Academic Writing Courses

Below are the course descriptions for the English courses offered for Fall 2022. Click the course title to read the full description and see the book list for each course. 

EN 1000 Sections

EN 1000 A – PEOPLE MOVE with STAFF

Tues/Wed/Fri | 10:35-11:55

We change homes, schools, jobs or sometimes countries. We leave one neighborhood, city, region or country for another, and in so doing we confront new habits, traditions, cultures and languages. We move into worlds that welcome, worlds that ignore, worlds that reject, or worlds that show indifference. One place may feel suddenly foreign, while another feels like home. Personal journeys take place during these moves, creating life stories. In this course we will contemplate these life stories and the implications of personal journeys on individual and collective experience and identity. Based on films and readings, we will experiment with academic, journalistic and creative writing, always working towards developing your own voice in written and spoken English. 

Book List:

  • Kapuscinski, Ryszard, The Shadow of the Sun
  • Otsuka, Julie, When the Emperor was Divine 
  • Additional readings and films

EN 1010 Sections

EN 1010 A – MAN’S JOURNEY INTO HIMSELF with Professor Mott

Mon/Thurs | 12:10-13:30

This semester’s literature and films delve into the psychological depths of man’s capacity for inhumanity as seen through the evils of colonialism and imperialism:  from Europe’s rushed scramble for Africa in 1890 and America’s capitalistic agenda war in Vietnam in 1960 to the social consequences on post-colonial Africa and France and on Vietnam Veterans returning ‘home.’  Each of our protagonists must meet head-on his fears of failure, insanity, death and cultural contamination.  No one sustains their journey with their moral perspective intact. Each ends a changed man, vastly isolated in his newly acquired knowledge of ‘the Horror, the Horror.” 

EN 1010 B – TBA

Tuesday/Friday 12:10-13:30

By engaging with major works of World Literature across genres, time-periods and cultures, you will be able to read critically, recognise historical contexts, and craft well-structured academic arguments in oral and written form. All EN1010 classes help you fulfil the “Critical Inquiry and Expression” core curriculum requirement.  

EN 1010 C – OVERSTEPPING with Professor Hollinshead-Strick

Mon/Thurs | 9:00-10:20

The works we will read this semester negotiate the boundaries of what is acceptable in the societies and situations they portray. Many of them describe transgressions which are cosmically (and/or personally) destabilizing.  In this course, we will be paying attention to how literature represents and upsets world views. We will consider both the contexts in which it does so and the textual strategies involved in managing readers’ expectations.  Close reading will be encouraged, and we will work extensively on the skills involved in constructing strong academic papers. 

Book list:

  • Aeschylus, Oresteia 
  • Shakespeare, Macbeth 
  • Shelley, Frankenstein 
  • Danticat, Everything Inside
EN 1010 D – THE CREATIVE SELF with Professor Martz

Mon/Thurs | 3:20-16:40

However pleasurable we may find them, the creative arts require discipline, focus, and commitment to achieve excellence. How do people fall in love with their art? What pushes them to make the sacrifices necessary to excel in creative fields? What does it mean to make art if what you want to express with it challenges the values of your community? The texts for this course explore the motivations of artists, dancers, musicians and actors with fiction set in a variety of contexts, from post-war Japan to 19th century Denmark to contemporary Brooklyn, and by a range of creator protagonists including Afro-Caribbean Londoners, Soviet Kyrgyz villagers, and a Hassidic Jew. Readings include Margaret Atwood, Stone Mattress; Zadie Smith, Swing Time; Kazuo Ishiguro, An Artist of the Floating World; Chaim Potok, My Name is Asher Lev; Chingiz Aitmantov, Jamilia, and Kevin Wilson, The Family Fang

Book list:

  • Kazuo Ishiguro, An Artist of the Floating World
  • Chingiz Aitmantov, Jamilia
  • Chaim Potok, My Name is Asher Lev
  • Zadie Smith, Swing Time
EN 1010 E – TBA

Mon/Thurs | 10:35-11:55

By engaging with major works of World Literature across genres, time-periods and cultures, you will be able to read critically, recognise historical contexts, and craft well-structured academic arguments in oral and written form. All EN1010 classes help you fulfil the “Critical Inquiry and Expression” core curriculum requirement.  

EN 1010 F – Empathy and Strangeness with Professor Harding
EN 1010 G – OVERSTEPPING with Professor Hollinshead-Strick
EN 1010 H – THE CREATIVE SELF with Professor Martz
EN 1010 I – INTOXICATION with Professor Williams
EN 1010 J – IDEAS OF THE OTHER with Professor Tresilian

EN 2020 Sections

EN 2020 A – NORMALITY & TRANSGRESSION with Professor Harding

Tues/Fri | 9:00-10:20

Notions of what is normal and what is abnormal are at the heart of our experience of reading, as of our experience of the world. To what extent transgression, the violation of laws, is a necessary component of ‘original’ experience, to what extent it remains outside what we think we desire, or should desire, are central components of the texts on our course. We begin with Homer’s epic of human identity, where transgression metamorphoses into a mode of fate as the human world defines itself in centrifugal translations through time and space, with "powers to draw a man to ruin.” Carroll’s classic exploration of the limits of “normality” in Wonderland, lived through the eyes of a young girl, leads us to the Japanese “heart of things” in one of the world’s great novels of the inner life, Soseki’s Kokoro. We read two English feminist writers on the intensely repressive or liberating experience of transgression, in May Sinclair’s miniature Life and Death of Harriett Frean, and Woolf’s transgender, transhistorical fantasy Orlando. We go to Nigeria, to Amos Tutuola’s tale The Palm Wine Drinkard that scandalized the normalizing literary establishment in the postcolonial transition, and end with the deceptively casual freedoms of the great American poet Frank O’Hara.

Book list:

  • Homer, The Odyssey
  • Lewis Carroll, Alice in Wonderland
  • Natsume Soseki, Kokoro
  • May Sinclair, Life and Death of Harriett Frean
  • Virginia Woolf, Orlando
  • Amos Tutuola, The Palm Wine Drinkard
  • Frank O’Hara, Selected Poems
EN 2020 B – LITERATURE AND THE ENVIRONMENT with Professor Dennis

Mon/Thurs | 15:20-16:40

What relevance might literature have to today’s climate crisis? We can probe the connection by means of two questions: 1) How might literature offer narratives that jerk us out of complacency, bring climate disaster into focus, and spur us to action? 2) How might literature help us reimagine relations between humans and the environment, urging us to live differently? From Ovid’s compendium of myths, many of which attribute sentience to the natural world, to Beckett’s portrayal of a human body neck-deep in the earth under a scorching sun, our readings interrogate the relationship between humans and our natural and built environments. Other readings include a 2021 novel set during a performance of Happy Days as wildfires rage in Australia, an Argentinian science fiction novella that explores technology’s dream of immortality, and Octavia Butler’s 1993 novel demonstrating ties between climate change and social inequality. This is not a course on dystopia, nor does it venture into climate policy; rather, our aim is to read and discuss texts that explore the human capacity for change, dynamism, adaptation, and ultimately survival

Book list:

  • Samuel Beckett, Happy Days, Faber & Faber  
  • Claire Thomas, The Performance, W&N  
  • Ovid, Metamorphoses, trans. David Raeburn, Penguin Classics  
  • Adolfo Bioy Casares, The Invention of Morel, trans. Suzanne Jill Levine, NYRB Classics 
  • Shakespeare, The Tempest, Penguin Classics 
  • Octavia Butler, The Parable of the Sower 
EN 2020 C – LITERATURE AND QUEERNESS with Professor Dwibedy

Mon/Thurs | 16:55-18:15

In this course we will read several texts through the lenses of inclusion and queerness. The texts we will explore propose new kinds of friendships, empathetic relationships, and creative alliances between each other and with nature. They also suggest new approaches to the connections between author, self, and text. Our critical reading will focus on the language, images, and styles employed to express such novel relationships in literary texts, and through independent research we will gain a contextual understanding of the social and political climate of the time during which texts were written. We will also pay particular attention to the relations between form and content in these texts. How does the inclusion of stories from the margins of gender, society, or history influence the form in which these stories are told? Through our readings we will discover how literary experimentation has enabled a broader range of modes of being in relationship with each other. 

Book list:

  • Plato, Symposium
  • Sappho/Anne Carson, If Not, Winter 
  • Oscar Wilde, Picture Of Dorian Gray 
  • Virigina Woolf, Orlando
  • James Baldwin, Goivanni’s Room
  • Ocean Vuong, On Earth We Are Briefly Gorgeous
EN 2020 D – LITERATURE AND QUEERNESS with Professor Dwibedy

Mon/Thurs |12 :10 – 13 :30

 

In this course we will read several texts through the lenses of inclusion and queerness. The texts we will explore propose new kinds of friendships, empathetic relationships, and creative alliances between each other and with nature. They also suggest new approaches to the connections between author, self, and text. Our critical reading will focus on the language, images, and styles employed to express such novel relationships in literary texts, and through independent research we will gain a contextual understanding of the social and political climate of the time during which texts were written. We will also pay particular attention to the relations between form and content in these texts. How does the inclusion of stories from the margins of gender, society, or history influence the form in which these stories are told? Through our readings we will discover how literary experimentation has enabled a broader range of modes of being in relationship with each other. 

Book list:

  • Plato, Symposium
  • Sappho/Anne Carson, If Not, Winter 
  • Oscar Wilde, Picture Of Dorian Gray 
  • Virigina Woolf, Orlando
  • James Baldwin, Goivanni’s Room
  • Ocean Vuong, On Earth We Are Briefly Gorgeous
EN 2020 E – TBA

By engaging with major works of World Literature across genres, time-periods and cultures, you will be able to sharpen your critical reading skills, compare historical contexts, and craft independent, well-researched academic arguments in oral and written form. All EN2020 classes help you fulfil the “Critical Inquiry and Expression” core curriculum requirement.  

EN 2020 F – TBA

By engaging with major works of World Literature across genres, time-periods and cultures, you will be able to sharpen your critical reading skills, compare historical contexts, and craft independent, well-researched academic arguments in oral and written form. All EN2020 classes help you fulfil the “Critical Inquiry and Expression” core curriculum requirement.  

EN 2020 G – TBA

Tues/Fri |12:10-13:30

By engaging with major works of World Literature across genres, time-periods and cultures, you will be able to sharpen your critical reading skills, compare historical contexts, and craft independent, well-researched academic arguments in oral and written form. All EN2020 classes help you fulfil the “Critical Inquiry and Expression” core curriculum requirement.  

EN 2020 H – QUESTIONING THE SELF with Professor Tresilian

Tues/Fri | 10:35-11:55

‘What a piece of work is a man. How noble in reason. How infinite in faculty. In form and moving how express and admirable. In action how like an angel. In apprehension how like a god.’ Hamlet’s words from Shakespeare’s play express optimism about human possibilities, ironically placing them in the mouth of one of the dramatist’s most self-conflicted protagonists. This course will look at a range of works with such self-questioning in mind. Who am I? What am I? What kinds of relationship do I have with others? Even with myself? It starts with Antigone, a work of ancient Greek tragedy having much to say about social and moral bonds. Hamlet introduces the liberal themes of self and society, separating private conscience from public roles and the range of selves presented to others. Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein, written against the background of the Industrial Revolution in Europe and the growth of the factory system, poses the question of human possibilities anew, this time in terms of scientific discovery. Freud’s Fragment of an Analysis of a Case of Hysteria and Woolf’s Room of One’s Own present new ways of writing about the self, whether in terms of psychoanalysis or against the background of political and social change, while Nausea by Jean-Paul Sartre examines the predicament of the individual in a world characterized by endemic bad faith.

Book list:

  • Sophocles, Theban Plays
  • Mary Shelley, Frankenstein 
  • William Shakespeare, Hamlet 
  • Virginia Woolf, A Room Of One's Own 
  • Tayeb Salih, Season of Migration to the North 
  • Sigmund Freud, Complete Psychological Works, Volume Seven.
EN 2020 I – NORMALITY & TRANSGRESSION with Professor Harding

Tues/Fri | 10:35-11:55

Notions of what is normal and what is abnormal are at the heart of our experience of reading, as of our experience of the world. To what extent transgression, the violation of laws, is a necessary component of ‘original’ experience, to what extent it remains outside what we think we desire, or should desire, are central components of the texts on our course. We begin with Homer’s epic of human identity, where transgression metamorphoses into a mode of fate as the human world defines itself in centrifugal translations through time and space, with "powers to draw a man to ruin.” Carroll’s classic exploration of the limits of “normality” in Wonderland, lived through the eyes of a young girl, leads us to the Japanese “heart of things” in one of the world’s great novels of the inner life, Soseki’s Kokoro. We read two English feminist writers on the intensely repressive or liberating experience of transgression, in May Sinclair’s miniature Life and Death of Harriett Frean, and Woolf’s transgender, transhistorical fantasy Orlando. We go to Nigeria, to Amos Tutuola’s tale The Palm Wine Drinkard that scandalized the normalizing literary establishment in the postcolonial transition, and end with the deceptively casual freedoms of the great American poet Frank O’Hara.

Book list:

  • Homer, The Odyssey
  • Lewis Carroll, Alice in Wonderland
  • Natsume Soseki, Kokoro
  • May Sinclair, Life and Death of Harriett Frean
  • Virginia Woolf, Orlando
  • Amos Tutuola, The Palm Wine Drinkard
  • Frank O’Hara, Selected Poems
EN 2020 M – TBA

By engaging with major works of World Literature across genres, time-periods and cultures, you will be able to sharpen your critical reading skills, compare historical contexts, and craft independent, well-researched academic arguments in oral and written form. All EN2020 classes help you fulfil the “Critical Inquiry and Expression” core curriculum requirement.