist modernist poetry, etc.), we will discuss works by Fr. Schlegel, Veselovsky, Propp, Levi-Strauss, Bakhtin, Parry, and others.

Jewish Thought and Literature III: The Multilingual Twentieth Century

Submitted by Anonymous on
20401
30401
=JWSC 20006, JWSG 30006, NEHC 20406/30406
  • Graduate/Undergraduate
  • Spring
  • 2009-2010
Na'ama Rokem

This seminar examines one of the most striking dimensions of the modern Hebrew literary canon: it was largely written by non-native speakers. This is true not only for the generation of the revival, but also for following generations and even after the foundation of the state of Israel. While most contemporary Hebrew authors do not fall into this category, the phenomenon has a fascinating afterlife to this day. The seminar thus covers a range of materials that span over a century of literary production. It is designed to give students not familiar with Hebrew literature a sense of the historical trajectory it follows over the twentieth century, while raising a number of theoretical and historical questions. Among the questions that will interest us are: To what extent is the category of the native speaker relevant, or even viable, in the study of literature? What is the role of bilingualism and auto-translation in literary production and literary theory? And how does the case of Zionism and the Hebrew revival compare with other cases of bilingual authorship, such as contemporary Latino-American literature? How has the position of Hebrew in the Jewish cultural sphere evolved? How has Hebrew language learning been tied to other categories such as religion, gender or class, and what are the implications for reading Hebrew literature? Readings will all be made available in translation, with an additional tutorial for readers of Hebrew.

History and Theory of Drama I

Submitted by Anonymous on
20500
30500
=ANST 21200, CLAS 31200, CLCV 21200, ENGL 13800/31000, ISHU 24200/34200
  • Graduate/Undergraduate
  • Autumn
  • 2009-2010
David Bevington

May be taken in sequence with CMLT 20600/30600 or individually. This course is a survey of major trends and theatrical accomplishments in Western drama from the ancient Greeks through the Renaissance: Aeschylus, Sophocles, Euripides, Aristophanes, medieval religious drama, Marlowe, Shakespeare, and Jonson, along with some consideration of dramatic theory by Aristotle, Horace, Sir Philip Sidney, and Dryden. The goal is not to develop acting skill but, rather, the goal is to discover what is at work in the scene and to write up that process in a somewhat informal report. Students have the option of writing essays or putting on short scenes in cooperation with other members of the class. End-of-week workshops, in which individual scenes are read aloud dramatically and discussed, are optional but highly recommended.

History and Theory of Drama II

Submitted by Anonymous on
20600
30600
=ENGL 13900/31100, ISHU 24300/34300
  • Graduate/Undergraduate
  • Winter
  • 2009-2010
David Bevington

May be taken in sequence with CMLT 20500/30500 or individually. This course is a survey of major trends and theatrical accomplishments in Western drama from the late seventeenth century into the twentieth: Molière, Goldsmith, Ibsen, Chekhov, Strindberg, Wilde, Shaw, Brecht, Beckett, and Stoppard. Attention is also paid to theorists of the drama, including Stanislavsky, Artaud, and Grotowski. The goal is not to develop acting skill but, rather, the goal is to discover what is at work in the scene and to write up that process in a somewhat informal report. Students have the option of writing essays or putting on short scenes in cooperation with some other members of the class. End-of-week workshops, in which individual scenes are read aloud dramatically and discussed, are optional but highly recommended.

Shakespeare, Marlowe, Benjamin, and Brecht

Submitted by Anonymous on
20901
30901
=ENGL 16709/36709
  • Graduate/Undergraduate
  • Autumn
  • 2009-2010
Victoria Kahn

In this course, we will read several plays of Shakespeare and Marlowe in relationship to the theoretical writings of two twentieth-century critics, Walter Benjamin and Bertolt Brecht. Why did Benjamin and Brecht think Shakespeare and Marlowe were radical, avant-garde playwrights? What conclusions did they draw from Shakespeare and Marlowe for their own political moment? How were Brecht's own plays and dramatic theory influenced by these earlier writers? Texts will include Shakespeare, Hamlet; Marlowe, Edward II and Tamburlaine; Benjamin, The Origin of German Tragic Drama and Understanding Brecht; Brecht, Selected Plays and his Short Organon for the Theater. For students with an interest in both Renaissance literature and European modernism, as well as a strong interest in literary theory.

The Theatrical Illusion: Corneille, Kushner and the Baroque

Submitted by Anonymous on
21001
31001
=FREN 28000/38000, TAPS 28460
  • Graduate/Undergraduate
  • Winter
  • 2009-2010
Larry Norman

We will explore the Baroque interest in meta-theatricality (the play in the play) by concentrating on Pierre Corneille's 1636 L'illusion comique. The play will be situated in the theatrical, literary and artistic corpus of the seventeenth century, in France (Rotrou, Moliere, Descartes, Poussin) as well as in Spain (Calderon, Velazquez) and beyond. We will also reflect on the contemporary adaptation of baroque theatre, in particular through the Court Theatre's preparation for a production of Tony Kushner's version of Corneille's play. Director Charles Newell will be a guest in the class, and students will be engaged in the dramaturgical process. Reading knowledge of French strongly preferred. Students taking courses for French credit must complete all readings and written work in French.

Contemporary European Philosophy and Religion

Submitted by Anonymous on
21201
31201
=DPVR 40900, PHIL 21209/31209
  • Graduate/Undergraduate
  • Winter
  • 2009-2010
Arnold Davidson

The first part of this course considers Martin Heidegger's critique of humanism and various attempts to formulate alternative versions of humanism. We also study Emmanuel Lévinas' conception of ethics as first philosophy and its effect on political philosophy and philosophy of religion, Jacques Derrida's politics of hospitality and cosmopolitanism, and Pierre Hadot's conception of spiritual exercises and philosophy as a way of life. In the second part of this course, we discuss the status of ethical, political, and religious concepts after the experience of Auschwitz. In addition to Primo Levi's If This Is a Man , other readings may come from Lévinas, Robert Antelme, Sara Kofman, and Hans Jonas. Texts in English and the original.

Prefaces

Submitted by Anonymous on
21501
31501
=PORT 23000/33000, SCTH 30611
  • Graduate/Undergraduate
  • Spring
  • 2009-2010
Miguel Tamen

In the last 2 centuries philosophers and writers have often written prefaces to their own works; many such prefaces have become famous, a few have become infamous. Both traditions include the names of otherwise very different authors such as Hegel and Wittgenstein, or Baudelaire and Frost. Since the functions of prefaces seem to be fairly obvious and well-known, we will not be putting forth any new theory about prefaces. Instead, we will read and discuss in depth some of the best philosophical and literary prefaces written since 1800. A complete list of about 20 texts, which is likely to include most of the names above, and a course packet will be made available in the first session.

Caribbean Fiction: Self-understanding and Exoticism

Submitted by Anonymous on
21801
31801
=FREN 23500/33500
  • Graduate/Undergraduate
  • Spring
  • 2009-2010
Daniel Desormeaux

The Caribbean is often described as enigmatic, uncommon and supernatural. While foreigners assume that the Caribbean is exotic, this course will explore this assumption from a Caribbean perspective. We will examine the links between Caribbean and Old World imagination, the relationship between exoticism and Caribbean notions of superstition, and the way in which the Caribbean fictional universe derives from a variety of cultural myths. The course will be taught in English and all required texts are in English and English translations from French. A weekly session in French will be held for majors and graduate students in French and Comparative Literature.

Tolstoy's War and Peace

Submitted by Anonymous on
22301
32301
=RUSS 22302/32302,HIST 23704,FNDL 27103,ISHU 22304,ENGL 28912/ 32302
  • Graduate/Undergraduate
  • Autumn
  • 2009-2010
Lina Steiner

Written in the wake of the Crimean War (1856) and the emancipation of the serfs (1861), Tolstoy's War and Peace is Russia's most famous national narrative. Tolstoy set his tale during the Napoleonic wars, which coincided with Russia's national awakening. This period witnessed major social and political transformations in Russian society. Some of these epochal changes were still underway at the time when Tolstoy came of age and began to wok on his national epic. By reading War and Peace we not only learn a lot about Russian history and culture, but also witness the creation of a completely original organic work of art. It is a telling fact that Tolstoy called his work a novel-epic—a unique hybrid of several different genres deliberately designed as a riposte to the typical West European novel. This course will focus on War and Peace as a work of literature and a historical document. It is highly recommended for all students interested in Russian and European literature, history and political science, as well as to those majoring in Fundamentals. The course is open to all undergraduates and some graduate students (by instructor's consent). In addition to Tolstoy's War and Peace , we will read several contemporary poems, memoirs, selections from Machiavelli's Art of War, as well as several short essays by Russian and German philosophers including Herder, Humboldt and Chaadaev. All readings, discussion and papers will be in English.

Vico's New Science

Submitted by Anonymous on
22501
32501
=ITAL 22900/32900,FNDL 21408
  • Graduate/Undergraduate
  • Winter
  • 2009-2010
Rocco Rubini

This course offers a close reading of Giambattista Vico's masterpiece, New Science (1744) – a work that sets out to refute all opinions hitherto held about the principles of humanity. Vico, who is acknowledged as the most resolute scourge of any form of rationalism, breathed new life into rhetoric, imagination, poetry, metaphor, history, and philology in order to promote in his readers that originary wonder and pathos which sets human beings on the search for truth. However, Vico argues, the truths that are most available and interesting to us are the ones humanity authored by means of its culture and history-creating activities. For this reason the study of myth and folklore as well as archeology, anthropology, and ethnology must all play a role in the rediscovery of man. The New Science builds an alternative philosophy for a new age and reads like a novel of formation recounting the (hi)story of the entire human race and our divine ancestors. In Vico, a prophetic spirit, one recognizes the fulfillment of the Renaissance, the spokesperson of a particular Enlightenment, the precursor of the Kantian revolution, and the forefather of the philosophy of history (Herder, Hegel, and Marx). The New Science remained a strong source of inspiration in the twentieth century (Cassirer, Gadamer, Berlin, Joyce, Beckett, etc.) and may prove relevant in disclosing our own responsibilities in postmodernity. Course taught in English.

Film Noir: French and American

Submitted by Anonymous on
22901
32901
=ENGL 28911/47214
  • Graduate/Undergraduate
  • Spring
  • 2009-2010
Robert von Hallberg

This course focuses on film noir in a broad sense, including neo-noir. We attend to some of the conventions of the genre in terms of plot, characterization, and cinematography. There is also a thematic focus: How is trust constructed in these films? What are the features of trust that most directly affect political systems? Is trust among men much different from that among men and women in heterosexual relationships? We interpret a set of films as utopian efforts to imagine trusting lives. Films include The Maltese Falcon, The Big Sleep, Kiss Me Deadly, Out of the Past, Touch of Evil, Notorious, Narrow Margin, Blast of Silence, Night and the City, Criss Cross, The Postman Always Rings Twice, Gilda, Double Indemnity, Rififi, Chinatown, LA Confidential, Band of Outsiders, Bob le Flambeur , and Le Samourai .

Lyric Genres from Classical Antiquity to Postmodernism

Submitted by Anonymous on
24501
34501
=CLAS 37109, CLCV 27109, SLAV 24501/34501
  • Graduate/Undergraduate
  • Spring
  • 2009-2010
Boris (Rodin) Maslov

PQ: Texts in English. Optional discussion sessions offered in the original (i.e., Greek, Latin, German, Russian). Moving beyond the modern perception of lyric as a direct expression of the poet's subjectivity, this course confronts the remarkable longevity of poetic genres that have remained in use over centuries and millennia, such as the hymn, ode, pastoral, elegy, epistle, and epigram. What kept these classical genres alive for so long and, conversely, what made them serviceable to poets working in very different cultural milieus? In an effort to develop a theory and a history of Western lyric genres, we sample such poets as Sappho, Horace, Marvell, Hölderlin, Whitman, Mandel'shtam, Brodsky, and Milosz.

Cosmopolitanisms

Submitted by Anonymous on
24901
34901
=ENGL 24305/34901
  • Graduate/Undergraduate
  • Spring
  • 2009-2010
Tamara Chin

This course explores notions of cosmopolitanism in philosophy, historiography, and literature. Topics include ancient world systems, world literature, hospitality, and hybridity. Readings may include Derek Walcott's Omeros, the Hellenistic Life of Aesop, early Chinese prose-poetry, Derrida, Frank, and Spivak.

Humor in Yiddish Literature and Culture

Submitted by Anonymous on
25501
35501
=ENGL 28913/37404, GRMN 25510/35510, YDDH 25510/35510
  • Graduate/Undergraduate
  • Spring
  • 2009-2010
Jan Schwarz

This course will apply various theoretical models of Diaspora literature to the study of Yiddish tales, short stories, monologues, plays, novels and life-writing from the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. Among the topics addressed in the course are Yiddish humor and satire, literary modernism, the classical Yiddish writers' image of the shtetl (small Jewish town in Central and Eastern Europe) and Isaac Bashevis Singer's demon narrators. Readings are by Sh. Y. Abramovitsh, Y.L.Peretz. Scholem-Aleichem, Dovid Bergelson, Der Nister, Jonah Rosenfeld, I.B.Singer, Chaim Grade, Ester Kreytman, Chava Rosenfarb, Yankev Glathsteyn and Sh. Ansky.

Renaissance and Baroque Fairy Tales and their Modern Rewritings

Submitted by Anonymous on
26700
36700
=HCUL 34400, ITAL 26200/36200
  • Graduate/Undergraduate
  • Winter
  • 2009-2010
Armando Maggi

We study the distinctions between myth and fairy tale, and then focus on collections of modern Western European fairy tales, including those by Straparola, Basile and Perrault, in light of their contemporary rewritings of classics (Angela Carter, Calvino, Anne Sexton). We analyze this genre from diverse critical standpoints (e.g., historical, structuralist, psychoanalytic, feminist) through the works of Croce, Propp, Bettelheim and Marie-Louise Von Franz. Class conducted in English.

Owning and Disowning: J. M. Coetzee

Submitted by Anonymous on
26900
46900
=ENGL 28605/48605
  • Graduate/Undergraduate
  • Autumn
  • 2009-2010
David Bunn, Colleen Taylor

This course is not simply about contemporary South Africa, and the novels of Coetzee, but also about the manner in which the public confession of past sins was and continues to be a critical point of reference for the ways in which political transition and justice are imagined. We will be reading Coetzee's Waiting for the Barbarians, Foe, The Life and times of Michael K, Disgrace and the volume of essays, Giving Offence . We will also be reading Dostoyevsky's Notes from Underground, Yvette Christiaanse's novel, Unconfessed, and Hannah Arendt's Eichmann in Jerusalem, Yael Farber's playtext, Malora, and will study two films: Alain Resnais' groundbreaking Hiroshima Mon Amour, and Christopher Nolan's recent psychological thriller, Memento. Theoretical readings will include works from Freud, Derrida, Foucault.

Don Quijote

Submitted by Anonymous on
28101
38101
=CMLT 28101, FNDL 21211, RLLT 34202, SPAN 24202/34202
  • Graduate/Undergraduate
  • Winter
  • 2009-2010
Frederick de Armas, Thomas Pavel

This course will provide a close reading of Cervantes' Don Quijote and discuss its links with Renaissance art and Early Modern narrative genres. On the one hand, Don Quijote can be viewed in terms of prose fiction, from the ancient Greek romances to the medieval books of knights errant and the Renaissance pastoral novels. On the other hand, Don Quijote exhibits a desire for Italy through the utilization of Renaissance art. The course will be taught in English. Spanish majors and Spanish graduate students will read the text in the original and use Spanish for the course assignments.

Jewish American Literature

Submitted by Anonymous on
29800
39800
=ENGL 25004/45002, GRMN 29800/39800, YDDH 27800/37800
  • Graduate/Undergraduate
  • Winter
  • 2009-2010
Jan Schwarz

This course expands the conception of the field of Jewish American literature from English-only to English-plus. We examine how Yiddish literary models and styles influenced the emergence and development of Jewish American literature. We also discuss how recent Jewish American novels have renewed the engagement with the Yiddish literary tradition. Readings are by Abraham Cahan, Henry Roth, I. B. Singer, Chaim Grade, Saul Bellow, Cynthia Ozick, Philip Roth, Bernard Malamud, Grace Paley, Jonathan Safran Foer, Pearl Abraham, and Dara Horn.