ENGL 115 Sections

Fall 2023 Sections

01. Children and Books. MW 11.35-12.50

Jill Campbell

Description to come. Also EDST 115.

02. Hearing the African Diaspora. MW 2.30-3.45

Rasheed Tazudeen

For, while the tale of how we suffer, and how we are delighted, and how we may triumph is never new, it always must be heard. There isn’t any other tale to tell; it’s the only light we’ve got in all this darkness.

And this tale, according to that face, that body, those strong hands on those strings, has another aspect in every country, and a new depth in every generation.

                                                            —James Baldwin, “Sonny’s Blues” (1957)

This course explores the sonic histories, traces, inscriptions, archives, and counter-archives of the African diaspora, broadly and intergenerationally considered. We will pay close attention to the ethical and aesthetic demands that sound poses for literary representation, as well as to the excesses, ruptures, and fugitivities of sound in the literary text, especially as these intersect with questions of race, gender, and cultural identity. And we will listen carefully to literary and poetic expressions of Black sound, Black musicking, and Black joy in and as the making of (another) modernity, or what philosopher Alexander Weheliye calls a “sonic Afro-modernity.” Central to this course, following along the paths opened by Daphne Brooks in Liner Notes to the Revolution, are the histories, legacies, and imaginaries of Black women authors, musicians, and feminist thinkers, as “the progenitors of sonic forms, aesthetics, and strategies, as well as ideas about the sonic that have destabilized and reordered our sensorial and expressive lives.” Readings will include works by James Baldwin, Dionne Brand, Yaa Gyasi, Saidiya Hartman, Zora Neale Hurston, Claude McKay, Ishmael Reed, Maboula Soumahoro, and Sylvia Wynter.

03. Comedies of Manners. TTh 1.00-2.15

Kate Needham

Description to come.

04. TBA


Description to come.