Undergraduate Courses Spring 2022

300-Level English Courses

Literature, Pre-1700

EN 330-001                CHAUCER & MEDIEVAL LIT        TR 9:30-10:45                Cook

In this course we will read Chaucer’s two greatest poems, Troilus and Criseyde and The Canterbury Tales, in the original Middle English (for the Canterbury Tales we will use a “facing translation” which gives both the original language and a modern translation). In the first half of the semester, we will historicize love itself, reading selections from a medieval love handbook called The Art of Love, a few of Marie de France’s short romances or “lais,” and finally, the Troilus. In the second half of the semester, we will read The Canterbury Tales, and we will ponder what the competing storytellers reveal—intentionally or unintentionally—about themselves in the tales they tell. We will also analyze how these stories reinforce or defy the status quo and how they speak to our own historical moment. Course requirements include weekly reading quizzes, three short papers, and a final project for which you can choose to write a critical essay or, if a more creative option appeals to you, compose your own original Canterbury tale in rhyming couplets.

EN 332-001                SIXTEENTH CENTURY LIT           TR 11:00-12:15             McElroy

This course introduces students to much poetry and some prose of the English Renaissance, a period of remarkable creative energy and dramatic cultural change. The course begins with the Italian writings of Petrarch and Castiglione to frame our understanding of the cultural and intellectual ideas that made their way to England in the early part of the sixteenth century. Our work can then be divided roughly into three main sections—Tudor poetry, Spenser’s Faerie Queene, and the Elizabethan sonnet tradition—with shorter segments on Sidney’s Defense of Poesy, the pastoral, female monarchy, broadside culture, and Thomas Harman’s survey of criminal culture. Formal analysis of language and structure will guide our study; you will learn to read closely and carefully and will be asked to consider how Renaissance poets respond to one another and to their literary predecessors, both native and classical. And we will also address questions about the relationship of literature and art to the social and political worlds from which it emerges. We will consider, for example, the impact of the printing press, the Protestant Reformation, and the consolidation of the English state.

EN 333-001                            SHAKESPEARE                    MW 3:00-4:15                Tavares

This course offers an introduction to the study of English Renaissance theatre, including its print, performance, and after-lives. Engaging a range of dramatic genres, particular attention will be paid to scansion, the printed book, and Shakespeare in performance.

EN 335-001                            MILTON                    MWF 11:00-11:50                  Ainsworth

An introduction to Milton’s English poetry and its many complexities. Anchored by an intensive investigation of Paradise Lost, Milton’s great epic, this class will address the technical and theoretical aspects of Milton’s writing as well as discussing the underpinnings of its meaning. We’ll master together some of the best and most intimidating poetry ever written. This semester’s class will consider the role of gender in Milton’s works. We will, of course, discuss relationships between people, following up on previous semester’s topics (like “Men and Women” and “Milton’s Eve”), but we will also consider how gender works itself out amongst Milton’s angels, and even in relation to the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. How does Milton make gender a central element of creation, and in what ways does Milton’s writing complicate our understanding of gender. We will read Milton’s greatest works, including Paradise Lost, Paradise Regained, and Samson Agonistes. We’ll also be the beneficiaries of The Edifice Project, which I will explain on the first day and also describe in some detail at the end of the syllabus. In effect, this class is designed to take your thinking and ideas seriously outside the bounds of this single semester. For some of you, your work will be preserved for use in future EN 335 classes, just as the work of the last class on Milton, Milton and Fanfiction (and the previous classes’ topics) will come into play this semester. Over time, groups of EN 335 students can together construct a larger understanding of Milton through collective effort and investigation of specific aspects or questions in Milton’s work. Students from the previous class will pay us a visit over the course of the semester to talk about Milton with you.

Literature, 1700-1900

EN 340-001                AMERICAN LIT TO 1900                TR 9:30-10:45           Bilwakesh

Where 200-level surveys aimed for breadth and exposure, this course will take a deeper look at a selection of American texts, including some of the lesser-read works of the period. Authors and works may include Martin Delany, Blake; or the Huts of America; Jonathan Edwards, Images of Divine Things; Walt Whitman, Life and Adventures of Jack Engle; Pauline Hopkins, Of One Blood; Ralph Waldo Emerson, “Perpetual Forces”; “Daemonology”; Louisa May Alcott, A Whisper in the Dark; Lorenzo Da Ponte, Memoirs.

EN 347-001          ENGLISH LIT DURING ENLIGHTENMENT      TR 9:30-10:45    Weiss

The Enlightenment, which lasted from the late seventeenth to the early nineteenth centuries, was an intellectual movement that dramatically changed how Western Europeans understood nature, society, and the internal workings of the individual. Through a multi-genre survey, this course examines how these new developments were expressed, promulgated, and questioned in British literature of the period. Covering a variety of genres by a diverse selection of authors, the course is divided into smaller units on philosophy and science, nationalism, colonial expansion and slavery, feeling and the imagination, and gender.

EN 349-001                  VICTORIAN LITERATURE               TR 11:00-12:15    Pionke

English Victorian literature is a site of disorder, complexity, and paradoxical conflict between progress and exploitation, increased political equality and sustained patterns of social deference, conservative morality and radical experimentation. Since, at its height, Victorian England’s overseas empire presided over one-fourth of all people on earth, Victorian writers’ messy and often mutually contradictory responses to their society had global implications that can still be felt today. This course will survey some of their more durable efforts in poetry, nonfiction prose, and the novel, with an eye to both understanding them on their own terms and evaluating their legacy with the benefit that comes from hindsight.

Literature, Post-1900

EN 350-001    TOPICS IN AFRICAN-AMERICAN LIT     TR 3:30-4:45  Bridger Gilmore

This course explores representations of twentieth-century social and political movements in African American novels. In discussing these works, we will attend not only to the ways African American writers have identified social and political problems, but also how they have explored the pitfalls and possibilities in individual and collectives attempts to solve them. Topics that may be covered include reform vs. revolution, interracial solidarity and conflict, class and wealth, gender and power, national and diasporic identity, and alternative communities founded on African and speculative cosmologies.

EN 361-001                  TOPICS AMERICAN LIT 1945-PRESENT           TR 12:30-1:45  White

Tolstoy said “all happy families are alike; each unhappy family is unhappy in its own way.” This course will examine the idea of family in post-WWII America by reading a selection of the era’s most important fiction and poetry on the subject. As we will see, post-war writers have come back and back to the idea of family as a lens through which to write about ideas of identity, including race, religion, and sexuality. It has also been a shaping force in our contemporary understanding of the individual as both a member of, and a figure apart from, the innumerable groupings that comprise our intimate lives. We will read Philip Roth, Gloria Naylor, Zadie Smith, and Jonathan Franzen, among others.

EN 399-001                HONORS SEMINAR IN ENGLISH             MW 3:00-4:15            Novak

This course is designed to teach research skills and methods in literary studies. Students will learn how to locate, identify, evaluate, and integrate secondary sources relevant to their critical work; they will learn how to develop an original idea, construct an annotated bibliography, and write a research proposal.

Pre-Requisites: EN 215 and EN 216 (EN 217 or EN 218 or EN 219 or EN 220 or EN 251 or EN 252). Registration preference will be given to students enrolled in the English departmental honors program.

Creative Writing

EN 301-001                            FICTION WRITING              MW 3:00-4:15            Dale

Close study of the basic principles for composing creative prose. Reading and assigned writing experiments in a broad range of prose strategies.

Prerequisite: EN 200 (This prerequisite is never waived).

EN 301-002                            FICTION WRITING              MW 4:30-5:45            Legerski

Many writers have said that fiction writing is about what it means to be a human being. Fiction of course is “made-up,” not true, fabricated, imaginative creations of writing. A long line of humans have written fiction. In this creative writing class, we will attempt to engage with fiction writing. Fiction and stories are all around us. They are alive in our favorite books and tales from childhood to scribbles in journals to a mega-produced Netflix series. Here, in this class, we will talk about the principals of fiction writing such as character, narrative, audience, pacing, tone, style, setting, dialogue, theme, and other lumber used for storytelling. With these tools, a custom workshop, and through exemplary writers, we will try to see if we can create our own fiction that tells us something about being a human.

EN 301-003                            FICTION WRITING              TR 11:00-12:15          J Crawford

Close study of the basic principles for composing creative prose. Reading and assigned writing experiments in a broad range of prose strategies.

Prerequisite: EN 200 (This prerequisite is never waived).

EN 301-004                            FICTION WRITING              TR 12:30-1:45            Ariail

Close study of the basic principles for composing creative prose. Reading and assigned writing experiments in a broad range of prose strategies.

Prerequisite: EN 200 (This prerequisite is never waived).

EN 301-005                            FICTION WRITING              TR 2:00-3:15              J Crawford

Close study of the basic principles for composing creative prose. Reading and assigned writing experiments in a broad range of prose strategies.

Prerequisite: EN 200 (This prerequisite is never waived).

EN 301-006                            FICTION WRITING              TR 3:30-4:45              Whalen

Close study of the basic principles for composing creative prose. Reading and assigned writing experiments in a broad range of prose strategies.

Prerequisite: EN 200 (This prerequisite is never waived).

EN 303-001                            POETRY WRITING              TR 9:30 – 10:45          Shaw

Close study of basic principles for composing poetry. Reading and assigned writing experiments in a broad range of poetic styles.

Prerequisite: EN 200 (This prerequisite is never waived).

EN 303-002                            POETRY WRITING              TR 11:00 – 12:15        Neace

Close study of basic principles for composing poetry. Reading and assigned writing experiments in a broad range of poetic styles.

EN 303-003                            POETRY WRITING              TR 12:30 – 1:45          Sackett

Close study of basic principles for composing poetry. Reading and assigned writing experiments in a broad range of poetic styles.

Prerequisite: EN 200 (This prerequisite is never waived).

EN 303-004                            POETRY WRITING              TR 3:30–4:45              Clark

Close study of basic principles for composing poetry. Reading and assigned writing experiments in a broad range of poetic styles.

Prerequisite: EN 200 (This prerequisite is never waived).

EN 305-001                CREATIVE NONFICTION WRITING        MW 3:00–4:15           Riesen

Study of the basic principles of writing creative nonfiction. Reading and assigned writing experiments in a broad range of forms of the genre.

EN 305-002                CREATIVE NONFICTION WRITING        TR 9:30-10:45         Oliu

The burgeoning of creative nonfiction has spawned several sub-genres including memoir, the personal essay, and the lyric essay. This class is an experiment in these subgenres of creative nonfiction. You are invited to play: there is always a pressure in creative writing workshops to craft the most amazing & ridiculous thing in the world that will silence your fellow classmates. That is not the goal of workshop; we are here to struggle, to “attempt,” (the word “essay” means “to try”), to struggle, to, well, write. Write, write, write. We will read a lot of challenging work in this class in order to attempt to understand the genre of nonfiction—something that contains multitudes. We will experiment with our own writing and test our preconceived notions of what we believe nonfiction to be. We will reflect, explore, hack. We will assess our past and our present in an attempt to create something truthful & beautiful.

EN 305-003                CREATIVE NONFICTION WRITING        TR 2:00–3:15              Morton

Study of the basic principles of writing creative nonfiction. Reading and assigned writing experiments in a broad range of forms of the genre.


Literary Editing and Publishing

This course will examine the origins, evolution, and the present-day landscape of literary journals and small presses, with a special emphasis on print culture, and learning the fundamentals of the editing process, from the acquisition and revision of work through its proofreading and publishing. As part of this process, we will discuss and implement strategies for publishing our own work covering the entire submission process, from identifying suitable journals to writing professional cover letters. As a culminating project we will produce a print edition of the eighth issue of Call Me [Brackets]—the literary journal started by the fall 2018 class. This will involve selecting a new theme and aesthetic, and introduce, in addition to the aforementioned skills, the basics of layout, design, and binding while considering essential post-publishing efforts such as distribution and marketing.


Digital Writing: Blogging and Online Presence

As technology, economics transform publishing, online writing has disrupted, subverted, and revolutionized the industry—leading to newly emergent readership groups and dynamic new modes of storytelling. As popular blogger Sufia Tippu writes, “Blogging is hard because of the grind required to stay interesting and relevant.” But it’s not just blogs—writers are also sharing their work through their own personal sites and social media, as well as online journals and magazines. For this course, we will develop our own portfolios of digital writing. We will examine the curation of online persona and voice, and the challenges of writing in online environments. The class will also explore the conventions of different digital writing variants, including the personal essay and food/travel/pop culture writing. Finally, students will begin the process of submitting their work to online journals and magazines.

EN 308-001                FORMS OF CREATIVE WRITING   TR 11:00 – 12:15      Bingham

Fantastical Fictions

Fantastical Fictions offers a guided, deep dive into the world of fantasy fiction and its cousin genres, like horror, science fiction, fabulism, and more. Students will start the course by reading, analyzing, and discussing not only stories by some of the best fantasy authors (both classic and contemporary), but also essays on the genre and craft by writers working today. Every class session and unit will incorporate significant writing, but the second half of the semester will focus purely on our original creations: students will produce their own pieces of fantastical fiction, which we will discuss as a class in a conventional workshop format.

EN 308-002                FORMS OF CREATIVE WRITING   TR 12:30 – 1:45        Pirkle

Discovering Your Voice

In this class students will examine how voice is established not only in a single poem but over the course of a collection or group of poems. The class will be run as both a seminar and workshop, with the underlying question for the semester being: How does poetic voice work on a page versus out loud? As a class, we will read a contemporary collection of poetry and study how the writer sustains his or her voice throughout the book, then compare it to audio and video recordings of the poet reading his or her work. Writing assignments will encourage the student to play with voice to discover their own voice as writers. At the end of the semester, students will submit a final portfolio of original work that consists of a unified, distinct voice.

EN 308-003                FORMS OF CREATIVE WRITING   TR 2:00 – 3:15         Alpert-Abrams

In this class, we’ll be looking at, and writing, “experimental” literature. What does that mean? The emphasis in this course will be on experimenting—trying to learn from the experience of unconventional (literary) production, with the ultimate goal of trying to express and understand our condition as human beings in (gulp!) 2022. We’ll try to break through our own boundaries of what we think writing can be. We’ll try various techniques, such as automatic writing (write don’t think!), constrained writing (for instance, writing without the letter “e”), aleatory writing (using elements of chance to create meaning), cut-up technique (rearranging written words to create new texts), various forms of non-narrative writing, as well as using computer programs to experiment with computer-generated texts. We might even write without any words! We’ll read examples of literature from authors like Isodore Isou, Georges Perec, Julio Cortazar, Clarice Lispector, Giannina Braschi, and from literary/artistic movements like Oulipo, Fluxus, and the Lettrists. We’ll also look at the theoretical underpinnings of such experimental writing.


EN 320-001    INTRODUCTION TO LINGUISTICS                      TR 9:30-10:45            Popova

Introduction to the study of language, including subjects such as language acquisition, variation, and origins. The system of sounds, syntax, and meaning are illustrated in English and other languages.

EN 321-001    LINGUISTIC APPROACHES TO GRAMMAR      TR 12:30-1:45          Popova

A study of English grammar integrating principles from linguistic theory with structural approaches to grammar. The course includes a focus on the expectations of grammatical usage in different contexts and an understanding of how to apply this knowledge in a pedagogical setting. This course is a prerequisite for EN 423, EN 424, EN 425, EN 466.


EN 300-001    INTRODUCTION TO ENGLISH STUDIES            TR 2:00-3:15              Cardon

You’ve perhaps read The Great Gatsby, but how would you teach it? Why, do you think, is it so important that nearly every high school requires its students to read it? What do we do with famous works of literature? Why does literature even matter in the “real world”? EN 300 is designed primarily for English majors, but also for anyone interested in literary analysis. By the end of the semester, students will ––Employ methods employed in our discipline for in-depth literary study; ––Enrich their skills in critical reading, writing, and analysis; ––Apply a range of critical and theoretical approaches to primary texts; ––Practice the vocabulary, techniques, and research methods associated with literary analysis; ––Close read texts in the form of papers and other assignments; ––Identify which critical approaches fit their interests and the nuances of a particular text; and ––Recognize how canonical literature has historically marginalized certain voices while privileging others, and work to interpret readings with a more nuanced, multifaceted perspective. To become more adept at reading and interpreting literary texts, students will begin the course by revisiting a canonical work of literature (F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby) and learning about different methods for approaching, analyzing, and writing. From there, students will learn to apply these critical methods to other genres, including poetry, drama, and other texts and media.

Rhetoric and Composition

EN 309-001      ADVANCED EXPOSITORY WRITING     MWF  9:00-9:50       Eubanks

Study and practice in methods of exposition, explanation and explication, logic and persuasion, definition and analogy, analysis and evaluation. Enrollment is limited to 15. Writing proficiency is required for a passing grade in this course. A student who does not write with the skill normally required of an upper-division student will not earn a passing grade, no matter how well the student performs in other areas of the course.

EN 313-001                   WRITING ACROSS MEDIA         MWF 2:00 – 2:50         Coryell

Advanced writing course exploring composition with images, sound, video, and other media while considering theoretical perspectives on rhetorical concepts such as authorship, audience, process, revision, and design.

EN 317-001       WRITING CENTER PRACTICUM           TR 11:00 – 12:15        Dayton

This course combines reading and reflection on composition theory with hands-on experience in tutoring writing and working with diverse groups of students and texts. In the first eight weeks of the semester, students will reflect on their own writing process/preparation and conduct observations of writing tutorials. In the second eight weeks, students do three hours of consulting per week. After completing the course successfully, undergraduates are eligible to work for pay in the Writing Center.

**To enroll in EN 317, students must apply and be accepted. For application information, go to: https://writingcenter.ua.edu/jobs **

EN 319-001 through 006                    TECHNICAL WRITING                               STAFF

This class will focus on principles and practices of technical writing, including audience analysis, organization and planning, information design and style, usability testing, and collaborative writing. Writing proficiency is required for a passing grade in this course. A student who does not write with the skill normally required of an upper-division student will not earn a passing grade, no matter how well the student performs in other areas of the course. These concepts highlight the relationship between content (having something to say) and expression (saying something a certain way). ENG 319 emphasizes three themes: (1) understanding implications of technical writing, (2) recognizing contextualized writing and technology practices, and (3) developing strategies to improve our writing skills.

Prerequisites: EN 101 and EN 102 (or equivalent) and junior standing.

Special Topics in Writing or Literature

EN 310-001                   SPECIAL TOPICS IN WRITING     TR 9:30 – 10:45            Presnall

In this class, we will approach communication as an ecology within which human and non-human actors affect each other. If I speak to a rock and don’t get a response, does that mean it doesn’t affect me, direct my movement? Does it invoke me? Does my cat? If my cat leaves a dead mouse on the step and I interpret it as a gift, have I missed a chance at communication? Mindful Writing Rather than starting from a known purpose and thesis and advancing an argument, this class begins by questioning what we know and uses extrahuman relations to promote new thoughts and modes of expression. We will integrate the contemplative practice of meditation with journal writing to promote creativity, controlled attention, and meta-cognitive awareness. Students will apply concepts developed through reading and discussion to an analysis of literary and cultural texts, develop their own narrative-nonfiction writing projects, and present on their process to the class.

EN 310-002                   SPECIAL TOPICS IN WRITING     MWF 11:00 – 11:50      Bedsole

Business Writing

Focused on writing in business and professional situations, this course is designed for advanced students interested in developing their professional communication skills. It prepares students to compose and deliver work in various modes and genres expected in professional environments including letters, memos, resumes, and reports. Students will also practice composing processes, research relevant professional questions and practice professional problem-solving in written communication. As an integral part of these activities, we will examine the rhetorical nature of business writing in addressing diverse audiences, sometimes with multiple purposes.

EN 310-320                   SPECIAL TOPICS IN WRITING     TR 5:00 – 6:15              Millsaps

Legal Writing

This course will examine the various ways writing is involved in a law suit — from the time a client first meets with a lawyer through all stages of trial preparation, trial, and appeals of the outcome. You will discover that different styles of writing are needed at different stages and for different audiences, and you will be introduced to the strategic thinking that goes into the art of litigating. This class will benefit students who anticipate being the next great trial attorney, students who would prefer to use their writing skills to represent clients behind the scenes, and students who simply want to develop a better understanding of legal analysis.

EN 311-001       SPECIAL TOPICS IN LITERATURE       MWF 10:00 – 10:50    Waltman

Workplace Violence, Real and Imagined

This course is focused on representations of office violence–in literature, film and television–from Melville’s “Bartleby the Scrivener” to more contemporary works such as Then We Came to the End by Joshua Ferris. Long before workplace violence became a fact of life, the desire for it–that violent urge–was present in fiction that uses the office as a setting. We will study those fictions, but also examine causes and manifestations of real workplace violence, the relationship between work and power and “individuality,” and how those ideas re-shape our imaginings of the office as a setting.

Directed Courses

EN 329-001 through 004                    DIRECTED STUDIES                                   STAFF

Prerequisite: Enrollment only by previous arrangement with a specific instructor and with the permission of the director of undergraduate English studies.

400-Level English Courses

Advanced Studies in Literature

EN 400/EN 500                                 SENIOR SEMINAR               S 9:00-5:00                 Jolly

The Bible as Literature

This course is a systematic general introduction to the literary forms of the Bible. Emphasis will be placed on recent and respected impartial literary, linguistic, anthropological, sociological, and theological scholarship. Requirements include critical and thoughtful oral participation and critical responses and a paper to be presented orally to the class on the day the topic is discussed.

NOTE: Before coming to the first class, students should have read Genesis.

EN 411-001    ADV COMPARATIVE/MULTICULTURAL LIT   TR 12:30-1:45             Pionke

Prior to independence and partition in 1947, “India” referred not just to the modern nation of that name, but a region encompassing the now-sovereign countries of Afghanistan, Bhutan, India, Myanmar, Nepal, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, and Tibet, wherein many thousands of local languages and dialects prevailed. The British contribution to this polyglot region was, of course, English, which became the language of colonial authority, to be sure, but also remains a common first, second, third, etc. means of communication among the many linguistic groups of the subcontinent. Until the 1860s, poetry was the most socially influential and widely available genre of English-language writing in India. And English-language poetry was versatile in its writers and in the perspectives it offered on India itself. Without claiming to be comprehensive, this course will survey a portion of the breadth of English-language poetry written in India between the 1780s and the 1910s, from the first period of English colonial occupation through the receipt of the 1913 Nobel Prize for literature by Indian poet RabindranathTragore on the strength of his English-language poetry. This course fulfills the university’s “W” requirement, and so requires two papers, one of which will be completed, graded, and returned before mid-semester. Writing proficiency within this discipline (English) is required for a passing grade in this course.

EN 411-002 ADV STUDIES COMP/MULTICULTURAL LIT  TR 11:00-12:15   Bilwakesh

Literature of South Asia

This literary survey of the area roughly encompassing contemporary Pakistan, India, Sri Lanka, and Bangladesh begins with a study of the Sanskrit epics Mahabharata and Ramayana, and a critical discussion of translation. We survey the linguistic and generic diversity of the region, with readings translated from and informed by Tamil, Greek, Bengali, Malayalam Urdu, Portuguese, and Hindi. We study the long history of English in India, nominal constructions of race and class, the role of colonialism in the development and criticism of this body of work, and the creative possibilities made available by its study. Authors may include Anuk Arudpragasam, Arundhati Roy, Rudyard Kipling, Luís de Camões, Chandidas, Mirabai, Kabir, Salman Rushdie, Ghalib, Agha Shahid Ali, Sara Suleri, and A.K. Ramanujan.

EN 433-001                ADV STUDIES IN BRITISH LIT          MW 3:00-4:15       McNaughton

Modern Irish Literature

Ireland’s tumultuous history inspired a collection of world-renowned literature that grapples with some of the most pressing questions of the twentieth century. Many of the writers’ names you will recognize: WB Yeats, James Joyce, Sean O’Casey, Elizabeth Bowen, and Samuel Beckett. In this course we will also consider contemporary Irish poets and playwrights such as Seamus Heaney, Ciaran Carson, Medbh McGuckian, and Martin MacDonagh, among others. The works of these writers compel readers with their tremendous aesthetic power. Yet they offer more than dark humor, interesting characters, and verbal mastery. Set against the backdrop of civil-war and international conflict, the works help us to think through the ethical and political implications of imperialism and resistance, military engagement and terrorism, nationalist delimiting of identity and broader understandings. By bearing down on the political history and culture of Ireland—and by reading political cartoons, poetry, stories, novels, and plays—we will contemplate the function of aesthetic culture in a foundational postcolonial moment.

EN 433-002                ADV STUDIES IN BRITISH LIT          MW 4:30-5:45       Tavares

Estranged Woods: Theatre and the Environment

Designed for advanced English majors, a special topics course that focuses on issues in British literature. To survey fundamentals of genre, dramaturgy, and theatre studies criticism, this course explores the ways in which performance constitutes an environmental act. Organized into three units is a schedule of plays and other readings from a range of periods and perspectives. Some of these plays take place in nature, some are explicitly about ecology, and in some the environment becomes a political agent. By developing a series of three interlocking essays that culminate in a final portfolio, students will have the opportunity to analyze a particular dramatic oeuvre and employ a specific theoretical lens as a means to interrogate the relationship between drama and the environment.

EN 433-003                ADV STUDIES IN BRITISH LIT          TR 9:30-10:45       Wittman

Modernism and Madness

“Madness is terrific I can assure you, and not to be sniffed at; and in its lava I still find most of the things I write about. It shoots out of one everything shaped, final, not in mere driblets as sanity does.” —Virginia Woolf, Letters

“In a real dark night of the soul, it is always three o’clock in the morning, day after day.” —F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Crack-Up

In this course we will look at modernist literature (1900-1945) from the American, English, Caribbean, and European traditions, in order to understand the generative nature of “madness.” Why were so many writers ill? What is the relationship between madness and creativity? How, as the manic-depressive Woolf suggests above, are mental health episodes generative? Why is madness romanticized? What is the cachet of madness? We will not be retroactively “diagnosing” the writers (although most were diagnosed) that we read, but rather trying to understand them from a more meta-level, plunging into their gains and losses as they negotiate mental health challenges of all kinds: psychosis, depression, bipolar disorder, and more. Although madness will be our primary concern, we will devote considerable time to other related issues that come up in the books we read (race, class, nation, fascism, gender identity, and more) and understand why we read them as modernist texts. Writers under discussion include Jean Rhys, Virginia Woolf, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Ernest Hemingway, Emil Cioran, Nella Larsen, and Sarah Kane.

EN 433-004                ADV STUDIES IN BRITISH LIT          TR 2:00-3:15         Weiss

Mad Women of Romanticism

If a woman went mad in early Romantic-period literature, it usually went one of two ways. Either she became passive and mentally vacant, or ended up raving and violent. But either way, the cause was usually the same—she lost her mind because she lost her man. Portrayals of the passive, despondent figure were particularly popular in the period, as they supported dominant gender ideologies. A number of women writers at the time, however, used the figure not to reinforce ideas about women’s fragility and need for male support, but rather to explore the psychological impact on women of living in a male-dominated society. In this class, we will read Romantic-period novels written by women in which an important female character goes mad or shows signs of considerable psychic distress. In the first few weeks of class we will read excerpts from histories of psychiatric disorders and literary critical works on love-madness to create the context for understanding novelistic portrayals of madwomen. We will then move on to novels by Mary Wollstonecraft, Mary Hays, Eliza Fenwick, Charlotte Dacre, and Maria Edgeworth, all of which feature a prominent female character with a severe psychological affliction. Students will have frequent quizzes, weekly short writing assignments, one 5-6 page essay, and one 12-page research-based paper.

EN 444-001 / WS 410   ADV STUDIES LIT CRITICISM & THEORY    TR 2:00-3:15  Purvis

Issues concerning sexuality and bodily integrity are fraught with controversy and comprised of many complicated and competing views. In the midst of overwhelming sexual violence and gender injustice, feminist commitments to sexual liberation and gender justice persist. This course establishes the long, ongoing, and complicated relationship between sexual liberation and gender justice, with a focus on feminist responses to sexual violence. We study an interdisciplinary array of feminist writings on the persistence of sexual violence and rape culture as well as the emergence of a radical theory of sexual justice entailing sex positivity and pleasure activism. We ask: What sort of sexual revolution is possible in the absence of gender justice? Students in this course will gain an understanding of the issues surrounding sexual violence and rape culture, historically and today; assess artificial antagonisms, such as that between Sex Positive and Sex Negative Feminists; break down problematic terminology, such as “Sex Wars”; and emerge with a firm grasp of “sexual justice,” “sex-positive feminism,” and “pleasure activism.” This course provides a strong background for further study and feminist praxis, including some of the rudiments of feminist theory.

Prerequisites: For WS 430: WS 200: “Introduction to Women’s Studies” (or equivalent) or permission of the professor. For EN 444: 18 hours of English Study, including 6 hours at the 200 level and 6 hours at the 300 level. Writing proficiency is required for a passing grade in this course.

EN 488-001    ADV STUDIES IN AFRICAN AMERICAN LIT          MW 4:30-5:45    Manora

From Metaphysical Dilemmas to Black Girl Magic: 20th and 21st Century African American Women’s Fiction & Film

This seminar turns upon the examination of 20th/21st century African American women’s metaphysical fiction and film, including postmodern, philosophical, and speculative fiction, as well as works of magical realism. We will spend the majority of our time examining literary and filmic works “made” by and/or centering on African American women and girls, as well as the social, cultural, and critical discourses that inform those works. Using literary and cultural studies approaches, we will consider the manner in which writers/filmmakers and selected works of literature and film treat black female subjectivity, both as personal experience and as relational/communal construct, the ways in which they expressly or implicitly critique Western models of subjectivity, and, of course, the ways they engage issues related to race, class, gender, and sexuality, as well as the critical intersections of the same, with an attentiveness to the ways they curate and/or challenge various representations and images of African American women and girls held in the cultural imagination. Authors may include Octavia Butler, Toni Morrison, Alice Walker, and Rivers Solomon. Films may include Eve’s Bayou, The Secret Life of Bees, Beasts of the Southern Wild. Requirements: Critical Responses, Short Paper, Long Paper.

Advanced Studies in Writing

EN 455-001                            ADV STUDIES IN WRITING          TR 11:00-12:15       Presnall

Montaigne and the Essay

The focus of this course is Michel de Montaigne and the Essay. We will discuss the life of Montaigne, his method, the reception of his Essays since first published in 1580, and his influence on other major writers. We will also practice his method of writing from life to understand our own minds and how to live well. Students will follow their interests in researching Montaigne’s influence and finish with an essay after his experimental form.

EN 455-002                            ADV STUDIES IN WRITING          TR 12:30-1:45        Tekobbe

Personal Writing in the Digital Age

This course centers on metacognitive writing, reflective writing, and creative self-expression in writing. Metacognition, simply described, is thinking about thinking. As a process, it can help reveal how we know what we know and active that knowledge for problem solving and creative applications. Reflective writing is examining a memory or moment and the impact and knowledge gained from that time. Together, these writing practices will engage our self-awareness and explore our own identities. Assignments may include personal journaling, vlogging, social media composing, podcasting, and other multimodal forms of personal writing. Alternatives to digital writing are always available, and respect for students’ privacy and personal experiences will be written into the syllabus and course design. Weekly writing and composing are required. In this course, we will reconsider the notion of Audience as we write about ourselves, for ourselves, and for personal relations, whether that be immediate family, close friends, or complete strangers on the internet.

EN 455-003                            ADV STUDIES IN WRITING          TR 2:00-3:15        Gardiner

Designed for advanced English majors, this special topics course focuses on the process of writing, with a special emphasis on multimodal composition and experiential learning opportunities. You will enhance your research, critical thinking/analytical, and writing skills as you document and visualize historical and cultural landscapes of the Great Depression and the place of your own family history within those landscapes. We will read short pieces by Zora Neale Hurston, Sarah Broom, Harry Crews, Rick Bragg, Isabel Wilkerson, and others, while doing family research in Ancestry.com and Newspapers.com, archival research in the Hoole Special Collections and the Library of Congress photo collections, library database research, and interviews. Student writing will be showcased on the course “Dirt Poor” Web site. Course work includes composing in traditional, oral, visual, and digital formats.

Creative Writing

EN 408-001                ADVANCED CREATIVE WRITING          MW 3:00-4:15    Coryell

The Novel (two semester course)

This is part two of a two semester course designed with the goal of completing a draft of a novel. In this class we will workshop portions of the novels-in-progress, talk about the revision, as well as discussion the novel publication process for novels. We will read and discuss a couple of novels in order to help inspire the novel writing process and discuss the many challenges of writing a longform narrative, particularly in the later stages of the process. Workshops will occur throughout the semester and novel sections will be turned in regularly. As this is the second semester of the course, the end goal will be to complete or come close to completing a draft of a novel. Students who did not take the first semester of the course are welcome to take the second semester though it’s recommended that they enter the class with a partially completed novel draft. Priority will be given to students who have taken the first semester of the course.

EN 408-002                ADVANCED CREATIVE WRITING          TR 9:30-10:45             Kidd

Fantasy Writing (short fiction)

If you like to hang out in, explore, and create fantastical realms of gold (as Keats called Homer’s mythical landscape) this course is for you, whether you enjoy the old-school lands of Faerie that fueled the imagination of JRR Tolkien and C.S. Lewis, the magic-infused worlds of JK Rowling, Robin McKinley, or Diana Wynne Jones, or whether you prefer the unsettling vision of writers like Neil Gaiman and China Mieville. Students will explore ways that speculative elements enter a text, methods of world building, and elements of social, political, and environmental consciousness that find their ways into fantasy writing. We will work exclusively in flash fiction and short story forms. The final project will guide students through researching a suitable journal and preparing a submission to that publication.

EN 408-003                ADVANCED CREATIVE WRITING          TR 9:30-10:45        Minicucci

The Writer’s Room: Adventures in Collaborative Writing

What do you picture when you think of a writer? Alone at a desk? Earbuds in at a coffee shop, furiously typing? If you do, this begs the question: is writing a lonely thing? In this class we’ll attempt to answer that question by examining the genres, structures, and varieties of Creative Writing that break out of the solitary model and into a collaborative way to look at creativity and production. Each unit of the semester will focus on a different collaborative mini-project, from one-act stage adaptations to ekphrastic poetry sequences, and from TV spec scripts to experimental narratives. We’ll spend the semester examining model texts, hearing from practitioners in the field, and building whole worlds from what we discover working together.

EN 408-004                ADVANCED CREATIVE WRITING          TR 11:00-12:15        Pirkle

The Ode Less Travelled (Poetry)

This poetry-writing course will offer a contemporary approach to writing in traditional poetic forms, such as odes, ballads, sonnets, elegies, and dramatic monologues. In “The Ode Less Travelled” the students and professor will slow down and study why certain forms have persisted even as cultures have shifted, as well as how these forms differ from each other. Students will read numerous examples of each form, and discuss how they work, then students will write their own formal poems and workshop them. The semester may culminate with each student devising and executing their own “nonce form” that incorporates what they’ve learned about form.

EN 408-005       ADVANCED CREATIVE WRITING       TR 11:00-12:15          Collum

Screenwriting—Elements of the Full-length Feature Film (Suspense/Thrillers)

Successful suspense/thrillers such as Memento, Inception, Se7en, The Prestige, and Silence of the Lambs pique our interest, tap into our insecurities, and exploit our most primal fears because they are intelligent, thought-provoking, and filled with dangers (both real and imagined). In this course, we’ll examine how good suspense/thrillers simultaneously bring us pleasure, stir apprehension and uncertainty, and sustain conflict. Furthermore, we’ll explore how such stories prompt us to more closely examine ourselves and our fears. We’ll read a variety of screenplays in the suspense/thriller genre to examine how concept, character, suspense, plot, dialogue, and pacing make movies in this genre click. As we examine successful screenplays/films, we will also work through the process of developing, outlining, and writing a full-length feature screenplay (approx. 90-120 pages) in the suspense/thriller genre. Students will work collaboratively and will present work through in-class workshops and activities. Note: This course requires the purchase of Final Draft 12, which is the industry standard software for screenwriting format and production. Student discounts may be available.

EN 408-006                ADVANCED CREATIVE WRITING          TR 12:30-1:45        Newell

How to Write Comedy

This course is an exploration of the entire spectrum of humor in books, both fiction and non-fiction, standup, magazines, satire, television, film, plays, web, et. al. and how to utilize various comedic techniques. The class will learn how to naturally construct a mode of humor to develop skills in writing comedy. We will study many different writers ranging from Jane Austin to David Sedaris.

EN 408-007                ADVANCED CREATIVE WRITING          TR 2:00-3:15       Whalen

Flash Fiction

A course dedicated to the study, and practice, of micro and flash fiction. We’ll read and discuss a wide variety of short-short stories, ranging from one-sentence to 1000 words in length. Students will learn to cut to the quick and utilize minimalist techniques to craft fiction that delivers big in a small package. There will be weekly writing prompts, and several opportunities to share original micro/flash fiction in “workshop” to receive peer and instructor feedback.

EN 408-008                ADVANCED CREATIVE WRITING          TR 2:00-3:15         E Parker

The New Journalism

During the emergence of “The New Journalism” in the 1960s and ‘70s, with writers such as Tom Wolfe, Hunter S. Thompson, Truman Capote, Joan Didion, and University of Alabama alumnus Gay Talese, straight nonfiction reportage began adopting the techniques of fiction—dialogue, scene-setting, intimate personal details, the use of interior monologue, metaphorical depth, etc.—and abandoned the sterile objective perspective of “newsworthy subjects” in favor of turning the lens toward less traditional subjects, even the journalists themselves, and a new genre of immersion writing evolved. We will look at the evolution of this trend from the 1960s and earlier, following it to the contemporary explosion of immersion project literature in books, magazines, podcasts, blogs, and documentaries. As writers, we will immerse ourselves in our own communities and lives to find subjects and produce essays and possibly podcasts and mini-documentaries. We will be what Gay Talese calls “nonfiction writer[s] pursuing the literature of reality.”

EN 408-009                ADVANCED CREATIVE WRITING          TR 3:30-4:45         Guthrie

The Long Poem (poetry)

When we think of the best work by the greatest poets, it’s no wonder we often think of their longer poems. The genre bestows a certain prestige upon its successful practitioner—for good reason. The short lyric poem is challenging enough in its demands for compression, precision, and musicality, yet writers of long poems must also sustain our attention and reward our time investment; they must extend our curiosity over many pages. In this workshop we’ll focus on longer poetry (100+ lines), reading great older works by the likes of Whitman, Frost, and Bishop, as well as more recent works by Frank Bidart, Anne Carson, Terrence Hayes, and Maggie Nelson, among others. Students will dabble in a variety of long poem subgenres with the aim of developing a penchant for one, culminating in a final project. Since narrative is typically a vital presence in the long poem, prose writers are welcome and should feel at home, even as they reckon with the techniques of poetry.

EN 408-011                ADVANCED CREATIVE WRITING       T 2:00-4:30                Estes

You Must Revise Your Life: Writing and Self-Invention (multi-genre)

This course is concerned with human flourishing, specifically aimed at those who consider writing (and writing well!) to be part of living well. We will study the question of what constitutes a good, ethical life across art, philosophy, and science; we will play, cook, and walk; we will practice techniques for self-discovery and exploration, learn to generate and sustain deep work in imaginative flow; we will undertake experiments to build constructive habits, self-awareness, and self-belief; we will write and create across genres and media; we will become increasingly awakened to joy and wonder.

EN 408-012/JCM 442-001     ADVANCED CREATIVE WRITING   T 2:00-4:30       Bragg

Long-form Articles

This course is designed to help students understand writing and editing of long-form articles for publication in print and online depth magazines. Students will learn advanced narrative non-fiction writing techniques and how to gather information for longer feature stories. Writing proficiency is required for a passing grade in this course. A student who does not write with the skill normally required of an upper-division student will not earn a passing grade, no matter how well the student performs in other areas of the course.

Prerequisites: EN 200 and EN 301 and EN 303


EN 466-001                ADV STUDIES IN LINGUSTIC       TR 12:30-1:45            Poole

Corpus Linguistics

This course introduces students to language corpora as a resource for language analysis and language teaching and learning. The course provides an overview to the design, collection, and analysis of corpora for discourse analysis and how corpora and corpus data can enhance language pedagogy. Students will learn how to use available public corpora but also how to design and build their own specialized corpus for their own research interests and teaching purposes. The course focuses upon applications of corpora for descriptive and critical discourse analysis as well as language pedagogy but will also briefly explore relevant domains such as corpus-aided stylistics and corpus-aided forensic linguistics.

Directed Courses

EN 429-001 / 002                               DIRECTED READINGS                               STAFF

Prerequisite: Enrollment only by previous arrangement with a specific instructor and with the permission of the director of undergraduate English studies.

EN 430-001 / 002 / 003                      ENGLISH INTERNSHIP                               STAFF

An on- or off-campus training position in which students use the skills they have gained as English majors and enhance their employment opportunities after graduation. Interns work approximately 10 hours a week, holding responsible positions with, among others, Alabama Heritage, Alabama Alumni Magazine, and the Tuscaloosa Public Defender’s Office. Apply to the director of undergraduate studies in the Department of English. Please see the departmental website for the application form and further details.

EN 499                                                HONORS THESIS                                         STAFF

The Honors Thesis in English course is an individualized, directed readings class that culminates in a 30-50 pp. thesis. It is the final required course for the Honors in English program. Each student enrolled will work individually with a faculty mentor.

Prerequisite: EN 399.