English Courses

Professor: Stephanie Newell
TTh 11.35pm-12.50pm

An introduction to creative writing published in South Africa from the end of Apartheid in 1994 to the present. Close readings of contemporary fiction with additional material drawn from popular culture, including films, magazines, and music. Enrollment limited to first-year students.

Preregistration required; see under First-Year Seminar Program.

Also AFAM 016, AFST 015

Freshman Seminars
WR, Hu
Term: Fall
Professor: Anastasia Eccles
MW 1:00pm-2:15pm

Exploration of suspense as a significant narrative mode and a historically conditioned feeling. Readings trace an arc from the rise of suspense in sentimental and Gothic fiction in the eighteenth century, through its preeminence in the nineteenth-century novel, to its consolidation as a marketable genre in the twentieth century. With brief supplemental readings in the philosophy of aesthetics and narrative theory.Enrollment limited to first-year students.

Preregistration required; see under First-Year Seminar Program.

Freshman Seminars
WR, Hu
Term: Fall
MW 11:35am-12:50pm

Exploration of literary texts from South Asia, 1857 to the present. Close reading of literary texts from India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, and Sri Lanka, alongside political speeches, autobiographies, and oral narratives. Topics include colonialism, history writing, migration, language, caste, gender and desire, translation, politics and the novel. Enrollment limited to first-year students.

Preregistration required; see under First-Year Seminar Program.

Also LITR 023, SAST 059

Freshman Seminars
WR, Hu
Term: Fall
Professor: Heather Klemann
TTh 11:35am-12:50pm

Is childhood a quantifiable period of biological development or media ploy to fuel adult spending habits? Is it a traumatic phase that must be suppressed or an idealized and thus unrealizable fiction? What does it mean to have or not have a childhood? And how do we know when it has ended? Keeping our own experiences of childhood in mind, in this writing course we investigate the concept through material culture, or rather, the stuffof childhood. Focusing our explorations on the holdings at the Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library, we’ll encounter a variety of disciplines including performance studies, media studies, African American studies, gender studies, and food studies. Drawing evidence from the archives, we’ll develop our own arguments about how we understand this enchanting, elusive, and essential stage of life. We’ll also consider how and why curators select books, toys, and teaching tools for children for preservation in an archive. What status does this confer on the object or its prior owner(s)? Why do universities have rare book and manuscript libraries?

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Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
WR
Term: Fall
MW 2:30pm-3:45pm

“Rebellion,” writes Albert Camus, is “more than pursuit of a claim.” When someone rebels, he “demonstrates with obstinacy, that there is something in him which is worth-while” and that implicit in the act of rebellion is a “spontaneous loyalty to certain aspects of himself.” In these times of intensifying political activism, we might think of rebellion and dissent as the struggle against oppression, the fight for social justice, or the defense of some ideal. But as Camus suggests, people’s individual and collective identities are also deeply implicated in the causes they take up. How do discourses of resistance legitimate marginalized identities? In this course, we will seek to understand the ideologies that motivate dissent and how these discourses subvert social, political, and religious orthodoxies. How do embodied contradictions of cultural norms complicate our ideas about race, class, gender, and sexuality? Is rebellion always empowering? Drawing from a range of perspectives in disciplines that include psychology, anthropology, sociology, theology, philosophy, critical theory, and performance studies, we will consider how resistant thinking and practice shape identity and culture. These various perspectives will inform our discussions on topics such as colonialism, civil rights, and contemporary movements like Zionism and Black Lives Matter.

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Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
WR
Term: Fall
Professor: Rasheed Tazudeen
MW 11:35am-12:50pm

What do we mean when we call something “grotesque”? What makes works of literature, music, art, and cinema grotesque rather than beautiful, and what are the social and political functions of grotesque works? The grotesque, as this course will explore, comes to stand in for all that does not fit into our existing philosophical and aesthetic categories: monsters, human-animal or human-plant hybrids, miniature or gigantic bodily forms, inappropriate intimacies between beings, disembodied voices, dissonant sounds or modes of composition, or any other phenomena that estrange us from our familiar world. The grotesque is also closely linked to carnivalesque laughter, in which social hierarchies are mocked and overturned, as in Francois Rabelais’ comic masterpiece Gargantua and Pantagruel (1532-1564). This course will explore the meanings and the social, political, and aesthetic implications and consequences of the grotesque. We will pay close attention to how grotesque works can challenge dominant values, assumptions, and modes of thought and supply new ones in their place.

We will begin by exploring theoretical readings, from Sigmund Freud to Geoffrey Harpham, that attempt to define the ever-slippery term “grotesque.” We will then analyze narratives from Rabelais, Mary Shelley, and Edgar Allen Poe that employ grotesque principles and strategies to defamiliarize our world. From here, we will turn to modern grotesque (literary and musical) works, from Franz Kafka, Béla Bartók, and Igor Stravinsky, that extend these defamiliarizing strategies into new realms in the twentieth century. We will end the semester by looking at the use of the grotesque in classic and contemporary science fiction, from H.P. Lovecraft to Octavia Butler, closing with Boots Riley’s recent multi-genre, satirical (and carnivalesque) film, Sorry to Bother You (2018). Throughout the course, we will explore how the grotesque can transfigure our reality, composing new values and a new world through its destruction of older forms, principles, and systems of belief.

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Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
WR
Term: Fall
Professor: Jami Carlacio
MW 1:00pm-2:15pm

Every day, at every hour, we are bombarded by hundreds of news items via traditional broadcast and print outlets, social media sites, blogs, wikis, podcasts, and more. Confronted with so much information, we must decide what news to consume and which source(s) to trust. The stakes are high: what is available to us and on what platforms affect our choices to take (or not take) action, engage in civil protest, vote in key elections, conserve resources, and more. The rapid and radical changes we witness in our news and information environment make public and private decisions even more difficult, particularly in a global context. In a democratic society, the media are expected to create an informed citizenry able to debate issues in the public sphere. But are they doing their job? How might the news manufacture our consent—that is, to what extent do media shape our opinions rather than create the conditions for democracy?

The central questions of this course include: What role do the media play in US democracy? How has news production and consumption changed, with the rise of citizen journalists? Because most of our news now comes to us in digital form, we must ask ourselves, how do digital forms of news production and consumption affect American democracy?

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Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
WR
Term: Fall
Professor: Alison Coleman
MW 1:00pm-2:15pm

What is family? Who can or cannot constitute a family? How do external forces—ranging from war to social media to the economy—affect families around the globe today? And why have so many writers throughout the ages, whether comedian or critic, philosopher or politician, been inspired to take up the topic? In this writing seminar, we will examine the institution and the concept of family through a range of scholarly lenses including history, law, literature, psychology, and sociology. Taking our cue from the signs and symbols of family that proliferate in the world around us, a selection of academic texts on the subject, and our own experiences as well as the lives of those around us, we will deconstruct the term “family” in an effort to analyze its many facets and implications. Through our writings and in our class discussions, we will ask: How do I define family—and how does family define me?

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Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
WR
Term: Fall
Professor: David M. deLeon
MW 2:30pm-3:45pm

“In play there is something ‘at play’ which transcends the immediate needs of life and imparts meaning to the action. All play means something.”                 –Johan Huizinga

“The fully orchestrated blues statement… [is] a strategy for acknowledging the fact that life is a lowdown dirty shame and for improvising or riffing on the exigencies of the predicament.” –Albert Murray

What is play? When is it serious? The meaning of the word is multiform: playing a game, playing around, playing to win, playing with fire. Play is an aspect of cognition, a way for the mind to explore the world within constraints. But the playfulness of this can hide the real stakes behind it. Jazz theorist Albert Murray wrote that play “not only conditions people to cope with disjuncture and change but also provides them with a basic survival technique.”

In this class we explore this sort of serious play, where playing, games, and improvisational performance help to do things like frame identity, overcome trauma, or preserve cultural survival for marginalized peoples. When the recovering addict in James Baldwin’s short story “Sonny’s Blues” improvises on the piano, he’s playing more than just music — he’s playing, as Louis Armstrong said, life. In class we will consider how even genres like improv and video games participate in this sort of work in their own ways. Readings come from music (jazz, R&B, hip hop), literature, theater, performance studies, comedy writing, cognitive science, cultural studies, and gaming. We will riff and improvise and ask ourselves, are we playing around? Or are we playing for real?

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Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
WR
Term: Fall
Professor: Margaret Deli
TTh 11:35am-12:50pm

In a society as obsessed with celebrity as ours is today, what does the urge to gossip tell us about where we live and who we are—as a nation, as a community, and as people?  In this ENGL 114 course, we’ll ask ourselves why certain names, faces, and bodies are elevated above others, and how we participate in the performance of celebrity. We’ll think about gossip and scandal: not just as a means of policing human behavior, but as two different strategies for protecting the less powerful.  And we’ll consider how social media has definitively altered the conception and consumption of fame. In other words, this is a class that celebrates and scrutinizes Instagram, web apps, and all things Kardashian, which will touch on topics as diverse as anthropology, sociology, art history and media studies. Along the way, we’ll tackle the following questions: Are gossip, scandal, and celebrity fundamentally frivolous?  And how can they best be employed in contemporary society?

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Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
WR
Term: Fall
Professor: Craig Eklund
MW 9:00am-10:15am

What is the self? Paradoxically, the closest thing to us is the most obscure of all. This course explores the seminal questions of selfhood (free will, subjectivity, consciousness) and novel insights offered by neuroscience, artificial intelligence, and, yes, selfies.

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Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
WR
Term: Fall
Professor: Craig Eklund
MW 2:30pm-3:45pm

What is the self? Paradoxically, the closest thing to us is the most obscure of all. This course explores the seminal questions of selfhood (free will, subjectivity, consciousness) and novel insights offered by neuroscience, artificial intelligence, and, yes, selfies.

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Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
WR
Term: Fall
Professor: Greg Ellermann
TTh 4:00pm-5:15pm

This course considers time as a social and political category. Not just a natural phenomenon, time determines the value of our work, shapes our habits, and even constrains our desires. Drawing on perspectives from philosophy, political economy, black studies, and art history, we will explore how time bears on some of our most pressing political concerns: labor and gender under capitalism; the ongoing history of slavery; the dehumanizing effects of incarceration. We will also examine how various art forms – from slapstick comedy to futuristic jazz, from history painting to conceptual art – might reflect on and remake time. Ultimately, our course asks, can we imagine new ways to live in (or outside of) the measure of time?

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Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
WR
Term: Fall
Professor: Eric Ensley
MW 4:00pm-5:15pm

This course asks you to contemplate and write about what makes a book materially, textually, and communally across a broad historical span, from medieval manuscripts and Victorian serial novels to Harry Potter and steamy romances.

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Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
WR
Term: Fall
Professor: Emily Glider
TTh 11:35am-12:50pm

Digital media has been credited with “shrinking,” “flattening,” and “connecting” the globe, mediating new relations amongst far flung places and people for purposes of commerce, cultural engagement, political advocacy, and day-to-day social interaction. The impact of internet technology upon the shape of our world, however, has been widely debated in the academic literature. Have digital communications served to bridge global inequalities or to exacerbate them? To facilitate new modes of cosmopolitan social awareness or to stoke international tensions? To decentralize global political discourse or to consolidate new centers of power? This course will consider some key scholarly texts evaluating the influence of new digital publication practices and technologies upon intercultural dialogue in a world-wide context. We will discuss a range of different multidisciplinary works by political scientists, economists, sociologists, and cultural theorists from throughout the world that address the way that the shifting communications infrastructure of the digital age has generated new ways of relating to an expanding global imaginative geography.

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Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
WR
Term: Fall
Professor: Anna Hill
MW 2:30pm-3:45pm

How does nostalgia shape the present? Can one feel nostalgic for the future, or for a past that never existed? When can nostalgia become dangerous? This course explores the vexed histories and ongoing role of nostalgia in contemporary American culture.

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Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
WR
Term: Fall
Professor: Samuel Huber
TTh 2:30pm-3:45pm

Feminist and transgender interrogations of the man/woman binary long predate today’s anxieties about bathrooms, hormones, and government IDs. Taking our title question seriously, this course will consider the role of binary gender categories in struggles for gender justice.

Also WGSS 114

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Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
WR
Term: Fall
Professor: Suzanne Young
MW 11:35am-12:50pm

Do we discover the world or create it? To what extent can we know the world directly, given that our access is mediated by the mind? In this class, we will consider perception from different angles, working with texts such as Berger’s Ways of Seeing and the film The Matrix. What is the difference between illusion and reality? How does the power of the mind make our worlds and what implications does that have for human agency? At the heart of the course is a deep dive into the world of AI and animal minds: New developments in artificial intelligence and discoveries about animal minds are making us rethink our status as the only conscious beings on the planet. We finish by exploring the outer limits of our knowledge about selfhood, exploring things like phantom limb syndrome, synaesthesia, the significance of sleep, and the question of the soul. In this class, we will be facing the great challenge of neuroscience–using the mind to study itself.

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Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
WR
Term: Fall
Professor: Seo Hee Im
MW 1:00pm-2:15pm

What does it mean to decipher a meal or write a psychosociology of contemporary food consumption? How do power disparities in race, gender, nationality, and class shape our culinary preferences (and our discourses about such preferences)? Is future cuisine more paleo than molecular? We will begin with the French, with Roland Barthes’s injunction that we consider food as an abstract “system of communication, a body of images, a protocol of usages, systems and behaviors.” We will attend to the ethical dilemmas we face as responsible omnivores, especially in light of climate change and documented practices of cruelty in American factory farms. And we will explore how cannibalism—the complete assimilation of other human flesh—has indexed inassimilable alterity in sites as diverse as Renaissance religious conflicts, early colonial ventures, war propaganda, East Asian nationalisms, and mass cultural representations of communism and late capitalism.

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Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
WR
Term: Fall
Professor: Arthur Wang
TTh 2:30pm-3:45pm

Why is physical pain so difficult to communicate? What kinds of pain—and which bodies in pain—tend to receive priority over others? Given the challenges of perceiving the suffering of other beings, how can we hold ourselves responsible for the pain we inflict, witness, and experience? This course will investigate philosophical, political, aesthetic, and bioethical strategies for expressing and responding to physical pain. We will begin with theoretical readings on the challenges that the experience of pain poses for linguistic, visual, and auditory communication. Pain is universal but not uniform, and we will consider how race, gender, and species shape the political recognition of pain. Turning to contemporary medical ethics and public health, we will explore dilemmas of pain management, and their applications to chronic pain, disease, euthanasia, and end-of-life care.

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Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
WR
Term: Fall
Professor: Jakub Koguciuk
TTh 1:00pm-2:15pm

Landscape and the Environment

To what extent is our vision of landscape reflective of our knowledge of nature? How does landscape communicate human interventions in the environment? The environment is as a controversial subject, one which resists a common vocabulary across branches of knowledge and the political spectrum. On the other hand, landscape is a simpler concept, seemingly avoiding controversy. It embraces the aesthetic dimension of our habitat, and turns the environment into a domain of culture. How do these notions relate to each other? We will study human interactions with the environment from the point of view of various disciplines: from anthropological and scientific writing to literary evocations and legal controversies. In addition, we will focus on current debates related to our natural habitat, like ethical issues of animal liberation as well as climate change. As a counterpart to a wide range of classic nature writing and theory, we will look at artistic representations on landscape, during visits at the Yale University Art Gallery and the Yale Center for British Art. The course culminates in an assignment giving you a chance to explore your own habitat in piece of creative non-fiction nature writing.

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Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
WR
Term: Fall
Professor: Timothy Kreiner
TTh 11:35am-12:50pm

According to the World Bank, an increase in global temperatures of more than 2°C by the year 2100 will likely submerge coastal cities from New York to Shanghai beneath rising seas. Yet as many theorists note, the global supply chains the World Bank helps facilitate also fuel global warming. How do we make sense of economic institutions warning us of disasters their actions may hasten? Why is there so much disagreement among scholars concerning the quickening pace of climate change alongside the emergence of supposedly post-industrial economies in the developed world? And what can we do about that pace today? This class surveys two sweeping transformations of social life in recent decades to pose such questions. Climate change, we will wager, can’t be understood apart from the logistics revolution that made globalization possible: The massive freeway systems, ports, algorithms, microprocessors, and container ships transporting goods and money from one corner of the globe to another. Along the way we will pay particular attention to the uneven racial and gender dynamics governing who lives where and acquires what they need to survive how in a world arranged by the logistics revolution driving climate change today.

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Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
WR
Term: Fall
Professor: Stephen Krewson
TTh 9:00am-10:15am

“The dopamine API is a tool that allows any app to become addictive…People don’t just love that burst of dopamine they get from a notification, it changes the wiring of the brain.”

—Ramsay Brown, co-founder of Dopamine Labs

If your favorite apps are heavily invested in the plasticity of your brain, are you still in control of your life? This course starts from the premise that older ways of talking about the will, attention, ethics, and social life are being superseded by a hybrid discourse of brain science and holism. In a historical moment in which we feel our reward circuitry being influenced day and night, voices that incorporate the findings of neuroscience into simple, urgent narratives can expect to have great appeal. Jordan Peterson’s stump speech on lobsters and serotonin offers his fans tough love in a hierarchical, violent world. Bruce Alexander’s Rat Park experiment has become a powerful fable of how humans might be liberated from a cage of “globalized addiction.” Both Right and Left thinkers produce symbols of and solutions to the mental (and physical!) health problems that stem from a wired but socially dysfunctional world. While we will grapple with biological lingo in this class, our subject is how and why dopamine, serotonin, oxytocin, cortisol, endorphins and the rest are recruited into larger stories about how to live a successful, “whole” life. Helping us along the way will be an ensemble of anthropologists, philosophers, cognitive scientists, and journalists who excel at writing for both academic and broader audiences. The final project will involve each student selecting a community of interest–whether in-person or virtual–to document and analyze in writing. How does this group use the language of neurotransmitters to tell itself a story about overcoming distractions, adversity, and imbalanced brains?

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Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
WR
Term: Fall
MW 4:00pm-5:15pm

What is the purpose of college? How should you spend your time while you are here? What roles do institutions of higher education play in our society and what kind of society are they helping to build? Are they succeeding or failing, and for whom? This course considers the variety of purposes with which individuals and institutions might approach the project of higher education: for individual self-cultivation, professional development and credentialing, and training in practices of citizenship, to name a few. Our readings draw from the works of Leo Strauss, Allen Bloom, Henry Giroux, Danielle Allen, bell hooks, Paulo Freire, Tressie McMillan Cottom, and C. Wright Mills.  This course asks you to think critically and imaginatively about the meaning of your own time spent in this institution and then to contextualize your experience – to understand the diverse roles that institutions of higher education have played in American society, their various purposes, functions, and points of access.

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Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
WR
Term: Fall
Professor: Isabel Lane
TTh 2:30pm-3:45pm

From textile production to ICBMs, how does technology shape our world and our lives? More importantly, is it a good thing? This seminar asks what technologies are, how we interact with them, and if it’s O.K. to rebel against them.

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Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
WR
Term: Fall
MW 11:35pm-12:50pm

The ancient Romans had what they called an “art of memory,” consisting above all in the “method of places”: its practitioners would move mentally through a real or imagined house or palace, placing mnemonic images at regular intervals. In this way they built up an “artificial memory” with whose help they were said to accomplish astonishing feats. Taking this ancient idea as our guiding thread, we will explore what the concept of memory has meant in historical contexts ranging from antiquity to the present day and how it is used in disciplines ranging from neuropsychology to law. Moving forward in time, we will read a set of authors (Freud, Bergson, and others) who based their theories of mind on unnatural aberrations from the normal functioning of memory (repression, amnesia, déjà vu). In our third unit, we will examine a series of papers (Lashley, Hebb, Baddeley, Turing) to see how, in the interwar and postwar periods, the fields of neuropsychology and computer science coalesced around artificial models of the natural memory. In our fourth unit, we will consider the uses and abuses of memory. We will follow St. Augustine as he searches for his God “in the fields and spacious halls of memory” and watch medieval monks as they put the tools of the old art of memory to the new use of keeping the cardinal virtues in mind. And, looking back over the ground we have covered, we will see what new uses we can find for the ancient artifice.

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Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
WR
Term: Fall
Professor: Scarlet Luk
TTh 9:00am-10:15am

How deep is the relationship between the food we eat and the people that we become? The adage that you “are” what you eat is repeated ad nauseum in wellbeing campaigns and parental admonition, but how literally can we take it as an expression of our personhood? This course will introduce you to thinking critically about food and will grapple with complex questions about how, where, why, and who we eat – and what they say about our lot in the world. Why do food taboos exist, and what, if any, differences exist when they are inscribed in doctrine or subconsciously honored in our food rituals and practices? Does your favorite blueberry pancake mixture not only contain no real blueberries but also a legacy of racism? Are your brunch strawberries responsible for getting someone deported? What might constitute the queer pleasures of eating and cooking? And what happens when we realize that we, too, can and will be food for others?

Throughout our semester, we will attempt to understand what certain foods and their constellation of attendant practices and attitudes say about who we are. We will pay particular attention to the ways in which both food and writing on food produce intersectional histories, complicit with and resisting colonial violence, globalization, class struggle, anthropocentrism and gender inequality among others. And by appreciating and critiquing the writing of our authors – who invest their writing with panache as delectable as the foods we love – we will also become more conscientious consumers and producers of writing.

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Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
WR
Term: Fall
TTh 2:30pm-3:45pm

What do Gwyneth Paltrow, faith healers, and the inventor of graham crackers have in common? All of them have promoted their own approaches to health and wellness through anti-establishment methods. And, at one time or another, all have been accused of supporting pseudoscience. But some people swear by fad diets and aromatherapy the way that some believe in the power of prayer–and they say that science is on their side. This course will examine the ways in which modern health and wellness movements have adopted the languages of both science and religion, and ask where we draw lines between medicine and personal beliefs about spirituality and morality. Can yoga classes and clean eating make you a better person? Is it ethical for parents to refuse vaccinating their children on religious grounds? Is it a moral imperative for mothers to breast-feed their babies? Throughout the semester, students will grapple with these and other questions as we investigate the connections between our ideas about health, ethics, spirituality, and organized religion. Course readings will draw from a variety of genres, including essays, journal articles, memoirs, interviews, and documentary film.”

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Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
WR
Term: Fall
Professor: Yahel Matalon
TTh 1:00pm-2:15pm

We all know that true objectivity and completely transparent reporting are important but impossible ideals. Still, most of us check our regular news sources every day to learn the facts about what is going on around us. But are we really only invested in the facts, or are we also drawn in by the social and cultural narratives that circulate with our news? The stories we tell ourselves on our front pages offer us more than concrete knowledge of current affairs: they engage us in a variety of anxieties and fantasies through the promise of community, social action, and even entertainment.

In this class, we will explore sensationalism in the news and why certain stories have been so captivating as to implicate journalists as well as audiences in moments of media frenzy, in which the headlines seem to eclipse the actual people involved. Alongside texts like Susan Sontag’s “Regarding the Pain of Others” and Roland Barthes’ “Myth Today,” we will examine a range of case studies, from the rise of mass-circulation newspapers in the nineteenth century to the true crime documentaries and podcasts of the present day. These case studies will include print scandals like the Borden axe murders and the real murderesses who inspired the musical Chicago; the first photograph of an execution by electric chair in the 1920s and the last woman to be hanged for murder in the UK in the 1950s; the media-haunted life and death of Princess Diana and its effects on the way the current royal family presents itself; the OJ Simpson trial and its national importance as a news event; and the effect of popular productions like Serial and Making a Murderer on ongoing, unsolved cases.

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Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
WR
Term: Fall
MW 1:00pm-2:15pm

Is democracy in the United States uniquely strong or durable? Is the American political system somehow immune to revolution? Why do class consciousness and class antagonism in the United States seem underdeveloped in relation to Europe? How has America’s imperial history (slavery, Native American genocide, settler colonialism) shaped American democracy and its limits? This course examines some of the central questions surrounding the discourse of American exceptionalism. We consider especially how the apparent contradiction between democracy and empire has been figured in American cultural and intellectual history through readings in the disciplines of political science, history, American studies, sociology, economics, and literary studies. Through our exploration of long-standing debates about American race and class politics, we will hope to shed light on contemporary issues such as spiraling income inequality, mass incarceration and police violence, American military intervention since 9/11, Trumpism and the rise of the far right, and the resurgence of socialist politics in the US.

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Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
WR
Term: Fall
Professor: Margaret McGowan
TTh 1:00pm-2:15pm

Sometimes visiting an art museum or reading a novel thrills us. Sometimes it bores us. This course explores contemporary art movements from the 1960’s to the present—including conceptual art, minimalism, and pop art—that seem designed to bore us.

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Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
WR
Term: Fall
Professor: Pamela Newton
TTh 1:00pm-2:15pm

What lies behind our desire to travel? Do we leave home in search of the foreign and exotic, a glimpse of beauty, a broader knowledge of others, or a deeper knowledge of ourselves? Is a tourist a type of person, a person in a certain set of circumstances, or a person with a certain state of mind?  Is there a difference between a traveler and a tourist? What do we gain from becoming travelers and/or tourists? What do we lose? In this course, we will investigate these and other questions through our study of texts about travel and tourism in a variety of disciplines, including sociology, philosophy, history, and literary theory, as well as through cultural artifacts, such as newspaper articles, photographs, and film and television clips. Our final unit will focus on non-fiction travel writing. Keeping our own travel and tourism experiences in mind throughout, we will engage with these materials in order to explore the effects of tourism (on both the visitor and the visited) and the changing figure of the tourist, including the way current technologies are shaping our travel experiences. We will also investigate a number of constructs within the study of tourism, such as exoticism, consumerism, personal discovery, and the quest for authenticity.

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Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
WR
Term: Fall
Professor: Barbara Riley
MW 11:35am-12:50pm

What do we mean by “the truth” in America today? Is objectivity possible? and, if so, is impartial observation always desirable? How independent is “independent thought?” In what has been called a “post-truth world,” questions of objectivity, fact, bias, values and even purpose have resurrected what, in an earlier period in American history, was termed the “credibility gap” and, in fact, has engaged philosophers, theorists and intellectuals for the last two thousand years. Drawing on political philosophy, journalism, psychology, history, ethics and documentary film, this course challenges assumptions about objectivity, examines and refines ideas and practices in non-fiction writing for a scholarly audience, and asks essential questions for scholars and citizens in any era. What conditions lead to a discerning, unbiased assessment of the information on which we base our thinking?  As students and citizens, how do we determine what sources of information or opinion are trustworthy?  How, as thinkers and writers, do we become trustworthy?

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Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
WR
Term: Fall
Professor: Timothy Robinson
TTh 4:00pm-5:15pm

What right does any authority have to control expression?  This writing seminar will treat legal and critical debates from recent times, as well as various arguments concerning politics, artistic freedom, and religion, ranging from those of Plato to Tipper Gore.

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Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
WR
Term: Fall
Professor: Barbara Stuart
TTh 11:35am-12:50pm

Every time we sit down for a meal, we might very well question the strength and security of our food system. Why doesn’t everyone in the United States have access to nutritious, affordable food? If food in our nation is cheap and plentiful, why are so many Americans food insecure? And why is it that those who are food insecure suffer from obesity and diabetes? Is our food system just broken?

This section will examine the Farm Bill, or what Michael Pollan calls the “Food Bill,” that omnibus legislation that largely controls what ends up on our plates every day. Students will discuss which food fixes are palatable, environmentally, economically, and politically. A Food Film Fest featuring films like Food Inc., King Corn, A Place at the Table, Fed Up, and Food Chains will supplement assigned readings. At the end of the semester, students will test their theories by visiting grocery stores, a farmers’ market, and by completing research to develop a solution to a real food problem in our country.

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Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
WR
Term: Fall
Professor: Rasheed Tazudeen
MW 2:30pm-3:45pm

How are identities shaped by the sounds and noises we hear? How does sound, and music, influence the construction of our world? This course will investigate the cultural and political role of sound and music from Monteverdi’s L’Orfeo to Kendrick Lamar’s DAMN.

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Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
WR
Term: Fall
Professor: Ryan Wepler
MW 11:35am-12:50pm

Can reading good literature make you a good person? Does encountering art that challenges your certainties, broadens your experience, and probes the limits of existence make you more sensitive to your own personhood and the humanity of others? In this course we will consider what makes literature good and how good literature moves us. Our collective goal will not just be to produce a theory of good literature, but to experience its goodness, to develop your capacity to be moved by a literary work and reflect on what happened to you during that process. Readings range from popular successes to great masterpieces and include: Mrs. Dalloway (Woolf), Absalom, Absalom! (Faulkner); short fiction and excerpts by Sir. Arthur Conan Doyle, Mark Twain, Flannery O’Connor, O Henry, Jorge Luis Borges, Kurt Vonnegut, Karen Russell, George Saunders, and E. L. James; selected poetry; and one of the Harry Potter films.

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Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
WR, Hu
Term: Fall
Professor: Andrew Brown
TTh 1:00pm-2:15pm

We tend to imagine nostalgia or homesickness as a temporary, harmless experience—the bittersweet feeling of missing a favorite meal, a childhood TV series, or the streets where we grew up. But many authors have argued that clinging to the past can be dangerous. One nineteenth-century writer even claimed that nostalgia could literally kill, describing it as a ghoulish creature that “fastens upon the breast of its prey, and sucks, vampyre-like, the breath of his nostrils.” This course asks: how have literary works explored both the comforts and the psychological and political hazards of yearning for distant places, people, things, and times? How do they negotiate the tensions between what novelist Carson McCullers calls “a nostalgia for the familiar and an urge for the foreign and strange?” How is a longing to return to “the good old days” linked with questions of race, gender, and sexuality? And how might recent trends in migration and globalization inform future representations of homesickness? The class will consider literary works alongside philosophical, historical, and critical reflections on the concept of nostalgia. Our readings will include selections from The Odyssey; William Shakespeare’s Pericles; poems by Phillis Wheatley, William Blake, and Samuel Taylor Coleridge; novels, essays, and stories of the American Civil War and its long aftermath; and contemporary engagements with nostalgia on a global scale by Viet Thanh Nguyen (The Refugees), Saidiya Hartman (Lose Your Mother), and Caridad De La Luz (“Nuyorico”).

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Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
WR, Hu
Term: Fall
Professor: Ann Killian
MW 2:30pm-3:45pm

Each of us will live through the death of someone we love. Facing such a loss compels us not only to confront our own mortality, but also to rebuild a life around the absence of the person who has died. Although such experiences are universal – even commonplace – the intimacy and particularity of loss renders it nigh inexpressible. And yet, in literature from the ancient Middle East to present day America, writers have attempted to reckon with sudden death, analyze grief’s bewildering effects, remember lost time, and bear witness to tragedy and injustice. They stretch language to its limits to explore how humans assimilate the horror of death and find the will to keep living.

Through works of various genres, we will encounter the ravages of disease, political treason, and governmentally sanctioned murder. But these stories also tell of love, desire, and survival – even return to life. Taking up their invitation to experience bereavement vicariously, we will ask: Does writing about dying brace us for our own end? Can literature help us “work through” loss and continue on with life? In cases of political injustice, can reading about a tragic death motivate us to take political action? How do we mourn as a nation in an age of social media and celebrity?

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Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
WR, Hu
Term: Fall
Professor: Timothy Kreiner
TTh 4:00pm-5:15pm

Few social issues are more pivotal today than those that animate the Black Lives Matter movement. Those issues have a long history, however, in art as well as politics. Indeed, the historical devaluation of black life casts a long shadow over the formation of American literature. From the era of slavery to what many theorists view as the racialized expansion of the US prison system in recent decades, black life has been a major if often marginalized force shaping literary history. At the same time, literature has often been a proving ground for competing forms of antiracist politics. This course explores that force and those forms through a broad overview spanning from Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass to recent writings by Toni Morrison, Fred Moten, and Claudia Rankine. Along the way we will also take up work by writers such as Phillis Wheatley, Paul Laurence Dunbar, James Weldon Johnson, Langston Hughes, Claude McKay, Zora Neale Hurston, and Amiri Baraka.

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Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
WR, Hu
Term: Fall
Professor: Katja Lindskog
MW 9:00am-10:15am

Game of Thrones tells us that winter is coming – but why is it coming? What causes an entire world’s climate to change? In this seminar, we will read literary texts that provide thought-provoking answers to that question. Moving across a variety of genres, we will see student protesters, coal miners, and post-apocalyptic scavengers work with, and struggle against, their environments in ways that reflect changing attitudes to how we should relate to nature. From Ursula Le Guin and Charles Dickens to recent bestsellers and disaster movies, fiction helps us see that structured labor – the way we organize different forms of work – plays a huge part in shaping our environment.
 
It often seems as if our jobs and prosperity are separate from that of our planet. But what happens to our work when the planet can no longer support us? Do we change how we make our living, in order to save ourselves? With the sinking cities and burning plains of yesterday’s science fiction becoming tomorrow’s reality, can literature help us figure out where to go from here? In class we will ask these questions – and many more – while moving through literary, cinematic, theoretical, and historical texts. We will disagree, agree, persuade, and generally wander in and around these materials to better understand how they are put together. These conversations will provide a model for what literary arguments can look like. We’ll see how fiction bears witness to the ecological emergency produced by our systems of labor – but the works we read will also offer hope; for survival, and for a more just and resilient future.
 
Though the object of our investigation is literature, this is a writing course above all. We will work together on strategies for pre-writing, drafting, revising, and editing. We will also discuss methods of source interpretation, research, and documentation. We will refine the skills inherent in critical writing through a process of radical revision, in which you will learn to read your own and your classmates’ writing with a critical eye, transforming it into a sophisticated, refined, and persuasive final product.

Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
WR, Hu
Term: Fall
Professor: Alexandra Reider
TTh 11:35am-12:50pm

Can reading literature make us better, more successful people? How might it? Should it? This course looks at literature that encourages its characters (and its readers) to draw lessons from its pages — as well as literature that, conversely, seems ambivalent about or even discourages that same process. We will think extensively about the rhetorical strategies — such as understatement, humor, and sentiment — that these texts deploy to deliver (or obscure) a message; we will also constantly be questioning who the intended audience, and what the intended message, really is. This is a course about how our approach to reading a work of literature determines the effect it has on us, the readers, and what the stakes are of a work failing to “deliver.” In so doing, we will participate in a larger conversation about what the “point” of literature is and what different “kinds” of reading there are. Readings include Samuel Beckett’s Waiting for Godot; Leslie Jamison’s The Empathy Exams; Zadie Smith’s On Beauty; and the Old Norse poem Hávamál and the Old English epic Beowulf. We will also watch the films Clueless (dir. Amy Heckerling) and Funny Games (dir. Michael Haneke).

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Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
Term: Fall
TTh 2:30pm-3:45pm

If life is indeed a journey, how does one master the art of travel? Poets and writers throughout history have offered us many a model: the hero’s adventure, the prodigal son’s return, the woman confined in the house, the migrant looking for a new home. In this course, we will read about actual and imaginary journeys in literature from Homer’s Odyssey to recent science fiction. As we consider different types of travel – voyages of conquest, leisure tours, road trips, exile, time travel, intergalactic exploration – we will debate a range of questions: How does place influence our sense of identity, and how does traveling disrupt and reshape it? What happens in encounters with worlds and peoples we do not know? What role does global imperialism play in this experience of travel, displacement, and cross-cultural contact? Can we imagine a journey that is truly open-ended? Texts and screenings include: Shakespeare’s Tempest, Joseph Conrad’s Heart of Darkness, Soloman Nothup’s Twelve Years a Slave, Nella Larsen’s Quicksand, E.M. Forster’s Passage to India, Ursula Le Guin’s Left Hand of Darkness, and Ridley Scott’s film Thelma and Louise.

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Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
WR, Hu
Term: Fall
Professor: Kim Shirkhani
TTh 11:35am-12:50pm

Close reading of great nonfiction prepares students to develop mastery of the craft of powerful writing in the humanities and in all fields of human endeavor, within the university and beyond. Study of some of the finest essayists in the English language, including James Baldwin, Joan Didion, Leslie Jamison, Jhumpa Lahiri, George Orwell, David Foster Wallace, and Virginia Woolf. Assignments challenge students to craft persuasive arguments from personal experience, to portray people and places, and to interpret fundamental aspects of modern culture.

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Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
WR
Term: Fall
MW 11:35am-12:50pm

Close reading of great nonfiction prepares students to develop mastery of the craft of powerful writing in the humanities and in all fields of human endeavor, within the university and beyond. Study of some of the finest essayists in the English language, including James Baldwin, Joan Didion, Leslie Jamison, Jhumpa Lahiri, George Orwell, David Foster Wallace, and Virginia Woolf. Assignments challenge students to craft persuasive arguments from personal experience, to portray people and places, and to interpret fundamental aspects of modern culture.

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Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
WR
Term: Fall
Professor: Margaret Deli
MW 9:00am-10:15am

Close reading of great nonfiction prepares students to develop mastery of the craft of powerful writing in the humanities and in all fields of human endeavor, within the university and beyond. Study of some of the finest essayists in the English language, including James Baldwin, Joan Didion, Leslie Jamison, Jhumpa Lahiri, George Orwell, David Foster Wallace, and Virginia Woolf. Assignments challenge students to craft persuasive arguments from personal experience, to portray people and places, and to interpret fundamental aspects of modern culture.

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Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
WR
Term: Fall
Professor: Derek Green
TTh 2:30pm-3:45pm

Close reading of great nonfiction prepares students to develop mastery of the craft of powerful writing in the humanities and in all fields of human endeavor, within the university and beyond. Study of some of the finest essayists in the English language, including James Baldwin, Joan Didion, Leslie Jamison, Jhumpa Lahiri, George Orwell, David Foster Wallace, and Virginia Woolf. Assignments challenge students to craft persuasive arguments from personal experience, to portray people and places, and to interpret fundamental aspects of modern culture.

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Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
WR
Term: Fall
Professor: Susan Hartman
MW 2:30pm-3:45pm

Close reading of great nonfiction prepares students to develop mastery of the craft of powerful writing in the humanities and in all fields of human endeavor, within the university and beyond. Study of some of the finest essayists in the English language, including James Baldwin, Joan Didion, Leslie Jamison, Jhumpa Lahiri, George Orwell, David Foster Wallace, and Virginia Woolf. Assignments challenge students to craft persuasive arguments from personal experience, to portray people and places, and to interpret fundamental aspects of modern culture.

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Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
WR
Term: Fall
Professor: Rosemary Jones
MW 1:00pm-2:15pm

Close reading of great nonfiction prepares students to develop mastery of the craft of powerful writing in the humanities and in all fields of human endeavor, within the university and beyond. Study of some of the finest essayists in the English language, including James Baldwin, Joan Didion, Leslie Jamison, Jhumpa Lahiri, George Orwell, David Foster Wallace, and Virginia Woolf. Assignments challenge students to craft persuasive arguments from personal experience, to portray people and places, and to interpret fundamental aspects of modern culture.

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Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
WR
Term: Fall
Professor: Pamela Newton
TTh 2:30pm-3:45pm

Close reading of great nonfiction prepares students to develop mastery of the craft of powerful writing in the humanities and in all fields of human endeavor, within the university and beyond. Study of some of the finest essayists in the English language, including James Baldwin, Joan Didion, Leslie Jamison, Jhumpa Lahiri, George Orwell, David Foster Wallace, and Virginia Woolf. Assignments challenge students to craft persuasive arguments from personal experience, to portray people and places, and to interpret fundamental aspects of modern culture.

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Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
WR
Term: Fall
Professor: Barbara Riley
TTh 1:00pm-2:15pm

Close reading of great nonfiction prepares students to develop mastery of the craft of powerful writing in the humanities and in all fields of human endeavor, within the university and beyond. Study of some of the finest essayists in the English language, including James Baldwin, Joan Didion, Leslie Jamison, Jhumpa Lahiri, George Orwell, David Foster Wallace, and Virginia Woolf. Assignments challenge students to craft persuasive arguments from personal experience, to portray people and places, and to interpret fundamental aspects of modern culture.

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Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
WR
Term: Fall
TTh 11:35am-12:50pm

Close reading of great nonfiction prepares students to develop mastery of the craft of powerful writing in the humanities and in all fields of human endeavor, within the university and beyond. Study of some of the finest essayists in the English language, including James Baldwin, Joan Didion, Leslie Jamison, Jhumpa Lahiri, George Orwell, David Foster Wallace, and Virginia Woolf. Assignments challenge students to craft persuasive arguments from personal experience, to portray people and places, and to interpret fundamental aspects of modern culture.

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Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
WR
Term: Fall
Professor: Adam Reid Sexton
TTh 1:00pm-2:15pm

Close reading of great nonfiction prepares students to develop mastery of the craft of powerful writing in the humanities and in all fields of human endeavor, within the university and beyond. Study of some of the finest essayists in the English language, including James Baldwin, Joan Didion, Leslie Jamison, Jhumpa Lahiri, George Orwell, David Foster Wallace, and Virginia Woolf. Assignments challenge students to craft persuasive arguments from personal experience, to portray people and places, and to interpret fundamental aspects of modern culture.

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Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
WR
Term: Fall
Professor: Shifra Sharlin
MW 9:00am-10:15am

Close reading of great nonfiction prepares students to develop mastery of the craft of powerful writing in the humanities and in all fields of human endeavor, within the university and beyond. Study of some of the finest essayists in the English language, including James Baldwin, Joan Didion, Leslie Jamison, Jhumpa Lahiri, George Orwell, David Foster Wallace, and Virginia Woolf. Assignments challenge students to craft persuasive arguments from personal experience, to portray people and places, and to interpret fundamental aspects of modern culture.

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Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
WR
Term: Fall
Professor: Shifra Sharlin
MW 11:35am-12:50pm

Close reading of great nonfiction prepares students to develop mastery of the craft of powerful writing in the humanities and in all fields of human endeavor, within the university and beyond. Study of some of the finest essayists in the English language, including James Baldwin, Joan Didion, Leslie Jamison, Jhumpa Lahiri, George Orwell, David Foster Wallace, and Virginia Woolf. Assignments challenge students to craft persuasive arguments from personal experience, to portray people and places, and to interpret fundamental aspects of modern culture.

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Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
WR
Term: Fall
Professor: Barbara Stuart
TTh 4:00pm-5:15pm

Close reading of great nonfiction prepares students to develop mastery of the craft of powerful writing in the humanities and in all fields of human endeavor, within the university and beyond. Study of some of the finest essayists in the English language, including James Baldwin, Joan Didion, Leslie Jamison, Jhumpa Lahiri, George Orwell, David Foster Wallace, and Virginia Woolf. Assignments challenge students to craft persuasive arguments from personal experience, to portray people and places, and to interpret fundamental aspects of modern culture.

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Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
WR
Term: Fall
Canceled Section

Close reading of great nonfiction prepares students to develop mastery of the craft of powerful writing in the humanities and in all fields of human endeavor, within the university and beyond. Study of some of the finest essayists in the English language, including James Baldwin, Joan Didion, Leslie Jamison, Jhumpa Lahiri, George Orwell, David Foster Wallace, and Virginia Woolf. Assignments challenge students to craft persuasive arguments from personal experience, to portray people and places, and to interpret fundamental aspects of modern culture.

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Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
WR
Term: Fall
Professor: Emily Ulrich
TTh 9:00am-10:15am

Close reading of great nonfiction prepares students to develop mastery of the craft of powerful writing in the humanities and in all fields of human endeavor, within the university and beyond. Study of some of the finest essayists in the English language, including James Baldwin, Joan Didion, Leslie Jamison, Jhumpa Lahiri, George Orwell, David Foster Wallace, and Virginia Woolf. Assignments challenge students to craft persuasive arguments from personal experience, to portray people and places, and to interpret fundamental aspects of modern culture.

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Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
WR
Term: Fall
Professor: Andrew Ehrgood
MW 11:35am-12:50pm

Law has an intellectual structure of its own, and the lawyers and judges who make law and interpret it have peculiar ways of imagining and talking about the world, habits of thought and expression that can mystify the nonlawyer.  In this course, you will begin to learn to read and speak and write the lawyer’s language: you will learn to reason and argue in distinctively lawyerly ways about the sorts of problems that lawyers are paid to attend to.  And as you acquire and become adept at this odd language, you will also evaluate it, assessing its appeal and usefulness to you as a thinker, writer, and citizen.

Prerequisites: ENGL 114, 115, 120, or another writing-intensive course at Yale.

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Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
WR
Term: Fall
Professor: Kim Shirkhani
TTh 1:00pm-2:15pm

An examination of how exemplary critics, such as David Foster Wallace, Joan Didion, Eula Biss, Kelefa Sanneh, Ariel Levy, Ian Frazer, Kyoko Mori, Adam Gopnik, Henry Louis Gates, Louis Menand, Ted Conover, Amitava Kumar, Wesley Yang, Malcolm Gladwell, Roxane Gay, Eric Schlosser, and Elizabeth Kolbert, and others, use elements of style—diction, tone, narrative structure—as both a mode of investigation and a means of persuasion. Our close attention to how these writers use style as argument will help students develop crucial rhetorical skills especially in light of recent social scientific studies that have affirmed that when it comes to persuading readers on cultural issues, the emotional and experiential are at least as important as the rational or factual.

Units will be organized around readings that highlight a particular stylistic approach—critique via personal narrative, artful analyses of cultural framing (society’s narrative instinct), and more in-depth critiques that interweave personal narrative or perspective with research and analysis. Students will close read model essays for craft, research cultural objects that interest them, and craft their own cultural critiques designed to question and persuade not merely with style but by way of style.

Prerequisites: ENGL 114, 115, 120, or another writing-intensive course at Yale.

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Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
WR
Term: Fall
Professor: Danielle Chapman
TTh 11:35pm-12:50pm

Introduction to the writing of fiction, poetry, and drama. Development of the basic skills used to create imaginative literature. Fundamentals of craft and composition; the distinct but related techniques used in the three genres. Story, scene, and character in fiction; sound, line, image, and voice in poetry; monologue, dialogue, and action in drama.

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Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
Hu
Term: Fall
Professor: Richard Deming
TTh 11:35pm-12:50pm

Introduction to the writing of fiction, poetry, and drama. Development of the basic skills used to create imaginative literature. Fundamentals of craft and composition; the distinct but related techniques used in the three genres. Story, scene, and character in fiction; sound, line, image, and voice in poetry; monologue, dialogue, and action in drama.

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Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
Hu
Term: Fall
Professor: Derek Green
TTh 11.35am-12.50pm

Introduction to the writing of fiction, poetry, and drama. Development of the basic skills used to create imaginative literature. Fundamentals of craft and composition; the distinct but related techniques used in the three genres. Story, scene, and character in fiction; sound, line, image, and voice in poetry; monologue, dialogue, and action in drama.

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Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
Hu
Term: Fall
Professor: Emily Skillings
TTh 11:35am-12:50pm

Introduction to the writing of fiction, poetry, and drama. Development of the basic skills used to create imaginative literature. Fundamentals of craft and composition; the distinct but related techniques used in the three genres. Story, scene, and character in fiction; sound, line, image, and voice in poetry; monologue, dialogue, and action in drama.

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Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
Hu
Term: Fall
Professor: Ben Glaser
MW 1:00pm-2:15pm

Introduction to the English literary tradition through close reading of select poems from the seventh through the seventeenth centuries. Emphasis on developing skills of literary interpretation and critical writing; diverse linguistic and social histories; and the many varieties of identity and authority in early literary cultures. Readings may include Beowulf, The Canterbury Tales, Middle English lyrics, The Faerie Queene, Paradise Lost, and poems by Isabella Whitney, Philip Sidney, William Shakespeare, Amelia Lanyer, John Donne, and George Herbert, among others.

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Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
WR, Hu
Term: Fall
MW 9:00am-10:15am

Introduction to the English literary tradition through close reading of select poems from the seventh through the seventeenth centuries. Emphasis on developing skills of literary interpretation and critical writing; diverse linguistic and social histories; and the many varieties of identity and authority in early literary cultures. Readings may include Beowulf, The Canterbury Tales, Middle English lyrics, The Faerie Queene, Paradise Lost, and poems by Isabella Whitney, Philip Sidney, William Shakespeare, Amelia Lanyer, John Donne, and George Herbert, among others.

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Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
WR, Hu
Term: Fall
TTh 1:00pm-2:15pm

Introduction to the English literary tradition through close reading of select poems from the seventh through the seventeenth centuries. Emphasis on developing skills of literary interpretation and critical writing; diverse linguistic and social histories; and the many varieties of identity and authority in early literary cultures. Readings may include Beowulf, The Canterbury Tales, Middle English lyrics, The Faerie Queene, Paradise Lost, and poems by Isabella Whitney, Philip Sidney, William Shakespeare, Amelia Lanyer, John Donne, and George Herbert, among others.

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Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
WR, Hu
Term: Fall
TTh 4:00pm-5:15pm

Introduction to the English literary tradition through close reading of select poems from the seventh through the seventeenth centuries. Emphasis on developing skills of literary interpretation and critical writing; diverse linguistic and social histories; and the many varieties of identity and authority in early literary cultures. Readings may include Beowulf, The Canterbury Tales, Middle English lyrics, The Faerie Queene, Paradise Lost, and poems by Isabella Whitney, Philip Sidney, William Shakespeare, Amelia Lanyer, John Donne, and George Herbert, among others.

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Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
WR, Hu
Term: Fall
Professor: Michael Warner
TTh 9:00am-10:15am

Introduction to the American literary tradition in a variety of poetic and narrative forms and in diverse historical contexts. Emphasis on developing skills of literary interpretation and critical writing; diverse linguistic and social histories; and the place of race, class, gender, and sexuality in American literary culture. Authors may include Phillis Wheatley, Henry David Thoreau, Herman Melville, Walt Whitman, Emily Dickinson, Frederick Douglass, Gertrude Stein, Langston Hughes, Ralph Ellison, Flannery O’Connor, Alan Ginsberg, Chang-Rae Lee, and Toni Morrison, among others.

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Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
WR, Hu
Term: Fall
Professor: Alanna Hickey
MW 1:00pm-2:15pm

Introduction to the American literary tradition in a variety of poetic and narrative forms and in diverse historical contexts. Emphasis on developing skills of literary interpretation and critical writing; diverse linguistic and social histories; and the place of race, class, gender, and sexuality in American literary culture. Authors may include Phillis Wheatley, Henry David Thoreau, Herman Melville, Walt Whitman, Emily Dickinson, Frederick Douglass, Gertrude Stein, Langston Hughes, Ralph Ellison, Flannery O’Connor, Alan Ginsberg, Chang-Rae Lee, and Toni Morrison, among others.

_

Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
WR, Hu
Term: Fall
Professor: Alanna Hickey
MW 2:30pm-3:45pm

Introduction to the American literary tradition in a variety of poetic and narrative forms and in diverse historical contexts. Emphasis on developing skills of literary interpretation and critical writing; diverse linguistic and social histories; and the place of race, class, gender, and sexuality in American literary culture. Authors may include Phillis Wheatley, Henry David Thoreau, Herman Melville, Walt Whitman, Emily Dickinson, Frederick Douglass, Gertrude Stein, Langston Hughes, Ralph Ellison, Flannery O’Connor, Alan Ginsberg, Chang-Rae Lee, and Toni Morrison, among others.

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Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
American Lit
WR, Hu
Term: Fall
Professor: R. John Williams
MW 4:00pm-5:15pm

Introduction to the American literary tradition in a variety of poetic and narrative forms and in diverse historical contexts. Emphasis on developing skills of literary interpretation and critical writing; diverse linguistic and social histories; and the place of race, class, gender, and sexuality in American literary culture. Authors may include Phillis Wheatley, Henry David Thoreau, Herman Melville, Walt Whitman, Emily Dickinson, Frederick Douglass, Gertrude Stein, Langston Hughes, Ralph Ellison, Flannery O’Connor, Alan Ginsberg, Chang-Rae Lee, and Toni Morrison, among others.

_

Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
WR, Hu
Term: Fall
Professor: Jill Richards
TTh 9:00am-10:15am

An introduction to the literary traditions of the Anglophone world in a variety of poetic and narrative forms and historical contexts. Emphasis on developing skills of literary interpretation and critical writing; diverse linguistic, cultural and racial histories; and on the politics of empire and liberation struggles. Authors may include Daniel Defoe, Mary Prince, J. M. Synge, James Joyce, C. L. R. James, Claude McKay, Jean Rhys, Yvonne Vera, Chinua Achebe, Ngũgĩ wa Thiong’o, J. M. Coetzee, Brian Friel, Amitav Ghosh, Salman Rushdie, Alice Munro, Derek Walcott, and Patrick White, among others.

_

Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
WR, Hu
Term: Fall
Professor: Jill Richards
TTh 1:00pm-2:15pm

An introduction to the literary traditions of the Anglophone world in a variety of poetic and narrative forms and historical contexts. Emphasis on developing skills of literary interpretation and critical writing; diverse linguistic, cultural and racial histories; and on the politics of empire and liberation struggles. Authors may include Daniel Defoe, Mary Prince, J. M. Synge, James Joyce, C. L. R. James, Claude McKay, Jean Rhys, Yvonne Vera, Chinua Achebe, Ngũgĩ wa Thiong’o, J. M. Coetzee, Brian Friel, Amitav Ghosh, Salman Rushdie, Alice Munro, Derek Walcott, and Patrick White, among others.

_

Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
WR, Hu
Term: Fall
Professor: Timothy Robinson
TTh 2:30pm-3:45pm

The genre of tragedy from its origins in ancient Greece and Rome through the European Renaissance to the present day. Themes of justice, religion, free will, family, gender, race, and dramaturgy. Works include Homer’s Iliad and plays by Aeschylus, Sophocles, Euripides, Seneca, Shakespeare, Racine, Ibsen, Chekhov, Brecht, Beckett, and Soyinka. Focus on textual analysis and on developing the craft of persuasive argument through writing.

Also LITR 168

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Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
WR, Hu
Term: Fall
Professor: Katja Lindskog
MW 2:30pm-3:45pm

The genre of tragedy from its origins in ancient Greece and Rome through the European Renaissance to the present day. Themes of justice, religion, free will, family, gender, race, and dramaturgy. Works include Homer’s Iliad and plays by Aeschylus, Sophocles, Euripides, Seneca, Shakespeare, Racine, Ibsen, Chekhov, Brecht, Beckett, and Soyinka. Focus on textual analysis and on developing the craft of persuasive argument through writing.

Also LITR 168

_

Students who wish to enroll in this seminar should participate in online preregistration, August 22 at 9:00 a.m. - August 27 at 5:00 p.m.

Introductory Classes
WR, Hu
Term: Fall
Professor: Adam Reid Sexton
MW 2:30pm-3:45pm

Fundamentals of the craft of fiction writing explored through readings from classic and contemporary short stories and novels. Focus on how each author has used the fundamentals of craft. Writing exercises emphasize elements such as voice, structure, point of view, character, and tone.

This course is open to all students, but freshmen and sophomores are especially welcome.

No application required prior to the first class.

Creative Writing
Hu
Term: Spring , Term: Fall
Professor: David Gorin
TTh 1:00pm-2:15pm

An introduction to reading and writing poetry. Classic examples from Shakespeare and Milton, the modernist poetics of Stein, Pound, Moore, and Stevens, and recent work in a variety of forms and traditions. Students develop a portfolio of poems and write an essay on the poetic craft of poets who have influenced their work.

This course is open to all students, but freshmen and sophomores are especially welcome.

No application required prior to the first class.

Creative Writing
Hu
Term: Fall
Professor: Emily Thornbury
TTh 2:30pm-3:45pm

An introduction to the literature and culture of earliest England. A selection of prose and verse, including riddles, heroic poetry, meditations on loss, a dream vision, and excerpts from Beowulf, all read in the original Old English.

Also LING 150

Seminars
Medieval Lit
Hu
Term: Fall
Professor: Langdon Hammer
TTh 10:30am-11:20am, 1 HTBA

Poets and poetic movements from the second half of the twentieth century in the United States, England, Ireland, and the Caribbean. Authors include Bishop, Lowell, O’Hara, Ginsberg, Plath, Ashbery, Merrill, Larkin, Gunn, Hill, Heaney, Muldoon, and Walcott.

Lectures
20/21 C Lit
WR, Hu
Term: Fall
Professor: Caleb Smith
MW 1:30pm-2:20pm, 1 HTBA

An introduction to the literature and culture of the American South, a region of the mind identified with the former Confederate States of America and fabricated from a mix of beautiful dreams and violent nightmares, including: histories of slavery and settler colonialism, gothic fiction, the Delta blues, Hollywood movies, evangelical sermons, The Confessions of Nat Turner, love poems, protest poems, prison songs, The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, country music, photographs, “Strange Fruit,” folk tales, memoirs, cookbook recipes, and other fantasies. Close reading, cultural analysis, and historical context. Literary works by Capote, Faulkner, Hurston, Jacobs, O’Connor, Poe, Twain, Toomer, Walker, Welty, Wright. Music, film, and other media.

Also AMST 239

Lectures
18/19 C Lit with permission, 20/21 C Lit with permission
Term: Fall
Professor: Lawrence Manley
MW 10:30am-11:20am, 1 HTBA

Love, sex, gender, society, and theater practice in Shakespeare’s comic genres, from the early farces and romantic comedies to the problem plays and late romances.

Lectures
Renaissance Lit
WR, Hu
Term: Fall
Professor: James Bundy
F 1:30pm-3:20pm

A practicum in acting verse drama, focusing on tools to mine the printed text for given circumstances, character, objective, and action; noting the opportunities and limitations that the printed play script presents; and promoting both the expressive freedom and responsibility of the actor as an interpretive and collaborative artist in rehearsal. The course will include work on sonnets, monologues, and scenes.

Admission by audition. Preference to seniors and juniors; open to nonmajors.

Also THST 315

Seminars
Renaissance Lit
Hu
Term: Fall
Professor: Karin Roffman
F 1:30pm-3:20pm

This course on 20th and 21st century poetry studies the non-symbolic use of familiar objects in poems. We meet alternating weeks in the Beinecke library archives and the Yale Art Gallery objects study classroom to discover literary, material, and biographical histories of poems and objects. Additionally, there are scheduled readings and discussions with contemporary poets. Assignments include both analytical essays and the creation of online exhibitions.

Also AMST 346, HUMS 252

Seminars
20/21 C Lit
WR, Hu
Term: Fall
Professor: Alan Burdick
Th 1:30pm-3:20pm

Exploration of ways in which the environment and the natural world can be channeled for literary expression. Reading and discussion of essays, reportage, and book-length works, by scientists and non-scientists alike. Students learn how to create narrative tension while also conveying complex—sometimes highly technical—information; the role of the first person in this type of writing; and where the human environment ends and the non-human one begins.

No application required prior to the first class.

Also EVST 224

Creative Writing
WR
Term: Fall
Professor: Amity Gaige
M 3:30pm-5:20pm

An intensive introduction to the craft of fiction, designed for aspiring creative writers. Readings and experimental exercises will lead to the completion of a short story. This course is a workshop, centered around in-depth discussion of both published literature and student-written fiction.

In this fiction writing course, students will be assigned weekly writing exercises designed to teach new techniques as well as generate short stories.  A full short story (and optional second) will be peer reviewed by the class.  Requirements also include weekly reading assignments.  Aspects of fiction to be explored include choice of narrator, structure, language, and meaning.

Fall application due by noon on August 15.

APPLICATION FORM

 
Creative Writing
Term: Fall
W 3:30pm-5:20pm

An intensive introduction to the craft of fiction, designed for aspiring creative writers. Focus on the fundamentals of narrative technique and peer review.

Fall application due by noon on August 15.

APPLICATION FORM

Creative Writing
Term: Fall
Professor: Louise Glück
T 1:30pm-3:20pm

A seminar workshop for students who are beginning to write poetry or who have no prior workshop experience at Yale. Preference given to freshmen and sophomores.

Admission to writing courses is by application and is based chiefly on work submitted by the student.

Fall application due by noon on August 15.

APPLICATION FORM

Special application instructions: Students should submit a sample of their own work, if it exists; in addition, all applicants should submit a paragraph on a literary work of any kind, any period: the choice should reflect personal admiration.

Creative Writing
Term: Fall
TTh 11:35am-12:50pm

A workshop on journalistic strategies for looking at and writing about contemporary paintings of the human figure. Practitioners and theorists of figurative painting; controversies, partisans, and opponents. Includes field trips to museums and galleries in New York City.

No application required prior to the first class.

Also HSAR 460, HUMS 185

Creative Writing
WR, Hu
Term: Fall
Professor: Aaron Tracy
M 3:30pm-5:20pm

This course focuses on crafting television drama with a strong emphasis on creating and developing an original concept from premise to pilot. Much has been written about the current “golden age” of dramatic television; the course takes as one of its precepts that the finest television dramas being created today aspire to literary quality. Our aim this term is to demystify the process of creating and writing serious television drama, for students of all levels, from beginners to more experienced writers of drama and fiction.
 
We will approach the writing of television drama like any other form of fiction writing, as a craft. To that end, we will closely read original scripts of critically-acclaimed series from a diverse range of creators. By the end of the course, students will be responsible for creating a series document which will include formal story and world descriptions, orchestrated character biographies, a detailed pilot outline, and two or more acts of an original series pilot.

No application required prior to the first class.

Creative Writing
Term: Fall
Professor: Leslie Brisman
MW 11:35am-12:50pm

Introduction to the work of Blake, Coleridge, Wordsworth, Shelley, and Keats, with some attention to Byron, to the poets’ own problematic revisions, and to the minor poets of this rich period of poetic innovation and revolutionary spirit.

Graduate students would participate in the seminar with undergraduates, but also have some opportunities to explore in sessions exclusive to them (as well as in essays) the rich critical tradition and its most recent configurations. How many such sessions we would have would depend on the number of students interested.

Also ENGL 774

Seminars
18/19 C Lit
WR, Hu
Term: Fall
M 9:25am-11:15am

A course on the craft of fiction writing for young adult readers. At the start of the semester, we read widely in the genre to identify the principles of craft at the sentence—and narrative—level, with the aim of creating a style that is original and a story narrative that is powerful. In the second half of the semester, students read and critique one another’s fiction. Open to writers of all levels and abilities.

No application required prior to the first class.

Creative Writing
Term: Fall
Professor: Stefanie Markovits, Professor: Stuart Semmel
MW 11:35am-12:50pm

British historical narratives in the nineteenth century, an age often cited as the crucible of modern historical consciousness. How a period of industrialization and democratization grounded itself in imagined pasts—whether recent or distant, domestic or foreign—in both historical novels and works by historians who presented programmatic statements about the nature of historical development.

Also HIST 262J, HUMS 410

Seminars
18/19 C Lit
WR, Hu
Term: Fall
Professor: Ruth Yeazell
TTh 11:35am-12:25pm, 1 HTBA

A selection of nineteenth-century novels, with particular attention to questions of gender, class, and narrative form. Authors chosen from the Brontës, Gaskell, Dickens, Collins, Eliot, Trollope, and Hardy.

WGSS 266

Lectures
18/19 C Lit
Hu
Term: Fall
Professor: Anastasia Eccles
MW 4:00pm-5:15pm

Reading of selected works by Jane Austen and Walter Scott—the preeminent novelists of the Romantic period—with special attention to reception and the formation of the related concepts of “history” and “manners.”  Readings include: Sense and Sensibility, Mansfield Park, Persuasion, Waverley, and Ivanhoe.

Seminars
18/19 C Lit
WR, Hu
Term: Fall
Professor: Michael Warner
TTh 1:00pm-2:15pm

Introduction to writing from the period leading up to and through the Civil War. The growth of African American writing in an antislavery context; the national book market and its association with national culture; emergence of a language of environment; romantic ecology and American pastoral; the “ecological Indian”; evangelicalism and the secular; sentimentalism and gender; the emergence of sexuality; poetics.

Also AMST 281

Seminars
18/19 C Lit
WR, Hu
Term: Fall
Professor: R. John Williams
MW 2:30pm-3:45pm

A survey of literature’s role in anticipating and constructing potential futures since 1887. Early Anglo-American and European futurism during the years leading up to World War I; futures of speculative fiction during the Cold War; futuristic dreams of contemporary cyberpunk. What literature can reveal about the human need to understand both what is coming and how to respond to it.

Seminars
18/19 C Lit with permission, 20/21 C Lit
WR, Hu
Term: Fall
MW 2:30pm-3:45pm

Exploration of the life of English literature in the colonial and postcolonial world, from the nineteenth century to the present. Close reading of literary texts, publishing statistics, school textbooks, film, and postcolonial theory. Topics include canon formation, education reform, colonial publishing, gender and education, global Shakespeare.

Also LITR 261

Seminars
18/19 C Lit with permission, 20/21 C Lit
WR, Hu
Term: Fall
Professor: Joseph Cleary
MW 2:30pm-3:45pm

A broad overview of Irish culture and literature between roughly 1890 and the end of World War II. The efforts of Irish writers to end Ireland’s long-standing cultural subordination to England and to create a distinctive and distinguished Irish national literature. Discussion of recent postcolonial, Marxist, and world literature critical approaches to the period. Authors include Oscar Wilde, W. B. Yeats, James Joyce, Elizabeth Bowen, and Samuel Beckett.

Seminars
18/19 C Lit with permission, 20/21 C Lit
Hu
Term: Fall
Th 1:30pm-3:20pm

This course is designed to look at issues of faith through the lens of poetry. With some notable exceptions, we will concentrate on modern poetry—that is, poetry written between 1850 and 2017. Inevitably we will also look at poetry through the lens of faith, but a working assumption of the course is that a poem is, for a reader (it’s more complicated for a writer), art first and faith second. You may want to challenge this assumption. The entire course may end up being a challenge to this assumption.

“Faith” in this course does not necessarily mean Christianity, though that will inevitably be the context for reading many of the poems, given that Christianity is so important to the history of poetry in English. But we will also engage with poems from other faith traditions, as well as with poems that are wholly secular and even adamantly anti-religious.

The reading in this course is intensive rather than extensive. You will need to read every poem many times. You will need to memorize at least one of them and parts of others. We will read a wide variety of poets but usually only 1-3 poems from each of them.

You will also be expected to read select critical pieces, all by poets. These are primarily to serve as examples of some of the ways that recent poets have thought about their art in relation to faith and culture, but they are also intended to give you some models for your final paper. I will explain this carefully in class.

Also HUMS 253, RLST 233

Seminars
18/19 C Lit with permission, 20/21 C Lit with permission
Hu
Term: Fall
Professor: Marc Robinson
T 1.30pm-3.20pm

Study of the drama, performance, and dance theater created in the last ten years, with special attention to work produced in 2017-2018. Readings from both published and unpublished American and British plays, contemporary criticism and theory, interviews, and essays by the artists themselves. Video of works created by companies such as Elevator Repair Service and the Nature Theater of Oklahoma. May include attendance of productions at performance spaces in and around New York City.

Also THST 329

Seminars
20/21 C Lit
Hu
Term: Fall
Professor: Margaret Homans
TTh 11:35am-12:50pm

Historical survey of works of fiction that have shaped and responded to feminist, queer, and transgender thought from the late eighteenth century to the present. Authors include Wollstonecraft, C. Bronte, H. Jacobs, C. P. Gilman, R. Hall, Woolf, Wittig, Walker, Anzaldua, Morrison, Kingston, Winterson, and Bechdel.

Also WGSS 339

Seminars
18/19 C Lit with permission, 20/21 C Lit with permission
WR, Hu
Term: Fall
Professor: Leslie Brisman
MW 2:30pm-3:45pm

Study of the Bible as a literature—a collection of works exhibiting a variety of attitudes toward the conflicting claims of tradition and originality, historicity and literariness.

The course should not be taken concurrently with RLST 145a and is not open to first year students; but it is open to non-majors who have taken a prior WR course or others who are eager to profit from the progress possible from one to another of the five writing assignments.

Also LITR 154

Seminars
18/19 C Lit with permission
WR, Hu
Term: Fall
Professor: Jessica Brantley
T 9:25am-11:15am

The course offers a contextual study of four of the greatest (and most enigmatic) Middle English poems—Pearl, Patience, Cleanness, and Sir Gawain and the Green Knight. At its center is British Library MS Cotton Nero A.x, the single medieval book that contains them all. In addition to reading the poems closely in their manuscript context, we examine associated artworks, from the twelve illustrations in the Cotton MS, to St. Erkenwald, a poem preserved elsewhere that some argue was written by the same author. Finally, we think about the modern reception of the poems through a serious engagement with scholarly debate surrounding them, and also through comparative work with translations.

Also ENGL 537

Senior Seminars
Medieval Lit
Hu
Term: Fall
Professor: Caryl Phillips
M 1:30pm-3:20pm

A study of literature that responds to a changing post–World War II Britain, with attention to the problem of who “belongs” and who is an “outsider.” Authors include William Trevor, Kazuo Ishiguro, Jean Rhys, Samuel Selvon, Ruth Prawer Jhabvala, and John Osborne.

Senior Seminars
20/21 C Lit
WR, Hu
Term: Fall
Professor: Joseph Cleary
T 1:30pm-3:20pm

Drawing on recent scholarship on modernist studies, postcolonial studies, and literary world-systems, this seminar explores how some leading Anglophone writers produced bold new works that engaged with conceptions of European civilizational crisis, the transfer of political power and cultural capital from Europe to the United States, and a rapidly-changing world order. Readings include Pascale Casanova, Alexis de Tocqueville, Henry James, Ford Maddox Ford, Ezra Pound, James Joyce, D. H. Lawrence, T. S. Eliot, W. B. Yeats, Gertrude Stein, and F. Scott Fitzgerald.

Also LITR 412

Senior Seminars
American Lit w/Permission
20/21 C Lit
WR, Hu
Term: Fall
Professor: Stephanie Newell
Th 9:25am-11:15am

Introduction to experimental African novels that challenge realist and documentary modes of representation. Topics include mythology, gender subversion, politics, the city, migration, and the self. Ways of reading African and postcolonial literature through the lenses of identity, history, and nation.

Also AFAM 449, AFST 449

Senior Seminars
20/21 C Lit
WR, Hu
Term: Fall
Professor: Donald Margulies
T 2:30pm-5:00pm

A seminar and workshop in writing for the stage. Readings include modern American and British plays by Pinter, Mamet, Churchill, Kushner, Williams, and Wilder. Emphasis on play structure, character, and conflict. In addition to weekly exercises, students write a one-act play.

Fall application due by noon on August 15.

APPLICATION FORM

Special application instructions: Your Writing Sample may be in any genre; there is no limit to the length of your Statement of Purpose.

Also THST 320

Creative Writing
Term: Fall
Professor: Robyn Creswell
MW 2:30pm-3:45pm

This course combines a seminar on the history and theory of translation with a hands-on workshop. The readings will lead us through a series of case studies comparing, on the one hand, multiple translations of given literary works and, on the other, classic statements about translation—by translators themselves and prominent theorists. We’ll consider both poetry and prose from the Bible, selections from Chinese, Greek, and Latin verse, classical Arabic and Persian literature, prose by Cervantes, Borges, and others, and modern European poetry (including Pushkin, Baudelaire, and Rilke). Students will be expected to prepare short class presentations, participate in a weekly workshop, try their hand at a series of translation exercises, and undertake an intensive, semester-long translation project. Proficiency in a foreign language is required. May be taken for graduate credit by permission of the student’s department.

No application required prior to the first class.  

Also HUMS 427, JDST 316, LITR 348

Creative Writing
Hu
Term: Fall
T 9:25am-11:15am

An upper-level non-fiction writing seminar in which students will learn how to tell stories about science, medicine, and the environment for a broad public audience.  Admission to the course is by application only.

Applications for Fall 2018 are due by noon on Wednesday, August 15, 2018.

In this course, we will read exemplary pieces by the likes of Oliver Sacks, Elizabeth Kolbert, Rachel Carson, and Atul Gawande. We will learn from them how to translate complex subjects into compelling prose. Writers will visit as guest speakers, and the class will go on a reporting field trip. Students will report and write a series of stories, culminating in a magazine-length feature. I will meet individually with students to discuss and edit their work, and each student’s work will be discussed in class workshops.

This course has no prerequisites, either in terms of courses or experience in journalism. Each year’s class is typically made up of students from a range of backgrounds: pre-med students who want to learn how to communicate effectively as doctors, aspiring journalists interested in reporting on science, fiction writers seeking to expand their range, environmental studies majors who want to prepare for careers in policy-making, and science majors who want to become scientists who can fully participate in public conversations about the place of science in society.

Enrollment is limited to undergraduates, but graduate students can request to audit the course. Freshmen should wait to apply after taking other writing courses or writing for student publications. While most accepted students are juniors and seniors, I sometimes accept sophomores.

Please email applications directly to me at carl@carlzimmer.com

Your application should include the following:

  1. Your name, year, major, and email address.
  2. A note in which you briefly describe your background and explain why you’d like to take the course. Include the writing courses, if any, that you’ve already taken, and publications you’ve written for. Also indicate which other writing courses, if any, you’re applying to for Fall 2018.
  3. One or two pieces of nonacademic, nonfiction writing. (No fiction or scientific papers, please.) Indicate the course or publication (including url) for which you wrote each sample. Unpublished work that you didn’t write for a class is also acceptable; please note if this is the case on your piece. Your writing samples should total 5-15 pages double spaced. It’s okay if they’re longer than that, but please add a note about the pieces to explain why you want to use them. I will use these samples to decide whether to admit students to the class, so they should demonstrate strengths in some of the skills this kind of writing calls for, such as engaging style, a strong narrative, and deep reporting skills.

If you have any questions about whether this is the right class for you, please email me. If you’d like to talk to a former student about their experience, contact Sonia Wang sonia.wang@yale.edu or Erin Wang erin.wang@yale.edu

A detailed syllabus for this fall will be available online this summer when the course is listed in the Yale catalog. A class reporting trip to a lab at Yale on Thursday, September 6 at 4 pm will be mandatory.

Admitted students will be notified within a week after the application deadline. Be prepared to respond promptly to an offer for a spot in the class, so that I can fill any open spaces with students on the wait-list. Please also note that with very rare exceptions, the English Department does not allow students to take more than one writing seminar in a semester. If you are admitted to more than one writing seminar, including college seminars, you must notify both instructors and choose only one.

Students on the final accepted list will receive a notification from me, along with brief reading and writing assignments to be completed for the first class on Tuesday September 4.

Also EVST 215, MB&B 459

Creative Writing
WR
Term: Fall
Professor: Louise Glück
M 3:30pm-5:20pm

A seminar and workshop in the writing of verse.

May be repeated for credit with a different instructor.

Fall application due by noon on August 15.

PLEASE NOTE: this class will meet for the first time on Labor Day, Monday, September 3, and NOT on Friday, August 31.

APPLICATION FORM

Creative Writing
Term: Fall
Professor: Caryl Phillips
T 1:30pm-3:20pm

An advanced workshop in the craft of writing fiction.

May be repeated for credit with a different instructor.

Fall application due by noon on August 15.

APPLICATION FORM

Creative Writing
Term: Fall
Professor: Cynthia Zarin
T 3:30pm-5:20pm

A seminar and workshop in the contemporary essay. Public versus private voice, the responsibilities of the essayist, and the evolution of writing in the first person. Readings include essays by Joan Didion, Jonathan Lethem, Jenny Diski, Zadie Smith, M. F. K. Fisher, Bruce Chatwin, John Berger, and Oliver Sacks.

Fall application due by noon on August 15.

APPLICATION FORM

Creative Writing
Term: Fall
Professor: Steven Brill
M 9:00-10:50

ENGLISH 467A: JOURNALISM
Steven Brill ● sb@brillbusiness.com ● (212) 332-6301
Fall 2018

DESCRIPTION:  This seminar – the core course for Yale Journalism Initiative – is for those interested in understanding the changing role of journalism, in coming to grips with the challenges and opportunities related to the business model of journalism in a digital, global age, and in learning the practice of journalism. Grades will be based on participation and written work, with an emphasis on the final project.

We will focus on both imaginative and critical thinking as it applies to reporting and to creating ways and forms of telling a story so that it has maximum impact in a world cluttered with media and experiencing profound challenges to making journalism economically viable.
But this is not a theoretical exercise. We will be dealing with the hard core questions of how good and “bad” journalism happens – from understanding how Harvey Weinstein was unmasked (and why it took so long) to uncovering the workings or failings of some obscure but vital government agency (and getting people to care about it) to understanding the modern economic challenges of journalism. This is also a course about the nuts and bolts of effective writing and presentation.

One or perhaps two extra (and voluntary) sessions will take place in New York City, so that students can meet with working journalists there.

I will meet with each student individually during the term as often as necessary in order to provide feedback, help with the final project, and (if requested) provide career guidance.

Guest instructors during two of the sessions will be Bob Woodward and a variety of successful journalists who took this seminar in prior years.

Successful completion of this course and other aspects of the Yale Journalism Initiative will qualify students to be designated Yale Journalism Scholars. For more information on the Yale Journalism Initiative, see https://ocs.yale.edu/get-advice/yale-journalism-initiative.

INSTRUCTOR: Steven Brill, a graduate of Yale College and Yale Law School, worked as a writer for New York Magazine, Esquire, and Harpers while in Law School. In 1978, he was the author of a best-selling book on the Teamsters Union. A year later, he launched The American Lawyer Magazine and later expanded it into ten legal publications across the country. In 1991 Brill launched Court TV and, in 1998, Brill’s Content Magazine. In 2009, he founded Journalism Online, LLC, to enable newspapers, magazines, and online publishers to earn revenue from the journalism they publish online. In the last six years, he has also written feature articles for The New Yorker, the New York Times Magazine, The Atlantic, Fortune, and TIME. In 2011, he wrote Class Warfare: Inside the Fight To Fix America’s Schools. In 2013, he authored a special edition of TIME Magazine – “Bitter Pill: How Medical Bills Are Killing Us” – about healthcare prices and profits. His book about American healthcare and the fight over Obamacare, also a best-seller, was published in early 2015 by Random House. His latest book – TAILSPIN: The People and Forces Behind America’s Fifty-Year Fall – and Those Fighting to Reverse It – was published by Knopf in May of 2018 and also became a best seller.

Brill currently serves as the co-founder and co-CEO of NewsGuard, a company dedicated to rating the reliability of online news sites.

MEETINGS: Mondays, 9:00 – 10:50 a.m. in LC 103

ENTRANCE REQUIREMENTS: The seminar is open to all sophomores, juniors, and seniors. In general, we are looking for a range of students – some with demonstrated commitment to and experience in journalism, others without that background but who can write well, want to learn, and perhaps have an added dimension to offer in class discussions (such as an intense interest in politics, the arts, law, or economics), which they might want to apply to journalism.

Admission:

Each student must submit the following simple, two-part application package to sb@brillbusiness.com. Please submit the package by the evening of Monday, August 13, 2018.

I will post with the English Department the final list of those accepted by Friday, August 17, if not earlier. I will also email all accepted students. There will be a short wait list, too.

The two-part application should consist of:

  1. No more than two double-spaced pages: A written statement explaining your interest in the class and in the Yale Journalism Scholars program. This should also include your Yale class year, any previous writing courses that you have taken, a brief description of your extra-curricular activities and a description of your journalism experience.
  2. One writing sample – either an article that you have published in an on- or off- campus publication or something that you submitted for a class.

READINGS: The syllabus provides an outline of what we will cover in the course.  The course packet is available at TYCO, and all books are available at the Yale bookstore. Most of the reading will be from the “Other Reading” materials described below, supplemented by these books:

BOOKS: John Hersey, Hiroshima
    James Stewart, Follow the Story: How to Write Successful Non-Fiction
    Gay Talese, The Gay Talese Reader
    Steven Brill, TAILSPIN – to be handed out in class.

OTHER READING: Various newspaper articles, magazine pieces and online postings intended to illustrate different forms and methods (and successes and failures of) journalism, ranging from Woodward and Bernstein’s original Watergate reporting, to celebrity profiles, to bulletins on Supreme Court decisions, to data-centric journalism at ProPublica. (All assembled in the course packet.)

ASSIGNMENTS:

  • Biographical profile – 2,000 words – of the person sitting next to you in this seminar.
  • Critiquing and editing of several published articles from time to time.
  • Critiquing and editing your fellow students’ work from time to time.
  • Coming to class with one original story idea every other week.
  • Writing a two-page strategic outline for an interview with a potentially hostile source.
  • Creating, with two partners, a journalism enterprise that does well and is financially self-sustaining.
  • Final Assignment: 3,500-4,000 word publishable magazine (or e-magazine) feature story or three-part newspaper series – to be edited by one of your classmates before final submission to me.

ADDITIONAL NOTE: Because we will regularly discuss current journalism, all participants in the program should be prepared to bring a laptop or tablet to class.

 _____________________________________________________________________________

Printable version

SYLLABUS

Also PLSC 253

Journalism
WR
Term: Fall
Professor: Anne Fadiman
Th 2:30pm-5:20pm

A seminar and workshop with the theme “At Home in America.” Students consider the varied ways in which modern American literary journalists write about place, and address the theme themselves in both reportorial and first-person work.

Fall application due by noon on August 15.

APPLICATION FORM

Please read the description below, paying special attention to the boldface sections, some of which describe exceptions to the standard application procedure.

This class is part lecture, part seminar, part workshop. Its purpose is to examine and attempt good nonfiction writing through the microcosm of setting. How do we see America (whether urban or rural, east or west, rich or poor) as home? We will attempt to dismantle some of the traditional barriers between academic reading and pleasure reading as we discuss works by Ta-Nehisi Coates, Joan Didion, Ian Frazier, Adrian Nicole LeBlanc, John McPhee, and others. Students will write four pieces (two first-person, two reportorial), the last of which is a substantial profile reported in New Haven, outside the Yale campus, on someone found in the Greater New Haven Yellow Pages. They will also critique each other’s work both orally and via email. Each student will have at least six individual conferences with me, most of them an hour long, to discuss and edit his or her work.

English 469 has no prerequisites, which means that you may apply even if you have no reporting experience. I’m more interested in the grace of your writing style and the sound of your voice. The class is usually a mix of seasoned journalists and creative writers. Fiction writers, playwrights, and essayists bring valuable gifts to our table. Though most 469ers have been juniors and seniors, I have accepted an occasional sophomore. Graduate students shouldn’t apply (sorry); freshmen should wait.
 
Students who wish to apply to English 469 should submit the standard Application for Writing Courses (see https://english.yale.edu/courses/undergraduate-courses/creative-writing/creative-writing-and-journalism-course-application) by noon on Wednesday, August 15.  Please note the following special instructions for English 469 applications:

           1. The standard application specifies “a” writing sample. Ignore that! I can assess your work better if you submit two samples, totaling about 5-15 double-spaced pages. (The total length may exceed that, but if it does, please mark the sections to which I should pay particular attention.) You may even submit three samples if one is very short (for instance, a Daily Themes one-pager, in which case please note the prompt).

           2. If possible, your samples should belong to the same genre we’ll be reading and writing (“non-non”–nonacademic nonfiction). Essays, literary journalism, and personal essays would all be appropriate. (If fiction is your strength, one but not both of your samples may be a short story. Similarly, if you’re a playwright, one sample may be a scene from a play. The other sample should be non-non.) Be sure to choose pieces that give your literary style a thorough airing.

           3. Your “statement of purpose” should be a note to me that explains some things your samples don’t. The application suggests “a paragraph,” but you are welcome to write as long a note as you wish. For instance: Why do you want to take the class? What would you contribute to it? What writing experience and honors have you accumulated? (I’ll still consider you if the answer is None and None.) What are you majoring in? (English majors will receive no special preference.) Is there anything else that might help me understand you as a writer or a person? Your note need not be conventional; it should sound like you.

           4. When you list the writing classes you’ve taken, please include the class’s name and instructor, not just its number.          

If you have questions about English 469 before you apply, or after you hear about admission and are wondering if it’s the right class for you, you’re welcome to write me (anne.fadiman@yale.edu). Two veterans of last year’s class have also volunteered to field them. Anna Ayres-Brown (antonia.ayres-brown@yale.edu) came to 469 with reporting experience; Henry Reichard (henry.reichard@yale.edu) didn’t, but he survived unscathed.

Admitted students will be notified about a week before the first class. Please be ready to respond with a yea or nay so that wait-listers can be swiftly admitted. The roster will be complete (and brief reading assigned) before the first class on August 30.
 

Creative Writing
WR, Hu
Term: Fall
W 1:30pm-3:20pm

The writer’s work is making sentences. Everything else is secondary. But too often our intentions blind us to the sentences we are actually making, or we feel that, somehow, form or genre is more important than the sentence itself. This workshop will scrutinize your nonfiction prose, looking for the opportunities, the energy, the clarity that may be lying hidden there. We’ll be aided by many other writers—Auden, Didion, McPhee, Baldwin, Joseph Roth, Kapuscinski, Dillard, Oates, etc. We’ll be thinking about writing as an act of discovery and the sentence as the smallest unit of perception. That means we’ll be using your writing. I’ll expect you to be writing new each week for this course, and we’ll all be reading each others’ work every week as we go through the semester. The goal is quite simply to clarify the act of discovering sentences and, in doing so, discovering the better writer within you.

Not open to freshmen.

Fall application due by noon on August 15.

APPLICATION FORM

Creative Writing
Hu
Term: Fall
Professor: Deborah Margolin
MW 3:30-5:20

A seminar and workshop in playwriting. Emphasis on developing an individual voice. Scenes read and critiqued in class.

Admission by application, with priority to Theater Studies majors. A writing sample and statement of purpose should be submitted to the instructor before the first class meeting.

Also THST 321

Creative Writing
Term: Fall
Professor: Sarah Stillman
M 1:30pm-4:00pm

A feature-writing workshop in the reporting and writing of memorable long-form magazine narratives. Close readings of exemplary investigative works. Emphasis on reporting strategies and storytelling tools for interviewing diverse subjects, generating suspense, crafting scenes, and reconstructing events through use of human and non-human sources.

Fall application due by noon on August 15.

APPLICATION FORM

Special application instructions:

1. Writing Samples

I’ll be best equipped to assess your work if you provide two writing samples, rather than one. Ideally, your samples will amount to 5-15 pages in total, but if they exceed that length, please highlight specific sections on which you’d like me to focus. A third sample is permissible, if it is quite short – for instance, a Daily Themes one-pager.

What sort of work should you submit? Ideally, your samples will reflect the genre we’ll be covering in the class: non-fiction writing, of the sort that lets your reportorial passions and authorial voice stand out. You might consider offering up an example of journalistic work you’ve produced for a campus publication, but you needn’t be intimated if you don’t have published clips. (Fiction submissions are discouraged, but at least one sample can fall into the fictional camp, if you truly feel it’s your strong suit; prose poetry or some other creative form, too, could make for a brief third sample.)

2. Your “statement of purpose,” and pitches for work to write this term

In your “statement of purpose,” please feel free to disregard the suggested word count (“a short paragraph”); please write as much as you’d like. I’d love to learn about what draws you to this class on reporting and crafting narrative non-fiction; what you’re majoring in (and/or what topics constitute your obsessions); what kinds of reporting challenges excite you (stories you’ve pursued in the past, or ones you hope to chase in the future, or simply works of long-form reporting by journalists you admire); and anything else you want me to know about who you are as a reporter – or simply as a person – that informs your desire to take this class.

Most crucially: please offer a provisional pitch for a magazine-length story or two you might like to pursue this term, if anything comes to mind. (You can share your idea in several sentences, but please don’t go beyond a paragraph or two.) I promise I won’t hold you to these proposals! Nonetheless, I’d love a chance to hear about a feature story or two you’re keen to tackle in the months ahead; it can be an investigative idea (a company or entity or idea you’d like to interrogate); it can be a magazine-length profile you’d love to pursue; or it can be an event on the horizon, or in the archives, that you think would merit long-form coverage of at least 4,000 words.

3. “Writing Courses Previously Taken”

In this segment of your application, please provide not only the course number, but also the course name and instructor.

I look forward to reading your applications, and to getting acquainted with all of you as writers and thinkers!

Creative Writing
Term: Fall

A writing tutorial in fiction, poetry, playwriting, screenwriting, or nonfiction for students who have already taken writing courses at the intermediate and advanced levels. Conducted with a faculty member after approval by the director of undergraduate studies.

Students must apply in the previous term; deadlines and instructions are posted at https://english.yale.edu/undergraduate/applications-and-deadlines.

Prerequisite: two courses in writing.

Application Form

Creative Writing, Independent Projects
Term: Spring , Term: Fall

A writing tutorial in fiction, poetry, playwriting, screenwriting, or nonfiction for students who have already taken writing courses at the intermediate and advanced levels. Conducted with a faculty member after approval by the director of undergraduate studies.

Students must apply in the previous term; deadlines and instructions are posted at https://english.yale.edu/undergraduate/applications-and-deadlines.

Prerequisite: two courses in writing.

Application Form

Creative Writing, Independent Projects
Term: Spring , Term: Fall

Special projects set up by the student in an area of particular interest with the help of a faculty adviser and the director of undergraduate studies, intended to enable the student to cover material not otherwise offered by the department. The course may be used for research or for directed reading, but in either case a term paper or its equivalent is normally required. The student meets regularly with the faculty adviser. To apply for admission, a student must submit an application and prospectus signed by the faculty adviser to the office of the director of undergraduate studies.

Students must apply in the previous term; deadlines and instructions are posted at https://english.yale.edu/undergraduate/applications-and-deadlines.

Application Form

Independent Projects
Term: Spring , Term: Fall

A term-long project in writing, under tutorial supervision, aimed at producing a single longer work (or a collection of related shorter works). An application and prospectus signed by the student’s adviser must be submitted to the office of the director of undergraduate studies by November 16, 2018, for spring-term projects and by April 11, 2019, for fall-term projects. The project is due by the end of the last week of classes (fall term), or the end of the next-to-last week of classes (spring term).

Visit http://yalecreativewriting.yale.edu/writing-concentration for the complete program description, project guidelines, and application form.

Creative Writing, Independent Projects
Term: Spring , Term: Fall

A term-long project in writing, under tutorial supervision, aimed at producing a single longer work (or a collection of related shorter works). An application and prospectus signed by the student’s adviser must be submitted to the office of the director of undergraduate studies by November 16, 2018, for spring-term projects and by April 11, 2019, for fall-term projects. The project is due by the end of the last week of classes (fall term), or the end of the next-to-last week of classes (spring term).

Visit http://yalecreativewriting.yale.edu/writing-concentration for the complete program description, project guidelines, and application form.

Creative Writing, Independent Projects
Term: Spring , Term: Fall

The Senior Essay is an extended critical research and writing project undertaken with the guidance of a faculty advisor. For one-term senior essays, the essay itself is due in the office of the director of undergraduate studies according to the following schedule: (1) end of the fourth week of classes: five to ten pages of writing and/or an annotated bibliography; (2) end of the ninth week of classes: a rough draft of the complete essay; (3) end of the last week of classes (fall term) or end of the next-to-last week of classes (spring term): the completed essay. Consult the director of undergraduate studies regarding the schedule for submission of the yearlong senior essay.

Students wishing to undertake an independent senior essay in English must apply through the office of the director of undergraduate studies in the previous term; deadlines and instructions are posted at https://english.yale.edu/undergraduate/applications-and-deadlines.

Visit https://english.yale.edu/undergraduate/senior-essay for the complete program description, project guidelines, and application form.

Independent Projects
Term: Spring , Term: Fall

Second term of the optional yearlong senior essay. Students may begin the yearlong essay in the spring term of the junior year, allowing for significant summer research, with permission of the instructor.

Students must apply in the previous term; deadlines and instructions are posted at https://english.yale.edu/undergraduate/applications-and-deadlines.

Independent Projects
Term: Spring , Term: Fall
Professor: Emily Thornbury
Th 9:25am-11:15am

The essentials of the language and mastery of core vocabulary, then close study of a number of lovely short poems.

Also LING 500

Graduate Seminars
Medieval Lit
Term: Fall
Professor: Jessica Brantley
T 9:25am-11:15am

The course offers a contextual study of four of the greatest (and most enigmatic) Middle English poems—Pearl, Patience, Cleanness, and Sir Gawain and the Green Knight. At its center is British Library MS Cotton Nero A.x, the single medieval book that contains them all. In addition to reading the poems closely in their manuscript context, we examine associated artworks, from the twelve illustrations in the Cotton MS, to St. Erkenwald, a poem preserved elsewhere that some argue was written by the same author. Finally, we think about the modern reception of the poems through a serious engagement with scholarly debate surrounding them, and also through comparative work with translations.

Also ENGL 401

Graduate Seminars
Medieval Lit
Hu
Term: Fall
Professor: David Quint, Professor: Jane Tylus
Th 1:30pm-3:20pm

This course looks at Renaissance epic poetry in relationship to classical models and as a continuing generic tradition. It examines epic type scenes, formal strategies, and poetic architecture. It looks at themes of exile and imperial foundations, aristocratic ideology, and the role of gender. The main readings are drawn from Vergil’s Aeneid, Lucan’s De bello civili, Dante’s Purgatorio, Tasso’s Gerusalemme liberata, Camões’s Os Lusíadas, and Spenser’s Faerie Queene.

Also CPLT 684, ITAL 720, RNST 684

Graduate Seminars
Renaissance Lit
Term: Fall
Professor: Kathryn James
F 9:25am-11:15am

This course provides a detailed introduction to early modern English paleography and manuscript cultures. The primary objective is for students to acquire fluency in reading the main English hands encountered in the early modern archive. Students become familiar with the documentary forms and methods of production of early modern British manuscripts and with the techniques and terms by which these are understood and described. Topics include Anglicana, secretary, chancery, and italic hands; alphabets; writing techniques; abbreviations; numbers; shorthand and cipher; transcription; the forms and vocabulary associated with early modern letters, sermon-notes, diaries, annotations, inventories, and other documentary forms. The course meets in the Beinecke Library and is based on the library’s early modern English manuscript collections.

Also HIST 613

Graduate Seminars
Renaissance Lit
Term: Fall
Professor: Lawrence Manley
W 3:30pm-5:20pm

A study of the representation of history on the English stage in the reigns of Elizabeth I and James I. Plays by Shakespeare, Marlowe, Peele, Heywood, Ford, and others in relation to both nondramatic forms of historical writing and contemporary affairs.

Graduate Seminars
Renaissance Lit
Term: Fall
Professor: Leslie Brisman
MW 11:35am-12:50pm

Introduction to the work of Blake, Coleridge, Wordsworth, Shelley, and Keats, with some attention to Byron, to the poets’ own problematic revisions, and to the minor poets of this rich period of poetic innovation and revolutionary spirit.

Graduate students would participate in the seminar with undergraduates, but also have some opportunities to explore in sessions exclusive to them (as well as in essays) the rich critical tradition and its most recent configurations. How many such sessions we would have would depend on the number of students interested.

Also ENGL 250

Graduate Seminars
18/19 C Lit
WR, Hu
Term: Fall
Professor: Marta Figlerowicz, Professor: Jonathan Kramnick
W 1:30pm-3:20pm

What is literary theory today, and what is its history? The aim of the course is to introduce students to central concepts in theory and explore their relation to method. We examine the variety of approaches available within the field of literary studies, including older ones such as Russian formalism, New Criticism, deconstruction, Marxism, and psychoanalysis, as well as newer ones like actor-network theory and digital humanities research. We explore the basic tenets and histories of these theories in a way that is both critical and open-minded, and discuss their comparative advantages and pitfalls. The focus is on recurrent paradigms, arguments, and topics, and on transhistorical relations among our various schools of literary-theoretical thought. Readings might include work by René Wellek, Paul de Man, Jacques Derrida, Gayatri Spivak, Bruno Latour, Judith Butler, Northrop Frye, Fred Moten, and many others.

Also CPLT 881, WGSS 960

Graduate Seminars
20/21 C Lit
Term: Fall
Professor: Ben Glaser
T 1:30pm-3:20pm

This course explores current debates in poetics, historicism, and formalism through study of the poetry and criticism of the past century. We trace a history of the discipline by way of the poets and readers who helped make literary study what it is and isn’t. Special attention is paid to contemporary debates surrounding lyric theory, historical poetics, and recent models of “New Formalism” as they each converge with and diverge from earlier formalisms (e.g., New Criticism) and react against historicisms (e.g., cultural studies). We also explore the racial formations at work within the logic of poetic genres and the canons of twentieth-century poetry.

Graduate Seminars
20/21 C Lit
Term: Fall
Professor: Sunny Xiang
M 3:30pm-5:20pm

What might it mean to think from a position other to the “Western humanities”? This course takes the “Asian inhumanities” as neither a direct opposite nor even a direct challenge to the “Western humanities,” but as a heuristic device for self-conscious reflection about critical method, racial formation, knowledge production, and political action. The aim is not necessarily to decenter the human or the humanities—I suspect that we will talk a good deal about both. Rather, we juxtapose “Asia” to “human” with an openness to contemplating the idiosyncrasies that each reveals about the other. We start by surveying how scholars have posited “Asia as method” (to borrow Kuan-Hsing Chen’s formulation). From there, we pursue the “Asian inhumanities” in two movements. The first examines historically specific “inhuman” typologies (that is, stereotypes) arising from U.S.-Asian encounters: the yellow peril during the era of Asian exclusion, the model minority during the era of Asian inclusion, and the flexible citizen during the era of Asian globalization. The second tracks the relation between “Asian” and “human” at especially fraught scenes of contact: law, war, gender, biology, and technology. Finally, we approach the “Asian inhumanities” as a question of race-based politics, both within and beyond the university. What is at stake in taking the human as a political, ethical, and literary reference point—for example, in desiring well developed and emotionally nuanced characters or even in reading for character at all? How does race figure into alternative critical approaches circulating within the humanities—for example, surface reading, distant reading, new formalism, and weak theory? How does an attention to what is “Asian” impact our received critical frameworks for analyzing race?

Also AMST 840

Graduate Seminars
20/21 C Lit
Term: Fall
Professor: Heather Klemann
Training for graduate students teaching introductory expository writing. Students plan a course of their own design on a topic of their own choosing, and they then put theories of writing instruction into practice by teaching a writing seminar.
 
Prerequisite: open only to graduate students teaching ENGL 114.
Graduate Seminars
Term: Fall

Designed to help fill gaps in students programs when there are corresponding gaps in the department’s offerings. By arrangement with faculty and with the approval of the DGS.

Open to current students in the English graduate programs. Submit a completed Directed Reading Proposal Form to the department registrar by the end of the first week of classes.

Graduate Seminars
Term: Spring , Term: Fall