Graduate Courses 2016-2017

Summer 2016 | Fall 2016 | Spring 2017

Summer 2016

EN 639: Perspectives on Literacy


This course will provide an overview of perspectives on literacy. We will consider definitions of and debates about literacy, histories of literacy, interdisciplinary perspectives, national/civic debates, and the impact of technology and identity on literacy practices.

Fall 2016

EN: 500-001 Special Topics (Linguistics)

CRN# 44937
M 2:00 – 4:30

This Course Description will be added.

EN 523-001: History of the English Language

CRN# 48549
T & R 11:00 – 12:15

This course is an introduction to the external history of the English language along with the study of the accompanying internal changes in structure.

EN 524-001: English Structure & Usage

CRN# 43424
T & R 12:30 – 1:45

This course explores issues and theories about second language development. It focuses on the study of learner language; language learning process; biological, psychological, and social factors affecting the process; and the role of formal instruction in second language development. Where relevant, first, third, and fourth language development issues will also be addressed.

EN 537-001: Introduction to Graduate Studies

CRN# 44723
W 9:00 – 11:30

This is a study of selected bibliographical resources and of some of the important methodological approaches employed in literary study, including an introduction to critical approaches, scholarly writing, and issues in the profession.

EN 539-001: Approaches to Teaching the Sophomore

CRN# 48337
T 12:30 – 1:30

This course is required for all GTAs assigned to teach a 200-level EN survey for the first time. It may be taken concurrently with or in advance of teaching one’s first literature survey, and is typically taken by Ph.D. students in their second year of coursework and by MFA students in their third year of coursework. A grade of “pass” is required for students to teach literature courses in the department of English. Students should expect to meet weekly to discuss practical subjects like how to manage daily discussion, construct exams, assign and grade papers, and otherwise ensure that learning outcomes are being met. Students should also expect to prepare teaching materials for a number of the 200-level surveys and to have those items evaluated for their agreement with the department’s 200-level course guidelines.

EN 601-001: Graduate Prose Workshop

CRN# 42354
M 2:00 – 4:30

This workshop will be given as a HYPOXIC workshop. The writers will contribute work each week for consideration.

EN 603-002: Poetry Workshop

CRN # 46665
T 9:45 – 12:15

Paleontologist and science writer Stephen Jay Gould describes evolution as “a process of constant branching and expansion.” In this course, we will actively evolve poetry, your writing giving way to novel literary creations through conversation with other writers, both living and dead. Texts will include an anthology of contemporary poetry and several related full-length collections.

EN 605-320: Nonfiction Workshop: Writing a Nonfiction Book – Part II

CRN# 47546
M 5:00 – 7:30

In this two-semester course, you will learn how to conceive of and write a book-length work of nonfiction. The first half (Spring 2016) will focus on gathering material, establishing a structure, producing generative writing, and articulating project goals in the form of pitches, query letters, and book proposals. You will be expected to have a topic in mind at the beginning of the course. While the emphasis will be on continuous narrative, students may also write a series of interrelated pieces, so long as the connection between them is clear and the 150-page requirement is met by the end of the second half (Fall 2016). Please contact me if you want to take the second half of the course without having taken the first.

EN 608-001: Special Topics: Cognition & Creativity

CRN# 42355
W 3:30 – 6:00

This course will be co-taught by Prof. Robin Behn in English and Dr. Beverly Roskos-Ewoldsen in Psychology, and is designed for both MFA students in creative writing and PhD students in experimental psychology. From a cognitive standpoint, we’ll examine theories of creativity and their relationship to cognitive processes, and discuss questions such as how the brain processes and produces ideas of different kinds; how the parts of the brain communicate; how the brain processes time, pattern, and surprise; how artists use thinking that is both above and below the level of everyday consciousness; what ways of asking questions stimulate the most creativity; and what goes on in the brain when we read or write. From the creative writer’s point of view, we’ll create literary texts that take advantage of these aspects of cognition. For example, once we understand how the brain processes time, how might we create a text that gives the reader the feeling of time speeding up, slowing down, or seeming to stop? Or, with a better understanding of pattern and surprise, what might we do with syntax, image, or structure in a piece? How might we create a work that gives the reader a sense of easily “seeing through” the text using familiar processing, versus inviting the reader into a sense of noticing language at a variety of levels, or moving in new ways from one kind of thinking to another? Typical weekly reading will be one or two psychological research articles that are accessible to the layperson, and a sampling of poems and prose (some likely authors are Neruda, Stein, Justice, Rankine, Wilbur, Celan, McCrae, Faulkner, Joyce, Willard, Markus, Eliot, Mullen, Jarnot, Gay, Strayed, to name a few). Each week, students will write a 1-2 page reading response to the texts and an original piece of creative writing. Open to MFA students and to other graduate students by permission. MFA students may also register for this as a Psychology course if there is room in the PSY section.

EN 608-002: Forms: Contemporary Rural & Agricultural Literature

CRN# 42359
M 9:45 – 12:15

What is food? What is a farmer? A farm? What is family? Reading a variety of recent works–poetry, fiction, and nonfiction–about rural life and American agriculture that will lead us to attempt answers to these and other pressing existential issues about place, ecology, and nature. There will be field trips as well as occasional writing and a semester project.

EN 608-003: Forms of Writing

CRN# 44939
T 2:00 – 4:30

THE USES OF HISTORY. Henry James, in a scathing 1904 letter to Sarah Orne Jewett, railed against the historical novel, saying that any imaginative interpretation of historical events was “condemned” to “a fatal cheapness,” because it is impossible for an author to represent in fiction “the whole CONSCIOUSNESS, the soul, the sense, the horizon, the vision” of people who lived in an age in which the author did not. This seems like a reasonable charge, and it raises the question of why a creative writer would choose in the first place to base an imaginative text on a historical event or historical characters. Isn’t it the historian’s job to research and explain the facts of history, and the creative writer’s job to invent imaginary events and people? Why would a writer want to burden herself with what James sees as the impossible task of getting “real” history right, when she has the power to simply invent an imaginary histoire of her own? Might imaginative literature have the capacity to express certain historical realities more effectively than traditional historical studies? In what ways might those traditional historical studies themselves be a species of creative writing? In this course, we will investigate the uses of history in imaginative writing (and, to a lesser extent, the uses of the imagination in historical writing), and differences between the past as it is presented in “nonfictional” histories and in imaginative works based upon historical events. We’ll read imaginative works that somehow address a historical era, person, phenomenon, or event; survey some critical essays that examine problems in historiography; and attempt a variety of history-based creative writing exercises ourselves. For a final project, each student will complete a long imaginative work (in any genre) that springs from and/or responds to a historical subject of the student’s choosing. Texts may include works by Isaac Babel, Roberto Bolano, J.M. Coetzee, Martha Collins, Don Delillo, Cornelius Eady, Carolyn Forche, Ha Jin, Herodotus, Henry James, Akira Kurosawa, Rachel Loden, Sarah Messer, Sigrid Nunez, Michael Ondaatje, Julie Otsuka, Gillo Pontecorvo, Muriel Rukeyser, W.G. Sebald, Joseph Skibell, W.D. Snodgrass, Graham Swift, D.M. Thomas, Thucydides, Natasha Tretheway, David Foster Wallace, Hayden White, C.D. Wright, Marguerite Yourcenar. N.B.: MFA students specializing in any genre are welcome. Writing assignments and final projects may be written in any genre.

EN 608-004: The Personal Essay

CRN# 50196
R 2:00 – 4:30

“There’s nothing you can’t do with it,” says Annie Dillard. “No subject matter is forbidden, no structure is prescribed. You get to make up your own form every time.” We’ll investigate how to combine in a single piece expressive and analytical writing, and how to write intimately about the self and yet engage concerns that reach far beyond the self. We’ll read and discuss essays that demonstrate how flexible this form can be. And then we’ll write some.

EN 608-005: The Personal Essay

CRN# 50481
T 2:00 – 4:30

“There’s nothing you can’t do with it,” says Annie Dillard. “No subject matter is forbidden, no structure is prescribed. You get to make up your own form every time.” We’ll investigate how to combine in a single piece expressive and analytical writing, and how to write intimately about the self and yet engage concerns that reach far beyond the self. We’ll read and discuss essays that demonstrate how flexible this form can be. And then we’ll write some.

EN 608-320: Special Topics: All in the (Queer) Family

CRN# 44939
T 5:00 – 7:30

Queer folks have long been creating their own family structures, and in this class we’ll read and watch recent texts in which authors create, imagine, and analyze their chosen families. We’ll imagine new definitions for old roles, and write our way toward understanding how we choose and how we let go. Possible texts include: The Essential Dykes to Watch Out for, The First Bad Man, The Argonauts, Trace Elements of Random Tea Parties, Jam on the Vine, Under the Udala Trees, Returning to Reims, Transparent, and Orphan Black.

EN 609-001: Book Reviewing

CRN# 47929
T 4:45 – 5:45

“That is what the highest criticism really is, the record of one’s own soul. It is more fascinating than history, as it is concerned simply with oneself. It is more delightful than philosophy, as its subject is concrete and not abstract, real and not vague. It is the only civilised form of autobiography, as it deals not with the events, but with the thoughts of one’s life; not with life’s physical accidents of deed or circumstance, but with the spiritual moods and imaginative passions of the mind.” –Oscar Wilde, “The Critic as Artist” (1888). This course’s modest proposal is that criticism is a creative art, or at least can be if you do it right. We will read, analyze, and produce criticism, and discuss publication venues for same. As we go along, we’ll take up a number of questions: What’s criticism for? What’s a book review for? What’s the difference between criticism and book reviews? Is there any money in this? How much, exactly? Oh. And, finally, one for Oscar: How can one’s criticism be a record of one’s own soul if its originating impulse and reason for being is wholly dependent upon someone else’s text? (We’ll see what Socrates has to say about that one.)

EN 609-320: Writers at Work: Form.Theory.Practice. Aspects of Performance

CRN# 47547
W 5:00 – 7:00

This class meets for two hours every other week. The goal of the course is to build confidence and a variety of techniques in reading/performing written work aloud. We’ll practice among ourselves in an encouraging atmosphere and in a group reading at the end of the semester. We’ll attend readings and also partake of recorded readings; we’ll read about the emergence(s) of “the reading” in our culture. We’ll invite a few guests to read for us and/or to talk about performance from their point of view. The course is appropriate both for those new to performing words and those with a substantial background.

EN 609-321: Pedagogy for EN 200

CRN# 48340
R 5:00 – 5:50 The Creative Writing pedagogy practicum required for all MFA students who will be teaching EN 200 for the first time in the fall.

EN 620-001: English Linguistics

CRN# 48341
T 2:00 – 3:15

An introductory linguistics course at the graduate level with relevance for students in the Applied Linguistics/TESOL, literature, composition and rhetoric, and MFA programs, EN 620 provides an overview of the discipline at the same time that it involves students in dealing with language data from field work. In addition to a midterm and final exam, students engage in various activities including a class project that is a multi-faceted discourse analysis of spoken English data through the examination of a story recorded in conversation. Each student will also learn how to construct a website with basic information about a language chosen by the student. In addition to providing experience with the subfields of linguistics (phonology, semantics, syntax, pragmatics), the course includes an introduction to the thought of two key figures in modern linguistics, Ferdinand de Saussure and Noam Chomsky, whose ideas have had wide-ranging influence on intellectual trends in other disciplines.

EN 637-001: Workshop in Academic Writing

CRN# 50197
T 2:00 – 4:30

“Workshop in Academic Writing” is intended for Ph.D. students. It can also serve MA and MFA students who hope to pursue a PhD in any humanistic discipline. A published article will greatly enhance the candidacy of anyone going on the job market or else applying for a Ph.D. program. In this seminar, we will workshop student papers into publishable articles and then submit them to peerreviewed journals. Students’ articles can also serve as “writing samples” for job applications. As we work on articles, students will learn about the research aspect of the profession, i.e. what is the peer review process? How do I select a journal? How do I communicate with editors? What is the status of online journals? How do I interpret readers’ reports?

EN 639-001: Special Topics in Rhetoric & Composition

CRN# 50198
T 3:30 – 6:00

Special Topic: Spatial Rhetoric – Scholarship on rhetoric and literacy has long included place as an influence in language, communication, and identity. Rather than seeing place as one of many influences on rhetorical practices, this course focuses on the study of spatiality within rhetoric and composition studies to understand how spaces affect our shared practices and help us make sense of the built and natural world. This course will survey scholarship in the field that considers place and will integrate this scholarship with work in critical spatial theory. We will also consider the relationships between physical and digital spaces and the role of digital and mobile technologies in understanding and constructing place. This class will use the university as a site of inquiry and students will have the opportunity to collaborate on a digital project that examines and revises the history of university spaces through digital technology.

EN 640-001: Special Topics: Seminar in American Literature

CRN# 48342
T & R 11:00 -12:15

Modernism’s Maturity: The Poets of the1930s “The creator of the new composition in the arts is an outlaw until he is a classic.” – Gertrude Stein, 1926. Course Objectives: Description: In this course we will read closely a range of books by American poets in the 1930’s. Tracing the truncations (Hart Crane), flourishings (Ezra Pound, Marianne Moore, Wallace Stevens), transitions (Robert Frost), and new beginnings (George Oppen) that took place in the1930s will show why it remains one of the most complex and fruitful decades or American poetry of the 20th Century. In seeking to understand how Modernism’s former outlaws became, in that decade, the classics they remain, we will pay close attention to not only the work these poets made, but the material circumstances that surrounded their publication, and the critical prose that shaped their reputations.

EN 648-001: Seminar in African American Literature

CRN# 50199
M 10:00 – 12:30

“African American Literature in the 1980s: Prizes, Politics, and the Power of the Pen” Prize-winning achievements distinguished the decade of the 1980s for African American writers. Alice Walker won the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction and the National Book Award for Fiction with The Color Purple (1982). For her neo-slave narrative Beloved (1987), Toni Morrison was a finalist for the National Book Award in 1987 and won the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction and the American Book Award in 1988, which presaged her being awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1993. J. California Cooper won the American Book Award for Homemade Love, her 1986 collection of short fiction. Charles Fuller won several awards for A Soldier’s Play—the 1981 Drama Critics’ Circle Award for Best American Play, the 1982 Outer Critics Circle Award for Best Off-Broadway Play, and the 1982 Pulitzer Prize for Drama. August Wilson pocketed his first Pulitzer Prize for Drama with Fences (1986), which also won the Tony Award for Best Play; Wilson duplicated the Pulitzer feat with The Piano Lesson in 1990. Rita Dove won the Pulitzer Prize in Poetry for Thomas and Beulah (1986) and was appointed Poet Laureate Consultant in Poetry to the Library of Congress (1993). EN 648 will focus on several of these prize-winning works as well as selections from the following: Toni Cade Bambara, The Salt Eaters (1980; novel); David Bradley, The Chaneysville Incident (1981; novel); Audre Lorde, The Cancer Journals (1980; essays); Ernest Gaines, A Gathering of Old Men (1983; novel); John Edgar Wideman, Brothers & Keepers (1984; life narrative); James Baldwin, The Evidence of Things Not Seen (1985; essays); Shirley Anne Williams, Dessa Rose (1986; novel); Octavia E. Butler, Dawn (1987; novel); Yusef Komunyakaa, Dien Cai Dau (1988; poetry); Gloria Naylor, Mama Day (1988; novel); Randall Kenan, A Visitation of Spirits (1989; novel). Students will be expected to assume partial responsibility for leading one of the seminar discussions, to participate actively and constructively in all class discussions, to complete an annotated bibliography on one of the writers (8-10 items), and to complete a longer research paper (around 25 pages) for possible publication.

EN 652-001: Theories of Teaching Composition

CRN# 50200
W 10:00 – 12:30

This course will provide an overview of the major theories and philosophical underpinnings informing the fields of rhetoric/composition studies. We will discuss major assumptions in the field, current pressing debates and more recent theoretical developments as they pertain to the composition classroom and specific pedagogical activities. Required texts may include work by James Berlin, Ann Berthoff, Stephen North, Patricia Bizzell, Lester Faigley, Hephzibah Roskelly, Victor Villanueva, Mary Louise Pratt, John Clifford, and John Schilb, among others. Oral reports, weekly responses, and a seminar-length research paper will be required.

EN 653-001: Research Methodology

CRN# 50201
R 3:30 – 6:00

In this course, we’ll explore how researchers go about designing their projects and selecting methodologies that best address their research questions. We’ll engage research less as a definitive way to answer certain questions, and more as an approach to developing and elaborating those questions. As such, research isn’t something that scholars or teachers do in isolation, but rather a way of contributing to and intervening in disciplinary conversations. We will also consider the ethical and professional implications of developing and conducting research projects, including online research. The institutional requirements, planning and preparation, and data collection and management components of scholarly research can require close attention to detail and compliance procedures. This course includes hands-on institutional training activities, exploration of ethical research practices, and approaches to collecting, managing and coding data, as well as scholarly reading, lecture, discussion, and scholarly writing.

EN 665-001: Medieval Elizabethan Drama

CRN# 50202
R 2:00 – 4:30

This Course Description will be added.

EN 668-001: Seminar in Renaissance Literature III

CRN# 45748
T 3:30 – 6:00

Literature of Faith and Love / This seminar will feature an intensive look at the poetry of several major seventeenth-century writers, with an emphasis on how these writers approach the twinned concepts of faith and love. Our discussions will also focus on how to teach undergraduates to read early modern poetry closely. Authors include Donne, Herbert, Lanyer, Milton, and Marvell.

EN 683-001: Seminar in Romantic Literature

CRN# 50203
M & W 4:30 – 5:45

Wordsworth and Coleridge: Philosophy and Poetic Form – Simon Jarvis’s trailblazing Wordsworth’s Philosophic Song (2007) reinvigorated and reoriented critical discussions of poetic form in British Romantic poetry. In this course, we will study the major canonical poetry of Wordsworth and Coleridge and examine the history of formalist readings of these works. How do the works of Jarvis, Ewan James Jones, Ruth Abbott, and other prominent or rising scholars interested in poetic form differ from the much-maligned New Criticism and from the formalism that countered the New Historicism in the 1990s? What are the strengths and limits of these different approaches? Texts will include the Lyrical Ballads, Coleridge’s conversation poems, selections from the 1797 Poems, “Kubla Khan,” and Christabel, and selections from Wordsworth’s 1807 Poems, in Two Volumes and The Prelude.

EN 693-001: Seminar in Postcolonial Literature

CRN# 50204
H 3:30 – 6:00

The course is particularly interested in the areas of the Global South where histories of colonialism, conquest, and globalization have fundamentally altered the local spaces. Our explorations will be particularly concerned with the representations of non-Western ecologies in literary narratives. Some of the environmental questions that these texts examine include pollution caused by extractive industries such as in the Niger Delta. Others are the questions of the nonhumans in these spaces, and the environmental change brought about by development. Through close readings informed by the specific contexts of emanation, we will examine texts by Zakes Mda, Bessie Head, Amitash Ghosh, Jamaica Kincaid, Derek Walcott, among others. In addition to an interest in these environmental problems, the course will be concerned with the narrative strategies employed by these authors to illuminate their thematic concerns. We will begin by engaging with the question of postcolonial literature and its parameters, and return to these throughout the semester as we read the novels. The selection of secondary materials is meant to illuminate the theoretical contours of environmental literary criticism and theory, especially, from a postcolonial and/or global perspective. Based on geographical considerations, the course work is divided into three units. In the first, we will consider African ecologies in their complexity from colonial through post-colonial times. In the unit on the Caribbean, we will explore the transformations of the landscape from slavery, through colonialism, and the contemporary era. Turning to Asian spaces in the third unit, we will explore changes brought about by globalization and the effects on both humans and nonhumans. In no way is this meant to be a comprehensive treatment of these regions but a working rubric to contextualize and organize the currents of spaces and themes we will engage with.

Spring 2017

EN 500-001: Anatomy of a Bestseller

CRN #13210
R 2:00 – 4:30 PM

What makes a novel a bestseller? Is it memorable characters? A scintillating subject matter? Daring descriptions? A masterful plot? In order to answer these questions this seminar will work to assemble the ‘bag of tricks’ many authors use in creating narratives that resonate with both the reader and the market. Of particular interest will be the distinctions between audiences (national vs. international) and registers (high vs. low). For example, what is the difference between ‘literary’ and ‘mass-paperback’ bestsellers? Are all bestsellers just hard-boiled detective novels? What makes a bestseller ‘high-brow’? Readings will range from classic narrative theorists like Vladimir Propp and Roland Barthes, to spy thrillers by Ian Fleming and to National Book Critics Circle and Man Booker Prize selections. As our compelling case in point, this seminar will feature Umberto Eco’s international bestseller, The Name of the Rose, dissecting it with our readings on narrative theory in order to sketch the anatomy of a bestseller. **Note: This is a Digital Humanities seminar, which means we will use digital technologies (WordPress, annotation and visualization software, etc.) to critically think.

EN 500-002 (AMS-592): History of Sexuality in America

CRN #13426
R 9:00 AM – 12:00 PM

This seminar examines the ways in which sexual attitudes, desires, acts, identities, and communities have been shaped and reshaped over time. We range chronologically from preconquest Native American cultures through the age of AIDS, focusing on nineteenth and twentieth century ideas about gender identity, sexual orientation, familial structures, and political movements, with a particular emphasis on queer theory and history. The class questions traditional conceptions of history, the historical profession, and historical methodology, in an attempt to understand the varied ideologies and theoretical foundations that shape historical projects, as well as the political agendas they serve. For us, history will be understood not as static, finite, and ultimately knowable, but rather as shifting, contingent, and open to scrutiny.

EN 500-003 (FR 511-001 & RL 557-001): Critical Theory—Research Methodology

CRN #20235
R 3:30 – 6:00 PM

This gradaute course serves as a general introduction to trends in critical theory. It offers a combination of research methodologies, theory and practice; an application of various approaches; a verification of acceptability of research perspectives and procedures. Students are to examine various schools of criticism and theory and apply them to their own text analysis. Critical thinking is being developed through extensive readings in The Norton Anthology of Theory and Criticism (second edition). Weekly in-class discussions based on readings prepare students for the final project (oral and written), based on the application of various theories and critical approaches to a chosen text.

EN 523-001: History of the English Language

CRN# 18170
TR 11:00 AM – 12:15 PM

This course is an introduction to the external history of the English language along with the study of the accompanying internal changes in structure. It considers questions such as the following: Why does Southern English have to propose “y’all” for a plural “you”? And while we’re at it, what happened to “thou”? What’s the deal with the subjunctive? How did Scandinavian pronouns (they, their, them) creep into English? Why can’t we ask “Have you not heard?” without sounding weird? Who decided that we can’t say “Ain’t nothin’ like ‘em nowhere” in standardized English? Since 1066 was called “the Norman Conquest,” why aren’t we speaking French instead of English? What’s going on with, like, quotatives, “and he was like….! “? Why can’t everybody open their book? How is English being affected by globalization and the internet?

EN 525-001: Variation in American English (Dialectology)

CRN# 14748
TR 2:00 – 3:15 PM

This course deals with the study of the experience of the English language in America, with particular emphasis on its development and dialects. We’ll explore differences in accent, vocabulary, grammar, and patterns of language use among people from across the United States. We’ll look at how dialect differences developed, reflect on how language is a part of our identity, and consider the consequences of linguistic stereotyping, both positive and negative.

EN 534: Practicum in Teaching College English 102

Various Instructors (see end of description)
TR 12:30 – 1:30 PM

This is offered Spring semester ONLY. Required of all graduate assistants teaching EN 102 for the first time. Training in reaching EN 102 course goals and writing outcomes. Further instruction in teaching formal argumentation and advanced research techniques.

534-001 CRN# 12883 — Robinson – 534-101 CRN# 20236

534-002 CRN# 15039 – Niiler – 534-102 CRN# 20237

534-003 CRN# 16064 – Kidd – 534-103 CRN# 20238

534-004 CRN# 18171 – Loper – 534-104 CRN# 20239

Must simultaneously register for Thursday session with same lecture instructor.

EN 535-001: Literary Criticism

CRN# 20240
T 2:00 – 4:30 PM

This course offers an introduction to the history of translation practices through a study of critical essays from Jerome and John Dryden to Walter Benjamin and Vladimir Nabokov and through comparative analysis of English-language translations. Class time will be divided between analysis of theoretical writing and evaluative discussion of competing English-language translations. This course will demonstrate that the history of English-language literature is a history of translation, that it owes its development to the efforts of translators, many of them invisible. One of the purposes of the course is to make students aware of the central issues in the burgeoning field of translation studies, including the social and economic factors that come into play whenever we ferry texts between languages, cultures, and eras. The methods and procedures that we study will lead to discussion about gender, poetics, ideology, class, and 3 nationhood. We will devote particular attention to the changing valences of the key concept of equivalence. Over the course of the semester we will explore the practice and consequences of literary translation, learning about the role translations play in the interpretation and consecration of literature. What gets translated? Who translates it? How do they translate? Students complete the course with a traditional paper or else with a translation.

EN 601-001: Graduate Fiction Workshop

CRN# 14827
M 2:00 – 4:30 PM

Enrollment is limited to students in the MFA program. Focus will be on discussion of original student writing; other reading and writing may be assigned.

EN 601-002: Novel Workshop

CRN# 20241
T 2:00 – 4:30 PM

This class is intended for students enrolled in the MFA Program in Creative Writing and is the first course in a two-semester graduate workshop concentrating on the study of the long form, and the research, preparation, and writing of a novel.

EN 603-01: Graduate Poetry Workshop

CRN# 10983
R 2:00 – 4:30 PM

This is a workshop course, and the majority of our time will be spent discussing the poems you write. However, on the theory that lively reading can aid and abet lively writing, we will also read and discuss poetry and criticism by others. This course is open to MFA students. Other interested graduate students must submit a sample of 5-7 pages of poetry to the Director of the MFA Program well before pre-registration to be considered for admission.

EN 605-320: Non Fiction Workshop

CRN# 18172
M 5:00 – 7:30 PM

In this workshop, your goal will be to understand how you make decisions while writing nonfiction. Where is your ego appearing on the page? How are you contorting your writing around a piece of missing information? And what’s truly the best approach to the story? You’ll learn to understand the positive and negative accommodations you’re making for yourself, develop the discipline it takes to keep writing through earthquakes (or even parties), and have a record to return to when memory fails. To get there, you’ll read exemplary nonfiction texts, write and submit a substantial amount of nonfiction, reflect upon your process, and offer feedback to your peers.

EN 608-001: The Elegy: Negotiating, Loss, Faith(lessness) & Desire

CRN# 18173
R 9:45 AM – 12:15 PM

“It does many things. It distracts the poet, at least momentarily, from a state of exquisite grief,” Mary Jo Bang says of the ancient form that gave her fifth collection, written in the wake of her son’s death, its name. In this course, we will read Bang’s 2007 collection alongside historical and contemporary works—both first books and mid-career “reboots”—from Lucille Clifton, Natalie Diaz, Tarfia Faizullah, Ross Gay, Rachel Eliza Griffiths, Galway Kinnell, Sharon Olds, Ocean Vuong, Phillip B. Williams, C.D. Wright, and others, dating to Rainer Maria Rilke’s “Duino Elegies” and “Book 4 of Hours.” We’ll revisit essays on the form by poets and critics alike, including those of Jahan Ramazani, Max Cavitch, Andrea Mellard, Fred Moten, Jasbir Puar, and Carl Phillips. We will examine poets’ ways of interrogating the divine, questioning belief itself, and finding something (or someone) to live for amid staggering loss as we write through our own personal valences on suffering.

EN 608-002: Fabulist Fiction

CRN# 18174
W 2:00 – 4:30 PM

This course is devoted to the study of fabulist fiction, fiction unfettered by empirical reality, fiction in which human beings suddenly sprout wings or begin to shrink, fiction in which apes deliver disquisitions on what it is to be human, fiction set in historical theme parks built according to verisimilitude tips acquired from ghosts, fiction of the supernatural, paranormal, romantic, surreal, metaphysical, the oneiric, unlikely, implausible, the uncanny, the marvelous, fiction in which magic, myth, and dream construct a cosmos at a tilt.

EN 608-003: Left in the Darkness

CRN# 13114
T 9:45 AM – 12:15 PM

LEFT IN THE SHADOWS: “Darkness is your candle,” writes Rumi. In this course, we will wander where darkness leads, asking questions such as: How do writers query darkness as a cultural trope with political implications? What does it mean to write from a “position of darkness”? What is an “aesthetics of opacity”? What forms, styles, and practices might a “shadow poetics” imply? Prompts inviting collage, excision, erasure and other strategies will help writers explore these questions across genres. Texts may include: Forest Primeval, Vivee Francis; Lighting the Shadow, Rachel Eliza Griffiths; Themes of My Kin, Janet Holmes; A Bestiary, Lily Huong; Vanishing Point, David Markson; Night Sky with Exit Wounds, Ocean Vuong, Disobedience; Alice Notley; Dark Museum, María Negroni; excerpts from Dante’s Inferno, Rimbaud’s Season in Hell; “Shadow Feminisms” from The Queer Art of Failure, Judith Halberstam; and Necropastoral, Joyelle McSweeney.

EN 608-004: Teaching Creative Writing

CRN# 10963
W F 4:30 – 6 PM 2:00 – 2:50 PM

Meeting times are both Wednesday 4:30 – 6:00 pm and Friday 2:00 – 2:50 pm. This course is the pedagogical component of the Creative Writing Club (CWC), a Tuscaloosa-wide after school program for high school students. We draw motivated high school writers from a dozen schools in Tuscaloosa and invite them to Morgan Hall on Wednesdays after school to work with us. The CWC will begin its twelfth season this spring. We have had grant support from the Tuscaloosa Arts Council and the Alabama State Council on the Arts. For a sense of what we’ve done in the past, visit We will meet twice each week—once with just the graduate students to organize the club, discuss pedagogy, and design lessons; and once with the high school kids to conduct.

EN 609-001: Pedagogy

CRN# 17465
R 4:30 – 5:30 PM

This class is required for first time instructors of EN 200.

EN 609-321: Academic Job Market

CRN# 20242
W 6:00 – 6:50 PM

This course is devoted to educating you about and preparing you for the academic job market. Letters of application, CVs, dossiers, writing samples, teaching philosophies, interviews, these are the things that will be discussed, practiced, and demystified (somewhat) by this course.

EN 610-001: Theory & Methods of TESOL

CRN# 15038
T 2:00 – 4:30 PM

This course offers an overview of the theoretical bases and practical applications of approaches to Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL). We will cover topics, such as the linguistic, psychological, and social aspects of second language learning, learner motivation, integrated skills teaching, successful teaching principles and strategies, choosing materials, assessment, culture in the classroom, and technology as a classroom resource.

EN 612-001: Topics in Applied Linguistics: Teaching Grammar & Vocabulary

CRN# 15040
M 2:00 – 4:30 PM

Vocabulary and grammar are arguably the two most important parts in language learning. Using contemporary linguistic theories and approaches, such as cognitive/corpus linguistics and construction/pattern grammar, this course explores effective and creative ways of teaching vocabulary and grammar. Via readings and discussions, the class will gain a sound understanding of the new theories and will use them to critically examine lexico-grammatical descriptions and teaching practices in existing language textbooks and reference materials. In addition, students will, individually and collectively (in groups), develop lexico-grammatical teaching activities, exercises, assessment instruments, and lesson plans and share them in class.

EN 617-001: Teaching Academic Language Skills to Non-Native English Speakers

CRN# 14766
W 2:00 – 4:30 PM

This course is a theoretical and pedagogical introduction to the teaching of English academic language skills to adult learners of English with a particular focus on teaching writing in the American university context. We will examine the theories and disciplines that have significantly informed second language writing research and pedagogy. Additionally, we will examine some of the emerging issues in the field of second language writing including such topics as translingual practice, identity and politics second language writing, multilingual creativity, and the increasingly multilingual student population at US universities. We will build on this theoretical foundation to develop skills in a variety of pedagogical practices including needs analysis, course design, assignment design, lesson planning, writing assessment, responding to student writing, and error correction.

EN 639-001: Special Topics in Rhetoric & Composition

CRN# 16670
W 2:00 – 4:30 PM

This special topics graduate course in African American Rhetoric will be taught in traditional seminar format and will explore texts from the African American tradition that are unequivocally rhetorical in that they seek to influence American culture, ideologies, laws, policies, individuals, and society, with African American life and culture in view and are situated within particular 6 social movements: Abolition, Suffrage, Black Arts, Civil Rights, Women’s Rights, and Black Lives Matter. Along with the traditional focus on works of non-fiction within rhetorical studies, we will also explore creative and imaginative texts that are educative, didactic, argumentative, and/or persuasive in nature. Some works explored will come from an African American rhetorical tradition, including but not limited to Gilyard, Nunley, and Royster. Others will focus more on literacy and language practices and will include scholars such as Smitherman, Richardson, and Young. The purpose of the seminar is to heighten student awareness of the variations in African American rhetorical practices and the unique style of African Americans within those traditions.

EN 639-002: Practicum for Teachers of Professional, Technical & Digital Writing

CRN# 20243
W 9:30 AM – 12:00 PM

This course is a teaching practicum for graduate students seeking to be teachers of record of undergraduate Technical Writing, Professional Writing, or Digital Media Composing. This course will explore theories and pedagogies of technical writing, with an emphasis on teacher preparation in the form of syllabi, classroom activities, and student assessment. Students of this course will lead discussion, perform original research, develop course documents, and collaborate with peers.

EN 640-001: Intimacy & Interracial Contact in the Early Americas

CRN# 16694
T 9:45 AM – 12:15 PM

This seminar offers an introduction to the study of early Atlantic literature, that body of texts written in or about those regions bordering the Atlantic Ocean in the 15th – 19th centuries, which would include the Americas, the Caribbean, Africa and Europe. Because the majority of that literature was produced as a consequence of cross-cultural interactions among Native Americans, black Africans, and Europeans, we will examine the extent to which the texts affirm or challenge certain myths of contact regarding the ways in which cultures met, fought, loved, and in other ways negotiated to forge early American landscapes. Specifically, we will read the literature for moments of intimacy and sentimental expression. We will ask ourselves how and why love mattered in the early Americas. And how did bonds of affection – and disaffection – fuel cultural production of the time. The class complements the theme of the English Department’s spring symposium “Black/White Intimacies: Reimagining History, the South, and the Western Hemisphere” to be held April 21 and 22. Assignments include a final seminar paper (or its equivalent) and participation in the department symposium. Readings include Cooper’s Last of the Mohicans, the poetry of Anne Bradstreet and Phillis Wheatley, Behn’s Oroonoko, Shakespeare’s The Tempest, and The Female American. Note: The texts and geographical scope of this seminar mirror the current push in early American studies to think about the literature of the early Americas as product of a wider trans-Atlantic circulation of bodies, social ideas, and economies. Students will be introduced to theoretical frameworks and a range of texts, traditionally labeled as either early

EN 647-001: Seminar in Southern Literature

CRN# 20244
M 10:00 AM – 12:30 PM

One quick look around the campus of UA should confirm that the image of the plantation continues to be a compelling framing device for authentic southern expression. Scholars like 7 Michael Bibler and Patricia Yaeger suggest that an emphasis on plantation culture extends beyond southern architecture, bric-a-brac, or aesthetics and engages with multiple discourses that describe gender and sexuality in the South. This course examines how the plantation framed (and continues to frame through the American cultural imagination) southern sexuality from the mid-19th century well into the 21st. We will be especially interested in the intersection of plantation sexuality and queerness, including sites of queer expression for tomboys, transgression, interracial taboos, effeminacy, and gender/class performance.

EN 654-001: Visual & Digital Rhetoric

CRN# 20245
T 3:30 – 6:00 PM

This seminar focuses on understanding rhetoric in visual and digital texts. This course explores contemporary rhetorical theory connected to visual and digital communication and considers the traditional rhetorical canon (invention, arrangement, style, memory, and delivery) for the digital age. The course readings will explore approaches for analyzing visual and digital texts as well as employing visual and digital methods in rhetoric and composition scholarship.

EN 662-001: Medievalism in the Ante & Postbellum American South (Aka. Middle English Lit Ex Chaucer)

CRN# 20246
W 9:30 AM – 12:00 PM

References to the Middle Ages in ante- and postbellum southern American fiction are legion. A few representative examples are the topos of the plantation owner’s putative gentility as an Anglo-Norman inheritance; fictional reprisals of Virginia’s 1845 staging of a faux-medieval tournament including jousting matches; Mark Twain’s diatribe against Sir Walter Scott and the pernicious influence of Scott’s medievalist novel Ivanhoe on the South; and the “gentle Confederate novels” of Thomas Nelson Page and Thomas Dixon, whose romances prefigure national reconciliation by marrying Northerners and Southerners who share the racial commonality of “Anglo-Saxon blood.” In this course we will consider how invocations of the Middle Ages have shaped regionalized representations of the Civil War, chivalry, romance, race, gender, Southern “aristocracy,” the feudal antecedents of plantation life, and the economies of the Old and New South. Course texts will include Chaucer’s Wife of Bath’s Tale, Walter Scott’s Ivanhoe, Charles Chestnutt’s The House Behind the Cedars, and Allen Tate’s The Fathers. Other possible course texts include John Pendleton Kennedy’s Swallow Barn, Mark Twain’s A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court, Thomas Nelson Page’s Red Rock, and Margaret Mitchell’s Gone With the Wind.

EN 667-001: Shakespeare in Performance Practicum

CRN# 20247
M 2:00 – 4:30 PM

This course asks students to think about how scholars, directors, and actors interact with, transform, and reimagine early modern playtexts when they bring them to the stage or screen. Toward that end, we will work with Professor Steve Burch of the Theater department and (in February) with actors from the American Shakespeare Center, in hopes of developing our skill at reading a playtext as a performance script. Texts and performances to be discussed will likely include Shakespeare’s Two Gentlemen of Verona, Romeo and Juliet, and The Merry Wives of Windsor, among others.

EN 674-001: Fictions of Enlightenment

CRN# 20248
R 2:00 – 4:30 PM

If we look back to the eighteenth century, to the period in which the novel originated, we can see that the history of the genre is closely tied to key philosophical developments of the Enlightenment. In this period, novels and philosophical texts participated in identical explorations of subjective experience, asked similar questions about human nature and human morality, used the same empirical methods to establish the truth of things, and expressed a matching fascination with human possibility. The relationship, however, was complex, and although many novels and philosophical texts pursued similar goals, the ability of the novel to offer imagined lives and to test possible experiences made it a more flexible and emotionally relevant form of investigation. This course will look at the way eighteenth-century fictions used the resources of the novel to pursue their philosophical goals in the areas of epistemology, human nature, sensibility, education, and gender. Students are not expected to have prior coursework in either philosophy or the eighteenth-century novel.

EN 690-001: Modernism, Archive, & 20th -Century Irish Literature

CRN# 20249
W 9:30 AM – 12:00 PM

This graduate seminar brings together archival studies and twentieth-century literature. We take stock of the growing body of digital archives relevant to modernism and Irish studies. And we familiarize ourselves with theories of modern textual criticism and discuss critical implications of genetic and sociological approaches to editing and research practices. The course initially grounds our discussion with case studies of writers such as James Joyce, Marianne Moore, and Samuel Beckett—writers, that is, whose drafts and versions ask illuminating aesthetic and interpretative questions, writers in some cases whose partial archives have only recently been made available digitally. The second half of the course prepares us to do some hands-on research at Emory University’s Rose Manuscript, Archives, and Rare Book Library, where, as part of our course, we will spend a number of days conducting original research. Emory is noted for its robust archival collection of writings by contemporary Irish writers the likes of Seamus Heaney, Ciaran Carson, and many others. In preparation for this research trip, we will study a lengthy module of later Irish poetry, in concert with your interests and my guidance. On top of some shorter assignments, everyone will write a well-developed and original research paper.