Courses

23123 Cybernetics and Trans Identities

(ENGL 23123)

This course is an examination into the ways in which theorizations of trans identity have been bound to discourses concerning cyborgs and cybernetics. On one hand, we will look into the ways in which medico-technological discourses have inscribed and produced the limits for conceptualizing trans-ness. On the other, we will examine how trans self-narratives have mobilized cybernetic language to parasitically produce autonomous discourses. The over-arching questions of this class will be: how should we engage concepts, such as the cybernetic and the prosthetic, that have been used towards the disenfranchisement of trans identities, while simultaneously have been re-inscribed as emancipatory concepts? How should we tell the histories of these discourses? How do they affect, produce, contain, and enliven contemporary worlds of trans identities and existences?

This course will, from its onset, be interdisciplinary in nature, both in terms of the academic disciplines from which we choose our texts (trans theory, queer theory, critical race theory, psychoanalysis, philosophy, new media theory, literary criticism, etc.) and also through an engagement with various genres and media, engaging fiction, film and visual art, as ways to further expand and develop our critical investigations. Readings will include works by figures such as Karen Barad, Jean Baudrillard, Mel Chen, Gilles Deleuze, Donna Haraway, Beatriz Preciado, Jasbir Puar, Gayle Salamon, Sandy Stone, Alexander Weheliye.

Alexander Wolfson
2019-2020 Autumn

24405 Kieslowski's French Cinema

(CMST 24405/34405, FNDL 25312, REES 31002)

Krzysztof Kieślowski's The Decalogue and The Double Life of Veronique catapulted the Polish director to the international scene. His subsequent French triptych Blue, White, Red turned out to be his last works that altered his image and legacy to affirm his status as an auteur and a representative of the transnational cinema. We discuss how in his virtual universe of parallel histories and repeated chances, captured with visually and aurally dazzling artistry, the possibility of reconstituting one's identity, triggered by tragic loss and betrayal, reveals an ever-ambiguous reality. By focusing on the filmmaker's dissolution of the thing-world, often portrayed on the verge of vague abstraction of (in)audibility or (un)transparency, this course bridges his cinema with the larger concepts of postmodern subjectivity and possibility of metaphysics. The course concludes with the filmmaker's contribution to world cinema. All along, we read selections from Kieślowski's and Piesiewicz's screen scripts, Kieślowski's own writings and interviews, as well as from the abundant criticism of his French movies. All materials are in English.

Bozena Shallcross
2019-2020 Autumn

25001 Foucault and the History of Sexuality

(FNDL 22001, FREN 24801, GNSE 23100, HIPS 24300, KNOW 27002)

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.

Arnold I. Davidson, Kristen Collins
2019-2020 Autumn

29801 BA Project and Workshop: Comparative Literature

This workshop begins in Autumn Quarter and continues through the middle of Spring Quarter. While the BA 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 is assigned in the Spring Quarter, based partly on participation in the workshop and partly on the quality of the BA paper. Attendance at each class section required.

2019-2020 Autumn

20711 The Jewish Graphic Novel

(CMLT 20711 / NEHC 26062 / RLST 26062 / SIGN 26062)

Over the past decade, there has been an explosion of “graphic novels” aimed at adult readers concerning Jewish society, history, and religion. This course explores the history of comics through the lens of its Jewish creators and Jewish themes, and the history of twentieth century Jewish culture through the lens of graphic storytelling. We learn to interpret this complex art form that combines words and hand-drawn images, translating temporal progression into a spatial form. Reading American, European, and Israeli narratives, our discussions will focus on autobiographical and journalistic accounts of uprooting, immigration, conflict, and loss. Authors whose work we will study include: Art Spiegelman, Rutu Modan, Leela Corman, Joann Sfar, Joe Sacco, R. Crumb.

2019-2020 Spring

22120 Clair de Lune: Etude comparée de la lune dans le Romantisme littéraire et musical

(FREN 22120)

Le poète romantique éprouve une fascination pour la nuit, lieu des mystères et des passions cachées. La lune est l’élément sublime par excellence, déchirant la nuit, confondant mystère et grandiose. Le thème du clair de lune devient un thème de prédilection du Romantisme, et en particulier des peintres, des poètes et des compositeurs. A travers une étude des œuvres majeures du Romantisme français et allemand (poésies, tableaux, lieders et sonates), nous tenterons d’examiner les différentes phases de la lune, afin de comprendre la versatilité des enjeux et des topoï du Romantisme. C’est l’occasion de revoir des genres littéraires consacrés (le sonnet, la ballade) mais aussi des genres musicaux ou picturaux traditionnels du Romantisme (le paysage surplombant, le nocturne, le lied).

La lune entraîne le poète romantique dans une rêverie, et revêt tantôt un rôle consolateur (dans une symbiose parfaite avec la nature), tantôt un rôle mélancolique, le poète y voyant le symbole de la féminité et de l’être aimé. Parfois, le mystère de la lune qui avait d’abord frappé le poète laisse place à l’évocation de la mort ou d’une menace. Il arrive enfin que le poète se trouve embarqué dans un voyage extraordinaire : la lune devient alors le fantasme d’une destination surnaturelle et idéale. Nous adopterons également une perspective comparatiste dans ce cours, en examinant les liens entre texte et image, ou bien entre musique et contexte politique.

Maximilien Novak
2019-2020 Spring

25113 "In the Beginning": Origin, Style, and Transformation in the King James Version Matrix

(ENGL 25113, JWSC 27703)

The 400th anniversary of the King James Bible (KJV) set off a series of events and texts dedicated to the great influence of this literary classic—a vernacular English Bible from 1611. What is it about the KJV that has so obsessed readers and writers? How has it become part of and affected world literature? Are there competing ways of conceiving the biblical text in English literature? In this course, we will trace some of the KJV’s thematic and stylistic influences in global Anglophone literature; sometimes we will deal with direct allusion and rewriting, and other times we will study the possibilities of more tenuous links. In parallel to this work, we will problematize the KJV’s astounding centrality by: examining some pre-KJV literature and alternative early-modern and 20th century translations (particularly as these intersect with Jewish tradition); attending to subversive and postcolonial literary uses of the translation; and close-reading the political and ideological motivations behind certain forms of critical adulation. Texts examined may include works by authors such as George Peele, William Shakespeare, Herman Melville, William Faulkner, Toni Morrison, Cynthia Ozick, Zora Neale Hurston, Chinua Achebe and Wole Soyinka.

2019-2020 Spring

29801 BA Project and Workshop: Comparative Literature

This workshop begins in Autumn Quarter and continues through the middle of Spring Quarter. While the BA 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 is assigned in the Spring Quarter, based partly on participation in the workshop and partly on the quality of the BA paper. Attendance at each class section required.

2019-2020 Spring

29914 Jewish Diasporas: The Exilic Condition and the Parable of Longing

(JWSC 29914)

This course examines the representations of the home across national literatures in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. More specifically, we will explore how the concept of home—real or imagined—is treated in instances of exile and migration that result in cultural hybridity. To explore the ambiguous relationship between home and homeland, students will engage with texts written by Jewish authors of different nationalities. We will focus on the European and Israeli context, exploring how the notion of home or homelessness, as well as historical changes, compel us to rethink the making of a Jewish home. We will also consider how the representation o homes and a homesickness/homeness dialectics shift across cultures and languages, paying particular attention to figures like the European Jew, the Wandering Jew, the Zionist Jew, the Hebrew Jew, and the Israeli Jew. We will trace the Jewish sense of displacement through the interplay between language and place, as we consider the literary representations of the Eastern European Shtetl, Vienna, Berlin, and Jerusalem. We will also consider the choice of language, and space of language as home.

2019-2020 Spring

20109 Comparative Methods in the Humanities

(ENGL 28918)

This course introduces models of comparative analysis across national literatures, genres, and media. The readings pair primary texts with theoretical texts, each pair addressing issues of interdisciplinary comparison. They include Orson Welles’s “Citizen Kane” and Coleridge’s poem “Kubla Khan”; Benjamin’s “The Storyteller,” Kafka’s “Josephine the Mouse Singer,” Deleuze and Guattari, Kafka: Toward a Minor Literature, and Mario Vargas Llosa’s The Storyteller; Victor Segalen’s Stèles; Fenollosa and Pound’s “The Chinese Character as a Medium of Poetry” and Eliot Weinberger’s Nineteen Ways of Looking at Wang Wei; Mérimée, “Carmen,” Bizet, Carmen, and the film adaptation U-Carmen e-Khayelitsha (South Africa, 2005); Gorky’s and Kurosawa’s The Lower Depths; Molière, Tartuffe, Dostoevsky, The Village Stepanchikovo and its Inhabitants, and Bakhtin, “Discourse in the Novel”; Gogol, The Overcoat, and Boris Eikhenbaum, “How Gogol’s Overcoat Is Made.”

2019-2020 Winter

24189 Comparative Mythology: Methods and Madness

(RLST 24189, CLCV 21919)

Comparative Mythology has been one of the most controversial disciplines in the Humanities. Interdisciplinarity at its finest and most erratic, different definitions of Comparative Mythology have found their roots in linguistics, psychology, the history of religions, structuralism, and many more hybrid fields. Haunted by the question of “What is Myth?” and equally concerned with the toolkits that allow us to make sense of myths, it has been the source of constant fascination as an important part of nineteenth- and twentieth-century intellectual history. Its ambitions cut across boundaries of time, geography, and languages. Its results have inspired revolutions in the academy with critical political consequences, building and destroying nationalistic essentialisms, forging communities and tearing them apart. In this course we will review its complex history and attempt to assert its role as an important catalyst of academic debate by focusing on the manner in which myth and poetry—two often inscrutable and difficult-to-define categories of cultural production—so often appear to work alongside each other in order to probe at ineffable mysteries whilst developing dazzling ideological programs that can grant us a purchase on the myriad ways in which poets, scribes, scholars, religious leaders, political agitators, and university professors have attempted to make sense of the world.

We will encounter myths from around the world. Readings will be drawn from Homer, Latin poetry, the Vedic Hymns, Norse poetry, Anatolian and Mesopotamian texts (such as Gilgamesh), Native American traditions, Chinese stories, and North African myths.

2019-2020 Winter

27703 Nothing New Under the Sun? "Adapting" in Twentieth-Century Jewish Literature

(ENGL 27713, JWSC 27713)

How do works as disparate as Jerry Siegel and Joe Schuster’s first Superman comics, Joseph Roth’s moving Job (1930), or Cynthia Ozick’s golem novel The Puttermesser Papers (1997) treat the histories, genres, and texts they (arguably) refashion? In this course, we will take on and close-read a variety of fictions, treating these both as stand-alone works of art in their own right as well as participants in a kind of literary lineage (and sometimes a very non-linear one!). With the help of Linda Hutcheon’s Theory of Adaptation and other theorists, we will engage with different kinds of transfer (Bible to Novel, Fiction to Film/Television; Archive to Drama; Original to Translation, etc.). We will explore different ways of understanding “adaptation” as a concept across linguistic, temporal, and geographic axes, and we will also consider texts and stories which push against and challenge definitions of adaptation. Ultimately, we will ask: What counts as adaptation, and why adapt? Does the art of adaptation and remix take on particular resonances for Jewish diasporic and immigrant writers in the twentieth century? How do these authors and creators pull “original” works, stories and history into new contexts? How do they draw readers and audiences in to alternate, unfamiliar forms? How do popular genres deal with the weight of tradition? How do these fictions negotiate between the familiar and the strange, and to what ends?

2019-2020 Winter

28881 Secrecy and Exemplarity: On Parables and Their Interpretation, from the Bible to Walter Benjamin

(JWSC 28881, GRMN 28881, RLST 28881, ENGL 28881)

A parable – usually defined as “a short narrative told for an ulterior purpose” – should be easy to understand, given its apparent simplicity and didacticism. So why does it turn out to be so difficult, in practice, to interpret parables? From Jesus’s parables and Plato’s famous parable of the cave onward, parables have led reader after reader to the disturbing realization that it might in fact be theparables which read their interpreters, and not the other way around! In this course, we’ll ask how it is that this particular literary form so deftly articulates the relations between text and reader, narrative and interpretation, literature and religion, secrecy and power, sign and meaning, concealment and revelation, fiction and truth. The course serves as both an introduction to the history of the many ways interpreters have engaged the parabolic form in religious, literary, and philosophical contexts, on the one hand, and a chance to develop the intensity and rigor of our own close-reading practices, on the other. Besides biblical and rabbinic parables, we will read parables in works by Plato, Maimonides, La Fontaine, Pascal, G.E. Lessing, Kant, Andersen, Hawthorne, Kierkegaard, Nietzsche, Kafka, W. Benjamin, and O. Welles.
 

2019-2020 Winter

29801 BA Project and Workshop: Comparative Literature

This workshop begins in Autumn Quarter and continues through the middle of Spring Quarter. While the BA 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 is assigned in the Spring Quarter, based partly on participation in the workshop and partly on the quality of the BA paper. Attendance at each class section required.

2019-2020 Winter

29914 Jewish Diasporas: The Exilic Condition and the Parable of Longing

This course examines the representations of the home across national literatures in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. More specifically, we will explore how the concept of home—real or imagined—is treated in instances of exile and migration that result in cultural hybridity. To explore the ambiguous relationship between home and homeland, students will engage with texts written by Jewish authors of different nationalities. We will focus on the European and Israeli context, exploring how the notion of home or homelessness, as well as historical changes, compel us to rethink the making of a Jewish home. We will also consider how the representation o homes and a homesickness/homeness dialectics shift across cultures and languages, paying particular attention to figures like the European Jew, the Wandering Jew, the Zionist Jew, the Hebrew Jew, and the Israeli Jew. We will trace the Jewish sense of displacement through the interplay between language and place, as we consider the literary representations of the Eastern European Shtetl, Vienna, Berlin, and Jerusalem. We will also consider the choice of language, and space of language as home.

2019-2020 Winter

27517 Metaphysics, Morbidity, & Modernity: Mann’s The Magic Mountain

(CMLT 27517 / FNDL 27517)

Our main task in this course is to explore in detail one of the most significant novels of the twentieth century, Thomas Mann’s The Magic Mountain. But this novel is also a window onto the entirety of modern European thought and it provides, at the same time, a telling perspective of the crisis of European culture prior to and following on World War I. It is, in Thomas Mann’s formulation, a time-novel: a novel about its time, but also a novel about human being in time. For anyone interested in the configuration of European intellectual life in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, Mann’s great (and challenging) novel is indispensible reading. Lectures will relate Mann’s novel to its great European counterparts (e.g., Proust, Joyce, Musil), to the traditions of European thought from Voltaire to Georg Lukacs, from Schopenhauer to Heidegger, from Marx to Max Weber.

David Wellbery
2019-2020 Winter

21101/31101 Roman Elegy

(LATN 21100/31100)

This course examines the development of the Latin elegy from Catullus to Ovid. Our major themes are the use of motifs and topics and their relationship to the problem of poetic persona.

2019-2020 Autumn

22301/32301 War and Peace

(CMLT 22301 / CMLT 32301 / ENGL 28912 / ENGL 32302 / FNDL 27103 / HIST 23704 / REES 30001)

Tolstoy’s novel is at once a national epic, a treatise on history, a spiritual meditation, and a masterpiece of realism. This course presents a close reading of one of the world’s great novels, and of the criticism that has been devoted to it, including landmark works by Victor Shklovsky, Boris Eikhenbaum, Isaiah Berlin, and George Steiner. (B, G)

William Nickell
2019-2020 Spring

22400/32400 History of International Cinema I: The Silent Era

(ARTH 28500/38500, ARTV 20002, CMST 48500, ENGL 29300/48700, MAPH 33600)

This course provides a survey of the history of cinema from its emergence in the mid-1890s to the transition to sound in the late 1920s. We will examine the cinema as a set of aesthetic, social, technological, national, cultural, and industrial practices as they were exercised and developed during this 30-year span. Especially important for our examination will be the exchange of film techniques, practices, and cultures in an international context. We will also pursue questions related to the historiography of the cinema, and examine early attempts to theorize and account for the cinema as an artistic and social phenomenon.

Allyson Field
2019-2020 Autumn

23301/33301 Balkan Folklore

(REES 39009 CMLT 23301, ANTH 35908, NEHC 30568, CMLT 33301, ANTH 25908, NEHC 20568,)

Vampires, fire-breathing dragons, vengeful mountain nymphs. 7/8 and other uneven dance beats, heart-rending laments and a living epic tradition.This course is an overview of Balkan folklore from historical, political and anthropological, perspectives. We seek to understand folk tradition as a dynamic process and consider the function of different folklore genres in the imagining and maintenance of community and the socialization of the individual. We also experience this living tradition first-hand through visits of a Chicago-based folk dance ensemble, “Balkan Dance.”

Angelina Illeva
2019-2020 Winter

33819 Narratology of Tears: Goethe, Sterne, and the Sentimental Novels

(SCTH 33819, GRMN 33819)

This seminar will, with a certain intensity of focus, examine two masterpieces of the “sentimental” mode: Laurence Sterne’s A Sentimental Journey Through France and Italy (1768) and Goethe’s Die Leiden des jungen Werther (1774). Since these novels are both generically self-reflective and, each in its own way, boldly experimental, they are well-suited for an analysis oriented toward the theory of narrative. Comparisons will be drawn to passages in Samuel Richardson’s Clarissa, or, The History of a Young Lady (1747-8) and Rousseau’s Julie, ou La nouvelle Heloise (1761). We will also take a forward look at Pierre Choderlos de Laclos’ Liaisons dangereuses (1782), which may be considered the destruction of the form. In addition to fundamental contributions to narratology, works by Roland Barthes (Fragments of a Lover’s Discourse), Albrecht Koschorke (Körperströme und Schriftverkehr. Mediologie des 18. Jahrhunderts), and James Chandler (An Archeology of Sympathy. The Sentimental Mode in Literature and Cinema) will be important points of reference. As always, Schiller’s Über naïve und sentimentalische Dichtung will prove indispensable.

David Wellbery
2019-2020 Autumn

24104/34104 Representing Revolutions

(CMLT 34104 ENGL 24114 ENGL 34114)

TBD

2019-2020 Spring

24104/34104 Representing Revolutions

(ENGL 24114/34114)
2019-2020 Spring

24111/34111 The Soviet Empire

(NEHC 24110/34110, REES 24110/34110)

What kind of empire was the Soviet Union? Focusing on the central idea of Eurasia, we will explore how discourses of gender, sexuality and ethnicity operated under the multinational empire. How did communism shape the state's regulation of the bodies of its citizens? How did genres from the realist novel to experimental film challenge a cohesive patriarchal, Russophone vision of Soviet Eurasia? We will examine how writers and filmmakers in the Caucasus and Central Asia answered Soviet Orientalist imaginaries, working through an interdisciplinary archive drawing literature and film from the Soviet colonial 'periphery' in the Caucasus and Central Asia as well as writings about the hybrid conception of Eurasia across linguistics, anthropology, and geography. 

2019-2020 Autumn

24272/34272 The Ancestral

(SCTH 34272)

Recent work in history and anthropology has stressed the need for deeper models of origins and relations, perhaps even dispensing with “prehistory” as an alternative to more familiar forms of historical self-understanding. This class will look at how the ancestral in literature imagines such deep forms of historical belonging, staging modes of revenance whose cryptic vitalism challenges the phenomenological basis of new materialism. Readings will include Martin Heidegger, Ronald Hutton, Ethan Kleinberg, Quentin Meillassoux, Hans Ruin, and Anna Tsing, poetry by Li He and Osip Mandelstam, weird fiction by H. P. Lovecraft, Arthur Machen and Algernon Blackwood, and futurology by Cicely Hamilton, Jean Hegland, Sarah Moss, and Will Self.

2019-2020 Spring

23401/34301 The Burden of History: The Nation and its Lost Paradise

(HIST 24005, HIST 34005, NEHC 20573/30573, REES 39013)

What makes it possible for the imagined communities called nations to command the emotional attachments that they do?  This course considers some possible answers to Benedict Anderson’s question on the basis of material from the Balkans. We will examine the transformation of the scenario of paradise, loss, and redemption into a template for a national identity narrative through which South East European nations retell their Ottoman past.  With the help of Žižek’s theory of the subject as constituted by trauma and Kant’s notion of the sublime, we will contemplate the national fixation on the trauma of loss and the dynamic between victimhood and sublimity.

Angelina Ilieva
2019-2020 Autumn

24554/34554 Mysticism and Modernity

(ENGL 24554/34554, GNSE 24554/34554)

This course will explore the impact of medieval and early modern mysticism on modern theories of sex, gender, and sexuality. We will begin by examining some of the most highly-cited texts from the Christian mystical tradition and by paying particular attention to the significance of gender, eroticism, and embodiment in these texts. We will then explore the circulation of these texts in modern theoretical projects on sex, gender, and sexuality with particular emphasis on existentialism, psychoanalysis, and deconstruction. Why does Lacan cite Hadewijch in order to articulate his notion of feminine jouissance? Why does Beauvoir hold up Teresa of Ávila as an exemplar of existential authenticity? Why does Derrida follow Pseudo-Dionysius but not Hadewijch in his meditation on negative theology? And how might these intellectual genealogies give rise to contemporary work in queer, feminist, and queer of color critique? Ultimately, by putting premodern and modern texts into dialogue, this course will enable students not only to develop the skill of diachronic analysis but also to challenge the assumption that mysticism and theory are at all apolitical.

2019-2020 Spring

25020/35020 Culture and Zionism

(JWSC 26205, NEHC 25020/35020)

This seminar will examine the intersection of culture and Zionism. We will begin by considering the historical formation referred to as "cultural Zionism" and examining its ideological underpinnings. Other topics include: Hebrew revival, the role of culture in the Zionist revolution, Israeli culture as Zionist culture. Readings include: Ahad Haam, Haim Nahman Bialik, S.Y. Agnon, Orly Kastel-Blum, Edward Said, Benjamin Harshav.  

2019-2020 Autumn

25025/35025 Gender and Translation

(REES 25025/35025, GNSE 25025/35025)

The course will consider translation -- both theory and practice -- in relation to queer studies and gender and women's studies. Authors will include Naomi Seidman, Monique Balbuena, Yevgeniy Fiks, Raquel Salas Rivera, Kate Briggs, and others. For the final essay, students may write a research paper or translation project.

2019-2020 Winter

25801/35801 Machiavelli and Machiavellism

(FNDL 21603, ITAL 33001)

This course is a comprehensive introduction to Machiavelli’s The Prince in light of his vast and varied literary corpus and European reception. The course includes discussion of Machiavelli as playwright ("The Mandrake"), fiction writer ("Belfagor," "The Golden Ass"), and historian ("Discourses," "Florentine Histories"). We will also closely investigate the emergence of myths surrounding Machiavelli (Machiavellism and anti-Machiavellism) in Italy (Guicciardini, Botero, Boccalini), France (Bodin and Gentillet), Spain (Ribadeneyra), and Northern Europe (Hobbes, Grotius, Spinoza) during the Counter Reformation and beyond.

Rocco Rubini
2019-2020 Autumn

26002/36002 Gramsci

(FNDL 26206, ITAL 36000)

In this course we read selections from Antonio Gramsci's Letters and Prison Notebooks side by side with their sources. Gramsci's influential interpretations of the Italian Renaissance, Risorgimento, and Fascism are reviewed testi alla mano with the aim of reassessing some major turning points in Italian intellectual history. Readings and notions introduced include, for the Renaissance, Petrarch (the cosmopolitan intellectual), Savonarola (the disarmed prophet), Machiavelli (the modern prince), and Guicciardini (the particulare); for Italy's long Risorgimento, Vico (living philology), Cuoco (passive revolution), Manzoni (questione della lingua), Gioberti (clericalism), and De Sanctis (the Man of Guicciardini); and Croce (the anti-Croce) and Pirandello (theater and national-popular literature), for Italy's twentieth century.

Rocco Rubini
2019-2020 Autumn

36012 19th Century French Poetry in Translation: Tradition and Revolution

(ENGL 36012, FREN 26019, FREN 36019, SCTH 26012)

A study of modern French lyric poetry: Tradition and Revolution, Poetry and Politics, the seedbed of Modernism. Desbordes-Valmore, Baudelaire, Mallarme, Verlaine, Rimbaud, Apollinaire. Texts will be read in English with reference to the French originals. Close reading, references to poetry in English, and focus on problems in translation. Students with French should read the poems in the original. Class discussion to be conducted in English; critical essays to be written in English. An extra weekly session will be scheduled for discussion in French, for French-speakers.

Rosanna Warren
2019-2020 Autumn

26219/36219 Domestic Tragedies

(CMLT 26219 / CMLT 36219 / GRMN 26219 / TAPS 26219 / TAPS 36219)

From its inception in ancient Greece tragedy feeds on a transgression. The ideology and economy of kleos (glory) predicates that the male hero seeks the accumulation of excellence and prestige elsewhere, far from home on the battlefield, so that he can reap the fruits of his heroic labor in peace upon his return (nostos). Like Homer’s Odyssey, in which its eponymous hero turns his home into a battlefield when he slays his wife’s suitors, tragedy routinely violates the relegation of violence to a distant place by letting it back into the house (oikos). What makes these tragedies tragic, is then the return of violence into the home. The seminar will trace the contradictory double coding of the house/home in tragedy as a place of refuge and safety as well as a site of unthinkable, because familial violence. We will start by reading a few representative Greek tragedies alongside Aristotle’s Poetics, and will have to skip over Early Modern theater (e.g. Shakespeare and Racine) in order to arrive at Bourgeois tragedy, which conceived itself programmatically as domestic. We will examine French examples of the genre (Diderot) as well their German counterparts (Lessing, Schiller, and), and continue with its latest flowering in Scandinavia (Ibsen, Strindberg). We will conclude with the Beckett’s deconstruction of the domestic tragedy in his Endgame.

Christopher Wild
2019-2020 Winter

26311/36311 Global Speculative Fiction

This course examines literary and cinematic works of speculative fiction in a comparative context. An expansive genre that encompasses science fiction, fantasy, magic realism, horror, as well as utopian and dystopian literature, speculative fiction envisions alternate, parallel, possible, or imagined worlds. These worlds often exhibit characteristics such as: scientific and technological advancements; profound social, environmental, or political transformations; time or space travel; life on other planets; artificial intelligence; and evolved, hybrid, or new species. The course reflects on how these texts and films reimagine the past and the present in order to offer radical visions of desirable or undesirable futures. To that end, we will consider how this genre interrogates existential questions about what it means to be human, the nature of consciousness, the relationship between mind/body, thinking/being, and self/other, as well as planetary concerns confronting our species. Literary and cinematic works will be paired with theoretical readings that critically frame speculative and science fiction in relation to questions of gender, race, class, colonialism, bio-politics, human rights, as well as environmental and social justice. In addition to exploring speculative fiction as a way of reading and interpreting the universe, we will examine its generic and aesthetic qualities across a variety of subgenres (Afrofuturism, cyberpunk, steampunk, climate fiction).

2019-2020 Winter

26660/36660 The Rise of the Global New Right

(ENGL 26660/36660, REES 26660/36660, SIGN 26050, CRES 26660/36660)

This course traces the intellectual genealogies of the rise of a Global New Right in relation to the contexts of late capitalist neoliberalism, the fall of the Soviet Union, as well as the rise of social media. The course will explore the intertwining political and intellectual histories of the Russian Eurasianist movement, Hungarian Jobbik, the American Traditional Workers Party, the French GRECE, Greek Golden Dawn, and others through their published essays, blogs, vlogs and social media. Perhaps most importantly, the course asks: can we use f-word (fascism) to describe this problem? In order to pose this question we will explore the aesthetic concerns of the New Right in relation to postmodern theory, and the affective politics of nationalism. This course thus frames the rise of a global new right interdisciplinary and comparatively as a historical, geopolitical and aesthetic problem.

2019-2020 Autumn

26885/36885 Queer Theory

(ENGL 26885/36885, GNSE 26885/36885, )

This course aims to offer a foundation in queer theoretical texts. In order to understand the contested definitions of the term “queer” and explore the contours of the field’s major debates, we will work to historicize queer theory’s emergence in the 1980s and 1990s amidst the AIDS crisis. Reading texts by key figures like Foucault, Sedgwick, Butler, Lorde, Bersani, Crimp, Warner, Halperin, Dinshaw, Edelman, Anzaldúa, Ferguson, and Muñoz in addition to prominent issues of journals like GLQ, differences, and Signs, we will approach these pieces as historical artifacts and place these theorists within the communities of intellectuals, activists, and artists out of which their work emerged. We will, thus, imagine queer theory as a literary practice of mournful and militant devotion, trace queer theory’s relationship to feminism and critical race theory, critique the hagiographic tendency of the academic star system, and interrogate the assumptions of queer theory’s secularity.

2019-2020 Winter

29023/39023 Returning the Gaze: The West and the Rest

(CMLT 29023 / CMLT 39023 / HIST 23609 / HIST 33609 / NEHC 29023 / NEHC 39023 / REES 39023)

Aware of being observed. And judged. Inferior... Abject… Angry... Proud… This course provides insight into identity dynamics between the “West,” as the center of economic power and self-proclaimed normative humanity, and the “Rest,” as the poor, backward, volatile periphery. We investigate the relationship between South East European self-representations and the imagined Western gaze. Inherent in the act of looking at oneself through the eyes of another is the privileging of that other’s standard. We will contemplate the responses to this existential position of identifying symbolically with a normative site outside of oneself—self-consciousness, defiance, arrogance, self-exoticization—and consider how these responses have been incorporated in the texture of the national, gender, and social identities in the region. Orhan Pamuk, Ivo Andrić, Nikos Kazantzakis, Aleko Konstantinov, Emir Kusturica, Milcho Manchevski.

Angelina Illeva
2019-2020 Winter

29024/39024 States of Surveillance

(REES 39024)

What does it feel to be watched and listened to all the time? Literary and cinematic works give us a glimpse into the experience of living under surveillance and explore the human effects of surveillance--the fraying of intimacy, fracturing sense of self, testing the limits of what it means to be human. Works from the former Soviet Union (Solzhenitsyn, Abram Tertz, Andrey Zvyagintsev), former Yugoslavia (Ivo Andrić, Danilo Kiš, Dušan Kovačević), Romania (Norman Manea, Cristian Mungiu), Bulgaria (Valeri Petrov), and Albania (Ismail Kadare).

Angelina Ilieva
2019-2020 Autumn

29120/39120 Renaissance Christian Epic: Tasso, Vida, Milton

(ENGL 29120/39120)

This course will focus upon the two most important Renaissance Christian epics, Torquato Tasso’s La Gerusalemme liberata/Jerusalem Delivered (first pub. 1581) and John Milton’s Paradise Lost (first pub. 1667), and two brief Biblical epics, Marco Girolamo Vida’s Christiad (1535) and Milton’s Paradise Regained (1671).  We will examine these four Renaissance epics as ambitious efforts to revive an ancient and pagan form in order to depict Christian and self-consciously modern visions.  We will consider how Renaissance epic poets imitate and emulate both their classical models (primarily Homer’s Iliad and Odyssey, Virgil’s Aeneid, and Ovid’s Metamorphoses) and Judeo-Christian sources (primarily the Bible); seek to forge an elevated and appropriate language for epic in Latin, Italian, and English; espouse new visions of the human, the heroic, and gender relations; and adumbrate distinctively modern national, imperial, and global ambitions.  All non-English texts will be read in translation, but students who can read Latin or Italian will be encouraged to read the originals.

 

2019-2020 Spring

29710/39710 Russian Anarchists, Revolutionary Samurai: Introduction to Russian-Japanese Intellectual Relations

This course introduces a current of Russian-Japanese exchange and cross-fertilization of ideas running from the late nineteenth century to now. In Tsarist times, many Russian revolutionaries escaped from Siberian imprisonment and exile to America and Western Europe via Japan where they temporarily taught Russian language and literature through the Russian democratic texts while observing the cooperative practices of Japanese commoners. This cross-fertilization of Russian pre-Marxist revolutionary thought with Japanese traditions of communal practice based on mutual aid resulted in a long and rich tradition of Japanese, anti-imperial, pacifist dissident thought, known as "cooperatist anarchism." Our focus will be on the historical role that Russia came to play in progressive thinking in Japan in its differentiation from the West and on knowledge production through cooperation and circulation of ideas among Russian and Japanese intellectuals. We will study the Japanese influence on the thought of Lev Mechnikov, Peter Kropotkin, and Lev Tolstoy; compare the visions of civilizational progress of the state modernizer Fukuzawa Yukichi and Japanese anarchists Kōtoku Shūsui and Ōsugi Sakae; and study the post-WW II continuation of the cooperatist anarchist tradition in the films of Kurosawa Akira, music of Takemitsu Toru, and writings of Ōe Kenzaburō. Secondary readings include:  Derek Offord, The Russian Revolutionary Movement in the 1880s; Sho Konishi, Anarchist Modernity: Cooperatism and Japanese-Russian Intellectual Relations in Modern Japan; Robert Thomas Tierney, Monster of the Twentieth Century: Kōtoku Shūsui and Japan's First Anti-imperialist Movement.

 

 

2019-2020 Spring

29714/39714 North Africa in Literature and Film

This course explores twentieth- and twenty-first century literary and cinematic works from the countries of North Africa. We will focus in particular on the region of Northwestern Africa known as the Maghreb—encompassing Algeria, Morocco, and Tunisia. Situated at the crossroads of Africa, the Middle East, and Europe, the Maghreb has a layered colonial past culminating in France’s brutal occupation of the region through the 1960s. Inflected by this colonial history, Maghrebi studies tends to privilege Francophone works while overlooking the region’s rich Arabic and indigenous traditions. Understanding the Maghreb as both a geopolitical as well as an imagined space, our course materials reflect the region’s diverse cultural histories and practices. We will consider the Maghreb’s ethnic, linguistic, and religious pluralism in dialogue with broader questions of cultural imperialism, orientalism, decolonization, and globalization. Fictional and cinematic works will be paired with relevant historical and theoretical readings. In light of the recent ‘Arab Spring’ catapulted by the Tunisian uprising in January 2011, we will also touch on contemporary social and political happenings in the region.

2019-2020 Spring

29714/39714 North Africa in Literature and Film

TBD

2019-2020 Spring

40101 Research Themes in South Asian Studies: Textual Transformations-From Manuscript to Print

(HIST 61802, SALC 40100)

This graduate course offers an introduction to the theory and practice of book history and print culture studies, a relatively recent and vibrant field of inquiry within South Asian Studies. The course will explore some of the main theoretical approaches, themes, and methodologies of the history of the book in comparative perspective, and discuss the specific conditions and challenges facing scholars of South Asian book history. Topics include orality and literacy, technologies of scribal and print production, the sociology of texts, authorship and authority, the print “revolution” and knowledge formation under British colonial rule, the legal existence of books, the economy of the book trade, popular print, readership and consumption. We will also engage with the text as material artifact and look at the changing contexts, techniques, and practices of book production in the transition from manuscript to print.

Ulrike Stark
2019-2020 Autumn

50105 Literary Theory: Memisis

The focus of this seminar will be Erich Auerbach’s Mimesis, a book often held up as foundational and paradigmatic for the discipline of comparative literature. Close reading of its twenty chapters together with excerpts from its objects of study (from Homer to Virginia Woolf) will be framed by readings and discussion on the contexts of its production, the history of its reception, the limitations that have been imputed to its presuppositions and biases, and the generative potentials and significances it might continue to make available to the current and future practice of literary comparison.

2019-2020 Autumn

50205 Contemporary Critical Theory 1920-Present

(ENGL 50205)

This course (the second half of the required Comparative Literature introductory sequence) roams the cultural landscape transformed by Freud, Saussure, Shklovsky, the First World War, and the Russian Revolution. Readings from psychoanalytic, formalist and Marxist criticism, from the corresponding heresies, and their successors. The aim throughout is to locate theoretical texts in the polemical situations to which they originally were addressed, and others in which they subsequently were invoked.

2019-2020 Winter

50300 Catharsis, Tedium, and other Aesthetic Responses

(ENGL 50301, TAPS 50300)

This seminar examines the ramifications of catharsis, tedium and other forms of aesthetic response, in other words the relationship between effect and affect in and in response to performance, live, mediated and in reading. Beginning with Aristotle and present day responses to catharsis, we will investigate the kinds of aesthetic response invoked by theories of tragedy (esp Hegel), realism (authority, attachment and estrangement in Lukacs, Adorno, Brecht, Benjamin), as well as theories of pleasure (Barthes,  Derrida, Cixous) and tedium (Heidegger). We will also explore tedium through text and audio of The Hunchback Variations by local playwright Mickle Maher. We will conclude with, the potential and limitations of catharsis as an appropriate response to testimonial narrative in text and film during and after the dictatorship in Chile. An essential part of the discussion will be the problem of translating key theoretical terms, not only from one language to another but also from one theoretical discourse to another.

2019-2020 Autumn

59999 Comparative Literature Graduate Writing Workshop

Graduate writing workshop for PhD students in Comparative Literature to engage in various modes of writing, editing, and revision. Writing assignments may include developing conference papers, writing the dissertation prospectus, generating a chapter draft, curriculum vitae and letter of interest drafting, and other professional writing development to prepare students for the academic job market and writing in the academy.

2019-2020 Spring

CMLT 26912/CMLT 36912 20th Century Russian & South East European Emigre Literature

(CMLT 26912 / CMLT 36912 / REES 39010)

 

Being alienated from myself, as painful as that may be, provides me with that exquisite distance within which perverse pleasure begins, as well as the possibility of my imagining and thinking," writes Julia Kristeva in "Strangers to Ourselves," the book from which this course takes its title. The authors whose works we are going to examine often alternate between nostalgia and the exhilaration of being set free into the breathless possibilities of new lives. Leaving home does not simply mean movement in space. Separated from the sensory boundaries that defined their old selves, immigrants inhabit a warped, fragmentary, disjointed time. Immigrant writers struggle for breath-speech, language, voice, the very stuff of their craft resounds somewhere else. Join us as we explore the pain, the struggle, the failure, and the triumph of emigration and exile. Vladimir Nabokov, Joseph Brodsky, Marina Tsvetaeva, Nina Berberova, Julia Kristeva, Alexander Hemon, Dubravka Ugrešić, Norman Manea, Miroslav Penkov, Ilija Trojanow, Tea Obreht.

Angelina Illeva
2019-2020 Spring

CMLT 27512/CMLT 37512 Dream of the Red Chamber: Forgetting About the Author

(CMLT 37512 / EALC 27512 / EALC 37512 / FNDL 27512 / SCTH 37512)

The great Chinese-Manchu novel "Honglou meng" (ca. 1750) has been assigned one major author, Cao Xueqin, whose life has been the subject of much investigation. But before 1922 little was known about Cao, and interpreters of the novel were forced to make headway solely on the basis of textual clues. The so-called “Three Commentators” edition ("Sanjia ping Shitou ji") shows these readers at their creative, polemical, and far-fetched best. We will be reading the first 80 chapters of the novel and discussing its reception in the first 130 years of its published existence (1792-1922), with special attention to hermeneutical strategies and claims of authorial purpose. Familiarity with classical Chinese required.

2019-2020 Spring

CMLT 28120/CMLT 38120 Narratology Laboratory: Basic Concepts and Research Potential

(CMLT 28120 / CMLT 38120 / GRMN 28120)

This seminar is an introduction to the formal study of narrative. Its purpose is to provide students with a set of conceptual instruments that will be useful to them in a broad range of research contexts. Narratology, although it originated within in literary studies, is today an indispensable dimension of inquiry in the Human Sciences generally. Topics to be considered include: 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; 6) narrative in non-linguistic media. After a brief consideration of Aristotle’s Poetics, we will move on to fundamental contributions by (inter alia) Propp, Lévi-Strauss, Barthes, Greimas, Genette, Eco, Lotman, Marin, Ricoeur, finishing with recent work in analytic philosophy and cognitive science. There will be NO papers or examinations. Rather, the course material will be introduced in lectures and subgroups of course participants will carry out circumscribed projects of narratological research.

David Wellbery
2019-2020 Spring

CMLT 29710/CMLT 39710 Russian Anarchists, Revolutionary Samurai: Introduction to Russian-Japanese Intellectual Relations

TBD

2019-2020 Spring

CMLT 39801 Realism in the Novel

(FREN 39800)

A study of the way in which nineteenth-century narrative prose represents social/cultural conflicts and individual self-reliance.

2019-2020 Spring

24500 Literary Kierkegaard

(=FNDL 22700,GRMN 25200)

In this seminar, we read Kierkegaard's novellas, literary criticism, and aesthetic theory. Topics of discussion include irony, repetition, observation, history, and authorship.

2006-2007 Autumn

25300 The Metaphor of the Insect as a Social Critique: Women in Modern Hebrew Literature

(=NEHC 20460)

This course is an exploration of twentieth century Hebrew poetry and prose written by women. Through close reading of major works (in translation) by writers such as Dvora Baron, Elisheva, Yocheved Bat-Miriam, Rachel Blubstein, Ester Ra'ab, Lea Goldberg, Amalia Kahana- Carmon, Dalia Rabikovitch, Yona Wallach, and Orli Castel-Bloom, the course traces changes in themes and style and studies the emergence and the development of a woman's voice in modern Hebrew literature. Texts in English.

2006-2007 Autumn

25800 The Representation of Jesus in Modern Jewish Literature

(=JWSC 24800,NEHC 20457,RLST 26601)

This course examines the Jewish literary world's relation to the figure of Jesus from the end of the nineteenth century to the present. We study the transformations of Jesus through close readings of major works, both prose fiction and poetry, by Yiddish and Hebrew writers (e.g., Uri Zvi Greenberg, H. Leivick, Jacob Glatstein, S. Y. Agnon, Avraham Shlonsky, Natan Bistritzki, A. A. Kabak, Haim Hazaz, Zalman Shneior, Yigal Mosenzon, Avot Yeshurun, Nathan Zach, Yona Wallach, Yoel Hoffmann). Classes conducted in English, but students with knowledge of Hebrew are encouraged to read texts in the original.

2006-2007 Autumn

26000 Multi-Cultural Literatures in Medieval England

(=ENGL 15801,RLST 28301)

Course meets the critical/intellectual methods course requirement for students majoring in Comparative Literature. This course covers the Celtic tradition, Old and Middle English, Anglo-Norman French, and a late text from Scotland. Texts include: from Old English, Beowulf; from Irish, The Battle of Moytura and the Tain, and two of the immrana or voyages that concern Bran Son of Ferbal and Mael Duin; from Anglo-Norman French, The Lays of Marie de France; from Welsh, The Four Branches from the Mabinogion; from Middle English, selections from The Canterbury Tales and Sir Gawain and the Green Knight; and from Scotland, Dunbar.

2006-2007 Autumn

20300 Contemporary Drama: Alienation and Cruelty

(=ENGL 24502)

Course meets the critical/intellectual methods course requirement for students majoring in Comparative Literature. This course will take as its starting point two radical positions that rethink the nature and purpose of theatricality in the 20th Century: Brecht's idea of the alienation-effect and Artaud's theatre of cruelty. It will look at recent playwrights influenced by this tradition, including Heiner Müller, Bernard-Marie Koltès, Valère Novarina, Sarah Kane, Caryl Churchill, Tom Stoppard, David Mamet, Athol Fugard and Jon Fosse. Close attention will be given to how these plays are self-conscious of their own theatricality, and how this self-consciousness is related to these dramas' political message, their investigation into subjectivity, and their violence. All texts will be read in English, but students with knowledge of French or German will be encouraged to read the texts in the original.

2006-2007 Spring

23500 Gender and Literature in South Asia

(=GNDR 23001/33001,SALC 23002/33002)

Prior knowledge of South Asia not required. This course investigates representations of gender and sexuality, especially of females and the feminine in South Asian literature (i.e., from areas now included in the nations of Bangladesh, India, Nepal, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka). Topics include classical Indian literature and sexual motifs, the female voice as a devotional/literary stance, gendered nationalism, the feminist movements, class and gender, and women's songs. Texts in English.

2006-2007 Spring

24000 Fiction and Moral Life

(=FREN 24000/34000)

This course examines the moral concerns present in a representative selection of literary texts. Topics include love, power, justice, self-determination, self-knowledge, altruism, and individual and society. The reading assignments match philosophical and literary texts. Students majoring in French will be required to read some of the texts in the original French language.

2006-2007 Spring

25400 Contemporary Israeli Fiction

(=NEHC 20461)

This course examines the works of three major contemporary Israeli writers: Yehoshua Kenaz, Orly Castel-Bloom and Yoel Hoffmann. We will study the innovative use of style and genres in these works, as well as the new themes and agendas that they offer. Among the topics to be discussed are social and political critiques, minority representations, and relation to Jewish history and tradition. Classes conducted in English, but students with knowledge of Hebrew are encouraged to read texts in the original.

2006-2007 Spring

27100 Soil: Patriotism, Pollution, and Literature

(=CLCV 27406)

This class investigates the deployment of soil as both symbol and material fact in various texts and traditions, along with the commonly associated practices and concepts of agriculture, property, migration, race, nationhood, and belonging. Our primary and critical texts arrive not only from radically different cultures but also in radically different forms.

2006-2007 Spring

28000 Racine's Phdre: Text, Sources, and Translation

(=FNDL 29401,FREN 23201)

Course meets the critical/intellectual methods course requirement for students majoring in Comparative Literature. We read Racine's Phdre closely for its dramatic and poetic structures as well as its philosophical, psychological, and moral themes. We consider Racine's principal ancient sources, Euripides and Seneca, placing all three versions in their intellectual and aesthetic contexts. We study twentieth-century translations of Phèdre (Wilbur, Hughes) in light of translation theory and practice. Textual study is complemented by scene study performance. Classes conducted in English. Optional French discussion sessions offered weekly. French majors do all written work in French. Comparative Literature majors read one tragedy in the original (French, Latin, or Greek).

2006-2007 Spring

21600 Comparative Fairy Tale: The Brothers Grimm, H. C. Anderson, and Asbjørnsen and Moe

(=GRMN 28500,HUMA 28400,NORW 28500,SCAN 28500)

In this course, we compare familiar examples from three national traditions of the fairy tale, those of the Brothers Grimm (German) and H. C. Anderson (Danish), and the less familiar Norwegian tradition of Asbjørnsen and Moe.

2006-2007 Winter

26200 The Enlightenment and the Virtue of Selfishness in Its Historical Context

(=FREN 26200,HUMA 24904,ISHU 24904)

Course meets the critical/intellectual methods course requirement for students majoring in Comparative Literature. French majors and minors must read in French and do all written work in French for French credit. The overarching aim of this course is to examine the centrality of selfishness as a moral attribute to French literature and thought of the long eighteenth-century. As such, we relate the revalorization of amour-propre by thinkers such as D'Holbach, Diderot, Voltaire, and Condillac to both earlier and contemporaneous attacks on all forms of self-interest, such as those leveled by Pascal, Fénelon, Racine, and Rousseau. We conclude with Kant and Benjamin Constant.

2006-2007 Winter

27000 Historicizing Desire

(=CLCV 27706,EALC 27410,GNDR 28001)

Course meets the critical/intellectual methods course requirement for students majoring in Comparative Literature. This course examines conceptions of desire in ancient China and ancient Greece through an array of early philosophical, literary, historical, legal, and medical texts (e.g., Sima Qian, Mencius, Book of Songs, Plato, Sappho). We attempt not only to bring out the cultural specificities of ancient erotic experience but also to make visible the historical and geopolitical contingencies of our own methods of reading. We explore the broader cultural background of the two ancient periods, and engage with theoretical debates on the history of sexuality, feminist and queer studies, and East/West studies.

2006-2007 Winter

28300 European Romanticism

(=GRMN 28300)

PQ: Reading knowledge of German. This course examines the philosophical foundations of Early German Romanticism and the major writers belonging to that period (i.e., F. Schlegel, Wackenroder, Tieck, Novalis, Bonaventura, Eichendorff ). Simultaneously, we consider the manner in which the Frhromantiker affected the English and French versions of Romanticism.

2006-2007 Winter

29600 The Literature of the Fantastic

(=ENGL 28903/48904,ISHU 29301,RUSS 26702/36702)

PQ: Open to graduates and undergraduates. This course will include texts by Russian and English authors, including Pushkin, Gogol, Bulgakov, Nabokov, Poe, H.G. Wells, and Oscar Wilde. Theoretical positions will be examined based on texts by Tzevtan Todorov, Jackson, Traill, Lachmann. All text will be in English.

2006-2007 Winter

30102 Seminar: Literary Criticism from Plato to Burke

(=ENGL 52502)

PQ: Consent of instructor, outside students will be accepted, with the class size limited to 15 students, as long as the majority of 32students are ComLit 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 . The course will take as its particular focus the critical treatment of epic in the following: Plato, Aristotle, Longinus, Horace, Montaigne, Sidney, Le Bossu, St. Evremond, Dryden, Addison, Voltaire, and Burke. The course will also examine some twentieth-century approaches to epic (e.g., Auerbach, Curtius, Frye) 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.

2006-2007 Autumn

30201 Seminar: Theories of the Novel

(=ENGL 57102)

PQ: Consent of instructor, outside students will be accepted, with the class size limited to 15 students, as long as the majority of students are ComLit Grad students and PhD students in English Language and Literature. Fulfills the core course requirement for CompLit students. This course introduces graduate students 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? Readings include Sterne, Tristram Shandy; Austen, Emma; Joyce, Portrait of the Artist as a Yong Man; critics covered include Lukacs, Bakhtin, Watt, Jameson, and others.

2006-2007 Winter

20600/30600 History and Theory of Drama II

(=ENGL 13900/31100,ISHU 24300/34300)

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: Molire, 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.

2006-2007 Winter

22000/32000 The Manifesto, Revolution, and Modernity

(=SLAV 21800/31800)

As a genre the manifesto provides a unique opportunity for studying the political and aesthetic movements of modernity. It thrives on a culture of crisis by articulating demands, galvanizing public opinion, and dividing the body politic. This class will study the politics, poetics, and geography of the manifesto form between 1870 and 1930. Readings will include symbolist, futurist, dada, and surrealist manifestoes. Additional texts by Karl Marx, Walter Benjamin, Carl Schmitt, Leon Trotsky, Hugo Ball, Andre Breton, Kazimir Malevich, Wyndham Lewis, Sergei Eisenstein, Sergei Tretiakov. Films by Rene Clair, Eisenstein, Dziga Vertov, Luis Bunuel.

2006-2007 Spring

22101/32101 Nineteenth Century Literature of the Balkans

(=SOSL 26600/36600)

In this course, we will look at the works of the major nineteenth century writers and poets from the Balkans. We will examine how their works grapple with the issues of national identity, with the emergence of their nations from the Austro-Hungarian and Ottoman Empires, and with their countries? place in the Balkans and in Europe. We will map our work on two major axes: syntagmatic difference-how each work develops its own rules of reading-and paradigmatic similarity-how working through the difference, one uncovers systematic correlations in the ways the texts go about structuring their universe. We will pay attention to the historical context and will investigate the main philosophical categories through which these works make sense of the world. It is the hope of the instructor that by the end of the course, these older foreign texts will no longer seem impenetrable and strange because we will have learnt to understand the power and beauty with which these texts speak.

2006-2007 Spring

22400/32400 History of International Cinema I: Silent Era

(=ARTH 28500/38500,ARTV 26500,CMST 28500/48500,ENGL 29300/47800,MAPH 33600)

This is the first part of a two-quarter course. The two parts may be taken individually, but taking them in sequence is helpful . The aim of this course is to introduce what was singular about the art and craft of silent film. Its general outline is chronological. We also discuss main national schools and international trends of filmmaking.

2006-2007 Winter

22500/32500 History of International Cinema II: Sound Era to 1960

(=ARTH 28600/38600,ARTV 26600,CMST 28600/48600,ENGL 29600/48900,MAPH 33700)

PQ: Prior or current registration in CMST 10100 required; CMLT 22400/32400 strongly recommended. The center of this course is film style, from the classical scene breakdown to the introduction of deep focus, stylistic experimentation, and technical innovation (sound, wide screen, location shooting). The development of a film culture is also discussed. Texts include Thompson and Bordwell's Film History, An Introduction; and works by Bazin, Belton, Sitney, and Godard. Screenings include films by Hitchcock, Welles, Rossellini, Bresson, Ozu, Antonioni, and Renoir.

2006-2007 Spring

35200 Phaedra and Hippolytus: Euripides, Seneca, Racine

(=FREN 35960,SCTH 35960)

PQ: Knowledge of ancient Greek, Latin, or French, or permission of the instructor. French students work must be in French, including the final paper, for French credit. A close comparative reading of Euripides' Hippolytus, Seneca's Phaedra, and Racine's Phedre. There will be one seminar meeting each week for the whole class and one additional session to discuss the texts in the original language with those students who can read it. This course is a two-quarter course and will meet for the first five weeks of the winter term and the last five weeks of the spring term. There will be one grade report at the end of spring quarter. Students are mandated to register for both quarters.

2006-2007 Spring

35200 Phaedra and Hippolytus: Euripides, Seneca, Racine

(=FREN 35960,SCTH 35960.)

PQ: Knowledge of ancient Greek, Latin, or French, or permission of the instructor. French students work must be in French, including the final paper, for French credit. A close comparative reading of Euripides' Hippolytus, Seneca's Phaedra, and Racine's Phedre. There will be one seminar meeting each week for the whole class and one additional session to discuss the texts in the original language with those students who can read it. This course is a two-quarter course and will meet for the first five weeks of the winter term and the last five weeks of the spring term. There will be one grade report at the end of spring quarter. Students are mandated to register for both quarters.

2006-2007 Winter

26800/36800 Ekphrasis on Stage: From Cervantes to Caldern

(=SPAN 24301/34301)

During the early modern age, writing had a strong visual component. Poets and playwrights utilized the sense of sight since it was the highest of the Platonic senses and a mnemonic key to lead spectators to remember vividly what they had read or heard, long before spectacle plays were in fashion. One important technique for visualization was ekphrasis, the description of an art work within a text. For this purpose, playwrights often turned to the mythological canvases of the Italian Renaissance along with the portraits of great rulers and images of battle. Thus, early modern theater could rely on ekphrasis to help the audience visualize a heroic figure, the mysteries love, or an epic conflict. And, noblewomen, in order to acquire agency, would take on the guise of a goddess as portrayed in Italian canvases. Their rule would be most often portrayed in comic plays. We will read plays by Cervantes, Lope de Vega, Tirso de Molina and Caldern as well as ancient, early modern French and Italian plays. Numerous Italian Renaissance paintings will be discussed.

2006-2007 Winter

36900 Non-Discursive Representation from Goethe to Wittgenstein - I

(=GRMN 36500,PHIL 50500,SCTH 50500)

Must be taken in sequence. This seminar is a regular graduate seminar held in conjunction with a Sawyer Seminar sponsored by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. The course will examine philosophical and aesthetic issues associated with the problem of non-discursive representation in both major texts of the philosophical and literary tradition running, roughly speaking, from Kant to the present. Relevant works by contemporary philosophers and critics will also be discussed. The seminar is linked to two conferences on the topic and will include individual visits to the seminar by conference participants.

2006-2007 Autumn

37000 Non-Discursive Representation from Goethe to Wittgenstein - II

(=GRMN 36600,PHIL 50501)

Must be taken in sequence. This seminar is a regular graduate seminar held in conjunction with a Sawyer Seminar sponsored by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. The course will examine philosophical and aesthetic issues associated with the problem of non-discursive representation in both major texts of the philosophical and literary tradition running, roughly speaking, from Kant to the present. Relevant works by contemporary philosophers and critics will also be discussed. The seminar is linked to two conferences on the topic and will include individual visits to the seminar by conference participants.

2006-2007 Winter

27900/37900 Lucretius and Karl Marx

(=ANST 25606,CLAS 35606,CLCV 25606,FNDL 24211)

Lucretius was a follower of Epicurus, whom Marx called the greatest representative of Greek enlightenment. In his poem On the Nature of Things, Lucretius seeks to convert his fellow Romans to an Epicurean way of life. He explains in detail what the world is made of (atoms) and that there is no reason to fear the gods or death. Marx wrote his doctoral dissertation on Epicurus and Lucretius. He was especially enthusiastic about the idea, which was developed by Lucretius, that humans are free to shape their own lives.

2006-2007 Autumn

38000 Subject/Subjectivity

(=RLIT 40100,FREN 33801)

This course will examine postmodern notions of the subject, subjectivity, and the gendering of these. Readings will include texts by Butler, Foucault, Derrida, C. Taylor, Kristeva, Lacan, Levinas, Certeau and Irigary. We will also be reading from a variety of other contemporary theorists. Open to graduate students only. Requirements include one seminar paper and presentation.

2006-2007 Spring

28200/38200 Spiritual Exercises and Moral Perfectionism

(=DVPR 31202. PHIL 21202/31202,RLST 23501)

A number of philosophers have recently proposed a new way of approaching ethics (and of reconceiving the task of philosophy) that focuses on exercises of self-transformation and ideals of moral perfection (sometimes conceived of as forms of wisdom). A distinctive set of notions, such as spiritual exercises, practices of the self, ways of life, the aesthetics of existence, the care of the self, conversion, and moral exemplarity, is meant to displace the picture of morality as primarily a code of good conduct. We shall study three contemporary authors who are central to reviving this way of thinking about ethical practice - Pierre Hadot, Michel Foucault, and Stanley Cavell. Their work will be read against the background of some classic texts in the history of philosophy in an attempt to uncover the historical tradition and the contemporary significance of this conception of the moral life.

2006-2007 Autumn

38700 On Creaturely Life: Literature, Philosophy, and Theology

(=GRMN 37500)

This course will address the concept of creaturely life as a dimension that places the human in intimate proximity to the animal without collapsing the human-animal distinction. Readings will include texts by Rilke, Kafka, Benjamin, Heidegger, Agamben, Coetzee, Sebald, Cixous, Derrida.

2006-2007 Winter

29000/39000 Poetic Cinema

(=CMST 25501/35501,ISHU 29002,RLIT 39000,RLST 28401,RUSS 29001/39001)

Films are frequently denoted as poetic or lyrical in a vague sort of way. It has been applied equally to religious cinema and to the experimental avant-garde. Our task will be to interrogate this concept and to try to define what it actually is denoting. Films and critical texts will mainly be drawn from Soviet and French cinema of the 1920s-1930s and 1960s-1990s. Directors include Dovzhenko, Renoir, Cocteau, Resnais, Maya Deren, Tarkovsky, Pasolini, Jarman, and Sokurov. In addition to sampling these directors? own writings, we shall examine theories of poetic cinema by major critics from the Russian formalists to Andre Bazin beyond.

2006-2007 Winter

29200/39200 Extremist Poetry: Paul Celan and Sylvia Plath

(=ENGL 27802/47802,GRMN 29206/39206)

PQ: Reading knowledge of German is required. This course will focus largely on the relation of lyric poetry to extreme historical experience, to the Shoah in particular. We will focus on Celan's poems for seven weeks, and then on Plath's late work for three weeks.

2006-2007 Spring

29400/39400 Classic Yiddish Fiction: Scholem-Aleichem and the Diasporic Imagination

(=GRMN 27700/37700,YDDH 25500/35500)

The seminar will examine the Yiddish writer Scholem-Aleichem's work as a prime example of the diasporic imagination in modern Jewish culture. The writer's greatest achievement was his monologues, oral narrative performances such as Tevye the Dairyman, the Railroad Stories and Menakhem Mendel. These key texts will be discussed in the context of Russian Jewry's crisis and transformation at the turn of the twentieth century. Scholem-Aleichem's political development will be traced in his relationship to the two dominant ideologies in Jewish Eastern Europe prior to World War I: Socialism and Zionism. Finally, Scholem-Aleichem's encounter with America during his visit in 1905-1906 and his immigration in 1914 will be discussed in connection with his play writing for the Yiddish stage and cinema. The course will delineate Scholem-Aleichem's unique literary universe and style, the pivotal expression of classic Yiddish fiction that remains one of the most original expressions of the diasporic imagination in modern Jewish culture. No prior knowledge of Yiddish is required. All readings will be in English. Students wanting to study the primary material in the original languages (Yiddish, Hebrew and Russian) are encouraged to do so.

2006-2007 Autumn

29500/39500 Le rgne des passions dans la littrature du XVIIe sicle

(=FREN 24301/34301)

A study of the vision of human passions, as reflected in 17th-century literature. We will discuss influential passages from Plato's Republic, Aristotle's Nicomachean Ethics, and Pascal's Pensées, a selection of narratives from L'Astre by Honor d'Urf, as well as The Ill-advised curiosity by Cervantes, The Princess of Clves by Mme de La Fayette, King Lear by Shakespeare, Rodogune by Corneille and Britannucus by Racine. The course will be taught in French and the French texts will be read in the original language.

2006-2007 Winter

39600 The Literature of the Fantastic

(=ENGL 28903/48904,ISHU 29301,RUSS 26702/36702)

PQ: Open to graduates and undergraduates. This course will include texts by Russian and English authors, including Pushkin, Gogol, Bulgakov, Nabokov, Poe, H.G. Wells, and Oscar Wilde. Theoretical positions will be examined based on texts by Tzevtan Todorov, Jackson, Traill, Lachmann. All text will be in English.

2006-2007 Winter

29800/39800 Jewish American Literature after 1945

(=ENGL 25004/45002,GRMN 27800/37800,YDDH 27800/37800)

No prior knowledge of Yiddish is required. All texts will be available in English. Students with reading proficiency in Yiddish are encouraged to read the Yiddish texts in the original. The course will develop a multilingual model for the study of American literature by examining Yiddish and English literature by Jewish writers in America after 1945. Despite the fact that Jewish literature in America exists in several languages, the study of Jewish American literature is overwhelmingly defined by an English-only approach. The main goal of the course is to expand the conception of the field of Jewish American literature from English-only to English-plus. In discussing novels and short stories by bilingual writers such as I.B.Singer and Scholem Asch, we will discuss the permeable borders that existed between American literature in Yiddish and English after 1945. The course will address how the Yiddish literary landscape influenced the resurgence of Jewish American literature in the 1950s and 1960s as represented by the works of Saul Bellow, Philip Roth, Cynthia Ozick and Bernard Malamud. We will compare literature of the Holocaust by John Hersey, Chaim Grade and I.B.Singer with more recent works in the genre. Finally, we will examine how Dara Horn's In the Image (2002) and Pearl Abraham's The Seventh Beggar (2005) have renewed the engagement with the Yiddish literary tradition among a young generation of Jewish American writers. Primary texts: I.B.Singer, The Shadows on the Hudson (1957-1958); Chaim Grade, My Quarrel With Hersh Rasayner (1952); Sholem Ash, East River (1946); John Hersey, The Wall (1950); Saul Bellow, Mr. Sammler's Planet (1971) and Something to Remember Me By (1990); Cynthia Ozick, Envy: or, Yiddish in America (1969) and The Shawl (1983); Philip Roth, The Ghost Writer (1978); Jonathan Safran Foer, Everything is Illuminated (2000); Pearl Abraham, The Seventh Beggar (2005); Dara Horn, In the Image (2002).

2006-2007 Winter

42500 Ancient Multiculturalism and Its Discontents

(=CLAS 42500,EALC 42200)

This seminar examines the implications of modern theories of multiculturalism and world systems for the study of classical literatures. It asks students to historically and theoretically explore the relation of classical literatures and ancient cultures to area studies, national and comparative literature departments, as well as to disciplines such as anthropology, linguistics and archaeology. How does scholarship on ancient cosmopolitanism, tracing ever more extensive networks of material and linguistic exchange, compel us both to reread ancient texts and to rethink their relation to the present? Who determines to whom a text or cultural artifact belongs? The class is primarily organized around theoretical readings relating to a set of problems (e.g. notions of cultural property, translation, writing systems, race, Silk Road Studies), but will also include readings of classical texts (primarily Chinese and Greek) available in translation. Authors will include Appiah, Bernal, Derrida, Engels, Frank, Kuper, Plato, Sima Qian, Spivak.

2006-2007 Spring

47900 Intertextuality and Memory Aspect

(=RUSS 47800)

PQ: Open to graduate students only. This course will include works by Andrei Bely, Osip Mandelstam, Anna Akhmatova, and Nabokov. Theoretical sources on intertextuality will include Mikhail Bakhtin, Julia Kristeva, Riffaterre, and Lotman.

2006-2007 Winter

48000 Modern European Poetics

(=ENGL 47210)

PQ: Reading knowledge of one modern European language is required. This course, intended for M.A. and Ph.D. students, focuses on theories of poetry proposed by European writers of the 20th century. We will read essays by Mallarme, Valery, Benn, Eliot, Pound, Breton, Ponge, Heidegger, Celan, Bonnefoy, Oulipo writers, Kristeva, and others. Students will give one or two oral reports and write one essay on a poet of their choosing.

2006-2007 Autumn

50900 Space, Place, and Landscape

(=ARTH 48900,CMST 69200,ENGL 60301)

This seminar will analyze the concepts of space, place, and landscape across the media (painting, photography, cinema, sculpture, architecture, and garden design, as well as poetic and literary renderings of setting, and virtual media-scapes). Key theoretical readings from a variety of disciplines, including geography, art history, literature, and philosophy will be included: Foucault's Of Other Spaces, Michel de Certeau's concept of heterotopia; Heidegger's Art and Space; Gaston Bachelard's The Poetics of Space; Henri Lefebvre's Production of Space; David Harvey's Geography of Difference; Raymond Williams's The Country and the City; Mitchell, Landscape and Power. Topics for discussion will include the concept of the picturesque and the rise of landscape painting in Europe; the landscape garden; place, memory, and identity; sacred sites and holy lands; regional, global, and national landscapes; embodiment and the gendering of space; the genius of place; literary and textual space. Course requirements: 2 oral presentations: one on a place (or representation of a place); the other on a critical or theoretical text. Final paper. Consent of Instructor Required: Submit a statement of your proposed seminar project to wjtm@uchicago.edu by 9/22/06 indicating what specific aspect of space, place, and landscape you would like to explore, and what particular theoretical resources and archives you intend to develop. Statements should be one page single-spaced, and be accompanied by a short list of the texts you regard as most crucial to your research. Indicate what department and what level you are in.

2006-2007 Autumn

22701 Beyond Cinema Novo: New Cinema from Brazil, Portugal and Lusophone Africa

(=PORT 21701)

We will explore new tendencies in the cinema of Portugal, Brazil and Portuguese-speaking African countries such as Mozambique, Angola and Guinea-Bissau. Under analysis will be recent productions in a variety of formats and genres such as fiction and documentary, publicity, and TV series. We will assess the contributions of these cinematic objects to contemporary socio-political discourse focusing both on the Portuguese-speaking world and beyond. Course conducted in English.

2007-2008 Autumn

23101 Twentieth Century Literature from the Balkans

(=SOSL 26500/36500)

In this course, we will examine the works of major writers from former Yugoslavia, Bulgaria, Albania, Rumania, Greece, and Turkey from the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. We will examine how their works grapple with the issues of national identity and their countries' place in the Balkans and in Europe, with the legacies of the Austro-Hungarian and the Ottoman Empires, with socialism and its demise, with emigration, as well as simply with the modern experience of being. We will compare the conceptual and mythic categories through which these works make sense of the world and argue for and against considering such categories constitutive of an overall Balkan sensibility. The readings will include works by Orhan Pamuk, Ivo Andri, Norman Manea, Mesa Selimovi, Danilo Kis, Miroslav Krlea, Ismail Kadare and others.

2007-2008 Autumn

23201 Returning the Gaze: The Balkans and Western Europe

(=SOSL 27200/37200)

This course will investigate 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 will focus on the problems of Orientalism, Balkanism and nesting orientalisms, as well as on self-mythologization and self-exoticization. We will also think about differing models of masculinity, and of the figure of the gypsy as a metaphor for the national self in relation to the West. The course will conclude by considering the role that the imperative to belong to Western Europe played in the Yugoslavian wars of the 1990s.

2007-2008 Autumn

25001 Foucault and the History of Sexuality

(=GNDR 23100,HIPS 24300,PHIL 24800)

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.

2007-2008 Autumn

25201 Contemporary Hebrew Poetry

(=JWSC 21800,NEHC 20463)

This course examines the works (in the original) of major contemporary Hebrew poets such as Yehuda Amichai, Nathan Zach, David Avidan, Dalia Rabikovitch,Yona Wollach, Maya Bejerano, and Yitzhak Laor. These works will be read against the background of the poetry of previous literary generations of writers such as H.N Bialik, Avraham Shlonsky, Natan Alterman and Shaul Tchernihovsky, in an attempt to uncover changes in style, themes and aesthetic. Through close reading of the poems, the course traces the unique style and aesthetic of each poet, and aims at presenting a wide picture of contemporary Hebrew poetry.

2007-2008 Autumn

25800 The Representation of Jesus in Modern Jewish Literature

(=JWSC 24800,NEHC 20457,RLST 26601)

This course examines the Jewish literary world's relation to the figure of Jesus from the end of the nineteenth century to the present. We study the transformations of Jesus through close readings of major works, both prose fiction and poetry, by Yiddish and Hebrew writers (e.g., Uri Zvi Greenberg, H. Leivick, Jacob Glatstein, S. Y. Agnon, Avraham Shlonsky, Natan Bistritzki, A. A. Kabak, Haim Hazaz, Zalman Shneior, Yigal Mosenzon, Avot Yeshurun, Nathan Zach, Yona Wallach, Yoel Hoffmann). Classes conducted in English, but students with knowledge of Hebrew are encouraged to read texts in the original.

2007-2008 Autumn

28700 Major Works of Modernism

(=GRMN 29000)

This course is centered on several canonical works of classical modernism: Hugo von Hofmannsthal's Ein Brief ; Robert Walser's Jakob von Gunten ; Thomas Mann's Tod in Venedig ; Franz Kafka's Die Verwandlung ; Arthur Schnitzler's Frulein Else ; Bertolt Brecht's Mutter Courage und ihre Kinder ; poetry by Stefan George, Hofmannsthal, Gottfried Benn, Rainer Maria Rilke, and Georg Trakl; essays by Georg Simmel, Walter Benjamin, and Robert Musil. On the basis of the works studied we shall endeavor to develop a concept of modernism sufficiently capacious to embrace radically opposed literary and cultural agendas. Readings and discussion in German.

2007-2008 Autumn

21401 Latino/a Intellectual Thought

(=ENGL 22804,GNDR 22401,LACS 22804,SPAN 22801)

This course traces the history of Latina/o intellectual work that helped shape contemporary Latina/o cultural studies. Our focus is on how Chicanas/os and Puerto Ricans have theorized the history, society, and culture of Latinas/os in the United States. Themes include folklore and anthropology, cultural nationalism, postcolonialism, literary and cultural studies, community activism, feminism, sexuality, and the emergence of a pan-Latino culture. Throughout, we pay attention to the convergences and divergences of Chicana/o and Puerto Rican studies, especially as contemporary practitioners have encouraged us to (re)think Latina/o studies in a comparative framework.

2007-2008 Spring

21601 Empire and Intimacy: Race and Sexual Fantasy in European Literature

(=ENGL 18105,GNDR 21603,ISHU 21601)

This course meets the critical/intellectual methods course requirement for students who are majoring in Comparative Literature. This course critically examines European fascination with non-Western peoples, their bodies and sexual practices from the late Renaissance to the 20th century. Along with select incursions into visual art and film, the class will focus on English and French literature that imagines cross-cultural contact in its most shocking form: interracial sexuality. We will try to assess the political questions - race fetishism, the ethics of desire, economic exploitation, to name but a few - these representations provoke. In addition to this literary output, we will examine European proto-anthropology that detailed the sexual aberrations of subaltern peoples. We will consider the role both types of discourses had in stimulating interest in imperial exploration and how the logic of territorial capture dovetailed with the masculinist metaphor of sexual conquest. We will take recent contributions by postcolonial, feminist, queer and Marxist critics as a starting point for discussion and for formulating our own views on this problematic. All works will be available in English, but students with a reading knowledge of French will be encouraged to read French works in the original. Literature to be read includes works by Shakespeare, Behn, Diderot, Byron, C. Bront, Haggard, Gide and Forster.

2007-2008 Spring

24601 The Portrait of the President

(=ENGL 25916)

This course enquires into the work of power that is done by the portrait of the powerful. We will interrogate the portraiture of the President of the United States (and of those who would be President) not simply for its systems of meaning, its legibility, nor only in the spirit of diagnostic criticism, but most crucially for the portraiture's efficacy. This last is the most treacherous question of all for image studies, and it is the one we will articulate and pursue: What is it that portraits, in and of themselves, are able to do? What is the power of the portrait of the President? We will thus consider what we mean by power and by representation, and how the portrait tradition effects both. Louis Marin's The Portrait of the King will offer us a bundle of rich theoretical premises and analytical models. Other readings will include portrait theory, literature on US presidential portraiture, and a minor critical tradition linking the portrait of the monarchic bust to the portrait of the political ruler (Foucault on coins and caricatures; Barthes on election posters; Fresnault-Deruelle on French presidential portraiture). We will focus on four contemporary genres of representation of the President and of the presidential: money; election posters; official presidential portraits; and television talking heads. All students will be enrolled in the two hour Monday class, in addition to which they will choose between one of two meeting times on Wednesdays. Students wishing to read in English only will need to attend the 9:30-10:30 session on Wednesdays. Students who are literate in French and who wish to take the course with a French language component will need to attend the 10:30-11:30 session on Wednesdays, where they will read the key set text in the French original (Louis Marin's Le Portrait du roi), along with a selection of other set texts in French (e.g. Barthes, Foucault). The choice of session on Wednesdays is workload neutral.

2007-2008 Spring

26001 Realism and Anti-Realism in Post-Holocaust Hebrew Literature

(=JWSC 21900 NEHC 20467)

This course seeks to trace the narrative dynamics and literary means of Post-Holocaust Hebrew Literature. The course focuses on works that break with the conventions of realism, and study the specific forms and means by which each work does so. In the center of the discussion will stand questions such as: what are the constraints of the literary discourse on the Holocaust, what is the role of anti-realist depiction of the Holocaust, and in what ways the fantastic threatens the collective memory. We will read works by writers such as: S.Y Agnon, Aharon Appelfeld, David Grossman, Itamar Levi, Yoel Hoffmann and Michal Govrin. Classes will be conducted in English, but students with knowledge of Hebrew are encouraged to read texts in the original.

2007-2008 Spring

28600 Literature and Madness

(=GRMN 26500)

This course explores the curious proximity between literature and the discourse on madness in the modern era. Discussion topics include definitions of insanity and their evolution across time, insane or deviant characters and their function in drama and fiction, the topos of the poet as madman, and the poetics of madness. Authors discussed may include Cervantes, Shakespeare, Goethe, Tieck, Hoffmann, Bchner, Poe, Gogol, James, Hauptmann, Dblin, Pirandello, Schnitzler, Kant, Pinel, Reil, Lombroso, Schreber, and Freud.

2007-2008 Spring

29001 Silk Road Fictions

(=EALC 27450,ENGL 16181)

This course meets the critical/intellectual methods course requirement for students who are majoring in Comparative Literature. The Silk Road is a modern idealization of a pre-modern crossing of peoples, ideas, and cultural traditions across a Eurasian continent. The array of texts that falls under this rubric has historically grown from a few ancient Greek and Chinese narratives to embrace any number of works that exemplify or narrate cross-cultural encounters between a notional East and West. This course introduces students to some basic problems in cross-cultural comparative reading through the example of the Silk Road. We will look closely at a selection of Silk Road fictions and their relation to multiple literary or aesthetic traditions, and consider the ways in which writers have used, translated, and even forged ancient manuscripts in constructing cross-cultural history. We will also consider theories of world literature, cosmopolitanism, and bilingual and bicultural texts. Primary readings will include The Monkey and Monk (from the 16th century epic Chinese novel The Journey to the West ), the Greek Alexander Romance , Jamyang Norbu's The Mandala of Sherlock Holmes , and David Henry Hwang's M. Butterfly . Knowledge of classical Greek or Chinese is helpful but not required.

2007-2008 Spring

21800 Fantasy and Science Fiction

(=ENGL 20900)

This course concentrates on works of the classic period (from the 1930s to the 1960s). It does, however, begin with representative authors from the nineteenth century (e.g., Jules Verne, H. Rider Haggard), as well as some works from the early twentieth century (e.g., David Lindsay's A Voyage to Arcturus , H. P. Lovecraft's Mountains of Madness ). Worth special attention are authors (e.g., C. S. Lewis and Ursula LeGuin) who worked in both genres at a time when they were often contrasted. The two major texts discussed include one from each genre (i.e., Tolkien's Lord of the Rings , Herbert's Dune ). Most texts come from the Anglo-American tradition, with some significant exceptions (e.g., short works by Kafka and Borges).

2007-2008 Winter

24800 Fiction and Freedom

(=GRMN 25900)

This course examines a series of major twentieth-century works of fiction that explore the nature of human freedom. Our concern is not only to delineate the theme of freedom but also to attempt to understand the link between that theme and the fictional form the author chooses. A further concern is the position of the reader as it is figured in the texts examined. Authors considered include Herman Melville, Franz Kafka, Samuel Beckett, T. S. Eliot, Maurice Blanchot, and Imre Kertsz.

2007-2008 Winter

30103 Seminar: Modern European Poetics

(=ENGL 47210)

PQ: Reading knowledge of one modern European language is required; 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, intended for M.A. and Ph.D. students, focuses on theories of poetry proposed by European writers of the 20th century. We will read essays by Mallarme, Valery, Benn, Eliot, Pound, Breton, Ponge, Heidegger, Celan, Bonnefoy, Oulipo writers, Kristeva, and others. Students will give one or two oral reports and write one essay on a poet of their choosing.

2007-2008 Autumn

30202 Seminar: Mimesis

(=CLAS 39200,EALC 30100)

Consent of instructor, outside students will be accepted, with the class size limited to 15 students, as long as the majority of students are CompLit Grad students and PhD students in East Asian Language and Civilization and Classics. Fulfills the core course requirement for CompLit students. This course will introduce the concept of mimesis, from early formulations by Plato and Aristotle through reformulations in recent literary theory, especially in relation to non-western aesthetic traditions. Other readings will include Auerbach, Derrida, Saussy, and Taussig. Students are encouraged to write final papers on their own research projects while engaging with issues discussed through the course.

2007-2008 Winter

31600 Marxism Modern Culture

(=ENGL 32300)

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.

2007-2008 Spring

22500/32500 History of International Cinema II: Sound Era to 1960

(=ARTH 28600/38600,ARTV 26600,CMST 28600/48600,ENGL 29600/48900,MAPH 33700)

PQ: Prior or current registration in CMST 10100 required; CMLT 22400/32400 strongly recommended. The center of this course is film style, from the classical scene breakdown to the introduction of deep focus, stylistic experimentation, and technical innovation (sound, wide screen, location shooting). The development of a film culture is also discussed. Texts include Thompson and Bordwell's Film History, An Introduction; and works by Bazin, Belton, Sitney, and Godard. Screenings include films by Hitchcock, Welles, Rossellini, Bresson, Ozu, Antonioni, and Renoir.

2007-2008 Winter

23001/33001 Sex and Gender in Russian Culture, 1830-Present

(=RUSS 24402/34402)

This course traces the history of Russian debates about gender and sexuality from the 19th through the 21st centuries as registered in literary, visual, political, and material culture. Course topics include: the emergence of Russian women as writers in the 1830s; gender roles and radical politics in the 1860s and 1870s; decadent art and homoeroticism in the 1890s and 1900s; utopian social goals and revolutionary sexualities in the 1920s; shifting Soviet and post-Soviet constructions of gender and sexuality; Russian feminisms and nascent queer movements. Primary texts will include fiction, memoir, poetry, drama, political manifestos, fashion design, posters, paintings, popular song, and cinema. Short secondary readings will provide both theoretical and historical contexts. Discussions will be conducted in English. All texts will be available in both English and Russian.

2007-2008 Autumn

33101 Twentieth Century Literature from the Balkans

(=SOSL 26500/36500)

In this course, we will examine the works of major writers from former Yugoslavia, Bulgaria, Albania, Rumania, Greece, and Turkey from the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. We will examine how their works grapple with the issues of national identity and their countries' place in the Balkans and in Europe, with the legacies of the Austro-Hungarian and the Ottoman Empires, with socialism and its demise, with emigration, as well as simply with the modern experience of being. We will compare the conceptual and mythic categories through which these works make sense of the world and argue for and against considering such categories constitutive of an overall Balkan sensibility. The readings will include works by Orhan Pamuk, Ivo Andri, Norman Manea, Mesa Selimovi, Danilo Kis, Miroslav Krle a, Ismail Kadare and others.

2007-2008 Autumn

23401/33401 The Burden of History: A Nation and Its Lost Paradise

(=SOSL 27300/37300)

We will look at the narrative of loss and redemption through which Balkan countries retell the Ottoman past. With the help of Freud‚s analysis of masochistic desire and Zizek's theory of the subject as constituted by trauma, we will contemplate the national fixation on the trauma of loss and the dynamic between victimhood and sublimity. The figure of the Janissary will highlight the significance of the other in the definition of the self. Some possible texts are Petar Njego'‚ Mountain Wreath , Ismail Kadare's The Castle , and Anton Donchev's Time of Parting.

2007-2008 Winter

34001 Things Poets Say

(=PORT 36501,SCTH 30640)

Do poets know what they say? Do they know what they do? Can we talk about 'poets', in any general intelligible sense? Attempting to answer these questions, we will use as a basic corpus for seminar discussion seven interviews well-known poets gave to The Paris Review since 1953 (which will be made available in the first session). We will then discuss a classic statement of the theory according to which poets don't know what they say or do: Plato's Ion .

2007-2008 Spring

25101/35101 History, Philosophy and the Politics of Psychoanalysis

(=PHIL 25401/35401)

A reading of some central texts of Freud (both early and late) in the context of a study of the role of psychoanalysis in contemporary European philosophy. Other authors to be read may include Foucault, Deleuze and Guatteri, Marcuse, and Derrida.

2007-2008 Winter

36500 Renaissance Romance

(=ENGL 36302,RLIT 52100)

Selections from the following trio of texts are studied: Ovid's Metamorphoses (as the recognized classical model), Boiardo's Orlando innamorato (which set the norms for Renaissance romance), and Spenser's Faerie Queene .

2007-2008 Winter

28001/38001 Aeneids in Translation

(=CLAS 37200,CLCV 27200,FNDL 26611)

We confront Virgil's Aeneid in translation as a poem, as an artifact and representation of Greco-Roman culture, as a response to a millennial oral (Homeric) poetic tradition and a particular historical (Augustan) moment, as a reflection of ancient thought rich with significance for contemporary questions about human life, and as a central piece of world literature. Readings include comparative study of English poetic translations ranging from early modernity (Caxton, Douglas, Phayer, Surrey, and Dryden) to the twentieth century (Taylor, Lewis, Jackson Knight, Mandelbaum, and Fitzgerald) and beyond (Lombardo and Fagles). Students who are majoring in Comparative Literature compare versions of a book of the Aeneid in at least two languages.

2007-2008 Spring

28101/38101 Cervantes's Don Quijote

(=FNDL 21211,RLLT 34202,SPAN 24202)

This course is a close reading of Cervantes's Don Quijote that 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 Hellenistic romances to the spectacular vigor of the books of knight errants and the French pastoral and heroic romances. On the other hand, Don Quijote exhibits a desire for Italy through the utilization of Renaissance art. Beneath the dusty roads of La Mancha and within Don Quijote's chivalric fantasies, students come to appreciate glimpses of images with Italian designs. Classes conducted in English; Spanish majors do all work in Spanish.

2007-2008 Winter

38600 Aesthetics of French Classicism

(= ARTH 48301,FREN 37000)

Though aesthetic philosophy first developed as an autonomous field in the mid-eighteenth century, it has important roots in earlier eighteenth- and seventeenth-century debates concerning literature and the arts. In the wake of Cartesian rationalism, could reasoned method be reconciled with non-rational creativity, or decorous order with the unruly sublime? Just what kind of truth was revealed by poetry or painting? Readings will include Boileau, Racine, Bouhours, Perrault, Du Bos, Montesquieu, Voltaire and Diderot, as well as the French reception of British writings on the subject by Pope and Addison.

2007-2008 Spring

28701/38701 Novels of Self-Discovery: Stendhal, Flaubert, and Fontane

(=CMLT 28701. FREN 26400/36400)

PQ: Third- or fourth-year standing and consent of instructor. This course is a study of Stendhal's The Charterhouse of Parma, Flaubert's Madame Bovary, and Fontane's Effi Briest that emphasizes the search for self-identity and the erratic pursuit of happiness. Classes conducted in English. Students who are majoring or minoring in French read the French texts in the original and participate in a weekly French discussion group.

2007-2008 Spring

28801/38801 The Individual, Form, and the Novel

(=ENGL 28906/48906,ISHU 28103,SLAV 25100/35100)

PQ: Advanced standing. This course is an exploration and comparison of several different strategies used by European novelists to represent an autonomous individual, all of which give rise to specific novelistic forms (e.g., autobiography, Bildungsroman , novel of manners, psychological novel). The primary bibliography for this course includes works by Rousseau, Goethe, Stendhal, and Tolstoy. We also read critical works by Georg Lukacs, Franco Moretti, Clement Lugowski, Mikhail Bakhtin, Lidia Ginzburg, and Alex Woloch. Texts in English and the original; discussion and papers in English.

2007-2008 Winter

39002 Silk Road Narratives

(=EALC 37451,ENGL 36182)

This graduate seminar introduces students to problems in cross-cultural comparative reading through the example of the Silk Road. We will explore ways of reading classic literary texts associated with the Silk Road (e.g. the Greek Alexander Romance , the epic Chinese novel The Journey to the West ), particularly in their relation to multiple literary or aesthetic traditions. We will also address the modern conception of the ancient Silk Road, both as a cosmopolitan ideal spanning East and West and in its relation to the nineteenth century politics of Central Asia, through historical and theoretical debates on world systems, world literature, philology, and translation. Other primary readings will draw from Sima Qian, Herodotus, Marco Polo, Jamyang Norbu. Knowledge of classical Chinese or Greek is recommended but not required.

2007-2008 Spring

29301/39301 The Idea of Europe in Realist Prose

(=CMLT 29301. ENGL 28907/48907,ISHU 29303,SLAV 29800/39800)

The idea of Europe as a shared cultural space, in which different national cultures and literatures can engage in a dialogue, emerges in the second half of the nineteenth century in the works of the Western-European authors and several outsiders who include Gogol, Turgenev, and Henry James. This course examines the connections between the development of realist fiction and the formation of the transnational cultural conception of Europe as a realist-age successor of Goethe's conception of Weltliteratur. Our texts include fictional works, essays, and criticism by Goethe, Mme. de Stael Gogol, Tolstoy, Dostoevsky, Turgenev, and Henry James. Texts in English and the original; discussion and papers in English.

2007-2008 Spring

42300 The Romanticization of Greece: Friedrich Hölderlin Ezra Pound

(=ENGL 47211)

PQ: Reading knowledge of German. This course is a study in poetic idealization. Ancient Greece is unlike most other literary cultures: it stands for the actual historical realization of the highest artistic and broadly cultural values. No poet is so audacious as to suggest that Greece was somehow not quite good enough. Hölderlin and Pound, a century apart, imitated and translated Greek poetry. What did they see in that ancient poetry that fulfilled their own desires for the poems of their own times? Was Hölderlin's Sophocles the poet Pound translated into the 20th century? Why did Hölderlin admire and Pound despise the praise poems of Pindar? These are some of the questions we will engage in our reading of these poets. The course will be organized as a seminar. Each student will give one oral report and write one long essay.

2007-2008 Spring

43600 Nation Building

(=ENGL 42402)

This course explores the literature of nation-building. Readings include the Aeneid; Kipling's White Man's Burden and The Man Who Would Be King ; Conrad's Lord Jim ; T.E. Lawrence's Seven Pillars of Wisdom ; and various contemporary writings on Iraq.

2007-2008 Winter

47100 Nietzsche on Art and Literature

(=GRMN 47100,SCTH 47000)

This seminar will undertake a reconstruction of Nietzsche's aesthetic theory and critical practice as developed across his entire oeuvre , from the Geburt der Tragdie to Der Fall Wagner . Although canonical interpretations of Nietzsche's views (e.g., Simmel, Heidegger, Deleuze, Danto) as well as recent commentary (e.g., Figl, Gerhardt, Nehamus) will be considered as frameworks of interpretation, the primary concern of the seminar will be the close reading of Nietzsche's texts themselves. A particular concern will be the elaboration of Nietzsche's views (much discussed in recent scholarship) on rhetoric and on the relation of philosophical and literary language. (Graduate students only. Reading knowledge of German is required. Limit 20 students).

2007-2008 Autumn

47400 Heinrich von Kleist: Skepticism, Contingency, Intensity

(=GRMN 47300)

In this seminar we will interpret Kleist's writing (letters, essays, stories, plays, journalism) from three distinct but complimentary points of view: as an elaboration of the skeptical imaginary (including skepticism about knowledge, meaning and other minds); as a play with contingency (metaphysical, narratological, semiotic); as an experiment in modes of intensity (energetic, affective, aesthetic). A major task of the seminar will be to elaborate a unified conception of Kleist's literary project that accounts for its historical and structural specificity. Students will be expected to engage critically with major contributions to the secondary literature. (Graduate students only. Readings and discussion in German).

2007-2008 Winter

47700 African American and Caribbean Poetry

(=ENGL 47902)

This course will follow a seminar format: students will give reports to orient and initiate discussion of individual poets. In our discussion of poems—and the classes will focus on single poems—the role of musicality, oratory, and vernacular speech will figure prominently. We will be concerned to identify the distinctive features of these poets one by one: Edouard Glissant, Kamau Brathwaite, Derek Walcott; Jay Wright, Nathaniel Mackey, Carl Phillips, Thylias Moss, and Elizabeth Alexander. Students will give a formal report on a poet of their choosing, and will write an essay at the end of the quarter.

2007-2008 Autumn

50500 The Politics of Taste

(=ENGL 42403,PPHA 37501)

Taste has long been a concern of public policy. This course examines the history of efforts to define, monitor, control, and shape public tastes. Among the questions to be considered are: what constitutes a taste? What do tastes consist of? How can tastes be measured? What is hip, and how does fashion or faddishness affect tastes? What is the difference between good taste, distastefulness, and bad taste? How do these distinctions manifest themselves, and what ideological work do they do? What norms, principles, and interests underlie the distinction between good and bad taste, high-brow/middle-brow/lowbrow, the excellent and the merely popular? What tools are available for shaping tastes? We will discuss a few classic discussions of taste (Hume, Veblen, Adorno); more recent work on the subject by cultural critics, sociologists, and economists (Pierre Bourdieu, Michel Foucault, Raymond Williams, Paul Dimaggio, Pierre Bourdieu, Richard Peterson, Gary Becker); and recent policy research and governmental initiatives designed to affect public tastes. We will also be looking at some cases where works of literature, art, dance, film, and antiquities-collecting generated conflicts about taste.

2007-2008 Spring

50600 French Philosophy

(=PHIL 58500)

Open to grad students. Prerequisites: Reading knowledge of French required. A close reading in French of Emmanuel Lvinas's Totalit et Infini. Some supplementary texts will be considered, but primarily as a way of situating Totalit et Infini within the corpus of Lvinas's work and within the history of 20th century European philosophy.

2007-2008 Autumn

50700 South Africa in the Global Imaginary: Textual and Visual Culture

(=ENGL 59302)

PQ: This seminar is for graduate students (MA and PhD) who have taken courses in either African/ post colonial literature or in film studies. Those uncertain of their qualifications should consult the instructor at the end of *autumn* quarter. This course will address the theoretical and methodological problems posed by the thoroughly Northern metropolitan category of the 'postcolonial' and its imposition of supposedly global categories on to distinctly local cultural forms and contents in South Africa. In addition to building knowledge of South African materials, seminar participants will thus develop tools for critiquing northern especially North American assumptions about 'postcolonial' generalities in form and content, which can be profitably used in other contexts that make up the global South. We will begin by interrogating the persistent power of Alan Paton's Cry Thy Beloved Country (novel and film) in the American imagination, from its initial publication in New York (1947) to it adoption in Oprah's Book Club (2001), as against local tastes in the same period from Nadine Gordimer's fiction to films like Come Back Africa and continue to examine local responses and challenges to metropolitan norms of literary form, especially in fiction and drama, as well as film. We will consider the impact of apartheid and anti apartheid writing (1960s to 1980s) on metropolitan as well as local audiences and also examine post apartheid local/global configurations that run south/south rather than south/north, including emergent writing by 'Indian' and other 'minority' South Africans.

2007-2008 Winter

21401 Latino/a Intellectual Thought

(=ENGL 22804,GNDR 22401,LACS 22804,SPAN 22801)

This course traces the history of Latina/o intellectual work that helped shape contemporary Latina/o cultural studies. Our focus is on how Chicanas/os and Puerto Ricans have theorized the history, society, and culture of Latinas/os in the United States. Themes include folklore and anthropology, cultural nationalism, postcolonialism, literary and cultural studies, community activism, feminism, sexuality, and the emergence of a pan-Latino culture. Throughout, we pay attention to the convergences and divergences of Chicana/o and Puerto Rican studies, especially as contemporary practitioners have encouraged us to (re)think Latina/o studies in a comparative framework.

2008-2009 Autumn

25001 Foucault and The History of Sexuality

(=GNDR 23100,HIPS 24300,PHIL 24800)

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.

2008-2009 Autumn

29801 B.A. Project and Workshop: Comparative Literature

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.

2008-2009 Autumn

23401 The Burden of History: A Nation and Its Lost Paradise

(=SOSL 27300/37300)

We will look at the narrative of loss and redemption through which Balkan countries retell the Ottoman past. With the help of Freud‚s analysis of masochistic desire and Zizek's theory of the subject as constituted by trauma, we will contemplate the national fixation on the trauma of loss and the dynamic between victimhood and sublimity. The figure of the Janissary will highlight the significance of the other in the definition of the self. Some possible texts are Petar Njego'‚ Mountain Wreath, Ismail Kadare's The Castle, and Anton Donchev's Time of Parting.

2008-2009 Spring

23500 Gender and Literature in South Asia

(=GNDR 23001/33001,SALC 23002/33002)

Prior knowledge of South Asia not required. This course investigates representations of gender and sexuality, especially of females and the feminine in South Asian literature (i.e., from areas now included in the nations of Bangladesh, India, Nepal, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka). Topics include classical Indian literature and sexual motifs, the female voice as a devotional/literary stance, gendered nationalism, the feminist movements, class and gender, and women's songs. Texts in English.

2008-2009 Spring

24001 Autobiography in the 20th Century

(=ENGL 25920,ISHU 24002)

Course meets the critical/intellectual methods course requirement for students majoring in Comparative Literature . This course will explore autobiography as a genre and the theoretical issues it raises. We will examine how autobiography problematizes memory, truth and fiction, ethnic/racial identity and the relationship to the body, and the connections between the individual and the collective in history. Using a variety of texts, we will investigate contemporary strategies of self-representation and constructions of subjectivity that emerged in the 20th century. Readings will include Christa Wolf's Patterns of Childhood , Gertrude Stein's Autobiography of Alice B Toklas , Art Spiegelman's Maus , Maxine Hong Kingston's The Woman Warrior , Benjamin Wilkomirski's Fragments , Eva Hoffman's Lost in Translation , Vladimir Nabokov's Speak, Memory , Mary McCarthy's Confessions of a Catholic Girlhood , and the film Big Fish, alongside theoretical works by Paul John Eakin, Sidonie Smith, Julia Watson, G Thomas Couser, and others.

2008-2009 Spring

29800 Jewish American Literature, Post-1945

(=ENGL 25004/45002,GRMN 27800/37800,YDDH 27800/37800)

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.

2008-2009 Spring

29801 B.A. Project and Workshop: Comparative Literature

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.

2008-2009 Spring

20400 Tragedy in Early Modern Spain and England

(=ENGL 16708,SPAN 22001)

Course meets the critical/intellectual methods course requirement for students majoring in Comparative Literature. Early modern England and Golden Age Spain built thriving public theaters that broke away from the confines of neoclassicism to create some of the seminal tragedies of western civilization. As we compare the development of the public theater in both countries during the 17th century, and trace their shared Senecan heritage, we will also consider their distinct treatment of women in the performance space, and the nations' opposing Protestant and Catholic orientations. Plays from the two national theaters will be paired according to the themes of revenge, desengao , female power, and damnation as represented in tragedies by Lope de Vega and Middleton, Shakespeare and Caldern, Webster and Claramonte, and Shadwell and Tirso. The class will use English translations of the Spanish plays, but readers of Spanish will be encouraged to read the Spanish texts in the original. Spanish concentrators taking this course for their major will be required to read texts in the original Spanish.

2008-2009 Winter

23601 Rivalry, Glory, and Death: Competition and Manliness in Greco-Roman Antiquity

(=CLCV 24108,GNDR 24102,HUMA 24108)

This course explores the complex relationship between competition and manliness in Greco-Roman antiquity. We will examine a diverse range of examples of competition in the hopes of arriving at a deeper understanding of how manliness was defined, contested, and won in the time period ranging from archaic Greece to Augustan Rome. The course will consider questions such as whether the characteristics of manliness change over time or remain static; how the type of competition impacts the values at stake; whether it is necessary that manly acts be narrated by a poet or witnessed by spectators; and what dangers are tied to making the transition to manhood. We will explore such issues through a wide selection of literary representations of competition, ranging from the conflict between Achilles and Agamemnon in Homer's Iliad to Cicero's invective against Marc Antony in his Philippics; and from the athletic hymns of Pindar and Bacchylides to the poetic contests between shepherds in Theocritean and Vergilian pastoral. Other authors to be considered include Plato, Sophocles, Aristophanes, Plautus, Catullus, and Ovid. All texts will be read in translation. Material evidence, such as monuments and statues, will also be examined. The course will close with a brief consideration of the modern reception of ancient competition and manliness, focusing in particular on the nineteenth century rebirth of the Olympics and the 1936 Berlin games.

2008-2009 Winter

25900 Medieval Epic

(=ENGL 15800)

Course meets the critical/intellectual methods course requirement for students majoring in Comparative Literature . We will study a variety of heroic literature, including Beowulf , The Volsunga Saga, The Song of Roland, The Purgatorio, and the Alliterative Morte D'Arthur . A paper will be required, and there may be an oral examination.

2008-2009 Winter

29801 B.A. Project and Workshop: Comparative Literature

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.

2008-2009 Winter

30102 Seminar: Literary Criticism from Plato to Burke

(=ENGL 52502)

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.

2008-2009 Autumn

30203 Seminar: Poet-Critics

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.

2008-2009 Winter

20500/30500 History and Theory of Drama I

(=ANST 21200,CLAS 31200,CLCV 21200,ENGL 13800/31000,ISHU 24200/34200)

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.

2008-2009 Autumn

20600/30600 History and Theory of Drama II

(=ENGL 13900/31100,ISHU 24300/34300)

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: Molire, 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.

2008-2009 Winter

31600 Marxism and Modern Culture

(=ENGL 32300)

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.

2008-2009 Winter

22200/32200 Left-Wing Art and Soviet Film Culture of the 1920s

(=ARTH 28100/38100,CMST 24701/34701,SLAV 26700/36700)

The course will consider Soviet montage cinema of the twenties in the context of coeval aesthetic projects in other arts. How did Eisenstein's theory and practice of intellectual cinema connect to Fernand Leger and Vladimir Tatlin? What did Meyerkhold's biomechanics mean for film makers? Among other figures and issues, we will address Dziga Vertov and Constructivism, German Expressionism and Aleksandr Dovzhenko, Formalist poetics and FEKS directors. The course will be film-intensive (up to three hours of out-of-class viewings per week).

2008-2009 Spring

22201/32201 Magic Realist and Fantastic Writings from the Balkans

(=ISHU 27405,SOSL 27400/37400)

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.

2008-2009 Spring

22400/32400 History of International Cinema I: Silent Era

(=ARTH 28500/38500,ARTV 26500,CMST 28500/48500,ENGL 29300/47800,MAPH 33600)

This is the first part of a two-quarter course. The two parts may be taken individually, but taking them in sequence is helpful. The aim of this course is to introduce what was singular about the art and craft of silent film. Its general outline is chronological. We also discuss main national schools and international trends of filmmaking.

2008-2009 Autumn

22500/32500 History of International Cinema II: Sound Era to 1960

(=ARTH 28600/38600,ARTV 26600,CMST 28600/48600,ENGL 29600/48900,MAPH 33700)

PQ: Prior or current registration in CMST 10100 required; CMLT 22400/32400 strongly recommended. The center of this course is film style, from the classical scene breakdown to the introduction of deep focus, stylistic experimentation, and technical innovation (sound, wide screen, location shooting). The development of a film culture is also discussed. Texts include Thompson and Bordwell's Film History, An Introduction; and works by Bazin, Belton, Sitney, and Godard. Screenings include films by Hitchcock, Welles, Rossellini, Bresson, Ozu, Antonioni, and Renoir.

2008-2009 Winter

22601/32601 Cinema from the Balkans

(=ISHU 27603,SOSL 27600/37600)

This course is designed as an overview of major cinematic works from Bulgaria, Albania, Greece, Rumania, former Yugsolavia and Turkey. While the main criterion for selection will be the artistic quality of the work, the main issues under consideration will be those of identity, gender, the poignant relation with the Western World, memories of conflict and violence, socialism, its disintegration and subsequent emigration. We will compare the conceptual categories through which these films make sense of the world and especially the sense of humor with which they come to terms with that world. Some directors whose work we will examine: Vulchanov, Andonova (Bulgaria), Kusturica, Makavejev, Grlic (Former Yugoslavia), Guney (Turkey), Boulmetis (Greece), Manchevski (Macedonia).

2008-2009 Autumn

22801/32801 Isaac Bashevis Singer and Saul Bellow: Jewish Novelists of the Twentieth Century

(=GRMN 23709/33709,YDDH 23709/33709)

The course will examine the novels of arguably the two most important Jewish novelists of the twentieth century. Isaac Bashevis Singer's debut Satan in Goray (1933) was followed by many novels in various sub-genres: family chronicle, historical, and autobiographical. Singer's novels were initially serialized in the Yiddish press in Poland and after 1935 in the US, and then adapted in English translation. Saul Bellow's main contribution was his novels from his debut Dangling Man (1944) to Ravelstein (2000). Using current methodological approaches to the novel as presented in Franco Moretti's The Novel (2006), we will discuss how Bellow and Singer renewed novelistic forms and styles. The course will discuss the main features of the Jewish novel in the twentieth century (Franz Kafka, Joseph Roth, and Shmuel Agnon) that influenced Bellow and Singer.

2008-2009 Winter

23101/33101 Twentieth Century Literature from the Balkans

(=SOSL 26500/36500)

In this course, we will examine the works of major writers from former Yugoslavia, Bulgaria, Albania, Rumania, Greece, and Turkey from the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. We will examine how their works grapple with the issues of national identity and their countries' place in the Balkans and in Europe, with the legacies of the Austro-Hungarian and the Ottoman Empires, with socialism and its demise, with emigration, as well as simply with the modern experience of being. We will compare the conceptual and mythic categories through which these works make sense of the world and argue for and against considering such categories constitutive of an overall Balkan sensibility. The readings will include works by Orhan Pamuk, Ivo Andri, Norman Manea, Mesa Selimovi, Danilo Kis, Miroslav Krle a, Ismail Kadare and others.

2008-2009 Winter

23201/33201 Returning the Gaze: The Balkans and Western Europe

(=SOSL 27200/37200)

This course will investigate 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 will focus on the problems of Orientalism, Balkanism and nesting orientalisms, as well as on self-mythologization and self-exoticization. We will also think about differing models of masculinity, and of the figure of the gypsy as a metaphor for the national self in relation to the West. The course will conclude by considering the role that the imperative to belong to Western Europe played in the Yugoslavian wars of the 1990s.

2008-2009 Autumn

33800 Love's Books, Love's Looks: Textual and Visual Perspectives on the Roman de la Rose

(=CDIN 41400,ARTH 42208,FREN 31403,GNDR 31600)

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.

2008-2009 Autumn

23801/33801 Mandel'shtam and Celan

(=RUSS 23800/33800)

Both the Russian poet Osip Mandel'shtam and the German poet Paul Celan envisioned a poem as a message in a bottle written to an unknown reader in the future. Placing ourselves in the position of such a reader we will conduct a detailed reading of the poetry and prose of these two poets-one who died in a holocaust in the east, the other who survived the Holocaust in the west-to try to decipher what this message may be. Particular emphasis will be place on the ways in which poetics and ethics overlap for both authors. Secondary readings will likely include works by Tynyanov, Heidegger, Levinas, Bakhtin and Adorno. No knowledge of Russian or German expected.

2008-2009 Autumn

24201/34201 The Alice Books

(=PORT 26801/36801)

We will read Lewis Carroll's Alice's Adventures in Wonderland (1865) and Through the Looking-Glass, and What Alice Found There (1871). Some topics to be discussed are (alphabetically) animals, children, conversation, intention, justice and fairness, meaning of a word, malapropism, manners, pastoral, pictures, poems. Discussions will sometimes be accompanied by additional texts, which only occasionally count as secondary bibliography. Among these, we may read texts by Austin, Davidson, Empson, Oakeshott, Pitcher, Rawls, Russell, Wittgenstein and others.

2008-2009 Spring

24301/34301 Poems and Essays

(=ENGL 26702/46702,SCTH 34320)

This course will focus on five poets who also wrote essays: Charles Baudelaire, Wallace Stevens, Gottfried Benn, Joseph Brodsky, and Zbigniew Herbert. We will first read poems by each of these authors, then we will turn to the essays. Our objective is to study both poems and essays as artful writing; we will not be looking to the essays for explanations of the poems, though some of the essays we will read do directly concern the art of poetry. Certain literary critical questions will no doubt arise: to what extent does the art of the essay depend upon brilliant moments, as poems often do? Is continuity a necessary feature of an artful essay? Is the persuasive objective of an essayist altogether different from the objectives of a poet? How far can rhetorical analysis take one in understanding lyric poetry? Each student will give one oral report (of about ten minutes) on one of the writers in the course, and also write a final essay (of ca. 15 pp., on a topic to be approved by one of the instructors) due at the end of the quarter.

2008-2009 Autumn

24401/34401 Beautiful Souls, Adventurers and Rogues. The European 18th-Century Novel

(=FREN 25301/35301)

The course will examine several major 18th-century novels, including Manon Lescaut by Prevost, Pamela by Richardson, Shamela by Fielding, La Nouvelle Héloïse by Rousseau, Jacques le Fataliste by Diderot, and The Sufferings of Young Werther by Goethe. The course is taught in English. A weekly session in French will be held for majors and graduate students in French and Comparative Literature.

2008-2009 Spring

25101/35101 History, Philosophy and the Politics of Psychoanalysis

(=PHIL 25401/35401)

A reading of some central texts of Freud (both early and late) in the context of a study of the role of psychoanalysis in contemporary European philosophy. Other authors to be read may include Foucault, Deleuze and Guatteri, Marcuse, and Derrida.

2008-2009 Winter

25301/35301 Sociology of Literature

(=ENGL 25306/42404)

This course explores the critical potential and limitations of a few key sociological approaches to literature, working with the London literary scene of the 1890s as our case. We will focus on Bourdieu's theorization of the field of cultural production; Foucault's analytics of power/knowledge and discursive formations; Luhman's influential systems theory; and recent efforts by Moretti and others to import geographic and evolutionary models into literary studies.

2008-2009 Autumn

25701/35701 Comparative Literature of the Americas

(=ENGL 22809/42804,LACS 22809/42804,SPAN 22803/32803)

The last decade has seen a dramatic shift away from nation-based approaches to literary studies and a desire to move towards more transnational approaches. But how and more importantly why should we do so? What is to be gained? This course will explore these conceptual questions as we read primary texts from late eighteenth and nineteenth-century Spanish America and the U.S..

2008-2009 Autumn

29100/39100 Renaissance Epic

(=CMLT 29100 ,ENGL 36300/16300)

A study of classical epic in the Renaissance or Early Modern period. Emphasis will be both on texts and on classical epic theory. We will read Tasso's Jerusalem Delivered , Cames' Lusiads , and Milton's Paradise Lost . A paper will be required and perhaps an examination.

2008-2009 Winter

29401/39401 Classic Yiddish Fiction: Sholem-Aleichem and the Diasporic Imagination

(=ENGL 28908/48909,GRMN 27708/37708,RUSS 22901/32901,YDDH 27708/37700)

This seminar examines the Yiddish writer Sholem-Aleichem's work as a prime example of the diasporic imagination in modern Jewish literature. Key texts (e.g., Tevye the Dairyman , the Railroad Stories , Menakhem Mendel ) are discussed in the context of Russian Jewry's crisis and transformation at the turn of the twentieth century. Sholem-Aleichem's encounter with America during his visit in 1905-06 and his immigration in 1914 are discussed in connection with his play writing for the Yiddish stage and cinema. We examine Sholem-Aleichem's unique literary universe and style as the pivotal expression of classic Yiddish fiction.

2008-2009 Autumn

39800 Jewish American Literature, Post-1945

(=ENGL 25004/45002,GRMN 27800/37800,YDDH 27800/37800)

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.

2008-2009 Spring

20800/40800 Brecht and Beyond

(=ENGL 24400/44505)

Brecht is indisputably the most influential playwright in the twentieth century. In this course we will explore the range and variety of Brecht's own theatre, from the anarchic plays of the 1920's to the political learning plays to the classical parable plays, as well as the works of his heirs in Germany (Heiner Mller, Peter Weiss), Britain (John Arden, Caryl Churchill), and sub-Saharan Africa (Ngugi, and various South African practitioners). We will consider the impact of Brechtian theory on film, from Brecht's own Kuhle Wampe to Jean-Luc Godard to African film makers. PQ: Juniors, seniors and/or graduate students with at least one of the following: Intro to Cinema, History and Theory of drama, or their equivalents. Working knowledge of German and/or French would be helpful but is not required.

2008-2009 Winter

42100 Gods, Titans, and the Ode

(=GREK 45700)

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.

2008-2009 Spring

42200 Poems and Songs

(=CDIN 41600,MUSI 42309)

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.

2008-2009 Spring

50000 The Moral and Political Philosophy of Foucault

(=PHIL 50212)

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.

2008-2009 Autumn

51200 Translating Theory

(=CDIN 51200,ENGL 59303,SLAV 40200,GRMN 51200)

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.

2008-2009 Spring

51400 Montage: History, Theory, Practice

(=CMST 67201)

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.

2008-2009 Winter

24701 Sensibility, Sensation, and Sexuality

(=ENGL 25307)

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 .

2009-2010 Autumn

25001 Foucault and The History of Sexuality

(=FNDL 22001,GNDR 23100,HIPS 24300,PHIL 24800)

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.

2009-2010 Autumn

25901 Reading Modern Poets

(=ENGL 27805/47215,SCTH 34340)

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.

2009-2010 Autumn

29801 B.A. Project and Workshop: Comparative Literature

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.

2009-2010 Autumn

20801 Before and after Beckett: Theater and Film

(=CMST 24203/44203,ENGL 24401/44506)

PQ: Third- or fourth-year standing, and at least one prior course in modern drama or film. This course meets the critical/intellectual methods course requirement for students who are majoring in Comparative Literature. Working knowledge of French helpful but not required. Beckett is conventionally typed as the playwright of minimalist scenes of unremitting bleakness. But his experiments with theater and film echo the irreverent play of popular culture (vaudeville on stage and film, including Chaplin and Keaton) and the artistic avant-garde (Dreyer in film; Jarry and Artaud in theater). This course juxtaposes this early twentieth-century work with Beckett's plays on stage and screen, as well as those of his contemporaries (Ionesco, Duras) and successors. Contemporary authors depend on availability but may include Vinaver, Minyana, and Lagarce (France); Pinter and Greenaway (England); and Foreman and Wellman (United States). Theoretical work may include texts by Artaud, Barthes, Derrida, Josette Feral, Peggy Phelan, and Bert States.

2009-2010 Spring

26400 Introduction to the Renaissance

(=ITAL 22200)

This course examines the birth and development of the European Renaissance, with a special focus on sixteenth-century culture, philosophy, and literature. After an introductory analysis of Francesco Petrarca's Italian and Latin works, we will examine the phenomenon of Italian Humanism. Then, we will focus on some of the most important Renaissance philosophers, such as Giovanni Pico della Mirandola, Marsilio Ficino, Erasmus, Montaigne, Bruno. We will also read a selection of Renaissance lyric poetry with a special focus on authors, whose work has a philosophical content, including Michelangelo, Bembo, Camões, and Scève. The final section of our class will examine the impact on Catholic Counter-reformation on the evolution of the Renaissance.

2009-2010 Spring

26801 Love-Songs

(=ENGL 27806/47213)

This course examines certain themes in poems and in popular song-lyrics that include devotion, sentiment, serial desire, bought love, and aged love. Many song-lyrics are tin pan alley tunes, often in their jazz versions. Students are encouraged to suggest songs that have particularly strong lyrics. Poems come from various historical periods, with the Norton Anthology of Poetry as our source.

2009-2010 Spring

27701 Imaginary Worlds: The Fantastic and Magic Realism in Russia and Southeastern Europe

(=SOSL 27700/37700,RUSS 27300/37300)

In this course, we will ask what constitutes the fantastic and magic realism as literary genres while reading some of the most interesting writings to have come out of Russia and Southeastern Europe. While considering the stylistic and narrative specificities of the genres, we will also think about their political functions - from subversive to escapist, to supportive of a nationalist imaginary - in different contexts and at different historic moments in the two regions. We will ask whether there are such things as a Balkan and Russian type of magic realism and we will think about the differences between the genres of magic realism and the fantastic. We will also look at the similarities of the works from different countries – the lyricism of expression, eroticism and nostalgia, and will argue for and against considering such similarities constitutive of an overall Balkan sensibility.

2009-2010 Spring

29801 B.A. Project and Workshop: Comparative Literature

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.

2009-2010 Spring

21701 Poetics of Dislocation

(=ENGL 25922/43706)

This course explores crises of placelessness and displacement as modern and contemporary verse has attempted to map them: from modernist cosmopolitan collage to poetry of exile, migration, and diaspora, the work we will study, lodged between tongues, 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 polylingualism, dialect, creole, barbarism, and thwarted translation; we will delve ultimately into some examples of poetic reckoning with the transformation of the site of reading, in the form of new media, installation and otherwise ambient poetics. Poets to include William Carlos Williams, Charles Olson, John Ashbery, Amelia Rosselli, Andrea Zanzotto, Paul Celan, Theresa Hak Kyung Cha, Pamela Lu, Etel Adnan, M. Nourbese Philip, C.S. Giscombe, Édouard Glissant, Kamau Brathwaite, Caroline Bergvall. Readings in geography, aesthetics, translation by David Harvey, James Clifford, Marc Auge, Rem Koolhaas, Timothy Morton, Toni Morrison, Lucy Lippard, Juliana Spahr, others.

2009-2010 Winter

27000 Historicizing Desire

(=CLCV 27706,EALC 27410,GNDR 28001)

This course meets the critical/intellectual methods course requirement for students who are majoring in Comparative Literature. This course examines conceptions of desire in ancient China and ancient Greece through an array of early philosophical, literary, historical, legal, and medical texts (e.g., Mencius, Sima Qian, Book of Songs, Plato, Sappho). We attempt not only to bring out the cultural specificities of ancient erotic experience but also to make visible the historical and geopolitical contingencies of our own methods of reading. To do so, we explore the broader cultural background of the two ancient periods, and engage with theoretical debates on the history of sexuality, feminist and queer studies, and intercultural comparative studies.

2009-2010 Winter

29801 B.A. Project and Workshop: Comparative Literature

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.

2009-2010 Winter

20401/30401 Jewish Thought and Literature III: The Multilingual Twentieth Century

(=JWSC 20006,JWSG 30006,NEHC 20406/30406)

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.

2009-2010 Spring

20500/30500 History and Theory of Drama I

(=ANST 21200,CLAS 31200,CLCV 21200,ENGL 13800/31000,ISHU 24200/34200)

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.

2009-2010 Autumn

20600/30600 History and Theory of Drama II

(=ENGL 13900/31100,ISHU 24300/34300)

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.

2009-2010 Winter

20901/30901 Shakespeare, Marlowe, Benjamin, and Brecht

(=ENGL 16709/36709)

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.

2009-2010 Autumn

21001/31001 The Theatrical Illusion: Corneille, Kushner and the Baroque

(=FREN 28000/38000,TAPS 28460)

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.

2009-2010 Winter

21201/31201 Contemporary European Philosophy and Religion

(=DPVR 40900,PHIL 21209/31209)

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.

2009-2010 Winter

21501/31501 Prefaces

(=PORT 23000/33000,SCTH 30611)

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.

2009-2010 Spring

21801/31801 Caribbean Fiction: Self-understanding and Exoticism

(=FREN 23500/33500)

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.

2009-2010 Spring

22301/32301 Tolstoy's War and Peace

(=RUSS 22302/32302,HIST 23704,FNDL 27103,ISHU 22304,ENGL 28912/ 32302)

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.

2009-2010 Autumn

22501/32501 Vico's New Science

(=ITAL 22900/32900,FNDL 21408)

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.

2009-2010 Winter

32701 What Is An Author?

(=ITAL 32800,SCTH 32800)

The course is directed primarily to graduate students, and is aimed at stimulating a theoretical approach to modern literature. It focuses on one of the most controversial categories of modernity: the author. From the time when works of art ceased to circulate anonymously, the notion of the author enjoyed an obvious existence for centuries. In the twentieth century, however, many literary theories ratified the irrelevance of the author, and celebrated its eclipse. We shall discuss pertinent theoretical writings by Barthes, Foucault, Eco, Benjamin, Booth, Genette, Bazin, and others, as well as some relevant literary works by Calvino, Pasolini, and Moresco. Taught in English, with the majority of readings in English. C.

2009-2010 Spring

22901/32901 Film Noir: French and American

(=ENGL 28911/47214)

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 .

2009-2010 Spring

33301 Balkan Folklore

(=SOSL 26800/36800)

This course will give an overview of Balkan folklore from ethnographic, anthropological, historical/political, and performative perspectives. We will 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, will help us understand folk tradition as a dynamic process. We will also 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 visit to the classes and rehearsals of the Chicago based ensemble Balkanske igre.

2009-2010 Winter

34101 Embracing the Past, Struggling with the Present; Poetry's Quest for Meaning

(=ENGL 34560, SCTH 34350)

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.

2009-2010 Autumn

24501/34501 Lyric Genres from Classical Antiquity to Postmodernism

(=CLAS 37109,CLCV 27109,SLAV 24501/34501)

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.

2009-2010 Spring

24901/34901 Cosmopolitanisms

(=ENGL 24305/34901)

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.

2009-2010 Spring

25501/35501 Humor in Yiddish Literature and Culture

(=ENGL 28913/37404,GRMN 25510/35510,YDDH 25510/35510)

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.

2009-2010 Spring

35901 Reading Modern Poets

(=ENGL 27805/47215,SCTH 34340)

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.

2009-2010 Autumn

36400 Interpreting Goethe's Faust

(=GRMN 36409,SCTH 47011)

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.

2009-2010 Autumn

26700/36700 Renaissance and Baroque Fairy Tales and their Modern Rewritings

(=HCUL 34400,ITAL 26200/36200)

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.

2009-2010 Winter

36801 Love-Songs

(=ENGL 27806/47213)

This course examines certain themes in poems and in popular song-lyrics that include devotion, sentiment, serial desire, bought love, and aged love. Many song-lyrics are tin pan alley tunes, often in their jazz versions. Students are encouraged to suggest songs that have particularly strong lyrics. Poems come from various historical periods, with the Norton Anthology of Poetry as our source.

2009-2010 Spring

37701 Imaginary Worlds: The Fantastic and Magic Realisin Russia and Southeastern Europe

(=SOSL 27700/37700,RUSS 27300/37300)

In this course we will ask what constitutes the fantastic and magic realism as literary genres while reading some of the most interesting writings to have come out of RUssia and Southeastern Europe. While considering the stylistic and narrative specificities of the genres, we will also think about their political functions - from subversive to escapist, to supportive of a nationalist imaginary - in different contexts and at different historic moments in the two regions. We will ask whether there are such things as a Balkan and Russian type of magic realism and we will think about the differences between the genres of magic realism and the fantastic. We will also look at the similarities of the works from different countries - the lyricism of expression, eroticism and nostalgia, and will argue for and against considering such similarities constitutive of an overall Balkan sensibility.

2009-2010 Spring

28101/38101 Don Quijote

(=CMLT 28101,FNDL 21211,RLLT 34202,SPAN 24202/34202)

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.

2009-2010 Winter

38300 Theories of Narrative

(=CLAS 37009,SLAV 37100)

This seminar will focus on critical approaches to narrative, story-telling, and discourse analysis. While the emphasis will be on the formalist/structuralist tradition (Shklovsky, Benveniste, Barthes, Genette), we will also discuss works by Plato, Aristotle, Bakhtin, Benjamin, Auerbach, Banfield, Silverstein, and others. Notably, most of these approaches were inspired by the analysis of modern European novel, and part of our task will be to test them against shorter narratives produced in different genres and historical periods (possible authors include Pindar, Cicero, Virgil, Pushkin, and Leskov).

2009-2010 Winter

39601 Historiography, Literature, Archaeology

(=EALC 37460)

This course examines the relation between historicity and the literary, using Sima Qian's Shiji ( Records of the Grand Historian ) as our 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 fictional, the spiritual, the theoretical), the exotic (the non-Chinese, the strange), 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 .

2009-2010 Spring

29800/39800 Jewish American Literature

(=ENGL 25004/45002,GRMN 29800/39800,YDDH 27800/37800)

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.

2009-2010 Winter

40100 Islamic Love Poetry

(=ISLM 40100,NEHC 40600)

PQ: Some acquaintance with one of the following: Urdu, Persian, Turkish, Ottoman, Arabic, Punjabi, Pasho, Hindi, or other relevant languages.

2009-2010 Spring

40200 Comparative Mystical Literature

(=ISLM 43300,RLIT 43600)

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

2009-2010 Autumn

20301/40300 Archaic Poetics

(=CLCV 27209,CLAS 47209,SLAV 20301/42200)

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.

2009-2010 Spring

40801 Before and after Beckett: Drama and Anti Drama in Theater and Film

(=CMST 28303/48303,ENGL 24402/44508,ISHU 28434,TAPS 28434)

PQ: Third- or fourth-year standing, and at least one prior course in modern drama or film. Working knowledge of French helpful but not required. Beckett is conventionally typed as the playwright of minimalist scenes of unremitting bleakness. But his experiments with theater and film echo the irreverent play of popular culture (vaudeville on stage and film, including Chaplin and Keaton) and the artistic avant-garde (Dreyer in film; Jarry and Artaud in theater). This course juxtaposes this early twentieth-century work with Beckett's plays on stage and screen, as well as those of his contemporaries (Ionesco, Duras) and successors. Contemporary authors depend on availability but may include Vinaver, Minyana, and Lagarce (France); Pinter and Greenaway (England); and Foreman and Wellman (United States). Theoretical work may include texts by Artaud, Barthes, Derrida, Josette Feral, Peggy Phelan, and Bert States.

2009-2010 Spring

40900 Styles of Performance and Expression from Stage to Screen

(=ARTH 38704,CMST 38401,ISHU 35250)

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).

2009-2010 Autumn

41200 Decolonizing Literature and Film in Southern Africa

(=ENGL 44507)

Required texts in English or translation but those working with Portuguese, Afrikaans, Zulu etc will be accommodated. While 'postcolonialism' may turn a complex and contradictory history into a tidy theory, decolonizing highlights the uneven and unfinished processes of writing and filming national, transnational and anti-national narratives, from the cultural nationalism of the 1940s and 1950s to the possibly post-national present. We will explore the links as well as the differences among the textual and cinematic cultures of South Africa, Zimbabwe, Angola and Mozambique and examine the potential and pitfalls of applying postcolonial and other theories to these cultures. Authors may include Nadine Gordimer, Athol Fugard, Zakes Mda, Shimmer Chinodya, Yvonne Vera, Tsitsi Dangarembga, Bessie Head, Luandino Vieira, and/or Mia Couto; theory and political analysis may include anticolonial writing by Fanon, Mandela, Neto, and Cabral and contemporary critics: Ann McClintock, Njabulo Ndebele, Kwame Appiah, Robert Mshengu Kavanagh and others.

2009-2010 Winter

41600 Whose Culture Is This, Anyway?

(=ENGL 42407)

The past few decades have seen an explosion of debates over the question of who should own cultural goods. The particular goods in question -- the Elgin marbles, artworks looted by the Nazis, the skeletal remains of Kennewick Man, shared files – are as various as the stakeholders (individual victims, nation-states, museums, musicians, etc.). This course explores the philosophical bases for claims to own artifacts, sounds, words, and ideas, and the policy conundrums posed by these claims (restitution, cultural rights, assertions of national control over cultural patrimony, copyright). We will also look at the ways in which some of these issues have entered the popular imaginary via fiction and film.

2009-2010 Winter

41701 Poetics of Disclocation

(=ENGL 25922/43706)

This course explores crises of placelessness and displacement as modern and contemporary verse has attempted to map them: from modernist cosmopolitan collage to poetry of exile, migration, and diaspora, the work we will study, lodged between tongues, 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 polylingualism, dialect, creole, barbarism, and thwarted translation; we will delve ultimately into some examples of poetic reckoning with the transformation of the site of reading, in the form of new media, installation and otherwise ambient poetics. Poets to include William Carlos Williams, Charles Olson, John Ashbery, Amelia Rosselli, Andrea Zanzotto, Paul Celan, Theresa Hak Kyung Cha, Pamela Lu, Etel Adnan, M. Nourbese Philip, C.S. Giscombe, Édouard Glissant, Kamau Brathwaite, Caroline Bergvall. Readings in geography, aesthetics, translation by David Harvey, James Clifford, Marc Auge, Rem Koolhaas, Timothy Morton, Toni Morrison, Lucy Lippard, Juliana Spahr, others.

2009-2010 Winter

43300 Baudelaire

(=FREN 43300,RLIT 43500)

PQ: All French works will be read in the original. Requirements for the course are one oral presentation, and one seminar paper. This course will look at Baudelaire and his surroundings, from the revolution of 1848 and its historians (Tocqueville in particular); to the artists that fascinated Baudelaire (Daumier, Delacroix, Guys, Wagner) and what the poet wrote about them; to the changes in Paris thanks to the Baron Haussmann; to the writers and political thinkers who most influenced the poet (Poe, E.T.A. Hoffmann, Hugo, de Quincey, Maistre, Proudhon); to Baudelaire's obsession with original sin; to, of course, Baudelaire's own works and development. We will also consider some of the major works of critical theory that concern the poet (including Benjamin, Burton, Chambers, Derrida, T.J.Clark, Blanchot, DeMan, and Poulet, to name a few).

2009-2010 Winter

46500 Seminar: Greek Tragedy in Africa

(=GREK 46509)

This course will trace the progress of two bursts of dramatic creativity: tragedy in fifth century Athens and adaptations of tragedy in twentieth century Africa (including South Africa, Nigeria, Ghana and Egypt). We will read and discuss genre, thematic concerns, and interpretative problems in plays by Euripides and Sophocles. In alternating weeks, we will discuss these topics and issues of cultural and postcolonial identity as they relate to adaptations written by Wole Soyinka, Athol Fugard, Ola Rotimi and others in the 1960s and 70s. All plays will be read in their original language, but students without knowledge of Greek may enroll with instructor's consent.

2009-2010 Winter

26900/46900 Owning and Disowning: J. M. Coetzee

(=ENGL 28605/48605)

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.

2009-2010 Autumn

47000 Circulation, Sensibility, and the Discourses of Modern Value

(=ARTH 48509,ENGL 48606,GNDR 48600)

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.

2009-2010 Autumn

50100 Seminar: Tragedy and the Tragic

(=CLAS 40709)

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.

2009-2010 Autumn

50200 Seminar: Catharsis and other Aesthetic Responses

(=ENGL 59304,CMST 50200)

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 and Cinema and Media Studies. 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. For other humanities PhDs: ACTIVE working knowledge of at least one of the following: French, German, (classical) Greek or Spanish. This PhD seminar examines the ramifications of catharsis and other responses to texts and images, in other words it investigates the relationship between effect and affect. Beginning with Aristotle and present day responses to catharsis, we will investigate the kinds of aesthetic response invoked by tragic drama and theory (esp Hegel), realism (Lukacs, Bazin and Brecht), as well as theories of pleasure (Barthes, Derrida), judgment (Kant, Bourdieu) and boredom (Spacks). We will conclude with a test case, exploring the potential and limitations of catharsis as an appropriate response to the literary and cinematic representation of trauma in and after the Argentine 'dirty war.' An essential part of the discussion will be the problem of translating key terms, not only from one language to another but also from one theoretical discourse and/or medium to another.

2009-2010 Winter

51500 Race, Media, and Visual Culture

(=CDIN 51300,ENGL 51300,ARTH 49309,CMST 51300,ARTV 55500)

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.

2009-2010 Autumn

22401 U.S. Literary and Intellectual History: From Subject to Citizen

(=ENGL 22815,CRES 22815,LACS 22815)

How does one go from being a subject of the King to becoming a citizen? From where does one acquire the language to think of equality? In the late eighteenth century, many revolutionary Spaniards and Spanish Americans travelled throughout the Atlantic world seeking to make the philosophy of equality a reality and gain independence of the Spanish colonies. They travelled to and from Europe and Spanish America; and on to New Orleans, Charleston, DC, Philadelphia, and New York. Through their voyages, these individuals would bring this new political language of rights to the places they visited, imbibing of this political philosophy by reading and through conversations and discussions. They produced, as well, a plethora of publications and writings that circulated throughout the Atlantic world. Through lecture and class discussion, we'll learn of these individuals, their circuits of travel, and their desire to create a modern world. Our focus will be on the communities, individuals, and texts that were published and circulated in what is today the United States. We'll begin with the late eighteenth century and work our way through the nineteenth century. The course will be interdisciplinary. Lecture, discussion, and most of the readings will be in English. Spanish and French reading skills will be useful.

2010-2011 Autumn

25601 The Re-Enchantment of the World: The Sacred and the Secular in Modern Literature and Philosophy

(=ENGL 25939,ITAL 25900,RLST 26701)

Looking at nineteenth- and twentieth-century creative literature, memoirs, and philosophical works, we investigate the connections between modernity and new forms of religious thought. With burgeoning scientific explanations for what were once perceived as miracles, combined with the array of religious and irreligious choices offered by an increasingly secular society, how do modern thinkers approach the problem of transcendent or mystical experience? Why has the yearning toward an ultimate, sacred reality proven strong in apparently secular authors? How does a rising interest in Hindu and Buddhist philosophy impact upon ancient Western debates about the relationship between the material and the spiritual? We explore such questions through detailed engagement with a series of short but challenging readings. Authors include Giacomo Leopardi, Friedrich Nietzsche, Henry David Thoreau, Emily Dickinson, Rainer Maria Rilke, Miguel de Unamuno, Henri Bergson, Virginia Woolf, T. S. Eliot, Eugenio Montale, and Pier Paolo Pasolini. Classes conducted in English. Students taking the course for credit toward the Italian major or minor read and discuss Leopardi, Montale, Pasolini, and others in special sessions conducted in Italian.

2010-2011 Autumn

29801 BA Project and Workshop: Comparative Literature

Required of fourth-year students who are majoring in CMLT. This workshop begins in Autumn Quarter and continues through the middle of Spring Quarter. While the BA 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 is assigned in the Spring Quarter, based partly on participation in the workshop and partly on the quality of the BA paper. Attendance at each class section required.

2010-2011 Autumn

21403 Introduction to Narratology

(=GRMN 21411,FREN 21411)

The first part of this course is designed as an overview of some major theories of narrative. We will focus on structuralist approaches such as those of Roland Barthes and Grard Genette's, but also discuss texts such as Benjamin's analysis of the narrator, Bakhtin's theory of polyphony, and new approaches to narratology in the field of cognitive poetics. In the second part, we will analyze literary examples taken especially from German and French literature from the 18th to the 20th century. A special emphasis will lie on different narrative representations of consciousness, in free indirect speech (Flaubert), the stream of consciousness (Joyce), or narrative styles that try to render more visual forms of consciousness (Musil). Finally, we will consider some experimental forms of narrative from the later 20th century (Queneau, Perec, D. Grossman).

2010-2011 Spring

21600 Comparative Fairy Tale

(=GRMN 28500,NORW 28500)

For some, fairy tales count as sacred tales meant to enchant rather than to edify. For others, they are cautionary tales, replete with obvious moral lessons. Critics have come to apply all sorts of literary approaches to fairy tale texts, ranging from stylistic analyses to psychoanalytical and feminist readings. For the purposes of this course, we assume that these critics are correct in their contention that fairy tales contain essential underlying meanings. We conduct our own readings of fairy tales from the German Brothers Grimm, the Norwegians, Asbjørnsen and Moe, and the Dane, Hans Christian Andersen. We rely on our own critical skills as well as on selected secondary readings. All work in English.

2010-2011 Spring

27101 Chinese Historiography

(=EALC 27101)

PQ: Two literary Chinese courses. This course introduces Han dynasty historiography and its relation to the Chinese literary tradition. Through close readings of the Shiji and Hanshu , we explore a range of prose and poetic forms and consider traditional and comparative methods of interpretation.

2010-2011 Spring

27602 Renaissance Demonology

(=HIST 22110,ITAL 26500,RLST 26501)

This course analyzes the complex concept of demonology according to early modern European culture from a theological, historical, philosophical, and literary point of view. The term demon in the Renaissance encompasses a vast variety of meanings. Demons are hybrids. They are both the Christian devils, but also synonyms for classical deities, and Neo-Platonic spiritual beings. As far as Christian theology is concerned, we read selections from Augustine's and Thomas Aquinas's treatises, some complex exorcisms written in Italy, and a new recent translation of the infamous Malleus maleficarum , the most important treatise on witch-hunt. We pay close attention to the historical evolution of the so-called witch-craze in Europe through a selection of the best secondary literature on this subject, with special emphasis on Michel de Certeau's The Possession at Loudun . We also study how major Italian and Spanish women mystics, such as Maria Maddalena de' Pazzi and Teresa of Avila, approach the issue of demonic temptation and possession. As far as Renaissance Neo-Platonic philosophy is concerned, we read selections from Marsilio Ficino's Platonic Theology and Girolamo Cardano's mesmerizing autobiography. We also investigate the connection between demonology and melancholy through a close reading of the initial section of Robert Burton's Anatomy of Melancholy and Cervantes's short story The Glass Graduate (El licenciado Vidriera) . Classes conducted in English.

2010-2011 Spring

28102 Cervantes's Enigmatic Feasts: The Exemplary Novels and Don Quixote, Part II

(=REMS 34301,SPAN 24311/34311)

This course focuses on The Exemplary Novels (1613) and Don Quijote, Part II (1615) from the point of view of calendared feasts. To the recently instituted Gregorian calendar, the novel superimposes at least three other time maps. First, the Julian calendar with its many feasts as depicted in Ovid's Fasti ; second, the celestial movement through the twelve signs of the zodiac as represented by Hercules' twelve labors; and third, the Egyptian lunar calendar that leads to the knight's defeat. This meandering through calendars creates an instability and sense of unease that recalls the changes in mapping that are taking place with the discovery of America and the change to a heliocentric cosmos. The Novelas show an inordinate interest in feasts while, as Don Quixote proceeds, a kind of dilatio takes place, as Don Quixote diverts his route over and over again from his destination (Zaragoza and the feast of St. George). Time then becomes a subjective phenomenon that affects both the reader and the characters. We examine Cervantes's novel through the lenses of Ovid's Fasti and Apuleius' Golden Ass . Maps and paintings of the period are also examined. Classes taught in English. Students in Spanish and REMS read the text in the original language and write their papers in Spanish.

2010-2011 Spring

29801 BA Project and Workshop: Comparative Literature

Required of fourth-year students who are majoring in CMLT. This workshop begins in Autumn Quarter and continues through the middle of Spring Quarter. While the BA 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 is assigned in the Spring Quarter, based partly on participation in the workshop and partly on the quality of the BA paper. Attendance at each class section required.

2010-2011 Spring

21403 Introduction to Narratology

(=GRMN 21411)

The first part of this course is designed as an overview of some major theories of narrative. We will focus on structuralist approaches such as those of Roland Barthes and Gérard Genette's, but also discuss texts such as Benjamin's analysis of the narrator, Bakhtin's theory of polyphony, and new approaches to narratology in the field of cognitive poetics. In the second part, we will analyze literary examples taken especially from German and French literature from the 18th to the 20th century. A special emphasis will lie on different narrative representations of consciousness, in free indirect speech (Flaubert), the stream of consciousness (Joyce), or narrative styles that try to render more visual forms of consciousness (Musil). Finally, we will consider some experimental forms of narrative from the later 20th century (Queneau, Perec, D. Grossman).

2010-2011 Winter

23301 Balkan Folklore

(=NEHC 20568/30568,SOSL 26800/36800)

This course is an overview of Balkan folklore from ethnographic, 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, help us understand folk tradition as a dynamic process. We also consider the function of different folklore genres in the imagining and maintenance of community and the socialization of the individual. We also experience this living tradition first hand through our visit to the classes and rehearsals of the Chicago-based ensemble Balkanske igre.

2010-2011 Winter

26000 Medieval Vernacular Literature in the British Isles

(=ENGL 15801,RLST 28301)

This course meets the critical/intellectual methods course requirement for students who are majoring in Comparative Literature. This course covers the Celtic tradition, Old and Middle English, Anglo-Norman French, and a late text from Scotland. Texts include: from Old English, Beowulf; from Irish, The Battle of Moytura and the Tain, and two of the immrana or voyages that concern Bran Son of Ferbal and Mael Duin; from Anglo-Norman French, The Lays of Marie de France; from Welsh, The Four Branches from the Mabinogion; from Middle English, selections from The Canterbury Tales and Sir Gawain and the Green Knight; and from Scotland, Dunbar.

2010-2011 Winter

28700 Major Works of Modernism

(=GRMN 29000)

This course is centered on several canonical works of classical modernism: Hugo von Hofmannsthal's Ein Brief, Robert Walser's Jakob von Gunten , Thomas Mann's Tod in Venedig , Franz Kafka's Die Verwandlung , Arthur Schnitzler's Fräulein Else , and Bertolt Brecht's Mutter Courage und ihre Kinder ; and poetry by Stefan George, Hofmannsthal, Gottfried Benn, Rainer Maria Rilke, and Georg Trakl; as well as essays by Georg Simmel, Walter Benjamin, and Robert Musil. On the basis of the works studied, we endeavor to develop a concept of modernism sufficiently capacious to embrace radically opposed literary and cultural agendas. All work in German.

2010-2011 Winter

29801 BA Project and Workshop: Comparative Literature

Required of fourth-year students who are majoring in CMLT. This workshop begins in Autumn Quarter and continues through the middle of Spring Quarter. While the BA 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 is assigned in the Spring Quarter, based partly on participation in the workshop and partly on the quality of the BA paper. Attendance at each class section required.

2010-2011 Winter

24902/30400 Mimesis

(=CLAS 39200,EALC 30400)

This course will introduce the concept of mimesis (imitation, representation), tracing it from Plato and Aristole through some of its reformulations in recent literary and critical theory. Topics to be addressed include desire, postcolonialism, and non-western aesthetic traditions. Readings may include Plato, Aristotle, Euripides's Bacchae , Book of Songs , Lu Ji's Rhapsody on Literature , Auerbach, Butler, Derrida, Girard, Saussy, and Spivak.

2010-2011 Spring

20500/30500 History and Theory of Drama I

(=CLAS 31200,CLCV 21200,ENGL 13800/31000,TAPS 28400)

May be taken in sequence with CMLT 20600/30600 or individually. This course meets the general education requirement in the dramatic, musical, and visual arts. 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, 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.

2010-2011 Autumn

20600/30600 History and Theory of Drama II

(=ENGL 13900/31100,TAPS 28401)

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 (i.e., Molière, Goldsmith, Ibsen, Chekhov, Strindberg, Wilde, Shaw, Brecht, Beckett, Stoppard). Attention is also paid to theorists of the drama (e.g., Stanislavsky, Artaud, Grotowski). The goal is not to develop acting skill but, rather, 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 students. End-of-week workshops, in which individual scenes are read aloud dramatically and discussed, are optional but highly recommended.

2010-2011 Winter

20701/30701 Tolstoy: Fictions of Peace and War

(=RUSS 22500/32500)

This course is dedicated to the centennial of the death of Lev Tolstoy (1828-1910), one of the world's most important authors, political thinkers and religious reformers. We will read Tolstoy's novel-epic War and Peace as well as a number of shorter fictional works, plays, essays and philosophical treatises. The main objectives of this course will be to understand Tolstoy's artistic breakthroughs and consider the relevance of his political and cultural visions for our contemporary globalized world. Intellectual history will constitute a significant component of this course. Thus, in addition to Tolstoy's works, the reading list will include essays and treatises by German and French thinkers and writers who had influenced Tolstoy (Schleiermacher, Wilhelm von Humboldt, Benjamin Constant, Stendhal, Tocqueville, Joseph de Maistre and Pierre Proudhon). All texts are available in English. Discussion and final papers are also in English. The course is open to graduate students and undergraduates who major in Slavic, Comparative Literature, English or other relevant fields.

2010-2011 Winter

21101/31101 Roman Elegy

(=LATN 21100/31100)

The centerpiece of this class will be a reading of Book IV of the Elegies of Propertius. The class will, however, also consider elegy more broadly as an avant-garde poetic practice. To this end, we will look at Propertius' claim to be the Roman Callimachus in the light of the reinvention of Greek elegy by the Alexandrian poets. Finally, we will consider Ezra Pound's Homage to Sextus Propertius as a retroactive assimilation of Symbolism's Laforgian vector to the practice of the ancient elegists.

2010-2011 Autumn

31600 Marxism and Modern Culture

(=ENGL 32300)

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 departments, art history and possibly history. It is not suitable for students in the social sciences.

2010-2011 Winter

21901/31901 The Book of Kings: Ferdowsi's Shahnameh as World Literature

(=NEHC 20752/30752 FNDL 26102)

Ferdowsi completed his verse rendition of the tragic history of the Iranian nation a millennium ago, in 1010. Through close reading, lecture and discussion, this course will analyze the Shahnameh as world literature, and as a foundational text for Persian ethnicity and Iranian national feeling. We will consider the Shahnameh as epic genre, as comparative Indo-Iranian mythology, as political commentary, as reflective of ideals of masculinity and femininity, and as an illustrated text. All readings and discussions will be in English. A separate section will meet for those with two or more years of Persian to read the original Persian text.

2010-2011 Autumn

22201/32201 Magic Realist and Fantastic Writings from the Balkans

(=SOSL 27400/37400)

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.

2010-2011 Spring

22400/32400 History of International Cinema I: Silent Era

(=ARTH 28500/38500,ARTV 26500,CMST 28500/48500,ENGL 29300/47800,MAPH 33600)

PQ: Prior or concurrent enrollment in CMST 10100. This is the first part of a two-quarter course. Taking these courses in sequence is strongly recommended but not required. This course introduces what was singular about the art and craft of silent film. Its general outline is chronological. We also discuss main national schools and international trends of filmmaking.

2010-2011 Autumn

22500/32500 History of International Cinema II: Sound Era to 1960

(=ARTH 28600/38600,ARTV 26600,CMST 28600/48600,ENGL 29600/48900,MAPH 33700)

PQ: Prior or current registration in CMST 10100 required; CMLT 22400/32400 strongly recommended. The center of this course is film style, from the classical scene breakdown to the introduction of deep focus, stylistic experimentation, and technical innovation (sound, wide screen, location shooting). The development of a film culture is also discussed. Texts include Thompson and Bordwell's Film History: An Introduction ; and works by Bazin, Belton, Sitney, and Godard. Screenings include films by Hitchcock, Welles, Rossellini, Bresson, Ozu, Antonioni, and Renoir.

2010-2011 Spring

22601/32601 Cinema from the Balkans

(=SOSL 27600/37600,CMST 24402/34402)

This course is designed as an overview of major cinematic works from Bulgaria, Albania, Greece, Rumania, former Yugoslavia and Turkey. While the main criterion for selection is the artistic quality of the work, the main issues under consideration are those of identity, gender, the poignant relation with the Western World, memories of conflict and violence, and socialism and its disintegration and subsequent emigration. We compare the conceptual categories through which these films make sense of the world, especially the sense of humor with which they come to terms with that world. Directors whose work we examine include Vulchanov and Andonova (Bulgaria); Kusturica, Makavejev, and Grlic (Former Yugoslavia); Guney (Turkey); Boulmetis (Greece); and Manchevski (Macedonia).

2010-2011 Autumn

23201/33201 The Other within the Self: Identity in Balkan Literature and Film

This two-course sequence examines discursive practices in a number of literary and cinematic works from the South East corner of Europe through which identities in the region become defined by two distinct others: the barbaric, demonic Ottoman and the civilized Western European.

2010-2011 Autumn

33301 Balkan Folklore

(=NEHC 20568/30568,SOSL 26800/36800)

This course is an overview of Balkan folklore from ethnographic, 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, help us understand folk tradition as a dynamic process. We also consider the function of different folklore genres in the imagining and maintenance of community and the socialization of the individual. We also experience this living tradition first hand through our visit to the classes and rehearsals of the Chicago-based ensemble Balkanske igre.

2010-2011 Winter

23401/33401 The Other within the Self: Identity in Balkan Literature and Film

This two-course sequence examines discursive practices in a number of literary and cinematic works from the South East corner of Europe through which identities in the region become defined by two distinct others: the barbaric, demonic Ottoman and the civilized Western European.

2010-2011 Spring

23702/33702 Making a Scene

(=ENGL 25931/42409)

This course seeks to explore the arena of socialinteractions—from flirting to striving for status to solidarity-seeking and beyond—that is captured by the term the social scene. We make use of literary fiction (i.e., Austen, Flaubert, Wilde), artwork (i.e., Manet), film (i.e., Warhol), and television (i.e., Jersey Shore ) that helps bring into visibility the morphology, power dynamics, and ethical or political possibilities inherent in scenes. We also look at some efforts to conceptualize scenes (e.g., Benjamin, Lefebvre, Fischer, Jameson, Bourdieu, Foucault).

2010-2011 Spring

23901/33901 Gender in the Balkans through Literature and Film

(=GNDR 27702/37700,SOSL 27610/37610)

This introductory course examines the poetics of femininity and masculinity in some of the best works of the Balkan region. We contemplate how the experiences of masculinity and femininity are constituted and the issues of socialization related to these modes of being. Topics include the traditional family model, the challenges of modernization and urbanization, the socialist paradigm, and the postsocialist changes. Finally, we consider the relation between gender and nation, especially in the context of the dissolution of Yugoslavia. All work in English.

2010-2011 Winter

24302/34302 Three Generations

(=GRMN 24311/34311,SCTH 34311)

Gottfried Benn, Elizabeth Bishop, Durs Grünbein, Zbigniew Herbert, C. K. Williams are three generations of Modernism in poetry: Benn as one of the grandfathers, Bishop and Herbert as representatives of the middle generation, and C. K. Williams and Grünbein as grandchildren. The idea of the class is to read poems closely and to discuss them in the class. Discussion section arranged for students who are majoring in German. All work in English.

2010-2011 Autumn

24502/34502 Language of Power: Court Culture in Early Modern Europe and Russia

(=RUSS 24501/34501,HIST 23811/33811,GRMN 24511/34511)

Crossing the disciplinary boundaries between social, political, cultural and literary history, as well as the symbolic divide between Russia and Western Europe, the course will explore early modern royal courts as crucial institutions of European culture. Rulers and the elites relied on symbolic resources of literature, philosophy and the arts to secure their growing political authority and broadcast values underpinning the existing social order. From the Renaissance on royal courts increasingly merged into a single an-European sociocultural paradigm, which over centuries framed the political effort of rulers as remote as Louis XIV, King of France, and Peter the Great, Emperor of Russia, as well as creative work of artists, composers and writers as important as Rubens, Molière, Mozart, Goethe, and Derzhavin.Absolutist social values and the modes of their cultural (re)production at the courts of early modern Europe and Russia will be examined drawing on historical sources as well works of art, philosophy and science, but primarily concentrating on literature. Texts in English.

2010-2011 Spring

34700 Poets in Their Context

(=SCTH 34360)

PQ: Open to undergrads with consent of instructor. The idea of this class consists in reading European and US poets – including one of the major modernist Russian poets, Osip Mandelstam, Spanish giant Antonio Machado, Polish poet Czeslaw Milosz and our contemporary, Seamus Heaney from Ireland – in the context of their historic situation. We'll be looking both at the political and cultural context of their writing and try to combine interest in what's absolutely specific for each single writer with the concern for conditions underlying his/her creative endeavor. Students will be asked to actively participate in the class discussions and to write a final paper addressing the issues relevant to the course content. Books: Inger Christensen: Alphabet ; Seamus Heaney: Poems Essays ; August Kleinzahler: Green Sees Things in Waves ; Osip Mandelstam: Poems Essays ; Czeslaw Milosz: Poems The Witness of Poetry ; Don Paterson: The Eyes [Versions of Antonio Machado] ; Tadeusz Rozewicz: New Poems .

2010-2011 Autumn

34800 Mysticism and Modernist Writing. Philosophy, Aesthetics, Politics

(=GRMN 34811,FREN 34811)

This seminar will explore the question of why so many European writers in the 1930s and 1940s (e.g., Robert Musil, Georges Bataille) were fascinated by mysticism. Although they were intensely interested in authors from the mystical tradition (e,g,. Meister Eckhart), they nevertheless did not seek a new kind of spirituality, but a secular form of mysticism, that is, a special kind of 'inner experience'. In this seminar, we will investigate the theory of subjectivity that this kind of experience aims at and will ask how it relates to concepts of society. For not only Bataille devises, in his activities for the Collège de Sociologie, the notion of a sociologie sacre, but also Henri Bergson links mysticism to a renewal of society ( Les deux sources de la morale et de la religion , 1932). We will also consider the more problematic implications of this conjunction, since exponents of Nazi ideology such as Alfred Rosenberg, or writers (temporarily) seduced by it such as Gottfried Benn, refer to mysticism as a form of collective participation.

2010-2011 Spring

34902 Money and Literature

This seminar examines a set of imaginative and economic writings about money, drawn from western and non-western traditions. Topics will include the market and aesthetic values, counterfeiting and realism, coinage and ideology, and the historical emergence of economic genres. Readings will include Aristotle, Smith, Marx, Kurke, Poovey, Goux, Derrida, Sima Qian, Guanzi, Arrighi.

2010-2011 Winter

25102/35102 Problems Around Foucault

(=DVPR 35100,PHIL 21910/31910)

We will read some of Foucault's most important essays and lectures, from all periods of his work, in an attempt to assess the originality and continued significance of his thought in the context of twentieth century European philosophy. We will also look at the work of other philosophers who influenced or were influenced by Foucault, for example: Georges Canguilhem, Gilles Deleuze, Paul Veyne, Pierre Hadot, Ian Hacking, etc. A final section of the course will consider how we can make use of Foucault today, with respect to questions of epistemology, politics, and ethics.

2010-2011 Winter

35600 Judgment and Distinction (Urteilen und Unterscheiden)

(=GRMN 35911)

Modernity has often been interpreted as a 'crisis of distinction' (Krise des Unterscheidens), that is: as a loss of confidence in the ontological validity of human judgement and linguistic distinctions. On the one hand, this crisis resulted in doctrines of decisionism (Carl Schmitt, Heidegger) and constructivist approaches (George Spencer Brown, Niklas Luhmann); on the other hand, theories of undecidability have been flourishing during the last few decades (most prominent: Jacques Derrida, Giorgio Agamben). Between these extreme positions, a new concept of judgment (Urteilskraft) seems to emerge which combines certain elements of Kant's aesthetic judgment with a rethinking of the political space (Jean-François Lyotard, Hannah Arendt). This course will therefore consider judging and distinguishing as elementary forms not only of logical thinking, but also of aesthetic practice and political reasoning. It addresses students of literary studies as well as students of political sciences, and philosophy. Readings will include texts by Immanuel Kant, Friedrich Hölderlin, Friedrich Nietzsche, Martin Heidegger, Hannah Arendt, Jean-Francois Lyotard, Giorgio Agamben, Niklas Luhmann, and others. Readings in German or English or French, discussion in English.

2010-2011 Spring

26701/36701 Marsilio Ficino's On Love

(=FNDL 21103,ITAL 23900/33900)

This course is first of all a close reading of Marsilio Ficino's seminal book On Love (first Latin edition, De amore , 1484; Ficino's own Italian translation, 1544). Ficino's philosophical masterpiece is the foundation of the Renaissance view of love from a Neo-Platonic perspective. It is impossible to overemphasize its influence on European culture. On Love is not just a radically new interpretation of Plato's Symposium . It is the book through which sixteenth- and seventeenth-century Europe read the love experience. This course analyzes its multiple classical sources and its spiritual connotations. During our close reading of Ficino's text, we show how European writers and philosophers appropriated specific parts of this Renaissance masterpiece. In particular, we read extensive excerpts from some important love treatises (e.g., Castiglione's The Courtier [Il cortigiano] , Leone Ebreo's Dialogues on Love , Tullia d'Aragona's On the Infinity of Love ), but we also read selections from a variety of European poets (e.g., Michelangelo's canzoniere , Maurice Scève's Délie , Fray Luis de León's Poesía ). Classes conducted in English.

2010-2011 Winter

37200 The History of Feeling: On Naïve and Sentimental Poetry

(=GRMN 36111)

This seminar is an attempt to understand Schiller's treatise Über naïve und sentimentalische Dichtung (1796). We will endeavor to reconstruct the literary, philosophical, and biographical context within which the thoughts of that treatise formed themselves and to which they responded. In addition to texts by Schiller, we will study writings by Diderot, Mendelssohn, and Kant on the concept of naiveté; literary works by Geßner, Goethe ( Die Leiden des jungen Werthers ; Hermann und Dorothea ), Voss (Homer translation, Luise ); correspondence of Goethe, Schiller, Körner, W. von Humboldt, and others. Key contributions to the interpretation of Schiller's treatise (e.g., Brinkmann, Jauss, Szondi) will be consulted along with contemporary theories of the emotions.

2010-2011 Spring

37300 Aesthetic Modernity: Philosophy and Criticism

(=GRMN 38111,PHIL 50010,SCTH 38111)

This seminar will discuss and evaluate efforts to conceptualize modernism in the arts from the eighteenth century to the present. Modernism is widely thought to challenge traditional notions of aesthetic success (theories of perfection, the beautiful, harmony, etc.) and by doing so to raise large philosophical questions about perception, experience, language and the modern condition itself. Who first understood this massive change in aesthetic practices? Who best understood why it occurred? Is there such a thing as modernist philosophy? Did modernism end? Of what significance is that fact? Readings will include a range of philosophical and critical texts by, among others, Fr. Schlegel, Hegel, Baudelaire, Nietzsche, Heidegger, Cavell, Clark, and Fried.

2010-2011 Autumn

27402/37402 Contemporary Chinese Writers and the Literary Field

(=EALC 28620/38620)

This course explores the ways in which Chinese writers and critics have responded and contributed to the transformations in the Chinese literary field from the 1970s to the present. Drawing on Pierre Bourdieu's theory of the literary field, we discuss notions of autonomy and authorship, concepts of high and popular literature, and writers' attitudes toward commercialization. Texts include poems by Bei Dao and Yang Lian; and fiction by Mo Yan, Wang Shuo, Yu Hua, Han Shaogong, and Chen Ran. Texts in English. Students who read Chinese are encouraged to use Chinese materials.

2010-2011 Spring

38102 Cervantes's Enigmatic Feasts: The Exemplary Novels and Don Quixote, Part II

(=REMS 34301,SPAN 24311/34311)

This course focuses on The Exemplary Novels (1613) and Don Quijote, Part II (1615) from the point of view of calendared feasts. To the recently instituted Gregorian calendar, the novel superimposes at least three other time maps. First, the Julian calendar with its many feasts as depicted in Ovid's Fasti ; second, the celestial movement through the twelve signs of the zodiac as represented by Hercules' twelve labors; and third, the Egyptian lunar calendar that leads to the knight's defeat. This meandering through calendars creates an instability and sense of unease that recalls the changes in mapping that are taking place with the discovery of America and the change to a heliocentric cosmos. The Novelas show an inordinate interest in feasts while, as Don Quixote proceeds, a kind of dilatio takes place, as Don Quixote diverts his route over and over again from his destination (Zaragoza and the feast of St. George). Time then becomes a subjective phenomenon that affects both the reader and the characters. We examine Cervantes's novel through the lenses of Ovid's Fasti and Apuleius' Golden Ass . Maps and paintings of the period are also examined. Classes taught in English. Students in Spanish and REMS read the text in the original language and write their papers in Spanish.

2010-2011 Spring

28401/38401 Comparative Metrics

(=CLAS 38410,CLCV 28410,ENGL 28914/38401,GRMN 28411/38411,SLAV 28502/38502)

Working knowledge of one European language besides English is strongly recommended. This class offers an overview of major European systems of versification, with particular attention to their historical development. We are particularly concerned with Graeco-Roman quantitative metrics, its afterlife, and the evolution of Germanic and Slavic verse. In addition to analyzing the formal properties of verse, we inquire into their relevance for the articulation of poetic genres and, more broadly, the history of literary (and sub-literary) systems.

2010-2011 Spring

38501 Identity, Democracy, and Autobiography: A Comparative Perspective

(=RUSS 36800)

Drawing on the European, Russian and North American writings from the end of the eighteenth to the middle of twentieth centuries, this graduate seminar will examine the emergence of the modern conception of identity and its literary representation through the genre of fictionalized autobiography. We will explore the influences of social mobility, political exile or immigration, and democratic education on the transformation of personal identity in the works by Jean-Jacques Rousseau, Stendhal, Alexander Herzen, Vladimir Nabokov, W.E.B. Du Bois and Ralph Ellison. The readings will also include philosophical works by John Locke, Rousseau, Benjamin Constant, Alexis de Tocqueville, Charles Taylor and Jean-Luc Nancy, which will help us understand the relationship between identity and subjectivity and account for the growing intellectual prestige of identity in the contemporary democratic public sphere. All readings will be available in English. Those who know French and Russian are encouraged to read all works in their original languages. The course is open to advanced undergraduates only by the instructor's permission.

2010-2011 Winter

29100/39100 Renaissance Epic

(= ENGL 16300/36300,RLIT 36300)

A study of classical epic in the Renaissance or Early Modern period. Emphasis will be both on texts and on classical epic theory. We will read Tasso's Jerusalem Delivered , Camões' Lusiads , and Milton's Paradise Lost . A paper will be required and perhaps an examination.

2010-2011 Winter

21202/41202 Decolonizing Drama and Performance in Africa and Beyond

(=CMST 24508/44508,ENGL 22402/44508)

PQ: Third- or fourth-year standing and prior course in either theatre or African studies. Working knowledge of French and/or Spanish is required for Comparative Literature status and recommended, but not required, for other students. This course examines the connections among dramatic writing, theatrical practice, and theoretical reflection on decolonization primarily in Africa and the Caribbean in the twentieth century. Authors (many of whom write theory and theater) may include Aima Aidoo, Fatima Dike, Aime Cesaire, Franz Fanon, Fernandez Retamar, Athol Fugard, Biodun Jeyifo, Were Liking, Mustafa Matura, Jose Marti, Ngugi wa Thiong'o, Kwame Nkrumah, Wole Soyinka, and Derek Walcott. Texts in English, French, and/or Spanish.

2010-2011 Spring

41500 Urban Zones of Modernism and Modernity 1700-1950

(=ENGL 48105)

This geographical history of modernism will track intertwining and clashing forces defining the 20th-century avant-garde through their topographical touchstones. We will examine literary representations of delimited zones summoned in documentary or preservative modes as well as utopian projections and schemes for the metropolis writ large. Occupying the objectives of outsiders and insiders in tandem, we will consider texts not only as representations of urban space, but as inventors of it. We will try to detect the reciprocal interference of public and private interests, work and leisure, fortune and emiseration within the several precincts of our concentration as we ask what new languages and forms were enabled by an urban compression of variegated ethnic and linguistic traditions. Our primary sites of focus will be Paris, Venice, and New York, but we will necessarily (and according to class interests) digress elsewhere. Major readings will be drawn from Georg Simmel, Walter Benjamin, Henri Lefebvre, Raymond Williams, Elias Canetti, and T.J. Clark—and from Baudelaire, Apollinaire, Henry James, Gertrude Stein, Mina Loy, F.T. Marinetti, T.S. Eliot, Ezra Pound, John Dos Passos, and Louis Zukofsky; we will also consider pertinent visual and architectural projects. Readings will be given in English, but students with experience in other languages are encouraged to read primary texts in the original. Two papers and a presentation to the seminar will be required.

2010-2011 Spring

41900 Tales of the Future in Contemporary Chinese Narratives

(=EALC 48701)

The imagination of how life will or might be is central to many definitions of literature that consider it as a form of social practice. In this course we will discuss how diverse dimensions of the future—as hope, anxiety, plan, as possibility or fear of transformation—shape the literary imagination. Our focus will be on Chinese fictional narratives and theories of literature of the 20th century, with particular attention to the periods of transition to and away from socialism, but we will also look at concepts of timeliness and untimeliness in critical and narrative theory elsewhere. Overall, our aim will be to explore how the function and fate of literature has been imagined in relation to other cultural, political, and social practices, an issue that inevitably emerges every time one tries to pin down the problem of Chinese literary modernity itself. In the second part of the course students will be asked to work on their own projects on texts, films, or other media of their choice. Readings may include Liang Qichao, Lu Xun, Mao Zedong, Zhou Yang, Li Tuo, Ge Fei, Mo Yan, E. Bloch, J. Derrida, G. Morson, F. Jameson, M. Bakhtin.

2010-2011 Spring

42201 Recovering Bakhtin

(=RUSS 42201)

Since the 1970s, Mikhail Bakhtin's work has had an enthusiastic reception in the Western academe. In spite of – or, arguably, as a result of – its wide dissemination, it has also suffered much from reductionist readings. In this seminar, we will read Bakhtin's major works, seeking to restore them to the intellectual context of the Russian school of historical poetics. In addition, we will discuss primary texts that provided the impetus for Bakhtin's theories (Petronius, Plutarch, Dostoyevsky). All readings in English.

2010-2011 Spring

22900/42900 Cinema in Africa

(=AFAM 21900,CMST 24201/34201,CRES 24201/34201,ENGL 27600/48601,SOSC 27600)

PQ: Prior college-level course in either African studies or film studies. This course examines cinema in Africa and films produced in Africa. It places cinema in SubSaharan Africa in its social, cultural, and aesthetic contexts ranging from neocolonial to postcolonial, Western to Southern Africa, documentary to fiction, and art cinema to TV. We begin with La Noire de... (1966), a groundbreaking film by the father of African cinema, Ousmane Sembene. We compare this film to a South African film, The Magic Garden (1960), that more closely resembles African American musical film. Other films discussed in the first part of the course include anti-colonial and anti-apartheid films from Lionel Rogosin's Come Back Africa (1959) to Sarah Maldoror's Sambizanga , Ousmane Sembene's Camp de Thiaroye (1984), and Jean Marie Teno's Afrique , Je te Plumerai (1995). We then examine cinematic representations of tensions between urban and rural, traditional and modern life, and the different implications of these tensions for men and women, Western and Southern Africa, in fiction, documentary and ethnographic film.

2010-2011 Winter

26900/46900 Coetzee

(=ENGL 28605/48605,FNDL 26203)

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 read Coetzee's Waiting for the Barbarians , Foe , The Life and Times of Michael K , and Disgrace , and the volume of essays, Giving Offence . We also read Dostoyevsky's Notes from Underground , Yvette Christiaanse's novel, Unconfessed , and Hannah Arendt's Eichmann in Jerusalem . We consider the playtext Malora by Yael Farber. The two films we study are Alain Resnais's groundbreaking Hiroshima Mon Amour and Christopher Nolan's recent psychological thriller, Memento . Theoretical readings include works from Freud, Derrida, and Foucault.

2010-2011 Autumn

50101 Seminar: Ekphrasis on Stage: Images of Power, Piety and Desire in the Early Modern Period

(=SPAN 34302,REMS 34302)

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 Spanish. 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. During the early modern age, writing had a strong visual component. Poets and playwrights utilized the sense of sight since it was the highest of the Platonic senses and a mnemonic key to lead spectators to remember vividly what they had read or heard, long before spectacle plays were in fashion. One important technique for visualization was ekphrasis, the description of an art work within a text. For this purpose, playwrights often turned to the mythological canvases of the Italian Renaissance along with the portraits of great rulers and images of battle. The seminar will examine the uses of art onstage: mnemonic, mimetic, political, religious comic, tragic, lyric and licentious. It will also delve into different forms of ekphrasis from the notional to the dramatic and from the fragmented to the reversed. Although the course will focus on Spanish plays of the early modern period, it will also include dramas by Terence and Tacone; Euripides and Racine. Numerous Italian Renaissance and Spanish Baroque paintings will be discussed.

2010-2011 Autumn

50201 Seminar: Contemporary Critical Theory

(=DVPR 50201)

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 the Divinity Scbool (Philosophy of Religion). 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. This course will examine some of the salient texts of postmodernism. Part of the question of the course will be the status and meaning of post-modern, post-structuralist. The course requires active and informed participation.

2010-2011 Winter

51700 Seeing Madness: Mental Illness and Visual Culture

(=ARTH 48911,CDIN 51700,CMST 57000,ENGL 51305)

This course will ask how the experience of insanity is conveyed and represented. What are the face and look of madness? How does madness make itself visible? How has it been treated as exhibition and spectacle? These questions will be approached while keeping two considerations at the forefront: first, how madness is understood to manifest itself; second, how it is in turn displayed and represented in a number of different (western) cultures. The first of these two considerations engages the history of the concept—the place of madness in medicine and the political-cultural framing of the insane as a legal, social, and clinical category. This includes as well what the conventions of madness are and how they change with the history of medicine as well as of cultural givens. The aim here is not to undertake such a historical account fully. Rather, students will be looking at moments in the history of madness when the idea is redefined or at issue. The second of the considerations for the seminar is the theater of madness—that is, how madness is represented graphically, from drawings to the modern media of photography, painting, cinema, architecture, and literature. Theoretical readings will include Freud, Foucault and Lacan, among other theorists and practitioners. In literature, students will be reading passages from texts such as Don Quixote , Breton's Nadja , Marat/Sade , late Nietzsche, and Hölderlin. Students will explore a number of films (e.g A Beautiful Mind , Vertigo and David and Lisa ), early photographs, drawings and paintings, and blue prints from various eras for the housing of the insane.

2010-2011 Winter

51800 Improvisation as a Way of Life

(=CDIN 50910, MUSI 45511,PHIL 50910)

This seminar will be organized around the idea that the practice of improvisation is not at all limited to the artistic domain, but is a ubiquitous practice of everyday life, a primary method of exchange in any interaction. Improvisation is, in effect, a certain kind of orientation or attitude towards oneself, others, and the world. Combining philosophical, ethnographic, musicological, and technological modes of analysis and creation, this seminar aims at the presentation of new models of intelligibility, agency, expression, and social responsibility that can inform the theory and practice of real-time musical analysis, leading to new and more effective interactive technologies as well.

2010-2011 Autumn

20800 Brecht and Beyond

(=ENGL 24400,CMST 26200,TAPS28435)

PQ: TAPS and/or Hum Core required; no first years. Brecht is indisputably the most influential playwright in the twentieth century. In this course we will explore the range and variety of Brecht's own theatre, from the anarchic plays of the 1920's to the agitprop Lehrstück to the classical parable plays, as well as the works of his heirs in Germany (Heiner Müller, Franz Xaver Kroetz, Peter Weiss), Britain (John Arden, Edward Bond, Caryl Churchill), and sub-Saharan Africa (Soyinka, Ngugi, and various South African theatre practitioners). We will also consider the impact of Brechtian theory on film, from Brecht's own Kuhle Wampe to Jean-Luc Godard.

2011-2012 Autumn

22401 US Latino Literary Intellectual History: Subject to Citizen

(=ENGL 228/42815,CRES 22815,GNDR 22802, LACS 22815)

Reading knowledge of Spanish and French helpful. How does one go from being a subject of the king to becoming a citizen? From where does one acquire the language to think of equality? In the late eighteenth century, many revolutionary Spaniards and Spanish Americans travelled throughout the Atlantic world seeking to make the philosophy of equality a reality and gain independence of the Spanish colonies. They travelled to and from Europe and Spanish America; and on to New Orleans, Charleston, Washington DC, Philadelphia, and New York. Through their voyages, these individuals would bring this new political language of rights to the places they visited, imbibing of this political philosophy by reading and through conversations and discussions. They produced, as well, a plethora of publications and writings that circulated throughout the Atlantic world. Through lecture and discussion, students in this interdisciplinary course learn of these individuals, their circuits of travel, and their desire to create a modern world. Our focus is on the communities, individuals, and texts that were published and circulated in what is today the United States. We begin with the late eighteenth century and work our way through the nineteenth century. Classes conducted in English; most texts in English.

2011-2012 Autumn

24790 Self-Transformation and Political Resistance: Michel Foucault, Pierre Hadot, Primo Levi, Martin Luther King, Jr

(=PHIL 24790)

How should we understand the connections between an ethics of self-transformation and a politics of resistance to established relations of power? How are forms of the self and strategies of power intertwined? We shall examine the philosophical frameworks of Michel Foucault and Pierre Hadot with respect to those questions and then study two particular cases: Primo Levi's account of Auschwitz and Martin Luther King Jr.'s account of the civil rights movement. We will look at the ways in which these two historically specific cases allow us to develop and test the philosophical frameworks we have examined.

2011-2012 Autumn

28711 Nietzsche

(=GRMN 28711)

This course provides, in lectures and discussion sections, an introduction to Nietzsche's major writings from Birth of Tragedy to The Antichrist. Nietzsche's evolving philosophical position as well as his cultural criticism and his literary and music criticism will be examined. Topics include: the tragic, pessimism and affirmation, nihilism, antiquity and modernity, philosophical psychology, the critique of morality, the interpretation of Christianity. Nietzsche's biography, the major influences on his thought, and his impact on twentieth-century culture will also be considered, if only in glimpses.

2011-2012 Autumn

29700 Reading Course

PQ: Consent of instructor and Director of Undergraduate Studies. Students are required to submit the College Reading and Research Course Form. Must be taken for a quality grade. This course does not satisfy distribution requirements for students who are majoring in CMLT unless an exception is made by the Director of Undergraduate Studies.

2011-2012 Autumn

29801 BA Project and Workshop: Comparative Literature

Required of fourth-year students who are majoring in CMLT. This workshop begins in Autumn Quarter and continues through the middle of Spring Quarter. While the BA 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 is assigned in the Spring Quarter, based partly on participation in the workshop and partly on the quality of the BA paper. Attendance at each class section required.

2011-2012 Autumn

22504 Money and Literature

(GNSE 22504)

This course explores a set of imaginative, anthropological, and economic writings about money.  Topics will include economic rhetoric and genres, market values, housework, and ancient and modern economies.  We will read Gide’s The Counterfeiters, Adiga’s White Tiger, biographies of coins, Chinese economic dialogues, and watch an episode of Suze Orman’s Money Class. Critical readings will include Mauss, Simmel, Marx, Goux, Rubin, Spivak.

2011-2012 Spring

26601 Hamlet and Critical Methods

(=ENGL 16711,FNDL 22205)

Shakespeare's Hamlet has probably inspired the most criticism of any play in world literature, and it has certainly inspired some of the greatest criticism. This course explores the goals, presuppositions, strengths, and limitations of different kinds of scholarship and criticism by focusing upon the variety of approaches that have been (or in some cases, could be) applied to Shakespeare's play. The course will focus on modern editorial theory and practice; classical and neoclassical discussions of mimesis, plot, and theatrical affect; Romantic, psychoanalytic, and postmodern discussions of Hamlet as character; recent literary historical discussions of sources and genre; new critical, new historicist, and feminist analyses of the play's imagined world; as well as performances and literary adaptations of Hamlet conceived of as interpretations of the play.

2011-2012 Spring

29700 Reading Course

PQ: Consent of instructor and Director of Undergraduate Studies. Students are required to submit the College Reading and Research Course Form. Must be taken for a quality grade. This course does not satisfy distribution requirements for students who are majoring in CMLT unless an exception is made by the Director of Undergraduate Studies.

2011-2012 Spring

29801 BA Project and Workshop: Comparative Literature

Required of fourth-year students who are majoring in CMLT. This workshop begins in Autumn Quarter and continues through the middle of Spring Quarter. While the BA 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 is assigned in the Spring Quarter, based partly on participation in the workshop and partly on the quality of the BA paper. Attendance at each class section required.

2011-2012 Spring

21800 Fantasy and Science Fiction

(=ENGL 20900,RLST 28301)

This course will concentrate on works of the “classic” period (1930s-60s). It will, however, begin with representative authors from the nineteenth century like Jules Verne and H. Rider Haggard, as well as some from the early twentieth century like David Lindsay's A Voyage to Arcturus and H. P. Lovecraft's Mountains of Madness. Worth special attention will be authors like C. S. Lewis and Ursula LeGuin who worked in both genres at a time when they were often contrasted. The two major texts which will be discussed will be one from each genre, Tolkien's Lord of the Rings and Herbert's Dune. Theory will be historical, that held by the authors or applied to their stories within the period. Most of the texts we will read come from the Anglo-American tradition with some significant exceptions like short works by Kafka and Borges.

2011-2012 Winter

29700 Reading Course

PQ: Consent of instructor and Director of Undergraduate Studies. Students are required to submit the College Reading and Research Course Form. Must be taken for a quality grade. This course does not satisfy distribution requirements for students who are majoring in CMLT unless an exception is made by the Director of Undergraduate Studies.

2011-2012 Winter

29801 BA Project and Workshop: Comparative Literature

Required of fourth-year students who are majoring in CMLT. This workshop begins in Autumn Quarter and continues through the middle of Spring Quarter. While the BA 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 is assigned in the Spring Quarter, based partly on participation in the workshop and partly on the quality of the BA paper. Attendance at each class section required.

2011-2012 Winter

22504 Chinese Economies

(EALC 22504)

Early twentieth century Chinese asked whether the modern term “economy” could be usefully translated into the traditional Chinese context.  To revisit this question, this course will examine the texts that they and historians since have taken as the main sources of early Chinese economic thought and history.  These include selections from Mencius, Shiji, Hanshu, Guanzi, Debate on Salt and Iron, as well as Precepts for my Daughters.  We will read these in light of traditional commentaries and modern anthropological and literary approaches to economic writing and practice, including Mauss, Polanyi, Goux, Bourdieu, Bray, Liu.  Topics will include genre, rhetoric, and gender.  We will ask how the early Chinese instance might affirm or revise the comparative models we engage.  Some reading knowledge of classical Chinese required.

2011-2012 Spring

20361/30361 Samak-e 'Ayyar

(=PERS 30361,SALC 20604/30604)

PQ: Persian 20103 or equivalent. Introduction to the popular Persian romance of the 12th century, Samak-e 'ayyar, featuring a close reading of selected passages. Questions of genre; concepts of masculinity; chivalry and the character of the 'ayyar; the relationship of Samak to similar works in the Islamicate literatures as well as in the European traditions; oral story-telling and the performance context; folklore motifs; etc.

2011-2012 Autumn

20500/30500 History and Theory of Drama I

(=CLAS 31200,CLCV 21200,ENGL 13800/31000,TAPS 28400)

May be taken in sequence with CMLT 20600/30600 or individually. This course meets the general education requirement in the dramatic, musical, and visual arts. 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, 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.

2011-2012 Autumn

20600/30600 History and Theory of Drama II

(=ENGL 13800/31100,TAPS 28401)

This course meets the general education requirement in the dramatic, musical, and visual arts. 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 (i.e., Molière, Goldsmith, Ibsen, Chekhov, Strindberg, Wilde, Shaw, Brecht, Beckett, Stoppard). Attention is also paid to theorists of the drama (e.g., Stanislavsky, Artaud, Grotowski). The goal is not to develop acting skill but, rather, 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 students. End-of-week workshops, in which individual scenes are read aloud dramatically and discussed, are optional but highly recommended.

2011-2012 Winter

22400/32400 History of International Cinema I: Silent Era

(=ARTH 28500/38500,ARTV 26500,CMST 28500/48500,ENGL 29300/47800,MAPH 33600)

PQ: Prior or concurrent enrollment in CMST 10100. This is the first part of a two-quarter course. Taking these courses in sequence is strongly recommended but not required. This course introduces what was singular about the art and craft of silent film. Its general outline is chronological. We also discuss main national schools and international trends of filmmaking.

2011-2012 Autumn

22500/32500 History of International Cinema II: Sound Era to 1960

(=ARTH 28600/38600,ARTV 26600,CMST 28600/48600,ENGL 29600/48900,MAPH 33700)

PQ: Prior or current registration in CMST 10100 required; CMLT 22400/32400 strongly recommended. The center of this course is film style, from the classical scene breakdown to the introduction of deep focus, stylistic experimentation, and technical innovation (sound, wide screen, location shooting). The development of a film culture is also discussed. Texts include Thompson and Bordwell's Film History: An Introduction ; and works by Bazin, Belton, Sitney, and Godard. Screenings include films by Hitchcock, Welles, Rossellini, Bresson, Ozu, Antonioni, and Renoir.

2011-2012 Spring

22601/32601 Cinema from the Balkans

(=SOSL 27600/37600)

This course is designed as an overview of major cinematic works from Bulgaria, Albania, Greece, Rumania, former Yugoslavia and Turkey. While the main criterion for selection is the artistic quality of the work, the main issues under consideration are those of identity, gender, the poignant relation with the “Western World,” memories of conflict and violence, and socialism and its disintegration and subsequent emigration. We compare the conceptual categories through which these films make sense of the world, especially the sense of humor with which they come to terms with that world. Directors whose work we examine include Vulchanov and Andonova (Bulgaria); Kusturica, Makavejev, and Grlic (Former Yugoslavia); Guney (Turkey); Boulmetis (Greece); and Manchevski (Macedonia).

2011-2012 Autumn

23201/33201 Returning the Gaze: The Balkans and Western Europe

(=NEHC 20885/30885,SOSL 27200/37200)

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 .

2011-2012 Autumn

23301/33301 Balkan Folklore

(=NEHC 20568/30568,SOSL 26800/36800)

This course is an overview of Balkan folklore from ethnographic, 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, help us understand folk tradition as a dynamic process. We also consider the function of different folklore genres in the imagining and maintenance of community and the socialization of the individual. We also experience this living tradition first hand through our visit to the classes and rehearsals of the Chicago-based ensemble “Balkanske igre”.

2011-2012 Winter

23401/33401 The Burden of History: A Nation and Its Lost Paradise

(=NEHC 20573/30573,SOSL 27300/37300)

This course begins by defining the nation both historically and conceptually, with attention to Romantic nationalism and its flourishing in Southeastern Europe. We then look at the narrative of original wholeness, loss, and redemption through which Balkan countries retell their Ottoman past. With the help of Freud's analysis of masochistic desire and Å_iÅ_ek's theory of the subject as constituted by trauma, we contemplate the national fixation on the trauma of loss and the dynamic between victimhood and sublimity. The figure of the Janissary highlights the significance of the other in the definition of the self. Some possible texts are Petar NjegoÅ¡'s Mountain Wreath ; Ismail Kadare's The Castle ; and Anton Donchev's Time of Parting .

2011-2012 Winter

33412 On Acquaintance

(=PORT 33412,SCTH 33412)

The poet Philip Larkin once stated: “I have never been to America, nor to anywhere else, for that matter.” Unlike him, most people believe that there are advantages to going to places, witnessing events, or meeting people. The topic occurs often in matters of art, philosophy, anthropology, and, not least, history: is, for instance, acquaintance required for knowledge or understanding? Is acquaintance required by truth? The class will mainly discuss three very different books that will help us describe the problem: Claude Lévi-Strauss's Tristes tropiques (an anthropological memoir of a series of travels in South and Central America and India), Marie Vassiltchikov's Berlin Diaries 1940-1945 (a description of the fall of the Third Reich from the viewpoint of a minor clerk in the German Foreign Office, with a double life), and Céleste Albaret's Monsieur Proust (a memoir of the novelist Marcel Proust by his housekeeper). All texts will be read in English.

2011-2012 Spring

34370 Great Poems

(=SCTH 34370)

This class has a simple premise: to read closely poems which offer an interesting form and a rich and complex content (if these two can be separated). To read great poems. What's expected here is an intellectual detective work. Among the poets there will be representatives of different generations of literary Modernism: Guillaume Appollinaire, Gottfried Benn, Elizabeth Bishop, Paul Celan, Zbigniew Herbert, Paul Valery, C.K. Williams. Technically speaking, we'll only read one or two poems each week. Students will be required to participate actively in the conversations and to write a final paper.

2011-2012 Autumn

34380 Measuring the World: Poetry as a Magnetic Compass

(=SCTH 34380)

The idea of the class is to read attentively selected poems by five distinguished poets representing five cultures and languages: English, Russian, German, Modern Greek and Polish: Philip Larkin, Joseph Brodsky, Hugo von Hofmannsthal, C.P. Cavafy and Wislawa Szymborska. These five poets are different and yet their work can be put on the same map - the map of the European Modernism. We'll read and discuss these poems; students will be required to participate actively in the conversations and to write a final paper. Undergraduates can attend the class with my consent.

2011-2012 Autumn

25900/35900 Medieval Epic

(=ENGL 15800,RLST 26308)

We will study a variety of heroic literature, including Beowulf, The Volsunga Saga, The Song of Roland, The Purgatorio, and the Alliterative Morte D'Arthur. A paper will be required, and there may be an oral examination.

2011-2012 Spring

35912 Euripides, Bacchae

(SCTH 35912)

Euripides' Bacchae was probably the last play Euripides finished and is certainly one of the latest plays of the three great 5th century Athenian tragedians. Unusually among Greek tragedies, it takes as its subject a myth about the god of tragedy himself, Dionysus; and explores the relations between city and cult, rationality and religious fervor, man and woman, among other issues; it has always played a central role in interpretations of Euripides and of Greek tragedy in general. The seminar will work through the text closely, examining its philological problems and the history of scholarship but also considering its literary, religious, political, anthropological, and other dimensions. Some attention will also be given to the reception of the play in art and literature and to modern stagings and films. While knowledge of ancient Greek is not indispensable, students planning to take the course who do not know Greek should get in touch with the professor beforehand.

2011-2012 Winter

35913 Walter Benjamin

(SCTH 35913)

Walter Benjamin is not recognized as one of the most  seminal thinkers of the 20th century and has proved very influential in a number of disciplines. The seminar will provide a survey across his whole career and through the variety of fields in which he wrote, placing the emphasis on his literary criticism but also including discussion of his writings in philosophy, political thought, religion, autobiography, and other areas. Knowledge of German is not indispensable but would be welcome. Open to ug by consent.

2011-2012 Winter

36300 The Trans-Pyrenees Baroque: Seventeenth-Century Theatre in France and Spain

(=REMS 34600,SPAN 34600,FREN 34600,TAPS XXXXX)

The seventeenth century was the age of theatre in both France and Spain. This course will explore both the common themes and the diverging practices of the two national stages. Among the topics to be examined will be baroque theatricality and meta-theatricality, the social and moral uses of comedy, and competing theories of drama. PQ: Strong reading knowledge of either French or Spanish required. Course will be conducted in English; students registering for French or Spanish credit will write papers in the relevant language. Readings will be offered in the original language and in English.

2011-2012 Spring

26901/36901 Orality, Literature and Popular Culture of Afghanistan and Pakistan

(SALC 26901/36901)

This course will examine some of the literary traditions emerging out of modern Afghanistan and Pakistan focusing on different regional representations. In addition we will explore popular culture through film and the arts. Through an examination of Persian, Balochi, Sindhi, Pashto, Urdu, Punjabi short stories, poems, and novels we will explore the influences of regional languages on each other and examine the contemporary place of regional languages and literatures in a world of national and global literatures. How do the different regional literary traditions fit in with the idea of a national literature and a national language? How have the modern nation states of Pakistan and Afghanistan attempted to promote language, literature and particular cultures? What is the historical connection between the state and the arts in the region? What role does literature and popular culture play in the consolidation of regional, national and global identities? We will cover a wide range of materials in this course, ranging from oral and literary narratives of resistance, to Sufism, to the short story and novel, to truck art, cinematic currents in the region and global representations of the region in film. We will combine primary literary readings in translation (or in the original languages for those with the linguistic skills) with historical and/or theoretical readings and viewing of films. One of the main themes of this course will be the role of literature and the arts in making available to us a wide range of emotions dealing with tragedy, war, displacement, political instability, and regional, and national identities.

2011-2012 Winter

28101/38101 Don Quixote

(=RLLT 34202,REMS 34202,FNDL 21211,SCTH 38250,SPAN 24202/34202)

PQ: For Spanish credit SPAN 21700. The course will provide a close reading of Cervantes' Don Quixote and discuss its links with Renaissance art and Early Modern narrative genres. On the one hand, Don Quixote 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 Quixote exhibits a desire for Italy through the utilization of Renaissance art. Beneath the dusty roads of La Mancha and within Don Quixote's chivalric fantasies, the careful reader will come to appreciate glimpses of images with Italian designs. The course will be taught in English. The course format would be alternating lectures by two faculty members on Mondays and Wednesdays. Fridays are devoted to the discussion of the materials presented on MW.

2011-2012 Winter

41100 'Other-speech' and 'Visible words': Allegory, the allegorical, and allegoresis before modernity

(=CDIN 41100,ARTH 48933,FREN 41112)

Many key readings will be in French. This seminar will bring two disciplinary lenses to bear on the problem of allegory before modernity: literary history and art history. We will consider a range of visual and textual practices in order to explore the limits, even failures, of certain disciplinary accounts of allegory and allegoresis. Our focus will be on visual and textual evidence before modernity, but the questions and problems examined in the seminar will bear on allegory and allegoresis more broadly. By attending to the specific modes of analysis and insights developed within each discipline, the seminar will permit us to develop a more critical and productive understanding of how different disciplinary habits of thought have shaped our perception of allegory and allegoresis as practices. Seminar meetings will put into dialogue visual and textual historical works, as well as landmark critical accounts of allegory and allegoresis. PQ: Many key readings will be in French.

2011-2012 Winter

41711 Fashion and Modernity

(=GRMN 41712,FREN 41712,GNDR 41711)

The relation between fashion and modernity has always been taken for granted. Indeed, it is guaranteed in the very etymology of the French and German words “mode” and “modernité” (Mode und Moderne). Yet, on closer inspection, there is a blind spot in this relation in that fashion seems rather to be the other of modernity. The modern discourse of fashion testifies to the ambivalences and paradoxes in this relation. From the beginning until now, it is strangely split: there is fashion and fashion. Properly speaking, men's fashion is not really fashionable. The perfectly functional suit without superfluous adornment is, in its world-wide constancy through the centuries, almost invariably classical. Its staggering universal success is due to the fact that it is the ideal modern dress: beautiful, because functional. Women's fashion, on the contrary, is a remnant of the old, effeminate aristocracy — a frivolous frill, an all-in-all dysfunctional ornament, badly in need of thorough modernization. The “new woman“ is born in agonizing pain and perpetual fallbacks: while Chanel almost lead us toward a functional feminine form, Dior's new look was a setback. It brought back the unhealthy, restrictive corset and offered a slap in the face to the modern aesthetic dogma of “form follows function”. Fashion therefore seems to be the locus of a strange intimation of the political set against the common politics of modernity. The course will center around this blind spot between fashion and modernity and the new gendering of fashion in the bourgeois, post-feudal era. Texts by Jean Jacques Rousseau, Barbey d'Aurevilly, Charles Baudelaire, Heinrich Heine, Georg Simmel, René König, Alfred Loos, Roland Barthes, Anne Hollander. There will be a reader for the students.

2011-2012 Spring

47200 Cavell on Literature

(=GRMN 47211,PHIL 47211)

This course is a successor course to the seiminar on Cavell's The Claim of Reason offered in Fall Quarter 2011-2012 by Prof. James Conant (Philosophy). Students may participate in this seminar, however, without having taken the Fall seminar. The aim of this seminar is to delineate and assess Cavell's contributions to literary studies. In particular, we shall consider: 1) Cavell's theory of interpretation and criticism (mainly in terms of the essays in Must We Mean What We Say); 2) his theory of genre (Pursuits of Happiness; Contesting Tears); his theory of tragedy (essay on King Lear in Must We Mean What We Say) and, more generally, his reading of Shakespeare (Disowining Knowledge); his interpretation of Romanticism, esp. of Emerson and Thoreau.

2011-2012 Winter

50102 Theories of the Novel

(=ENGL 57102)

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. 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. This course explores some of the fundamental conceptual issues raised by novels: in what way do plot, character, and authorial intention function in the novel, as opposed to other genres? How are novels formally unified (if they are)? What special problems are associated with beginnings and endings of novels? How do such basic features as titles and chapter divisions contribute to novelistic meanings? What are the ideological presuppositions — about gender, race, class, but also about the nature of social reality, of historicity, and of modernity -- inherent in a novelistic view? What ethical practices and structures of affect do novels encourage? Readings include Goethe, The Sorrows of Young Werther; Austen, Pride and Prejudice; Flaubert, L'Education Sentimentale; Salih, Season of Migration to the North. Critics covered include Lukacs, Bakhtin, Watt, Jameson, McKeon, D.A. Miller, Woloch, Moretti, and others.

2011-2012 Autumn

53600 Post-Classical Goethe

(=GRMN 53611)

This seminar will consider Goethe's work after 1805 with the aim of delineating the characteristics of Goethe's post-classical style and thought. One could also say: Goethe's modernity. It has become a commonplace in the study of Goethe to refer to the allegorical nature of his late works. We shall contest this reading. 1805, the year of Schiller's death, is taken as the starting point of a reassessment of the nature of artistic activity that finds expression in Goethe's poetic works as well as in his theoretical and critical writings. Among the texts to be discussed: the Winckelmann essay, Pandora, Wahlverwandtschaften, Wilhelm Meisters Wanderjahre, essays from Kunst und Altertum, selected scientific writings.

2011-2012 Autumn

24712 Masterpieces of Scandinavian Literature

(NORW 24712,GRMN 24712)

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.

2012-2013 Autumn

25001 Foucault: History of Sexuality

(PHIL 24800 (=GNSE 23100,HIPS 24300,FNDL 22001))

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.

2012-2013 Autumn

25004 Sea Fictions: Reading Transnationally

(ENGL 24311)

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.

2012-2013 Autumn

26400 Introduction to the Renaissance

(ITAL 25400)

The Renaissance, which first and foremost flourished in Italy, founded our modern concept of the self. The way we see ourselves, the values we cherish, derive from the Renaissance. Modernity is a product of the Renaissance. This course emphasizes the importance of introspection in Renaissance culture, poetry, and philosophy. The books I have selected have a strong autobiographical element. However, they also illuminate how the Renaissance theorizes the relationship between the individual and society. We will read, in Italian, passages from major Italian texts in prose, such as Castiglione's Il cortigiano, Machiavelli's Discorsi, Campanella's Citta' del Sole, and poetry by Michelangelo, Monsignor della Casa, and numerous women poets, such as Veronica Franco, Vittoria Colonna, and Veronica Gambara. Taught in Italian.

2012-2013 Autumn

28610 Major Works of Goethe

(GRMN 28600)

This course is an intensive study of selected works (i.e., poetry, drama, fiction, essays) by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe. Students will become acquainted with one of the major figures in the history of European culture. Works to be considered include: Faust I, The Sorrows of Young Werther, Novelle, Farbenlehre (some appropriately excerpted). The seminar will also explore Goethe's life and times. All works to be read in German. Discussions in German.

2012-2013 Autumn

28900 Health Care and the Limits of State Action

(BPRO 28600)

Epidemic disease is a challenge on many levels, and increasingly characteristic of our interlinked, post-statist, unequal world. Through a series of readings in anthropology, sociology, ethics, medicine, and political science, we will attempt to reach an understanding of this crisis of both epidemiological technique and state legitimacy, and to sketch out options.

2012-2013 Autumn

20663 Fictional Minds: The Representation of Consciousness in the European Novel

(SCTH 20663,ENGL 20663)

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.

2012-2013 Spring

21906 Merleau-Ponty's Phenomenology of Perception

(FNDL 21906)

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.

2012-2013 Spring

25005 Specificity/Interdisciplinarity: Myths of Orpheus

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. 

2012-2013 Spring

25303 Approaching Infinity: A History of Imaginative Attempts

(HIPS 25303,HIST 25011)

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

2012-2013 Spring

26601 Hamlet and Critical Methods

(ENGL 16711,FNDL 22205)

Shakespeare's Hamlet has probably inspired the most criticism of any play in world literature, and it has certainly inspired some of the greatest criticism. This course explores the goals, presuppositions, strengths, and limitations of different kinds of scholarship and criticism by focusing upon the variety of approaches that have been (or in some cases, could be) applied to Shakespeare's play. The course will focus on modern editorial theory and practice; classical and neoclassical discussions of mimesis, plot, and theatrical affect; Romantic, psychoanalytic, and postmodern discussions of Hamlet as character; recent literary historical discussions of sources and genre; new critical, new historicist, and feminist analyses of the play's imagined world; as well as performances and literary adaptations of Hamlet conceived of as interpretations of the play. Students will write several short response papers to the assigned readings as well as a longer paper analyzing and/or applying different critical approaches to Hamlet.

2012-2013 Spring

29702 Introduction to Comparative Literature II: Theory & Practice of the Literary Avant-Garde

This course takes a comparative approach to studying the innovations and legacy of the major European and American avant-garde movements, from Futurism and Surrealism through the postwar neo-avant-gardes to contemporary groupings such as L=A=N=G=U=A=G=E. We will consider major theory, poetry, and prose texts by writers such as Mayakovsky, Bely, Marinetti, Breton, Huidobro, O’Hara, Sanguineti, Roubaud, Perec, and Cortazar. Foreign language texts will be read in translation, though knowledge of at least one of the original languages (Russian, Italian, French, or Spanish) is preferred. 

2012-2013 Spring

23301 Balkan Folklore

(SOSL 26800)

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.

2012-2013 Winter

23401 The Burden of History: A Nation and its Lost Paradise

(SOSL 27300)

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).

2012-2013 Winter

24408 Before and After Beckett: Theater and Theory

(ENGL 24402)

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.

2012-2013 Winter

29701 Introduction to Comparative Literature I: Problems, Methods, Precedents

As the study of relations among the world's literary and other expressive,traditions, comparative literature confronts a host of questions. What do,works from different times and places have in common? How can we meaningfully assess their differences? How do we account for systematic and extra-systemic features of literature? Is translation ever adequate? This course offers consideration of these and related issues through influential critical examples. This course is the first of a two-quarter sequence required for all majors in Comparative Literature.

2012-2013 Winter

34409/24409 Modern Rewritings of the Gospel Narratives

(GRMN 24413,GRMN 34413,RLST 28809,RLIT 34400,SCTH 34009)

This interdisciplinary course focuses on the literary dimension of the gospels and on their artistic reception in modern culture. Starting from a presentation of narrative theory, it asks whether religious and secular narratives differ in structure, and illuminates narrative conventions of different media and genres. Both thematic aspects (what aspects of the gospels are selected for development in modern adaptations?) and features of presentation (how do different media and styles transform similar content?) will be considered. Principal works include Johann Sebastian Bach, The Passion According to St. Matthew (1720); Ernest Renan, The Life of Jesus (1865); Nikos Kazantzákis, The Last Temptation of Christ (1955); Pasolini, The Gospel According to Matthew (1964); José Saramago, The Gospel According to Jesus Christ (1991); Norman Mailer, The Gospel According to the Son (1997); and Monty Python, Life of Brian (1979). Secondary readings include Mieke Bal, Narratology, and Bultmann, History of the Synoptic Tradition.

2012-2013 Spring

30202 Mimesis

(CLAS 39200,EALC 30100)

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.

2012-2013 Winter

20360/30360 Eden to Eliot, J.C. to Jay-Z: The Bible in Western Culture

(JWSC 20006,NEHC 20406)

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.

2012-2013 Autumn

20401/30401 Jewish Thought and Literature III: Biblical Voices in Modern Hebrew Literature

(JWSC 20006,NEHC 20406,NEHC 30406,RLST 20406)

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.

2012-2013 Spring

30551 History and Modern Arabic Literature

(ARAB 30551)

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.

2012-2013 Spring

20906/30906 The Arab Israeli Conflict in Literature and Film

(NEHC 20906/30906; HIST 26004/36004; JWSC 25903)

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.

2012-2013 Autumn

31600 Marxism and Modern Culture

(ENGL 32300)

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.

2012-2013 Winter

22201/32201 Magic Realist and Fantastic Writings from the Balkans

(SOSL 27400/37400)

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.

2012-2013 Spring

22301/32301 War & Peace

(RUSS 22302 (=RUSS 32302,ENGL 28912,ENGL 32302,FNDL 27103,HIST 23704))

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

2012-2013 Autumn

23201/33201 Returning the Gaze: Balkans & Western Europe

(NEHC 20885/30885)

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.

2012-2013 Autumn

23502/33502 Mikhail Bakhtin and Yurii Lotman: Polyphony to Semiosphere

(RUSS 23501/33501)

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.

2012-2013 Winter

34270 Ideas of Lyric

(MAPH 34270,ENGL 24270,ENGL 34270)

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.

2012-2013 Spring

34381 Living Poetry

(SCTH 34381)
2012-2013 Autumn

24401/34401 Beautiful Souls, Adventurers and Rogues: The European 18th Century Novel

(FREN 25301/35301; SCTH 38240)

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.  

2012-2013 Winter

34503 Russian Modernist Prose

(RUSS 34503)

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. 

2012-2013 Spring

24713/34713 When Characters Meet Their Authors: Frontiers of Fiction

(FREN 24713/34713)

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).

2012-2013 Spring

24903/34903 Greece/China

(CLCV 27612,CLAS 37612,EALC 24901,EALC 34901)

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.

2012-2013 Spring

25013/35013 Plato on Poets

(PORT 25013/35013,SCTH 30612)
2012-2013 Spring

25703/35703 Unhappiness

(SCTH 35703,SCTH 25703,PHIL 21402,PHIL 31402,)

"Nothing is funnier then unhappiness" says Nelly in Beckett's Endgame. We shall seek to distinguish between unhappiness, as the subject of poetic works, from unhappiness as it is understood by philosophy, which, I would argue, is precisely as funny as nothing. We shall discuss some famous unhappy families. A Greek tragedy (Sophocles: Oedipus Tyrannus), a Renaissance tragedy (Shakespeare, Hamlet), a modern theater of the absurd (Beckett: Endgame).

2012-2013 Spring

35902 Virgil, The Aeneid

(SCTH 35902)

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

2012-2013 Winter

35903 Sophocles, Oedipus at Colonus

(SCTH 35901,GREK 40112)

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.

2012-2013 Winter

26500/36500 Renaissance Romance

(RLIT 52100)
2012-2013 Autumn

26902/36902 Strangers to Ourselves: Émigré Literature and Film from Russia and South Eastern Europe

(SOSL 26900 (=SOSL 36900,RUSS 26900,RUSS 36900))

“Life is more important than the forms in which it is lived,” wrote Ivo Andric, the 1961 Nobel Prize winner from Yugoslavia, in a novel about cultural continuity and change. Emigration involves, among other things, the mastery of another language, the back and forth between familiar and unfamiliar cultures, the creation of new dimensions of one’s identity. In this course, we will examine the painful processes of forging of hybrid cultural selves through literary works through which Russian and South East European writers seek to forge new meanings and selves from the nostalgia, the anger, the feeling of homelessness, and the exhilarating sense of weightlessness.

2012-2013 Autumn

27000/37001 Historicizing Desire

(EALC 27410/37410,CLCV 27706,GNSE 28001)

This course examines conceptions of desire in ancient China and ancient Greece through an array of early philosophical, literary, historical, legal, and medical texts. We will explore the broader cultural background of the two ancient periods, and engage with theoretical debates on the history of sexuality, feminist and queer studies, and East/West studies.

2012-2013 Spring

38513 Poetic Force

(GRMN 28513/38513)

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.

2012-2013 Spring

28601/38601 Fiction, Ideals, and Norms

(FREN 28600/38600,SCTH 38211)

The course will discuss the ways in which fiction imagines a multitude of individual cases meant to incite reflection on moral practices.  The topics will include: the distance between the “I” and its life, the birth of moral responsibility, and the role of affection and gratitude.  We will read philosophical texts by Elisabeth Anscombe, Charles Taylor, Robert Pippin, Hans Joas, Charles Larmore, and Candace Vogler, and literary texts by Shakespeare, Balzac, Theodor Fontane, Henry James, Carson McCullers, and Sandor Marai.  

2012-2013 Spring

29100/39100 Renaissance Epic

(RLIT 36300)
2012-2013 Winter

29116/39116 Colonial Spanish American Theatre: Cuzco and Lima

(LACS 29116,LACS 39116,SPAN 29116,SPAN 39116,)

This seminar is devoted to a comparative study of the development of theater in the two major cities of the Viceroyalty of Peru: Lima and Cuzco in the seventeenth and early eighteenth centuries. Although the starting point is the performance of works written in Spain, during this period several Creole writers wrote a significant set of plays in both cities. Through these plays, the local letrado elite participate actively in the colonial project either appropriating dominant models or redefining them. The result is a theatrical corpus that, although in formal terms seems merely to elaborate on peninsular models, it also reveals a complex range of linguistic and cultural relationships, which are characteristic of the colonial world: comedias marianas (comedies devoted to Virgin Mary) o autos sacramentales (sacramental plays) written in Quechua, dramas rewriting the events of the conquest as they were told by the chroniclers, courtly plays that adapt or adjust the parameters of the opera or French tragedy. From this perspective, the seminar will examine a set of representative authors (Juan de Espinosa Medrano, Gabriel Centeno de Osma, Lorenzo de las Llamosas, Pedro de Peralta Barnuevo and Francisco del Castillo). Spanish texts will be read in the original language and Quechua texts in Spanish translation. Those students taking the course for Ph.D or Spanish credit must complete all assignments in Spanish.  Those taking the course from other departments have the option of completing assignments in either English or Spanish.

2012-2013 Spring

39601 Historiography, Literature, Archaeology

(EALC 37460)

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.

2012-2013 Winter

40100 Islamic Love Poetry

(ISLM 40100,NEHC 40600,RLIT 40300)

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.

2012-2013 Spring

40413 Death and the Afterlife

(GRMN 40413,SCTH 40413)

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. 

2012-2013 Spring

40500 Brechtian Representations: Theatre, Theory, Cinema

(CMST 46200,ENGL 44500,GRMN 47200)

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)

2012-2013 Spring

40600 Performance Theory

(ENGL 593XX; CMST XXXXX)

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. 

2012-2013 Spring

41612 Seminar. Constructing Oedipus: Performance and Adaptation

(GREK 41612)

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. 

2012-2013 Spring

41701 Poetics of Dislocation

(ENGL 43706)

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.

2012-2013 Spring

42418 Theories of the Novel

(ENGL 42418)

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.

2012-2013 Winter

42801 Pindar: Ritual, Poetics, Monuments

(CLAS 44912,CDIN 44912,ARTH 43340)

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).

2012-2013 Spring

43002 The Face on Film

(CMST 63002,ARTH 43002)

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.

2012-2013 Spring

43312 Philosophy and the Poetics of Presence in Postwar France

(CDIN 43312 (=CLAS 43312,HIST 66503,SCTH 43312)

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.

2012-2013 Autumn

44212 Seminar: Phaedrus

(CLAS 44212,GREK 44212,LATN 44212)

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.

2012-2013 Spring

44620 Problems in International Cultural Policy

(LAWS 94704,PLSC 44620,ENGL 44620,PPHA 40410)

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.

2012-2013 Spring

46303 Postcolonial Americas

(ENGL 46303)

MAPH SEMINARPostcolonial AmericasDuring 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.

2012-2013 Autumn

46902 South Asia from the Peripheries: Afghanistan, Pakistan, and the Transnational

(SALC 46902)

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.  

2012-2013 Autumn

50103 Narratology: Classical Models and New Directions

(GRMN 40212)

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.

2012-2013 Autumn

50202 Seminar: Historicism and the Comparative Method

(SLAV 50202,GRMN 40213)

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.

2012-2013 Winter

50511 Foucault: Self, Government, and Regimes of Truth

(PHIL 50211,DVPR 50211)

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.

2012-2013 Autumn

25001 Foucault: History of Sexuality

(PHIL 24800,GNSE 23100,HIPS 24300,FNDL 22001)

PQ: One prior philosophy course is strongly recommended. 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. 

2013-2014 Autumn

29701 Introduction to Comparative Literature I: Problems, Methods, Precedents

As the study of relations among the world's literary and other expressive,traditions, comparative literature confronts a host of questions. What do,works from different times and places have in common? How can we meaningfully assess their differences? How do we account for systematic and extra-systemic features of literature? Is translation ever adequate? This course offers consideration of these and related issues through influential critical examples. This course is the first of a two-quarter sequence required for all majors in Comparative Literature.

2013-2014 Autumn

24250 Crowds in fin de siècle Modernism

(MAPH 34250)

The increasing urbanization of late 19th and early 20th century Europe witnessed the advent of a comparatively novel social phenomenon and cultural trope: the crowd. Crowds have been represented as alienating, faceless monstrosities and as liberatingly anonymous environments of self-realization, as manipulable and as bullying. The crowd is figured as a hotbed of rumor, irrationality, madness, sedition, and communicable disease, but also as the site of transcendent super-personal experience, invention, historical progress, and the groundspring of political legitimacy. Crowds have a (statistical, social, psychological) life of their own which confronts and contrasts with the life of the individual. They confirm the flâneur in his ironic distance and insulated subjectivity even as the phenomenology of “merging with” or “melting into” the crowd challenges prevailing notions of individual identity and personal responsibility. This class will examine a variety of literary and visual representations of the crowded turn-of-the-century European metropolis in conjunction with contemporaneous psychological, sociological, and philosophical reflections on the significance of modern multitudes. Though our focal texts are historical we will also consider modulations of these themes in our present social environment of viral videos, big data, cyberbullying, targeted advertising, crowd-sourcing, and zombie movies. Texts will include works by Baudelaire, Benjamin, Freud, Kracauer, Fritz Lang, Manet, Musil, Rilke, Seurat, and Simmel.

2013-2014 Spring

25007 The Places of Memory, 1780-1880

(GRMN 25014,RUSS 25007)

This course will investigate the affinities between place and memory in literature. In considering works that span a century of literature, we will reflect on memory as a force that emerges as an expression of self – or nation – that is tethered to objects, places, or structures. Course readings will be drawn primarily from German, Russian, and Anglophone literatures (Eichendorff, Tieck, Hoffmann, Fet, Tiutchev, Pushkin, Elliot, Scott, Brontë, others). Supplementary readings drawn from literary criticism, philosophy, historiography, and complementary fields will help us to consider the intersection of literature and history as it relates to questions of a historically constructed subject or nation. Topics include collaborative memory, romanticism, intertextuality, historical representation, historical fiction, and nostalgia.No prerequisites. All readings in English with optional reading groups to discuss German and Russian works in the original for all interested students.

2013-2014 Spring

26601 Hamlet and Critical Methods

(ENGL 16711,FNDL 22205)

Shakespeare's Hamlet has probably inspired the most criticism of any play in world literature, and it has certainly inspired some of the greatest criticism. This course explores the goals, presuppositions, strengths, and limitations of different kinds of scholarship and criticism by focusing upon the variety of approaches that have been (or in some cases, could be) applied to Shakespeare's play. The course will focus on modern editorial theory and practice; classical and neoclassical discussions of mimesis, plot, and theatrical affect; Romantic, psychoanalytic, and postmodern discussions of Hamlet as character; recent literary historical discussions of sources and genre; new critical, new historicist, and feminist analyses of the play's imagined world; as well as performances and literary adaptations of Hamlet conceived of as interpretations of the play. Students will write several short response papers to the assigned readings as well as a longer paper analyzing and/or applying different critical approaches to Hamlet.

2013-2014 Spring

20800 Brecht and Beyond

(ENGL 24400,CMST 26200,TAPS 28435)

Brecht is indisputably the most influential playwright in the twentieth century. In this course we will explore the range and variety of Brecht’s own theatre, from the anarchic plays of the 1920’s to the agitprop Lehrstück to the classical parable plays, as well as the works of his heirs in Germany (Heiner Müller, Franz Xaver Kroetz, Peter Weiss), Britain (John Arden, Edward Bond, Caryl Churchill), and sub-Saharan Africa (Soyinka, Ngugi, and various South African theatre practitioners). We will also consider the impact of Brechtian theory on film, from Brecht’s own Kuhle Wampe to Jean-Luc Godard. Undergrad; no first years: PQ Hum and either a theatre or a film course.

2013-2014 Winter

24290 Dialectic and Vernacular Culture in Nineteenth-Century Literature

(MAPH 34290)

The popularity and influence of dialect and regional language in Romantic- and Victorian-era literature may be said to reflect new social and scientific understandings of language as a dual phenomenon, both individual and social. This course will examine the mutual influence of literature and dialectology in the nineteenth century examining important questions about speech and regional oral traditions. We will read popular works by pseudonymic dialect figures like Tim Bobbin and Nathan Hogg, the rural poetry of Clare and Barnes, as well as canonical works by Burns, Mistral, Belli, Twain, Longfellow, Shaw, Hughes, and MacDiarmid. We will also discuss critical issues concerning dialect and vernacular in works by Dante, Herder, von Humboldt, Veselovsky, Bakhtin, Manzoni, Webster, Whitney, Schuchardt, and Bonaparte.

2013-2014 Winter

25006 Private Lives, Public Intellectuals: On the Philosophical Essay in the Western Tradition

This course considers a selection of essays from philosophically informed authors fromacross the Western tradition who engage in reflective literary activity in the public
sphere. We will ask questions such as: what is the essay, and what does it mean to call it
philosophical? Is the essay a form, a genre, a method, a perspective, an attitude, or
something else entirely? What are the rhetorical demands and concerns of the
philosophical essay? What issues do philosophically minded essayists contemplate and
what do they aim to achieve? How do authors navigate the tension between private,
intimate reflection and public reading and consumption? The essays read will take up
such topics as nature, God, love, friendship, death, writing, the self, education, and civic
responsibility. We will begin by reading historical antecedents of the philosophical
essay by authors such as St. Paul, Seneca, Marcus Aurelius, and Augustine. We will then
skip to the birth of the essay in the early modern period with readings including
Montaigne, Bacon, Rousseau, Pascal, Paine, and Kant, and will continue through a
variety of essayists including Samuel Johnson, William Hazlett, Thoreau, Emerson,
Nietzsche, and Tolstoy before we conclude with 20th century and contemporary
essayists including Virginia Woolf, Robert Musil, E. B. White, and other essayists
selected by the students. Along the way we will encounter theoretical works on essay
writing, autobiography, and the rhetoric of public intellectuals.

2013-2014 Winter

28900 Health Care and Limits of State Action

(BPRO 28600,BIOS 29323,HMRT 28602)

Epidemic disease is a challenge on many levels, and increasingly characteristic of our interlinked, post-statist, unequal world. Through a series of readings in anthropology, sociology, ethics, medicine, and political science, we will attempt to reach an understanding of this crisis of both epidemiological technique and state legitimacy, and to sketch out options.

2013-2014 Winter

29703 Introduction to Comparative Literature II: Aesthetics and Politics in Southeast Asian Fictions

Southeast Asia’s cultural production and the discursive legacies of colonialism are often neglected in geopolitically-focused studies of the region. Focusing on Malaysia, Indonesia, the Philippines and Vietnam, the course will examine representations of Southeast Asia in European travel narratives, contrasting these with colonial-period and postcolonial fiction by local authors. Of special concern are: the role of geography, especially the frontier and the tropics (mangroves, swamps, forests), in the representation of self and Other; historical memory and violence; nation and the novel; the (ab)-uses of language and fiction in imagining a utopian or dystopian postcolonial future; canons and questions of value in world literature. Texts/viewings will include Joseph Conrad, Anthony Burgess, Pramoedya Ananta Toer, Jose Rizal, Zhang Guixing, Preeta Samarasan and Joshua Oppenheimer. This course is the second of a two-quarter sequence required for all majors in Comparative Literature.

2013-2014 Winter

21851/31851 Zhuangzi: Literature, Philosophy, or Something Else

(FNDL 22306,EALC 31851)

The early Chinese book attributed to Master Zhuang seems to be a patchwork of fables, polemical discussions, arguments, examples, riddles, and lyrical utterances. Although it has been central to the development of both religious Daoism and Buddhism, the book is alien to both traditions. This course offers a careful reading of the work with some of its early commentaries. Requirement: classical Chinese. 

2013-2014 Winter

32001 What Is Art?

(RLLT 32000,SCTH XXXXX)

The course will address contemporary arguments and claims in aesthetics and the philosophy of art via a detailed discussion of a small number of major texts: Oscar Wilde’s “The Decay of Lying” and “The Critic as Artist” (1891), Leo Tolstoy’s What Is Art (1898), and Martin Heidegger’s The Origin of the Work of Art (1935-7; published 1950). The extravagant claims of these texts are presumed to be of help in describing the ubiquitous attention to art in contemporary affluent societies. A number of more recent essays on aesthetics will also be discussed.

2013-2014 Spring

22302/32302 Literatures of the Christian East: Late antiquity, Byzantium, and Medieval Russia

(CLAS 31113,CLCV 21113,SLAV 22302/32302,HCHR 34604,RLIT 34604)

After the fall of Rome in 476 CE, literatures of the Latin West and – predominantly Greek-speaking – Eastern provinces of the Roman empire followed two very different paths. Covering both religious and secular genres, we will survey some of the most interesting texts written in the Christian East in the period from 330 CE (foundation of Constantinople) to the late 17th c. (Westernization of Russia). Our focus throughout will be on continuities within particular styles and types of discourse (court entertainment, rhetoric, historiography, hagiography) and their functions within East Christian cultures. Readings will include Digenes Akritas and Song of Igor’s Campaign, as well as texts by Emperor Julian the Apostate, Gregory of Nazianzus, Emphraim the Syrian, Anna Comnena, Psellos, Ivan the Terrible, and Archbishop Avvakum. No prerequisites. All readings in English.

2013-2014 Spring

22303/32303 Prosody and Poetic Form: An Introduction to Comparative Metrics

(CLCV 21313,CLAS 31313,SLAV 22303/32303,GRMN 22314/32314)

This class offers (i) an overview of major European systems of versification, with particular attention to their historical development, and (ii) an introduction to the theory of meter. In addition to analyzing the formal properties of verse, we will inquire into their relevance for the articulation of poetic genres and, more broadly, the history of literary (and sub-literary) systems. There will be some emphasis on Graeco-Roman quantitative metrics, its afterlife, and the evolution of Germanic and Slavic syllabo-tonic verse. No prerequisites, but a working knowledge of one European language besides English is strongly recommended.

2013-2014 Winter

33602 The Mirror and the Maze: Scenes and Sentences in Flaubert’s Sentimental Education and Moore and Campbell's From Hell— Two Cities of the Mind

The Mirror and the Maze is a month-long seminar taught by Professor Samuel Delany, during January of 2014. The format of the seminar is a series of informal lectures and discussions. Attendance is required at all eight sessions and class participation is expected.

2013-2014 Winter

23902/33902 Poetics of Gender in the Balkans: Wounded Men, Sworn Virgins and Eternal Mothers

(SOSL 27601/37601,GNSE XXXXX (coming soon))

Through some of the best literary and cinematic works from Southeastern Europe, we will consider the questions of socialization into gendered modes of being – the demands, comforts, pleasures and frustrations that individuals experience while trying to embody and negotiate social categories. We will examine how masculinity and femininity are constituted in the traditional family model, the socialist paradigm, and during post-socialist transitions. We will also contemplate how gender categories are experienced through other forms of identity–the national and socialist especially–as well as how gender is used to symbolize and animate these other identities.

2013-2014 Autumn

24270/34270 Poetry and Translation: Theory and Practice

(MAPH 34310)

This course will introduce students to classic and contemporary texts of translation theory in the West, with an eye to the relevance of these theories for the difficulties and promises of translating poetry. We will read theoretical texts by Jerome, Dryden, Herder, Schleiermacher, Nietzsche, Benjamin, Pound and others, and will test these theories against one another and against various English translations of excerpts taken from Dante's Inferno, as well as translations of individual poems by Charles Baudelaire. Students will have the opportunity to produce their own translations as part of their required work for the course.PQ: Reading knowledge of one foreign language.

2013-2014 Spring

24402/34402 Early Novels: The Ethiopian Story, Parzifal, Old Arcadia

(SCTH 35914,RLLT 24402,RLLT 34402)

The course will introduce the students to the oldest sub-genres of the novel, the idealist story, the chivalric tale and the pastoral.  It will emphasize the originality of these forms and discuss their interaction with the later Spanish, French, and English novel. 

2013-2014 Winter

34410 Kurosawa and his Sources

(CMST 34410,EALC 34410,SCTH 34012)

This interdisciplinary graduate course focuses on ten films of Akira Kurosawa which were based on literary sources, raging from Ryunosuke Akutagawa, Georges Simenon, and Shakespeare to Dostoevsky, Tolstoy, Gorky, and Arseniev. The course will not only introduce to some theoretical and intermedial problems of adaptation of literature to film but also address cultural and political implications of Kurosawa’s adaptation of classic and foreign sources. We will study how Kurosawa’s turn to literary adaptation provided a vehicle for circumventing social taboos of his time and offered a screen for addressing politically sensitive and sometimes censored topics of Japan’s militarist past, war crimes, defeat in the Second World War, and ideological conflicts of reconstruction. The course will combine film analysis with close reading of relevant literary sources, contextualized by current work of political, economic, and cultural historians of postwar Japan. The course is meant to provide a hands-on training in the interdisciplinary methodology of Comparative Literature. Undergraduate students can be admitted only with the permission of the instructor. Prerequisites: Intro to Film or Close Analysis of Film class. Course limited to 10 participants.Syllabus available here.

2013-2014 Winter

34505 Russian Poetry from Blok to Pasternak

(RUSS 34505)

We will survey the selected poetry of major Russian modernists from 1900 to 1935, including lyrical and narrative genres. Poets covered include: Aleksandr Blok, Andrei Belyi, Viacheslav Ivanov, Nikolai Gumilev, Osip Mandel’shtam, Anna Akhmatova, Velimir Khlebnikov, Vladimir Mayakovsky, Marina Tsvetaeva, Boris Pasternak. In addition to tracing the development of poetic doctrines (from symbolism through acmeism and futurism), we will investigate the close correlations between formal innovation and the changing semantics of Russian poetry. Attention will also be paid to contemporary developments in Western European poetry. Knowledge of Russian required.

2013-2014 Winter

35614 Hölderlin and the Greeks

(GRMN 35614,CLAS 45613)

The German poet Friedrich Hölderlin submitted to the paradoxical double-bind of Johann Joachim Winckelmann’s injunction that “the only way for us [Germans] to become great or — if this is possible — inimitable, is to imitate the ancients.” As he wrote in his short essay “The standpoint from which we should consider antiquity,” Hölderlin feared being crushed by the originary brilliance of his Greek models (as the Greeks themselves had been), and yet foresaw that modern European self-formation must endure the ordeal of its encounter with the Greek Other. The faculty of the imagination was instrumental to the mediated self-formation of this Bildung project, for imagination alone was capable of making Greece a living, vitalizing, presence on the page. Our seminar will therefore trace the work of poetic imagination in Hölderlin’s texts: the spatiality and mediality of the written and printed page, and their relation to the temporal rhythms of spoken discourse. All texts will be read in English translation, but a reading knowledge of German and/or Greek would be desirable. (Cross-listed with: Classics and Comparative Literature. Graduate).

2013-2014 Spring

35713 Avarice, After All

(CDIN 35713,GRMN 35713)

With the help of Freud, Marx, Lacan, Foucault, Agamben (among others) along with some highpoints of the European literary canon, we propose to develop a “critique of avarice,” a project to be sharply distinguished from the moralistic indignation at greed. Our historical and theoretical reflections on avarice open out on to a number of domains and modes of inquiry: from literary criticism to psychoanalysis, from the study of political economy to theories of biopolitics, and finally to the “Jewish question” in relation to all of this. The core text and touchstone of the seminar will be Shakespeare’s The Merchant of Venice, in which the tensions, ambiguities, disavowals, hatreds, projections, and repressions associated with the “avarice complex” are magisterially staged and played out. Attention will also be given to the subsequent history of the figure of Shylock as well as to the capacities for mercy and forgiveness that were posited as the ideal opposites of avarice and usury. One of the goals of the seminar is to interrogate this very opposition.Note: Consent of instructor required.

2013-2014 Autumn

36001 How to think about literature: the main notions

(RLLT 36000,SCTH XXXXX (coming soon))

In literary studies new trends and theories rarely supersede older ones.  While in physics and biology Aristotle has long been obsolete, literary scholars still find his Poetics to be a source of important insights.  And yet literary studies are not resistant to change.  Over time, they have experienced a genuine historical growth in thinking. Perhaps one can best describe the discipline of literature as a stable field of recurring issues that generate innovative thinking. How to think about literature will introduce graduate students to the main notion of the field.  The aim of the course is to identify an object of study that is integral, yet flexible enough to allow for comparisons between its manifestations in various national traditions.

2013-2014 Spring

26913/36913 Anagnorisis and the Cognitive Work of Theater

(GRMN 26913,GRMN 36913,CLAS 25513,CLAS 35513,TAPS XXXXX)

In the Poetics Aristotle conceives anagnorisis or recognition as one of the three constitutive parts of the dramatic plot and defines it as the “a change from ignorance (agnoia) to knowledge (gnosis).” Implying the rediscovery of something previously known anagnorisis refers to the emplotment and staging of a certain kind of cognitive work characteristic of theater (as a locus of theoria or theory). For recognition is not only required of the dramatis personae on stage but also of the spectators who need to cognize or recognize a character whenever s/he enters. Just as the characters’ anagnorisis isn’t restricted to the filiation, i.e. identity, of other characters the audience’s cognition concerns the understanding the plot as a whole. In short, by focusing on anagnorisis we can gain insight in the specific cognitive work of theater (and drama). Naturally we will begin in antiquity and examine the instantiation of recognition in Homer’s Odyssey and several Greek tragedies as well as its first theorization in Aristotle’s Poetics. Then we will jump to the modernes, specifically Enlightenment theater’s obsession with anagnorisis and the cognitive work it performs, and investigate dramas by Diderot and Lessing. Kleist’s dramatic deconstructions of German bourgeois and classical theater test the Enlightenment’s claim to reason and reform of human cognition. Our last stop will be Brecht’s theater of “Entfremdung” that makes the alienation at the heart of anagnorisis into the centerpiece of his aesthetic and political project. If we have time, we will also take a look at comical recognition as self-reflection of its tragic counterpart. Readings and discussions in English.

2013-2014 Autumn

27204/37204 Realisms

(CMST 27204/37204)

The course will examine key genealogies, theoretical debates, and critical accounts of realism in the cinema. Questions of realism have been carried over from the “traditional” arts and literature, but had undergone a sea-change with the particular ontological and epistemological claims of the cinematic medium, across fiction and documentary, mainstream and experimental forms. While the concept seemed bracketed (or buried) with the advent of structuralism and post-modernism, reality effects—traversing types, genres, and ideologies of representation—still haunt the cinematic imagination. The claim to “presence” carried by photographic indexicality, the historical conventions of mimesis and illusionism, the shifting values of document, witness, testimony, of the material and the referential, of the authentic and the composed—all ensured the continued fascination with realism and its productive transfigurations through our time. We will explore examples from different cinemas and cultural moments, and consider debates on the political implications of realism and its capacity for transformation and revival.

2013-2014 Winter

27414/37414 Interpolation: Towards a Poetics of Philology in Early-Modern Europe

(FREN 27414/37414)

This course will examine the philological notion of interpolation - the insertion of new material into a text perceived to be faulty or lacking - not only as an operation of textual reparation or editorial alteration, but more importantly as constituting in and of itself a form of literary writing or authorship, whose poetics we will explore.  What is, we will ask, the relation between literary scholarship and literary creation?  We will concentrate primarily, but not exclusively, on early-modern writings, employing a comparative perspective which will allow the examination of other artistic practices beyond the literary, including music and sculpture.  Among the authors to be considered will be Euripides, Pascal, Mme de Sévigné, Mme Dacier, Furetière, Milton, Swift and Baudelaire.  In addition, theoretic readings will be discussed to examine problems such as the coherence and identity of literary texts, the role of the author, and the status of philology and literary criticism.  The course will be in English, but students registering under the French course number will read French texts in their original language and conduct all written work in French.

2013-2014 Winter

29101/39101 Pascal and Simone Weil on the Human Condition

(FREN 29100,FREN 39100)

Pascal in the seventeenth century and Simone Weil in the twentieth formulated a compelling vision of the human condition, torn between greatness and misery. They showed how human imperfection coexists with the noblest callings, how attention struggles with diversion and how individuals can be rescued from their usual reliance on public opinion and customary beliefs. Both thinkers point to the religious dimension of human experience and suggest unorthodox ways of approaching it. The course will be taught in English. For French undergraduates and graduates, we will hold a by-weekly one-hour meeting to study the original French texts. Undergrads must be in their third or fourth year.

2013-2014 Spring

29500/39500 Le Règne des passions au 17e siècle

(FREN 24301/34301,REMS 34301)

This course is a study of the Early Modern vision of human passions, as reflected in literature. We read plays by Shakespeare, Corneille and Racine, narratives by Cervantes, d’Urfé, Saint-Réal, and Mme de La Fayette and maxims by La Rochefoucauld and Pascal. The course is in French and most required texts are in French. Undergrads must be in their third or fourth year.

2013-2014 Winter

41200 Decolonizing Literature and Film in Southern Africa

(ENGL 44507)

While ‘postcolonialism’ may turn a complex and contradictory history into a tidy theory, decolonizing highlights the uneven and unfinished processes of writing and filming national, transnational and anti-national narratives, from the cultural nationalism of the 1940s and 1950s to the possibly post-national present. We will explore the links as well as the differences among the textual and cinematic cultures of South Africa, Zimbabwe, Angola and Mozambique and examine the potential and pitfalls of applying postcolonial and other theories to these cultures. Authors may include Nadine Gordimer, Athol Fugard, Zakes Mda, Shimmer Chinodya, Yvonne Vera, Tsitsi Dangarembga, Bessie Head, Luandino Vieira, and/or Mia Couto; theory and political analysis may include anticolonial writing by Fanon, Mandela, Neto, and Cabral and contemporary critics: Ann McClintock, Njabulo Ndebele, Kwame Appiah, Robert Mshengu Kavanagh and others.

2013-2014 Spring

41203 Approaches to Teaching Comparative Literature

This course will explore distinct approaches and curricula related to teaching comparative literature in university and college settings. During the course, we will review what constitutes introductory and advanced courses in Comparative Literature and how to incorporate various topics, languages, and media within such courses. We will begin with a discussion about setting course objectives and how these are related to the missions of institutions, programs of study, and student demographics. Following this review, we will investigate how to align student learning goals with teaching strategies by assessing which classroom activities and assignments best enable students to meet learning objectives, keeping the particular challenges of teaching comparative literature in mind.  The overall goal of the course is to prepare graduate students to teach in a post-secondary setting by deepening their comprehension of what practices constitute effective teaching, and by producing documents related to the teaching of college-level courses.

2013-2014 Autumn

42802 Concepts, Metaphors, Genealogies: Historical Semantics and Literature

(CLAS 42813,SLAV 42802,GRMN 42814)

In this seminar, we will approach conceptual history (a.k.a. Begriffsgeschichte) as a resource for philologically-informed study of cultural interaction, continuity, and change. We will begin by developing a theoretical background in historical semantics, conceptual history, Metaphorologie, and history of ideas (focusing on the work of Nietzsche, Spitzer, Koselleck, Blumenberg, and Hadot); the second part of the quarter will be dedicated to historical and theoretical problems in the study of concepts in literary texts and across cultures. Reading knowledge of two (or more) foreign languages is a strong desideratum. As a final project, seminar participants will be expected to choose a particular concept and trace its history and uses in literary texts, ideally in more than one language. 

2013-2014 Spring

43350 Lacan and Religion

(DVPR 49904)

Whereas Freud believed with the Enlightenment that science would increasingly demonstrate religion to be an illusion, Lacan saw religion as that which would save us from the increasingly loud discourse of science. From Lacan’s early (Freudian) notion of the Nom-du-Père, to his later conflation of Freud and Christ (as rescuing the father), and finally to his Barromean knots and the sinthome, Lacan considers religion a “garbage can, for it has not the slightest homogeneity.” This course, then, will consider Lacan’s concept of religion. We will begin with readings from Freud’s texts on religion: “Obsessive Actions and Religious Practices,” “The Future of an Illusion,” “Totem and Taboo,” “Civilization and its Discontents,” “Moses and Monotheism.” We will then read the texts on religion from Lacan, considering how his views change on the subject, and what the stakes are in his efforts to separate psychoanalysis from science and religion.Requirements: reading knowledge of French, basic familiarity with Lacan. 

2013-2014 Winter

44621 Technologies of Visualization: Florence Then and Now

(CDIN 44621,ENGL 67107,ARTH 41600,ITAL 44621)

This course explores the uses of technologies of visualization for the production of humanistic knowledge with Renaissance Florence as both subject (the origin of literary and artistic “picturing” techniques that enabled new modes of representing individuals as well as geographies, and stimulated new ways of relating the visible to the invisible) and as object of representation (in stories, novels, films, images, as well as more abstractly in social network mapping, virtual imaging, and even videogame construction). We will be looking at technological phenomena including the Renaissance-era invention of perspective, the telescope, cartographical and chorographical innovations, and improved mirrors, and their impact on conceptualizations of the self, knowledge, and power in Machiavelli and others. But we also will be considering Florentine technologies of representation as the prehistory of the contemporary transformation of the real into digitally-mediated forms via geospatial mapping, network analysis, cinematography, and even videogame production. We will be asking if the Florentines have any lessons to share about the possibilities, dangers, and pleasures of technologized representation.

2013-2014 Autumn

44622 Network Analysis, Literary Criticism, and the Digital Humanities

(CDIN 44321,ENGL 44321,EALC 40451,MAPH 41500 SALC 44500,NEHC 44321)

This course will introduce students to the digital humanities by focusing on the acquisition of a single quantitative method (social network analysis) and its application to a single historical context (literary modernism). The course familiarizes students with ongoing debates surrounding the digital humanities and the use of computational methods for literary critique, but will also move past meta-discussion by providing an opportunity to explore these methods through collaborative projects. Readings will be focused on theories of literary modernism and sociological approaches to the study of culture. Students will learn how to build network datasets, manipulate visualization software, run simple analytics, and think critically about the potential uses of social-scientific methods. No prerequisites required.

2013-2014 Spring

46114 Goethe’s Faust I

(GRMN 46114,SCTH 44912)

This is the first part of a two-quarter seminar devoted to Goethe’s Faust tragedy, with each segment devoted to one of the work’s two parts. Since three substantial new editions (plus commentary) have been published within the past two decades, scholarship now finds itself in an excellent position to develop theoretically informed readings of what is arguably the most significant work in the German canon. The main task of the first-quarter seminar will be to examine Faust I. However, we will also consider the Faust tradition, including the 1587 Volksbuch (so-called), Lessing’s Faust fragment, and some other contemporary and subsequent renditions of Faust. This segment will also provide an opportunity to survey Goethe’s poetic and intellectual development from 1770 to 1808, when Faust I was first published in its complete form. Of particular interest in our investigation of Faust I will be: a) the theological background; b) structural principles; c) linguistic figuration. Prominent interpretations of the play by Goethe’s contemporaries (e.g., Schelling, Hegel) will be considered. We shall also examine two sequences of Faust illustrations by Peter Cornelius and Eugène Delacroix as well as two performances of the drama (from dvd). This seminar may be taken alone, or in combination with the seminar on Faust II.  Students taking both seminars are encouraged to write a single substantial research paper.

2013-2014 Winter

46214 Goethe’s Faust II

(GRMN 46214,SCTH 44913)

Continuing the sequence begun in Winter Quarter, this seminar will examine Goethe’s Faust II. Due to the intricacies of this work, we shall devote two sessions to each of its five acts. In addition to the close study of the text, we will consider major issues in the scholarship: a) the question of allegory and its theoretical grounding in Marx and Benjamin; b) the question of the modern (Faust as tragedy of modern consciousness); c) the dialectic of the Classic and the Romantic; d) Goethe’s scientific and aesthetic views as embodied in the play; e) the theological frame, especially in connection with the play’s conclusion. In addition to the commentaries, certain critical works will also be discussed, including contributions by Kommerell, Emrich, Adorno, Schlaffer, Schmidt, and Anderegg. The world-literary background of Goethe’s play will likewise be an important theme of the seminar. This seminar may be taken alone, or in combination with the seminar on Faust I. Students taking both seminars are encouraged to write a single substantial research paper.

2013-2014 Spring

47210 Poetics and Rhetoric of Cinema

(CMST 67210)

How do rhetorical figures – metaphor, metonymy, synechdoche, allegory, among other tropes so extensively studied in the verbal arts – mediate our perception? how do they inform stylistic and even theoretical conceptions of the moving image?  Do they just mimic, or translate literary devices? Do they function merely as ornaments or puns, offering occasional poetic maneuvers in ambitious films? In this seminar we shall explore ways in which tropes can be seen to deeply inform the cinema's means of articulation and the dynamic workings of the image -- the coalescing and mutation of signs, the relation of visual and narrative or expository forms, the differentiation of styles, the very consciousness of the medium with respect to traditions and conventions. Readings will include some influential texts in poetics (eg. Dante, Coleridge, Auerbach, Fletcher, Benjamin, Jakobson, De Man) as well as writings devoted to questions of cinematic figuration (Munsterberg, Eisenstein, Kracauer, Perez, Williams, Rodowick). We shall discuss these in view of films by Eisenstein, Bunuel, Bresson, Franju, Pasolini, Snow, Burnett, Ruiz, and others.

2013-2014 Spring

50008 Michel Foucault: Self, Government, and Regimes of Truth

(PHIL 50008,DVPR 50008,FREN 40008)

PQ: Limited enrollment; Students interested in taking for credit should attend first seminar before registering. Reading knowledge of French required. Consent Only. 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. (I)

2013-2014 Autumn

50200 Seminar: Catharsis & Other Aesthetic Responses

Consent of instructor. 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. For other humanities PhDs: ACTIVE working knowledge of at least one of the following: French, German, (classical) Greek or Spanish. This PhD seminar examines the ramifications of catharsis and other responses to texts and images, in other words it investigates the relationship between effect and affect. Beginning with Aristotle and present day responses to catharsis, we will investigate the kinds of aesthetic response invoked by tragic drama and theory (esp Hegel), realism (Lukacs, Bazin and Brecht), as well as theories of pleasure (Barthes, Derrida), judgment (Kant, Bourdieu) and boredom (Spacks). We will conclude with a test case, exploring the potential and limitations of catharsis as an appropriate response to the literary and cinematic representation of trauma in and after the Argentine 'dirty war.' An essential part of the discussion will be the problem of translating key terms, not only from one language to another but also from one theoretical discourse and/or medium to another.

2013-2014 Winter

50201 Seminar: Contemporary Critical Theory

(DVPR 50201)

This course will examine some of the salient texts of postmodernism. Part of the question of the course will be the status and meaning of “post”-modern, post-structuralist. The course requires active and informed participation.

2013-2014 Autumn

25010 Comparative Migrations

(ENGL 25010)

"Comparative Migrations" interrogates how literature and film takes up the issue of migration across the globe. How do these texts represent the experiences of dislocation, marginalization, and acculturation usually associated with migration across literary traditions? How do the ideas of home, longing, and belonging shift throughout these texts? How do distinct historical, social, cultural and political parameters impact both the writing and reading of these texts? Texts under consideration will include novels by Samuel Selvon, Calixthe Beyala, Milton Hatoum, and Junot Diaz and films by Gurinder Chadha, Pedro Costa, and Mathieu Kassovitz. Theorists include Stuart Hall, Edward Said, Édouard Glissant, Michel Foucault, and Miguel Vale de Almeida.

2014-2015 Autumn

25310 Love Connections: Stories of Famous Couples in Pre-Modern Indian Literature

(SALC 25300,GNSE 25310,RLST 26811)

Is love a universal theme? What constitutes a good match? To what extent are love and desire culturally constituted? This course aims to answer such questions through the stories of five famous couples in pre-modern Indian literature. These couples—some divine, some human and some mixed—will provide multiple perspectives on central themes in Indian culture such as love, desire, and devotion as well as on the advantages and disadvantages of being human and/or of being divine where love is concerned. Readings in this course will include translations of classical Sanskrit texts their retellings in various regional languages and a few modern adaptations.

2014-2015 Autumn

26014 Seriously Funny: Comedy, Critique and Transformation

(GRMN 26014)

“True earnestness itself invents the comic,” according to Søren Kierkegaard. Exploring philosophies of the comic, as well as filmic and literary material, this seminar seeks to investigate what may be called the serious core of comedy. First, some fundamental theories of comedy, humor and laughter will be introduced. These range from perspectives of supremacy, relief, shallowness or negligibility (especially when compared to the tragic), the mechanic, the lowly/corporeal, to theories of incongruity. We will then focus on the critical, transformative and political potentials of the comic / comedy: Ways in which comedy copes with chance and contingencies; with strategies of resistance and inversion in face of disproportionately more powerful opponents; the comic as a mode of inclusion and exclusion; comedy and its relation to freedom and to the sublime; comedy as a means to exceed, undermine and open up boundaries; the comic as an attempt to get to grips with situations and events we cannot (fully) master. We will also discuss limits and complications of any such critical potential. Readings may include texts by S. Freud, I. Kant, G.W.F. Hegel, F. Th. Vischer, Jean Paul, Søren Kierkegaard, Mikhail Bakhtin, Henri Bergson, Judith Butler, Alenka Zupančič and others; films include works by Ernst Lubitsch and Woody Allen.  Some reading knowledge of German is desirable, but not a course requirement.

2014-2015 Autumn

26208 Literatures of Russian and African-American Soul

(RUSS 26208,RUSS 36208,ENGL 28917)

Among the legacies of slavery, serfdom and colonialism is the idea that dominant, Europeanized cultures have lost something essential, which can still be found in the peoples they have oppressed, and is sometimes vaguely designated by the term "soul." We consider this tendency in the Russian and American traditions, reading texts from both sides of the social and economic divide. Material includes Tolstoy, Turgenev, Douglass, Dostoevsky, DuBois,  Hurston, Hughes, Platonov, Baldwin, & Solzhenitsyn—and lots of music.

2014-2015 Autumn

27114 Faust, Myth of the Modern World

(GRMN 27114)

In this course, we will consider three renderings of the Faust myth: Johann Wolfgang von Goethe’s Faust, Part One, Heinrich Heine’s “dance poem” Faust, and Friedrich Murnau’s expressionist film Faust. In addition to these core readings/viewings, we will study the origins of the Faust myth in sixteenth-century Germany and survey its many transformations across art, literature, and music. This course is an excellent introduction to the history of German literature and culture. All readings and class discussions will be in German.

2014-2015 Autumn

29701 Intro to Comparative Lit I: Problems, Methods, Precedents

As the study of relations among the world's literary and other expressive,traditions, comparative literature confronts a host of questions. What do,works from different times and places have in common? How can we meaningfully assess their differences? How do we account for systematic and extra-systemic features of literature? Is translation ever adequate? This course offers consideration of these and related issues through influential critical examples. This course is the first of a two-quarter sequence required for all majors in Comparative Literature.

2014-2015 Autumn

23415 Theories of the Novel

(ENGL 23415)

Theories of the Novel: This course explores some of the fundamental conceptual issues raised by novels: in what way do plot, character, and authorial intention function in the novel, as opposed to other genres? How are novels formally unified (if they are)? What special problems are associated with beginnings and endings of novels? How do such basic features as titles and chapter divisions contribute to novelistic meanings? What are the ideological presuppositions – about gender, race, class, but also about the nature of social reality, of historicity, and of modernity -- inherent in a novelistic view? What ethical practices and structures of affect do novels encourage?

2014-2015 Spring

24807 South African Fiction and Film

(ENGL 24807)

This course examines the intersection of fiction and film in Southern Africa since mid 20th Century decolonization. We begin with Cry, the Beloved Country, a best seller written by South African Alan Paton while in the US, and the original film version by a Hungarian-born British-based director (Zoltan Korda), and an American screenwriter (John Howard Lawson), which together show both the international impact of South African stories and the important elements missed by overseas audiences. We will continue with fictional and non-fictional narrative responses to apartheid and decolonization in film and in print, and examine the power and the limits of what critic Louise Bethlehem has called the “rhetoric of urgency” on local and international audiences. We will conclude with writing and film that grapples with the complexities of the post-apartheid world, whose challenges, from crime and corruption to AIDS and the particular problems faced by women and gender minorities, elude the heroic formulas of the anti-apartheid struggle era. (B)

2014-2015 Spring

25011 Beckett Beyond the 'Absurd'

(ENGL 24409)

As an author that dislikes being pigeonholed, Samuel Beckett nonetheless gets labeled as an Absurdist, even the father of the Theater of the Absurd. It is not as if this label is entirely unmerited, but his philosophical interests reach beyond the species of existentialism that was fashionable at the moment of his literary debut. This course will look at theatrical and prose texts spanning Beckett’s career, in conjunction with a variety of philosophical texts from the Cartesian, continental, and analytic traditions, to see how Beckett re-appropriates and transforms philosophical problems and themes within a literary context. Specifically we will look at how Beckett reorients the relations between philosophical skepticism, the philosophy of language, and the problem of meaning.

2014-2015 Spring

25215 Catching Spies

(GRMN 25215)

How do we account for 20th century literature's fascination with spies and spying? How do we explain the emergence of this new literary subject with the inauguration of the new century? This course will examine the place the figure of the spy holds for twentieth-century imagination as reflected in literature, theater and film. It will suggest that the spy becomes a locus of fascination for literature when overlooked by the disciplines charged with regulating his actions. In positing espionage literature and film as a response to the law's impossibility of address we will establish the potential the figure of the spy holds to respond to an array of questions relating to identity and subjectivity through such tropes as homelessness and border crossing, sexual difference, theatricality and masquerade, technology and voyeurism.

2014-2015 Spring

26016 The Medieval Persian Romance: Gorgani's Vis and Ramin

(FNDL 26016)

This class is an enquiry into the medieval romance genre through the close and comparative reading of one of its oldest extant representatives, Gorgâni's Vis & Râmin (w. ca. 1054 CE). With roots that go back to Late Antiquity, this romance is a valuable interlocutor between the Greek novel, Arabic love theory and poetics, and well-known European romances like Tristan, Lancelot, and Cligès: a sustained exploration of psychological turmoil and moral indecision, and a vivid dramatization of the many contradictions inherent in erotic theory, most starkly by the lovers' faithful adultery. By reading Vis & Râmin alongside some of its generic neighbors (Kallirrhoe, Leukippe, Tristan, Cligès), as well as the love-theories of writers like Plato, Avicenna, Jâhiz, Ibn Hazm, and Andreas Cappellanus, we will map out the various kinds of literary work the romance is called upon to do, and investigate myriad and shifting conceptions of romantic love as performance, subjectivity, and moral practice. An optional section introducing selections from the original text in Persian will be available if there is sufficient student interest.

2014-2015 Spring

26610 The Brighter Side of the Balkans: Humor & Satire in Lit & Film

(NEHC 20884,NEHC 30884,SOSL 26610,SOSL 36610)

Laughter is universal but its causes are culturally determined. A joke in one culture can be a shaggy dog story in another.  The figure of the trickster occurs in many places and times and under many guises. Stereotypes can be revelatory about those who deploy them. At the same time, humor can be both an outlet and a danger. There is a special word in Russian for those sentenced to prison for telling political jokes.  This course focuses on Balkan humor, which, like the Balkans itself, is located in a space where "Western Europe", "Eastern Europe" "Central Europe" "The Mediterranean", "The Levant", and the "Near/Middle East" intersect in various ways (linguistically and culturally), compete for dominance or resist domination, and ultimately create a unique--albeit fuzzily bounded--subject of study.In this course, we examine the poetics of laughter in the Balkans. In order to do so, we introduce humor as both cultural and transnational. We unpack the multiple layers of cultural meaning in the logic of “Balkan humor.” We also examine the functions and mechanisms of laughter, both in terms of cultural specificity and general practice and theories of humor. Thus, the study of Balkan humor will help us elucidate the “Balkan” and the “World,” and will provide insight not only into cultural mores and social relations, but into the very notion of “funny.” Our own laughter in class will be the best measure of our success – both cultural and intellectual.

2014-2015 Spring

20601 Introduction to Drama: Adventures in Time and Space

(ENGL 10600,TAPS 19300)

This course introduces students to key concepts and interpretive tools to read and understand drama both as text and as performance. Students will learn to read and watch plays and performances closely, taking into account form, character, plot and genre, but also conventions of staging, acting, and spectatorship across historical time and geographic space. Through close reading, theater research, and trips to performances, we will consider how various agents—playwrights, directors, actors, and audiences—generate plays and give them meaning. Essential plays from a range of times and places: Sophocles, Shakespeare, Calderon, Strindberg, Ibsen, Wilder, Pirandello, Brecht, Beckett, Parks, McCraney.

2014-2015 Winter

21970 The Global South Asian Diaspora in Literature and Film

(CRES 21907)

The migration of peoples from South Asia (India, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, and Pakistan)abroad is usually divided into two distinct strands: the first is centered on the migration ofindentured laborers in the late 19th century to locales in Africa, Southeast Asia, and theCaribbean, while the second takes shape around the post-1960s migration of South Asians to theUK, USA, and Canada. Scholars whose work focuses on the various communities of SouthAsians in all of these places use the word “diaspora” as one that links these groups together. Theterm itself is of Greek origin, meaning to scatter or disperse, and in its earliest usages referred tothe dispersal of the Jewish community exiled from its homeland. But in its expanded use,“diaspora” refers to communities of people who share a common national or ethnic origin, andoften, but not always, a common language and religious belief. This course takes up literary andcinematic representations of the global South Asian diaspora in order to analyze how they createnarratives about diasporic experiences across historical periods and around the globe. How dothese texts represent the experiences of dislocation, marginalization, and acculturation usuallyassociated with migration? How do the ideas of home, longing, and belonging shift throughoutthese texts? How do distinct historical, social, cultural and political parameters impact both thewriting and reading of these texts? Can we, and should we try to, read these multifaceted voicesof the South Asian diaspora together? To answer these questions, the course will draw on avariety of perspectives from literature, history, and sociology and evaluate issues, such as gender,politics, generational conflict, race, class, and transnational encounters as they pertain to thecourse material. The texts under consideration will include novels by Kiran Desai, Jhumpa Lahiri,and Monica Ali and films by Mira Nair and Gurinder Chadha, among others.

2014-2015 Winter

24501 Forms of Lyric from Classical Antiquity to Postmodernism

(CLCV 27109,SLAV 24501)

Moving beyond the modern perception of lyric as an expression of the poet’s subjectivity, this course confronts the remarkable longevity of varieties of lyric 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 will sample from the work of many poets, including Sappho, Horace, Ovid, Hölderlin, Pushkin, Whitman, Mandel’shtam, Brodsky, and Milosz. All readings in English.

2014-2015 Winter

29704 Intro to Comp Lit II: Comparative Modernisms: China and India in the Modern Literary World

(SALC 27300,EALC 25009)

This course takes a comparative approach to the literary term “modernism.” Instead of reading the term as originating in the West and subsequently travelling to the East, we will explore modernism as a plural and globally constituted literary practice. In doing so, we will also challenge the literary and real categories of “East” and “West.” Reading the roles and imaginations of China, North India, and the (differentiated) West in a variety of texts, we will question the aesthetics and politics of representation, of dynamic cultural exchange, and of the global individual in the modern literary world. Through novels, short stories, poetry, and theoretical orientations, we will conduct close readings and develop working definitions of cross-cultural comparative modernisms. Contributing to recent interest in China-India relationships, this course also aims to uncover new dialogues between Chinese and Indian writers during the modern period. Literary readings include E.M. Forster, Franz Kafka, Lu Xun, Yu Dafu, Premchand, Nirmal Verma, among others. We will also consider the theoretical works of Fredric Jameson, Edward Said, and Georg Lukacs, and others. All readings will be in English.

2014-2015 Winter

30452 Writing the Jewish State

(NEHC 30452)

This seminar examines the role of literature in the Zionist movement. We will read utopian descriptions of the Jewish State, poems about its foundation and short stories that criticize its actions. Particular attention will be paid to the literature of war and to questions of genre. How are generic choices motivated by the author's political positions and how do these choices define the impact of a work? If there is student interest, a section will be created for reading sources in Hebrew. Knowledge of Hebrew is not a prerequisite.

2014-2015 Winter

31222 Oedipus Tyrannus: Thinking in and with Tragedy

(SCTH 31222,GREK 24714,GREK 34714)

Oedipus: exemplary sovereign or outlier? Savior of the city or its destroyer? Epistemophile or –phobe? Upholder or suspender of the law (including the laws of kinship)? Sophocles’ Oedipus tyrannos has been good to think with since its first production in the fifth century BCE. As a meditation on kingship as well as kinship, the play offers a complex Oedipus, if not, perhaps, an Oedipus complex. Sophocles’ meditation on the polis, law, family, knowledge, the structure of mind, desire, and the disease in and of state has proved especially rich for philosophers, psychoanalysts, and theater artists; the play also famously provides the core example for Aristotle’s meditation on tragedy in the Poetics. We will explore the OT as tragedy, as resource, as example and exception. Although no knowledge of Greek is required for this course, there will be assignment options for those who wish to do reading in Greek. Note: This course will be taught twice a week for the first five weeks of Winter 2015 on Tuesdays/Thursdays, 1:30-4:20pm in F 305.

2014-2015 Winter

31600 Marxism and Modern Culture

(ENGL 32300)

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. TuTh 1:30-2:50 for all students; If ten or more MAPH students enroll, they will also attend a tutorial session on Friday 8:30-10:20.

2014-2015 Winter

22301/32301 War and Peace

(RUSS 22302,RUSS 32302,HIST 23704,FNDL 27103,ENGL 28912,ENGL 32302)

A close reading of Tolstoy's great novel, with attention to theoretical approaches to be found in the large critical apparatus devoted to the novel.

2014-2015 Spring

33114 Aby Warburg and the origins of Kulturwissenschaft

(GRMN 33114)

This course explores Aby Warburg as a founder of Kulturwissenschaft in the context of other thinkers of the time such as Jacob Burckhardt, Sigmund Freud, and Walter Benjamin.  Trained as an art historian with an expertise in Renaissance art, Warburg morphed into a historian of images (i.e., Bildwissenschaft) and – more broadly – into a historian of culture.  We will trace Warburg’s cultural historical method as it develops primarily from philology, but also art history, anthropology, the comparative study of religions, and evolutionary biology.  How does Warburg read culture? What is his methodological approach for examining a wide variety of cultural artifacts ranging from Ovid’s Metamorphoses, Poliziano’s poetry, and Dürer’s etchings to postal stamps and news photographs? How can these artifacts be vehicles for cultural memory? And how does the transmission of cultural memory in artworks manifest itself in different media such as literary texts, religious processions, astrological treatises, photography, and painting? Moreover, how does Warburg’s work help us contextualize and historicize “interdisciplinarity” today?

2014-2015 Autumn

23201/33201 Returning the Gaze: The Balkans and Western Europe

(SOSL 27200/37200,NEHC 20885/30885)

The Other Within the Self: Identity in Balkan Literature and Film. This two-course sequence examines discursive practices in a number of literary and cinematic works from the South East corner of Europe through which identities in the region become defined by two distinct others: the “barbaric, demonic” Ottoman and the “civilized” Western European.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.

2014-2015 Autumn

23301/33301 Balkan Folklore

(SOSL 26800/36800,NEHC 20568,NEHC 30568,ANTH 25908,ANTH 35908)

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.

2014-2015 Winter

23401/33401 The Burden of History: The Nation and Its Lost Paradise

(SOSL 27300 / 37300,NEHC 20573,NEHC 30573,HIST 24005,HIST 34005)

The Other Within the Self: Identity in Balkan Literature and Film. This two-course sequence examines discursive practices in a number of literary and cinematic works from the South East corner of Europe through which identities in the region become defined by two distinct others: the “barbaric, demonic” Ottoman and the “civilized” Western European.This course begins by defining the nation both historically and conceptually, with attention to Romantic nationalism and its flourishing in Southeastern Europe. We then look at the narrative of original wholeness, loss, and redemption through which Balkan countries retell their Ottoman past. With the help of Freud's analysis of masochistic desire and Žižek's theory of the subject as constituted by trauma, we contemplate the national fixation on the trauma of loss and the dynamic between victimhood and sublimity. The figure of the Janissary highlights the significance of the other in the definition of the self. Some possible texts are Petar Njegoš's Mountain Wreath; Ismail Kadare's The Castle; and Anton Donchev's Time of Parting.

2014-2015 Winter

23902/33902 Gender in the Balkans: Sworn Virgins, Wounded Men & Eternal Mothers

(SOSL 27601 / 37601,GNSE 27607)

Through some of the best literary and cinematic works from Southeastern Europe, we will consider the questions of socialization into gendered modes of being – the demands, comforts, pleasures and frustrations that individuals experience while trying to embody and negotiate social categories. We will examine how masculinity and femininity are constituted in the traditional family model, the socialist paradigm, and during post-socialist transitions. We will also contemplate how gender categories are experienced through other forms of identity–the national and socialist especially–as well as how gender is used to symbolize and animate these other identities. The course assumes no prior knowledge of the history of Southeastern Europe, literature or gender theory. All readings in English translation.

2014-2015 Autumn

34810 MAPH Poetics Core Course

(MAPH 34800,ENGL 34800)

This intensive seminar focuses on recurrent tensions in poetics: for instance, voice and text, object and event, semantics and prosody, invention and representation. The historical span will reach from Plato to Prynne, and discussion will advance between constellations of poems and theoretical texts.

2014-2015 Autumn

36012 19th Century French Poetry in Translation

(SCTH 36012,ENGL 36012)

A study of modern French lyric poetry at the graduate level: Baudelaire, Mallarmé, Verlaine, Rimbaud, Apollinaire. Texts will be read in English with reference to the French originals. Close reading, references to poetry in English, and focus on problems in translation. Students with French should read the poems I the original. Class discussion to be conducted in English; critical essays to be written in English.

2014-2015 Autumn

36200 Early-Modern Aesthetics and French Classicism

(FREN 36200)

Though “aesthetic” philosophy first developed as an autonomous field in the mid-eighteenth century, it has important roots in earlier seventeenth-century debates concerning literature and the arts. In the wake of Cartesian rationalism, could reasoned method be reconciled with non-rational creativity, or decorous order with the unruly “sublime”?  Just what kind of “truth” was revealed by poetry or painting?  We will consider the relation between literature and other media (including music, opera, and the visual arts) and gauge the impact of French classical criticism on the broader European scene, considering its reception and contestation in Britain, Italy, Spain and Germany.  Among the authors considered will be Descartes, Pascal, Boileau, Molière, Félibien, Du Bos, Addison, Hutcheson, Vico, Montesquieu, Diderot, and Herder.  Course conducted in English, but reading knowledge of French is required;  students  taking course for French credit must do all written work in French.

2014-2015 Autumn

26510/36510 Oulipo in Context

(FREN 26510/36510)

This course will examine the history and achievements of the Paris-based literary collective Oulipo, (Workshop for Potential Literature), from its founding as a secret society in 1960 to its expansion into an internationally visible group. We will consider the group's relationship to (and reaction against) earlier and contemporary avant-garde movements, the French new novel, and structuralism, and we will also examine the reception of Oulipian writing outside France. Readings will include collective publications by the group as well as works by Queneau, Perec, Roubaud, Calvino, Mathews, Grangaud, and others. A weekly session in French will be held for French majors and graduate students. Students seeking French credit must do the readings (where applicable) and writing in French.

2014-2015 Spring

26701/36701 Marsilio Ficino's "On Love"

(ITAL 33900,FNDL 21103,ITAL 23900)

This course is first of all a close reading of Marsilio Ficino’s seminal book On Love (first Latin edition De amore 1484; Ficino’s own Italian translation 1544). Ficino’s philosophical masterpiece is the foundation of the Renaissance view of love from a Neo-Platonic perspective. It is impossible to overemphasize its influence on European culture. On Love is not just a radically new interpretation of Plato’s Symposium. It is the book through which sixteenth- and seventeenth-century Europe read the love experience. Our course will analyze its multiple classical sources and its spiritual connotations. During our close reading of Ficino’s text, we will show how European writers and philosophers appropriated specific parts of this Renaissance masterpiece. In particular, we will read extensive excerpts from some important love treatises, such as Castiglione’s The Courtier (Il cortigiano), Leone Ebreo’s Dialogues on Love, Tullia d’Aragona’s On the Infinity of Love, but also selections from a variety of European poets, such as Michelangelo’s canzoniere, Maurice Scève’s Délie, and Fray Luis de León’s Poesía.

2014-2015 Autumn

27014/37014 Voices from the Iron House: Lu Xun’s Works

(EALC 27014/37014)

An exploration of the writings of Lu Xun (1881-1936), widely considered as the greatest Chinese writer of the past century. We will read short stories, essays, prose poetry and personal letters against the backdrop of the political and cultural upheavals of early 20th century China and in dialogue with important English-language scholarly works.

2014-2015 Winter

27701/37701 Imaginary Worlds: Fantastic & Magic Realism in Russia & Southeastern Europe

(SOSL 27700 / 37700,RUSS 27300,RUSS 37300)

In this course, we will ask what constitutes the fantastic and magic realism as literary genres while reading some of the most interesting writings to have come out of Russia and Southeastern Europe. While considering the stylistic and narrative specificities of this narrative mode, we also think about its political functions —from subversive to escapist, to supportive of a nationalist imaginary—in different contexts and at different historic moments in the two regions.

2014-2015 Spring

28101/38101 A Hero and a Fool: Don Quixote and its impact on art and literature

(SPAN 24202/34202,REMS 34202,SCTH 38250,FNDL 21211)

The course will study the most popular novel of Early Modern times, its heroic origins, its comedy, and its humanist message.  The adventures of Don Quixote on the dusty roads of La Mancha challenge the actual world in the name of a dream and mix the highest ideals with the humblest reality.  We will see how Cervantes’s novel dialogues with the narratives of its period and later play a major role in English, French, Russian, and Spanish fiction.  We will also examine and appreciate the silent omnipresence of Italian Renaissance art in this novel.The course will be taught in English.  Spanish majors will read the text in the original and use Spanish for course assignments. 

2014-2015 Spring

40500 Brechtian Representations: Theatre, Theory, Cinema

(ENGL 44500)

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)

2014-2015 Winter

41410 The Literary Life of Things in China

(EALC 41400)

This course investigates traditional literary strategies in China through which objects are depicted and animated. Our emphasis will be on reading in primary sources, but we’ll also draw on secondary sources from anthropology, the history of material culture, literary theory, and art history, both from within and outside China studies. Each week will introduce some basic genre and key literary works while also foregrounding certain conceptual issues. Ideally, students will select a case study to work on throughout the quarter, which will become their final research paper and which will also help orient their shorter class presentations. The choice of subject for the case study is quite open, so that each student can pursue a project that relates to his or her own central interests. It might be a cultural biography of a real object or class of objects; it might be a study of how objects are deployed in a novel or play, encyclopedia or connoisseurship manual, but there are many other possibilities.  

2014-2015 Winter

42503 Renaissance Humanism

(HIST 42503,CLAS 42514)

Humanism in the Renaissance was an ambitious project to repair what idealists saw as a fallen, broken world by reviving the lost arts of antiquity. Their systematic transformation of literature, education, art, religion, architecture, and science dramatically reshaped European culture, mixing ancient and medieval and producing the foundations of modern thought and society. Readings focus on primary sources: Petrarch, Poggio, Ficino, Pico, Castiglione, Machiavelli, and Thomas More, with a historiographical review of major modern treatments of the topic. We will consider such topics as the history of education, the history of science, the cultural and intellectual history, and the history of the book. The course will include hands-on work with manuscripts and early printed books with sessions on note-taking and other library and research skills. Flexible and self-directed writing assignments with a focus on advanced writing skills.PQ: Upper-level ugrads with consent of instructor. Students w/ Latin, Gk, Italian, French, Spanish, or German will have the opportunity to use them.

2014-2015 Spring

43357 Philosophy and Theology of Judaism

(PHIL 53357,HIJD 53357,DVPR 53357)

PQ: Reading knowledge of French is required. An examination of the works of some of the most significant twentieth-century philosophers of Judaism. In the first part of the seminar we will examine the philosophical, theological, and ethical foundations of Modern Orthodox Judaism. The principal readings will be Joseph B. Soloveitchik's The Emergence of Ethical Man and Aharon Lichtenstein's By His Light. The second part of the seminar will focus on the post World War II emergence of a new philosophy and theology of Judaism in France. Primary readings will come from Emmanuel Lévinas, Léon Askénazi, Alexandre Safran, and Henri Meschonnic. Special attention will be given to the relation between philosophical argument and analysis, and theological conception and method. 

2014-2015 Autumn

44624 Spectacle and Surveillance

Note: MA students require consent of instructor.Spectacle and surveillance have been central tactics in the production of political power since at least the early modern era, when the pageants of the Sun King, Louis XIV of France, were accompanied by the spies of Cardinal Richelieu, who kept careful watch for potential rebellion in the provinces. The British empire’s musterings of uniforms, ribbons, and banners in mass formations of loyal subjects were probably as important to the maintenance of imperial power as the actual mustering of armed conflict. At the same time, Jeremy Bentham’s panopticon envisioned a world of incarcerated subjects, all exposed to the gaze of power at all times.  How does it stand with the relation of spectacle and surveillance today, the age of total information storage, retrieval, and big data?  The overall purpose of this seminar will be to reflect on the dialectical pairing of spectacle and surveillance as modes of image power—that is, power over subjects in the case of spectacle, over objects in the case of surveillance—and as modes of governing in our contemporary age of Big Data. While we are interested in the history of this pairing in theoretical discourses on visual culture, politics, law, media, and iconology, our major emphasis will be on contextualizing and analyzing the present state of the surveillance/spectacle dynamic, as well as exploring all the forms of resistance.Readings will include Michel Foucault, Guy Debord, George Orwell, Glenn Greenwald and selected films dealing with surveillance and spectacle.

2014-2015 Winter

50104 Blood Libel: Damascus to Riyadh

(ISLM 41610)

This course examines the Blood-Libel from the thirteenth-century to the present, with special focus upon the Damascus Affair of 1840 and its repercussions in the modern Middle Eastern and European contexts and in polemics today among Muslims, Christians and Jews. We will review cases and especially upon literary and artistic representations of ritual murder and sacrificial consumption alleged to have been carried out by Waldensians, Fraticelli, witches, and Jews, with special attention to the forms of redemptive, demonic, and symbolic logic that developed over the course of the centuries and culminated in the wake of the Damascus Affair. Each participant will be asked to translate and annotate a sample primary text, ideally one that has not yet been translated into English, and to use that work as well in connection with a final paper.PQ: Willingness to work on a text from one of the following languages--Latin, German, French, Italian, Spanish, Polish, Hungarian, Russian, Arabic, Modern Greek, or Turkish--at whatever level of proficiency one has attained. This course fulfills the autumn core requirement for first year PhDs in Comparative Literature

2014-2015 Autumn

50203 Comparative Literary History

This seminar pursues a twofold agenda. First, we will survey the history of criticism and theoretical reflection on change, evolution, receptivity, and traditionality in literature. Second, we will debate how the writing of literary histories – whether national or comparative, form- or author-centered, “continuist” or period-based – can be approached today, and how such work may be useful for other kinds of literary scholarship. In addition to literary theorists, we will read pertinent work in cultural history, philosophy of history, and history of art. Texts discussed to include works by Hegel, Burckhardt, Veselovsky, Warburg, Benjamin, Tynianov, Bakhtin, Blumenberg, Jameson. This course fulfills the winter core requirement for first-year Ph.D. students in Comparative Literature.

2014-2015 Winter

21702 Nowhere Lands: Utopia, Dystopia, and Afterlife of Empire

Otherworldly, fantastic and futuristic spaces often offer a forum for social critique or a window into the formation of systems of knowledge. This course examines the ways in which the experiences of empire, revolution and globalization produced utopian and dystopian spaces that challenged the boundaries of the human and society. While utopia has a long history in European literature and thought, this course will focus on the ways in which space is constructed outside of the imperial centers of the west including a selection of novels and films from Eastern Europe, Central/West Asia and the Middle East.

2015-2016 Autumn

21704 Intercultural Adaptation: Kurosawa and his Russian Sources

(REES 29810)

Focusing on Akira Kurosawa’s cinematic adaptations of Dostoevsky’s novel The Idiot, Tolstoy’s short novel The Death of Ivan Ilyich, Gorky's drama "The Night Asylum," and Arseniev's travel narrative Dersu Uzala, we will analyze these texts and their film counterparts in the context of Japanese postwar cinema. The course is meant to provide hands-on training in the interdisciplinary methodology of Comparative Literature, through close analysis of films, texts, and their relationships.

2015-2016 Autumn

25014 Writing Towards Freedom: Slave Narratives and Emergent Black Writing

In the late 18th and 19th centuries, slave narratives were authored to convince Europeans of the injustices of slavery as an institution and the humanity of enslaved black Africans. However, these texts were more representative of anti-slavery rhetoric and conventional morals than the voices of enslaved men and women. In this course we will investigate many of the central slave narratives of 18th and 19th centuries in order to understand how these texts worked to redefine concepts of the human. We will also examine the ways slave narratives relied upon and bolstered norms of gender, family, and religion. Using comparative methods, this course will investigate why the overwhelming majority of slave narratives come from the Anglophone world. We will compare American and British narratives, and examine the genres used in the francophone and hispanophone worlds to demonstrate the rights of the enslaved, particularly law. Major texts to be examined will include The Interesting Life of Olaudah Equiano; The History of Mary Prince: A West Indian Slave; My Bondage, My Freedom by Frederick Douglass; Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl by Harriett Jacobs; and Autobiography of a Slave by Juan Francisco Manzano. Shorter readings would include excerpts from Saidiya Hartman, Michel Rolph Trouillot, The Memoires of Toussaint Louverture, and The Haitian Constitutions of 1801 and 1805.

2015-2016 Autumn

20225 Multilingualism and Translation in Modern Jewish Literature

(JWSC 20225)

Covering the period roughly between 1880 and 1980, this course touches on some of the transformations and upheavals that have formed modern Jewish culture: waves of migration, modernization, and assimilation; the rise of Jewish nationalism and the foundation of the State of Israel; and the Holocaust. Our driving questions will be: How do these different revolutions and upheavals influence the dynamic relations between the different languages in which Jews speak and write? What is the role of translation in Jewish culture? What do we learn from the Jewish case about language politics more broadly? How should we theorize and describe the monolingual ideologies that are dominant in the modern West? And how should we read bilingual literature?

2015-2016 Spring

24110 LOVE AND TRANSFORMATION

(ITAL 24110)

This course analyzes the multi-faceted relationship between the love experience and an inner process of psychological, spiritual, or physical transformation. What is the relationship between Eros and human identity? Are friendship and love two distinct experiences? We will investigate these essential topics from a philosophical, literary, and religious point of view. We will study a variety of texts from different cultural traditions. Among other texts, this course will examine Plato’s Symposium, Apuleius’ Metamorphoses, Dante’s Purgatory, selections from Giovambattista Basile The Tale of Tales, which is the first collection of fairy tales of the Western tradition, selections from Martin Buber’s fundamental I and Thou, Junichiro Tanizaki’s erotic novel The Key, and Elena Ferrante’s recent powerful Italian novelMy Brilliant Friend. The class will be conducted in English. All books are available in English. Students in Italian will read the Italian texts in the original Italian and will write their midterm and final paper in Italian.

2015-2016 Spring

25015 Allegory in the Western Literary Tradition

(CLCV 25015)

What kinds of power can a text have? Is it possible for language and literature to do far more than instruct and entertain? Indeed, might it be possible for a text to give us access to types of knowledge that a human being would otherwise be unable to obtain? In what ways can the study of allegory help us to better understand how (and why) other cultures interpret the world in ways that differ from our own? And how do we, as readers, respond when we reach the apparent limits of our texts?To ask such questions as these—particularly in the case of allegory—involves much more than asking what a text means. Indeed, although the question of meaning is fundamental to allegory, to view a text as allegorical is to view a text as possessing some kind of power or insight that can transform the way in which we view the world (or, even, the divine) and our relation to it. In fact, for generations of thinkers—from the earliest interpreters of Homer to the Early Modern Period and beyond—allegory represents literature at its most dynamic and powerful. The study of allegory and the history of its interpretation provides us, therefore, with the unique opportunity to examine how generations of authors and interpreters have pushed their respective arts to their limit, as if attempting to communicate with words an idea that, by its very nature, defies verbalization.Readings for this course will include the following: Plato’s Republic (in particular, the Allegory of the Cave), Virgil’s Aeneid, Chaucer’s dream-vision poetry, Edmund Spenser’s Faerie Queene, William Blake, and Italo Calvino.

2015-2016 Spring

28900 Health Care and the Limits of State Action

(BIOS 29323,BPRO 28600,HMRT 28602)

In a time of great human mobility and weakening state frontiers, epidemic disease is able to travel fast and far, mutate in response to treatment, and defy the institutions invented to keep it under control: quarantine, the cordon sanitaire, immunization, and the management of populations. Public health services in many countries find themselves at a loss in dealing with these outbreaks of disease, a deficiency to which NGOs emerge as a response (an imperfect one to be sure). Through a series of readings in anthropology, sociology, ethics, medicine, and political science, we will attempt to reach an understanding of this crisis of both epidemiological technique and state legitimacy, and to sketch out options.  Prerequisite(s): Third- or fourth-year standing. This course does not meet requirements for the biological sciences major.

2015-2016 Spring

29705 Intro to Comp. Lit II: Case Study: Davidismo

(RLST 26680,JWSC 28800)

This course will examine the story of David in 1 and 2 Samuel in combination with some of its myriad literary and artistic afterlives in order to explore the nature of biblical narrative and (biblical) rewriting. The narrative’s familial drama, political intrigue, subtle characterization, and philological challenges have inspired a wide variety of reinterpretations in disparate literary traditions and historical periods, providing fertile ground for comparative analysis. Students will initially gain some of the skills and perspectives needed to approach the biblical text in translation as a literary artifact as well as an appreciation of the difficulties inherent in such a task. Subsequently, students will engage with literary reworkings of the narrative organized around issues such as gender, political power, and Jewish/Christian identity-formation and accompanied by select theoretical works treating rewriting and intertextuality. Why has this story— and David himself— had such lasting resonance? How do later works from different periods and linguistic traditions both capitalize on certain aspects of the ‘original’ and redefine it in important ways? What role do rewritings play in literature, and what does it mean to read these distinct interpretations together? The David Story offers rich opportunities for thinking through these and other comparative literary questions. Literary works will include plays and novels by Tirso de Molina, Gide, Faulkner, Heym, Weil, and Kalisky as well as selections from NBC’s critically-acclaimed 2009 drama, Kings; theorists may include Curtius, Warburg, Tynianov, Genette, Ben-Porat, and Rabau, among others.

2015-2016 Spring

20222 Writing the Jewish Body: Health, Disease, Literature

(JWSC 20222)

This course investigates the representation of the Jewish body in twentieth-century prose. We will focus on the European, American and Israeli contexts, exploring how the figures of health and illness are mobilized as commentaries on Jewish identity. We will also consider how representations of physical strength, physiological frailty, contagion and susceptibility shift in different landscapes and in different languages, paying particular attention to such figures as the ailing shtetl dweller, the Central European Jewish patient and the Zionist “New Jew.” Readings include works by Mendele Mocher Sforim, Franz Kafka, Philip Roth and Orly Castel-Bloom in conversation with theoretical texts by Susan Sontag, Walter Benjamin and Arthur Kleinman. All readings are in English. A section may be organized for reading sources in Yiddish.

2015-2016 Winter

25960 The Archaeological Imagination

(ENGL 25960)

This course looks at the various ways in which the rise of archaeology provided writers, artists, and filmmakers with themes, characters, ideological frames, and philosophical problematics.  We will look at, among other things, Keats’ “Ode on a Grecian Urn”; Byron on the Elgin marbles; Egyptomania; Kipling’s “The Man Who Would Be King”; Hardy’s Tess; Michael Ondaatje’s The English Patient; Spielberg’s Raiders of the Lost Ark; Stone’s Alexander; and Ai Weiwei’s “Dropping a Han Dynasty Urn.”

2015-2016 Winter

29701 Intro to Comparative Lit I: Problems, Methods, Precedents

 As the study of relations among the world's literary and other expressive,traditions, comparative literature confronts a host of questions. What do,works from different times and places have in common? How can we meaningfully assess their differences? How do we account for systematic and extra-systemic features of literature? Is translation ever adequate? This course offers consideration of these and related issues through influential critical examples. This course is the first of a two-quarter sequence required for all majors in Comparative Literature.

2015-2016 Winter

38815/28815 Literature as Trial

(GRMN 28815,GRMN 38815)

The affinities between literary and judicial practice seem as old as literature itself. Countless literary works take the form of a trial, revolve around a case or trial scene, or negotiate competing ways of seeing and talking. What is the relationship between judgment and poetic form? Can "trial" be understood as a distinct form of discourse? What role can the literary play in the legal process? Is there a privileged relationship between the trial and the dramatic genre? Can literature be a training for judgment? Are there specifically poetic forms of justice? Readings include Sophocles, Dante, Shakespeare, Kleist, Kafka, Arendt, Weiss, Derrida, Coetzee.

2015-2016 Autumn

31221 Antigone(s)

(SCTH 31221,GREK 3/45808)

Antigone: heroine or harridan? Political dissident or family loyalist? Harbinger of the free subject or captive of archaic gender norms? Speaking truth to power or preserving traditional privilege? Sophocles’ Antigone has been good to think with since its first production in the fifth century BCE. From ancient commentators through Hegel to contemporary gender theorists like Judith Butler, readers have grappled with what Butler calls “Antigone’s Claim.” The play’s exploration of gender, kinship, citizenship, law, resistance to authority, family vs. the state, and religion (among other issues) has proved especially compelling for modern thought. We will supplement our reading of the play with modern commentary grounded in literary interpretation and cultural poetics, as well as philosophy and political theory. We will end by considering three modern re-imaginings of Antigone: Jeean Anouilh’s Antigone, Athol Fugard’s The Island, and Ellen McLaughlin’s Kissing the Floor. Although no knowledge of Greek is required for this course, there will be assignment options for those who wish to do reading in Greek. Requirements: weekly readings and posting on Chalk; class presentation; final paper.This class will be taught twice a week during the first five weeks of the quarter.

2015-2016 Spring

21703/31703 The Politics of Hybridity

This course will explore the construct of hybridity through the development of anticolonial and postcolonial theory. In nuancing the distinction between these intellectual traditions and their respective formations in the contexts of decolonization, the Cold War and the US Academy, we will consider the work of Fanon, Césaire, C.L.R. James, Said, Spivak, Young, Bhabha, Glissant, Khatibi and others.

2015-2016 Winter

21705/31705 The Novel-Essay and its Past: From Artsybashev's Sanin to Musil’s Man Without Qualities

(REES 29811,GRMN 22716/32716)

Two important examples of the the “novel-essay” or “novel of ideas”, Mikhail Artsybashev’s Sanin and Robert Musil's Man Without Qualities will be discussed in the light of the theory of the novel and in comparison with the genre of philosophical essays.  We will also consider the role of the narrator in modernist fiction.  

2015-2016 Spring

23310/33310 Classical Art in the Literature of Renaissance &Early Modern Italy, Spain and France

(SPAN 23300,SPAN 33300)

As classical statues emerged from the ground as if they were corpses revived by ancient necromancers, delight and curiosity concerning these artistic findings spread from Renaissance Italy to the rest of Europe. Even so, there was one aspect that was missing. The great paintings of antiquity were mostly lost due to their fragility. Only some of the wall paintings of later periods remained. Thus, the names and works of famous Greek painters came to be known mainly through Pliny´s Natural History. This course will focus on three of these painters whose works, although destroyed, are preserved in writing and ekphrasis: Apelles, Timanthes and Zeuxis. We will investigate how they come to be painted and described anew in the art and literature of the Renaissance and Early Modern periods, from Vasari to Rubens; and from Boscán and Tirso de Molina to Cervantes and Montaigne. Although the course is taught in English, students need to have a reading knowledge of Spanish.

2015-2016 Spring

34505 The Bakhtin Mystery: Text, Context, and Authorship

(REES 33147)

The Bakhtin Circle was an informal alliance of several young thinkers, formed amid the tumult of the Russian revolution, swiftly forced into silence after a brief efflorescence in the 1920s, and rediscovered with aplomb in the 1960s. Despite their broad influence in recent decades, basic issues of authorship, originality and coherence continue to dominate scholarship on Bakhtin and his colleagues. We will survey the corpus of texts originating in the Bakhtin Circle, not only those published under the name of Mikhail Bakhtin, but also the explicitly Marxist texts published under the names of Pavel Medvedev and Valentin Voloshinov but frequently attributed to Bakhtin. At issue in the course is not only the historiography and interpretation of the Bakhtin corpus, but also the origins of critical theory, the dynamics of theoretical collaboration, and methods of attribution. We will also be interested in the potential that these writings hold for constructing a viable theory of literary forms today. Our first task will be to establish the sources, contexts and development of Bakhtin's early work, including "Toward a Philosophy of the Act," "Art and Answerability" and Problems of Dostoevsky's Art. We will then examine the works published by Medvedev and Voloshinov, using the mystery of their authorship to frame questions concerning the organization of intellectual activity (including authorship) in a revolutionary situation and the role of the Bakhtin Circle in the development of critical theory in the West (especially via the mediation of Raymond Williams and Fredric Jameson). We will then proceed to an examination of major concepts in Bakhtin's later work, including chronotope and carnival. Students will collaborate on the creation of a web-based glossary of major terms of the Bakhtin Circle, as the germ of a larger project. All texts are available in English translation.

2015-2016 Winter

38300 Theories of Narrative

(CLAS 38315,REES 33158)

This class serves as an introduction to critical approaches to narrative, story-telling, and discourse analysis. While the emphasis will be on the Formalist-Structuralist tradition (Shklovsky, Propp, Tomashevsky, Jakobson, Benveniste, Barthes, Genette), we will also discuss works by Plato, Aristotle, Bakhtin, Benjamin, Auerbach, Pavel, Banfield, Silverstein, and others. Part of our task will be to test these approaches against narratives produced in different genres and historical periods (authors will include Pindar, Apuleius, Pushkin, Leskov, and Nabokov). Students will have the option of either writing a research paper or doing a final exam. Required books for this class are: V. Propp, The Morphology of the Folktale (Austin: U. of Texas Press); G. Genette, Narrative Discourse: An Essay in Method (Ithaca: Cornell UP); R. Barthes, S/Z (New York: Hill and Wang).

2015-2016 Spring

38810 Empire, Slavery, and Salvation: Writing Difference in the Colonial Americas

(SPAN 38810,LACS 38810)

This course explores portrayals of human difference in literature, travel writing, painting, and autobiography from Iberia, England, and the Americas. Students will become versed in debates surrounding the emergence of human distinctions based on religion, race, and ethnicity in the early modern Atlantic.

2015-2016 Spring

29302/39302 South Asian Aesthetics: Rasa to Rap, Kamasutra to Kant

(SALC 29300,SALC 49300)

This course introduces students to the rich traditions of aesthetic thought in South Asia, a region that includes (among others) the modern-day states of India, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Nepal and Sri Lanka. By engaging with theories of art, literature and music from the Indic and Indo-Persian traditions, we will attempt to better understand what happens in an aesthetic experience. A central concern will be thinking about how much any aesthetic tradition, be it South Asian or other, is rooted in the particular epistemic and cultural values of the society that produced it; we will therefore explore how ideas from the South Asian tradition can help us to understand not only South Asian material, but art in other societies as well, and to re-think the boundaries of 'aesthetic' thought.  Class discussion, small group work, and individual presentations will be regular features of the class. Two sessions will include performances by, and discussions with, performing artists (dancers and musicians). We will also make one visit to the Art Institute Chicago.

2015-2016 Spring

41204 Approaches to Teaching Comparative Literature II

This course explores approaches and curricula related to teaching Comparative Literature in different university and college settings. We will begin with discussing course objectives and how these are related to the missions of institutions, programs of study, student demographics, as well as the specificities of handling literary texts. Next, we will hold a series of genre-specific sessions to familiarize ourselves with the kinds of texts we may be expected to teach, while practicing skills such as leading discussion, designing assignments, and organizing class time. Lastly, we will discuss ways to reflect on and convey our personal teaching methods through teaching statements and portfolios.We will hold two syllabus workshop sessions. Towards the beginning of the quarter, we will discuss introductory, survey-style syllabi at various institutions. At the end of the quarter, we will each produce and workshop a self-designed syllabus tailored to our own research and pedagogical interests.The overall goal of the course is to prepare participants to teach in a post-secondary setting by deepening our understanding of what practices constitute effective teaching, and by producing documents related to the teaching of college-level courses.Note: This course will meet for 20 hours during the quarter in order to count towards the Certificate in University Teaching offered through the Chicago Center for Teaching (CCT). Since part of this course involves critical reflection on teaching, it is only open to those students who have previously taught at the college-level in some capacity, either as a course assistant or standalone instructor

2015-2016 Spring

42804 Aeschylus and the Birth of Drama

(CLAS 42815)

In this advanced seminar we will undertake an in-depth study of different aspects of the surviving corpus of Aeschylus (including meter, dialect, narrative, thematics, plot-construction, and ritual context), while placing it in a comparative context of early forms of drama and varieties of choral performance attested across the world. In addition to discussing all of Aeschylus’s surviving works in English translation, we will read at least two of his plays in Greek (most likely, Agamemnon and Seven Against Thebes). We will also read important scholarship on Aeschylus. Advanced knowledge of Greek is a prerequisite.

2015-2016 Spring

43351 Poetry and Theory: Mallarmé

(DVPR 43351,FREN 43351)

This course will undertake a close reading (in French) of seminal texts (essays and translation as well as poems) by Mallarmé. We will also read older critical interpretations (Mauron, Sartre, H. Friedrich, Robert Greer Cohn, Scherer, J-P Richard, Poulet, eg) and more contemporary theorists (Derrida, Blanchot, De Man, Jameson, Johnson, Kristeva, Rancière, bersani, Zizek). Finally, we will read him in conjunction with some other, more or less overtly philosophical texts (Heidegger, Badiou, Nietzsche, Meschonnic, e.g.). Reading knowledge of French is REQUIRED, though the course will be conducted in English.

2015-2016 Spring

50105 Literary Criticism from Plato to Burke

(ENGL 52502)

This seminar will explore Western literary criticism from Plato to the late eighteenth-century conceived of as a prehistory of comparative literature as a discipline.  The course will take as its particular lens the critical treatment of epic in some of the following authors: Plato, Aristotle, Longinus, Horace, Montaigne, Tasso, Giraldi, Sidney, Boileau, Le Bossu, St. Evremond, Dryden, Addison, Voltaire, Fielding, 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 with an eye to continuities and discontinuities in critical method and goals. 

2015-2016 Autumn

50200 Seminar: Catharsis & Other Aesthetic Responses

(ENGL 59304)

This seminar examines the ramifications of catharsis, tedium and other responses to texts and images, in other words it investigates the relationship between effect and affect. Beginning with Aristotle and present day responses to catharsis, we will investigate the kinds of aesthetic response invoked by tragic drama and theory (esp Hegel), realism (Lukacs, Bazin and Brecht), as well as theories of pleasure (Barthes, Derrida) and tedium (Heidegger and again Barthes). We will conclude with a test case, exploring the potential and limitations of catharsis as an appropriate response to the textual and cinematic representation of trauma and reckoning in post dictatorship Chile, particularly through the critical work of Tomas Moulián and Nelly Richard.  The focus will be on theoretical texts but some reference will be made to literary and cinematic material by Sophocles, Shakespeare, Brecht, Renoir, and Guzmán. Because an essential part of the discussion will be the problem of translating key terms from one language to another as well as from one theoretical discourse and/or medium to another, the seminar is reserved for PhD students with a working knowledge of one or more of the following languages: French, German, Spanish and/or classical Greek.

2015-2016 Spring

50201 Seminar: Contemporary Critical Theory

(DVPR 50201)
2015-2016 Winter

56702 Postcolonial Constellations

(ENGL 66702)

This course trains graduate-level students in postcolonial theory and literature, and it contends that we can best understand postcolonial studies neither in terms of a canon of literary works nor in terms of a discrete historical moment but as a set of key questions and debates that have shaped methods of literary and cultural interpretation and intellectual inquiry over the three decades in which postcolonial literary and culture studies have coalesced (and now, perhaps disintegrated) as a field. We will consider topics such as writing and resistance, postcolonial literary revisions, mimicry and hybridity, and gender. We will also consider whether “postcolonial literature” as a category has a future in the discipline of English literary studies, particularly in light of the ongoing sense of crisis theorists in the field have identified and the ascendance of terms such as “planetarity,” “global Anglophone literature,” and “world literature.” What is the status of the global in the postcolonial, and vice-versa? What is gained or lost when we revise or abandon the term postcolonial? What conceptual significance does the nation-state retain when we talk about global literature?Authors and critics will include Emily Apter, Homi Bhabha, Aimé Césaire, Dipesh Chakrabarty, Michelle Cliff, Frantz Fanon, Leela Gandhi, Édouard Glissant, Mohsin Hamid, Bessie Head, Isabel Hofmeyr, C.L.R. James, Achille Mbembe, Walter Mignolo, V.S. Naipaul, Ngugi wa Thiong’o, Michael Ondaatje, Edward Said, David Scott, W.G. Sebald, and Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak, among others.

2015-2016 Spring

20505 Monstrosity and the Monstrous

This course centers on the relationship between literature and science by focusing on the figure of the monster. The human imagination can produce the most outlandish forms: we will call this the monstrous. Natural philosophy and science, on the other hand, have to deal with the deformed, the organically distorted, the preternatural: we will call this monstrosity. Both concepts can spark thrilling debates on identity and difference, divine providence and chance, fear and lust, gender, race, and more. In a journey that takes us from antiquity to the 21st century, we will be looking at ancient history and literature, Medieval bestiaries, Renaissance scientific treatises, plays, nineteen and twentieth-century novels, evolutionary biology, theory, philosophy, and film.

2016-2017 Spring

20510 Translation and Translation Theory

Translation is one of the central mechanisms of literary creativity. This course will consider translation both concretely and theoretically. Topics to be discussed will include semantic and grammatical interference, loss and gain, the production of difference, pidgin, translationese, bilingualism, self-translation, code-switching, translation as metaphor, foreignization vs. nativization, and distinct histories of translation.

2016-2017 Spring

25103 Thomas Mann’s Novel, Joseph and His Brothers

(FNDL 25100,GRMN 25117,RLST 28215)

Thomas Mann’s novel Joseph and His Brothers, a modern rewriting of the biblical story, was written over sixteen years (1926 - 1943) that shook German and European history through the assumption of power by the National Socialist party and the Second World War. Mann began the novel under the Weimar Republic and continued working on the novel in exile. The writer himself saw his novel as an act of resistance to his country’s anti-Semitic policies. In this course, we will closely read the novel, explore its relation to its biblical and other sources, learn about the history of its writing and publication and contextualize its genesis in Mann’s complicated involvement with German and world politics.

2016-2017 Spring

25302 Fashion and Modernity

 The relationship between fashion and modernity has always been taken for granted. Indeed, it is guaranteed in the very etymology of the French and German words “mode” and “modernité”. Yet, on closer inspection, there is a blind spot in this relation in that fashion seems rather to be the Other of modernity than modernity itself, an Oriental colony in the heart of the West.The modern discourse of fashion testifies to the ambivalences and paradoxes in this relationship. From the beginning of the modern world until now, it is strangely split: there is fashion and fashion. Properly speaking, men’s fashion is not really fashionable. The perfectly functional suit without superfluous adornment is, in its world-wide constancy through the centuries, almost invariably classical. Its staggering universal success is due to the fact that it is the ideal modern dress: beautiful, because functional. Women’s fashion, on the contrary, is a remnant of the old, effeminate aristocracy – a frivolous frill, an all-in-all dysfunctional ornament, badly in need of thorough modernization. The „new woman“ is born in agonizing pain and perpetual fallbacks: while Chanel almost lead us toward a functional feminine form, Dior’s new look was, from this perspective, a setback: it brought back the unhealthy, restrictive corset and offered a slap in the face to the modern aesthetic dogma of „form follows function“. Fashion therefore seems to be the locus of a strange intimation of the political set against the common politics of modernity.By reading texts form Friedrich Nietzsche to Adolf Loos and Thorstein Veblen, Rousseau to Baudelaire, from Gautier, Zola and Apollinaire to Simone de Beauvoir and Pierre Bourdieu,  the course will center around this blind spot between fashion and modernity and the new gendering of fashion in the bourgeois, post-feudal era.

2016-2017 Spring

25801 Machiavelli and Machiavellism

(=FNDL 21603,ITAL 23000,REMS 33001)

This course is a comprehensive introduction to Machiavelli's The Prince in light of his vast and varied literary corpus and European reception. The course includes discussion of Machiavelli as playwright ( The Mandrake ); fiction writer ( Belfagor , The Golden Ass ); and historian ( Discourses , Florentine Histories ). We also closely investigate the emergence of myths surrounding Machiavelli (Machiavellism and anti-Machiavellism) in Italy (Guicciardini, Botero, Boccalini); France (Bodin and Gentillet); Spain (Ribadeneyra); and Northern Europe (Hobbes, Grotius, Spinoza) during the Counter Reformation and beyond. Classes conducted in English. Students who are majoring or minoring in Italian do all work in Italian.

2016-2017 Spring

The Task of the Self Translator

(NEHC 30659)

We usually think of the translator as a mediator, the figure who allows authors and texts to speak to audiences beyond their original language. Consequently, the questions we tend to ask about translation revolve around the central issue of fidelity. Is the translation adequate to the original? Has it remained faithful? In this model, the origin and the target are both assumed to be monolingual and the translator is the bilingual go-between. But there are very few, if any, truly monolingual cultures, and translations usually circulate in a far more complex manner. In this seminar, we will turn to the self-translator as a figure who challenges conventional models of translation and cross-cultural circulation. Can the author betray herself in the act of translation? To approach this issue, we will read classical texts in translation theory as well as more recent work that thematizes self translation, and we will look at literary texts written by bilingual authors and constituted by self-translation.

2016-2017 Winter

20109 Comparative Methods in the Humanities

This course introduces the models of comparative analysis across national literatures, genres, and media. The texts to be discussed include Orson Welles’s “Citizen Kane” and Coleridge’s poem “Kubla Khan”; Benjamin’s “The Storyteller,” Kafka’s “Josephine the Mouse Singer,” Deleuze and Guattari, Kafka: Toward a Minor Literature, and Mario Vargas Llosa’s The Storyteller; Victor Segalen’s Stèles; Fenollosa and Pound’s “The Chinese Character as a Medium of Poetry” and Eliot Weinberger’s Nineteen Ways of Looking at Wang Wei; Mérimée, “Carmen,” Bizet, Carmen, and the film adaptation U-Carmen e-Khayelitsha (South Africa, 2005); Gorky’s and Kurosawa’s “Lower Depths;” Molière, Tartuffe, Dostoevsky, The Village Stepanchikovo and its Inhabitants, and Bakhtin, “Discourse in the Novel”; Gogol, The Overcoat, and Boris Eikhenbaum, “How Gogol’s Overcoat Is Made.”

2016-2017 Winter

26002 Gramsci

(ITAL 2/36000,REMS 36000,FNDL 26206)

In this course we read selections from Antonio Gramsci’s Letters and Prison Notebooks side by side with their sources. Gramsci’s influential interpretations of the Italian Renaissance, Risorgimento, and Fascism are reviewed testi alla mano with the aim of reassessing some major turning points in Italian intellectual history. Readings and notions introduced include, for the Renaissance, Petrarch (“the cosmopolitan intellectual”), Savonarola (the “disarmed prophet”), Machiavelli (the “modern prince”), and Guicciardini (the “particulare”); for Italy’s “long Risorgimento,” Vico (“living philology”), Cuoco (“passive revolution”), Manzoni (“questione della lingua”), Gioberti (“clericalism”), and De Sanctis (the “Man of Guicciardini”); and Croce (the “anti-Croce”) and Pirandello (theater and “national-popular” literature), for Italy’s twentieth century. Taught in English or Italian, depending on language skills of enrolled students.

2016-2017 Winter

35017/25017 Islams and Modernities

This course explores the topic of political Islam in Russia, the Caucasus and Central Asia with an eye on the emergence of similar discourses globally through historical, anthropological, and literary works produced both by contemporary scholars of Islam (Fazlur Rahman, Olivier Roy, Talal Asad) scholars of Islam in the Russian empire (Adeeb Khaled, Alexandre Benningsen, Ayse-Azade Rorlich) as well as nineteenth and twentieth century thinkers (Ismail Gasprinsky, Sultan Galiev) alongside literary and artistic works (the satirical journal Molla Nasreddin, Umm El-Banine Assadoulaeff, Chingiz Aitmatov, Hamid Ismailov). The course focuses on the ways in which these works problematize the relationship between the representation of ethno-linguistic discourses of Muslim identity (including Pan-Turkism, Pan-Islamism, Jadidism) to national and supranational discourses of modernity and women's rights formulated both during the formation of the Soviet Union and the post-Soviet national republics. Reading knowledge of Russian, French or Azeri Turkic is encouraged but not required.

2016-2017 Winter

20226/30226 Jewish Literature in a Century of Transformation: 1880-1980

(JWSC 20226,NEHC 20226)

A survey of Jewish Literature written by Jews around the globe in different languages (including Hebrew, Yiddish, Arabic, Russian, English, Polish, German) in an era of upheaval and transformation. We will discuss the literary representation of phenomena such as: the national movement and the foundation of the State of Israel; persecutions, pogroms and the Holocaust; waved of migration, acculturation and assimilation; the involvement of Jews in political movements, such as communism and anarchism; changing gender roles and changing ideas about the Jewish family. And we will ask: how have these events - and the modern era that they are a part of - influenced ideas about literary representation and the relationship between literature and history. 

2016-2017 Autumn

20905/30905 Literatures of “Eurasia”

(=HIST 23603 / HIST 33603 / REES 29812 / NELC 20705/30705)

This course explores literatures produced across Eurasia, with a particular focus on the Caucasus and Central Asia including the writings of Lermontov, Blok, Gorodetsky, Solovyov, Memmedquluzadeh, Iskender, Aitmatov, as well as the films of Paradjanov and Ibragimbekov. We will also trace the intellectual history of the orientalist conception of Eurasianism and its variants including conceptions of race and ethnicity that it produced. In this way, we will attend to connections forged between Eurasianist ideologies and conceptions of language, geography and biology. 

2016-2017 Autumn

21101/31101 Roman Elegy

(LATN 31100 / 21100)

This course examines the development of the Latin elegy from Catullus to Ovid. Our major themes are the use of motifs and topics and their relationship to the problem of poetic persona.

2016-2017 Winter

23301/33301 Balkan Folklore

(REES 29009/39009,NEHC 20568/30568,ANTH 25908/35908)

Vampires, fire-breathing dragons, vengeful mountain nymphs. 7/8 and other uneven dance beats, heart-rending laments and a living epic tradition. This course is an overview of Balkan folklore from historical, political and anthropological, perspectives. We seek to understand folk tradition as a dynamic process and consider the function of different folklore genres in the imagining and maintenance of community and the socialization of the individual. We also experience this living tradition first-hand through visits of a Chicago-based folk dance ensemble, “Balkan Dance.”

2016-2017 Winter

23302/33302 Kurosawa and his Literary Sources

(EALC 23312/33312,REES 29814/39814,SCTH 34012)

This interdisciplinary graduate and advanced undergraduate course focuses on ten films of Akira Kurosawa which were based on literary sources ranging from Ryunosuke Akutagawa, Georges Simenon, and Shakespeare to Dostoevsky, Tolstoy, Gorky, and Arseniev. The course not only introduces some theoretical and intermedial problems of adaptation of literature to film but also address cultural and political implications of Kurosawa’s adaptation of classic and foreign sources. We will study how Kurosawa’s turn to literary adaptation provided a vehicle for circumventing social taboos of his time and offered a screen for addressing politically sensitive and sometimes censored topics of Japan’s militarist past, war crimes, defeat in the Second World War, and ideological conflicts of reconstruction. The course combines film analysis with close reading of relevant literary sources, contextualized by current work of political, economic, and cultural historians of postwar Japan. The course is meant to provide hands-on training in the interdisciplinary methodology of Comparative Literature.Cross-Listed with East Asian Studies and Committee on Social Thought. 

2016-2017 Spring

23401/33401 Burden of History: The Nation and Its Lost Paradise

(REES 29013/39013,NEHC 2/30573,HIST 2/34005)

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).

2016-2017 Spring

24017/34017 Fact and Fiction: Hoaxes and Misunderstandings

This course will focus on fictional texts that readers have misrecognized as factual accounts, as well as the less frequent case of factual texts misidentified as fictional. Students will study the rhetorical strategies or historical and cultural circumstances responsible for these “errors of pragmatic framing” (O. Caïra) by investigating the contexts governing the production or reception of works such as Apuleius’ The Golden Ass, Les Lettres d’une religieuse portugaise, Denis Diderot’s La Religieuse, Wolfgang Hildesheimer’s Marbot: A Biography, and Orson Welles’ adaptation of The War of the Worlds, among others.

2016-2017 Spring

25002/35002 Gender and the Body in Yiddish Literature

(YDDH 25002/35002)

This course examines gender, race, and dis/ability in texts drawn from across the breadth of Yiddish literature. Using critical theory as a lens into the world of Yiddish writing, we will encounter medieval troubadours and healers, spirit possession, feminist performance art, and more. With an emphasis on poetry, the syllabus begins with some of the earliest known Yiddish verse (c. 1382) and concludes with the 20th century avant-garde. Literary authors include Peretz Markish, Meyshe Kulbak, and Dvoyre Fogel. Theoretical and historical studies include the work of Eve Sedgwick, Mel Chen, and Alexis Pauline Gumbs.No prior knowledge of Yiddish is required for enrollment. All course literature for the seminar will be available in English translation. An additional weekly session will meet to read Yiddish texts in the original.

2016-2017 Spring

35210 Theories of Autobiography

Ambiguous and elusive by definition, the autobiographical genre has attracted generations of critics determined to identify its specificity and define its boundaries. Throughout the course we will examine the main theories relevant to the study of autobiography, reflecting at the same time on various problematic aspects of the genre that literary theorists have long discussed: the pitfalls of personal identity, the presumption of pronouncing one’s final words when one’s life is not yet over, the untruthful mediation of writing, and the paradoxes of memory. We will focus our inquiries to the English, French and Italian contexts, analyzing in particular the theories developed by Gusdorf, Starobinski, Lejeune, Ricœur, De Man, Olney, Battistini, D’Intino. Part of our task will be to test these approaches against narratives produced in different historical periods.

2016-2017 Autumn

36015 The New Criticism

(SCTH 36015 / ENGL)

  
 

An examination of primary works of The New Criticism, British and American. We will consider the theoretical variety and different critical practices of these loosely allied critics, who were often not allies at all. Authors to be studied: I.A. Richards, T.S. Eliot, F.R. Leavis, Kenneth Burke, John Crowe Ransom, Cleanth Brooks, Robert Penn Warren, W.K. Wimsatt, Yvor Winters, R. P. Blackmur, William Empson.

2016-2017 Spring

2677/36750 Shakespeare's History Plays

(ENGL 16550 / 36550)

This course on Shakespeare's English history plays will adopt an unusual stratagem of reading the plays in order of the historical events they depict: that is, starting with King John, who ruled England from 1199 until his death in 1216, then (after a sizable interval of time devoted to the reigns of Henry III, 1216-1272, Edward I, 1272-1307, Edward II, 1307-1327, and Edward III, 1327-1377, not dramatized by Shakespeare), Richard II (reigned 1377-1390), Henry IV Parts I and II (1399-1413), Henry V (1413-1422), Henry VI Parts I-III (1422-1461 and 1470-1471, alternating with Edward IV, 1461-1470, 1471-1483), Richard III (1483-1485), and finally Henry VIII (1509-1547, having succeeded his father, Henry VII, who reigned from 1485-1509 and whose reign is not celebrated by a Shakespeare play). The emphasis will be on the great plays, Richard II, Henry IV Parts 1 and II, Henry V, and Richard III. My hope is that this approach will enable us to explore Shakespeare's concept of English history over a large sweep of time, leading up to the Tudor dynasty that began with Henry VII's victory over Richard III in 1485 and concluded with the long and successful reign of Elizabeth I, Henry VIII's daughter, whose rule ended with her death in 1603, soon after Shakespeare had completed his writing of all these plays except Henry VIII. We will be reading the plays in the order in which they were printed in the first complete edition of Shakespeare works in the 1623 First Folio. Undergraduate:(D, E) Graduate:(Med/Ren)

2016-2017 Autumn

26902/36902 Strangers to Ourselves: Twentieth Century Émigré Literature and Film from Russia and South Eastern Europe

(SOSL 2/36900)

“Being alienated from myself, as painful as that may be, provides me with that exquisite distance within which perverse pleasure begins, as well as the possibility of my imagining and thinking,” writes Julia Kristeva in Strangers to Ourselves, the book from which this course takes its title. The authors whose works we are going to examine often alternate between nostalgia and the exhilaration of being set free into the breathless possibilities of new lives. Leaving home does not simply mean movement in space. Separated from the sensory boundaries that defined their old selves, immigrants inhabit a warped, fragmentary, disjointed time. Immigrant writers struggle for breath – speech, language, voice, the very stuff of their craft resounds somewhere else. Join us as we explore the pain, the struggle, the failure and the triumph of emigration and exile. Vladimir Nabokov, Joseph Brodsky, Marina Tsvetaeva, Nina Berberova, Julia Kristeva, Alexander Hemon, Dubravka Ugrešić, Norman Manea, Miroslav Penkov, Ilija Trojanow, Tea Obreht

2016-2017 Autumn

27701/37701 Imaginary Worlds: The Fantastic and Magic Realism from Russia and Southeastern Europe

(SOSL 2/37700,RUSS 2/37300)

In this course, we will ask what constitutes the fantastic and magic realism as literary genres while reading some of the most interesting writings to have come out of Russia and Southeastern Europe. While considering the stylistic and narrative specificities of this narrative mode, we also think about its political functions —from subversive to escapist, to supportive of a nationalist imaginary—in different contexts and at different historic moments in the two regions.

2016-2017 Spring

28240/38240 Beautiful Souls, Adventurers and Rogues. The European 18th Century Novel

(SCTH 38240,FREN 25301/35301)

The course will examine several major 18th-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.
 
The course is taught in English.  A biweekly session in French will be held for majors and graduate students in French and Comp Lit.

2016-2017 Winter

40010 Ruins

(CDIN 40010,ARTH 40010,RLIT 40010)

“Ruins” will cover texts and images, from Thucydides to WWII, via the Reformation. We will include films (e.g. Rossellini’s “Germany Year Zero”), art (e.g. H. Robert, Piranesi) archaeology, the museum (Soane).  On ruins writing, we will read Thucydides, Pausanias from within antiquity, the Enlightenment responses to the destruction and archaeological rediscovery of Pompeii, Diderot, Simmel, Freud on the mind as levels of ruins (Rome) and the analysis as reconstructive archaeologist as well as on the novel Gradiva and the Acropolis, the Romantic obsession with ruins, and the firebombing in WWII. We will also consider the photographing of ruins, and passages from the best-known works on photography (Benjamin, Sontag, Ritchen, Fried, Azoulay). The goal is to see how ruin gazing, and its depictions (textual, imagistic, photographic, etc.) change from the ancients (Greek and Roman), to the Romantic use of ruins as a source of (pleasurable) melancholy, to the technological “advances” in targeting and decimating civilian populations that describe the Second Word War.

2016-2017 Spring

42416 The Debt Drive: Philosophy, Psychoanalysis, Neoliberalism

(GRMN 42416)

Debt has become a paramount topic of discussion and controversy in recent times, fuelled by the financial crisis of 2008 and the different episodes of the sovereign debt crisis in Europe, above all involving Greece. This has produced a great deal of commentaries, economic analyses, and journalistic polemics from all sides of the political spectrum. Yet despite this profusion of discourse, it still proves difficult to seize the exact contours of the problem. Debt affects both the most isolated individuals and the most powerful states, it is equally a matter of “cold” economic rationality and the “hottest” emotions and moral judgments, it appears at once as the most empirical thing with the hardest material consequences and as a mysterious, ethereal, abstract, and purely speculative entity (the unreal product of financial “speculation”). The concept of indebtedness not only characterizes an increasingly universal economic predicament, but also defines a form of subjectivity central to our present condition. This seminar will examine the problem of debt by first looking at how different approaches to it—economic, anthropological, and psychodynamic—were formed by Marx, Nietzsche, and Freud, and then reading more contemporary authors on the theme, including Deleuze and Guattari, Foucault, Graeber, and Lazzarato.

2016-2017 Autumn

48616 Hölderlin and the Greeks

(GRMN 48616,CLAS 48616)

The German poet Friedrich Hölderlin submitted to the paradoxical double-bind of Johann Joachim Winckelmann’s injunction that “the only way for us [Germans] to become great or — if this is possible — inimitable, is to imitate the ancients.” As he wrote in his short essay “The standpoint from which we should consider antiquity,” Hölderlin feared being crushed by the originary brilliance of his Greek models (as the Greeks themselves had been), and yet foresaw that modern European self-formation must endure the ordeal of its encounter with the Greek Other. The faculty of the imagination was instrumental to the mediated self-formation of this Bildung project, for imagination alone was capable of making Greece a living, vitalizing, presence on the page. Our seminar will therefore trace the work of poetic imagination in Hölderlin’s texts: the spatiality and mediality of the written and printed page, and their relation to the temporal rhythms of lived experience. All texts will be read in English translation, but a reading knowledge of German and/or Greek would be desirable. C. Wild and M. Payne.

2016-2017 Autumn

50106 Literary Theory: Pre-Modern, Non-Western, Not Exclusively Literary

Readings in theories of literature and related arts from cultures other than those of the post-1900 industrialized regions. What motivated reflection on verbal art in Greece, Rome, early China, early South Asia, and elsewhere? Rhetoric, hermeneutics, commentary, allegory, and other modes of textual analysis will be approached through source texts, using both originals and translations. Authors to be considered include Confucius, Plato, Aristotle, Zhuangzi, Sima Qian, Augustine, Liu Xie, Abhinavagupta, Dante, Li Zhi, Rousseau, Lessing, Schlegel, and Saussure.

2016-2017 Autumn

50201 Contemporary Critical Theory

This course will examine some of the salient texts of postmodernism. Part of the question of the course will be the status and meaning of “post”-modern, post-structuralist. The course requires active and informed participation.This course fulfills the winter core requirement for first-year Ph.D. students in Comparative Literature.

2016-2017 Winter

50805 Textual Knowledge and Authority: Biblical and Chinese Literature

(BIBL 50805/KNOW 40401)

Ancient writers and their patrons exploited the textual medium, the virtual reality it can evoke and the prestige it can command to promote certain categories of knowledge and types of knowers. This course will survey two ancient bodies of literature, Hebrew and Chinese, for the figures they advance, the perspectives they configure, the genres they present, and the practices that developed around them, all in a dynamic interplay of text and counter-text. Excerpts from Hebrew literature include (a) royal wisdom in Proverbs & Ecclesiastes; (b) divine law in Exodus 19–24, Deuteronomy, the Temple Scroll, and Pesharim. Readings from Chinese literature include (c) speeches from the Shang shu (Book of Documents), (d) odes from the Shi jing (Book of Songs), and (e) commentaries from Han to Qing periods that elucidate, often in contradictory terms, the law-giving properties of these texts.

2016-2017 Autumn

26305/54855 Civil War and Literature

The topic of Civil war has massivly resurfaced in literature after the Second World War. Interestingly, it comes back in the Roman disguise that had dominated already the 19th, and a fortiori the 20th and 21th centuries. How  can one narrate the total dis-integration of society that is civil war? We will look at Claude Simon’s novel Georgiques and Michel Houellebecq’s novel Soumission. But we will also go back ad fontes with Vergil’s poem Georgiques and the last book of the Aeneid. To understand the principle of this translatio Romae, we will take a look into Karl Marx’s The 18th Brumaire of Napoléon Bonaparte.

2016-2017 Spring

59306 Performance Theory: Action, Affect, Archive

(TAPS 59306 / CMST 62202 / ENGL 59306)

This PhD seminar offers a critical introduction to performance theory and its applications not only to theatre but also to performance on film and, more controversially, to ‘performativity’ to fictional and other texts that have nothing directly to do with performance.  The seminar will be organized around three key conceptual clusters:a) action, acting, and other forms of production or play, in theories from the classical (Aristotle) through the modern (Hegel, Brecht, Artaud), to the contemporary (Richard Schechner, Philip Zarilli, and others)b) affect, and its intersections with emotion and feeling: in addition to the impact of contemporary theories of affect and emotion (Massumi, Sedgwick) on performance theory (Erin Hurley), we will read earlier modern texts that anticipate recent debates (Diderot, Freud) and their current interpreters (Joseph Roach, Tim Murray and others), as well as those writing about the absence of affect and the performance of failure (Sara Bailes and others)c) archives and related institutions, practices and theories of recording performance, including the formation of audiences (Susan Bennett and with evaluating print and other media yielding evidence of ephemeral acts, including the work of theorists of memory (Pierre Nora) and remains (Rebecca Schneider), theatre historians (Rose Bank, Jody Enders,  Tracy Davis and others) as well as current theorists on the tensions between the archive and the repertoire (Diana Taylor) or between excavation and performance (Michael Shanks/ Mike Pearson)Requirements: one or two oral presentations of assigned texts and final paper. To prepare PhDs for professional writing, final paper will take the form of a review article (ca 5000 words) examining key concepts in the field and the controversies they may engender, by way of two recent books that tackle these concepts

2016-2017 Winter

20109 Comparative Methods in the Humanities

This course introduces the models of comparative analysis across national literatures, genres, and media. The texts to be discussed include Orson Welles’s “Citizen Kane” and Coleridge’s poem “Kubla Khan”; Benjamin’s “The Storyteller,” Kafka’s “Josephine the Mouse Singer,” Deleuze and Guattari, Kafka: Toward a Minor Literature, and Mario Vargas Llosa’s The Storyteller; Victor Segalen’s Stèles; Fenollosa and Pound’s “The Chinese Character as a Medium of Poetry” and Eliot Weinberger’s Nineteen Ways of Looking at Wang Wei; Mérimée, “Carmen,” Bizet, Carmen, and the film adaptation U-Carmen e-Khayelitsha (South Africa, 2005); Gorky’s and Kurosawa’s “Lower Depths;” Molière, Tartuffe, Dostoevsky, The Village Stepanchikovo and its Inhabitants, and Bakhtin, “Discourse in the Novel”; Gogol, The Overcoat, and Boris Eikhenbaum, “How Gogol’s Overcoat Is Made.”

2017-2018 Autumn

23112 Trans Performativity

(GNSE 23112,ENGL 23112)

In this course we will explore how these dialogues and conflicts between gender studies, queer theory, and trans studies have developed and transformed our understandings of categories like “gender,” “sex” and “trans.” Some guiding questions will be: how do we, and should we, conceive the materiality of the body? How do assumptions about ‘nature’ and the ‘natural’ determine how we view categories of identity, and what are the political ramifications of these determinations? Why, within certain discourses, has the fluidity of gender been promoted, while the fluidity of race remains controversial and generally unsupported? How do we account for these different receptions, and what kind of opportunities do they make available for politically engaged communities? How can we simultaneously value performative theories of gender, while also maintaining a certain stability of identity as developed within trans criticism, even when these two discourses seem in direct conflict?

2017-2018 Autumn

25001 Foucault: History Of Sexuality

(PHIL 24800,FNDL 22001,GNSE 23100,HIPS 24300,KNOW 27002)

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.

2017-2018 Autumn

29024 States of Surveillance

(REES 29024,REES 39024,CMLT 39024)

What does it feel to be watched and listened to all the time? Literary and cinematic works give us a glimpse into the experience of living under surveillance and explore the human effects of surveillance – the fraying of intimacy, fracturing sense of self, testing the limits of what it means to be human. Works from the former Soviet Union (Solzhenitsyn, Abram Tertz, Andrey Zvyagintsev), former Yugoslavia (Ivo Andrić, Danilo Kiš, Dušan Kovačević), Romania (Norman Manea, Cristian Mungiu), Bulgaria (Valeri Petrov), and Albania (Ismail Kadare).

2017-2018 Autumn

29801 B.A. Project & Workshop: Comparative Literature

This workshop begins in Autumn Quarter and continues through the middle of Spring Quarter. While the BA 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 is assigned in the Spring Quarter, based partly on participation in the workshop and partly on the quality of the BA paper. Attendance at each class section required.

2017-2018 Autumn

21209 The Woman in Modern Greek Literature

(MOGK 21000; GNSE 21209,CLCV 22517)

This course aims to reveal the woman and her world or what the society claims to be this world through prose and poetry written in different historical periods in Greece. The works chosen are part of major contemporary Greek literature and interact with culture, history and social ideas of the country. They represent three different periods:  the beginning of the 20th century, the years of dictatorship (1967-1974) and the period after the dictatorship until today. They all have a big impact on Greek literature and they all have drawn the interest of excellent translators in English. The works are offering the opportunity to observe the changes in women’ s position in Greece, and mostly to analyze major works examining the inner nature of the human being.The texts will be taught in English. No knowledge of Modern Greek is required. However, students with such knowledge are encouraged to study the text in Modern Greek, as well, since the chosen editions are bilingual.

2017-2018 Spring

22380 Nature in/as Literature

It seems self-evident that the world we live in influence our literatures and languages. The question is, How? On the other hand, nature itself is a kind of literature, and in more ways than one. From one point of view, nature writes itself when coastlines shift and mountains erode. But there are at least two other ways in which nature is a kind of literature. One of these stories is written by scientists and environmental historians, who take data acquired and use it to reconstruct narratives of environmental change. At the same time, there is another (and some would say, an especially urgent) story of nature, which is being etched into the natural world by bulldozers, bridges, and dynamite. Just like more traditional forms of nature writing, these other narratives of the environment are as much a form of literature as any other, and since humans have a role, not only in shaping the natural world, but also in telling its story, humans are the coauthors of the story of our planet in more than one sense.This course is an introduction to the history of the concept of nature, ecocriticism, and environmental history. We will discuss issues and topics such as: relationships between nature and literature, ecofeminism, literary/textual ecosystems, environmental ethics, narratives of rise/collapse, animal studies, urban studies, ecolinguistics, and human-environment interactions.

2017-2018 Spring

22609 A Social History of the Poet in the Arab and Islamic World

(HIST 22609,NEHC 20745)

What constitutes a poet? What role does a poet play in society? Can we think of poets as agents of change? If so, in what capacity? This course asks the student to consider the role of the poet in the shaping of Islamic history. The course traces the changing role of the poet and of poetry in Islamic history with a focus on Arabic poetry (in translation) in the early modern and modern Middle East and North Africa. From early modern mystical poets, to modern Arab nationalist poets, to the street poets of the Arab Spring, the course investigates the role and function of the poet as an agent of change and of poetry as a catalyst for the formation of collective identity. To do this the course also explores the variety of mediums through which poetry was transmitted and remembered. We will thus consider the role of orality, aurality, and memory in the creation, preservation, and transmission of poetry in the early modern and modern Arabic-speaking world.

2017-2018 Spring

23305 Directors and Directing: Theory, Stage, Text

(TAPS 23305,ENGL 23305)

Theatre has always needed the concept of directing when staging a play. However, the role of the director as we know it has emerged only with the beginning of modern drama. This course will investigate the role of the director as an intersection between text, theory, and performance. The course explores the impact of the director in shaping modern drama, as well as critical approaches of literary and theatrical theory. We will deal not only with the historical development of the director’s role and textual interpretation, but also with the dynamics between theory and practice, and the changes in the concepts of space, acting, and performing. We will focus on approaches and writings by André Antoine, Vsevolod Meyerhold, Yevgeny Vakhtangov, Konstantin Stanislavski, Gordon Craig, Max Reinhardt, Jacques Copeau, Leopold Jessner, Erwin Piscator, Bertolt Brecht, and Samuel Beckett. We will examine these approaches in relation to literary theories of performativity (John Austin, John Searle, Judith Butler, Mikhail Bakhtin). We will also be interested in testing whether these theories match the practice, and discuss the potential of constructing a theory of acting, performing, and directing today.    

2017-2018 Spring

23810 Spanish Cinema-Basque Cinema

(BASQ 24710,SPAN 24716)

This course explores Basque cinema from its beginnings to our days while also reviewing Spanish cinema from a Basque point of view. Among other topics, the course will explore the nationalist imaginary and its influence in film, the centrality of gender (and motherly) representations in Basque cinema, Basque films' recent tendency to become Spanish blockbusters outselling Hollywood, and allusions to the Basque Country in Spanish cinema.

2017-2018 Spring

29801 B.A. Project & Workshop: Comparative Literature

This workshop begins in Autumn Quarter and continues through the middle of Spring Quarter. While the BA 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 is assigned in the Spring Quarter, based partly on participation in the workshop and partly on the quality of the BA paper. Attendance at each class section required.

2017-2018 Spring

Balkan Folklore

Vampires, fire-breathing dragons, vengeful mountain nymphs. 7/8 and other uneven dance beats, heart-rending laments, and a living epic tradition. This course is an overview of Balkan folklore from historical, political, and anthropological perspectives. We seek to understand folk tradition as a dynamic process and consider the function of different folklore genres in the imagining and maintenance of community and the socialization of the individual. We also experience this living tradition firsthand through visits of a Chicago-based folk dance ensemble, “Balkan Dance.”

2017-2018 Winter

21200 Literature and Technology: Machines, Humans, and the Novel

(PORT 28818,ITAL 28818)

In his Scienza Nuova (New Science), Giambattista Vico writes that "the Egyptians reduced all preceding world time to three ages; namely, the age of gods, the age of heroes, and the age of men." What the Egyptians and Vico could not have predicted was that history had yet another age in store: the age of the machine. Carlyle baptized, Marx outlined it, Heidegger warned against it; Deleuze and Guattari proclaimed that "everything is a machine"; and Ted Kaczynski even went as far as to kill in order to free human beings from the "technological slavery" the machine age had purportedly brought about. And yet, as Heidegger wrote, "everywhere we remain unfree and chained to technology, whether we passionately affirm or deny it." So what is technology? What impact did it have on human beings and on the writing of literature as the Industrial Revolution exploded onto the European continent? In this course we will pose anew the question concerning technology within the one field that Heidegger deemed akin to the essence of technology: art, and by deduction, literature. Together, we will trace the ecological, economical, and emotional footprints of various machines and technological devices (automata, trains, phonographs, cameras). We will delve into the topic with Charlie Chaplin's Modern Times, continue with a reflection on the human being as a machine (Frankenstein and Pinocchio), transition to accounts on cities, progress, and machines (Dickens, Zola, Eça de Queirós), and end with the Futurists' technological extravaganzas that will include a visit to Chicago's Art Institute. Other readings include texts by Marx, Raymond Williams, Heidegger, Leo Marx, Deleuze & Guattari, etc.

2017-2018 Winter

23401 The Burden of History: The Nation and Its Lost Paradise

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).

2017-2018 Winter

25500 Psychoanalytic Theory: Freud and Lacan

(SIGN 26033,FREN 25551,FREN 35551,ENGL 25509,ENGL 35509)

This course is an introduction to psychoanalytic theory, from the works of the two most influential figures in the field. We’ll read seminal texts by both Freud and Lacan, and look as well at how those works have influenced the Humanities and philosophy— specifically, we’ll consider brief passages by  Derrida, Kristeva, Kofman and Zizek.  Starting with Freud, the idea is to make students feel “at home” in the fascinating world of psychoanalysis and its assumptions. Major texts by Freud will include “Beyond the Pleasure Principle,” “Note on a Mystic Writing Pad,” “The Uncanny,” “Jensen’s Gradiva,” the Dora case, and a selection of texts from other works. Lacan readings: “Seminar on the Purloined Letter,” Poe’s “The Purloined Letter,” “God and the Jouissance of the Woman: A love letter,” and parts of the Ecrits. We will also read excerpts from a variety of texts that use the writings of Freud and Lacan for theoretical purposes: Derrida, Sarah Kristeva, Irigaray, Zizek, and others.

2017-2018 Winter

26701 Marsilio Ficino's On Love

This course is first of all a close reading of Marsilio Ficino’s seminal book On Love (first Latin edition De amore 1484; Ficino’s own Italian translation 1544). Ficino’s philosophical masterpiece is the foundation of the Renaissance view of love from a Neo-Platonic perspective. It is impossible to overemphasize its influence on European culture. On Love is not just a radically new interpretation of Plato’s Symposium. It is the book through which sixteenth- and seventeenth-century Europe read the love experience. Our course will analyze its multiple classical sources and its spiritual connotations. During our close reading of Ficino’s text, we will show how European writers and philosophers appropriated specific parts of this Renaissance masterpiece. In particular, we will read extensive excerpts from some important love treatises, such as Castiglione’s The Courtier (Il cortigiano), Leone Ebreo’s Dialogues on Love, Tullia d’Aragona’s On the Infinity of Love, but also selections from a variety of European poets, such as Michelangelo’s canzoniere, Maurice Scève’s Délie, and Fray Luis de León’s Poesía.

2017-2018 Winter

28900 Return Health Care and the Limits of State Action

(BIOS 29232; BPRO 28600; HMRT 28602; KNOW 27006)

In a time of great human mobility and weakening state frontiers, epidemic disease is able to travel fast and far, mutate in response to treatment, and defy the institutions invented to keep it under control: quarantine, the cordon sanitaire, immunization, and the management of populations. Public health services in many countries find themselves at a loss in dealing with these outbreaks of disease, a deficiency to which NGOs emerge as a response (an imperfect one to be sure). Through a series of readings in anthropology, sociology, ethics, medicine, and political science, we will attempt to reach an understanding of this crisis of both epidemiological technique and state legitimacy, and to sketch out options.

2017-2018 Winter

29801 B.A. Project & Workshop: Comparative Literature

This workshop begins in Autumn Quarter and continues through the middle of Spring Quarter. While the BA 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 is assigned in the Spring Quarter, based partly on participation in the workshop and partly on the quality of the BA paper. Attendance at each class section required.

2017-2018 Winter

22303/32303 Prosody and Poetic Form: An Introduction to Comparative Metrics

(CLCV 21313,CLAS 31313,SLAV 22303,SLAV 32303,GRMN 22314,GRMN 32314,ENGL 22310,ENGL 32303)

This class offers (i) an overview of major European systems of versification, with particular attention to their historical development, and (ii) an introduction to the theory of meter. In addition to analyzing the formal properties of verse, we will inquire into their relevance for the articulation of poetic genres and, more broadly, the history of literary (and sub-literary) systems. There will be some emphasis on Graeco-Roman quantitative metrics, its afterlife, and the evolution of Germanic and Slavic syllabo-tonic verse. No prerequisites, but a working knowledge of one European language besides English is strongly recommended.

2017-2018 Autumn

22400/32400 History of Intl Cinema-1

(CMST 28500,ENGL 48700,ARTH 28500,ARTH 38500,CMST 48500,MAPH 33600,ENGL 29300,ARTV 20002)

This course introduces what was singular about the art and craft of silent film. Its general outline is chronological. We also discuss main national schools and international trends of film making. Equivalent Course(s): ARTH 28500,ARTH 38500,ARTV 26500,ARTV 36500,CMLT 22400,CMLT 32400,CMST 48500,ENGL 29300,ENGL 48700,MAPH 36000

2017-2018 Autumn

22402/32402 Fate and Duty: European Tragedy from Aeschylus to Brecht

(GRMN 22402,CLCV 22117,CLAS 32117,REES 22402)

This class will explore the development of European drama from Attic tragedy and comedy and their reception in Ancient Rome and French Neoclassicism to the transformation of dramatic form in 18-20th c. European literatures. The focus will be on the evolution of plot, characterization, time-and-space of dramatic action, ethical notions (free will, guilt, conscience), as well as on representations of affect. All readings in English. No prerequisites.

2017-2018 Autumn

23201/33201 Returning the Gaze: the West and the Rest

(REES 2/39012,NEHC 2/30885)

Aware of being observed. And judged. Inferior... Abject… Angry... Proud…This course provides insight into identity dynamics between the “West,” as the center of economic power and self-proclaimed normative humanity, and the “Rest,” as the poor, backward, volatile periphery.  We investigate the relationship between South East European,  Russian, Turkish self-representations and the imagined Western gaze. Inherent in the act of looking at oneself through the eyes of another is the privileging of that other’s standard.  We will contemplate the responses to this existential position of identifying symbolically with a normative site outside of oneself -- self-consciousness, defiance, arrogance, self-exoticization -- and consider how these responses have been incorporated in the texture of the national, gender, and social identities in the region.  Orhan Pamuk, Ivo Andrić, Nikos Kazantzakis, Aleko Konstantinov, Emir Kusturica, Milcho Manchevski, Alexander Herzen, Fyodor Dostoevsky

2017-2018 Autumn

27701/37701 Imaginary Worlds: The Fantastic and Magic Realism in Russia and Southeastern Europe

(REES 39018,REES 29018)

In this course, we will ask what constitutes the fantastic and magic realism as literary genres while reading some of the most interesting writings to have come out of Russia and Southeastern Europe. While considering the stylistic and narrative specificities of this narrative mode, we also think about its political functions -from subversive to escapist, to supportive of a nationalist imaginary-in different contexts and at different historic moments in the two regions.

2017-2018 Spring

38810 Empire, Slavery & Salvation: Writing Diff. in Colonial Americas

(LACS 38810,SPAN 38810)

This course explores portrayals of human difference in literature, travel writing, painting, and autobiography from Spain, England, and the Americas. Students will become versed in debates surrounding the emergence of human distinctions based on religion, race, and ethnicity in the early modern era. Understanding these debates and the history surrounding them is crucial to participating in informed discussion, research, and activism regarding issues of race, empire, and colonialism across time and space.

2017-2018 Spring

29402/39402 Language is Migrant: Yiddish Poetics of the Border

This course examines Ashkenazi Jewish literary narratives about geopolitical borders and border-crossing though travel and migration, engaged with questions about the linguistic borders of Yiddish itself. As a diasporic language, Yiddish has long been constructed as subversively internationalist or cosmopolitan, raising questions about the relationships between language and nation, vernacularity and statelessness.This course explores the questions: How do the diasporic elements of the language produce literary possibilities? How do the “borders” of Yiddish shape its poetics? How do Yiddish poets and novelists thematize their historical experiences of immigration and deportation? And how has Yiddish literature informed the development of other world literatures through contact and translation?Literary and primary texts will include the work of Anna Margolin, Alexander Harkavy, Peretz Markish, Dovid Bergelson, Yankev Glatshteyn, Yosef Luden, S. An-sky, and others. Theoretical texts will include writing by Wendy Brown, Dilar Dirik, Gloria Anzaldúa, Wendy Trevino, Agamben, Arendt, Weinreich, and others. The course will incorporate Yiddish journalism and essays, in addition to poetry and prose. All material will be in English.

2017-2018 Spring

40000 From Baroque to Neo-Baroque

(CDIN 40000,ENGL 63400,SPAN 40017,LACS 40017)

We will take a transatlantic and hemispheric approach to examining the political, epistemological, and aesthetic dimensions of the concept of the Baroque, by reading European and Latin American theory and poetry from three centuries (17th, 20th, 21st). The course is purposefully designed to put modern and early modern texts in constant dialogue. The literary essays of 20th-c. Latin American writers such as Lezama Lima and Alfonso Reyes, for instance, will illuminate the 17th-c. poems of Góngora and Sor Juana, while these will be read in conjunction with those of José Kozer, Luis Felipe Fabre, and Tamara Kamenszain. The remarkable persistence of the Baroque across centuries, geographies, and cultures raises a number of questions. Why has the Baroque not gone out of fashion, but rather, been reborn again and again? How does this apparently recondite mode manage to remain politically relevant and articulate urgent ideas in its moment? How does the Baroque provide poets with a prism through which to explore questions of subjectivity, originality, and capital? How does the Baroque contribute to or complicate notions of intertextuality? How does a Baroque aesthetic theorize accumulation and waste in developing capitalist and late capitalist societies? How does the connection between the neo-Baroque and antropofagia, the Brazilian notion of cultural cannibalism, play out in poems not only written in Brazil, but also throughout Latin America and in the U.S.? Although the course will be conducted in English, most of the materials will also be available in Spanish.

2017-2018 Autumn

40500 Brechtian Representations

(CMST 46200,TAPS 44500,ENGL 44500,GRMN 47200)

Brecht is indisputably the most influential playwright in the 20th century, but his influence on film theory and practice on cultural theory generally is also considerable. In this course we will explore the range and variety of Brecht's own theatre, from the anarchic plays of the 1920's to the agitprop Lehrstück and film (especially Kühle Wampe) to the classical parable plays, as well as the work of his heirs in German theatre (Heiner Müller, Peter Weiss) and film (RW Fassbinder, Alexander Kluge), in French film (Jean-Luc Godard, Chris Marker), film and theatre in Britain (Mike Leigh and Lucy Prebble), and theatre and film in Africa, from South Africa to Senegal. Crucially for graduate critical work: we will also give due attention to the often unacknowledged impact of Brecht's theorizing on a range of genres and media on this better known contemporaries Adorno, Benjamin, Lukács, as well as on cultural theory elsewhere from the Situationists to digital labor. Requirements: oral presentations, short midterm and final research paper. This course is designed for students in MAPH or HUM PhD programs; open to MFA with prior permission of instructor.

2017-2018 Spring

20801/40801 Before and After Beckett

(ENGL 24408/44508; TAPS 28424)

 Beckett is conventionally typed as the playwright of minimalist scenes of unremitting bleakness, but his experiments with theatre and film echo the irreverent play of popular culture (vaudeville on stage and screen, e.g. Chaplin and Keaton) as well as experimental theatre and modern philosophy, even when there are no direct lines of influence. This course will juxtapose these points of reference with Beckett's plays and those of his contemporaries (Ionesco, Genet and others in French, Pinter in English). It will then explore more recent plays that suggest the influence of Beckett by Pinter, Carul Churchill and Sarah Kane in English; Albert Jarry and Michel Vinaver in French, as well as the relevance of theorists and philosophers including Barthes, Wittgenstein, and critics writing on specific plays. Prerequisites: HUM CORE and at least one college level course in drama or TAPS. French is helpful but not required.

2017-2018 Winter

41410 The Literary Life of Things in China

(EALC 41400)

This course investigates traditional literary strategies in China through which objects are depicted and animated. Our emphasis will be on reading in primary sources, but we’ll also draw on secondary sources from anthropology, the history of material culture, literary theory, and art history, both from within and outside China studies. Each week will introduce some basic genre and key literary works while also foregrounding certain conceptual issues. Students will select a case study to work on throughut the quarter, which will become their final research paper and which will also help orient their shorter class presentations. The choice of subject for the case study is quite open, so that each student can pursue a project that relates to his or her own central interests. It might be a cultural biography of a real object or class of objects; it might be a study of how objects are deployed in a novel or play, encyclopedia or connoisseurship manual, but there are many other possibilities.

2017-2018 Autumn

42918 Exploratory Translation

(CDIN 42918,ENGL 42918,RLLT 42918,SCTH 42918)

Focusing on the theory, history and practice of poetic translation, this seminar includes sessions with invited theorists and practitioners from North and South America, Europe, and Asia. Taking translation to be an art of making sense that is transmitted together with a craft of shapes and sequences, we aim to account for social and intellectual pressures influencing translation projects. We deliberately foreground other frameworks beyond “foreign to English” and “olden epochs to modern”—and other methods than the “equivalence of meaning”—in order to aim at a truly general history and theory of translation that might both guide comparative cultural history and enlarge the imaginative resources of translators and readers of translation. In addition to reading and analysis of outside texts spanning such topics as semantic and grammatical interference, gain and loss, bilingualism, self-translation, pidgin, code-switching, translationese, and foreignization vs. nativization, students will be invited to try their hands at a range of tactics, aiming toward a final portfolio of annotated translations.

2017-2018 Winter

48017 Phaedras Compared: Adaptation, Gender, Tragic Form

(CDIN 48017,CLAS 48017,FREN 48017,TAPS 48017,GNSE 48017)

This seminar places Racine’s French neoclassical tragedy Phaedra within a wide-ranging series of adaptations of the ancient myth, from its Greek and Latin sources (Euripides, Seneca, Ovid) to twentieth-century and contemporary translations and stage adaptations (Ted Hughes, Sarah Kane), read along with a series of theoretical and critical texts. Particular attention will be paid to critical paradigms and approaches in the evolving fields of classical reception studies, theater and performance studies, and gender studies. Reading knowledge of French strongly preferred.Note: Reading competency in French preferred.

2017-2018 Winter

50106 Literary Theory: Pre-Modern, Non-Western, Not Exclusively Literary

Readings in theories of literature and related arts from cultures other than those of the post-1900 industrialized regions. What motivated reflection on verbal art in Greece, Rome, early China, early South Asia, and elsewhere? Rhetoric, hermeneutics, commentary, allegory, and other modes of textual analysis will be approached through source texts, using both originals and translations. Authors to be considered include Confucius, Plato, Aristotle, Zhuangzi, Sima Qian, Augustine, Liu Xie, Abhinavagupta, Dante, Li Zhi, Rousseau, Lessing, Schlegel, and Saussure. This course fulfulls the Autumn core requirement for first-year Ph.D. students in Comparative Literature.

2017-2018 Autumn

50201 Contemporary Critical Theory

(DVPR 50201)

This course will examine some of the salient texts of postmodernism. Part of the question of the course will be the status and meaning of “post”-modern, post-structuralist. The course requires active and informed participation.

2017-2018 Winter

50204 Destruction of Images, Books and Artifacts in Europe and South Asia

(CDIN 50204; SALC 50204; SCTH 50204; RLVC 50204; HREL 50204; ARTH 40204)

The course offers a comparative perspective on European and South Asian iconoclasm. In the European tradition, iconoclasm was predominantly aimed at images, whereas in South Asian traditions it was also enacted upon books and buildings. The combination of these traditions will allow us to extend the usual understanding of iconoclasm as the destruction of images to a broader phenomenon of destruction of cultural artifacts and help question the theories of image as they have been independently developed in Europe and South Asia, and occasionally in conversation with one another. We will ask how and why, in the context of particular political imaginaries and material cultures, were certain objects singled out for iconoclasm? Also, who was considered to be entitled or authorized to commit their destruction? Through a choice of concrete examples of iconoclasm, we will query how religious and political motivations are defined, redefined, and intertwined in each particular case. We will approach the iconoclastic events in Europe and South Asia through the lenses of philology, history, and material culture. Class discussions will incorporate not only textual materials, but also the close collaborative study of images, objects, and film. Case studies will make use of objects in the Art Institute of Chicago and Special Collections at the University Library.

2017-2018 Spring

20601 Introduction To Drama

(TAPS 19300,ENGL 10600)

This course explores the unique challenges of experiencing performance through the page. Students will read plays and performances closely, taking into account not only form, character, plot, and genre, but also theatrical considerations like staging, acting, spectatorship, and historical conventions. We will also consider how various agents—playwrights, readers, directors, actors, and audiences—generate plays and give them meaning. While the course is not intended as a survey of dramatic literature or theater history, students will be introduced to a variety of essential plays from across the dramatic tradition. The course culminates in a scene project assignment that allows students put their skills of interpretation and adaptation into practice. No experience with theater is expected. (Gateway, Drama)

2018-2019 Autumn

23112 Trans Performativity

(GNSE 23112,ENGL 23112)

In this course we will explore how these dialogues and conflicts between gender studies, queer theory, and trans studies have developed and transformed our understandings of categories like “gender,” “sex” and “trans.” Some guiding questions will be: how do we, and should we, conceive the materiality of the body? How do assumptions about ‘nature’ and the ‘natural’ determine how we view categories of identity, and what are the political ramifications of these determinations? Why, within certain discourses, has the fluidity of gender been promoted, while the fluidity of race remains controversial and generally unsupported? How do we account for these different receptions, and what kind of opportunities do they make available for politically engaged communities? How can we simultaneously value performative theories of gender, while also maintaining a certain stability of identity as developed within trans criticism, even when these two discourses seem in direct conflict?

2018-2019 Autumn

24218 Unveiling Chivalry: Chivalric literature in Medieval and Early Modern Europe (1100-1600)

(ITAL 24218)

The myth of chivalry has been fostered and reshaped from the Middle Ages to the present with damsels-in-distress, knights' self-sacrifice, adventures and courtly love. But how was chivalry in the 11th or the 16th century literature different from today's perception? What changed between historical chivalry and its fictional representation? This course aims to challenge the narrative of chivalry as one conventionally characterized by rise and fall, or a movement from virtue to parody, or spirituality to skepticism. We will see instead how each literary text provides multiple layers of interpretation and how chivalry is redefined across time and space. Exploring the notion of chivalry will also allow us to focus on the so-called "spirituality" of the Middle Ages and the relationship between the Renaissance and the past. We will study chivalric literature from the Chanson de Roland to Cervantes's Don Quijote. A strong emphasis will be given to Italian literature, including Dante's Commedia, Boccaccio's Decameron and Ariosto's Orlando furioso. Readings will also include Chrétien de Troyes's Lancelot and Perceval, with a final session devoted to T.S. Eliot's The Waste Land. Taught in English.

2018-2019 Autumn

24610 Uncanny Encounters in Global Medieval Literature

Meetings with ghosts, dragons, elves, and jinn – violent or erotic, compassionate or unsettling – animate many key texts of the Middle Ages. Unlike in our stereotypes of a past when people blamed their daily problems on witches or demons, medieval literature depicts strange beings, dangerous monsters, and otherworld realms as anything but quotidian. Rather, medieval protagonists regularly find their lives changed by experiences with the strange.In this course, we will interrogate the literary and cultural meanings of these uncanny encounters through close readings of primary texts in translation from across medieval Eurasia – including Norse sagas, Persian epics, Celtic legends, Tibetan hagiographies, and Japanese drama. We will draw on comparative methods in responding analytically and creatively to these underappreciated works.

2018-2019 Autumn

25001 Foucault And The History Of Sexuality

(PHIL 24800,FNDL 22001,GNSE 23100,HIPS 24300,KNOW 27002)

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.PrerequisitesOne prior philosophy course is strongly recommended.

2018-2019 Autumn

25315 Commentary and Authority

(EALC 25315)

Commentary--whether published formally or distributed through social media--is essential to our understanding of past and current events, books, and films. But what is at stake in each act of commentary? How does commentary work upon its base text and readers? Traditional Chinese commentary provides unparalleled material for thinking through these questions. This course delves into several influential and controversial works of traditional Chinese commentary, ranging from the *Zuo Tradition* (c. 4th century BCE) to 17th-century fiction commentary. Combining close reading with carefully guided writing exercises, the sessions are intended to show the critical role commentary played in the development of pre-modern Chinese reading practices and assist students in honing their ability to negotiate and wield commentary in work and daily life.

2018-2019 Autumn

20109 Comparative Methods in the Humanities

(ENGL 28918)

This course introduces models of comparative analysis across national literatures, genres, and media by focusing on poetry in different languages and cultures and in relation to other discursive and artistic forms.  We will examine a wide variety of poetic and critical texts in order to explore such topics as the specificity of poetry and of poetic kinds; orality and folk, art, and popular song; poetry’s relation to prose (from philosophy to autobiography to journalism); transnational imitation and translation; poetry and globalization; ekphrasis and poetry’s relations to visual arts; and poetry and film.  Readings will likely include poems by Sappho, Horace, Dante, Li Bai, Du Fu, Ronsard, Shakespeare, Milton, Basho, Goethe, Wordsworth, Robert Browning, and Dylan; and critical writings by Longinus, Plutarch, Montaigne, Li Zhi, Wordsworth, Auerbach, Jakobson, Adorno, Pasolini, Zumthor, Culler, and Damrosch.

2018-2019 Spring

20800 Brecht and Beyond

(ENGL 24400,CMST 26200,TAPS 28435)

Brecht is indisputably the most influential playwright in the 20th century, but his influence on film theory and practice and on cultural theory generally is also considerable. In this course we will explore the range and variety of Brecht's own theatre, from the anarchic plays of the 1920's to the agitprop Lehrstück and film esp Kühle Wampe) to the classical parable plays, as well as the work of his heirs in German theatre (Heiner Müller, Peter Weiss) and film (RW Fassbinder, Alexander Kluge), in French film (Jean-Luc Godard) and cultural theory (the Situationists and May 68), film and theatre in Britain (such as Caryl Churchill or Mike Leigh), theatre and film in Africa, from South Africa to Senegal, and if possible a film or play from the US that engages with Brechtian theory and/or practice. (Drama)PrerequisitesTAPS and/or Hum Core required; no first years.

2018-2019 Spring

23810 Spanish Cinema-Basque Cinema

(BASQ 24710,SPAN 24716)

This course explores Basque cinema from its beginnings to our days while also reviewing Spanish cinema from a Basque point of view. Among other topics, the course will explore the nationalist imaginary and its influence in film, the centrality of gender (and motherly) representations in Basque cinema, Basque films' recent tendency to become Spanish blockbusters outselling Hollywood, and allusions to the Basque Country in Spanish cinema.

2018-2019 Spring

26301 The Literature of Disgust, Rabelais to Nausea

(ENGL 26300)

This course will survey a range of literary works which take the disgusting as their principle aesthetic focus, while also providing students with an introduction to core issues and concepts in the history of aesthetic theory, such as the beautiful and the sublime, disinterested judgment and purposive purposelessness, taste and distaste. At the same time, our readings will allow us to explore the ways in which the disgusting has historically been utilized as a way of producing socially critical literature, by representing that which a culture categorically attempts to marginalize, exclude and expel. Readings will engage with the variety of aesthetic functions that the disgusting has been afforded throughout modern literary history, including thecarnivalesque and grotesque in Rabelais and the bawdy and satirical in Swift; Zola’s gruesome naturalism, Sartre’s existential nausea and Clarice Lispector’s narrative of spiritual abjection; as well as Thomas Bernhard’s experiments with contempt and Dennis Cooper’s pseudo‐pornographic genre explorations. We will read widely in literary and cultural theories of disgust, as well as in the psychological and biologicalliterature of the emotion. Prerequisite: Strong stomach. (Pre-1650, 1650-1830, 1830-1940, Fiction, Theory)

2018-2019 Spring

27003 Woman/Native

(ENGL 27003,CRES 27013,GNSE 27013)

This course reads works of postcolonial literature and theory in order to consider the entanglements of the figures of “women” and “natives” in colonial as well as postcolonial discourse. We will discuss topics such as the persistent feminization of the profane, degraded, and contagious bodies of colonized natives; representations of women as both the keepers and the victims of “authentic” native culture; the status (symbolic and otherwise) of women in anti-colonial resistance and insurgency; and the psychic pathologies (particularly nervous conditions of anxiety, hysteria, and madness) that appear repeatedly in these works as states to which women and/as natives are especially susceptible.Authors may include Ama Ata Aidoo, Hélène Cixous J.M Coetzee, Maryse Condé, Tsitsi Dangarembga, Mahasweta Devi, Assia Djebar, Frantz Fanon, Sigmund Freud, Silvia Federici, Nuruddin Farah, Bessie Head, V.S. Naipaul, Jean Rhys, Tayeb Salih, Ousmane Sembène, Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak.(Fiction, Theory)

2018-2019 Spring

21600 Comparative Fairy Tales

(GRMN 28500,HUMA 28400,NORW 28500)

How do we account for the allure of fairy tales? For some, fairy tales count as sacred tales meant to enchant rather than edify. For others, they are cautionary tales, replete with obvious moral lessons. For the purposes of the course, we will assume that these critics are correct in their contention that fairy tales contain essential underlying meanings. We will conduct our own readings of fairy tales from the German Brothers Grimm, the Norwegians, Asbjørnsen and Moe and the Dane, Hans Christian Andersen, relying on our own critical skills as well as selected secondary readings.

2018-2019 Winter

25218 Reading Nonhuman Animals: A Challenge to Anthropocentrism

(ITAL 25218)

How can we "read" a literary nonhuman animal? In what ways does literature deal with ethical and political issues concerning nonhuman animals? What does it mean to live in a multicultural and multispecies world? What does it mean to be "human"? In this course we will ask these and other related questions as they are presented and represented in Italian 20th-century literary texts, read alongside philosophical writings, scholarly essays, and visual materials. While maintaining a focus on Italian literature, a comparative approach involving literary works of non-Italian authors will be key in understanding the pervasiveness of the problems that have caused our detachment from nature and our broken relationship with nonhuman animals. We will closely analyze and critically evaluate the works of several authors, including those by Italo Calvino, Primo Levi, Anna Maria Ortese, Elsa Morante, Italo Svevo, Alice Walker, and Franz Kafka, giving particular attention to techniques of close reading. A thematic approach will enable us to explore a large number of critical discourses, from the moral status of nonhuman animals to the long-held assumptions regarding the anthropocentric set of values that have defined (Western) culture. We will also take into consideration different theoretical frameworks such as posthumanist theory and gender studies in order to discuss and evaluate the selected texts from different perspectives and entry points.

2018-2019 Winter

27602 Renaissance Demonology

(HIST 22110,ITAL 26500,RLST 26501)

In this course we analyze the complex concept of demonology according to early modern European culture from a theological, historical, philosophical, and literary point of view. The term 'demon' in the Renaissance encompasses a vast variety of meanings. Demons are hybrids. They are both the Christian devils, but also synonyms for classical deities, and Neo-platonic spiritual beings. As far as Christian theology is concerned, we read selections from Augustine's and Thomas Aquinas's treatises, some complex exorcisms written in Italy, and a recent translation of the infamous Malleus maleficarum, the most important treatise on witch-hunt. We pay close attention to the historical evolution of the so-called witch-craze in Europe through a selection of the best secondary literature on this subject, with special emphasis on Michel de Certeau's The Possession at Loudun. We also study how major Italian and Spanish women mystics, such as Maria Maddalena de' Pazzi and Teresa of Avila, approach the issue of demonic temptation and possession. As far as Renaissance Neoplatonic philosophy is concerned, we read selections from Marsilio Ficino's Platonic Theology and Girolamo Cardano's mesmerizing autobiography. We also investigate the connection between demonology and melancholy through a close reading of the initial section of Robert Burton's Anatomy of Melancholy and Cervantes's short story The Glass Graduate (El licenciado Vidriera).

2018-2019 Winter

20610/30610 Adaptation & Translation in Theater-Making

(TAPS 20610/30610)

This course combines seminar and studio practices to investigate the ways in which theater and performance-makers create work in relation to shifting contexts. How are theatre adaptations and translations shaped by aesthetics, geography, socio-economic conditions, cultural transition, shifting formulations of race, ethnicity, and gender? How do theatre-makers conceive and realize the resonance of their work within local and across transnational spaces? This course explores these and other questions through practical experiments in adaptation and translation, case studies of artists, attending performances, critical readings on adaptation and translation theory, and discussions of the relationship between art and national and transnational political imaginaries. At the center of the course is a visit from the artistic directors of two theater companies working with translations and adaptations of "World Literature" for a (post)Soviet context, one based in Uzbekistan and the other in Kazakhstan. We hope the exposure to their working processes will animate the questions of the course in exciting and unpredictable ways. For their final project, students will have the option of writing a critical paper, writing a proposal for a speculative work, or creating an artistic work.

2018-2019 Autumn

31600 Marxism and Modern Culture

(ENGL 32300; MAPH 31600; CRES 32300)

Designed for graduate students in the humanities, this course begins with fundamental texts on ideology and the critique of capitalist culture by Marx, Engels, Lenin, Gramsci, Althusser, Wilhelm Reich and Raymond Williams, before moving to Marxist aesthetics, from the orthodox Lukács to the Frankfurt School (Adorno, Benjamin) to the heterodox (Brecht), and concludes with contemporary debates around Marxism and imperialism (Lenin, Fanon, and others), and Marxism and media, including the internetRequirements: one or two oral presentations—depending on class size--of assigned texts, including one page of notes, quotes, and queries for the class, and submission of notes as part of writing requirementMidterm: analysis of a fundamental textFinal paper: analysis of a text/art object/ cultural practice illuminated by Marxist and related theoriesPQ: HUM graduate students and equivalent (eg DIV school; not suitable for MAPSS or Social Science PhDs

2018-2019 Winter

22301/32301 War And Peace

(ENGL 28912/32302,REES 20001/30001,FNDL 27103,HIST 23704)

Tolstoy’s novel is at once a national epic, a treatise on history, a spiritual meditation, and a masterpiece of realism. This course presents a close reading of one of the world’s great novels, and of the criticism that has been devoted to it, including landmark works by Victor Shklovsky, Boris Eikhenbaum, Isaiah Berlin, and George Steiner. (B, G)

2018-2019 Winter

22400/32400 History of International Cinema I: Silent Era

(ARTH 28500,ARTH 38500,ARTV 20002,ENGL 29300,ENGL 48700,MAPH 33600,CMST 28500,CMST 48500)

This course provides a survey of the history of cinema from its emergence in the mid-1890s to the transition to sound in the late 1920s. We will examine the cinema as a set of aesthetic, social, technological, national, cultural, and industrial practices as they were exercised and developed during this 30-year span. Especially important for our examination will be the exchange of film techniques, practices, and cultures in an international context. We will also pursue questions related to the historiography of the cinema, and examine early attempts to theorize and account for the cinema as an artistic and social phenomenon.PrerequisitesPrior or concurrent registration in CMST 10100 required. Required of students majoring or minoring in Cinema and Media Studies.Course Description Notes: This is the first part of a two-quarter course.

2018-2019 Autumn

23212/33212 Art, Ekphrasis, and Myth in Early Modern Spanish Theater

(SPAN 23201/33201)

In the early modern age, the verbal had a strong visual component. Poets and playwrights utilized the sense of sight since it was the highest of the Platonic senses and a mnemonic key to lead spectators to remember vividly what they had read or heard, long before spectacle plays were in fashion. One important technique for visualization was ekphrasis, the description of an art work within a text. Often, to perform was to imitate the affects, sentiments and poses of a painting. For this purpose, playwrights such as Cervantes, Lope de Vega and Calderón often turned to the mythological canvases of the Italian Renaissance along with the portraits of great rulers and images of battle. The class will examine the uses of art onstage: mnemonic, mimetic, political, religious comic, tragic, lyric and licentious. It will also delve into different forms of ekphrasis from the notional to the dramatic and from the fragmented to the reversed. Although the course will focus on Spanish plays of the early modern period, it will also include ancient treatises by Cicero, and Pliny as well as Renaissance mnemonic treatises by Della Porta. The course will be in English. Reading knowledge of Spanish is required since plays will be read in the original. Those taking the class for credit in Spanish must write their final paper in Spanish.

2018-2019 Autumn

23301/33301 Balkan Folklore

(ANTH 25908/35908,NEHC 20568/30568,REES 29009/39009)

Vampires, fire-breathing dragons, vengeful mountain nymphs. 7/8 and other uneven dance beats, heart-rending laments and a living epic tradition.This course is an overview of Balkan folklore from historical, political and anthropological, perspectives. We seek to understand folk tradition as a dynamic process and consider the function of different folklore genres in the imagining and maintenance of community and the socialization of the individual. We also experience this living tradition first-hand through visits of a Chicago-based folk dance ensemble, “Balkan Dance.”

2018-2019 Winter

23401/33401 The Burden Of History: The Nation And Its Lost Paradise

(HIST 24005/34005,NEHC 20573/30573,REES 29013/39013)

What makes it possible for the imagined communities called nations to command the emotional attachments that they do?  This course considers some possible answers to Benedict Anderson’s question on the basis of material from the Balkans. We will examine the transformation of the scenario of paradise, loss, and redemption into a template for a national identity narrative through which South East European nations retell their Ottoman past.  With the help of Žižek’s theory of the subject as constituted by trauma and Kant’s notion of the sublime, we will contemplate the national fixation on the trauma of loss and the dynamic between victimhood and sublimity.

2018-2019 Winter

23700/33700 How to do things with South Asian texts? Literary theories and South Asian literatures

(SALC 33700/23700)

This course provides an overview of different methods, approaches and themes currently prevalent in the study of South Asian texts from various periods.  Topics covered will include translation (theory and practice), book history, literary history, textual criticism, genre theory (the novel in South Asia), literature and colonialism, cultural mobility studies (Greenblatt) and comparative literature/new philologies (Spivak, Ette).  Readings will include work by George Steiner, Sheldon Pollock, Meenakshi Mukherjee, Terry Eagleton, Stephen Greenblatt, Gayatri Spivak, Ottmar Ette, and others.  We will discuss these different approaches with particular reference to the texts with which participating students are working for their various projects.  Students interested in both pre-modern and modern/contemporary texts are welcome.  While the course is organized primarily from a literary studies perspective, it will also be of interest to students of history, anthropology and other disciplines dealing with "texts".  The course is open to both undergraduate and graduate students (no prior knowledge of literary theory or South Asian writing is assumed).

2018-2019 Spring

24105/34105 Letters to Zion

(JWSC 24105)

This seminar centers the question: what do we mean when we describe Jewish authors and thinkers from the past as Zionist, anti-Zionist, or non-Zionist? We will approach this question by reading three correspondences: Kafka’s letters to Felice Bauer, and the correspondences between Gershom Scholem and Hannah Arendt and between Paul Celan and Ilana Shmueli. In each case, the question of Zionism and of Israel looms in the background of the exchange in some way. Our key question is: can we definitively determine the position of each of these letter-writers on the question of Zionism? And do we want to? Or does the form of the correspondence rather open a possibility for a more flexible, complex account of their positions, allowing us to think of them as changing and evolving, indeed as dialogic? In addition to the letters themselves, we will read other texts by these authors and about them, as well as background reading on the letter as genre and as historical document. We will also take note of the fact that these are all exchanges that cross the gender divide and ask how the question of Zionist ideology intersects with issues of gender in Jewish history.

2018-2019 Autumn

26210/36210 Oedipus in Zion: The Oedipal Figure in Modern Hebrew Literature

(JWSC 26210)

Historians often refer to the emergence of Zionism as an "Oedipal Revolution."Hence, the secular son's rebellion against his orthodox father is understood as the thrust that triggered the modern Jewish revolution. Alan Mintz aptly described the inter-generational rift between fathers and sons at the turn of the 20th century as a tragic yet inevitable consequence of modernity, underscoring the psychological difficulties and political dilemmas that haunted the sons who were "banished form their father's table."This seminar will focus on the (highly androcentric) oedipal figure in literary theory and explore its prominence in modern Hebrew literature. Freud's preoccupation with the Oedipus complex at the turn of the century coincided with the emergence of a powerful oedipal narrative in modern Hebrew culture. This confluence provides a fascinating backdrop to the "invention" of the Oedipus complex. We will read a variety of literary texts which rework the oedipal figure from the late 19th century to the 1980s and beyond.Although Freud's "invention" of the Oedipus complex transpired in a particular cultural and historical setting, it rapidly became a hermeneutic bedrock, a cross-cultural and trans-historical paradigm which illuminates texts as remote from one another as Sophocles' Oedipus Rex, Shakespeare's Hamlet and Kafka's "Letter to His Father." Freud first conceptualized the Oedipus complex in 1897 while he was immersed in his self-analysis and he continued to redefine its modalities throughout his career. Consequent developments in psychoanalysis – and in critical theory at large – attempted to account for the centrality of the oedipal figure, ascribing it to the social decline of the paternal imago.Various theoretical formulations of the Oedipus complex will be discussed alongside literary works which implicitly theorize the oedipal question. Why is this figure so central in Hebrew literature and what are its political implications?  What role is assigned to women in a culture which defines itself as "oedipal"?  Is there a foundational similarity between the Oedipus myth and the biblical story of the binding of Isaac? And how are these competing narratives employed in Israeli culture?   How did this figure evolve over the course of the 20th century and what are its political ramifications in different periods and for successive literary generations? We will lay a theoretical foundation for our discussion by reading Sophocles' Oedipus Rex, and Kafka's "Letter to his Father," with commentary by Freud, Girard, and Deleuze and Guattari. Thereafter, we will focus on a selection of Hebrew works of prose fiction which are available in English translation. Students working in Hebrew will be provided with the texts in the original.

2018-2019 Spring

26660/36660 The Rise of the Global New Right

(ENGL 26660/36660; SIGN 26050)

This course traces the intellectual genealogies of the rise of a Global New Right in relation to the contexts of late capitalist neoliberalism, the fall of the Soviet Union, as well as the rise of social media. The course will explore the intertwining political and intellectual histories of the Russian Eurasianist movement, Hungarian Jobbik, the American Traditional Workers Party, the French GRECE, Greek Golden Dawn, and others through their published essays, blogs, vlogs and social media. Perhaps most importantly, the course asks: can we use f-word (fascism) to describe this problem? In order to pose this question we will explore the aesthetic concerns of the New Right in relation to postmodern theory, and the affective politics of nationalism. This course thus frames the rise of a global new right interdisciplinary and comparatively as a historical, geopolitical and aesthetic problem.

2018-2019 Winter

26700/36700 Renaissance and Baroque Fairytales and Their Modern Rewritings

(ITAL 26200,ITAL 36200)

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.

2018-2019 Autumn

26701/36701 Marsilio Ficino'S "On Love"

(FNDL 21103,ITAL 23900/33900 ,REMS 33900)

This course is first of all a close reading of Marsilio Ficino’s seminal book On Love (first Latin edition De amore 1484; Ficino’s own Italian translation 1544). Ficino’s philosophical masterpiece is the foundation of the Renaissance view of love from a Neo-Platonic perspective. It is impossible to overemphasize its influence on European culture. On Love is not just a radically new interpretation of Plato’s Symposium. It is the book through which sixteenth- and seventeenth-century Europe read the love experience. Our course will analyze its multiple classical sources and its spiritual connotations. During our close reading of Ficino’s text, we will show how European writers and philosophers appropriated specific parts of this Renaissance masterpiece. In particular, we will read extensive excerpts from some important love treatises, such as Castiglione’s The Courtier (Il cortigiano), Leone Ebreo’s Dialogues on Love, Tullia d’Aragona’s On the Infinity of Love, but also selections from a variety of European poets, such as Michelangelo’s canzoniere, Maurice Scève’s Délie, and Fray Luis de León’s Poesía.

2018-2019 Winter

26810/36810 Intellectuals and Power

(ENGL 36810)

Intellectuals may be defined as those who speak truth to power, but how they speak, with what conception of truth, and in relation to what kind of power? In this course, we will try to begin to answer these questions by looking at the works and lives of some exemplary intellectuals, including Machiavelli, Carlyle, Benda, Nietzsche, Sartre, Ellison, Foucault, Sontag, and Said.

2018-2019 Winter

26912/36912 20th Century Russian & South East European Emigre Literature

(REES 29010,REES 39010)

Being alienated from myself, as painful as that may be, provides me with that exquisite distance within which perverse pleasure begins, as well as the possibility of my imagining and thinking," writes Julia Kristeva in "Strangers to Ourselves," the book from which this course takes its title. The authors whose works we are going to examine often alternate between nostalgia and the exhilaration of being set free into the breathless possibilities of new lives. Leaving home does not simply mean movement in space. Separated from the sensory boundaries that defined their old selves, immigrants inhabit a warped, fragmentary, disjointed time. Immigrant writers struggle for breath-speech, language, voice, the very stuff of their craft resounds somewhere else. Join us as we explore the pain, the struggle, the failure, and the triumph of emigration and exile. Vladimir Nabokov, Joseph Brodsky, Marina Tsvetaeva, Nina Berberova, Julia Kristeva, Alexander Hemon, Dubravka Ugrešić, Norman Manea, Miroslav Penkov, Ilija Trojanow, Tea Obreht.

2018-2019 Autumn

27451/37451 Stateless Imaginations: Global Anarchist Literature

(ENGL 27451/37451)

This course examines the literature, aesthetics, and theory of global anarchist movements, from nineteenth-century Russian anarcho-syndicalism to Kurdish stateless democratic movements of today. We will also study the literature of “proto-anarchist” writers, such as William Blake, and stateless movements with anarchist resonances, such as Maroon communities in the Caribbean.  Theorists and historians will include Dilar Dirik, Nina Gurianova, Paul Avrich, Luisa Capetillo, Emma Goldman, Maia Ramnath, and Thomas Nail.  Particular attention will be given to decolonial thought, religious anarchism, fugitivity and migration, and gender and race in anarchist literature.

 

2018-2019 Spring

27701/37701 Imaginary Worlds: The Fantastic and Magic Realism in Russia and Southeastern Europe

(REES 29018,REES 39018)

In this course, we will ask what constitutes the fantastic and magic realism as literary genres while reading some of the most interesting writings to have come out of Russia and Southeastern Europe. While considering the stylistic and narrative specificities of this narrative mode, we also think about its political functions -from subversive to escapist, to supportive of a nationalist imaginary-in different contexts and at different historic moments in the two regions.

2018-2019 Spring

28110/38110 Queer Jewish Literature

(JWSC 28110; GNSE 28110/38110)

Spanning medieval Hebrew to contemporary Yiddish, this course will explore the intersections of Jewish literature and queer theory, homophobia and antisemitism. While centered on literary studies, the syllabus will also include film, visual art, and music. Literary authors will include Bashevis Singer, Qalonymus ben Qalonymus, Irena Klepfisz, and others. Theorists will include Eve Sedgwick, Zohar Weiman-Kelman, Sander Gilman, and others. Readings will be in English translation.

2018-2019 Winter

28800/38800 The (Auto)Biography Of A Nation: Francesco De Sanctis And Benedetto Croce

(ITAL 27700/37700)

At its core, this course examines the making and legacy of Francesco De Sanctis's History of Italian Literature (1870-71), a work that distinguished literary critic René Wellek defined as "the finest history of any literature ever written" and "an active instrument of aesthetic evolution." We will read the History in the larger context of De Sanctis's corpus, including his vast epistolary exchanges, autobiographical writings, and so-called Critical Essays in order to detail his reform of Hegelian aesthetics, his redefinition of the intellectual's task after the perceived exhaustion of the Renaissance, Enlightenment, and Romantic moments, and his campaign against the bent toward erudition, philology, and antiquarianism in 19th-century European scholarship. We will compare De Sanctis's methodology to that of his scholarly models in France (Alphonse de Lamartine, Alfred Mézières) and Germany (Georg Gottfried Gervinus, Georg Voigt) to explore De Sanctis's claim that literary criticisms - not just literary cultures - are "national." In the second part of the course, we assess Benedetto Croce's appropriation of De Sanctis in his Aesthetics (1902), arguably the last, vastly influential work in its genre and we conclude with Antonio Gramsci's use of De Sanctis for the regeneration of a literary savvy Marxism or philosophy of praxis.

2018-2019 Winter

29023/39023 Returning The Gaze: The West And The Rest

(REES 29023,REES 39023,HIST 23609,HIST 33609,NEHC 29023,NEHC 39023)

Aware of being observed. And judged. Inferior... Abject… Angry... Proud… This course provides insight into identity dynamics between the “West,” as the center of economic power and self-proclaimed normative humanity, and the “Rest,” as the poor, backward, volatile periphery. We investigate the relationship between South East European self-representations and the imagined Western gaze. Inherent in the act of looking at oneself through the eyes of another is the privileging of that other’s standard. We will contemplate the responses to this existential position of identifying symbolically with a normative site outside of oneself—self-consciousness, defiance, arrogance, self-exoticization—and consider how these responses have been incorporated in the texture of the national, gender, and social identities in the region. Orhan Pamuk, Ivo Andrić, Nikos Kazantzakis, Aleko Konstantinov, Emir Kusturica, Milcho Manchevski.

2018-2019 Autumn

29024/39024 States of Surveillance

(REES 29024,REES 39024)

What does it feel to be watched and listened to all the time? Literary and cinematic works give us a glimpse into the experience of living under surveillance and explore the human effects of surveillance - the fraying of intimacy, fracturing sense of self, testing the limits of what it means to be human. Works from the former Soviet Union (Solzhenitsyn, Abram Tertz, Andrey Zvyagintsev), former Yugoslavia (Ivo Andrić, Danilo Kiš, Dušan Kovačević), Romania (Norman Manea, Cristian Mungiu), Bulgaria (Valeri Petrov), and Albania (Ismail Kadare).

2018-2019 Autumn

29500/39500 Le Regne Des Passions Au XVII

(FREN 24301,FREN 34301,REMS 34301)

The course will discuss the way in which human passions were understood and represented by seventeenth-century thinkers and writers. While the center of gravity of the course is French, authors who wrote in Spanish and English will also be present. We will read tragedies by Shakespeare, Corneille and Racine, novellas by Cervantes, Mme de Lafayette, and Saint-Réal, and excerpts from novels by Honoré d’Urfé and Fénelon. Reference will also be made to Pascal’s Pensées, Plato’s Republic, Aristotle’s Nicomachean Ethics, and Marcus Aurelius’ Meditations.

2018-2019 Spring

40000 From Baroque To Neo-Baroque

(ENGL 63400,LACS 40017,SPAN 40017)

We will take a transatlantic and hemispheric approach to examining the political, epistemological, and aesthetic dimensions of the concept of the Baroque, by reading European and Latin American theory and poetry from three centuries (17th, 20th, 21st). The course is purposefully designed to put modern and early modern texts in constant dialogue. The literary essays of 20th-c. Latin American writers such as Lezama Lima and Alfonso Reyes, for instance, will illuminate the 17th-c. poems of Góngora and Sor Juana, while these will be read in conjunction with those of José Kozer, Luis Felipe Fabre, and Tamara Kamenszain. The remarkable persistence of the Baroque across centuries, geographies, and cultures raises a number of questions. Why has the Baroque not gone out of fashion, but rather, been reborn again and again? How does this apparently recondite mode manage to remain politically relevant and articulate urgent ideas in its moment? How does the Baroque provide poets with a prism through which to explore questions of subjectivity, originality, and capital? How does the Baroque contribute to or complicate notions of intertextuality? How does a Baroque aesthetic theorize accumulation and waste in developing capitalist and late capitalist societies? How does the connection between the neo-Baroque and antropofagia, the Brazilian notion of cultural cannibalism, play out in poems not only written in Brazil, but also throughout Latin America and in the United States?

2018-2019 Autumn

22900/42900 Cinema In Africa

(CMST 24201/34201,CRES 24201/34201,ENGL 27600/48601)

This course examines Africa in film as well as films produced in Africa. It places cinema in Sub Saharan Africa in its social, cultural, and aesthetic contexts ranging from neocolonial to postcolonial, Western to Southern Africa, documentary to fiction, art cinema to TV. We will begin with La Noire de... (1966), ground-breaking film by the "father" of African cinema, Ousmane Sembene, contrasted w/ a South African film, African Jim (1959) that more closely resembles African American musical film, and anti-colonial and anti apartheid films from Lionel Rogosin's Come Back Africa (1959) to Sarah Maldoror's Sambizanga, Ousmane Sembenes Camp de Thiaroye (1984), and Jean Marie Teno'ss Afrique, Je te Plumerai (1995). The rest of the course will examine cinematic representations of tensions between urban and rural, traditional and modern life, and the different implications of these tensions for men and women, Western and Southern Africa, in fiction, documentary and ethnographic film, including 21st century work where available.PrerequisitesSecond-year standing or above in the College; recommended for advanced undergrads and grad students in CMST, CRES, African studies, English and/or Comparative Lit with interests in race and representation, Africa and the world

2018-2019 Winter

43302 Films by Akira Kurosawa and Their Literary Sources

(CMST 34922; EALC 33312; REES 39814; SCTH 34012)

This interdisciplinary graduate course focuses on nine films of Akira Kurosawa which were based on literary sources ranging from Ryunosuke Akutagawa, Georges Simenon, and Shakespeare to Dostoevsky, Tolstoy, Gorky, and Arseniev. The course will not only introduce some theoretical and intermedial problems of adaptation of literature to film but also address cultural and political implications of Kurosawa’s adaptation of classic and foreign sources. We will study how Kurosawa’s turn to literary adaptation provided a vehicle for circumventing social taboos of his time and offered a screen for addressing politically sensitive and sometimes censored topics of Japan’s militarist past, war crimes, defeat in the Second World War, and ideological conflicts of reconstruction. The course will combine film analysis with close reading of relevant literary sources, contextualized by current work of political, economic, and cultural historians of postwar Japan. Prerequisites: Good reading knowledge of Japanese; successful completion of Intro to Film, or Close Analysis of Film.

2018-2019 Winter

50105 Literary Theory: Auerbach’s Mimesis

(ENGL 52502)

This seminar will explore Western literary criticism from Plato to the late eighteenth-century conceived of as a prehistory of comparative literature as a discipline. The course will take as its particular lens the critical treatment of epic in some of the following authors: Plato, Aristotle, Longinus, Horace, Montaigne, Tasso, Giraldi, Sidney, Boileau, Le Bossu, St. Evremond, Dryden, Addison, Voltaire, Fielding, 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 with an eye to continuities and discontinuities in critical method and goals.

2018-2019 Autumn

50201 Critical Theory: How to Think About Literature

This course will introduce graduate students to critical thinking about literature.  It aims at identifying an object of study that is integral, yet flexible enough to allow for comparisons between its manifestations in various national traditions.We will start from the assumption that in literature new trends and theories usually continue to focus on the same objects of study: the specificity of literature, its links with cultural history, genre, the role of the author, and the nature of literary understanding.  Thus, while in physics and biology Aristotle has long been obsolete, literary scholars still find his Poetics to be a source of important insights for understanding genre.  Yet literary studies, far from being resistant to change, have over time experienced a genuine historical growth.  Perhaps one can best describe the discipline of literature as a stable field of recurring issues in which innovative thinking blends with tradition.

2018-2019 Winter

Adaptation & Translation in Theater-Making

(TAPS 20610/ 30610)

This course combines seminar and studio practices to investigate the ways in which theater and performance-makers create work in relation to shifting contexts. How are theatre adaptations and translations shaped by aesthetics, geography, socio-economic conditions, cultural transition, shifting formulations of race, ethnicity, and gender? How do theatre-makers conceive and realize the resonance of their work within local and across transnational spaces?  This course explores these and other questions through practical experiments in adaptation and translation, case studies of artists, attending performances, critical readings on adaptation and translation theory, and discussions of the relationship between art and national and transnational political imaginaries.  At the center of the course is a visit from the artistic directors of two theater companies working with translations and adaptations of "World Literature" for a (post)Soviet context, one based in Uzbekistan and the other in Kazakhstan.  We hope the exposure to their working processes will animate the questions of the course in exciting and unpredictable ways. For their final project, students will have the option of writing a critical paper, writing a proposal for a speculative work, or creating an artistic work. Offered to undergraduate and graduate students.

22500/32500 History of International Cinema II: Sound Era to 1960

(ARTH 28600 / ARTH 38600 / ARTV 20003 / CMLT 22500 / CMLT 32500 / CMST 48600 / ENGL 29600 / ENGL 48900 / MAAD 18600 / MAPH 33700 / REES 25005 / REES 45005)

The center of this course is film style, from the classical scene breakdown to the introduction of deep focus, stylistic experimentation, and technical innovation (sound, wide screen, location shooting). The development of a film culture is also discussed. Texts include Thompson and Bordwell's Film History: An Introduction; and works by Bazin, Belton, Sitney, and Godard. Screenings include films by Hitchcock, Welles, Rossellini, Bresson, Ozu, Antonioni, and Renoir.