Spring 2020 Courses

 

 

ENG 107 INTRODUCTION TO CREATIVE WRITING         

Andrew Milward       

This course is an introduction to three genres of creative writing: fiction, creative nonfiction, and poetry. Students will first learn the craft elements unique to each genre by reading widely from professional examples before applying that knowledge toward the composition of their own original stories, essays, and poems. Students will meet both in a large lecture class and in smaller breakout sessions where their creative works will be discussed and critiqued. This course fulfills the UK Core requirement for Intellectual Inquiry in Arts & Creativity. 

ENG 107 INTRODUCTION TO CREATIVE WRITING         

Ansel Elkins   

Joan Didion wrote, “We tell stories in order to live.” This class is about exploring ways to tell stories with imagination and daring, with curiosity and inventiveness. This semester you will be challenged to write, read, and think outside the box. Students will be encouraged to be playful with language, and experiment with different forms and genres, including poems, short stories, essays, and mixed genres, all while learning about the craft of writing. Ultimately, we will try to answer Toni Morrison’s question, “What do I need in order to release my imagination?” This course fulfills the UK Core requirement for Intellectual Inquiry in Arts & Creativity. 

ENG 107 INTRODUCTION TO CREATIVE WRITING         

Julia M. Johnson

An introduction to the genres and craft of creative writing, including fiction, nonfiction, and poetry. Students will study and practice writing in various modes through composition, peer critique, and research. Lecture or lecture with discussion section. Offers credit for the UK Core requirement in Intellectual Inquiry in Arts & Creativity. Provides ENG minor credit.

ENG 130 LITERARY ENCOUNTERS: Revenge

Frederick Bengtsson  

Revenge: A kind of wild justice, a way of getting retribution when society has failed you, or part of an unending cycle of bloody violence that threatens to destroy society itself? Writers and artists have asked this question for thousands of years, making revenge one of the most enduring literary and artistic themes. From the familial, mythical dramas of the ancient Greeks where wives kills husbands and children kill their parents, to the spectacular violence of Renaissance revenge tragedies where blood flows freely and body parts litter the stage, to the frontier justice of the American Western where the good guys go after the bad guys, this class will consider revenge stories in all their variety. Grade will be based on a midterm, a final exam, and regular written assignments. This course fulfills the UK Core requirement for Intellectual Inquiry in Arts & Creativity. 

ENG 130 LITERARY ENCOUNTERS: The Road in American Culture

Andrew Doolen         

This course explores the significance of the road narrative in American culture.  Experiences of travel have provided writers, artists, filmmakers, and musicians with many opportunities to test themselves, to remake their identities, and to imagine new futures unencumbered by the past. The road narratives that we will study are essentially about a journey towards self-discovery, but this pervasive theme is inspired by the author’s irresistible desire to break free from society’s restraints—from poverty, racial segregation, and stifling hometowns, to sexism, geographical isolation, and the moral prohibitions of an older generation. Stories about the road often dream of freedom and possibility, even as the author, ironically enough, is being forced into exile. We will pay close attention to how the unique experiences of race, class, gender, and citizenship influence the themes and issues of road narratives. The course will examine a range of texts, including literature, film, photography, art, and music. This course fulfills the UK Core requirement for Intellectual Inquiry in Arts & Creativity. 

ENG 130 LITERARY ENCOUNTERS: On the Road:  Black Travel Narratives        

Rynetta S Davis         

This course introduces students to literary works of various styles that deal with current subjects and creative applications. Topics vary by semester and are chosen to give a broad-based understanding of literary works, genres, creative techniques, or cultural trends (e.g., Literature and Other Art Forms; Film, Art, & Social Protest; Creative Writing, Mixed Media, & Social Media). See departmental listings for different offerings per semester. Provides ENG Major or Minor Elective credit.

ENG 130 LITERARY ENCOUNTERS: Self/Story         

Marion L. Rust

Self-narrative – sometimes known as “autobiography” or “memoir” – is one of the richest forms of creative nonfiction in existence, and it is not as easy as it looks. This class will engage with a number of groundbreaking self-narratives to inspire us as we write our own self-stories. Possibilities include James Baldwin’s The Fire Next Time, Ta-Nehisi Coates’ Between the World and Me, Claudia Rankine’s Citizen: An American Lyric, Kayleb Rae Candrilli’s What Runs Over, Kate Tempest’s Hold Your Own, Marina Keegan’s The Opposite of Loneliness, Roxane Gay’s Bad Feminist, Sonia Sotomayor’s My Beloved World, and Patti Smith’s Just Kids. One thing that unites all the readings in this class is that each writer was inspired to publish in order to confront, reveal and come to terms with unexpected hardship, as well as unforeseen joy. This course fulfills the UK Core requirement for Intellectual Inquiry in Arts & Creativity. 

ENG 142 GLOBAL SHAKESPEARE

Emily E Shortslef

First written and performed in late sixteenth- and early seventeenth-century England, Shakespeare’s plays have had long and fascinating afterlives within as well as outside of Great Britain and the English language. In this course, we’ll read four of Shakespeare’s best-known plays (Romeo and Juliet, Hamlet, Othello, and The Tempest) alongside adaptations of these works from around the world. As we read the plays, we’ll discuss the theatrical culture and social milieu of Shakespeare’s England, but we’ll also consider what makes these plays so suited to reinterpretation and retelling across differences of language, culture, place, and time. The selected adaptations will allow us to examine the interpretive choices that these directors and writers have made in their engagements with Shakespeare, and to explore the implications of those choices. In addition to thinking about how Shakespeare’s dramas have been and continue to be rich sites for exploring cultural difference and cultural exchange, we will consider how—against long and ongoing histories of colonialist and racist uses of Shakespeare—various artists and activists have enlisted Shakespeare for anticolonialist and antiracist purposes. This course fulfills the UK Core requirement for Humanities and Global Dynamics. 

ENG 168 Jazz and Democracy       

DaMaris B. Hill         

This course is designed to be a hybrid cultural studies seminar and creative composition course that explores jazz theory as a philosophical artistic practice rooted in American democracy.  This course will explore jazz aesthetics as a literary, visual, and musical art form. It will also examine theories of jazz composition as philosophical statements that are in direct conversation with the principles of American democracy.  The course will also discuss the philosophical and aesthetic relationship that connects jazz literature to surrealist and existentialist artistic movements in modern and postmodern cultural contexts. Artists, some of who may be considered marginalized citizens, to be discussed include James Baldwin, Harryette Mullen, and others. The theoretical aspects of this course will demonstrate how jazz has been a source of inspiration for a variety of twentieth-century literatures and theoretical practices. The readings will be selections of fiction, poetry, drama, and essays with emphasis on jazz literary modes, creative trends, and political connotations specific to African American literature and culture. This course fulfills the UK Core requirement for Intellectual Inquiry in Arts & Creativity and Citizenship

ENG 171 Global Literature in English      

Chinwe Morah           

This class is an examination of the diversity found in modern Anglophone literature from around the world. We will dissect the idea of ‘Global English Literature’ and see how the worth of different texts have evolved, and continues to evolve. This will be a chance to appreciate how the English language evolves and adapts as it journeys around the globe. We will discuss how influences such as colonialism, imperialism, and globalization shaped the styles and subject matters of English literature, and will ask why it is important that we are exposed to the diverse range of stories told in English around the world. To do this, we will look at diverse depictions of identities such as race, gender, and sexual identity, and how individuals around the world cope with poverty, sexism, racism, and displacement. We will read texts written and set in Europe, Africa, and Asia, and most texts will focus on Anglophone bildungsromans (coming of age stories). This course fulfills the UK Core requirement for Global Dynamics. 

ENG 180 Great Movies: Man and Machine          

Ezekiel Perkins          

A course introducing students to films of various genres and styles, from both historical and contemporary filmmakers, investigating the theme of men and machines. There will be three segments to the class: man, machine, and monsters; empire and machine; and man, machine and revolt. Students will get a broad-based understanding of important cinematic works, trends, and the creative processes behind this important, collaborative artform. As with all Arts and Creativity classes, this class will require students to produce an artistic artifact. Intended as a general humanities course for non-majors. Lecture and section. See departmental listings for different offerings per semester. Does not fulfill ENG premajor requirement or provide ENG Major Elective credit. Fulfills the UK Core requirement in Arts and Creativity and Humanities.

ENG 180 Great Movies: The Surreal

John P Larson

Surrealism is formally born in 1924, in France, when Andre Breton publishes the first "Surrealist Manifesto." This course will explore how the surrealists, broadly speaking, asserted "complete nonconformism," in their art. We will start by examining the methods and techniques developed by early surrealist filmmakers to invent a surrealist aesthetic for the screen, bringing what had been conceived as primarily a literary movement into the silent film halls of 20's Paris. From there, we will observe how surrealist method and aesthetic leaves the domain of a small group of Parisian artist-intellectuals and enters the homes of 40's Californians with Kenneth Anger, Mexican midnight movie houses in 70's with Alejandro Jodorowsky, post-war Japan with Nobohiku Obayashi, American TV sets in the 90's with David Lynch, and now, with the short videos of the YouTube-era, the pockets of everyone with internet access (surrealism, I will argue, is more relevant to the zeitgeist than ever). Because this course fulfills the UK Core in the Arts and Creativity, we will not be taking long exams or writing formal analytical papers. Instead, we will produce creative projects of our own to assess more completely our understanding of the concepts covered in the course. A fair warning before you register: your tastes will be tested, your sensibilities challenged, your appreciation (I pray) expanded and intensified. But if that sounds all right with you, please join us on this enlightening and mind-bending journey into the surreal.

ENG 180 Great Movies: American Films of the 1950s
Alan M Nadel

We will examine very closely eight American films made in the 1950s: Including Singin’ in the Rain, Shane, The Searchers, The Defiant Ones, Rebel without a Cause and North by Northwest. Our goal will be to understand how all the elements of filmmaking—script, cinematography, editing, mise-en-scène—are employed in in film to produce its meanings and effects. We will also attend closely to the ways in each film reflects the social and cinematic conventions and the cultural themes of its historical moment. Requirements: eight short quizzes, four multiple-choice exams, and a comprehensive final. There are no textbooks, but students are required to see the films on their own; many are available free online or through streaming services; others can be purchased at a nominal fee second hand on Amazon. Fulfills the UK Core requirement in Arts and Creativity and Humanities.

ENG 180 Great Movies: The Greatest

Randall Roorda

You want great movies? In this class we’ll watch the ten greatest ever—so designated in a poll of pros run every ten years by the film studies magazine Sight and Sound. We’ll watch the top ten films on this list, including Vertigo, the current greatest-of-all-time. We’ll run smack into what makes for greatness in a picture, what qualities conduce to such judgments, how “greatest” compares with most popular or money-making or even enjoyable, how you as viewers apprehend or bask in or quail before their glory. Considering the requirement the course fulfills (UK Core in arts and creativity), we won’t study and analyze so much as talk back to, take off from, and make something of what we watch, with activities each week prompting you to do this: to get creative in some manner of speaking, while also taking stock of what’s so creative about what’s so great about the greatest efforts in this art form, the greatest or at least most popular around. No exams, no formal papers: these activities (including on-the-spot efforts as well as creative projects) will comprise the work of the class.

ENG 180 Great Movies: Men and Machines

Matthew Godbey       

This semester we’ll explore one of the most popular storylines in movies, and one that is incredibly relevant to life today: humans and their relationships to machines and technology. Technical marvels themselves, movies provide filmmakers with a perfect medium for telling stories about our relationship to technology, whether in the form of cars, clones, computers, or cameras. Over the course of the semester, we’ll explore this rapidly evolving relationship by watching a variety of films drawn from diverse time periods and genres. Whether its movies dealing with artificial intelligence and the nature of humanity or our emotional attachment to man-made marvels, we’ll range far and wide through the history of cinema and see what these movies can tell us about the ever-changing and always-complicated world of man and machines.  The course is also designed as an introduction to the study of film itself, and we’ll get to know some of the important aspects of filmmaking and you’ll learn for yourself it means for a film to be great. Fulfills the UK Core requirement in Arts and Creativity and Humanities.          

ENG 180 GREAT MOVIES: Popular 21st Century African Films

Kamahra Ewing         

This course examines historical foundation and contemporary African movie-films. Media captures the local, national, and international narratives of producers and filmmakers. Students will be introduced to cinema as a visual artistic medium in a non-western context through technical and formal and content analysis. As a methodology both films and documentaries will be analyzed as texts to explore visual representations of African identity from famous movie directors such as: Osumane Sembene, Haile Gerima, and Tunde Kelani. We will discuss the different aesthetic forms and genres chosen by the filmmakers (i.e. social realism, avant-gardism, magical realism, melodrama, etc.) and also look at the types of social critiques the films engage in as they tackle topics such as gender politics, polygamy, migration, corruption, occultism, human rights, homosexuality, economic crisis, apartheid, and Westernization. The course will allow students to develop and creatively practice critical and analytical skills necessary for assessing visual media. Fulfills the UK Core requirement in Arts and Creativity and Humanities.

ENG 180 Great Movies: The Fictions of Film

Peter Williams

This introduction to film will survey the terminology, technique, and effects of cinema by watching and analyzing film from the early Twentieth century to the contemporary. In considering the process of cinematic production, this course will focus on several iterations of the archetypical stories. Certain stories get retold over and over again and we will look at how and why this happens. Some of the story types we will look at are the Pygmalion myth, the odyssey narrative, and the detective plot. Some possible films include: Born Yesterday, 1950; Vertigo, 1958; Phantom Thread, 2017; Once Upon a Time in the West, 1968; Do The Right Thing, 1989; The Great Beauty, 2013; Touch of Evil, 1958; and Blade Runner, 1982. What makes these stories so pervasive? How do the choices made by creators and production companies influence the retelling of the story and how do they reflect the culture? Regular participation will be expected. Students will also be required to make a creative artifact related to the themes discussed in class. Fulfills the UK Core requirement in Arts and Creativity and Humanities.

ENG 191 Literature and the Arts of Citizenship: This is My Home (Now)        

Jennifer Murray

Immigration and the ethnic and cultural makeup of the United States is a hot button political topic in our current moment.  It isn’t, however, a new debate. Who belongs and who doesn’t has been at issue since the earliest days of the republic.  This UK Core course examines citizenship and belonging through an intersectional lens that includes conceptions of race, class, gender, ability, and national origin as modes of inclusion or exclusion from full participation in American society. Our reading list will present multiple perspectives of what it means to (try to be) an active member of society and what obstacles one may face in doing so.  The literature -- stories, poems, plays, essays, and political writings -- we read will offer a backdrop of voices through which we will begin to consider the many and varied ways in which individuals experience life in America. Fulfills the UK Core requirement in Citizenship and Humanities.

ENG 207 BEG WKSP IMAG WRIT: Fiction       

Peter Williams

A beginning workshop in the craft of writing, teaching students how to read critically and how to revise work in progress. The students provide an audience for each others' work. Exercises involve practice in aspects of craft and promote experimentation with different forms, subjects, and approaches; outside reading provides models and inspiration. May be repeated under different subtitles to a maximum of 6 credits. Does not fulfill ENG premajor requirement. Provides ENG Major Elective credit and ENG minor credit. Required for ENG Creative Writing Option.

ENG 207 BEG WKSP IMAG WRIT: Poetry       

Leigh Glanzman         

This hybrid course asks students to critically examine published poetry in a variety of forms and modes, and to apply those critical skills to the craft and revision of their own poetic work and that of their classmates. Students will explore and refine their poetic voice and style, and begin to develop a personal aesthetic in their writing.

ENG 207 BEG WKSP IMAG WRIT: Creative Nonfiction

Raquel Olive  

This class is dedicated to the art of creative nonfiction—a genre that employs literary styles and techniques to craft narratives based on personal life experience. In this class students will gain an understanding of literary techniques such as scene, dialogue, character and detail; and how to apply these techniques to construct a narrative. Throughout the course students will be required to read works by contemporary authors and discuss the techniques they use to convey their ideas. Students will also be required to demonstrate their understanding of creative nonfiction by drafting and sharing their own personal essays.

ENG 207 BEG WKSP IMAG WRIT: Fiction

Ash Baker      

A beginning workshop in the craft of writing, teaching students how to read critically and how to revise work in progress. The students provide an audience for each others' work. Exercises involve practice in aspects of craft and promote experimentation with different forms, subjects, and approaches; outside reading provides models and inspiration. May be repeated under different subtitles to a maximum of 6 credits. Does not fulfill ENG premajor requirement. Provides ENG Major Elective credit and ENG minor credit. Required for ENG Creative Writing Option.

ENG 207 BEG WKSP IMAG WRIT: Screenwriting

John D Howell

In this small and personalized class you’ll be reading and studying screenplays, watching film clips, and reading various short .pdf's to help you develop a working familiarity with screenplay format, narrative structures, characters, settings, dialogue etc. Most of that familiarity will be generated through writing you’ll do both in and out of class, which will include some specialized forms and -- necessarily and most importantly -- a screenplay for a short film or a portion of a feature-length film. The class will also require cooperative activities such as group-work on various pieces of writing as well as workshopping as much as we can manage, especially as the semester progresses and you’re submitting your screenplay material. Grades will be based on timely submission of the various writing assignments, participation, and a Portfolio containing revised screenwriting work.

ENG 230 INTRO TO LIT: Mystery, Mayhem, & Murder

Shannon Branfield

Secret identities. A locked room murder. A detective in disguise. Mystery stories have fascinated audiences for centuries, as we race the detective to see if we can figure out whodunnit. But detective stories offer more than a puzzle for the reader to solve. Beneath the suspense and vicarious thrill, they ask questions about justice, criminality, the legal system, and social order. In this class, we will investigate the figure of detective and their connection, or opposition, to society. From the classic detectives Sherlock Holmes and Hercule Poirot to modern television and film detectives such as Veronica Mars, this class will use a variety of media to examine changes in the detective fiction genre, and detectives themselves. In doing so, this class will introduce students to the basics of literature, interpretation, and argument, and we will produce work in written, oral, and digital forms. Fulfills the UK Core requirement in Humanities.

ENG 241 SURVEY OF BRITISH LITERATURE I       

Joyce MacDonald      

English 241 is a survey of the development of British (not just “English”) literature from its beginnings through the early seventeenth century. Obviously, we will not be able to cover all literary developments in a period of more than a thousand years in equal depth. Instead, the course will have four major goals:

  • To give students an overview of the major modes of writing, significant texts, and important authors in the English language over this long period
  • To trace a history of the development of the English language over time
  • To help students build a critical vocabulary for discussing and analyzing pre-modern literature
  • To introduce students to important research tools for studying and writing about literature

ENG 241 counts toward the survey requirement for the English major and may fulfill other requirements for other majors in and out of Arts and Sciences.

ENG 242 Survey of British Literature II  

Lisa Zunshine

English 242 is the second part of the British literature survey, covering the period from the late seventeenth to the twentieth century, focusing on the cultural history of literature and on major genres and authors. We’ll start with a Restoration comedy, move on to a novel doubling as a criminal autobiography, and conclude with a play about mistaken identities. Requirements include regular attendance, quizzes, and two long papers. 

ENG 251 Survey of American Literature I: American Contact Zones

Michelle Sizemore     

Emily Dickinson. Frederick Douglass. Hannah Foster. Edgar Allan Poe. Phillis Wheatley. Herman Melville. (And many more). In this survey of American literature from its origins through the Civil War, we will cover authors whose names have become synonymous with early American literature, as well as authors whose names you have never heard but will long remember after reading them. A course that spans over four centuries must be selective. We will therefore focus on key literary problems and developments during this period and the social conditions in which this literature was produced—colonization, slavery, revolution, the emergence of women’s rights. Our guiding approach to “America” and “American” literature is through multiple “contact zones”—social spaces of interaction and exchange wherein diverse participants negotiate geographical, social, political, and literary boundaries. This framework opens up a range of topics for our consideration, from the dynamics of colonial encounters to canon formation and reformation. Lecture on Mondays and Wednesdays, discussion on Fridays.

ENG 252 Survey of American Literature II         

Michael W Carter

After the United States fought itself in its bloody Civil War, it began to find distinct literary voices. From the late 19th century’s Mark Twain to Nobel winner Toni Morrison, the works show the diversity that mixes the melting pot. The survey course will wander (or wonder) through the decades, from Romanticism through Realism and Regionalism into the Post Modern, to see how that literary voice has continued to evolve. We will read through a variety of authors and let them tell us about who we are as Americans. Several short essays, a midterm and daily discussions will be our ever changing dance.

ENG 260 INTRODUCTION TO BLACK WRITERS    

Rynetta S Davis         

An introduction to written and oral works by Black authors of Africa, the Caribbean, and the United States. The course includes writers such as Chinua Achebe (Africa), Wilson Harris (Caribbean), and Toni Morrison (USA), as well as others from the diverse field of literature written by African-American authors and authors of color worldwide. Attention will be paid to student writing, particularly to devising a thesis, crafting an argument, and learning how to use supporting evidence. See departmental listings for different offerings per semester. Offers UK Core credit for Intellectual Inquiry in the Humanities. Fulfills ENG premajor requirement. Can be taken for ENG Major Elective credit. Provides ENG minor credit. Credit will not be given to students who already have credit for ENG 264. Same as AAS 264.

ENG 260 INTRODUCTION TO BLACK WRITERS    

Nazera S. Wright       

An introduction to written and oral works by Black authors of Africa, the Caribbean, and the United States. The course includes writers such as Chinua Achebe (Africa), Wilson Harris (Caribbean), and Toni Morrison (USA), as well as others from the diverse field of literature written by African-American authors and authors of color worldwide. Attention will be paid to student writing, particularly to devising a thesis, crafting an argument, and learning how to use supporting evidence. See departmental listings for different offerings per semester. Offers UK Core credit for Intellectual Inquiry in the Humanities. Fulfills ENG premajor requirement. Can be taken for ENG Major Elective credit. Provides ENG minor credit. Credit will not be given to students who already have credit for ENG 264. Same as AAS 264.

ENG 280 Introduction to Film        

Jordan Brower

This course is an introduction in two senses: to the wild array of possibilities of the medium and to the careful study of those possibilities. The anti-theme of the course is, therefore, variety. We will watch moving images as unlike each other as possible, in a range of formats (celluloid, digital), modes (fiction, documentary, animation), intended audience (mainstream, niche), and national origin. Coherence will be provided by patient attention to the technique and form of cinema: to the properties of the moving image itself (mise-en-scène, cinematography, editing, sound) as well as the conditions of spectatorship. The question that has occupied critics, scholars, and theorists for decades—what is cinema?—will goad us throughout the semester. Assessment will involve weekly quizzes, short writing assignments, and a final exam. Fulfills the UK Core requirement in Humanities.

ENG 280 Introduction to Film        

John D Howell           

This is a basic introduction to the study of film, which includes film history as well as elements and subjects such as mise-en-scène, cinematography, sound, editing, narrative structures, and film genres. There will be frequent in-class screening of clips, trailers, and shorts (even a cartoon or two). But our primary focus will be 11-12 feature-length films that range across time and genres (comedy, horror, western, crime etc.). There will be at least one foreign film, black-and-white films, and R-rated films; all will be screened in WillyT's AV room on the day before we discuss them, all will be on reserve in the library, and most films can be streamed for a small fee. Each week will center on a different film, and by the end of the semester you will have seen some of the world’s significant films, plus you’ll be acquainted with many film artists and films that are new to you -- you’ll be a more sophisticated filmgoer. Your grade for the course will be based on weekly short quizzes, short writing assignments, and a final exam. Fulfills the UK Core requirement in Humanities.

ENG 280 Introduction to Film        

Michael W Carter

This course will examine the lens through which film making shows us ourselves, our world, and our ever changing culture. Since film’s earliest days controversies have waxed and waned within the cinema (violence, sex, and language anyone?) and various methods of censoring or restricting the medium have been attempted, and still film thrives as a major industry. Perhaps films persist because whether live actors, animation, historical, contemporary, or futuristic, film presents a view of humanity that the writers and directors bring to life visually, aurally, and emotionally. We will consider all parts of the process and product.  You will be required to write two (2) critical responses to the films which will be the bulk of your grade for the course. The remainder of the grade will be determined from attendance, regular quizzes, and a midterm test. You will have no text to purchase but the films will require out-of-class viewing of the films and attendant costs (approximately one a week) through some external means, Amazon, Hulu, Netflix, etc.  Each week will feature a different film, and by the end of the semester you will have seen some great films, plus you’ll be acquainted with many film artists and films that are new to you: you’ll be a more knowledgeable, sophisticated filmgoer. Fulfills the UK Core requirement in Humanities.

ENG 280 Introduction to Film        

Pearl James    

This is a basic introduction to the study of film. We will learn to analyze mise-en-scène, editing, cinematography, sound, film genres, and narrative structure all by focusing on films that try to tell war stories. We will ask:  Is war beautiful? Can its violence be represented on film?  There will be at least one silent film, one foreign film, and several R-rated films.  (If graphic language, nudity, sexuality and violence will offend you, you should drop the class.)  All films will be on reserve and available to you in the library and of course some will be online.  Plan to view a film a week, take quizzes and tests, write short papers, and do a final paper or project. Fulfills the UK Core requirement in Humanities.

ENG 280 Introduction to Film        

Frederick Bengtsson

This course will introduce students to the study of cinema as a medium, and to the tools and vocabulary of film analysis. By learning about and attending to key elements of film production and form (genre, cinematography, mise-en-scène, editing, sound and lighting, etc.) in a variety of films, we will consider the ways in which filmmakers shape our experience of their work and create meaning within it. We will move beyond watching films passively toward thinking about them analytically, both in artistic and aesthetic terms, and in terms of the ideas and ideologies they articulate, reinforce, and resist. Grade will be based on a midterm, a final exam, and regular written assignments. Viewing films outside of class is required. Fulfills the UK Core requirement in Humanities.

ENG 285 History of Film II

Jordan Brower

Shortly after 1945, the Cold War set in, the Hollywood studio system collapsed, and cinema took a backseat to television (and subsequently other technologies) as the principal source of entertainment in the U.S. and around the world. This course will introduce students to some of the extraordinary films that come out of this chaos, confusion, and anxiety. In addition to American films from major studios as well as independents, we will study highlights from international art cinemas of Italy (neorealism), France (the New Wave), Japan (e.g. Ozu, Kurosawa), and Germany. Throughout, we will pay close attention to particular uses of filmmaking technique as they contribute to the style and meaning of films. Assessment will involve weekly quizzes, short writing assignments, and a final exam.

ENG 290 Introduction to Women's Literature: Re-sisters: Radical Women Across Literature 

Margaret Kelly           

The phrase “like a girl” has gone from ballpark insult to the title of Lizzo’s feminist anthem of the same name. How did we get here? What does it mean to be or act “like a girl”? For centuries, women and girls in literature and popular culture have been subject to a wide array of stereotypes from the damsel in distress to the mammy. In this class, we will focus on how women authors write and revise the perceived roles of women and girls throughout the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. From Virginia Woolf’s essay “A Room of One’s Own” (1929) to Beyoncé’s visual album Lemonade (2016), we will examine how women writers over the past century have resisted and/or challenged social, cultural, and political prescriptions of women’s roles through both the form and the content of their literature. We will explore various forms of resistance from the quiet cultivation of interiority in Gwendolyn Brooks’s Maud Martha (1953) to the outspoken political poetry of Adrienne Rich and Warsan Shire. In this course, we will read both canonical and non-canonical writers in a variety of genres. Assignments will likely include several short close reading essays, a longer literary analysis essay, a presentation, and occasional reading quizzes. Fulfills the UK Core requirement in Humanities.

ENG 330 TEXT AND CONTEXT: King Lear, Macbeth, and the Gunpowder Plot    

Walt C Foreman         

In early November 1605, a group of conspirators planted thirty-six barrels of gunpowder under the English parliament building, intending to blow up King James and many of the country's political leaders, producing a chaos that would open the way for a radical political and religious change.  The horrific plot was discovered before it could be carried out, and a horrific reprisal ensued.  This section of the English major core course will focus on the close reading and analysis of Shakespeare's King Lear and Macbeth in the contexts of (a) London theater conditions around 1605-06, (b) other plays produced around the same time (such as Ben Jonson's Volpone and Thomas Middleton's Revenger's Tragedy), (c) various non-dramatic texts from the period, and (d) the political, religious, social, and economic situation in England in which these plays appeared, especially the Gunpowder Plot and its aftermath.  As noted in the general catalog description, students will develop analytical and interpretive skills that deepen their historical and conceptual understanding of literature, as well as their skills of critical reading, writing, and presentation.  In particular, in this section we will seek to develop, partly through the use of videos of a variety of performances, the involvement in literature fostered by aural/oral immersion.

ENG 330 TEXT AND CONTEXT: Toni Morrison’s THE BLUEST EYE (1970)

Nazera S. Wright

The core course in the English Major focusing on the close reading and analysis of a single major literary text, or a focused set of texts, in historical and critical context. Students will develop analytical and interpretive skills that deepen their historical and conceptual understanding of literature, as well as their skills of critical reading, writing, and presentation. See departmental listings for different offerings per semester. ENG major and minor requirement. Repeatable for up to six hours of credit.

ENG 330 TEXT AND CONTEXT: Melville’s Moby-Dick and Shakespeare

Armando J Prats

“Dolt & ass that I am I have lived more than 29 years, & until a few days ago, never made close acquaintance with the divine William.” So wrote Herman Melville to his friend and literary sponsor, Evert Duyckinck during the time that he was writing Moby-Dick (1851). From a young age Melville had suffered from bad eyesight, and so had never seriously read Shakespeare because most editions were printed in too small a font. But he had recently gained access to a seven-volume Complete Works in large print. It was for him an awakening with profound consequences. Until that time in his life, Melville said to Nathaniel Hawthorne, he had not been a creature of much deep thought: he had, it is true, written five novels before Moby-Dick, but his literary fame was for the most part bound with his reputation as a man who had “lived among cannibals” in the Marquesas. Now, however, he aspired to deeper things and considered basing his novel—originally entitled The Whale—on the tragedy of the American whaling ship Essex, which was rammed by a sperm whale and sank some 1,500 miles from land. So arduous was the return, that the survivors made it only because they ate the ones who kept dying from starvation. But now, in the summer of 1850, reading Shakespeare seems to have moved him to be the American version of Shakespeare. This course proposes to read (whole or in parts) some of the Shakespeare plays that inspired Melville—and that are palpably present in Moby-Dick. The Shakespeare plays that we will read whole are Macbeth, King Lear, The Tempest, and (perhaps), A Midsummer Night’s Dream. But we will read Shakespeare with a view not to identifying Melville’s references and allusions (that’s the snob’s shallow game), but to ascertaining how Melville may have in fact integrated and transformed Shakespeare’s characters, language, and even plots into a genuinely and highly original—and most of all American—literary achievement; for if Melville revered Shakespeare to the extent of referring to him as the Messiah, he also scorned the English devotion to Shakespeare that had devolved into an unseemly “superstition,” one that explicitly dismissed the possibility that anyone—least of all an American—could ever reach his heights of literary achievement. Ours, then, is not a competition between Shakespeare and Melville, English and American but a search for insights into the ways that “influence,” with or without an attendant “anxiety,” can account for the persistence of literary genius. NO CELLPHONES, NO LAPTOPS

ENG 330 TEXT AND CONTEXT: Jane Austen     

Lisa Zunshine

We will read closely six novels by Jane Austen, in their cultural and historical contexts, and (if time allows) consider some of their screen adaptations. Course requirements include quizzes, short writing assignments, and two long papers.

ENG 337 LIT AND GENRE: American Drama  

Alan M Nadel

We will examine two plays each by eight major American playwrights: Edward Albee, Lorraine Hansberry, Lillian Hellman, Beth Henley, Arthur Miller, Eugene O’Neill, Tennessee Williams, and August Wilson. Our discussion will concentrate on the way each adapts the conventions of Western drama to express thematically and stylistically the issues of dramatic cogency particular to their historical moment. We will attend very closely to each playwright’s use of language and to the way that the language is interpreted in its performance. Requirements: eight short quizzes, three take-home exams, a final exam, and posted questions.

ENG 341 Chaucer and His Contemporaries         

Matthew Giancarlo    

A course covering medieval English literature from around the years 1350-1450 and centering on the works of Geoffrey Chaucer (c. 1340-1400), particularly his early dream-visions and The Canterbury Tales. Other authors and texts may include William Langland?s Piers Plowman; the poetry of John Gower; Sir Gawain and the Green Knight and the works of the Pearl-Poet; Thomas Hoccleve; Margery Kempe; anonymous romances and Arthurian narratives; and more. Topics include courtly love and chivalry; Christian spirituality; women and gender roles; feudal politics and rebellion. Fulfills the ENG Early Period requirement. Provides ENG Major Elective credit and ENG minor credit. Prereq: Completion of UK Core Composition and Communication I-II requirement or equivalent.

ENG 368 Contemporary African-American Voices         

Crystal E. Wilkinson

This course examines black culture, literature, music,  and film from mid-20th century to the present. Exploring an array of genres and forms, we will explore aesthetic, critical and political issues related to the Black Arts Movement of the 1960s, the Third Renaissance of the 1980s and 90s, the Me Too Movement and others. This course examines how folklore and work songs, the blues, jazz, and rap, all shape cultural and literary production. Authors may include Toni Morrison, Ernest Gaines, Gloria Naylor, Boots Riley, Keise Layman, India Arie, The Coup, Nikky Finney, The Carolina Chocolate Drops and others.

ENG 380 FILM AND GENRE: Appalachia through Documentary Film         

Catharine Axley

This course is rooted in Appalshop’s films and history, with counter-point examinations of place-based filmmaking practices in three other North American communities, all the while exploring the cultural, political, and economic significance and challenges of making nonfiction films about and for one’s own community. Concurrent with this study, students will engage with oral histories and archival materials housed on campus to develop digital storytelling skills and edit materials that may be shared with the 2020 Appalachian Studies Association conference. A final multi-media project offers students the chance to establish a place-based practice of their own.

ENG 384 Literature and Film: THE VIETNAM WAR

Armando J Prats

This course will study the distinctive literature of America’s Vietnam War as well as the more significant Hollywood films of that War. We will read Michael Herr’s Dispatches, Tim O’Brien’s The Things They Carried, Philip Caputo’s A Rumor of War, and Tobias Wolff’s In Pharaoh’s Army, and W.D. Ehrhart’s Vietnam / Perkasie. We will compare and contrast the literature with the Hollywood movies produced and released only after the end of the war (all but John Wayne’s The Green Berets): The Boys in Company C; The Deer Hunter; Coming Home; Go Tell the Spartans; Apocalypse Now; First Blood (a. k. a.) Rambo; Rambo First Blood Part II; Red Dawn (1984); Platoon; Hamburger Hill; Full Metal Jacket; and We Were Soldiers. In addition to these Hollywood movies we will screen all the episodes of the recent documentary by Ken Burns and Lynn Novick, The Vietnam War. You will also be responsible for studying material placed on Canvas’ “File” section. Please note that all films will be viewed outside of class, and that you are responsible for screening all the movies. Many of these films, both fiction and documentary, show graphic images of violence. Some also show brief scenes of nudity. If you cannot morally abide R-rated movies you will have to withdraw from the course. There are no substitute movies.  NO CELLPHONES, NO LAPTOPS, NO EXCEPTIONS.

ENG 407 w/ ENG 507-001 INTERM WKSP CTV WRIT: Fourth Genre: The Art of Nonfiction     

Erik A Reece  

The term "creative nonfiction" asks us to begin thinking of the essay as a story that uses many narrative devices of fiction-writing to not only tell the truth, but to shape the truth. A successful piece of creative nonfiction should make the world appear a more intense and interesting place than its reader previously imagined. It shows the writer intimately engaging the world, and it shows us a compelling view of the world through that writer's lens. Simply put, the goal of this course is to that make art out of experience. ENG 407 builds on many of the elements of nonfiction writing that students encountered in ENG 207: establishing voice, creating a sense of scene, rendering complex portraits of people, recreating anecdotes and dialogue. Because ENG 207 is not a prerequisite for this course, we will begin ENG 407 with these basic building blocks of creative nonfiction. Then we will push beyond the memoir and personal essay to explore other forms of creative nonfiction. 

ENG 407 INTERM WKSP CTV WRIT: The American Short Story    

John D Howell

This course will build upon what you learned and the work you did in ENG 207, the beginning workshop. In our small class we'll read and discuss some fine published fiction to help you expand and deepen your understanding of the craft and art of writing fiction, and early in the semester you'll be doing short pieces of writing in response to various focused prompts. But your main work for the semester will be writing two short stories that will be submitted for workshopping, when everyone will be expected to comment conscientiously and in significant, helpful detail on the work that's shared. Most of the semester will be devoted to workshopping. Requirements: Reading assignments, misc. short exercises, two short stories, one short story revision.

ENG 407 w/ ENG 507-002 INTERM WKSP CTV WRIT: Writing Sequential Poems from Research

Frank X Walker         

Continued studies in the writer's craft, focusing on student work but with increased emphasis on outside reading. Prerequisite ENG 207 in the same genre or consent of instructor. May be repeated to a maximum of 9 credits. Provides ENG Major Elective credit and ENG minor credit. Can count only once for ENG Major 400-level course requirement. Required for ENG Creative Writing Option.

ENG 425 ENVIRONMENTAL WRITING          

Randall Roorda          

In this class, we’ll both survey and compose works of environmental writing. As our course reader shows, environmental writing is not a genre as such but an assortment of text-types orbiting about concern for the natural world and our relations thereto. This realm of discourse has a history and comprises a lineage: one purpose of this course is to trace and sample this living past. Another is to survey modes of writing that cluster about this heading. These mostly fall under the imprimatur of nonfiction (“creative” or “literary” or otherwise) but vary from personal to public, factual to impressionistic, head-space to travel-based, city to sticks and so forth, as we’ll see. A further, major purpose is to go and do likewise, make the turn from consumer to producer, convert experience to expression: make environmental writing of our own. So through the first part of the course we’ll venture brief, tentative efforts in the veins of writing we sample (what I call Trial Runs), while in the second part we’ll shift shapes and become mainly a writing workshop (though we’ll also keep reading till the end). Finally, since this writing presumes environments, we’ll seek out field experience, both together and individually: a last, best purpose.

ENG 440G STUDIES IN BRITISH LIT: Gender, Sex, and Power in Early Modern Literature

Emily E Shortslef      

In this course we will read works by Shakespeare, John Webster, Elizabeth Cary, and other sixteenth- and seventeenth-century writers who explore sexual themes (e.g. erotic desire, sexual violence, sexual "deviancy," seduction, consent, marriage, the relationship between sex and art) through the prism of power relations, gender norms, and intersectional identity. We will take a historical approach to this material, aimed at understanding early modern configurations of power and constructions of gender, sex, and race, but we will also draw on contemporary feminist and queer theory to discuss their continued significance.  

ENG 450G Studies in American Literature: War Literature

Pearl James

This senior-level seminar will focus on war literature of the 20th and 21st centuries.  Some of the questions we will consider: What makes a war-story “true”?  Why are war stories hard to tell, and to read?  Can war be funny?  War is fought for abstract ideals such as the nation and patriotism, but those ideals are often elusive for soldiers whose lives are both scary and, at times, boring.  How then do soldiers find meaning in their experiences?  Do men and women experience and write about war differently, and if so, why?  Some texts will include: The Things They Carried, The Backwash of War, A Farewell to Arms, Catch-22, Billy Lynn’s Long Half-Time Walk, and more.  Students will write two short papers and a longer research paper in addition to shorter assignments along the way. 

ENG 495 HONORS SEMINAR: Victorian Fictions        

Michael Trask

A study of the major Victorian novelists (Dickens, Trollope, Eliot) and some of their contemporaries (Collins, Braddon).  This class will pay close attention to a handful of the greatest novels in English, exploring both the world that gave rise to this compelling narrative form and its lasting impact down to the present.  We’ll seek to understand fiction as simultaneously expressing and shaping 19th-century class and gender expectations; as a mirror for Britain at the apex of its imperial power (and so the standard bearer of “civilization”); and, last but not least, as a highly stylized yet somehow perversely convincing illusion of real or “everyday” life.  Novels will include three doorstoppers (Dickens’s Our Mutual Friend, Trollope’s The Way We Live Now, Eliot’s Adam Bede) and a couple of less weighty volumes that nonetheless pack a lot of fun into their pages (Collins’s The Woman in White, Braddon’s Lady Audley’s Secret).  Written assignments will include two short papers and a final project.

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