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 English Language and Literature. Fulfills the core course requirement for CompLit students. This course will explore major trends in Western literary criticism from Plato to the late eighteenth-century conceived of as the prehistory of comparative literature as a discipline. The course will take as its particular focus the critical treatment of epic in some of the following: Plato, Aristotle, Longinus, Horace, Giraldi, Montaigne, Tasso, Sidney, Le Bossu, St. Evremond, Dryden, Addison, Voltaire, and Burke. The course will also examine both twentieth-century comparative approaches to epic (e.g., Auerbach, Curtius, Frye) and more recent debates within comparative literature in order to assess continuities and discontinuities in critical method and goals. Students will be encouraged to write final papers on subjects and authors of their choice while addressing issues treated in the course.
Robert von Hallberg
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 ComLit Grad students and PhD students in English Language and Literature. Fulfills the core course requirement for CompLit students. A course on the methods and procedures of a few poet-critics of the 19th and 20th centuries: Matthew Arnold, R. W. Emerson, Paul Valery, T. S. Eliot, William Empson, Charles Bernstein. To what extent is the history of criticism a record of the work of poet-critics? Are these writers models for contemporary critics? Insofar as they are, how? Insofar as they are not, why not? This course will focus to some extent on the essay form and on prose style.
Marxism and Modern Culture
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., art history and possibly history. It is not suitable for students in the social sciences.
Love's Books, Love's Looks: Textual and Visual Perspectives on the Roman de la Rose
=CDIN 41400, ARTH 42208, FREN 31403, GNDR 31600
Daisy Delogu, Aden Kumler
The course will initiate students into the complex allegorical narrative of the Roman de la Rose and its images. Through discussion of topically organized scholarship on the Rose and its historical ambient the seminar will provide students with the historical and historiographical orientation required for sophisticated interpretation of the work. The seminar will provide a setting for discussion and debate that draws from the special disciplinary skills of seminar participants and works toward a more integrated and mutually engaging conversation about how we can work to 'see' the Rose collaboratively.
The goal of this course is to expand 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 resurgence of Jewish American literature since 1945, and we discuss how recent Jewish American novels have renewed the engagement with the Yiddish literary tradition. Readings are by I. B. Singer, Chaim Grade, Saul Bellow, Cynthia Ozick, Philip Roth, Bernard Malamud, Grace Paley, Jonathan Safran Foer, Art Spiegelman, and Michael Chabon.
Gods, Titans, and the Ode
Mark Payne, David Wray
This seminar has a double focus: a reading of selected odes of Pindar with emphasis on the gods and titans; and a comparative study of the Pindaric tradition in Latin and European literature, including Horace, Ronsard, Hoelderlin, Klopstock, Celan, Thomas Gray, Wordsworth, and Whitman. Course requirement: a reading knowledge of at least one of the following languages: Greek, Latin, French, German.
Poems and Songs
=CDIN 41600, MUSI 42309
Robert von Hallberg, Travis Jackson
This seminar will be directed to graduate students in Music and in English and Comparative Literature. We intend to bring together students from the graduate programs in these two departments in hope of encouraging interdisciplinary collaboration by creating occasions for the swapping of interpretive skills. We want to enable musicologists to draw on some of the methods and procedures of textual interpretation that are familiar to students of poetry; and literature students, to draw on some of the elaborate methods and even devices of formal analysis of music. We think that we can best serve the needs of musicology students by attending displaying some of the techniques of literary interpretation that are brought to bear on canonical short poems. Likewise we mean to offer to literature students an opportunity to take seriously the notion that the lyric is a genre of musical composition. Our objective too is to overcome the common distinction between mass and elite culture by focusing on song lyrics as a genre of popular poetry. The seminar will focus on potential overlap between songs—largely popular songs—and canonical poetry.
The Moral and Political Philosophy of Foucault
A close reading of Michel Foucault's Surveller et punir. Naissance de la prison . Some attention will also be given to the debates provoked by this book, and to the political activities of the groupe d'information sur les prisons. Reading knowledge of French is required.
=CDIN 51200, ENGL 59303, SLAV 40200, GRMN 51200
Robert Bird, Loren Kruger
This seminar uses the theory and practice of translating texts of theory, criticism, philosophy and other genres of disciplinary inquiry to explore the boundaries between disciplines. Authors may include: T.W. Adorno, Walter Benjamin, Jacques Derrida, Umberto Eco, Jos Ortega y Gasset, Roman Jakobson, Friedrich Schleiermacher and Viktor Shklovsky, and current theorists whose work raises questions of translation directly or indirectly such as Franz Fanon, Nestor Garca Canclini, and Philip Lewis. Topics include the translation of sacred and quasi sacred texts (including Marx) as well as contemporary theory. Open to all humanities *PhDs* including philosophy, visual art, and all language departments, as well as the divinity school and the committee on social thought. Cultural social sciences (eg anthropology or history) by application. PQ ACTIVE working knowledge of at least one source language: French, German, Italian, Russian, Spanish; possibly Dutch. Admission to seminar based on a short in-class translation. Requirements: formal presentation on an existing translation and final translation of an as yet untranslated text of theory, philosophy or criticism.
Montage: History, Theory, Practice
This seminar will look at the history of editing from early attempts at multi-shot sequencing to self-conscious experiments in intellectual montage; at editing techniques ranging from cross-cutting to CGI sequences; and at the variety of montage theories from Eisenstein and Pudovkin to Bazin. We will test Eisenstein's hypothesis about biological foundations of temporality in art; connect dynamic patterns of film editing to Daniel Stern's study The Present Moment; link temporal contours of cutting to theories of gendered narratology.