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Mimesis

Submitted by vickylim on
30202
CLAS 39200, EALC 30100
  • Graduate
  • Winter
  • 2012-2013
Tamara Chin

This course will examine one of the central concepts of comparative literature: mimesis (imitation). We will investigate traditional theoretical and historical debates concerning literary and visual mimesis as well as more recent discussions of its relation to non-western and colonial contexts. Readings will include Aristotle, Auerbach, Butler, Spivak, and Taussig. Students are encouraged to write final papers on their own research topics while engaging with issues discussed through the course.

History and Modern Arabic Literature

Submitted by vickylim on
30551
ARAB 30551
  • Graduate/Undergraduate
  • Spring
  • 2012-2013
Orit Bashkin

PQ:  reading knowledge of Arabic (namely three years of Arabic at least) is required; students are expected to read the novels as part of their homework assignment.

The class studies historical novels and the insights historians might gain from contextualizing and analyzing them. The Arab middle classes were exposed to a variety of newspapers and literary and scientific magazines, which they read at home and in societies and clubs, during the late nineteenth century and the early twentieth. Such readers learned much about national identity, gender relations and Islamic reform from historical novels popularized in the local press.  Some of these novels were read not only by adults, but also by children, and consequently their ideas reached a very large audience. The novels’ writers paid great attention to debates concerning political theory and responded to discourses that were occurring in the public spheres of urban Middle East centers and, concurrently, appropriated and discussed themes debated among Orientalists and Western writers. The class will explore these debates as well as the connections between the novel and other genres in classical Arabic literature which modern novels hybridized and parodied.  It will survey some of the major works in the field, including historical novels by Gurji Zaydan, Farah Antun, Nikola Haddad, and Nagib Mahfuz.

Marxism and Modern Culture

Submitted by vickylim on
31600
ENGL 32300
  • Graduate
  • Winter
  • 2012-2013
Loren Kruger

This course covers the classics in the field of marxist social theory (Marx, Engels, Lenin, Gramsci, Reich, Lukacs, Fanon) as well as key figures in the development of Marxist aesthetics (Adorno, Benjamin, Brecht, Marcuse, Williams) and recent developments in Marxist critiques of new media, post-colonial theory and other contemporary topics. It is suitable for graduate students in literature depts. and art history. It is not suitable for students in the social sciences.

Ideas of Lyric

Submitted by vickylim on
34270
MAPH 34270,ENGL 24270,ENGL 34270
  • Graduate/Undergraduate
  • Spring
  • 2012-2013
Joshua Adams

What is lyric poetry? Should the genre be defined by its relationship to song? By the convention of a first-person speaker? By reference to a particular model of the self or the person? By the presence of ambiguity or paradox? By the fact that it resists paraphrase? Or is the lyric ultimately a product of practices and institutions that can and should be historicized? This course will attempt to answer some of these questions by surveying some important modern and contemporary theories of lyric poetry. We will read philosophical and critical work by, among others, Hegel, Wordsworth, J.S. Mill, T.S. Eliot, William Empson, Theodor Adorno, Paul de Man, W.R. Johnson, Allen Grossman, Robert von Hallberg, Susan Stewart, Virginia Jackson, Daniel Tiffany, and Oren Izenberg. We will analyze these texts as arguments, but also test their claims against actual poems. Requirements include a class presentation and a final paper.

Current MAPH students and 3rd and 4th years in the College. All others by instructor consent only. THIS COURSE WILL NOW BE HELD ON MW AT 1:30-2:50 FOR THE UPCOMING SPRING 2013 QUARTER.

Living Poetry

Submitted by vickylim on
34381
SCTH 34381
  • Graduate
  • Autumn
  • 2012-2013
Thomas Pavel

Russian Modernist Prose

Submitted by vickylim on
34503
RUSS 34503
  • Graduate
  • Spring
  • 2012-2013
Robert Bird

A survey of Russian modernist prose from the neo-realists (Bunin, Gorky) and symbolists (Sologub, Briusov, Bely) to early Soviet writers (Zamiatin, Zoshchenko, Bulgakov, Pil'niak, Platonov). Topics will include the development of style and the literary language, experimentation with narrative form, and concurrent developments in criticism and theory. Extensive comparison will be made to modernist prose in Polish, German, French and English. Knowledge of Russian required. 

Virgil, The Aeneid

Submitted by vickylim on
35902
SCTH 35902
  • Graduate
  • Winter
  • 2012-2013
Glenn Most

A close literary analysis of one of the most celebrated works of European literature. While the text, in its many dimensions, will offer more than adequate material for classroom analysis and discussion, attention will also be directed to the extraordinary reception of this epic, from Virgil's times to ours.
PQ: Latin helpful

Sophocles, Oedipus at Colonus

Submitted by vickylim on
35903
SCTH 35901, GREK 40112
  • Winter
  • 2012-2013
Glenn Most

A close literary and philological analysis of one of the most extraordinary of all Greek tragedies. While this play, in its many dimensions, will offer more than adequate material for classroom analysis and discussion, some attention will also be directed to its reception.
PQ: Greek or consent.

Poetic Force

Submitted by vickylim on
38513
GRMN 28513/38513
  • Graduate
  • Spring
  • 2012-2013
Florian Klinger

Centered on the works of Kafka, Beckett, and Musil, this seminar sets out to explore poetic form generated from radical experimentation with force. At around 1900, a recent configuration of the terms force, motion, energy, and entropy, emerging from the intersection of disciplines as varied as thermodynamics, sociology, and philosophy, starts to inform literary production as well. Traditional binarisms such as form/matter, form/content, or form/substance get replaced by the new paradigm of an interplay between form and entropy, force and exhaustion. Is form opposed to exhaustion or does it live off it? To what extent can form be conceived as motion? How does it reflect the cultural shift from energy to information? How can we conceptualize categories such as probability, intensity, or elasticity for literary analysis? Supplementary materials reach from Aristotle to Deleuze, including key modernist accounts of force by Adams, Freud, Warburg, Valéry, and Boccioni.

Historiography, Literature, Archaeology

Submitted by vickylim on
39601
EALC 37460
  • Graduate
  • Winter
  • 2012-2013
Tamara Chin

This course examines the relation between historicity and the literary, using Sima Qian’s Shiji (Records of the Grand Historian) as the primary example.  The Shiji is arguably the most influential Chinese work of historiography, and we will also explore its interdisciplinary and international afterlife.  Particular attention will be paid to notions of the immaterial (the unreal, the fictional, the spiritual, the theoretical), the exotic (the non-Chinese, the foreign), and the universal, in traditional Chinese historiography and poetics, in modern archaeology, and in critical theory.  Students without classical Chinese reading knowledge are welcome to join and to write their final papers on comparative topics.

Islamic Love Poetry

Submitted by vickylim on
40100
ISLM 40100,NEHC 40600,RLIT 40300
  • Graduate
  • Spring
  • 2012-2013
Michael Sells

The focus is on the pre-modern Islamic love lyric (nasib, ghazal). Since none of us know all the relevant languages, I ask each participant in the course to be a guide for a tradition for which he or she knows the language. We almost always devote sections to Arabic, Persian, Ottoman, and Urdu love lyric, and in the past, depending on the background and skills of the participants, we have read Bengali, Punjabi, Turkish, and Hindi poems. Other languages are possibility as well.
Prerequisite: ability to work in one of Islamicate languages, such as those mentioned above or an equivalent.

Death and the Afterlife: Cultural Models ca. 1800

Submitted by vickylim on
40413
GRMN 40413
  • Graduate
  • Spring
  • 2012-2013
David Wellbery

This seminar examines the literary and philosophical treatment of death (and related matters) in literary, philosophical, and theological texts from the late Enlightenment to Classicism and Romanticism. The task is to discriminate the competing models of meaning-articulation that bear on this question in the wake of the Enlightenment critique of religious dogmatism. Among the writers to be considered are: Lessing, Herder, Goethe, Novalis, Schleiermacher, Hegel, and Hebel. Readings in cultural history as well as paradigmatic analyses in literature and philosophy will help us to frame our discussions. Primary Readings in German. 

Death and the Afterlife

Submitted by vickylim on
40413
GRMN 40413,SCTH 40413
  • Graduate
  • Spring
  • 2012-2013
David Wellbery

This seminar examines the literary and philosophical treatment of death (and related matters) in literary, philosophical, and theological texts from the late Enlightenment to Classicism and Romanticism. The task is to discriminate the competing models of meaning-articulation that bear on this question in the wake of the Enlightenment critique of religious dogmatism. Among the writers to be considered are: Lessing, Herder, Goethe, Novalis, Schleiermacher, Hegel, and Hebel. Readings in cultural history as well as paradigmatic analyses in literature and philosophy will help us to frame our discussions. Primary Readings in German. 

Brechtian Representations

Submitted by vickylim on
40500
ENGL 44500; CMST XXXXX
  • Graduate
  • Spring
  • 2012-2013
Loren Kruger

This course will examine the contribution of Brecht, the most influential playwright of the twentieth century and its principal theatre theorist, to the practice and theory of theatre and cinema. We will pay particular attention to the relationships between theory and practice in Brecht's own work so as to clarify the significance of terms that are both concepts and techniques--epic theatre, Verfremdung, gest, historicizing, refunctioning the apparatus, and the formation of the critical audience--and go on to consider the influence (and refunctioning) of Brechtian theory and practice in more recent work of playwrights (Heiner Müller, Peter Weiss,RW Fassbinder, Caryl Churchill, Athol Fugard, Lynn Nottage...), film-makers (Jean-Luc Godard, Alexander Kluge, Fassbinder ...), and theorists (Barthes, Adorno)

Brechtian Representations: Theatre, Theory, Cinema

Submitted by vickylim on
40500
CMST 46200,ENGL 44500,GRMN 47200
  • Graduate
  • Spring
  • 2012-2013
Loren Kruger

This course will examine the contribution of Brecht, the most influential playwright of the twentieth century and its principal theatre theorist, to the practice and theory of theatre and cinema. We will pay particular attention to the relationships between theory and practice in Brecht's own work so as to clarify the significance of terms that are both concepts and techniques--epic theatre, Verfremdung, gest, historicizing, refunctioning the apparatus, and the formation of the critical audience--and go on to consider the influence (and refunctioning) of Brechtian theory and practice in more recent work of playwrights (Heiner Müller, Peter Weiss,RW Fassbinder, Caryl Churchill, Athol Fugard, Lynn Nottage...), film-makers (Jean-Luc Godard, Alexander Kluge, Fassbinder ...), and theorists (Barthes, Adorno)

Performance Theory

Submitted by vickylim on
40600
ENGL 593XX; CMST XXXXX
  • Graduate
  • Spring
  • 2012-2013
Loren Kruger

This PhD intensive reading course examines theoretical texts that deal with the interdisciplinary issues around performance in various cultural contexts. Central concerns will include dramatic action, theatricality, visual and aural representation, and the competing phenomenologies of audience experiences of performance as opposed to its cinematic mediation. We will be looking closely at the nature of drama as “doings” (the literal  translation of the Greek) as well as plotted action, the mediation of performance through cinema and video, and the ways in which drama and theatricality manifest themselves in cultural activity more broadly,. We will also scrutinize the ways on which metaphors of theatricality and performativity have been appropriated by other disciplines in the humanities and beyond. 

Seminar. Constructing Oedipus: Performance and Adaptation

Submitted by vickylim on
41612
GREK 41612
  • Graduate
  • Spring
  • 2012-2013
David Wray

This course will start with a close reading of Sophocles’ play and relevant literary criticism. We will then survey the reception of Oedipus Tyrannus through the centuries, reading from different texts and adaptations, and touching along the way on issues of reception theory itself. The course will coincide with an on-campus performance of a version of Oedipus, and students will be invited to contribute to this production or, at least, attend to the process. Experience of the practice of theater and staging will supplement our readings, which will range from Aristotle, Freud, and Lévi-Strauss to Stravinsky, Dove, and Rotimi. 

Poetics of Dislocation

Submitted by vickylim on
41701
ENGL 43706
  • Graduate
  • Spring
  • 2012-2013
Jennifer Scappettone

This course explores crises of placelessness and displacement as modernist and self-consciously postmodern verse has attempted to map them. From cosmopolitan collage epics to postwar and contemporary poetry of exile and migration, the work we will study, lodged between languages, gives traction to discourse surrounding the abstraction of space in globalizing contexts. We will examine the formal and social prompts and repercussions of experiments in barbarism, polylingualism, dialect, creole, and thwarted translation, and will delve into examples of poetic reckoning with the transformation of the site of reading as well, in the form of mixed/new media poetics. Poets will include Ezra Pound, Charles Olson, Paul Celan, Emilio Villa, Amelia Rosselli, Andrea Zanzotto, John Theresa Hak Kyung Cha, Etel Adnan, Derek Walcott, Kamau Brathwaite, M. Nourbese Philip, Ashbery, C.S. Giscombe, Caroline Bergvall, Pamela Lu, Tan Lin, kari edwards. Theoretical writing by Edouard Glissant, David Harvey, Deleuze and Guattari, Jacques Derrida, James Clifford, Kwame Anthony Appiah, Miwon Kwon, others.

Theories of the Novel

Submitted by vickylim on
42418
ENGL 42418
  • Graduate
  • Winter
  • 2012-2013
Lawrence Rothfield

This course introduces undergraduates to some of the fundamental conceptual issues raised by novels: how are novels formally unified (if they are)? What are the ideological presuppositions inherent in a novelistic view? What ethical practices do novels encourage? What makes a character in a novel distinct from character in other fictive systems? Readings include Austen, Pride and Prejudice; Dickens, Great Expectations; Woolf, Mrs. Dalloway. Critics covered include Lukacs, Bakhtin,  Watt, Jameson, McKeon, D.A. Miller, Woloch, Moretti, and others.

Pindar: Ritual, Poetics, Monuments

Submitted by vickylim on
42801
CLAS 44912, CDIN 44912, ARTH 43340
  • Graduate
  • Spring
  • 2012-2013
Boris Maslov and Richard Neer

This course will be taught by Boris Maslov (Comp. Lit.) and Richard Neer (Art History) with the continuous participation of Leslie Kurke (Classics and Comp. Lit., University of California at Berkeley).  It will explore new ways of reading Greek poetry, and new disciplinary formations at the intersection of archaeology, art history, classics and comparative literature.  Coursework will consist of close readings of Pindar with an eye to material and institutional contexts of poetic production.  Topics will include the “thingly” or material nature of the poem; architectural metaphors; the emergent discourse of poetic professionalism; relation between epinician and traditional cult poetry; sites of poetic performance; Pindar’s allusions to monuments at Delphi, Olympia and elsewhere; the historical phenomenology of architecture and statuary; and the construction of sacred landscapes.

Students wishing to develop a closer familiarity with Pindar and Pindaric scholarship will meet, as part of an informal reading group, run by Boris Maslov, in the Winter quarter (starting in Week 4); those wishing to take part should send an email tomaslov@uchicago.edu. Prerequisites: Classical Greek required; graduate standing (seniors may be admitted; should email Prof. Maslov or Prof. Neer in advance).  

The Face on Film

Submitted by vickylim on
43002
CMST 63002,ARTH 43002
  • Graduate
  • Spring
  • 2012-2013
Noa Steimatsky

The seminar will discuss on the workings of the face –as imprint of identity, as figure of subjectivity, as privileged object of representation, as mode and ethic of address – through film theory and practice. How has cinema responded to the mythic and iconic charge of the face, to the portrait’s exploration of model and likeness, identity and identification, the revelatory and masking play of expression, the symbolic and social registers informing the human countenance. At this intersection of archaic desires and contemporary anxieties, the face will serve as our medium by which to reconsider, in the cinematic arena, some of the oldest questions on the image. Among the filmmakers and writers who will inform our discussion are Balázs, Epstein, Kuleshov, Dreyer, Pasolini, Hitchcock, Warhol, Bresson, Bazin, Barthes, Doane, Aumont, Nancy, Didi-Huberman, and others.

Philosophy and the Poetics of Presence in Postwar France

Submitted by vickylim on
43312
CDIN 43312 (=CLAS 43312, HIST 66503, SCTH 43312
  • Graduate
  • Autumn
  • 2012-2013
Mark Payne; Alison James

This course will examine the extent to which Martin Heidegger’s redescription of Greek poetry and philosophy as an ontological project provided a normative horizon for avant-garde poetic practice in postwar France. We will begin with Heidegger’s encounter with René Char in Provence, and their rereading of the pre-Socratic philosophers in a series of seminars between 1966 and 1973. We will look at Heidegger’s response to Char’s poetic prose in connection with Heidegger’s call for thinking instead of philosophy, and at the philosophical commitments of poets who took Char as model, or who develop alternative accounts of the link between poetry and Being. Authors will include Ponge, Celan, Guillevic, Du Bouchet, Royet-Journoud, Albiach, Sobin, Susan Howe, and Daive. Texts may be read in the original or in English translation.

Seminar: Phaedrus

Submitted by vickylim on
44212
CLAS 44212, GREK 44212, LATN 44212
  • Graduate
  • Spring
  • 2012-2013
David Wray

We will study ancient (Euripides, Ovid, Seneca) and modern (Racine, D'Annunzio, H.D., Kane) versions of Phaedra and her family system.  Topics of discussion will include intertextuality, incest, abjection, and the relations between poetics and moral psychologies.  No knowledge of languages other than English is required, but Classics and Comp Lit students will read one or more tragedies in the original language.

Problems in International Cultural Policy

Submitted by vickylim on
44620
LAWS 94704,PLSC 44620,ENGL 44620,PPHA 40410
  • Graduate
  • Spring
  • 2012-2013
Lawrence Rothfield

We live in an era of unprecedented global flows of cultural goods both tangible and intangible (artworks, antiquities, dancers and musicians, intellectuals, texts, films, images and ideas), and of unprecedented threats to culture from both market and ideological forces. How are these challenges being addressed by the cultural policies being pursued by states, international organizations, and non-governmental groups? We will focus on three main arenas of international cultural policy: cultural patrimony and restitution issues ranging from the Elgin marbles and Franz Kafka's unpublished papers to international efforts to protect archaeological sites and museums in failed states; initiatives focused on cultural diplomacy/exchange/engagement; and globalization/protectionism of cultural industries and institutions ranging from film and music to museums and universities.

Postcolonial Americas

Submitted by vickylim on
46303
ENGL 46303
  • Graduate
  • Autumn
  • 2012-2013
Raul Coronado

MAPH SEMINAR

Postcolonial Americas

During the eighteenth century, European Enlightenment writers led a philosophical assault on the Americas.  From Spain, France, and Britain, philosophers made various arguments claiming that in the Americas everything degenerated:  humans and animals would, over generations, become smaller.  The Americas, it turned out, simply paled in comparison to Europe.  This class is an exploration of the American response to this rhetorical subalternization.  To be clear, this class is not a study of the subalterns of the Americas; rather, we will focus on the elite Spanish American and British American response to their subalternization by Europe.  We’ll examine then the emerging sense of what it means to be an American by focusing on the Spanish American and British colonies, and follow this through with the early national periods.  The course is an interdisciplinary course.  We’ll read literary, cultural, and social history for context and theories of imagined communities, reading publics, and literary history.  Our focus, however, will be on the primary texts:  non-fiction prose narrative, the rise of the novel in the Americas, short stories, political philosophy, journalism, and travel writing.  Spanish-reading skills will definitely aid in comprehension, but all non-anglophone texts are available in translation.

South Asia from the Peripheries: Afghanistan, Pakistan, and the Transnational

Submitted by vickylim on
46902
SALC 46902
  • Graduate
  • Autumn
  • 2012-2013
C. Ryan Perkins

This graduate course seeks to approach the region of South Asia through a focus on the peripheries – geographic, social and cultural – hoping to shed light on the historic role margins have played in shaping not just South Asia, but the larger world in which we live.  The areas of focus will include Khushal Khan Khattak’s encounters with the Mughals, colonial attempts to subdue and control tribes in revolt, the Taliban, regional literatures, the arts, gender and Islam, hijras, mendicants, diaspora communities, resistance movements and orality.   A concentration throughout the course on transregional and transnational networks will provide us with a broader framework to help interrogate state-centric approaches.  Readings will include primary source materials in translation, scholarly engagements with the region and theoretical writings, from Althusser and Foucault to readings from the Subaltern Studies collective, Gramsci and Sayd Bahodine Majrouh, to name a few.  

Narratology: Classical Models and New Directions

Submitted by vickylim on
50103
GRMN 40212
  • Graduate
  • Autumn
  • 2012-2013
David Wellbery

This seminar is an introduction to the formal study of narrative. Its purpose is to provide graduate students with a set of conceptual instruments that will be useful to them in a broad range of research contexts. Topics to be considered: 1) the structure of the narrative text; 2) the logic of story construction; 3) questions of perspective and voice; 4) character and identification; 5) narrative genres. After a brief consideration of Aristotle’s Poetics, we will move on to fundamental contributions by (among others) Propp, Lévi-Strauss, Barthes, Greimas, Genette, Eco, Lotman, Marin, Ricoeur, and then finish with recent work in analytic philosophy and cognitive science. Readings in theoretical/analytical texts will be combined with practical exercises. 

Seminar: Historicism and the Comparative Method

Submitted by vickylim on
50202
SLAV 50202, GRMN 40213
  • Graduate
  • Winter
  • 2012-2013
Boris Maslov

This seminar will explore historicism as a theoretical problem in the study of literature. Our particular foci will be the development of historicism as a distinctly modern hermeneutic mode from the 18th c. to the 20th c.; its relation to organicism, aestheticism, and evolutionism; the rise of comparative literature alongside other "comparative disciplines" on a historicist-empiricist basis in the second half of the 19th century; literary methodologies that profess a version of historicism (Historical Poetics, (Neo)-Marxism, New Historicism). Critics discussed will include Johann von Herder, Alexander Veselovsky, Georg Lukács, Mikhail Bakhtin, Erich Auerbach, Leo Spitzer, Fredric Jameson, Reinhart Koselleck, and Carlo Ginzburg. 

Foucault: Self, Government, and Regimes of Truth

Submitted by vickylim on
50511
PHIL 50211, DVPR 50211
  • Graduate
  • Autumn
  • 2012-2013
Arnold Davidson

A close reading of Michel Foucault’s 1979-80 course at the Collège de France, Du gouvernement des vivants.  Foucault’s most extensive course on early Christianity, these lectures examine the relations between the government of the self and regimes of truth through a detailed analysis of Christian penitential practices, with special attention to the practices of exomologēsis and exagoreusis.  We will read this course both taking into account Foucault’s sustained interest in ancient thought and with a focus on the more general historical and theoretical conclusions that can be drawn from his analyses.  Reading knowledge of French required.

Eden to Eliot, J.C. to Jay-Z: The Bible in Western Culture

Submitted by vickylim on
20360
30360
JWSC 20006, NEHC 20406
  • Graduate/Undergraduate
  • Autumn
  • 2012-2013
Charles Huff

The Bible, a complex anthology of literature from a variety of religious, political, and historical perspectives from ancient Israel, has been primary textual authority in Western culture, politics, and religion. This class will explore how the authority of the Bible has been understood and used by people in Western societies in their political, historical, religious, and aesthetic contexts. We will accomplish this by a close reading of both the biblical texts and their reception in the texts, music, and visual arts of Western civilization, with a special emphasis on the use of these receptions in particular societies. The material covered in this course is necessarily selective; the course will give a basic literacy in the Bible and its use, and, more importantly, it will also teach the student to recognize and analyze biblical allusions in their future research.

Jewish Thought and Literature III: Biblical Voices in Modern Hebrew Literature

Submitted by vickylim on
20401
30401
JWSC 20006,NEHC 20406,NEHC 30406,RLST 20406
  • Graduate/Undergraduate
  • Spring
  • 2012-2013
Na'ama Rokem

The Hebrew Bible is the most important intertextual point of reference in Modern Hebrew literature, a literary tradition that begins with the (sometimes contested) claim to revive the ancient language of the Bible. In this course, we will consider the Bible as a source of vocabulary, figurative language, voice and narrative models in modern Hebrew and Jewish literature, considering the stakes and the implications of such intertextual engagement. Among the topics we will focus on: the concept of language-revival, the figure of the prophet-poet, revisions and counter-versions of key Biblical stories (including the story of creation, the binding of Isaac and the stories of King David), the Song of Songs in Modern Jewish poetry.

Fictional Minds: The Representation of Consciousness in the European Novel

Submitted by vickylim on
20663
SCTH 20663,ENGL 20663
  • Undergraduate
  • Spring
  • 2012-2013
James McCormick

Through readings of texts by Goethe, Flaubert, Dostoevsky, Woolf, Musil, and Zadie Smith, this course will examine the range of formal techniques for representing minds during different eras in the history of the European novel. We will ask how different modes of narrating fictional minds reveal underlying (and shifting) models of human subjectivity and how these models, in turn, structure our own reading practices and our interpretation of characters. The literary readings will be supplemented with secondary texts that will introduce students to the tools and concerns of classical narratology as well as to contemporary development in cognitive literary studies. Theoretical authors will include: Gerard Genette, Dorrit Cohn, Erich Auerbach, Monika Fudernik, Mikhail Bakhtin, Alan Palmer, Lisa Zunshine, and David Lodge.

The Arab Israeli Conflict in Literature and Film

Submitted by vickylim on
20906
30906
NEHC 20906/30906; HIST 26004/36004; JWSC 25903
  • Graduate/Undergraduate
  • Autumn
  • 2012-2013
Orit Bashkin

The course looks at the realities of the Arab Israel conflict as portrayed by Palestinian and Israeli writers. We will explore works of poets, novelists, short stories writers, filmmakers and artists, and the meanings they ascribe to such concepts as “homeland,” “exile,” “nation,” “struggle,” and “liberation.” We will study the analysis novelists offer to moments of politicized violence in the region, and the reception on these analysis in the Palestinian and Israeli publics. Finally, we will study the fields of power related to production of these works: who has the power to write/film, and thus represent, the realities of the Arab-Israeli conflict? Which voices are silenced in these processes? How can historians reconstruct radical voices in their analysis of the events by reading works of literature? Reading materials include works by Emile Habibi, Ghassan Kanafani, Mahmud Darwish, Amos Oz, Dahlia Ravikovitch and S. Yizhar.  The class is open to graduate and undergraduate students. No prior knowledge of Hebrew or Arabic is required.

Merleau-Ponty's Phenomenology of Perception

Submitted by vickylim on
21906
FNDL 21906
  • Undergraduate
  • Spring
  • 2012-2013
Haun Saussy

A reading of Maurice Merleau-Ponty's Phenomenology of Perception (1945) with appropriate reference to its philosophical, psychological and even fictional predecessors. The course should be of interest to those working in the philosophy of consciousness, mind-body relations, critical theory, history of science, and even ethics and aesthetics. Reading ability in French encouraged but not required; we will use the original text and the translation by Colin Smith.

Magic Realist and Fantastic Writings from the Balkans

Submitted by vickylim on
22201
32201
SOSL 27400/37400
  • Undergraduate
  • Spring
  • 2012-2013
Angelina Ilieva

In this course, we ask whether there is such a thing as a "Balkan" type of magic realism and think about the differences between the genres of magic realism and the fantastic, while reading some of the most interesting writing to have come out of the Balkans. We also look at the similarities of the works from different countries (e.g., lyricism of expression, eroticism, nostalgia) and argue for and against considering such similarities constitutive of an overall Balkan sensibility.

War & Peace

Submitted by vickylim on
22301
32301
RUSS 22302 (=RUSS 32302, ENGL 28912, ENGL 32302, FNDL 27103, HIST 23704)
  • Graduate/Undergraduate
  • Autumn
  • 2012-2013
William Nickell

Close reading of Tolstoy’s novel, along with additional fiction and background material

Returning the Gaze: Balkans & Western Europe

Submitted by vickylim on
23201
33201
NEHC 20885/30885
  • Graduate/Undergraduate
  • Autumn
  • 2012-2013
Angelina Ilieva

This course investigates the complex relationship between South East European self-representations and the imagined Western "gaze" for whose benefit the nations stage their quest for identity and their aspirations for recognition. We also think about differing models of masculinity, the figure of the gypsy as a metaphor for the national self in relation to the West, and the myths Balkans tell about themselves. We conclude by considering the role that the imperative to belong to Western Europe played in the Yugoslav wars of succession. Some possible texts/films are Ivo Andric, Bosnian Chronicle; Aleko Konstantinov, Baj Ganyo; Emir Kusturica, Underground; and Milcho Manchevski, Before the Rain.

Balkan Folklore

Submitted by vickylim on
23301
SOSL 26800
  • Undergraduate
  • Winter
  • 2012-2013
Angelina Ilieva

Immerse yourself in the magic world of vampires and dragons, bagpipes and uneven beats, quick-step circle dance. This course give an introduction to Balkan folklore from anthropological, historical/political, and performative perspectives. We become acquainted with folk tales, lyric and epic songs, music, and dance. The work of Milman Parry and Albert Lord, who developed their theory of oral composition through work among epic singers in the Balkans, helps us understand folk tradition as a dynamic process – how is oral tradition transmitted, preserved, changed, forgotten? how do illiterate singers learn their long narrative poems, how do musicians learn to play? We consider the function of different folklore genres in the imagining and maintenance of community and the socialization of the individual. The historical/political part will survey the emergence of folklore studies as a discipline as well as the ways it has served in the formation and propagation of the nation in the Balkans. The class will also experience this living tradition first hand through our in-class workshop with the Chicago based dance ensemble “Balkanski igri.” The Annual Balkan Folklore Spring Festival will be held in March at the International House.

The Burden of History: A Nation and its Lost Paradise

Submitted by vickylim on
23401
SOSL 27300
  • Undergraduate
  • Winter
  • 2012-2013
Angelina Ilieva

How and why do national identities provoke the deep emotional attachments that they do? In this course we try to understand these emotional attachments by examining the narrative of loss and redemption through which most nations in the Balkans retell their Ottoman past. We begin by considering the mythic temporality of the Romantic national narrative while focusing on specific national literary texts where the national past is retold through the formula of original wholeness, foreign invasion, Passion, and Salvation. We then proceed to unpack the structural role of the different elements of that narrative. With the help of Žižek’s theory of the subject as constituted by trauma, we think about the national fixation on the trauma of loss, and the role of trauma in the formation of national consciousness. Specific theme inquiries involve the figure of the Janissary as self and other, brotherhood and fratricide, and the writing of the national trauma on the individual physical body. Special attention is given to the general aesthetic of victimhood, the casting of the victimized national self as the object of the “other’s perverse desire.” With the help of Freud, Žižek and Kant we consider the transformation of national victimhood into the sublimity of the national self. The main primary texts include Petar Njegoš’ Mountain Wreath (Serbia and Montenegro), Ismail Kadare’s The Castle (Albania), Anton Donchev’s Time of Parting (Bulgaria).

Mikhail Bakhtin and Yurii Lotman: Polyphony to Semiosphere

Submitted by vickylim on
23502
33502
RUSS 23501/33501
  • Graduate/Undergraduate
  • Winter
  • 2012-2013
Lina Steiner

This seminar will focus on major works by the Russian philosopher, philologist and literary theorist Mikhail Bakhtin (1895-1975), including his early philosophical work Author and Hero in Aesthetic Activity, his essays on Speech genres and the Bildungsroman, as well as his books Rabelais and His World and Problems of Dostoevsky's Poetics. We will also read contemporary scholarly studies devoted to Bakhtin and his circle (Clark&Holquist, Morson&Emerson, Tihanov etc.) In the last two weeks of the seminar we will turn to Yurii Lotman, examining his works on semiotics of culture as an original approach to literary theory and semiotics as well as a response to Bakhtin.

The course is open to advanced undergraduates and graduate students. All texts are in English. Discussion and final papers are in English. There are no prerequisites for this course.

Beautiful Souls, Adventurers and Rogues: The European 18th Century Novel

Submitted by vickylim on
24401
34401
FREN 25301/35301; SCTH 38240
  • Undergraduate
  • Winter
  • 2012-2013
Thomas Pavel

The course will examine several major eighteenth-century novels, including Manon Lescaut by Prevost, Pamela and fragments from Clarissa by Richardson, Shamela and fragments from Joseph Andrews by Fielding, Jacques le Fataliste by Diderot, and The Sufferings of Young Werther by Goethe. Taught in English. A weekly session in French will be held for French majors and graduate students. PQ: Not open to first-year undergraduates.  

Before and After Beckett: Theater and Theory

Submitted by vickylim on
24408
ENGL 24402
  • Undergraduate
  • Winter
  • 2012-2013
Loren Kruger

Beckett is conventionally typed as the playwright of minimalist scenes of unremitting bleaksness but his experiments with theatre and film echo the irreverent play of popular culture (vaudeville on stage and screen eg Chaplin and Keaton) as well as the artistic avant garde (Jarry). This course with juxtapose these early 20th c models with Beckett’s plays on stage and screen and those of his contemporaries (Ionesco, Genet, Duras,). Contemporary texts include Vinaver, Minyana, in French, Pinter, Churchill, Kane in English. Theorists include Barthes, Badiou, Bert States and others ComLit students will have the opportunity to read French originals.

Masterpieces of Scandinavian Literature

Submitted by vickylim on
24712
NORW 24712, GRMN 24712
  • Undergraduate
  • Autumn
  • 2012-2013
Ingeborg Kongslien

This course examines a selection of literary texts from the Nordic countries - novels, plays, short stories, poems - by writers that figure prominently in the respective national canons and are also acclaimed internationally. It starts with the onset of modernism in the late 19th century represented by Henrik Ibsen and the young Knut Hamsun, continues with the great narrators of the 20th century including Karen Blixen, Halldór Laxness, and Vilhelm Moberg, and concludes around the millennium with playwright Jon Fosse, and the new voices of the novelists Linn Ullmann and Jonas Hassem Khemiri, the latter an eminent representative of  multicultural  writings,  so prominent in the international literary canon, now also featured in Scandinavia.  Readings in cultural and literary history as well as literary criticism will supplement the course in order to contextualize the literary works.

When Characters Meet Their Authors: Frontiers of Fiction

Submitted by vickylim on
24713
34713
FREN 24713/34713
  • Graduate/Undergraduate
  • Spring
  • 2012-2013
Francoise Lavocat

This course will examine the role and function of both the author and the character by investigating the long exploited narrative device of their encounter within the fictional world. In so doing, we will reflect upon the boundaries of fiction (do they exist ? what is their nature: logical, narratological, ontological ?).  We will read French, Spanish, Italian, and English texts, encompassing a variety of genres and media, from the early modern to contemporary periods.   Authors will include Cervantes, Molière, Fénelon, Bougeant, Pirandello, Caumery, Woody Allen, Paul Auster, and Jonathan Coe.

Note: All readings will be offered English, although students may read French, Italian and Spanish texts in their original language.   Students taking the course for French credit must read all French texts in the original language and do written work in French.  Prerequisites:  For FREN, at least two literature level courses (FREN 21700 or above); for Comp Lit, two literature level courses (200-level and above).

Greece/China

Submitted by vickylim on
24903
34903
CLCV 27612, CLAS 37612, EALC 24901, EALC 34901
  • Graduate/Undergraduate
  • Spring
  • 2012-2013
Tamara Chin

This class will explore three sets of paired authors from ancient China and Greece: Herodotus/Sima Qian; Plato/Confucius; Homer/Book of Songs.  Topics will include genre, authorship, style, cultural identity, and translation, as well as the historical practice of Greece/China comparative work.

Foucault: History of Sexuality

Submitted by vickylim on
25001
PHIL 24800 (=GNSE 23100, HIPS 24300, FNDL 22001)
  • Undergraduate
  • Autumn
  • 2012-2013
Arnold Davidson

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.

Sea Fictions: Reading Transnationally

Submitted by vickylim on
25004
ENGL 24311
  • Undergraduate
  • Autumn
  • 2012-2013
Chandani Patel

This course will examine texts like Shakespeare’s The Tempest, Defoe’s Robinson Crusoe, and Melville’s Typee alongside Reinaldo Arenas’s Farewell to the Sea (Cuba), Agualusa’s Creole (Angola), and Amitav Ghosh’s Sea of Poppies amongst others as transnational representations of the sea and human relationships to it. We will ask how these stories of oceanic journeys and the transnational affinities they produce generate accounts of language and history, and we will think comparatively about how the dangers these texts associate with the sea –such as shipwreck, cannibalism, death and loss –figure alongside its potentials –as a means of mobility and freedom, as a site of friendship and understanding. Discussing these fictional texts alongside theoretical works by writers such as Paul Gilroy, Mikhail Bakhtin, Isabel Hofmeyr, Emily Apter, and Michel Foucault, we will try to determine what new theoretical concepts and affiliations emerge when we untether these fictions from their national literary traditions. Students will have the opportunity to read originals in French, Spanish and Portuguese.

Specificity/Interdisciplinarity: Myths of Orpheus

Submitted by vickylim on
25005
  • Undergraduate
  • Spring
  • 2012-2013
David Markus

This course takes a number of variations on the myth of Orpheus as the basis for an exploration of critical problems surrounding medium specificity, interdisciplinary study, and topics arising from cultural studies such as race and gender. We will begin with early representations of the myth in Ovid and Virgil before proceeding to more recent interpretations in the work of Rilke, H.D., Jean Cocteau, Tennessee Williams, Salmon Rushdie, and Neil Gaiman. Creative works will be considered alongside critical texts by Roland Barthes, Maurice Blanchot, André Bazin, Homi Bhabha, Kaja Silverman, Frederic Jameson, and Lauren Berlant. In keeping with the interdisciplinary theme of the course, film showings will be held regularly and music and visual materials will frequently figure as objects of study. 

Plato on Poets

Submitted by vickylim on
25013
35013
PORT 25013/35013, SCTH 30612
  • Graduate/Undergraduate
  • Spring
  • 2012-2013
Miguel Tamen

Approaching Infinity: A History of Imaginative Attempts

Submitted by vickylim on
25303
HIPS 25303, HIST 25011
  • Undergraduate
  • Spring
  • 2012-2013
Lily Huang
Does the infinite exist? Where, and by what lights? This course is an undisciplined investigation of multitudinous ways of denying, containing, and expressing the infinite. The sundry aspirations we study range from ancient natural philosophy to Enlightenment metaphysics, from Romantic poetry to fractal geometry. Authors include Aristotle, Lucretius, Shakespeare, Leibniz, Goethe, Coleridge, Keats, Flaubert, James, Bergson, Borges, and Calvino.
 
Full syllabus here: home.uchicago.edu/~lilyx

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