2019 Winter Session

Listed below are short descriptions of our 2019 Winter Session courses.  View the full course schedule here.

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Course Descriptions Archive
Registration Tips & Tricks

REGISTRATION NOTE (4 JULY): ENGL 112 IS NOW FULL. If you need a writing course, register for WRDS 150. Sections numbered 600 and above are restricted FOR students outside of Arts, but you’ll need to move quickly to get the remaining available seats. Sections with letters (01A, 02B) are for Arts students only, so scroll ahead to the NUMBERED sections. **Get on the waiting list for WRDS 150.

Approaches to Literature
Term 1
MWF, 9:00 AM - 10:00 AM

The course description for this section of ENGL 110 is not yet available. Please contact the instructor directly for more information.

Approaches to Literature
Term 1
MWF, 10:00 AM - 11:00 AM

This section of ENGL 110 will focus on issues of identity and place. How does place (geographical, social, psychological, even textual) shape who we are as human beings? And how does literature both define and mediate the relationship between identity and place? In our readings, we will address questions of class, gender, nationality, and race, as they intersect with our main categories. We’ll explore these questions in poetry (by Thomas Wyatt, Christina Rossetti, William Blake, Linton Kwesi Johnson, David Dabydeen, Jackie Kay, and others), drama (Sam Shepard’s True West and Tomson Highway’s The Rez Sisters), and fiction (Charlotte Bronte’s Jane Eyre and Toni Morrison’s Jazz).

ENGL 110 counts as 3 credits toward most faculties’ English/Writing requirements, and as 3 credits of the Faculty of Arts Literature requirement.

Approaches to Literature
Term 1
MWF, 11:00 AM - 12:00 PM

  "That's when the hornet stung me" -- Gord Downie and the Tragically Hip, "Ahead by A Century"

Narrative, or the act of storytelling, is one of our most basic daily activities, as H. Porter Abbott, a narrative expert, reminds us. We encounter narratives in newspapers, advertisements, text messages, letters, novels, plays, poems, paintings, rock songs, films, political speeches, health reports, and academic textbooks.  Narrative is everywhere because it is a foundational dimension of language and human thought.

This course is an introduction to the study of narrative elements, especially as found in examples of Canadian fiction, drama, poetry, and film.   Some of the fundamental questions that we will take up include the following:  What exactly is narrative? Why are narratives important for organizing human experience?  How and why do writers manipulate narrative time?

These questions and others will be explored in lectures, group activities, discussion groups, and weekly readings in H. Porter Abbott's core textbook on narrative.  The course requirements include one in-class essay, one home essay, one short answer test, pop quizzes, active participation, and a final examination.

Required texts:

Core Textbook: H. Porter Abbott, The Cambridge Introduction to Narrative, 2nd Ed.
Short stories: Madeleine Thien, Simple Recipes (M &S)
Novel: Michael Ondaatje, In the Skin of a Lion (Vintage)
Drama: John Gray and Eric Peterson, Billy Bishop Goes to War (Talon)
Poetry/Songs: Selected poems -- and songs by the Tragically Hip, and others
Film: Atanarjuat:  The Fast Runner (Isuma/NFB 2001), directed by Zacharias  Kunuk and screenplay by Paul Apak Angilirk

Approaches to Literature
Term 1
MWF, 12:00 PM - 1:00 PM

Along with substantial work on poetry, this section of English 110 will focus on one play and two novels about shipwrecks and the people who survive them. In addition to the excitement of disaster, we will consider the significance of the ways in which these stories of the loss of what the characters understand to be “civilization” leads them to think about some of the big questions with which human beings have long struggled: What makes us human and not animal? What is human nature? What about race, gender and other kinds of difference? Who has power and why?

What about God, and is that the same thing as religion? Do we just reflect reality with the stories we tell ourselves, or are we actually creating reality?

Discussing poetry, drama, and fiction, this course will introduce students to the analytical skills and critical thinking essential to university-level literary reading, thinking and writing. In lectures and discussions, students will pursue hands-on practice of methods of literary analysis.

Reading ahead? Choose HG Wells’ creepy mad scientist novel, The Island of Dr. Moreau or the boy and his tiger tale of Yann Martel’s The Life of Pi, or Shakespeare’s classic shipwreck play, The Tempest.

Approaches to Literature
Term 1
MWF, 2:00 PM - 3:00 PM

This course examines narratives of race, technology and science in a range of North American texts from the 19th to 21st centuries. Students will read and discuss novels, poetry, short stories, plays, and other media productions. The course introduces students to frameworks of literary, critical race, and postcolonial theory in order to analyze how narratives about science and innovation emerge through ongoing histories of migrant labour and settler colonialism. We will examine, in particular, how Asian, black, and Indigenous bodies are positioned in relationships with technology, as well as how these bodies are imagined as forms of technology. We will also consider the relationships between writing, literary production, and “new” technologies.

Students will develop the critical thinking skills essential to university-level reading, writing, and critical analysis. Through the lectures, class discussions and tutorials, students will also be introduced to ways of thinking about cultural productions. 

Approaches to Literature
Term 2
MWF, 9:00 AM - 10:00 AM

The course description for this section of ENGL 110 is not yet available. Please contact the instructor directly for more information.

Approaches to Literature
Term 2
MWF, 11:00 AM - 12:00 PM

In this section of English 110, we will read literary texts depicting ghosts, the fantastic, and strange science. The course will teach you to think and write critically about literature at the university level. It will also introduce you to contemporary literary theories. We will examine a range of approaches to the interpretation of literature, including psychoanalytical, Marxist, feminist, and postcolonial, and use the theories to analyze the literature we study. Texts read will include Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein and Robert Louis Stevenson’s Strange Case of Doctor Jekyll and Mr. Hyde.

Approaches to Literature

Term 2

MWF, 12:00 PM - 1:00 PM

In this course you will learn about the interrelationships between literary genres (poetry, prose, drama, non-fiction) and media (orality, script, print, digital). All course materials are at  the UBC Bookstore, with the exception of the poetry selections, found at canvas.ubc.ca, which is where lecture notes and notices are posted. Some texts in this course contain adult language and situations.

Grading: in-class essay: 20%; take-home essay: 35%; exam: 35%; tutorial participation: 10%

Approaches to Literature
Term 2
MWF, 1:00 PM - 2:00 PM

Tales of horror and aberrant human (or non-human) behaviour form a consistent tradition from ancient times to the present. This section of English 110 will trace the history of what became known as “Gothic” literature in the 19th century, examining what human beings in general, and what particular historical periods, have considered most disturbing and abhorrent. We will consider the difficult problem of why we seem so attracted to themes and situations that should normally repel us. In keeping with the standard form of English 110, we will proceed through a series of texts under the headings of drama, poetry and fiction. Under drama, will be study Euripides’ Medea and Shakespeare’s Macbeth. Following an examination of poems by Coleridge, Tennyson, Poe and Rossetti, will be look at a selection of stories from The Oxford Book of Gothic Tales and the original Dracula novel by Bram Stoker. Evaluation will be based on a mid-term text, a final essay, a final exam and class participation.

Approaches to Literature
Term 2
MWF, 2:00 PM - 3:00 PM

"City Fictions" will be the focus of this section which will analyze the representation of cities in fiction, poetry and drama. Three cities will form the centre of the course: Rome, London and New York. Among the key texts will be Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar, Tony Kushner’s Angels in America, R.L. Stevenson’s Doctor Jekyll and Mr. Hyde and city poetry by Wordsworth, Whitman, Ezra Pound and Hart Crane.

Approaches to Literature
Term 1
TTh, 11:00 AM - 12:30 PM

Recent publications from Canada, England, or the U.S. will be on the menu.

Texts:

  • The Edible Woman (Margaret Atwood)
  • Trumpet (Jackie Kay),
  • McPoems (Billeh Nickerson)
  • Home of Sudden Service (Elizabeth Bachinsky)
  • Fences (August Wilson)

Approaches to Literature
Term 1
TTh, 12:30 PM - 2:00 PM

How do we define ourselves – as Canadians, as artists, as lovers, as survivors? These are some of the broad issues of identity and belonging we will explore through a selection of fiction, drama and poetry in this section of English 110.  We will consider ways in which individuals craft and perform the "selves" they wish to be, and the multiplicity of ways in which writers convey these identities through literary texts. To what extent do we control the person we become and to what extent are we shaped by our community? How meaningful are the concepts of ethnicity, gender and nationality in the creation of identity? How can a writer convey the complex and shifting nature of individual and group identity through the permanence of written discourse? Texts studied will include a novel (Indian Horse by Richard Wagamese), a play (The Rez Sisters by Tomson Highway), and a selection of short stories and poetry. Students will engage with concepts of genre and form in literature and will pursue hands-on practice of methods of literary analysis. You will be encouraged to develop independent critical responses to the works studied. Assessment will include two in-class essays, a term paper and a final examination.

Approaches to Literature
Term 1

MWF, 10:00-11:00 AM

This course uses speculative and science fiction to query the many ways in which writers imagine how societies and cultures might be... otherwise. Topics include othering/monsters, contact zones, utopia/dystopia, technoscience, time travel/alternative histories, gender and sexuality, war/conflict/peace. Writers include Ursula LeGuin, Philip K. Dick, H.G. Wells, Octavia Butler, Kurt Vonnegut, Ray Bradbury, Karen Tei Yamashita, others. Two papers, two exams, and credit for course participation.

Approaches to Literature
Term 2
TTh, 12:30 PM - 2:00 PM

The course description for this section of ENGL 110 is not yet available. Please contact the instructor directly for more information.

Approaches to Literature
Term 2
TTh, 2:00 PM - 3:30 PM

Rey: “You are a monster.”
Kylo Ren: “Yes, I am.”
Star Wars: The Last Jedi

“Deformed, unfinished, sent before my time into this breathing world”
Richard III 1.i

What is a monster? We know monsters from myths and legends, folktales, horror fiction and film. We know their variety: the grotesque, the beautiful, the terrifying, the pitiable, the sports of nature and the forces of evil. Dragons, werewolves, vampires, zombies, Frankenstein’s Creature, Mr. Hyde, the Joker, most of the characters in Penny Dreadful: they’re everywhere, from under the bed to the battlefield, and right into a great deal of literature. Which leaves us here: in this section of 110 we’ll focus on how literary texts use representations of monstrosity to say a variety of things.

We’ll look at excerpts from William Shakespeare’s Richard III (a play that both meditates on villainy and ambition, and demonizes its subject for Tudor audiences), then at Ian McKellen’s 1995 film adaptation, which shifts the setting to an alternate-reality 1930s England where fascism takes hold. Other core texts tentatively include Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley’s Frankenstein and Oscar Wilde’s The Picture of Dorian Gray, as well as selected short fiction and poetry.

Evaluation will be based on two in-class essays, a term paper, participation in discussion (in class and online), and an essay-based final examination.

Please check my blog at http://blogs.ubc.ca/drgmbaxter/ for updates concerning the course, its texts, and its requirements.

Approaches to Literature
Term 2

MWF, 1:00-2:00 PM

The course description for this section of ENGL 110 is not yet available. Please contact the instructor directly for more information.

Approaches to Non-fictional Prose
Term 1
MWF, 1:00 PM - 2:00 PM

This section of English 111 will study how writers use personal experience – their own or others’ – in life narratives (or “non-fiction prose”) to make meaning of those experiences and make interventions in public knowledge. The life narratives we’ll study this semester show how individual stories can work to resist dominant norms and stereotypes – for example, of mental illness – and offer personal perspectives on historical events that may challenge or disrupt official versions. We will read four book-length memoirs -- Born a Crime, by Trevor Noah; Girl, Interrupted, by Susanne Kaysen; Forgiveness: A Gift from My Grandparents, by Mark Sakamoto; Persepolis: A Story of Childhood by Marjane Satrapi – and several essays (TBD). Our discussions of these narratives will be informed by relevant scholarly conversations, and students will contribute to those conversations in a research paper as well as in two short analytical essays and a final exam.

Approaches to Non-fictional Prose
Term 2
MWF, 10:00 AM - 11:00 AM

In our heavily mediated world, senses of self and of place are becoming increasingly uncertain. In this course, we will examine the basic concepts behind and writing practices of literary non-fiction, focusing in particular on autobiography as a writing form. How do we try to write ourselves into place? How do we identify and document ourselves through writing? What are the demands of placing ourselves in particular discourses and locations? We will deal with ideas of the human subject and of the depiction of and address to others (and the creation of various kinds of community), with the complex relationships between art and fact, and with the interconnections of the graphic and spoken or written language. Questions of representation and self-fashioning will form a crucial part of our investigation of how non-fiction becomes literary work.

Literature and Criticism
Term 2
TTh, 11:00 AM - 12:30 PM

Why do we tell stories? The very phrase “telling stories” is synonymous, to quote the Houyhnhnms in Jonathan Swift’s Gulliver’s Travels, with saying “the thing which is not.” Yet most story-tellers are trying to articulate “the thing which is,” however they might define that in socio-political and/or aesthetic terms. In this course we will explore story-telling – our own and others’. What assumptions underlie our readings of stories and the numerous critical and theoretical approaches to literary interpretation? What does the popularization and commodification of literary works, such as the re-visioning of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland in every medium, tell us about the works themselves, the societies that produced them, our own society, and ourselves? What difference does it make if the “source texts” for a story are actual historical events? Some of the texts that we will be studying self-consciously question concepts of “story,” “history,” and “truth”; all raise questions about the nature of story-telling, interpretation, identity, and society.

Our authors and texts: Charlotte Brontë, Jane Eyre (Oxford World’s Classics); Lewis Carroll, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland (Broadview); Iris Murdoch, Under the Net (Penguin); Michael Ondaatje, Anil’s Ghost (Vintage); one play from the Frederic Wood Theatre 2020 season; a selection of poems by Sarah Howe, Roy Miki, John O’Donohue, and Arundhathi Subramaniam; a selection of student-choice twenty-first-century poems.

Reading and Writing about Literature
Term 1
MWF, 9:00 AM - 10:00 AM

What do we talk about when we talk about love? In this course we’ll ask this question in various ways by taking a look at how a variety of texts approach questions of loving, and writing about love—different kinds of love—in different ways. If love is constituted, in part, by the language used to describe it, how does the language of love stories shape how we perceive and experience it? How do our love stories shape our expectations and experiences of love? Do the metaphors we use shape the way we think about love? What do our conventional love narratives suggest about gender, sexuality, and marriage? How do individual experiences of love deviate from these narratives--and why should we care? Is love merely personal, intense, private or is it also socially and politically useful? What does literature have to say about this?

This course introduces you to the skills and practices of literary criticism by inviting you, and equipping you, to interrogate details of language and form, and to pull together and analyze research sources in order to support sound and interesting arguments, i.e. to “read” these primary texts in new and deeper ways. You will be invited to ask rich and provocative questions about literary texts, find and analyze research sources and write good, clear arguments. Lively engagement is a basic requirement. You will be asked to write two close readings and a research paper in this course. Texts are likely to include St. Exupery’s The Little Prince, David Chariandy’s Brother, Leanne Betasamosake Simpson’s Islands of Decolonial Love as well as contextual readings.

Reading and Writing about Literature
Term 1
MWF, 10:00 AM - 11:00 AM

Canadian identity “is less perplexed by the question ‘Who am I?’ than by some such riddle as ‘Where is here?’”   – Northrop Frye

“The city as we imagine it, the soft city of illusion, myth, aspiration, and nightmare, is as real, maybe more real, than the hard city one can locate on maps, in statistics, in monographs on urban sociology and demography and architecture.”  – Jonathan Raban

sizzling onions
sizzling onions dancing
in turmeric yellow
passing through the material barrier
and making their way to eternity.
who would have thought paradise was the smell in one’s hair?
-- “fried onions” by Pardis Pahlavanlu

 

Our class will focus on local literature that asks the larger questions: How do we belong in place? How do we make sense of here?  How does elsewhere function here? How does place influence us? How do stories constitute us?  How do we consume here?

English 100, Reading and Writing About Literature, equally focuses on close reading, theoretical reading strategies, essays about literature and the ideas in literature, and writing.  Our class will follow a MWF, Text, Context, and Writing format, each day mostly dedicated to each.

We will entertain human geography, performativity, semiotic, Canadian, postcolonial, feminist, and postmodern approaches to these texts, but ultimately this class will encourage student-centric critical and creative thinking combined with clear, precise, logical, thoughtful writing.

Required Texts:

  • Sustenance: Writers from BC and Beyond on the Subject of Food, ed. Rachel Rose
  • Custom Course Pack: selection of short stories (found in the Bookstore under “Roberts”)
  • Canvas Coursepage
  • UBC Library Coursepage

Reading and Writing about Literature
Term 1
MWF, 11:00 AM - 12:00 PM

English 100 offers a writing-intensive introduction to the discipline of literary studies through the exploration of texts in their critical contexts: it focuses on foundational skills in literary analysis and scholarly research. This section highlights fiction and poetry inspired by the First World War (1914-1918). The blasted landscapes, shattering losses, social upheavals and protracted legacies of this conflict impact writers from different countries (Britain, America, Canada and Ireland) and distinct generations (participants and descendants). In particular, we will examine selected poems (1918) by Wilfred Owen; and three novels, namely The Sun Also Rises (1926) by Ernest Hemingway; The Wars (1977) by Timothy Findley; and A Long Long Way (2005) by Sebastian Barry. The issues of trauma, mourning, memory and history shaping modern and contemporary controversies on war and society will organize our studies of celebrated texts. Critical readings and audio-visual materials will guide our conversations in the class room. Students will be expected to contribute to discussions as they develop analytic and synthetic skills in reading and writing about literature through the investigation of formal features, relevant contexts and academic discourses. In addition to several writing assignments, requirements for this course include participation and a final examination.

 

Reading and Writing about Literature
Term 1
MWF, 12:00 PM - 1:00 PM

Focused around literary texts in their critical and theoretical contexts, ENGL 100 is a course in academic writing that fulfils the first-year component of the Faculty of Arts Writing Requirement.

In this section of English 100 we will study a selection of poetry from the Renaissance up to the present (see the provisional list below).  Since one purpose of the course is to introduce students to literature’s various critical approaches, we will also examine scholarly articles (available online) on some of the assigned poetry.  In both their proposal for the research essay and the essay itself, students will be expected not only to offer their own interpretations of a poem not discussed in class, but also to cite, demonstrate their familiarity with, and above all respond to a minimum number of secondary sources.  Ideally, then, this course will teach students the skills they need to write research essays in upper-level English courses.

Assignments: two in-class essays (each worth 15%), proposal for research essay (15%), research essay (25%), final exam (30%)

Texts: The Broadview Introduction to Literature: Poetry, 2nd edition (Broadview Press); Reading and Writing about Literature: A Portable Guide, 4th edition (Bedford/St. Martin’s)

A provisional list of poems: Shakespeare, “Shall I compare thee to a summer’s day?”; John Donne, “The Flea”; William Blake, “The Chimney Sweeper”; John Keats, “La Belle Dame sans Merci: A Ballad”; Emily Dickinson, “My Life had stood—a Loaded Gun— ”; Christina Rossetti, “Goblin Market”; Ezra Pound, “The River-Merchant’s Wife: A Letter”; T.S. Eliot, “The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock”; W.H. Auden, “Musée des Beaux Arts”; Adrienne Rich, “Aunt Jennifer’s Tigers”; Margaret Atwood, “Death of a Young Son by Drowning”; Jackie Kay, “In My Country”

Reading and Writing about Literature
Term 1
MWF, 1:00 PM - 2:00 PM

The course description for this section of ENGL 100 is not yet available. Please contact the instructor directly for more information.

Reading and Writing about Literature
Term 1
MWF , 2:00 PM - 3:00 PM

What, exactly, is a fairy tale? Why do some remain popular even two or three hundred years after they were first published? And why do modern writers so often return to the form, sometimes to rewrite old tales and sometimes to compose brand-new ones? In this course, we will address these questions by reading and discussing a variety of classic tales by the Brothers Grimm, Charles Perrault, and Jeanne-Marie Leprince de Beaumont as well as modern versions of those tales by Emma Donoghue and Francesca Lia Block, among others. In lectures and discussions we’ll consider how fairy tales have been adapted to meet the needs of distinct historical periods, and how different critical approaches to the same text can yield entirely different—even competing—interpretations.

Reading and Writing about Literature
Term 1
TTh, 9:30 AM - 11:00 AM

This section of English 100 will introduce you to the scholarly practice of literary criticism as we explore of the role of emotion in literature. How does literature move us to feel and think in new and sometimes intense ways? What does literature do to us and for us? How and why does literature matter? In our exploration, we’ll encounter strategies writers employ to express affect and create the ground for communal feeling, and we’ll see how stories can move a reader through sympathy to social justice. We’ll also examine how words attempt to embody love and grief, or capture the sentiment of the times. Texts include selected poems by Emily Dickinson, as well as three works of prose: Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl, an autobiography by Harriet Jacobs; Written on the Body, a novel by Jeannette Winterson; and Between the World and Me, an epistolary book by Ta-Nehisi Coates. We will deepen our understanding of these texts and their contexts with critical readings and theory on affect and emotion in literature.

Reading and Writing about Literature
Term 1
TTh, 11:00 AM - 12:30 PM

This course develops foundational skills in literary analysis and scholarly research through a selection of texts organized around the object of the letter. In epistolary prose, short fiction, and poetry, we will read the letter as plot device—the misdirected, lost, blackmailing, or love letter—and as form: a way to think about audience and rhetorical style. How does the act of writing a letter reveal or mask the personality of the character or author? What happens when words—or bodies—miss their mark, or circulate out of control? How have technological developments, from mail coaches to text messaging, changed the way we communicate? Primary texts, which will be supplemented by critical scholarship, include Frances Burney’s Evelina (1778), Carolyn Smart’s Careen (2015), Ta-Nehisi Coates’s Between the World and Me (2015), and short stories by Edgar Allan Poe and Sir Arthur Conan Doyle.

This enquiry into the letter as a form will allow us to think about our own relationship to writing: who we write for and how we communicate clearly. In this course, you will develop your writing style, research methods, and literary analysis through a series of written assignments, including close readings, a research paper, and a final exam.

Reading and Writing about Literature
Term 1
TTh, 2:00 PM - 3:30 PM

The course description for this section of ENGL 100 is not yet available. Please contact the instructor directly for more information.

Reading and Writing about Literature
Term 2
MWF, 10:00 AM - 11:00 AM

The course description for this section of ENGL 100 is not yet available. Please contact the instructor directly for more information.

Reading and Writing about Literature
Term 2
MWF, 11:00 AM - 12:00 PM

Focused around literary texts in their critical and theoretical contexts, ENGL 100 is a course in academic writing that fulfils the first-year component of the Faculty of Arts Writing Requirement.

In this section of English 100 we will study a selection of poetry from the Renaissance up to the present (see the provisional list below).  Since one purpose of the course is to introduce students to literature’s various critical approaches, we will also examine scholarly articles (available online) on some of the assigned poetry.  In both their proposal for the research essay and the essay itself, students will be expected not only to offer their own interpretations of a poem not discussed in class, but also to cite, demonstrate their familiarity with, and above all respond to a minimum number of secondary sources.  Ideally, then, this course will teach students the skills they need to write research essays in upper-level English courses.

Assignments: two in-class essays (each worth 15%), proposal for research essay (15%), research essay (25%), final exam (30%)

Texts: The Broadview Introduction to Literature: Poetry, 2nd edition (Broadview Press); Reading and Writing about Literature: A Portable Guide, 4th edition (Bedford/St. Martin’s)

A provisional list of poems: Shakespeare, “Shall I compare thee to a summer’s day?”; John Donne, “The Flea”; William Blake, “The Chimney Sweeper”; John Keats, “La Belle Dame sans Merci: A Ballad”; Emily Dickinson, “My Life had stood—a Loaded Gun— ”; Christina Rossetti, “Goblin Market”; Ezra Pound, “The River-Merchant’s Wife: A Letter”; T.S. Eliot, “The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock”; W.H. Auden, “Musée des Beaux Arts”; Adrienne Rich, “Aunt Jennifer’s Tigers”; Margaret Atwood, “Death of a Young Son by Drowning”; Jackie Kay, “In My Country”

Reading and Writing about Literature
Term 2
MWF , 12:00 PM - 1:00 PM

Queer literature has reimagined (and continues to reimagine) history in the most inventive ways. Writers have found or invented queer and trans ancestors in the distant past (9th-century Xi’an, 6th-century Britain, 1740s New York), imagined queer kinships between past and present, and used experimental forms to queer (in the sense of “trouble” or “bend”) apparently straightforward narratives and genres. In this writing-intensive course, you will read queer historical fictions alongside the source material that influenced them.

Reading and Writing about Literature
Term 2
MWF, 1:00 PM - 2:00 PM

 

The course description for this section of ENGL 100 is not yet available. Please contact the instructor directly for more information.

Reading and Writing about Literature
Term 2
TTh, 9:30 AM - 11:00 AM

This section will focus on contemporary literature (that is, Canadian, UK or American publications from the past few decades). In the coming months, specific titles and a theme will be posted.

Reading and Writing about Literature
Term 2
TTh, 11:00 AM - 12:30 PM

What does reading literature unlock for us—emotionally, intellectually, or socially? Why do we sometimes approach literary works as if they’re keeping secrets? What is the difference between surface reading and suspicious reading, and when is each useful? Whose stories have been hidden, and how do they escape to circulate in the world? This course teaches foundational skills in literary analysis and scholarly research by approaching these questions through texts concerned with captivity and escape, both physical and figurative. Primary works, which will be supplemented by critical scholarship, may include selections from the memoir The Interesting Narrative of Olaudah Equiano (1789); Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë (1847); The Importance of Being Earnest by Oscar Wilde (1895); Anatomy of Keys, Steven Price’s poetic biography of Houdini (2006); and poetry by Warsan Shire and Billy Ray Belcourt.

Critical inquiries into these readings will form the basis for developing your own literary analysis, research methods, and writing style, through a series of written assignments including close readings, a research paper, and a final exam.

Reading and Writing about Literature
Term 2
TTh, 12:30 PM - 2:00 PM

“What is a ghost? A tragedy condemned to repeat itself time and again? An instant of pain, perhaps. Something dead which still seems to be alive. An emotion suspended in time. Like a blurred photograph. Like an insect trapped in amber.” -- The Devil’s Backbone (dir. Guillermo Del Toro)

Where is the fascination, even when the deepest mysteries of the universe are being scientifically unlocked, in stories of haunted houses? What accounts for the lure, and even the enjoyment, of tales of terror and horror, even in the 21st century? This course examines the Gothic influence in texts where collisions of past and present, and implications of the uncanny, allow fascinating investigations of social codes and their transgression.

Core texts tentatively include Shirley Jackson’s The Haunting of Hill House, Alan Garner’s The Owl Service, Kazuo Ishiguro’s Never Let Me Go, Sarah Waters’s The Little Stranger, and The Others (dir. Alejandro Amenábar). Through readings in current criticism and theory, we will develop strategies for textual analysis in literary and cultural studies. We will also consider the difficulty, if not impossibility, of reaching a “fixed” or consensus reading of any text. You will write two short essays, a term paper requiring secondary research, and a final examination, and will contribute to in-class and online discussion.

Please check my blog at http://blogs.ubc.ca/drgmbaxter/ for updates concerning the course, its texts, and its requirements.

Reading and Writing about Literature
Term 2
TTh, 2:00 PM - 3:30 PM

The course description for this section of ENGL 100 is not yet available. Please contact the instructor directly for more information.

Strategies for University Writing

NOTE: THIS IS A GENERAL DESCRIPTION FOR ALL SECTIONS OF ENGL 112.

Through the study and application of the principles of university-level discourse and with emphasis on the specific genre of academic writing, this course will introduce students to critical reading and university-level writing. In lectures and discussions, instructors will focus on the rhetorical principles and strategies central to university-level discourse. Students will examine methods for discovering and arranging ideas, and they will consider ways in which style is determined by rhetorical situation and scholarly audiences. English 112 is not a remedial course. Students with serious deficiencies in their writing should seek early and expert tutorial help.

Note: This course is required of students who intend to enter the Faculties of Commerce and the Schools of Nursing and Physical Education. It is also recommended by a number of other faculties
and schools. Students should check the current UBC Calendar for further information about the first-year English requirements for particular faculties and schools.

Course Requirements: regular attendance and participation in class activities; completion of a minimum of four essays (two to be written in class); and a final examination.
Final Examination: All students in English 112 will write a 3-hour final examination at the end of the course. The examination will test critical reading and writing skills by asking students to write two clear, coherent, well-developed essays: one analysing a passage of university-level prose in a way that demonstrates the specific critical skills learned in class, and one writing a scholarly essay in response to specific critical readings studied in class.

Distribution of Marks: course work (essays and exercises), 70 marks; final examination, 30 marks.

Texts: Reading lists for individual sections of the course will be available in the Language and Literature section of the UBC Bookstore in mid-August for Term 1 courses and mid-November for
Term 2 courses.

Language Myths
Term 2
MWF, 2:00 PM - 3:00 PM

What can we believe of what we hear and read about language?

Is language change bad?

Do some people have “good grammar”?


Does language shape thought and/or culture?

Are young people changing the language for the worse?


Is texting destroying the language?

Is learning a language easier for kids?


Does your ability to learn a language reflect your intelligence?

Is all thought linguistic?


Where in your brain is language located?

Do bilinguals have an advantage or are they disadvantaged?

In this course, we critically examine a broad range of commonly held beliefs about language and the relation of language to the brain and cognition, learning, society, change and evolution. Students read a series of short scholarly articles in order to understand language myths, the purpose for their existence, and their validity (or not). We use science and common sense as tools in our process of “myth-busting”.

Course evaluation is based on a midterm and a final examination, a written project (pairs or groups), participation and attendance, including “Linguistics outside the classroom”, and low-stakes short weekly writing. For the project, students select a language myth discussed in popular media (online, newspaper, etc.). Based on scholarly readings concerning the myth as well as material covered in class, they “bust” or confirm the myth.

This course is an excellent introduction for students contemplating  the English Language Major, the Combined English Language and Literature Major, or the Combined Language and Literature Honours. It is also appropriate for more advanced students.

This course in cross-listed as Linguistics 140 and is co-taught by instructors from the English and Linguistics Departments.

Note: This course does not fulfill the university writing requirements or the literature requirement in the Faculty of Arts.

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