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Embracing the Past, Struggling with the Present; Poetry's Quest for Meaning

Submitted by Anonymous on
34101
=ENGL 34560, SCTH 34350
  • Graduate
  • Autumn
  • 2009-2010
Adam Zagajewski

PQ: Open to undergrads. In this class we'll be reading poets (and a few essayists as well) and, in doing so, paying attention to their romance with the historical time. We'll ask several questions and among them this one: Is the dialogue with history one of the main sources of meaning in poetry? And: Which layers of the past and the present are involved? Why does the imagination need the past? But we'll also concentrate on individual voices and situations. Texts: C.P. Cavafy, Guillaume Apollinaire, Paul Claudel, Joseph Brodsky, W.G. Sebald, Z. Herbert and other authors.

Reading Modern Poets

Submitted by Anonymous on
35901
=ENGL 27805/47215, SCTH 34340
  • Graduate
  • Autumn
  • 2009-2010
Robert von Hallberg, Adam Zagajewski

The idea of the class is to read a group of important 20th century poets and some of the crucial theoretical texts. This course will focus on a heterogeneous group of poets, some who write in English, some who will be read in translation. The course is not organized around a particular theme or problem. We will let each poet raise particular themes and problems for class discussion. The poets: Anne Carson, Philippe Jaccottet, Derek Mahon, Czeslaw Milosz, Eugenio Montale, Paul Valery, C. K. Williams.

Interpreting Goethe's Faust

Submitted by Anonymous on
36400
=GRMN 36409, SCTH 47011
  • Graduate
  • Autumn
  • 2009-2010
David Wellbery

Intensive study of Goethe's Faust, Parts I and II. The major task of the seminar is to develop a synthetic reading of the entire Faust drama, as Goethe conceived it. What are the leading concepts of a contemporary interpretation of Faust? Discussion will address the major lines of interpretation as developed especially in the philosophical literature and in the major recent studies commentaries. Selective consideration of the tradition of Faust-representations (from the so-called Volksbuch to Valery will enable us to circumscribe the historical and aesthetic specificity of Goethe's work. Sound reading knowledge of German required.

Comparative Mystical Literature

Submitted by Anonymous on
40200
=ISLM 43300, RLIT 43600
  • Graduate
  • Autumn
  • 2009-2010
Michael Sells

PQ: Willingness to work in one of these languages: Arabic, Latin, Greek, French, German, Hebrew, Aramaic or Spanish.

Styles of Performance and Expression from Stage to Screen

Submitted by Anonymous on
40900
=ARTH 38704, CMST 38401, ISHU 35250
  • Graduate
  • Autumn
  • 2009-2010
Yuri Tsivian

This seminar will focus on the history of acting styles in silent film (1895-1930) mapping national styles of acting that emerged during the 1910s (American, Danish, Italian, Russian) and various acting schools that proliferated during the 1920s (Expressionist acting, Kuleshov's workshop, etc). We will discuss film acting in the context of stage acting: its history from the 17th to 20th century, its theories and systems (Delsarte, Stanislavsky, Meyerhold) and in the context of fine arts. We will also look at various theories of impact (empathy, identification, etc) and at some influential texts in the history of performance (Diderot, Coquelin, Kleist).

Circulation, Sensibility, and the Discourses of Modern Value

Submitted by Anonymous on
47000
=ARTH 48509, ENGL 48606, GNDR 48600
  • Graduate
  • Autumn
  • 2009-2010
David Bunn and Jane Taylor

We will look at the figure of circulation arising from Harvey's anatomical investigations, philosophical enquiries from Descartes, Smith and Hume, and literary texts including Behn, Wycherley, Fielding, Austen, Smollet, Burney, Goldsmith and Pope and Worsworth as well as Kubrick's film of Thackeray's novel The Luck of Barry Lyndon, and will look at circulation, feeling and value from the seventeenth to the nineteenth centuries. We will discuss the particular emergence of two sites for the performance of mobility: on one hand, the English landscape, with the impact of practitioners such as Vanbrugh, Capability Brown, and Humphry Repton, as well as Vauxhall Gardens and Stowe; on the other is the auction house: both as key tropes. Theoretical readings will include Marx, Veblen, Simmel, Benjamin, Habermas, Nancy Fraser. Literary and performance history of the early modern era suggests that there was considerable instability around matters of gender identity. In this course we will look at such historically particular cultural phenomena as 'the breeches part' and the 'castrato' in an enquiry into how passing (across class positions as well as gendered identities) gets deployed as a strategy for representing increasingly mobile conceptions of selfhood in an era of upheaval within the economic sphere.

Seminar: Tragedy and the Tragic

Submitted by Anonymous on
50100
=CLAS 40709
  • Graduate
  • Autumn
  • 2009-2010
David Wray

PQ: Consent of instructor. Outside students will be accepted, with the class size limited to 15 students, as long as the majority of the students are CompLit Grad students and PhD students in Classics. Fulfills the core course requirement for CompLit students. Students who wish to take this course but have already taken a Comparative Literature core course may take this course with permission of the instructor. Course readings include Greek, Roman, and early modern European tragic dramas (including Aeschylus, Sophocles, Euripides, Seneca, Shakespeare, Lope de Vega, Corneille, Racine, and Schiller) together with major works of literary criticism on tragedy and the idea of the tragic, from Plato, Aristotle, and Longinus to Sidney, Hegel, and Lacan. Each student must read at least one play in a language other than English.

Race, Media, and Visual Culture

Submitted by Anonymous on
51500
=CDIN 51300, ENGL 51300, ARTH 49309, CMST 51300, ARTV 55500
  • Graduate
  • Autumn
  • 2009-2010
Darby English, WJT Mitchell

This seminar will explore the question of race, racism, and racial identity across a variety of media and social practices, including photography and cinema, visual art and literature, and the iconology of everyday life. The seminar will provide a twin introduction to the fundamentals of visual cultural theory and media studies, on the one hand, and racial theory on the other. The study of racial theory will converge with issues of visuality, mediation, and iconology, particularly the question of stereotype and caricature, the role of fantasy and the imaginary in racist perception, and its reproduction and critique in various form of visual art and media. Sponsored by the Center for Disciplinary Innovation (CDI), the seminar will combine methodologies from art history, literary criticism, visual and media studies, as well as anthropology.

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.

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.

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.

Sensibility, Sensation, and Sexuality

Submitted by Anonymous on
24701
=ENGL 25307
  • Undergraduate
  • Autumn
  • 2009-2010
Larry Rothfield

This course traces a genealogy of affect by focusing on the representation and incitement of emotions in nineteenth-century fiction. Readings include Goethe, The Sorrows of Young Werther ; Austen, Sense and Sensibility ; Flaubert, Madame Bovary ; and Hardy, Far from the Madding Crowd .

Foucault and The History of Sexuality

Submitted by Anonymous on
25001
=FNDL 22001, GNDR 23100, HIPS 24300, PHIL 24800
  • Undergraduate
  • Autumn
  • 2009-2010
Arnold Davidson

Open only to college students. PQ: Prior philosophy course or consent of instructor. This course centers on a close reading of the first volume of Michel Foucault's The History of Sexuality , with some attention to his writings on the history of ancient conceptualizations of sex. How should a history of sexuality take into account scientific theories, social relations of power, and different experiences of the self? We discuss the contrasting descriptions and conceptions of sexual behavior before and after the emergence of a science of sexuality. Other writers influenced by and critical of Foucault are also discussed.

Reading Modern Poets

Submitted by Anonymous on
25901
=ENGL 27805/47215, SCTH 34340
  • Undergraduate
  • Autumn
  • 2009-2010
Robert von Hallberg, Adam Zagajewski

The idea of the class is to read a group of important 20th century poets and some of the crucial theoretical texts. This course will focus on a heterogeneous group of poets, some who write in English, some who will be read in translation. The course is not organized around a particular theme or problem. We will let each poet raise particular themes and problems for class discussion. The poets: Anne Carson, Philippe Jaccottet, Derek Mahon, Czeslaw Milosz, Eugenio Montale, Paul Valery, C. K. Williams.

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.

B.A. Project and Workshop: Comparative Literature

Submitted by Anonymous on
29801
  • Undergraduate
  • Autumn
  • 2009-2010
Dustin Simpson

All fourth-year Comparative Literature majors are required to register for the B.A. project and workshop (CMLT 29801) and attend its meetings. The workshop begins in the Autumn Quarter and continues through the middle of the Spring Quarter. While the B.A. workshop meets in all three quarters, it counts as a one-quarter course credit. Students may register for the course in any of the three quarters of their fourth year. A grade for the course will be assigned in the Spring Quarter based partly on participation in the workshop and partly on the quality of the B.A. paper.