Undergraduate Course Descriptions, 2022 Winter

INSTRUCTOR: MCLACHLAN, TORIN
3 credits
Term 1, MWF 0900 - 1000

Literary Criticism: A Sleepwalker’s Guide

What is “literary criticism” and how is it related to political and social life? What do English professors do when they’re not teaching? How and why do we constantly invent new ways to talk about old books?

This course offers students a chance to preview and practice the research and writing skills that go into upper-year and graduate-level studies in English literature, by studying one text over the entire semester: Djuna Barnes’ Nightwood. At the centre of the text is our guide and sleepwalker, Robin Vote, who carves a path of loss and independence through multiple lovers. Jeanette Winterson’s preface to the 2008 New Directions edition of Nightwood calls it “a bleak picture of love between women” (xi), though since being published in 1936, it has been read by successive generations of scholars as an example of many different kinds of writing: carnivalesque, gothic, psychoanalytic, metafictional, modernist, postmodernism, lesbian, posthuman. Surveying key trends in the scholarship on one novel will help us question the ways that literature maps onto life: What happens when a fake doctor, a trapeze artist, and a baron haunted by the past walk into a bar?

Our semester-long study of Nightwood will foreground its many critical contexts and consider several key ideas about modernism and modernity along the way. The course is writing intensive, and the assignments – which include critical peer responses – will build step-by-step towards a required final essay. We will practice finding and analyzing secondary sources through the UBC Library and participate in structured in-class discussion often. Sleepwalkers are, of course, welcome.

Required Text: Barnes, Djuna. Nightwood. New Directions, 2008.

INSTRUCTOR: GIFFEN, SHEILA
3 credits
Term 1, MWF `1000 - 1100

Between You and I: Exploring Selfhood in Contemporary U.S. Literature

What makes ‘you’ you? How does the ‘I’ in speech and writing relate to the living person? How do markers of identity and belonging come alive in the space between ‘you’ and ‘I’? This course asks how poets and fiction writers experiment with language to explore selfhood and relationality. Far from the unique expression of individuality and interiority, writers are preoccupied with how our sense of self is shaped by politics, conceptions of nationality and citizenship, and the imprint of mass media. In this course, we will explore these topics through contemporary American writing that comments on life under late-stage global capitalism. Guided by close readings of texts by Patricia Lockwood, Claudia Rankine, and Ling Ma, we will consider how writing can provide solace and sublimity faced with compounding crises of familial loss, state violence, and pandemic apocalypse. These authors variously track the effect of globalization, racial capitalism, and state governance on our social, psychic, and political lives. They do so by creatively deploying different literary genres and forms—from the confessional lyric, to the social media prose poem, to the speculative fiction novel.

This course will also introduce students to the basics of academic research and writing, with an emphasis on how to make arguments about literature. With reference to secondary readings on our three main authors, we will take up different stylistic approaches to writing about poetry and prose, including: book review essays, academic literary criticism, and collaborative research clusters. Together, we will engage in conversations about texts in their social and political contexts and ask what writing can do –to express relations of self and other, to build critical consciousness, and to make a world that is liveable.

Required Texts: Patricia Lockwood, No One is Talking About This (2021), Claudia Rankine, Citizen (2014), Ling Ma, Severance (2018)

INSTRUCTOR: BAXTER, GISELE
3 credits
Term 1, MWF 1100 - 1200

Haunted Houses

“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 include Henry James, The Turn of the Screw; Shirley Jackson, The Haunting of Hill House; Sarah Waters, The Little Stranger; Helen Oyeyemi, White is for Witching; and The Others (dir. Alejandro Amenábar), as well as Gardner and Diaz, Reading and Writing About Literature (5th edition). 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.

Evaluation will be based on a midterm essay, a term paper requiring secondary academic research, a final examination, and participation in discussion.

Keep checking my blog (https://blogs.ubc.ca/drgmbaxter/) for updates concerning texts and requirements.

INSTRUCTOR: SHARPE, JAE
3 credits
Term 1, MWF 1200 - 1300

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

This course offers an introduction to literary studies and the disciplines of academic reading and writing. In additional to the assigned texts, we will be reading essays and scholarly articles in order to introduce students to different critical approaches. This section’s theme is about American literature of the late 20th century (from approximately 1950 to 2001), and we will consider how various texts attempted to grapple with such historical events as the aftermath of World War II, the Civil Rights movement, the Cold War, and the development of nuclear weapons.

Texts are likely to include Joan Didion’s Play It As It Lays, Toni Morrison’s Song of Solomon, Denis Johnson’s Jesus’ Son,Sam Shepard’s Buried Child,  and selections from Joan Didion’s Slouching Towards Bethlehem, Franz Wright’s Ill Lit, and Raymond Carver’s What We Talk About When We Talk About Love.

 

INSTRUCTOR: ZEITLIN, MICHAEL
3 credits
Term 1, MWF 1:00p-2:00p

This course offers a writing-intensive introduction to the disciplines of literary studies through the exploration of texts in their critical and theoretical contexts. The course fulfils the first-year component of the Faculty of Arts Writing and Research Requirement and is open only to students in the Faculty of Arts. The course is recommended for students intending to become English majors. Essays are required.

Primary texts will include the following:

  • Ernest Hemingway, In Our Time
  • Frederick Douglass, Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, an American Slave
  • Wallace Stevens, The Palm at the End of the Mind
  • Sylvia Plath, The Bell Jar
  • Virginia Woolf, To the Lighthouse
  • Edward Albee, Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?

In our writing assignments (short essays, a final exam) and classroom discussions we will practice the art of interpretation and close reading.

INSTRUCTOR: MCCORMACK, BRENDAN
3 credits
Term 1, MWF 2:00-3:00p

Storying Conflict: Narrative in Canadian Literary Contexts

According to narratologist H. Porter Abbott, “the representation of conflict in narrative provides a way for a culture to talk to itself about, and possibly resolve, conflicts that threaten to fracture it (or at least make living difficult).” In an increasingly polarized, fractured, and wounded world beset by crises both global and local, Canada remains, as it has always been, a site of struggle and a space of multiple conflicts. In this section, we will explore contemporary Canadian and Indigenous literatures in multiple genres (short stories, poetry, a novel, and life writing) that share an interest in turning to literature and storytelling as creative spaces to ask the hard questions and explore conflicts. Some of these texts take on challenges that are public and political: pandemic, climate change, medical ethics, (neo)colonialism, racism, and inequity, among multiple other concerns and injustices. Others explore the intimacies of private crises over relationships, identity, responsibilities, family, belonging, and community. All, in fact, do both. Approaching literature as an art where private life and public history merge, we will turn to a variety of Canadian texts to investigate how conflict—whether personal, communal, national, and/or global in scale— structures narrative. How and why do writers narrate conflict? What does literature offer to the difficult conversations prompted by conflict and crisis? How do different forms and genres of writing function to engage readers in these conversations? We’ll take up these and other questions prompted by narratives that invite us to consider the different ways literature engages dilemmas, embraces uncertainty, opens debate, entertains ambiguity, asks “what if?”, and locates hope.

Want to get reading this summer? Start with Cherie Dimaline’s The Marrow Thieves.

N.B.: The texts we will read emerge from Canadian contexts and narrate lived and imagined experiences that ask us to critically consider, among other things, the politics of history, identity, gender, sexuality, colonialism, race, diaspora, multiculturalism, belonging, nationhood, land, Indigeneity, and ecology. Please be aware that some readings openly address material from these contexts that can be challenging, including racial, colonial, and gendered violence.

About ENGL100 and Course Objectives

ENGL 100 is a writing-intensive introduction to the disciplines of literary studies through the exploration of texts in their critical and theoretical contexts, and is recommended for students intending to become English majors. In lectures, workshops, and group activities with peers, we will work on developing the skills needed to think critically, read inquisitively, and write persuasively about literary texts. You will learn and practice methods of textual analysis, research, and essay composition. Special focus will be placed on learning the foundations of narrative theory and cultivating the skills of close reading, with particular attention to the relationship between form and content in literary texts. By the end of the course, you will (a) be familiar with a range of narrative forms and literary genres used by contemporary authors in Canada; (b) understand some of the cultural, political, historical, and theoretical contexts that inform these literatures and their interpretation; (c) appreciate the ways form and style shape content to produce meaning in literary texts; (d) understand how to find, evaluate, and use research in literary criticism; and (e) have facility with academic essay-writing in the English discipline.

INSTRUCTOR: FOX, LORCAN
3 credits
Term 1, TTh 0930 - 1100

In this section of English 227 we will study an assortment of short stories by authors of various nationalities and historical eras. After briefly exploring reasons for the emergence of the modern short story we will proceed chronologically by examining short fiction written over the span of roughly a century, from the late nineteenth to the early twenty-first centuries. Apart from identifying each story’s literary elements, we will note how it may reflect one or more literary movements: for instance, realism. How to define the term “short story” is a question that will almost certainly arise from our close study of so broad a range of short fiction.

The short stories we study in the course will be selected from the following list:

Kate Chopin, “The Story of an Hour”; Guy de Maupassant, “The False Gems”; Charlotte Perkins Gilman, “The Yellow Wallpaper”; James Joyce, “The Dead”; Franz Kafka, “Metamorphosis”; Katherine Mansfield, “The Garden Party”; Ernest Hemingway, “A Clean, Well-Lighted Place”; Chinua Achebe, “Dead Men’s Path”; Alice Munro, “Friend of My Youth”; Alistair MacLeod, “As Birds Bring Forth the Sun”; Raymond Carver, “Cathedral”; Margaret Atwood, “Happy Endings”; Thomas King, “A Short History of Indians in Canada”; Kazuo Ishiguro, “A Family Supper”; Jhumpa Lahiri, “Interpreter of Maladies”; Hassan Blasim, “The Nightmare of Carlos Fuentes”; Madeleine Thien, “Simple Recipes”

Text: The Broadview Introduction to Literature: Short Fiction, 2nd ed. (Broadview)

Course requirements: two quizzes, each worth 20%; research essay (1500 words), 30%; final exam, 30%

INSTRUCTOR: CULBERT, JOHN
3 credits
Term 1, TTh 1100 - 1230

 

INSTRUCTOR: SHEPPARD, REBECCA
3 credits
Term 1, TTh 1230 - 1400

 

INSTRUCTOR: JACKSON, SARA-NELLE
3 credits
Term 1, TTh 1400 - 1530

The Ends of the Earth: Imagining Terrestrial Futures

The purpose of this course is to explore and engage with contemporary environmental concerns by asking critical questions about the relationship between humans and the planet we live on. These questions include: Besides the contemporary economic view of land as property or natural resource, how have humans imagined our relationship to our environment? What are the boundaries between humans and earth/Earth? Why do some texts use environmental imagery as foreboding and apocalyptic, while others use it to figure utopian, post-apocalyptic resurgence? How does our language about environment — “the natural world,” for example — shape how we perceive it?

Taking literary texts in their critical and theoretical contexts, this section will study representations of the relationship between humans and Earth, with special attention to speculative fiction. We will analyze, engage with, and respond to a variety of texts in a variety of media, including a long poem (Robert Kroetsch’s Seed Catalogue), a selection of short comics (from Elizabeth LaPensée and Michael Sheyahshe’s Moonshot: The Indigenous Comics Collection, Vol. 3), a novel (Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein), and a video game (Four Quarters’ Loop Hero). We will also read complementary critical and creative pieces. As we engage with these texts, and with other scholars’ responses to them, students will develop strategies for writing critical, specific, and significant literary analysis.

INSTRUCTOR: AL-KASSIM, DINA
3 credits
Term 1, TThR1530 - 1700

INSTRUCTOR: FOX, LORCAN
3 credits
Term 2, MWF 0900 - 1000

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.

Course requirements: 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); Reading and Writing about Literature: A Portable Guide, 5th 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”; Christina Rossetti, “Goblin Market”; W.B. Yeats, “The Second Coming”; 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”

INSTRUCTOR: ROLSTON, SIMON
3 credits
Term 2, MWF 1000 - 1100

INSTRUCTOR: PARTRIDGE, STEPHEN
3 credits
Term 2, MWF 1100 - 1200

 

INSTRUCTOR: SCHOLES, JUDITH
3 credits
Term 2, MWF 1200 - 1300

Dear Reader

Many works of literature ask something of their readers; the texts we are studying this term all ask their readers to see differently. They alert us to things we have, perhaps, never seen, provoking recognition, understanding, and even empathy. In our reading and writing this term we will ask: how might literature affect readers? How do literary texts encourage readers to think and feel? How do they shift our perspective, decenter us, or move us into new relation with ourselves and others? Reading across genre (poetry, fiction, nonfiction) and time (1860-2018), we will focus our analysis on the following works: selected poems by Emily Dickinson; Harriet Jacobs’ slave narrative, Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl; A. S. Byatt’s novel Possession; and Terrance Hayes’ collection of sonnets, American Sonnets for My Past and Future Assassin.

We will deepen our understanding of these texts and their contexts with scholarly articles that explore the historical production and circulation of texts, literature’s role in the creation of empathy, and the affective dimensions of the reading experience. Over the term, students will be able to develop their own conclusions about literary address and the role readers play in the construction of literature, while developing their skills as academic writers.

INSTRUCTOR: GOODING, RICK
3 credits
Term 2, MWF 1300 - 1400

 

INSTRUCTOR: SMILGES, LOGAN
3 credits
Term 2, MWF 1400 - 1500

 

 

INSTRUCTOR: BAIN, KIM
3 credits
Term 2, TTh 0930 - 1100

 

 

INSTRUCTOR: DEER, GLENN
3 credits
Term 2, TTh 1100 - 1230

 

 

INSTRUCTOR: BRIGGS, MARLENE
3 credits
Term 2, TTh 1230 - 1400

Literature of the First World War: Comparative Approaches

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). We will read 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. Students will develop analytic and synthetic skills in reading and writing about literature through the investigation of relevant contexts, formal features, and academic discourses. In addition to several writing assignments, the requirements for this course may include a final examination.

INSTRUCTOR: TE PUNGA SOMERVILLE, ALICE
3 credits
Term 2, TTh 1400 - 1530

Indigenous Reading and Writing at the Edge of an Ocean

What happens when we think about Vancouver not as a city on the West Coast of a continent but as a city on the East Coast of an ocean? How can engaging with creative and critical writing by Indigenous people enable us to rethink, remap, and reimagine? What does it mean to be Indigenous – here, there, anywhere? How are Indigenous writers thinking about some of the most pressing issues of 2023: the climate crisis, social cohesion and justice, Indigenous rights, racism, colonialism/ capitalism, falling in love?

This course will focus on a wide range of short texts: poems, short fiction, short films, essays, blogposts. Students will also read texts of your choosing that connect our class discussions and readings with your own communities and networks. Evaluation will include short and long writing and research tasks, a reading log, a short presentation, and active participation.

INSTRUCTOR: POTTER, TIFFANY
3 credits
Term 1, MWF 0900 - 1000

400 Years of Asking the Big Questions

There will be shipwrecks, magic, mad scientists, beast-people, and a garden party. As we read stories of wrecks and disasters—structural, personal, and social— we will consider the significance of the ways in which these stories ask some of the big questions with which human beings have struggled for centuries: What makes us human and not animal? What is human nature, and is it really natural? What about gender, race, and other kinds of difference? Who has power and why? Do we just reflect reality with the stories we tell ourselves, or are we actually creating reality? Along with substantial work on poetry, this section of English 110 will focus on one play, one novel, and a group of short stories that engage in different ways how people respond to circumstances that challenge what they thought was “natural” or “universal.”

This course introduces students to the analytical skills and critical thinking essential to university-level literary reading, thinking and writing. In large lectures and 30-student Friday discussion groups, students pursue hands-on practice of methods of literary analysis. Please note that this is not a writing class (that’s ENGL 100 or WRDS 150): we’ll spend our time on fabulous literature rather than essay writing technicals.

Want a head start this summer? Choose HG Wells’ creepy mad scientist novel, The Island of Dr. Moreau or Shakespeare’s classic shipwreck+magic play, The Tempest. You can see videos of different productions of Tempest for free through the UBC library or stream the great 2010 film starring Helen Mirren and Djimon Hounsou (but take a pass on the really really terrible Island of Dr Moreau movie, trust me!).

INSTRUCTOR: LUGER, MOBERLEY
3 credits
Term 1, MWF 1000 - 1100

What can Literature do?: Counternarratives of the 21st Century

Scientists use data—gathered through experimentation, for example, or measurement—to discover and interpret the world around them. What do literary scholars use? What kind of “data” is a graphic narrative, a novel, or a poem? And what can the study of literature tell us about how we interpret the world we live in? In particular, what might we learn from literature that we can’t learn by other means?

The texts on this course include local and global stories written in this century. They will show us contemporary lives lived in different corners of the world—for example, a Pakistani university student in New York, an Indigenous hockey player in Ontario. These are personal stories about public events, and they are the stories that have generally been less discovered, measured, or recorded. They reveal the sometimes invisible, even erased, narratives and lives that lurk behind the headlines or history books. They invite us to ask, who gets to speak and who may be silenced? What kind of knowledge does literature give us access to—and what should we do with that knowledge?

Possible texts include The Best We Could Do by Thi Bui, The Reluctant Fundamentalist by Mohsin Hamid, Indian Horse by Richard Wagamese, Injun by Jordan Abel.

INSTRUCTOR: MCNEILLY, KEVIN
3 credits
Term 1, MWF 1100 - 1200

Belonging

In our heavily-mediated, pandemic-stricken world, senses of self and of place have become increasingly fraught and uncertain. In this course, we will investigate how various kinds of literary texts—poetry, the novel, multi-media collage, film, comics, the lyric essay—confront questions of human belonging. How do we write ourselves into and out of place? How do we identify and document ourselves creatively through writing? What are the demands of placing ourselves in particular discourses and locations? We will deal with ideas of the human subject and the depiction of others; with the creation of various forms of community; with the complex relationships between art and lived realities; and with the interconnections of the performative and the graphic with spoken or written language. Questions of representation and self-fashioning will form a crucial part of our investigations of how literacy, agency and community constitute themselves. Some of the readings on this course contain material that students may find challenging and unsettling. Core texts for this section include Ms. Marvel: No Normal by G. Willow Wilson and Adrian Alphona, Geography III: Poems by Elizabeth Bishop, Lives of Girls and Women by Alice Munro, Findings by Kathleen Jamie, and Citizen: An American Lyric by Claudia Rankine, as well as a short film directed by Alanis Obomsawin.

INSTRUCTOR: MOTA, MIGUEL
3 credits
Term 1, MWF 1200 - 1300

Identity and Place

This section of ENGL 110 will focus on issues of identity and place. How does place (geographical, social, psychological, textual) shape our identities, how we imagine ourselves as human beings in the world? And how does literature both define and mediate the relationship between identity and place? In our readings, we will address questions of class, gender, sexuality, 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 (Ayub Khan-Din’s East Is East and Tomson Highway’s The Rez Sisters), short stories (by Angela Carter, Alice Munro, William Faulkner, and Haruki Murakami), and a film, Lee Chang-dong’s Burning, an adaptation of the stories by Faulkner and Murakami).

INSTRUCTOR: BAXTER, GISELE
3 credits
Term 1, MWF 1300 - 1400

Literary Monsters and Monstrous Literature

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, Dorian Gray, the Joker, Hannibal Lecter, Marisa Coulter, many of the characters in The Walking Dead or Game of Thrones: they’re everywhere, from under the bed to the house next door 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 across the genres use representations of monstrosity in ways that inspire both terror and horror, as well as (let’s be honest) fascination and even enjoyment.

We’ll look at William Shakespeare’s Richard III (a play that meditates on villainy and ambition in demonizing its subject for Tudor audiences, yet still fascinates contemporary ones) and at Ian McKellen’s 1995 film adaptation, which shifts the setting to an alternate-reality 1930s England where fascism takes hold. We will also consider various stage and screen adaptations as approaches to the play, including recent ones using race and gender-diverse casting, and casting as Richard actors who are themselves physically disabled or disfigured. Other core texts include two novels: Oscar Wilde’s The Picture of Dorian Gray, Shirley Jackson’s We Have Always Lived in the Castle, as well as selected poetry (with a focus on the sonnet form).

Evaluation will be based on two timed essays, a home paper, and a final exam, plus participation in discussion. Each week (except where holidays and timed essays take place) I will deliver two lectures to the whole class, and you will have one small-group meeting with one of our Teaching Assistants.

Keep checking my blog (https://blogs.ubc.ca/drgmbaxter/) for updates concerning texts and requirements.

INSTRUCTOR: TBA
3 credits
Term 1, TTh 0930 - 1100

 

 

INSTRUCTOR: JAMES, SUZANNE
3 credits
Term 2, MWF 0900 - 1000

Defining the Self

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 (Brother by David Chariandy), a play (The Rez Sisters by Tomson Highway), and a selection of short stories and poetry. In lectures and seminars, students will engage with concepts of genre and form in literature and will pursue hands-on practice of methods of literary analysis. Students 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.

INSTRUCTOR: CAVELL, RICHARD
3 credits
Term 2, MWF 1100 - 1200

Literature and Media

This course explores the relationships between literature and media, introducing students to the role of media in the understanding of literature through a focus on an international reading list that highlights our relationship to media in contemporary social settings.

INSTRUCTOR: HUDSON, NICHOLAS
3 credits
Term 2, MWF 1200 - 1300

The Gothic in Literary History

Although the modern term “gothic” was not coined until the late eighteenth century, 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 these tales of horror in drama, poetry and prose fiction (both short stories and the novel) in the European and American literary traditions. We will find that from classical Greece to the present, theatre-goers and readers have been horrified by a fairly consistent set of themes and tropes (figurative images). These themes and tropes relate to a wide range of concerns from deviant sexual behavior, confusions of gender, dysfunctional family relationships, the fear of foreigners, human relations with the natural world, and fears of political or social upheaval.

Texts: Euripides, Medea; Shakespeare, Macbeth; Stoker, Dracula; Baldick, Oxford Book of Gothic Tales; a selection of gothic poetry

 

INSTRUCTOR: ROBERT, ROUSE
3 credits
Term 2, MWF 1300 - 1400

Environmental Reading

As we enter the third decade of the twenty-first century, the impact of the human race on the global climate is increasingly undeniable. From the beginning of the European Industrial Revolution in the nineteenth century, human civilization has entered what scientists now term the Anthropocene: the period of time when human activity is leaving indelible marks on the geological history of the earth. Global warming looms over our early twenty-first century civilization, with dire warnings of future catastrophe appearing on a weekly basis. But what is the average citizen supposed to do in the face of such impending doom? Recycle? Cycle? Buy a Tesla? Remember to turn your lights off when you go out? Vote Green? Take transit? Buy eco-soap? Shop local? Become vegetarian? So many small possibilities, but all seemingly insignificant in the face of the onrushing apocalyptic storm. Instead we are faced with the question of how we will experience dramatic climate change? How we will survive it? How we will witness it?

In the first section of this course we will examine how “nature writing” began in the nineteenth century, and encoded a romantic view of Nature that still impacts how western society views the environment today. We will then move on to examine how cli-fi (or climate fiction) writers of the late twentieth and early twenty-first centuries have addressed our fears of global climate change. Texts will include: Romantic and Victorian Poetry (online selections), Learning to Die in the Anthropocene (Roy Scranton), Cli-Fi: Canadian Tales of Climate Change (short fiction), The Parable of the Sower (Octavia Butler), The Water Knife (Paola Bacigalupi), and American War (Omar El Akkad).

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

INSTRUCTOR: ANGER, SUZY
3 credits
Term 2, MWF 2:00-3:00p

Strange Science, Ghosts, and Literary Theory

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, George Eliot’s “The Lifted Veil,” and Robert Louis Stevenson’s Strange Case of Doctor Jekyll and Mr. Hyde.

INSTRUCTOR: JACKSON, SARA-NELLE
3 credits
Term 2, TTh 0930 - 1100

 

INSTRUCTOR: GIFFEN, SHEILA
3 credits
Term 2, TTh 1100 - 1230

INSTRUCTOR: SHARPE, JAE
3 credits
Term 2, TTh 1400 - 1530

Experimental Representations of Consciousness in Literary Forms

How have authors grappled with the problem of representing consciousness and qualia in writing? In this course, we will consider how prose, poetry, and dramaturgy have endeavored to depict human thought, considering how particular forms of experimental or postmodern writing allow us to represent different kinds of thoughts, like memory and association. We will consider how these authors use form and content in tandem to comment on human subjectivity and the question of how faithfully thought can be conveyed through literature.

Texts are likely to include Samuel Beckett’s Endgame, Joan Didion’s Play It As It Lays, Kazuo Ishiguro’s Never Let Me Go, poems from William Blake, Wallace Stevens, Dionne Brand, Anne Sexton, and W.B. Yeats, and short stories from James Joyce, Edgar Allan Poe, and Franz Kafka.

 

INSTRUCTOR: MCNEILL, LAURIE
3 credits
Term 1, MWF 1400 - 1500

Writing Back: Life Writing and Speaking Truth to Power

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 refugee experiences or global conflicts – and offer personal perspectives on historical events that may challenge or disrupt official versions. We’ll examine the rhetorical and literary strategies authors use to bear witness, create family stories, and construct or reconstruct their own identities. We will three book-length memoirs -- Born a Crime, by Trevor Noah; Thi Bui’s The Best We Could Do: An Illustrated Memoir; and Something I’ve Been Meaning to Tell You: A Letter to My Daughter, by David Chariandy – and several essay-length texts (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. Classes will take place in person.

INSTRUCTOR: HILL, IAN
3 credits
Term 1, TTh 0930 - 1100

Rhetoric and Public Controversy

How does everyday language work to influence our thoughts and behaviors? This course provides some answers to this question by delving into the realm of rhetoric. Rhetoric, or the motivation of belief and action, encompasses not only overt techniques of persuasion, but also the quotidian aspects of language and symbol usage that facilitate (or hinder) our daily lives and organize society. This course introduces the principles of rhetorical theory and criticism, and students will apply them in writing and a speech/presentation to contemporary public controversies, such as the politics of climate change, the public function of science, and whatever current controversies fill the headlines each semester.

INSTRUCTOR: SHARPE, JAE
3 credits
Term 2, TTh 1230 - 1400

This course considers the nonfiction writing of U.S. women essayists from the 1960s to the 2010s. We will consider how these different authors take up the question of how the social roles of womanhood have changed over the late twentieth and early twenty-first century, and we will examine how nonfictional forms of writing become sites where authors can wrestle with the competing demands placed on them in domestic and public life.

Texts are likely to include selections from Joan Didion’s Slouching Towards Bethlehem, Susan Sontag’s Regarding the Pain of Others, Toni Morrison’s The Source of Self-Regard, Shirley Jackson’s Come Along With Me, and Cynthia Ozick’s Quarrel & Quandary.

 

INSTRUCTOR: EARLE, BO
3 credits
Term 2, MWF 1000 - 1100

Writing Adventures

This course explores literature of exploration both in the natural wilderness and in the wildernesses of culture and politics, considering topics including mountain climbing, surfing, manual labour and craftsmanship, environmentalism, psychology, sexism and racism. This class has a relatively large amount of reading. Coursework will be writing intensive and intended to encourage students to find and explore adventure in their own lives. Texts include: Wild, Cheryl Strayed; Between the World and Me, Ta-Nehisi Coates; Men Explain Things to Me, Rebecca Solnit; Barbarian Days, William Finnegan; The Gardener and the Carpenter, Alison Gopnik; Letter to my Nephew, James Baldwin; The Book of Eels, Patrik Svensson.

INSTRUCTOR: STICKLES, ELISE
3 credits
Term 2, TTh 1400 - 1530

What We Talk About When We Talk About Language

Good writers read, and good readers write. Or, as Stephen King puts it: "If you want to be a writer, you must do two things above all others: read a lot and write a lot”. Critical reading and writing are skills which can be developed through practice. In this course, we will demystify the process of critical, analytical reading by studying the rhetorical and stylistic principles used in a variety of non-fiction texts. You will then learn to apply these tools in your own writing. Given our goal of understanding the relationship between author and text, our course readings will focus on the relationship between language, identity, and authorship. We will consider what happens when we learn a new language, or lose one; how language background and identity are reflected in writing style and the choices authors make; and how authors take their audiences’ own identities into account. We will read reflections on the writing process itself, and in turn you will consider your own relationship with language in all its forms.

Readings include:

  • Alexie, Sherman. “She Had Some Horses: The Education of a Poet”. Teachers & Writers, vol. 26, no. 4, 1995, pp. 1-7.
  • Atwood, Margaret. “Approximate Homes”. Writing Home: A PEN Canada Anthology, edited by Constance Rooke, Toronto, ON, McClelland & Stewart, 1997, pp. 1-8.
  • Hoffman, Eva. “Lost in Translation.” Imagining Ourselves: Classics of Canadian Nonfiction, edited by Daniel Francis. Vancouver, BC, Arsenal Pulp Press, 1994, pp. 319-328.
  • Lesser, Wendy, editor. The Genius of Language: Fifteen Writers Reflect on Their Mother Tongue. United Kingdom, Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group, 2009.
  • Lahiri, Jhumpa. In Other Words. Bloomsbury Publishing, 2016.
  • Tan, Amy. “Mother Tongue.” The Threepenny Review, no. 43, 1990, pp. 7–8.
  • Taylor, Drew Hayden. “It Loses Something in the Translation.” Crisp Blue Edges: Indigenous Creative Non-fiction, edited by Rasunah Marsden, Penticton, BC, Theytus Books, 2000, pp. 38-40.

By the end of the course, students will be able to:

  • Identify rhetorical strategies and patterns
  • Analyze the effects of genre and audience on writing styles and structures
  • Analyze and compare non-fiction texts
  • Effectively critique their peers’ writing and evaluate their own writing processes
  • Understand critical reading and writing as ongoing, interacting practices

INSTRUCTOR: HANSON, GUNNAR / STRATTON, JAMES
3 credits
Term 2, MWF 1400 - 1500

Critical consideration of a broad range of commonly held beliefs about language and its relation to the brain and cognition, learning, society, change and evolution. Note: This is an elective course that does not fulfill writing requirements in any faculty or the literature requirement in the Faculty of Arts.


INSTRUCTOR: MCNEILL, LAURIE
3 credits
Term 1, MWF 1000 - 1100

Im/Migration

ENGL 200 is a collaboratively-taught exploration of key scholarly, theoretical, and critical approaches informing the study of literatures in English at UBC. Through a diverse set of readings that cross genre, historical periods, and social contexts, this course aims to develop skills in reading, analysis, and critical writing. Students in the course will work closely with one faculty instructor in a small-class setting. Four of these small classes will join together in a cluster for one lecture on each week’s designated texts and topic.

ENGL 200, sections 001, 002, 003, and 004, will be led by Laurie McNeill, Miranda Burgess, Dennis Britton, and Janice Chiew Ling Ho, with the topic “Im/Migration.” Together we will examine texts and narratives about travel, mobility, migrations, journeys, and arrivals of various kinds – voluntary, forced, opportunistic, and fantastic. Together, we will ask how literature can help us think about the following: What types of social and political factors lead/force people to leave their homeland? How are borders established and what do they do? How does dislocation create new forms of being and belonging?

INSTRUCTOR: BURGESS, MIRANDA
3 credits
Term 1, MWF 1000 - 1100

Im/Migration

ENGL 200 is a collaboratively-taught exploration of key scholarly, theoretical, and critical approaches informing the study of literatures in English at UBC. Through a diverse set of readings that cross genre, historical periods, and social contexts, this course aims to develop skills in reading, analysis, and critical writing. Students in the course will work closely with one faculty instructor in a small-class setting. Four of these small classes will join together in a cluster for one lecture on each week’s designated texts and topic.

ENGL 200, sections 001, 002, 003, and 004, will be led by Laurie McNeill, Miranda Burgess, Dennis Britton, and Janice Chiew Ling Ho, with the topic “Im/Migration.” Together we will examine texts and narratives about travel, mobility, migrations, journeys, and arrivals of various kinds – voluntary, forced, opportunistic, and fantastic. Together, we will ask how literature can help us think about the following: What types of social and political factors lead/force people to leave their homeland? How are borders established and what do they do? How does dislocation create new forms of being and belonging?

INSTRUCTOR: BRITTON, DENNIS
3 credits
Term 1, MWF 1000 - 1100

Im/Migration

ENGL 200 is a collaboratively-taught exploration of key scholarly, theoretical, and critical approaches informing the study of literatures in English at UBC. Through a diverse set of readings that cross genre, historical periods, and social contexts, this course aims to develop skills in reading, analysis, and critical writing. Students in the course will work closely with one faculty instructor in a small-class setting. Four of these small classes will join together in a cluster for one lecture on each week’s designated texts and topic.

ENGL 200, sections 001, 002, 003, and 004, will be led by Laurie McNeill, Miranda Burgess, Dennis Britton, and Janice Chiew Ling Ho, with the topic “Im/Migration.” Together we will examine texts and narratives about travel, mobility, migrations, journeys, and arrivals of various kinds – voluntary, forced, opportunistic, and fantastic. Together, we will ask how literature can help us think about the following: What types of social and political factors lead/force people to leave their homeland? How are borders established and what do they do? How does dislocation create new forms of being and belonging?

 

INSTRUCTOR: HO, JANICE
3 credits
Term 1, MWF 1000 - 1100

Im/Migration

ENGL 200 is a collaboratively-taught exploration of key scholarly, theoretical, and critical approaches informing the study of literatures in English at UBC. Through a diverse set of readings that cross genre, historical periods, and social contexts, this course aims to develop skills in reading, analysis, and critical writing. Students in the course will work closely with one faculty instructor in a small-class setting. Four of these small classes will join together in a cluster for one lecture on each week’s designated texts and topic.

ENGL 200, sections 001, 002, 003, and 004, will be led by Laurie McNeill, Miranda Burgess, Dennis Britton, and Janice Chiew Ling Ho, with the topic “Im/Migration.” Together we will examine texts and narratives about travel, mobility, migrations, journeys, and arrivals of various kinds – voluntary, forced, opportunistic, and fantastic. Together, we will ask how literature can help us think about the following: What types of social and political factors lead/force people to leave their homeland? How are borders established and what do they do? How does dislocation create new forms of being and belonging?

INSTRUCTOR: LEE, TARA
3 credits
Term 1, MWF 1300 - 1400

Hauntings and Spectral Possibilities in English Literary Studies

“It seemed, sir, a woman, tall and large, with thick and dark hair hanging long down her back. I know not what dress she had on: it was white and straight; but whether gown, sheet, or shroud, I cannot tell” (Charlotte Brontë, Jane Eyre). These sections of the collaboratively taught

ENGL 200 (005, 006, 007, and 008) will focus on haunting: the in/visible elements that bump, rattle, and wail in the night. We will examine a variety of literary texts, probing how ghosts and things that haunt productively unsettle the supposed status quo. Our conversations will include hauntings that challenge sanitized colonial narratives, the liminality of ghostly presences/absences, and the material repercussions of social and familial hauntings.

Storytelling will also figure strongly in the course as we invite students to consider how they can leverage haunting as a critical framework for reconsidering the social, cultural, and national spaces they inhabit.

INSTRUCTOR: BOSE, SARIKA
3 credits
Term 1, MWF 1300 - 1400

Hauntings and Spectral Possibilities in English Literary Studies

“It seemed, sir, a woman, tall and large, with thick and dark hair hanging long down her back. I know not what dress she had on: it was white and straight; but whether gown, sheet, or shroud, I cannot tell” (Charlotte Brontë, Jane Eyre). These sections of the collaboratively taught

ENGL 200 (005, 006, 007, and 008) will focus on haunting: the in/visible elements that bump, rattle, and wail in the night. We will examine a variety of literary texts, probing how ghosts and things that haunt productively unsettle the supposed status quo. Our conversations will include hauntings that challenge sanitized colonial narratives, the liminality of ghostly presences/absences, and the material repercussions of social and familial hauntings.

Storytelling will also figure strongly in the course as we invite students to consider how they can leverage haunting as a critical framework for reconsidering the social, cultural, and national spaces they inhabit.

INSTRUCTOR: BAIN, KIMBERLY
3 credits
Term 1, MWF 1300 - 1400

Hauntings and Spectral Possibilities in English Literary Studies

“It seemed, sir, a woman, tall and large, with thick and dark hair hanging long down her back. I know not what dress she had on: it was white and straight; but whether gown, sheet, or shroud, I cannot tell” (Charlotte Brontë, Jane Eyre). These sections of the collaboratively taught

ENGL 200 (005, 006, 007, and 008) will focus on haunting: the in/visible elements that bump, rattle, and wail in the night. We will examine a variety of literary texts, probing how ghosts and things that haunt productively unsettle the supposed status quo. Our conversations will include hauntings that challenge sanitized colonial narratives, the liminality of ghostly presences/absences, and the material repercussions of social and familial hauntings.

Storytelling will also figure strongly in the course as we invite students to consider how they can leverage haunting as a critical framework for reconsidering the social, cultural, and national spaces they inhabit.

INSTRUCTOR: HUNT, DALLAS
3 credits
Term 1, MWF 1300 - 1400

Hauntings and Spectral Possibilities in English Literary Studies

“It seemed, sir, a woman, tall and large, with thick and dark hair hanging long down her back. I know not what dress she had on: it was white and straight; but whether gown, sheet, or shroud, I cannot tell” (Charlotte Brontë, Jane Eyre). These sections of the collaboratively taught

ENGL 200 (005, 006, 007, and 008) will focus on haunting: the in/visible elements that bump, rattle, and wail in the night. We will examine a variety of literary texts, probing how ghosts and things that haunt productively unsettle the supposed status quo. Our conversations will include hauntings that challenge sanitized colonial narratives, the liminality of ghostly presences/absences, and the material repercussions of social and familial hauntings.

Storytelling will also figure strongly in the course as we invite students to consider how they can leverage haunting as a critical framework for reconsidering the social, cultural, and national spaces they inhabit.

INSTRUCTOR: JAMES, SUZANNE
3 credits
Term 2, MWF 1100 - 1200

ENGL 200 is a collaboratively-taught exploration of key scholarly, theoretical, and critical approaches informing the study of literatures in English at UBC. Through a diverse set of readings that cross genre, historical periods, and social contexts, this course aims to develop skills in reading, analysis, and critical writing. Students will work closely with one faculty instructor in a small-class setting. Four of these small classes will join together in a cluster for one lecture on each week’s designated texts and topic, with instructors rotating through these classes so that students will get a sense of the interests of four different English faculty members.

INSTRUCTOR: ZEITLIN, MICHAEL
3 credits
Term 2, MWF 1100 - 1200

ENGL 200 is a collaboratively-taught exploration of key scholarly, theoretical, and critical approaches informing the study of literatures in English at UBC. Through a diverse set of readings that cross genre, historical periods, and social contexts, this course aims to develop skills in reading, analysis, and critical writing. Students will work closely with one faculty instructor in a small-class setting. Four of these small classes will join together in a cluster for one lecture on each week’s designated texts and topic, with instructors rotating through these classes so that students will get a sense of the interests of four different English faculty members.

INSTRUCTOR: MALLIPEDDI, RAMESH
3 credits
Term 2, MWF 1100 - 1200

ENGL 200 is a collaboratively-taught exploration of key scholarly, theoretical, and critical approaches informing the study of literatures in English at UBC. Through a diverse set of readings that cross genre, historical periods, and social contexts, this course aims to develop skills in reading, analysis, and critical writing. Students will work closely with one faculty instructor in a small-class setting. Four of these small classes will join together in a cluster for one lecture on each week’s designated texts and topic, with instructors rotating through these classes so that students will get a sense of the interests of four different English faculty members.

INSTRUCTOR: ECHARD, SIAN
3 credits
Term 2, MWF 1100 - 1200

ENGL 200 is a collaboratively-taught exploration of key scholarly, theoretical, and critical approaches informing the study of literatures in English at UBC. Through a diverse set of readings that cross genre, historical periods, and social contexts, this course aims to develop skills in reading, analysis, and critical writing. Students will work closely with one faculty instructor in a small-class setting. Four of these small classes will join together in a cluster for one lecture on each week’s designated texts and topic, with instructors rotating through these classes so that students will get a sense of the interests of four different English faculty members.

INSTUCTOR: MACKIE, GREGORY
6 credits
Terms 1-2, MWF 1500 - 1600

The Literary Imagination: Traditions and Counter-Traditions

A year-long (6 credit) course, English 210 is designed to provide Honours students with a firm grounding in English-language literary studies. Its organization is largely chronological, beginning in the medieval period and continuing to the present day. It aims to introduce students to a wide sampling of literary works of poetry, fiction, and drama across the centuries, and to equip them with the analytical tools employed in the scholarly study of these genres.

Although these texts – and their authors – engage a diverse variety of topics, in reading and writing about them we will also want to keep in mind such themes as art and imagination, memory and history, the individual in society and freedom and repression. While taking care to situate our readings in their historical and cultural contexts, we should also, where appropriate, allow ourselves to approach them with a sense of openness and humour.

INSTRUCTOR: HUDSON, NICHOLAS
3 credits
Term 1, TTh 1400 - 1530

Representing Race, Gender and Social Class, 1550-1800

The period from the sixteenth century to the late eighteenth century witnessed the creation of categories of race, social class and gender that were taken as “natural” until very recently.

During this period, the human species was increasingly subdivided into “racial” groups with white Europeans situated on top of a hierarchy of peoples. The difference between “man” and “woman” was deepened in a way that made males the “naturally” superior sex in charge of all public affairs. Politically, an older social hierarchy governed absolutely by a hereditary monarchy and aristocracy gave way to a system dominated by instead by the power of wealth and capitalist accumulation. In this section of English 220 will be examine how these fundamental changes were represented in literary works that also helped to create and to reinforce a modern hegemonic order that lasted until at least the late twentieth century.

Texts:

  • Shakespeare, Othello; Aphra Behn, Oroonoko; Olauda Equiano, The Interesting Narrative of Gustavus Vasa; John Donne, selected love poems; Eliza Haywood, Fantomina; Mary
  • Wollstonecraft, Maria, or the Wrongs of Woman; Suzanne Centlivre, Bold Stroke for a Wife; George Coleman the Younger, Inkle and Yarico; a selection of working class poetry

Assessment: two short essays, a final paper and a take-home exam, plus attendance and participation

INSTRUCTOR: PARELES, MO
3 credits
Term 2, MWF 1100 - 1200

A survey of prose, poetry and drama to the 18th Century.

INSTRUCTOR: PARTRIDGE, STEPHEN
3 credits
Term 2, MWF 1400 - 1500

A survey of prose, poetry and drama to the 18th Century.

INSTRUCTOR: FOX, LORCAN
3 credits
Term 2,
wmf 1400 - 1500

This course focuses on selected writers of British poetry, drama, and prose from the late eighteenth century to the present. It covers four periods of British literary history: “romantic,” Victorian, modern, and post-modern. We will study each work with a view to identifying and exploring social, political, and economic issues of each period: for instance, slavery, the Woman Question, the Condition-of-England Question, colonialism, and post-colonialism. We will also study works by writers from former British colonies. A provisional reading list includes poems by Blake, Wordsworth, Hemans, Tennyson, Kipling, Eliot, and Larkin; Christina Rossetti’s “Goblin Market”; short fiction by Conrad and Mansfield; prose nonfiction by Orwell; and a play by Shaw or Beckett. All readings are included in the course text: The Broadview Anthology of British Literature, Concise Edition, Volume B, 3rd ed. (The Age of Romanticism, The Victorian Era, The Twentieth Century and Beyond).

Course requirements: two in-class essays, each worth 20%; research essay (1500 words), 30%; final exam, 30%

INSTRUCTOR: DIABO, GAGE
3 credits
Term 1, TTh 930 - 1100

ONLINE | SYNCHRONOUS

INSTRUCTOR: DIABO, GAGE
3 credits

ONLINE | SYNCHRONOUS

As Cherokee scholar Daniel Heath Justice puts it in response to the titular question of his book Why Indigenous Literatures Matter, “Indigenous literatures matter because Indigenous peoples matter. And that, to me, is mighty good cause for celebration” (221). More than just to interrogate and develop competencies in relation to Indigenous literatures, this course asks students to celebrate the literary work of Indigenous peoples in their appropriate contexts.

This course will guide students through the history of First Peoples’ literary productions in Canada from the oral traditions of time immemorial to the prose, poetry, and drama of the present day. The course begins with a look to the east, to the unceded ancestral territory of the Haudenosaunee Confederacy, with Mohawk writers E. Pauline Johnson and Kahente Horn-Miller as well as Tuscarora essayist Alicia Elliott. Moving from east to west, the course continues with literary approaches to Anishinaabe resurgence in the writings of Leanne Betasamosake Simpson, Basil H. Johnston, Grace Dillon, and Waubgeshig Rice. The course approaches political and cultural issues pertaining to the Indian Act, the Indian Residential School System, and the Red Power era by way of reference to Nehiyaw novelist Michelle Good. Fiction and poetry by Chrystos, Annharte, Joshua Whitehead, Billy-Ray Belcourt, and Arielle Twist are woven throughout the reading schedule in order to explore the range of experiences and formal accomplishments of Indigenous women and queer folk. Lastly, the course addresses the need for decolonial solidarity with reference to the Asian-Indigenous intersections in Stó:lō author Lee Maracle’s “Yin Chin” and Métis playwright Marie Clements’ Burning Vision.

INSTRUCTOR: MCCORMACK, BRENDAN
3 credits
TERM 2, MWF 1000 - 1100

What if… ? Speculative Literatures in Canada (or, Eh is for Apocalypse)

“We can’t possibly live otherwise until we first imagine otherwise” --Daniel Heath Justice (Cherokee Nation), Why Indigenous Literatures Matter

What if global warming causes a pandemic of dreamlessness and a future where Indigenous peoples are hunted for the reported cure found in their bone marrow? What if a new volcanic island were to unexpectedly arise in Burrard Inlet at the outer harbour of Vancouver? What if geronticide emerged as a popular solution to intergenerational social and economic challenges? Speculative literature—an umbrella category usually associated with the science fiction, fantasy, and horror genres, but which we will approach more expansively—is literature of the what if. By expanding, often into disturbing and uncomfortable places, the conditions of the world as we know it in order to consider what might be, it invariably returns us to what is, and to the historical and contemporary challenges that prompt creative acts of speculation. In this course we will take up a range of fantastic novels, short stories, and film in a number of increasingly popular and sometimes overlapping speculative genres—like science fiction, climate fiction (“cli-fi”), dystopia/utopia, (post-)apocalyptic, Afro- and Indigenous futurism, alternate history, horror, fantasy, thriller—to examine the “what ifs” posed by Canadian and Indigenous writers; the power, possibilities, and limits of genre; and the hopes, fears, and political imaginaries of the worlds speculative literature brings into being.

The readings (to be finalized later in the summer) will likely be selected from works by Margaret Atwood, Jeff Barnaby, Wayde Compton, Cherie Dimaline, Lawrence Hill, Larissa Lai, Eden Robinson, and Saleema Nawaz.

INSTRUCTOR: TOMC, SANDRA
3 credits
Term 1, TTh 1100 - 1230

American Reckonings

This course will be a loose survey of United States literature from 1820 to 1900. Our focus will be social justice themes and literary movements. The course will begin with the major figures in early nineteenth-century U.S. literary nationalism, figures who celebrated and mythologized the founding of the United States, including Washington Irving, Ralph Waldo Emerson, and Walt Whitman. After looking at these central champions of American nationalism, we will move on to study a skeptical tradition in U.S. literature. This skeptical literature takes into account the problematic political history of the United States, its reliance on an often-brutal capitalist economic order, its dependence on race-based enslavement, and its violent settler colonization of Indigenous territories. In this section we will first study romantic and poetic attacks on the mythology of the U.S. by such writers as Nathaniel Hawthorne, Edgar Allan Poe, Herman Melville, and Rebecca Harding Davis. We will then look at how a powerful gender ideology in the United States worked in tandem with its larger political and economic ideologies; in this section we will study Emily Dickinson, Charlotte Perkins Gilman, and Henry James. Finally, the course will look at Black and Indigenous accounts of life under U.S. slavery and colonization. In this section we will read William Apess, Frederick Douglass, and Harriet Jacobs.

INSTRUCTOR: SEVERS, JEFFREY
3 credits
Term 1, TTh 1400 - 1530

U.S. Novel Since 1960

This course surveys some of the great innovators in the U.S. novel over the past 50 to 60 years, ranging across the stalwarts of realism, postmodernism, and the proliferation of important multicultural voices in the American canon. Questions we will address include: What have been the major innovations in fictional form in the U.S. in the past sixty years, and what forces seem to have driven them? What structures have writers developed in this era to demonstrate new layers of guilt, innocence, and moral complexity? Does the novel, as informational and imaginative medium, have authority in this era? If so, what sort of authority is it? What difference has the explosion in prominent ethnic writers within U.S. literature made for definitions of “American culture”? Students will write two essays (1500 and 2000 words), as well as a final exam. Texts are likely to include Thomas Pynchon’s The Crying of Lot 49, Joan Didion’s Play It As It Lays, Toni Morrison’s “Recitatif” (story) and Jazz, John Cheever’s “The Swimmer” (story), Chang-rae Lee’s A Gesture Life, and Jennifer Egan’s A Visit From the Goon Squad.

 

INSTRUCTOR: FOX, LORCAN
3 credits
Term 1, TTh 1400 - 1530

In this section of English 224 we will study a wide range of literature by authors who write in English and are from former British colonies (excluding North America). Such literature has been labelled “post-colonial,” a term we will define and interrogate early in the course. A provisional reading list includes poetry by Derek Walcott (St. Lucia), Lorna Goodison (Jamaica), and Jean Arasanayagam (Sri Lanka); short stories by Nadine Gordimer (South Africa), Chinua Achebe (Nigeria), and Anita Desai (India); essays by Salman Rushdie (India-UK), Jamaica Kincaid (Antigua-USA), and Timothy Mo (Hong Kong-UK).

All assigned readings are included in the course text: Concert of Voices: An Anthology of World Writing in English, 2nd ed. (Broadview).

Course requirements: two in-class essays, each worth 20%; research essay (1500 words), 30%; final exam, 30%

INSTRUCTOR: FOX, LORCAN
3 credits
Term 2, MWF 1100 - 1200

In this section of English 225 our goal is to study a broad range of poetry by writers of various nationalities; a few poems will be read in English translation. Proceeding chronologically, we will begin with one or two poems of the Renaissance and then move on to the Romantic, Victorian, and Modern periods. The course will end with some consideration of poetry written in the late twentieth and early twenty-first centuries. Always we will attend to a poem’s literary elements (form, figurative language, and so on), but sometimes we may also turn briefly to its historical context. “I, too, dislike it,” writes Marianne Moore of poetry in a famous poem entitled “Poetry.” If you don’t already like “it,” I hope you will by the end of the course.

Text: The Broadview Introduction to Literature: Poetry, 2nd edition (Broadview)

Course requirements: two in-class essays (each worth 20%), research essay (30%), final exam (30%)

INSTRUCTOR: FOX, LORCAN
3 credits
Term 1, TTh 1100 - 1230

In this section of English 227 we will study an assortment of short stories by authors of various nationalities and historical eras. After briefly exploring reasons for the emergence of the modern short story we will proceed chronologically by examining short fiction written over the span of roughly a century, from the late nineteenth to the early twenty-first centuries. Apart from identifying each story’s literary elements, we will note how it may reflect one or more literary movements: for instance, realism. How to define the term “short story” is a question that will almost certainly arise from our close study of so broad a range of short fiction.

The short stories we study in the course will be selected from the following list:

Kate Chopin, “The Story of an Hour”; Guy de Maupassant, “The False Gems”; Charlotte Perkins Gilman, “The Yellow Wallpaper”; James Joyce, “The Dead”; Franz Kafka, “Metamorphosis”; Katherine Mansfield, “The Garden Party”; Ernest Hemingway, “A Clean, Well-Lighted Place”; Chinua Achebe, “Dead Men’s Path”; Alice Munro, “Friend of My Youth”; Alistair MacLeod, “As Birds Bring Forth the Sun”; Raymond Carver, “Cathedral”; Margaret Atwood, “Happy Endings”; Thomas King, “A Short History of Indians in Canada”; Kazuo Ishiguro, “A Family Supper”; Jhumpa Lahiri, “Interpreter of Maladies”; Hassan Blasim, “The Nightmare of Carlos Fuentes”; Madeleine Thien, “Simple Recipes”

Text: The Broadview Introduction to Literature: Short Fiction, 2nd ed. (Broadview)

Course requirements: two quizzes, each worth 20%; research essay (1500 words), 30%; final exam, 30%

 

INSTRUCTOR: CULBERT, JOHN
3 credits
Term 2, MWF1400 - 1500

Principles, methods and resources for reading the novel and the short story.

 

INSTRUCTOR: VESSEY, MARK
3 credits
Term 2, TTh 930 - 1100

From Literary Criticism to World Literatures: A Story of English Literary Studies between the Early Twentieth and Early Twenty-First Century

This course will provide an introduction, based on a customized anthology of exemplary texts, to the historical evolution of approaches to the study of English literature(s) over the past century.

 

INSTRUCTOR: DANCYGIER, BARBARA
3 credits
Term 2, TTh 1230 - 1400

How Language Creates Meaning

Expressing meaning is why we use language in the first place, but understanding how we choose the form of expression is not straightforward. In the course, we will learn how linguistic meaning emerges at the intersection of our embodied experience, our conceptual abilities, and our social and cultural context. To flesh out the meaning emergence mechanisms we will consider examples from grammar, structure of words, and multiple word meanings, but also visual communication and multimodal (text and image) artifacts. Through reading and analysis of examples, we will learn what it means to view language as a tool supporting conceptualization, in various communicative situations (advertising, internet discourse, commercial contexts, cityscape, and many more).

 

INSTRUCTOR: STICKLES, ELISE
3 credits
Term 1, TTh 1530 - 1700

Introduction to Cognitive Linguistics

Is a taco a sandwich? What about a hot dog? These questions may lead to a fun debate over dinner, but they also reveal the remarkable nature of the structure of mental categories (such as “sandwich”) and how we decide what does – or doesn’t – belong. In this course, we won’t be able to answer these questions, but we will be able to learn why they are so tricky to answer. To do so, we will explore the field of cognitive linguistics, which is the study of how language and cognition work together to create meaning. Fundamentally, our language is a reflection of how we understand the world around us, as humans living in physical bodies, experiencing the properties of our environment, and engaging in constant social interaction. Therefore, to understand how language works, we must also understand how other cognitive processes work, such as categorization, perception, and mental representations of concepts.

We will begin with learning about how we categorize, organize, reason about, and ultimately linguistically label concepts. This structure provides the basis of understanding how figurative language works, with a focus on metaphor and metonymy. We will then see how these same cognitive tools allow words to acquire multiple meanings (polysemy), and how concepts, words, and grammar all work together to create meaning. Finally, we will consider how our newly acquired understanding of language can be applied to other areas of life, such as politics, advertising, and healthcare. Throughout we will study language in all its forms, including written, spoken, and signed language; gesture; and image.

By the end of the course, students will be able to:

  • Identify and understand basic concepts in cognitive linguistics
  • Understand the roles of physical, psychological, and sociocultural context in linguistic meaning
  • Analyze the linguistic and conceptual structure of a variety of texts
  • Apply concepts from cognitive linguistics to other topics and disciplines

The main texts are Cognitive Linguistics: An Introduction (2006), by Vyvyan Evans and Melanie Green and An Introduction to Cognitive Linguistics (2006), by Friedrich Ungerer and Hans-Jorg Schmid.

There is no need to purchase anything; all assigned readings will be available online via the UBC Library website.

 

INSTRUCTOR: DE VILLIERS, JESSICA
3 credits
Term 1, MWF 1400 - 1500

Working with Spoken Discourse

This course introduces techniques and approaches for the analysis of spoken discourse in English. The focus will be on analyzing language events involving interaction between two or more speakers, with an emphasis on considering language in context.

The course begins with a general overview of the subject including practices and considerations for the collection and transcription of spoken discourse. We will then consider a number of approaches to discourse analysis; ethnography, speech functions, conversation analysis, sociolinguistics and critical discourse analysis. Students will learn how to design and conduct their own research projects. The main textbook, Analysing Casual Conversation, will be supplemented with lecture materials and some additional reading. Throughout the term we will work toward learning and applying a “toolkit” to collected texts.

Examples of both spoken and written discourse may be examined but the emphasis will be on spoken discourse. Students will be encouraged to collect and analyze their own data.

In general, the goals of the course will be:

  • Developing skills in the analysis of naturally occurring spoken texts
  • Developing skills in seeing pattern frequency and functional variety in spoken texts
  • Designing and producing a research project involving the collection and analysis of spoken data.

There will be a number of short activities and assignments, a group presentation, a final paper representing 40% of the course grade and two short tests. Students will also present their proposed work for the final paper to the class.

The textbook for the course will be Analysing Casual Conversation, S. Eggins and D. Slade. Equinox Publishing, 2005.

Classes will be held in person on Mondays and Wednesdays, and online via Zoom on Fridays.

 

INSTRUCTOR: HUNT, DALLAS
3 credits
Term 2, TTh 930 - 1100

A study of cultural expression in contemporary indigenous contexts.

 

INSTRUCTOR: CAVELL, RICHARD
3 credits
Term 1, MWF 1100 - 1200

Approaches to the study of media: philosophical; technological; cultural; theoretical.

 

INSTRUCTOR: BRITTON, DENNIS
3 credits
Term 2, TTh 1400 - 1530

Introductory topics in Shakespeare studies that seek to identify relationships between Shakespeare's work and present-day issues and concerns.

 

INSTRUCTOR: GOODING, RICHARD
3 credits
Term 1, MF 1100 - 1200

Wisdom, Nonsense, and True Lies: An Introduction to Children’s and Young Adult Literature

”I imagine everyone will judge it reasonable, that... children, when little, should look upon their parents as their lords, their absolute governors, and as such stand in awe of them; and that when they come to riper years, they should look on them as their best, as their only sure friends, and as such love and reverence them ” --John Locke, Some Thoughts Concerning Education, 1693

In an enormously popular and influential work that became something of a handbook for parents and educators, the philosopher John Locke presents an idealized view of the path from childhood to maturity. Some Thoughts Concerning Education was published just as a distinct body of writing for the young was beginning to emerge in England, and Locke argued that the books children read play an important role in their development. But Locke was also a bachelor who had little first-hand experience of children, and he didn’t anticipate the many ways that writing for the young would reflect the complicated and often fraught relations between children and their elders. This course offers an introduction to writing for younger readers from the 17th to the early 21st century. In readings, discussions, and lectures on children’s literature published in English, we will examine how changing understandings of childhood are reflected in the literary genres that adults developed to socialize and regulate the behaviour of the young.

Our texts will include a selection of fairy tales, C.S. Lewis’ The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, Roald Dahl’s The BFG, Neil Gaiman’s The Graveyard Book, and Vera Brosgol’s Anya’s Ghost.

 

INSTRUCTOR: BAXTER, GISELE
3 credits
Term 2, TTh 1230 - 1400

Speculative Fiction: Synthetic Humans; Posthuman Dystopias

“We make Angels. In the service of Civilization. There were bad angels once … I make good angels now.” - Niander Wallace, Blade Runner 2049

“Whole generations of disposable people.” – Guinan, “The Measure of a Man”, Star Trek: The Next Generation (season 2)

The near-future and alternate-reality landscapes of science fiction are often terrifying places and have been since Gothic and dystopian impulses intersected in Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein. Shelley’s landmark tale evokes dread in the implications of Victor’s generation of a humanoid Creature; this dread echoes in more recent products or accidents of science: clones, robots and replicants, artificial intelligences, cyborgs. Such texts raise issues of gendered exploitation, consciousness and rights, research ethics, and fear, in the realization that these creatures are, ultimately, not human but posthuman, yet often more sympathetic than their makers.

However, despite their apparent superiority, such humanoids tend to be defined as commodities. In this course, we will consider the posthuman element of dystopian speculations reflecting on the present and recent past, especially concerning threats of mass surveillance, profit-motivated technology, environmental crisis, and redefinitions of human identity. Core texts tentatively include William Gibson, Neuromancer; Lana Wachowski and Lilly Wachowski, The Matrix: Shooting Script; Kazuo Ishiguro, Never Let Me Go; Blade Runner 2049 (dir. Denis Villeneuve) plus one other film (or screenplay) and/or one other novel. Evaluation will be based on a midterm essay, a term paper requiring secondary academic research, a final exam, and participation in discussion.

Keep checking my blog (https://blogs.ubc.ca/drgmbaxter/) for updates concerning texts and requirements.

 

INSTRUCTOR: TE BOKKEL, NATHAN
3 credits
Term 1, MWF 0900 - 1000

ONLINE

Ends of Nature

Glaciers melting, forests burning, grasslands eroding, climate changing—today, we witness the end of nature. Nature has been clear-cut, strip-mined, and polluted, rearranged by engineering, transformed by biotechnology, and replaced by simulation and outer space. But what exactly is nature? And what do we mean by its end?

The stories we tell about ends of nature, and how we tell those stories, are essential to answering these questions. There are many such stories, and they vary over time and around the world. We’ll start exploring them with biblical seas of blood and days of darkness, then we’ll read poems of plagues and wars, stories of machines, nuclear fallout, and virtual reality, and novels about genetic engineering and climate change. We’ll read foundational ecocritical essays about ends of nature, as well as a few popular essays. There will be two quizzes and two papers.

INSTRUCTOR: MCNEILLY, KEVIN
3 credits
Term 2, TTh 930-1100

Comics and Graphic Media: Reading Surfaces

In this course, we will survey key texts in emerging canons of graphic media—hybrids and mixtures of comics, illustrated texts, cartoons, graphic novels, graffiti, visual media and other genres—with an eye to establishing our own workable critical reading practices. What do graphic texts tell us about the limits of literature, and about the relationships between art and popular culture? How has the emergence of mass-produced graphic forms and genres impacted on the ways in which we read, and on how we value and evaluate writing? What has become of our sense of what constitutes a book or even a page? How do graphic media encourage us to reflect on the visual, spatial and material forms of representation, in language and in other sign systems and mediums? How is graphic media's increasing popularity, its burgeoning readership, tied to certain conceptions of identity, subjectivity, sociality and literacy? The texts for this course are likely to include Black Panther: A Nation Under Our Feet by Ta-Nehisi Coates and Brian Stelfreeze, Making Comics by Lynda Barry, Watchmen by Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons, A Girl Called Echo: Pemmican Wars by Katherena Vermette and Scott B. Henderson, Fun Home by Alison Bechdel, and Sweet Tooth by Jeff Lemire. Students will also have an opportunity to write about and discuss their own favourite comics.

 

INSTRUCTOR: SAUNDERS, MARY ANN
3 credits
Term 1, MWF 1400 - 1500

Approaches to the study of the relationships between literature and film.


INSTRUCTOR: PALTIN, JUDITH
3 credits
Term 2, MWF 1400 - 1500

Analysis of theoretical methods and critical approaches practiced in the discipline of English studies. Required of all students in the English Honours Literature and Language and Literature programs.

This problem- and play-based approach to general literary and critical theory studies what counts as knowledge, how we find meaning and where, how humans adapt, respond, and resist in the face of changing conditions in the world, the status of art as expression, and how we determine communication and interpretation. You might think of critical theory as consisting in the arguments which justify the work of the arts and humanities and expose the measure of their worth. It asks what functions critics and creatively-thinking theorists play in the processes by which societies and cultures reproduce themselves, and it thinks about how to advocate most effectively for those in the world who face social, economic, environmental, and political barriers to thriving and flourishing. We will read and discuss a rich selection of short fiction and poems in juxtaposition with narrative theory, ecocriticism, theories in media and communication, critical race theory, feminist theory and literary criticism, gender studies, queer theory, old and new materialisms, studies in the workings of the mind and psychoanalysis, decoloniality, post/structuralism, and cultural theory.

INSTRUCTOR: BAXTER, GISELE
3 credits
Term 2, TTh 0930 - 1100

Study of the principles of written communication in general business and professional activities, and practice in the preparation of abstracts, proposals, reports, and correspondence. Not for credit towards the English Major or Minor.

Now with added grammar! While 301 is not a course in remedial grammar, this section will provide online Canvas-based writing resources and a series of workshops, designed to help identify writing and proofreading problems, and to provide strategies to address them.

English 301: Technical Writing examines the rhetorical genre of professional and technical communication, especially online, through analysis and application of its principles and practices. You will produce a formal report, investigating resources and/or concerns in a real- life community, as a major project involving a series of linked assignments. This project will involve the study (and possibly practical application) of research ethics where human subjects are involved (e.g. in conducting surveys or interviews).

Think of this course as an extended report-writing Boot Camp: intensive, useful preparation for the last phase of your undergraduate degree, as you start applying to professional and graduate programs, and for the years beyond of work and community involvement. Technical Writing is closed to first- and second-year students in Arts, and cannot be used for credit towards the English Major or Minor.

The course text will be Lannon et al, Technical Communications, 8th Canadian Edition, Pearson, 2020.

Please note that this is a blended course, and will require both participation in synchronous lectures and workshops as well as asynchronous independent work of the sort done in a conventional online course (e.g. Canvas-based textbook exercises and peer feedback on drafts).

Keep checking my blog (https://blogs.ubc.ca/drgmbaxter/) for updates concerning texts and requirements.

 

INSTRUCTOR: PATERSON, ERIKA
3 credits
Term 1

ONLINE

See English 301 Syllabus, 2022

English 301 involves the study of principles of written and online communications in business and professional contexts; it includes discussion of and practice in the preparation of abstracts, proposals, applications, reports, correspondence, and online communications: emails, texts, Web Folio, and networking.

Note: Credits in this course cannot be used toward a major or a minor in English.

Prerequisite: six credits of First Year English or Arts One or Foundations English 301 is offered as a fully online course.

The use of a computer and ready access to an Internet connection are required. Intended Audience This course should be of interest to students in a variety of disciplines such as commerce, science, education, and the health sciences. It may also be of interest to students in Arts Co-Op and other Co-Op programs.

Course author: Dr. Erika Paterson is an instructor in the Department of English Language and Literatures.

 

INSTRUCTOR: PATERSON, ERIKA
3 credits
Term 2

ONLINE

See English 301 Syllabus, 2022

English 301 involves the study of principles of written and online communications in business and professional contexts; it includes discussion of and practice in the preparation of abstracts, proposals, applications, reports, correspondence, and online communications: emails, texts, Web Folio, and networking.

Note: Credits in this course cannot be used toward a major or a minor in English.

Prerequisite: six credits of First Year English or Arts One or Foundations English 301 is offered as a fully online course.

The use of a computer and ready access to an Internet connection are required. Intended Audience This course should be of interest to students in a variety of disciplines such as commerce, science, education, and the health sciences. It may also be of interest to students in Arts Co-Op and other Co-Op programs.

Course author: Dr. Erika Paterson is an instructor in the Department of English Language and Literatures.

 

INSTRUCTOR: SMILGES, LOGAN
3 credits
Term 2, MWF 1100 - 1200

Exploration of the persuasive dimension of discourse practices in science, technology, and medicine.

 

INSTRUCTOR: HILL, IAN
3 credits
Term 1, TTh 1230 - 1400

What is rhetoric, and how do persuasion and influence work? How you can persuade your friends, family, colleagues, and strangers? Some of the most infamous historical intellectuals vehemently disagree about the answers to these questions, but taken together, their answers provide a blueprint for rhetorical theory. By reading and applying rhetorical theories advanced by important thinkers in major epochs of world history, students will learn about how rhetoric was supposed to function in ancient Egyptian wisdom literature, ancient Greece (Gorgias, Philostratus, & Aristotle), ancient Rome (Cicero), medieval Arabia (al-Jurjānī & al-Rāzī), and elsewhere, as well as how these theories still function (or not) today.

 

INSTRUCTOR: STRATTON, JAMES
3 credits
Term 1, MWF 1100 - 1200

Principles of language change and language typology. The development of the English language from its Indo-European origins to the end of the Anglo-Saxon period.

INSTRUCTOR: STRATTON, JAMES
3 credits
Term 2, MWF 1100 - 1200

Principles of language change. The development and spread of the English language from the Norman Conquest to the Modern English period.

INSTRUCTOR: BIERMANN, INA
3 credits
Term 1

ONLINE | ASYNCHRONOUS

The English 321 course provides an introduction to English grammar and its use in everyday communication. We take a descriptive stance when considering the rules of grammar and language variation, starting with the study of words and their parts, proceeding to word classes, phrases and clauses, and concluding with the different communicative functions that grammatical structures can perform when we package information in particular ways. This course equips students with skills to identify and describe the effects of derived structures in various communicative situations and provides a strong basis for further study of the English language, language variation, literary and non-literary stylistics and for teaching English. The course includes numerous exercises analyzing sentences and chunks of discourse. There are four short collaborative assignments, two monthly tests, and a final exam counting 30% of the final grade.

The prescribed books are:

  • Börjars & Burridge (2010)
  • Leech, Deuchar and Hoogenraad (2006)

More details are available on the course website on https://canvas.ubc.ca/.

 

INSTRUCTOR: BIERMANN, INA
3 credits
TERM 2

ONLINE

This course is an introduction to the study of stylistics, focusing on literary stylistics, i.e., the linguistic analysis of poems, prose and plays with a view to arriving at verifiable interpretations. During the term, we make a close study of selected examples from each of the three main genres and apply our knowledge of language and linguistics in order to interpret the literary message. As students work through the course modules, they submit exercises to apply the techniques of stylistic analysis to specific examples. Students also participate in two collaborative workshops. In the first workshop, you replicate a published stylistic analysis of a poem to determine how your reading as a group differs or corresponds to the published reading. You then evaluate what you have learnt in the process of replicating the analysis. The second workshop involves stylistically analyzing conversational strategies in a dramatic text.

This includes examining extracts from the text, describing the strategies used and articulating your findings about the ways in which humour is communicated. In the term paper, students offer a stylistic analysis of a short story.

Distribution of grades:

  • Exercises 30%
  • Workshops (20% each) 40%
  • Term paper 30%

Prescribed reading:

Simpson, Paul. Stylistics: A Resource Book for Students, 2nd ed. Routledge, 2014. More details are available on the course website on https://canvas.ubc.ca/.

 

INSTRUCTOR: DOLLINGER, STEFAN
3 credits
Term 1, TTH 1400 - 1530

In this course, we will explore the method of the "written questionnaire" in the social variation of English, a method that has been sidelined for most of the 20th century until quite recently (sociolinguists generally prefer interviews, but not so quick!) Your textbook, The Written Questionnaire in Social Dialectology: History, Theory, Practice has played a role in the method’s revitalization in recent years and it will guide us through the process from start to finish. In this process, you’ll learn a bit a out World Englishes and an awful lot about English in Canada, what we call Canadian English: is eh Canadian? Is toque really Canadian (what is it, anyway?). We will try our hand at data collection to see which kind of questions "work" better and why for a linguistic variable of your choice. We will also aim to find patterns in national questionnaire data. Couch vs. chesterfield, parkade vs. garage, tom-EH-to vs. tom-AH-to? Every year, some of your research findings will make it into the book (look for the names T. Chambers, Hirota or Cheng in your textbook from previous classes). You will learn to use Excel and all the things you can do with (a marketable skill).

 

INSTRUCTOR: DANCYGIER, BARBARA
3 credits
Term 1, MWF 1200 - 1300

The Language of the Media

There has been much interest recently in the impact that contemporary media (print news and TV, but also social media) have on public discourse and public trust in information. In the course, we will study a range of language forms and communication genres to better understand the nature of contemporary public discourse and to build an informed approach to the communicative universe we live in. We will start by discussing selected language phenomena, such as types of figuration, linguistic constructions, and expressions of epistemic and emotional stance. After establishing introductory concepts, we will focus on several case studies, looking more specifically at four areas of media discourse: 1. News coverage, 2. Political discourse (speeches, election campaigns, social media responses), 3. Internet discourse (memes, Twitter), and 4. TV news and humorous commentary (such as late night shows).

Students will be expected to participate in in-class discussions and projects, collect their own media examples, and respond to take-home assignments.

 

INSTRUCTOR: DOLLINGER, STEFAN
3 credits
Term 2, TTh 1230 - 1400

ONLINE | SYNCHRONOUS

Canadian English: history, description, future

In this course we’ll reflect on the state of knowledge about Canadian English, defined as any variety of English spoken and used in Canada. We will distinguish between Standard Canadian English and all other forms of English used in Canada, including First Nations Englishes. We will approach Canadian English from sociolinguistic and sociohistorical perspectives: how did it come about? Why is it the way it is? Why do some not know much about it (perhaps you)? You will be coached to pick and research a topic within Canadian English of your choice, and critically assess the status quo in your chosen domain by way of a comprehensive literature review. The general area can be lexis, pronunciation, syntax, morphology, usage, or attitudes and perception, from which you would choose a narrower domain as a topic (e.g. First Nations terms in Canadian English; intensifiers in Canadian English; British influence in mid-20th century CanE). In a second stage, we will design the parameters for an empirical study in which we propose to address an existing gap in the literature. Your literature review and study design might be used for a BA thesis, Honor’s thesis or term paper and would give you a jumpstart on any of these projects.

Note, this course will be conducted EXCLUSIVELY online.

 

INSTRUCTOR: DANCYGIER, BARBARA
3 credits
Term 2, TTh 1530 - 1700

Cognitive Poetics

Language use in literary texts builds on standard forms and concepts, while pushing their meaning potential to the limits by extending or re-designing what is available. Such mechanisms of creativity are the subject matter of this course. To understand the processes involved and learn how textual meaning is built and received, we study cognitive approaches to language and apply the concepts to literary discourse and other creative discourse genres. We study poetry, narrative fiction, and drama, also by putting these genres in the context of contemporary discourse and visual culture. The concepts investigated show students how to connect the study of language and literature to an understanding of how the human mind processes and creates meaning. This approach, combining the study of language, literature, and conceptualization, is known as Cognitive Poetics.

 

INSTRUCTOR: STICKLES, ELISE
3 credits
Term 1, TTh 1230 - 1400

This class focuses on "everyday metaphors": the figurative language that we use all the time, over the course of casual conversations and throughout our lives, often without even realizing it. While we may think our colloquial use of language is mostly literal, we rely on metaphors to talk about all sorts of ideas and situations. For example, we may talk about "fighting" crime, "waging war" on a pandemic, or "battling" poverty. In all these cases, we are describing one type of concept - a serious societal challenge - in terms of another concept, physical combat. But what does it mean to describe a pandemic as a "war", versus a "wildfire" or a "journey"? Not only are these types of patterns pervasive throughout our language use, they also influence how we understand these concepts.

In this course, you will learn how to identify and analyze figurative language in a variety of texts and media, and also consider the persuasive role of metaphor as a cognitive phenomenon. In the first part of the course, we will learn about various types of figurative language (metaphor, metonymy, blending). In the second part, we will apply these theoretical concepts to a range of genres, from health care to poetry. We will also consider the role of figurative language beyond the written and spoken word, such as gesture, memes, and other forms of multimodality.

By the end of the course, students will be able to:

  • Identify and analyse figurative language in a variety of texts, genres, and media
  • Understand and apply core concepts in cognitive linguistics, including metaphor theory and frame semantics
  • Read and comprehend scholarly articles in the field of metaphor studies
  • Develop an original metaphor analysis and present it in spoken and written form
  • Engage in critical academic discussion with both peers and scholarly literature

Required textbook: Dancygier, Barbara, and Eve Sweetser. Figurative Language. Cambridge University Press, 2014.

INSTRUCTOR: DE VILLIERS, JESSICA
3 credits
Term 1, MW 1600 - 1730

Sounds and Words

This course explores and examines contemporary English linguistic structure at the level of sounds and words. It begins with a study of speech sounds. We study the articulation of sounds in English, methods for phonetic transcription and the possible sound combinations in English (phonology). We then study words, and the processes of word formation and word classification in English (morphology). Finally, we consider word meaning and look at a variety of approaches to appreciating the nuances of meaning in English words (lexical semantics). Our focus will be on developing skills for analysing these three components of language, with an eye toward understanding how they belong to one communication system.

Upon completion of this course, students will have:

  • a knowledge of the English sound system, including sounds that are used in speech production and their patterning in use
  • an understanding of the rules of English word formation and grammatical modification
  • a knowledge of different approaches to understanding lexical meaning
  • the ability to represent much of this knowledge diagrammatically
  • an appreciation of the nuances of meaning in human language and an acquaintance with the conceptual system underlying meaning.

Course evaluation: There will be 3 tests, 3 quizzes and a class participation mark. The tests are not cumulative. A variety of in-class, homework and test questions will be given, including definitions, fill in the blanks, problem solving and short answer questions.

Required Text: L. Brinton. (2010) The Structure of Modern English. (2nd ed.). Amsterdam/Philadelphia: John Benjamins. Chapters 1-6.

 

INSTRUCTOR: STICKLES, ELISE
3 credits
Term 2, TTh 1600 - 1730

This course explores and examines contemporary English phonology, morphology and lexical semantics. It begins with the study of speech sounds in English. We apply methods for phonetic transcription and study distinct sounds and possible sound combinations in English (phonology). We study the processes of word formation and word classification in English (morphology). We also study word meaning (lexical semantics) using a variety of approaches.

Upon completion of this course, students will:

  • understand the English sound system, including sounds that are used in speech production and the rules and patterns governing their use;
  • understand the rules of English word formation and grammatical modification;
  • understand different approaches to representing and analyzing lexical meaning;
  • demonstrate the ability to formally or diagrammatically represent this knowledge;
  • appreciate the nuances of meaning in human language and the conceptual system underlying it.

Required textbook: Brinton, Laurel J., and Donna M. Brinton. The Linguistic Structure of Modern English. John Benjamins, 2010.

INSTRUCTOR: DOLLINGER, STEFAN
3 credits
Term 1, TTh 1230 - 1400

ONLINE | SYNCHRONOUS

Welcome to this key course for any English major, minor and/or language enthusiast! Do not opt out of this course even if you can, just give it a try! Often considered the “tough” stuff of English that everyone wishes they knew, but few actually do, let’s together unlock the beauty of syntactic analysis. Let’s ask questions, let’s try out what the best (or “least bad”) classification for a given structure is! Use this knowledge of English syntax to teach, to sharpen up your own writing, or just to show off your grammatical prowess when you need to do so. Use the knowledge for any of your other languages (and learn to adapt it to these). With excerpts from both a traditional grammar textbook by very nice and capable linguists and sections from another textbook for a more functional approach, we will explore the idea of the word, the subject, the object, their forms and functions, and how they “play” together and learn, for instance, how an object is different from a complement (spelled with an “e”). No prior grammatical knowledge is required. Everyone welcome.

Note, this course will be conducted EXCLUSIVELY online.

INSTRUCTOR: DE VILLIERS, JESSICA
3 credits
Term 2, TTh 1100 - 1230

This course focuses on the structure of modern English beyond the level of the word. We study how words and phrases are combined in English sentence structure (syntax) from a generative perspective. Our focus will be on both simple and complex sentences. We will also study meaning in sentences (sentence semantics) and how language functions in context (pragmatics).

Upon completion of this course, students will have:

  • a knowledge of the structure of simple and complex sentences in English and the ability to represent this knowledge diagrammatically
  • an appreciation of the nuances of meaning in human language and a knowledge of the conceptual system underlying meaning
  • an understanding of the use of language in

Course evaluation: There will be 3 tests, 3 quizzes and a class participation mark. The tests are not cumulative. A variety of in-class, homework and test questions will be given, including problem solving, short answer, and multiple-choice questions, but the emphasis will be on representing English sentence structure diagrammatically.

Required Text: L. Brinton. (2010) The Structure of Modern English. (2nd ed.). Amsterdam/Philadelphia: John Benjamins. Chapters 7-11.

INSTRUCTOR: CAVELL, RICHARD
3 credits
Term 1, MWF 1400 - 1500

History of media and technological change; literary, rhetorical, or linguistic methods of inquiry.

INSTRUCTOR: FRANK, ADAM
3 credits
Term 2, TTh 0930 - 1100

Opening the Box: on the (pre)history of television

What can we discover about historical media and the technologies that underlie them through reading literary works? This course aims to answer this question through an exploration of the long history of television. Television emerged in fits and starts, in part from now defunct 19th- century technologies (such as telegraphy and phototelegraphy). It became a fixture in family homes after World War Two (in the US and elsewhere) on the model of radio. Television's history opens out onto broader histories which this course approaches by way of media archaeology as well as literary and cultural history. We begin from the idea that writing and print, themselves mediums, are particularly sensitive to the emergence of new media that pertain to writing (those based on -graphy technologies). By paying close attention to writing as well as to poetics (ideas about how writing works), we will explore the possibilities and limits that accompany new technologies, and the discourses by which they are understood. Note, our geographical focus will mostly, but not exclusively, be the United States. We are interested in the spatial and conceptual idea of "America" as it comes to be identified with so-called mass media in the twentieth century.

This course will be taught as a mix of lecture and discussion. In it we will read literary and theoretical texts, watch television, view films, and listen to radio as we seek to gain a deep historical sense of the medium.

INSTRUCTOR: ECHARD, SIAN
3 credits
Term 2, MWF 0900 - 1000

From Codex to Code

“Never judge a book by its cover,” we are often told, and yet we do judge books, not only by theircovers, but also by their typefaces, their illustrations, where they are filed in the bookstore or the library, and any number of other factors not apparently directly related to their content. This course willintroduce participants to book history, a discipline that unravels the complex relationships betweenparticular books, the texts they contain, the cultures that produced them, and the readers who encounter them.

D.F. McKenzie famously described bibliography as the sociology of texts. As we move through important moments in the history of book production, we will explore how materiality and meaninginteract, in a range of historical and cultural contexts. Along the way, we will learn about the many forms texts have taken over the centuries, from oral recitations to ebooks, and everything in between.

A unique feature of this course is that we will meet regularly in Rare Books and Special Collections in theBarber Learning Centre. Here, you will have the opportunity for hands-on experience with a widecollection of rare materials dating from the Middle Ages to the present. You will pursue your own originalresearch with our unique materials, informed by our discussions and readings focused on the role ofmodes of production, dissemination, and storage of text-objects in determining the reception and social function of texts.

INSTRUCTOR: CAVELL, RICHARD
3 credits
Term 2, MWF 1300 - 1400

Flaps and Foldouts: The History of the Movable Book

Children love popup books, but did you know that books with flaps and foldouts were how medicine wastaught for more than 200 years? You will learn about these and other non- conforming books through aseries of readings, as well as through interactions with the instructor’s collection of non-conforming books.

INSTRUCTOR: PARELES, MO
3 credits
Term 2, MWF 1000 - 1100

Old English vocabulary, grammar, and translation, with readings in poetry and prose. Credit will be granted for only one of ENGL 340 and ENGL 342.

INSTRUCTOR: ROUSE, ROBERT
3 credits
Term 2, MWF 1100 - 1200

Medieval Romance

Medieval romance (OF: romanz) was one of the most popular of medieval genres. First appearing in the twelfth century as the predominant mode of literary entertainment of the aristocratic courts of WesternEurope, romance narratives dominated European literature for much of the Middle Ages. Early romancestook as their theme the lives, battles, and loves of chivalric knights and ladies, but the romance genre was –over time – appropriated for purposes as diverse as religious instruction, national and global identity politics, and eventually parody and humour.

This course will examine the romances of medieval England during the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries,in what has been termed the great flowering of late medieval romance. During this period the genre became highly popular not only with the nobility, but also with the rising mercantile and gentry classes of England, and this changing audience – and the changing expectations that they brought with them – led toa literature diverse in both form and content. We shall be reading of knights and ladies, giants and dragons, incestuous fathers and wicked usurpers, fearsome "Saracens", malicious Faeries, children of the devil, lepers who bathe in baths of blood, and – of course – sex and sword-play. All in all, a bit like A Game of Thrones but with more difficult grammar.

INSTRUCTOR: PARATRIDGE, STEPHEN
3 credits
Term 1, MWF 1600 - 1700

Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales: A World of Words and a Sea of Stories

With the help of a reader-friendly edition and a series of structured but gentle lessons, you will acquirefacility in reading Chaucer’s Middle English. More importantly, you will learn how Chaucer makes use of his language’s power in assembling a series of narratives ostensibly told by the diverse company ofpilgrims he met on the way to Canterbury. The pilgrims’ tales create a conversation about many themes, including class, love, sex and gender, work, language, the nature of narrative itself, and the pleasures and travails of studenthood, and our class meetings will reflect the collection’s spirit with regular sessions ofopen discussion. We will consider the linguistic and literary innovations that led readers to considerChaucer the "father of English poetry” together with the sense of humour – by turns satirical, bawdy, andself-deprecating – that makes reading his poetry a constant joy.

INSTRUCTOR: SIRLUCK, KATHERINE
3 credits
Term 1, MWF 1000 - 1100

Human/Animal Hybridity and Navigation of Species Boundaries inRenaissance Literature and Drama

This course will focus on changing ideas of humans and animals, and human-animal relations in theRenaissance as expressed in the literature and drama of the time. We will explore the shifting paradigms governing the status and role of animals, beginning in classical antiquity and moving forward throughmedieval Europe to England in the Renaissance. In this period, the definition of the human is closely tied tothe definition of the animal. At one extreme species exist hierarchically, and in tension with each other,while elsewhere the borders between humans and animals are being crossed, and even erased. We willconsider how these factors are implicated in the political, philosophical, religious and social ideas of theperiod, and how they might influence the possibility of inter-species and same-species empathy. We will reflect particularly on how representations of animals, humans as animals, and human-animal hybrids aremade to figure in subject-formation, moral discourses, and especially in formulations of class, race, and gender relations in the English Renaissance. Our field of study will include both literary and theatricaltexts and other kinds of documents, from biblical accounts, classical natural history, and medievalbestiaries to records of animal trials, medical treatments, and anatomical studies. We will read accounts ofbear-baiting, menagerie keeping, hunting, falconry, and riding, and we will explore attitudes towardsanimals as pets, property, mounts, guards, hunters, musicians, and meat. For their assignments, students will choose a selection of books and articles from the burgeoning fields of Renaissance-focused Animal Studies and Eco-critical scholarship. Together, we will examine how some literary and dramaticworks use animals, and animal imagery, especially in order to interrogate, exalt, degrade, or otherwise mediate the contentious category of the human.

Texts: Edmund Spenser, The Faerie Queen, selections from Books 1, 2 & 3;

INSTRUCTOR: NARDIZZI, VINCENT
3 credits
Term 2, TTh 1100 - 1230

Renaissance Lyric Poetry

This course is an experiment in reading lyric poetry. We’ll use The Broadview Anthology (The Renaissanceand the Early Seventeenth Century) as our guide. During class sessions, we’ll read aloud with one another all the lyric poems included in it, from the early formulations of an "English” lyric tradition (the poems of Sir Thomas Wyatt and Henry Howard, Early of Surrey) to the vogue for sonnet sequences inspired by perhaps the era’s greatest poet (Sir Philip Sidney), to the devotional and erotic wit of earlier seventeenth-century poets (John Donne and George Herbert). Along the way we’ll also survey the poemsof two queens (Elizabeth I and Mary Stuart, Queen of Scots), of Sidney’s relatives (Mary Sidney Herbert and Lady Mary Wroth), and others (Aemilia Lanyer, Ben Jonson, William Shakespeare, and Christopher Marlowe). If we’re lucky, we’ll get to Milton.

We’ll want to think about why reading lyric poetry aloud is important. We’ll hone our skills in close reading.We’ll consider how poets imagine these lyrics in relation to reading, writing, manuscript circulation, andprint publication. We’ll reflect on different poetic forms. We’ll want to keep an eye out for the language ofmoney. And we’ll explore how what seemed an ever- expanding world to the English around 1600 could bemarvelously contracted into the "little rooms” of the lyric.

There will be 2 exams and 1 writing assignment.

INSTRUCTOR: BRITTON, DENNIS
3 credits
Term 1, MWF 1400 - 1500

Shakespeare and Race

Shakespeare wrote his plays at the same historical moment that English explorers were encountering peoples in the Americas, Africa, and Asia, peoples with beliefs, customs, and skin colors different fromtheir own. The "difference” of indigenous peoples, Africans, and Asians inspired a variety of feelings, andthe English would increasingly define themselves in opposition to non-European, non-White people. In thiscourse we will consider how Shakespeare’s plays represent racial difference, and how representations ofdifference produced a developing sense of White racial identity. We will read selected sonnets, Richard III, Henry V, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, The Merchant of Venice, Othello, and The Tempest.

INSTRUCTOR: SIRLUCK, KATHERINE
3 credits
Term 2, MWF 1400 - 1500

Shakespeare and the Age of Uncertainty

This course will focus primarily on the plays of Shakespeare, with some attention given to other Renaissance dramatic and non-dramatic works. As we read the plays, we will discuss cultural history, contemporary religious, philosophical, and political ideas, and elements of government, domestic life andsocial interaction relevant for these works. We will consider how these plays deal with Early Modernprescriptions for identity and value, and pervading ideological constructions of rank, race, gender, andsexuality. We will take account of contributing aesthetic traditions, and bear in mind the conditions influencing dramatic production, pondering the participation of Shakespeare’s plays in both the authorizedand subversive aspects of Elizabethan and Jacobean playing and audience reception. Shakespeare’stheatre can be seen as a commercial enterprise, licensed by the authorities, and dependent on royalpatronage, involving complex negotiations of class and subjectivity. It can also be seen as a marginal or liminal space wherein the dilemmas and dreams of Shakespeare’s time and now of our own can be evokedand given imaginative form; where competing voices find expression; where "things as they are” can bechallenged by the very manner of their representation. The dramatic poetry of Shakespeare is bothhistorical document and unfinished experiment - a boundlessly eventful experiential realm.

Students will study six plays, four with full coverage in the classroom and two with briefer coverage in class.We will also consider a handful of the sonnets.

William Shakespeare, Julius Caesar, As You Like It, Othello, Macbeth, Antony and Cleopatra, TheTempest

INSTRUCTOR: PAUL, GAVIN
3 credits
Term 1

ONLINE | ASYNCHRONOUS

"Author's pen" and "actor's voice": Shakespeare in Text and Performance

This course will explore the extent to which we as readers of Shakespeare’s tragedies, histories, andcomedies can remain engaged with his plays’ potential for realization onstage,in performance. Part of our focus will be historicist: we will consider the institutional and social conditionsattendant upon the original productions of the plays, as well as the ways in which the plays themselvesdramatize matters of affect and spectatorship. Our work will also explore the formal dramaturgy of the playsin order to think about how the texts register the nuance of performance in obvious ways (in stage directions and dialogue) and by appealing to the senses and to the emotions of a live audience. We willalso look at the editing, printing, and publishing of the plays in order to think about how the pagesimultaneously encodes and distorts performance for modern readers. Whenever possible, we will consider the performance history of the plays, with a particular emphasis on how modern adaptations forthe stage make use of (cut, modify, rearrange, reimagine) the playtext.

A detailed study of Shakespeare's works. (Specific course description to follow.)

INSTRUCTOR: HODGSON, ELIZABETH
3 credits
Term 2, MWF 1000 - 1100

Political Bodies, Social Selves: 17th century Literature

17th century England was a culture good at creating crisis: for itself, in its civil wars, and for others, in itsrapidly expanding colonialism. This was also a world fascinated by women’s powers, gender-fluidperformance, unruly workers, the idea of trees, the mysteries of the spirit, and the meaning of community.With a king who called himself the nursing mother of the nation, and exploitative cooperatives doing deals in India, with sermons described as "a making love to the congregation” and poems imagining Indigenouspeoples as the new Adam, 17th century English literature is packed with startling, complex, and importantmoments in the making of Englishness, Whiteness, gender, and citizenship. Violent, sexy, and witty, painful, nostalgic, and vivid, this literature speaks to our world in its own powerful and troubled voices.

Course-modules will include Class and Social Satire; Religious Believing; Violence and the Stage; Misogyny and Romance; Rhetorics of Early Colonialism; Myths of the Citizen. We’ll read pastoral satires, country-house poems, civil-war debates, blood-tragedies, amorous verse, and religious confessions (Amelia Lanyer; John Donne; Mary Wroth; John Webster; Ben Jonson; Walter Ralegh; Oliver Cromwell; Thomas Hobbes; Katherine Philips).

The course will be as interactive as I can make it: workshops, discussion, collaborative projects, group-work. You’ll have a custom anthology, no midterm, and lots of choice in your writing projects.

INSTRUCTOR: GOODING, RICHARD
3 credits
Term 1, MWF 1300 - 1400

Children in Time: The Making of Modern Childhood in Eighteenth-CenturyEngland

The century that separates the portraits of Master Montagu Drake and the Wood children (you can see themhere) saw deep changes in how children were understood and treated in the English-speaking world. By theend of the eighteenth century, for example, almost no one took seriously John Locke’s belief that childrenshould be prepared for the demands of adult life through cold baths, hard beds, and leaky shoes; and, as Lawrence Stone notes, the common parental practice of giving more than one child the same name and recycling the names of dead children had died out. In this course, we will examine how seventeenth- andeighteenth- century beliefs about childhood influenced writing for children and adolescents. We willconsider such matters as parent-child relations, 17th- and 18th-century educational models, the rise of achildren's book industry the emergence of cross-over texts (books written for adults but appropriated by younger readers), the rise of writing aimed at youth, and the commodification of childhood.

Some readings will focus on enduring childhood favourites such as Jonathan Swift's Gulliver's Travels,Daniel Defoe's Robinson Crusoe, and fairy tales by Charles Perrault and Jeanne-Marie Le Prince deBeaumont. Others will bring us into contact with texts that have fallen out of the canon of children's reading—the transparently junky and profit-driven A Little Pretty Pocket- Book, The History of Little Goody Two-Shoes, with its attempt hawking quack medicines and toys, and the short and bizarrely sadistic novel The Village School, which now reads as a how-to guide for violating the rights of children. Along the way, we'lltake some time to visit (and handle) tiny children's books housed in UBC's Rare Books and Special Collections and look at changing visual representations of childhood over the century.

INSTRUCTOR: POTTER, TIFFANY
3 credits
Term 2, TTh 1400 - 1530

Popular Culture in/and the Eighteenth Century

Studies of modern popular culture have illuminated the complex relationships that individuals and groups maintain with the larger artistic, political, economic, and social movements around them. Suchmethodologies, however, have rarely been applied to the eighteenth century.

Through detailed engagements with representations of popular culture, this class will work collaboratively to illuminate the relationships among high culture, women’s culture, and popular culture, and the ways inwhich the conventional masculinization of high culture constitutes the feminine as the popular. Recognitionof the historically naturalized links between the feminine and the popular in fiction (both frivolous, bothproducts of fashion, both determined by performance and consumption) will provide a scaffold for our work in other literary and cultural contexts that have previously been regarded as separated by less nuanced boundaries of high and low culture, including blockbuster plays like The Beggar’s Opera, shocking fiction likeBehn's The Fair Jilt, and the literary hissing match around the pop cult phenomenon Pamela (read in excerpt)and the most popular Regency text in modern times, Pride and Prejudice. While most of this course will focuson women and popular culture in the eighteenth century, we will end with a section on the ways in whicheighteenth-century women are depicted in modern popular culture, including fiction adaptations such asPride and Prejudice and Zombies and one other media adaptation.

Getting a head start? Read Pride and Prejudice for excellent summer reading that will save you time in November!

INSTRUCTOR: HUDSON, NICHOLAS
3 credits
Term 2, MWF 1500 - 1600

Race, Ethnicity and the British Empire in Eighteenth-Century Literature

The eighteenth-century marked massively expanded contact between the Western world and peoples across the globe. In the Americas, war erupted between the British, the French, the Spanish and the Portuguese over control of the Western Hemisphere, decimating indigenous people and robbing their territory. The trade of slaves from African to the Western hemisphere expanded greatly, but also sparked the first campaign for human rights, the abolitionist campaign. To the east, Europe continued to confront a great rival empire, the Ottoman Empire, and a rival religion to Christianity, Islam. The aim of this course is to trace the impact of these world-shaping events on British literature –including novels, travel accounts, poetry and drama. Partly through the influence of these work, Europeans began to develop the idea that the human race was divided into various "races” – "Caucasian,” "Negro,” "Asian,” etc. – which formed a hierarchy in which whites ruled "naturally” over other peoples. These developments have had a long legacy that helps us better to understand our cultural and political situation today.

Texts: Aphra Behn, Oroonoko; selection of captivity narratives; poems on the Inkle and Yarico legend; George Coleman the Younger, Inkle and Yarico; Olauda Equiano, The Interesting Narrative of GustavusVasa; anon., A Woman of Colour; Lady Mary Wortley Montagu, Turkish Embassy Letters; selection of abolitionist poetry; selected poems by Phillis Wheatley

Assessment: two short essays, a final paper and a take-home exam, plus attendance and participation

INSTRUCTOR: EARLE, BO
3 credits
Term 1, TTh 0930 - 1100

Romantic Literature

Romanticism has much to teach us about ourselves. Following the 18th Century revolutions in France and the U.S., Romanticism is the original cultural response to the same conflicted set of socio-historicalcircumstances that define our world today, combining ideals of individual freedom, social democracy and environmental sustainability with global consumer capitalism, imperialism, racism and patriarchy.Romanticism is modernity’s paradoxically collective, social preoccupation with what it means to lead aunique life of one’s own. Romanticism created global capitalism’s original ‘pop culture’ and simultaneouslypioneered pop culture’s capacity for social critique. Romanticism challenged readers to face socially taboo realities of suffering and desire, both as solitary readers and as members of a collective, literary ‘public.’ Romanticism probed ambiguities and ironies of self-mediation and self-awareness, anticipating our experience today of social media. Romanticism changed the basic function of literature from representingthe world to re-creating it. In John Keats’s terms, Romanticism fosters readers’ "negative capability” to live a "life of sensation rather than thought.” We will examine how sex, gender, race and national and economicidentity are re-written in Romantic poetry and philosophy and in the fiction of Jane Austen and Mary Shelley. As much as possible we will also explore echoes of course texts in popular culture today.

Required Texts:

  • Romanticism: An Anthology, Fourth Edition, ed. Duncan Wu;
  • Pride and Prejudice, Jane Austen;
  • Persuasion, Jane Austen;
  • Frankenstein (1818), Mary Shelley

INSTRUCTOR: TOMC, SANDRA
3 credits
Term 2, TTh 1100 - 1230

American Literature to 1890: Folk Horror

This course explores a subgenre of gothic horror called "Folk Horror.” Often concerned with obscure folk stories, macabre historical events (like the Salem Witch Trials), or tales told by traditionally minoritized populations, folk horror constructs itself as a genre in which marginal voices can speak. We will focus mainly on US writers who helped pioneer the genre but will also read some British fiction and watch several contemporary films. We will read stories and poems by such authors as Washington Irving, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Edgar Allan Poe, Sheridan Le Fanu,

H.P. Lovecraft, Angela Carter, and Toni Morrison. The films we will watch include The Wicker Man, Midsommer, The Witch, and A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night. We will read theories of horror and the gothic by Sigmund Freud, Julia Kristeva, and Slavoj Žižek.

INSTRUCTOR: EARLE, BO
3 credits
Term 2, MWF 0900 - 1000

Middlemarch: Roots and Branches

‘George Eliot”, the pseudonym of Marian Evans, wrote the preeminent Victorian novel, the greatest novel of the novel’s greatest era. But Middlemarch is praised more than it is read, and is actually a remarkably unusual book in many ways. Longer than War and Peace, Middlemarch’s page count is second to only one other novel, Proust’s In Search of Lost

Time. Trollope called Middlemarch the first "psychologically realistic” novel, and Virginia Woolf, less technically but more precisely, said it was "the first novel for grown-up people.” Both novelists read Middlemarch as uniquely ‘growing’ beyond prior novels’ naïve scope, anachronistically aristocratic scenarios and fairy-tale happy-endings. Middlemarch gives literary attention to a new, distinctly ‘modern’ experience of frustration and disappointment occasioned by impersonal forces of history and economic, political and cultural circumstances (and even, increasingly, random chance). Yet Middlemarch calls itself a "domestic epic” because it grants Homeric-scale attention to the routine tragedies of modern, mediocre, domestic life, and invites readers to view their own lives likewise. We will consider how Middlemarch depicts lives caught in the middle of emergent, modern forms of art, science, communication, transportation, and social, political, economic and sexual relations. We will explore Middlemarch as a singular artwork that is also representative of several key points of transition from Romanticism to Modernism in poetry, fiction, philosophy, painting, film, and new media.

 

INSTRUCTOR: DALZIEL, PAMELA
3 credits
Term 1, TTh 1100-1230

ONLINE | SYNCHRONOUS

Women Writing Victorian Literature: Realism, Romance, Fantasy

The course wil be conducted online using Zoom. Synchronous (real-time) attendance during our designated timeslot is required, as is synchronous audio participation in Zoom breakout rooms (you will need a working microphone).

Why is George Eliot’s Middlemarch, described by Virginia Woolf as "one of the few English novels written for grown-up people” and voted the greatest British novel in a BBC Culture poll, considered to be the quintessential Victorian novel? Why – and how – did Charlotte Brontë’s Jane Eyre become one of the most popular English novels ever written, inspiring successive generations of authors, visual artists, and filmmakers? Why is the first line of Elizabeth Barrett Browning’s sonnet XLIII, "How do I love thee? Let me count the ways,” so well known when the remainder of the poem, the Sonnets from the Portuguese sequence, and Barrett Browning herself are not?

In attempting to answer these and other literary and cultural questions, we will explore the ideological assumptions – with respect to gender, race, class, sexuality, mental and physical ability, the environment, ethics, religion, education, aesthetics, etc. – implicit in the literary works and in our (and the Victorians’) readings of them.

Novels: George Eliot, Middlemarch (Oxford World's Classics); Charlotte Brontë, Jane Eyre (Oxford World's Classics). Middlemarch is 785 pages and Jane Eyre is 440 pages: please do as much reading as possible before the course begins. Poems: Elizabeth Barrett Browning, selected poems, including "The Cry of the Children,” "The Runaway Slave at Pilgrim’s Point,” Sonnets from the Portuguese; Christina Rossetti, selected poems, including "In an Artist’s Studio,” "Winter: My Secret,” "Goblin Market.” Fairy tales: E. Nesbit, "The Prince, Two Mice, and Some Kitchen-Maids,” "Melisande: Or, Long and Short Division” (Nine Unlikely Tales for Children, Internet Archive). I have ordered Elizabeth Barrett Browning: Selected Poems (Broadview Press) and Christina Rossetti: Poems and Prose (Oxford World's Classics): both are excellent editions with very helpful introductions and notes; however, both are also somewhat expensive so, if you wish, you may use online editions (links will be posted on Canvas Library Online Course Reserves).

INSTRUCTOR: BOSE, SARIKA
3 credits
Term 2

ONLINE

British and Global literature from the nineteenth century and its intellectual and cultural contexts.

INSTRUCTOR: BAXTER, GISELE
3 credits
TERM 1, MWF 1500 - 1600

Haunted Landscapes of Gothic Modernism

"in the middle of my party, here’s death, she thought” - Mrs. Dalloway

Modernism was born out of seismic, revolutionary shifts in society and culture. World wars, political revolutions in Europe and beyond, murderous civil and colonial/imperial wars, economic depression, and successive waves of technological modernization offering mixed psychological and social benefits and injuries laid siege to assumptions that the world was in any way well-ordered or reliably understood. Its literature both reflects conscious innovation and experiment and sometimes opposes these passions for change. Its obsessions respond in complex ways to those seismic shifts in its representations of gender and sexuality, social structures, race and culture, in all cases often in terms of transgression.

And yet, in its drive to make things new, Modernist literature is often a haunted place: spectres of ancestry, of war, of places escaped from collide with the present moment, creating a dark, Gothic modernity. This troubled place will be our focus in the darkening days of autumn.

Core texts include Henry James, The Turn of the Screw (to be read as a Modernism precursor), Dorothy L. Sayers, Strong Poison; D.H. Lawrence, Women in Love; Virginia Woolf, Mrs.

Dalloway; James Joyce’s "The Dead” and Katherine Mansfield’s "Prelude” and "At the Bay”; plus perhaps one more work of short fiction.

Evaluation will be based on a midterm essay, a term paper requiring secondary academic research, a final exam, and participation in discussion.

Keep checking my blog (https://blogs.ubc.ca/drgmbaxter/) for updates concerning texts and requirements.

 

INSTRUCTOR: BRIGGS, MARLENE
3 credits
TERM 2, TTh 1530 - 1700

Modern Novels and Contemporary Crises: Transhistorical Approaches

English 366 engages with canonical and controversial Anglo-American novels on modern social crises. Between World War I (1914-1918) and World War II (1939-1945), many intellectuals confronted a world that seemed to be in ruins: the unsettling epoch stimulated aesthetic innovations and ideological risks in prose fiction. Attending closely to the contested issues and experimental modes of the era, our multidisciplinary discussions will encompass topics such as war and peace (Virginia Woolf, Mrs. Dalloway and Ernest Hemingway, The Sun Also Rises); industry and ecology (D. H. Lawrence, Lady Chatterley’s Lover); and fascism and democracy (Richard Wright, Native Son and George Orwell, Nineteen Eighty-Four). The questions raised by the interwar novel resonate today. Hence, this class highlights transhistorical approaches to modern fictions to explore contemporary struggles to re-imagine forms of collectivity in the midst of protracted military conflicts, accelerating environmental degradation, and persistent civil divisions. The course requirements may include a midterm, a major essay, and a final examination. Please note that discretion is advised: this course focuses on mature subject- matter.

INSTRUCTOR: ZEITLIN, MICHAEL
3 credits
Term 1, MWF 1000 - 1100

War and American Modernism

In this course we will explore the emergence of modernist form from the wreckage of the First World War.

Primary readings will include the following:

  • Sigmund Freud, "Thoughts for the Times on War and Death" (1915)
  • Ellen La Motte, The Backwash of War (1916)
  • Hervey Allen, Toward the Flame: A Memoir of the First World War (1918)
  • S. Eliot, "Ulysses, Order and Myth" (1923)
  • Ernest Hemingway, In Our Time (1925)
  • William Faulkner, Soldiers' Pay (1926)
  • Ernest Hemingway, A Farewell to Arms (1929)
  • William Faulkner, As I Lay Dying (1930)
  • D., Tribute to Freud (1933/1944/1956)

In our writing assignments (short essays, a final exam) and classroom discussions we will practice the art of interpretation and close reading.

 

INSTRUCTOR: SHARPE, JAE
3 credits
Term 1, MWF 1400 - 1500

Artificial Intelligence and Robotics in Contemporary U.S. Literature

This course considers contemporary American literature that has taken up the questions of how intelligence and subjectivity have changed in the Information Age. What are the cognitive effects of our daily exposure to tremendous amounts of content on social media? How has our relationships with our various Internet-connected devices influenced how we understand our own humanness? These authors consider the question of what characterizes the human in an age where machines can perform many of the functions of the human brain, and they ask us to consider how such a digitized condition has ripple effects on U.S. democracy, labor, and social life.

Students will write two midterm essays and a final exam. Texts are likely to include Philip K. Dick’s Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?, Don DeLillo’s Zero K and The Silence, Neal Stephenson’s Snow Crash, and Jennifer Egan’s A Visit from the Goon Squad.

 

INSTRUCTOR: JAMES, SUZANNE
3 credits
Term 1, MWF 1300 - 1400

Literary Responses to South Africa’s Truth and Reconciliation Commission

After the fall of South Africa’s racist apartheid regime in the early 1990’s and the first free elections of 1994, Nelson Mandela’s government faced the daunting task of building a new democratic society. Arguing that the injustices of the past needed to be confronted in order to move forward, and that “[i]t is only by accounting for the past that we can become accountable for the future,” the South African parliament passed an act creating a Truth and Reconciliation Commission. The goal of this TRC was “to bring about unity and reconciliation by providing for the investigation and full disclosure of gross violations of human rights committed in the past.”

We will begin our exploration of literary responses to this ambitious enterprise with two non-fiction works: Country of My Skull, Antje Krog’s powerful first-hand account of the hearings of the Commission, followed by Pumla Gobodo-Madikizela’s memoir, A Human Being Died That Night. This will be followed by a discussion of selected poetry and three novels. Texts will be discussed in the context of South Africa’s historical legacy, in terms of the specific impact and legacy of the TRC, and as literary explorations of broader issues of social justice and reconciliation.

Please note: This course is listed as both English 370A and African Studies 370. Both courses are identical.

INSTRUCTOR: LEE, CHRIS
3 credits
Term 2, TTh 1400 - 1530

Asian Diaspora Literature and Culture

How do Asian diasporic writers and artists tell stories about migration, displacement, and identity? How do individual and communal stories engage with the past and imagine alternative futures? What ethical questions are raised when stories contend with histories and lived experiences of violence and discrimination? How can literature, film, and other forms of media help us understand a diverse global city like Vancouver? These questions are especially urgent at a moment of resurgent anti-Asian racism around the world as the current global pandemic continues to reveal and exacerbate existing social inequities and vulnerabilities.

This course examines a selection of literary and media texts representing different Asian diasporic communities and histories. Authors and artists may include SKY Lee, Theresa Hak Kyung Cha, Phinder Dulai, Souvankham Thammavongsa, Ruth Ozeki, Richard Fung, Ali Kazemi, and others. Topics for discussion will include settler relations, migration and displacement, family and kinship, language and translation, war and memory, refugee displacements and globalization. Throughout the course, you are encouraged to engage with local Asian Canadian cultural production both on and off campus. Course assignments may include activities such as social media, archival research, and digital media production (no previous experience required). In lieu of a final exam, students will complete a creative or critical project.

 

INSTRUCTOR: MCCORMACK, BRENDAN
3 credits
Term 1, MWF 1200 - 1300

Storying and Reading the Land in Canadian Literatures

Hidden in wonder and snow, or sudden with summer, This land stares at the sun in a huge silence

Endlessly repeating something we cannot hear.

Inarticulate, arctic.

--F.R. Scott, "Laurentian Shield” (1945)

Now, I’m going to tell you something

This stump—you think it’s a stump—but that’s my grandfather. He’s very, very old man.

Old, old man.

He can talk to you.

--Harry Robinson (Syilx), "You Think It’s a Stump” (1992)

The distinction between reading the land as an "inarticulate” space of "huge silence” and identifying with it as a living relation reflects differences between Western and Indigenous approaches to land and ecology. The historical formation of "Canadian literature” was supported by writers and critics who mapped onto ostensibly "new” territory ideas about the sublime beauty or terror of a vast, unpopulated landscape—ideas like "wilderness” and "the North” that became tied to national identity, supported the work of "developing” lands and resources, and remain powerfully sedimented in national thought. These dominant narratives displaced not only the storied knowledge of Indigenous peoples who have lived on and with the land for millennia, but other complex relations to place and environment expressed by diverse peoples within Canada’s physical and social landscapes. In this class we will seek to understand how representations of land and non-human "nature” in Canadian literatures are mediated by these differences and implicated in the historical production of cultural sensibilities that have naturalized the claims to land and belonging of some while disavowing those of others. How does literature claim land? How has Canadian literature functioned as a discourse in the stabilization and destabilization of settler-colonial territoriality? How are contemporary writers destroying the land and human relations with it in terms of decolonial, environmental, and social justice?

In this course we’ll take up these and other questions as we develop a historical perspective on the complex and political relationship between literature and the land beneath our feet. We will explore a range of Canadian texts from settler, Indigenous, and diasporic writers—crossing multiple genres, spanning the early 20th century to the present, and ranging from the Pacific coast to the Arctic—that invite us to consider how land and literature intersect with (among other concerns) the politics of place, colonialism and decolonial resurgence, (im)migration, race, gender, urban space, ecocriticism, and environmental activism. In particular, our selections will invite us to consider what it means to read the land from our current location in Vancouver and British Columbia, sites of natural beauty as well as complex struggles over land, sovereignty, and displacement.

 

INSTRUCTOR: LEE, TARA
3 credits
Term 2, MWF 1200 - 1300

Hunger, Consumption, Dis/connection: Food in Contemporary Canadian Literature

”There is a simple recipe for making rice” (Thien, "Simple Recipes”). Consider the act of preparing rice: the shock of the cold water, the grains of rice between fingers, and the alchemy of the cooking process. This course will delve into food as metaphor and material dis/locator in a variety of contemporary Canadian texts. We will collectively engage in texts that consider food as a contact zone of various cultures, identities, and materialities, as well as a marker of privilege, access, and belonging. Food as a marker of Self, and as a way of negotiating the abject will also figure in our discussions. We will end the course by considering questions of over- consumption, corporatized food, and industrial agriculture in a near future dystopian space, as well as shifts towards the local and plant-based eating. The role of food in relation to temporality, eco-culture, colonial nationalism, and, ultimately, restoration at a personal and community level will be examined over the span of the term. The course will also forge connections within the class through experiential exercises that get us theorizing our relationship to various food cultures within Canada, territory, and nearby sites of food production.

 

INSTRUCTOR: STEWART, FENN
3 credits
Term 1

ONLINE

Canadian Literature

In this course, we will be reading, thinking, writing, and speaking about Canada and Canadian literature. These are contested terms, concepts, and "territories.” What is Canada? How did it get this way? What is Canadian literature, or "Canlit"? What is its history and present context? Why do some writers want to "break up” with Canlit, or call it a "dumpster fire”? We'll be reading and listening to poetry, fiction, non-fiction, and interviews; watching film and video clips; writing discussion board posts and essays; and developing creative projects.

 

INSTRUCTOR: HUNT, DALLAS
3 credits
Term 1, MWF 1500 - 1600

Indigenous writing and cultural expression in national and/or international contexts.

 

INSTRUCTOR: MCCORMACK, BRENDAN
3 credits
Term 2, MWF 1200 - 1300

Stories in New Skins: Transformation, Adaptation, and Innovation in Indigenous Literatures

In Stories in a New Skin: Approaches to Inuit Literature, scholar Keavy Martin turns to a recurring trope of transformation in Inuit stories—humans and animals exchanging their skins— to conceptualize the inherent adaptability of Inuit intellectual traditions. This course, adapting Martin’s metaphor and extending its scope to a wide range of literary arts from northern Turtle Island (Canada), will examine a variety of Indigenous storytelling cultures through the prisms of transformation, adaptation, and innovation. Transformations are a prominent feature in many Indigenous cosmologies and narrative traditions, though our focus will not be (primarily) on instances of transformation within stories. Rather, this course will invite us to explore the complex political, cultural, and aesthetic questions that arise when we consider the various ways that Indigenous stories themselves are, or have been, transformed, adapted, and (re)published in new forms, genres, and media. How do stories change "skins,” and why? What forces and motivations propel transformation or adaptation? The metaphor of changing skins is neither benign nor simply celebratory; it has complex ties to both renewal and violence, generative innovation and destructive disfiguration. On one hand, Canada’s literary and publishing history has often subjected Indigenous writers, texts, and knowledges to appropriation and harmful editing practices that have transformed or distorted Indigenous narratives to suit dominant ideals. On the other hand, and despite the eliminatory efforts of settler-colonialism—including its fictions that delimit "authentic” Indigenous cultures to a static, unchanged past—Indigenous literary artists continue to make tradition new, storying vibrant living cultures in diverse genres and technologies of representation.

With this ambivalence in mind, we’ll approach a historically and generically diverse selection of creation stories, orature, life-writing, fiction, poetry, animation, comics, film, and new media to consider the many new "skins” and remarkable breadth of contemporary Indigenous narrative traditions in Canada. From the publishing transformations of Maria Campbell’s pathclearing autobiography Halfbreed (1973) to the digital sci-fi retelling of the Haudenosaunee creation story in Skawennati’s "She Falls for Ages” (2017), our texts will prompt us to critically analyze, rigorously discuss, and creatively engage the possibilities and discomforts of transformation as stories adapt, write back, reimagine, and remediate Indigenous pasts, presents, and futures.

 

INSTRUCTOR: GIFFEN, SHEILA
3 credits
Term 1, MWF 1300 - 1400

Making a Liveable World: Global HIV/AIDS Writing

"The space between life and death is an in between space, but it is not silence,” writes Yvonne Vera, "it is the place of narration.” This course analyses a global archive of literary responses to the HIV/AIDS epidemic and asks how artists and writers narrate the liminal space between life and death through vital acts of world-making and survival. Taking up poetry, novels, memoirs and films from South Africa, Lebanon, Antigua, the U.S., and Canada, we will consider how the HIV/AIDS epidemic connects to longer histories of globalization, coloniality, sexuality, and race. What are the politics of representation that surround AIDS as an "epidemic of signification” (Treichler)? How have discourses of racialized contagion and sexual degradation shaped public perceptions of the HIV/AIDS pandemic? How do artists and writers respond to such stigmas and make room for life-sustaining practices of freedom faced with death?

Guided by critical readings in the medical humanities and postcolonial theory, we will approach these questions from the perspective of our ongoing pandemic present. Central to our course will be a sustained reflection on subjectivity and writing: how do authors experiment with voice and form to convey the entanglement of illness, eroticism, and mortality? How do the imperialist politics of capitalist globalization shape conceptions of sexuality, race, and embodiment? Reading across transnational and diasporic literatures, we will consider how authors respond to the intersecting crises of HIV/AIDS and make a world that is liveable through writing.

Course Readings (subject to change): Phaswane Mpe, Welcome to Our Hillbrow (2001), Jamaica Kincaid, My Brother (1997), David Wojnarowicz, Close to the Knives (1991), Rabih Alameddine, Koolaids (1998) as well as shorter readings and texts by Assotto Saint, Nishant Shahani, Susan Sontag, Cindy Patton, Gayatri Spivak, Kylie Thomas, Sisonke Msimang, Neville Hoad, Rinaldo Walcott, and Bud Osborn.

 

INSTRUCTOR: PHILIP, KAVITA
3 credits
Term 1, TTh 1230 - 1400

Decolonial South Asia's Speculative Futures

The "Global South” is an umbrella term referencing the emergence of "post-colonial nations” after a wave of decolonization that occurred in the middle of the twentieth century.This course investigates the global connections between politics, development and literature sparked by this mid-century paradigm-shift. Taking up South Asian decolonization as an exemplary case study, we will read speculative fiction from the region, paired with historical, political, theoretical essays on Global South histories of decolonization, development, and political radicalism. Through an exploration of how the British Empire’s "crown jewel” shook off the yoke of settler colonialism and sought to define its place in the mid twentieth century’s decolonizing world, we will formulate and debate larger questions about the meaning of the "Global South” and the cultural, political, economic importance of the six decades following the end of colonialism. What did decolonization mean, politically and culturally? What kinds of literary and cultural movements did it inspire? How did dreams of political freedom influence theories of utopia and experiments in fiction?

 

INSTRUCTOR: JAMES, SUZANNE
3 credits
Term 2

Coming of Age from the Margins: Youth, Migration, and Contemporary World Literature

This asynchronous online course draws on a range of texts from around the world to ask how contemporary literature has represented and responded to crucial issues that mark our experience of the 21st century. Focusing on the stories of young protagonists from a diverse range of settings, we will explore how migration shapes what it means to be young in the modern world, and how youth shapes our experiences of migration. Drawing on novels, short stories, an autobiographical graphic novel, and a film, this course encourages students to think about questions of belonging, race, gender, and sexuality beyond the familiar frameworks provided by the nation-state and traditional literary forms.

 

INSTRUCTOR: KIM, CHRISTINE
3 credits
Term 2, TTh 930 - 1100

Making the Inhuman

Within political-legal discourses of human rights and ethical appeals to humanity, the human appears as a figure to be protected and often even saved. As an ideal, the human subject is coded as inclusive and universal. But in practice, the human has often been used to represent more privileged populations in the global north and relegated others to the categories of the sub-human or inhuman. In this course, we will examine the human in relation to discourses of plants, technology, zombies, and rights in order to engage with the systems of power and histories of oppression that have produced and mobilized the figures of the human and the inhuman. By taking feminist, decolonial and historicist approaches to the postwar period, we will centre the question of how minoritized subjects have been excluded from social imaginings of the human. Our readings will consist of contemporary works of literature, film, and critical theory, primarily by racialized and Indigenous thinkers from North America and Asia, that help us critique current conceptualizations of the human and imagine alternatives.

Required Texts (subject to change)

  • Cherie Dimaline, The Marrow Thieves
  • Han Kang, The Vegetarian
  • Larissa Lai, Tiger Flu
  • Krys Lee, How I Became a North Korean
  • Jordan Peele (dir.), Get Out

Additional readings will be made available through UBC Library or Canvas. I am hoping that Get Out will be made available through UBC Library.

Course Evaluation (subject to change)

  • Participation 10%
  • Discussion Questions 10%
  • Reading Quizzes (3x5%) 15%
  • Short Essay 25%
  • Research Paper Proposal 5%
  • Research Paper 35%

 

INSTRUCTOR: DINAT, DEENA
3 credits
Term 2, TTh 1400 - 1530

A variety of genres organized by cultural movements, critical issues, theoretical approaches, and/or geopolitical regions.

 

INSTRUCTOR: AL-KASSIM, DINA
3 credits
Term 2, TTh 1100 - 1230

Theoretical work concerned with confronting, resisting and overcoming various forms of colonialism and globalization.

 

INSTRUCTOR: BAIN, KIMBERLY
3 credits
Term 2, TTh 1100 - 1230

Examines theories of intervention, dissent and social engagement.

 

INSTRUCTOR: MCNEILLY, KEVIN
3 credits
Term 2, TTh 1230 - 1400

Body Rhythms: Pulse, Surge, and Flow

In this course, we will mix conceptual-theoretical work with practice-based research to think about the aesthetics and the cultural politics of embodiment, particularly around the question of rhythm. How do we come to keep time with ourselves as corporeal, material creatures? How are bodies framed, informed, and transformed by various registers of the rhythmic—social, haptic, aesthetic, diurnal, spatial, biotic, epochal? We will consider the body as a network of flows, as we work through a variety of excerpted foundational readings from Aristotle to Julia Kristeva. We will likely touch on the thinking of, among others, Annemarie Mol, Henri Meschonnic, Erin Manning, Michel de Certeau, Isabelle Stengers, David Farrier, and David Abram to start to think about poetic rhythm, dance and kinetics, percussion, walking, deep time, historicity, refrain, and extemporaneity. We’ll probably engage with texts by William Shakespeare, Gerard Manley Hopkins, Claudia Rankine, Don McKay, and Gwendolyn Brooks, with the comics of Lynda Barry, with the drum music of Paul Motian and Milford Graves, with the performance poetry of Moor Mother, among others. Students are invited to bring their creative practices into the classroom, to discover how their own thinking might mesh with these understandings of how rhythm manifests in our contemporary lives, of how rhythm makes meaning happen. How might rhythm help shape our understandings of race, gender, indigeneity, (dis)ability, class and other significant fabrics of intersubjectivity and community? While students can expect to encounter writing and art that can often seem challenging and daunting, this course is designed as an introduction to contemporary theories of the body, and provides students with an opportunity to begin to evolve their own theoretically informed critical and creative practices.

 

INSTRUCTOR: MCNEILL, LAURIE
3 credits
Term 2, MWF 1400 - 1500

"Who Tells Your Story?" Power and Disruption in Contemporary Auto/biography

In Lin-Manuel Miranda’s biographical (maybe even auto/biographical) musical, Alexander Hamilton is kind of obsessed with life narratives, and "who lives, who dies, who tells your story?” Miranda/Hamilton’s refrain suggests the potential power of getting to tell your own story, on your own terms, and the importance for public and personal memory of having your story told. In this course, we’ll study the practices of auto/biography to think about how their authors shape identities for themselves and others, use the space of life writing to testify to their experiences, and, in the process, make space in public memory and imagination for the stories they have to tell.

Course texts will be finalized in the fall, and will include examples from several genres of contemporary auto/biography, including documentary, theatre and/or comedy, and memoir. Assignments will include a paratextual study, blogs or discussion posts, peer review and in-class contributions, and a traditional research paper or autoethnographic analysis.

INSTRUCTOR: JAMES, SUZANNE
3 credits
Term 1, MWF 1100 - 1200

Writing for Children and Young Adults from Africa and the African Diaspora

Children’s literature addressing the lives and concerns of Black youth, both in Africa and the African diaspora, is a flourishing sub-genre. In this course we will explore a range of contemporary texts including Akwaeke Emezi’s Pet, Kacen Callender’s Felix Ever After, Lawrence Hill’s Beatrice and Croc Henry, Jason Reynolds’ Long Way Down, Jacqueline Woodson’s, Brown Girl Dreaming, Adaobe Tricia Nwaubani’s Buried Beneath the Baobob Tree, Angie Thomas’ The Hate U Give, and Nnedi Okorafor’s Akata Witch. These very diverse texts explore issues of identity, black representation, police violence, trans and queer experience, and include works of realism, fantasy, and two novels in poems.

As well as focusing on the core texts, we will engage with theoretical perspectives on children’s literature and YA fiction, and its increasingly fluid contemporary incarnations. Students will be encouraged to develop independent critical responses to both texts and theories. Assessment will include a critical response, an in-class essay, a term paper and a final examination.

INSTRUCTOR: SAUNDERS, MARY ANN
3 credits
Term 2, MWF 1300 - 1400

Euphoria Kids: The Birth of Transgender and Non-Binary Children’s and Young Adult Literature

This section of ENGL 392 course offers the unique opportunity to investigate an entirely new body of children’s and YA literature as it is emerging: fiction about trans and nonbinary (trans/nb) children and youth, written by trans/nb writers. Gender-diverse children and youth are not new; their historical existence is well documented. However, the idea that transgender childhoods might be legitimate childhoods is comparatively new in western culture, gradually emerging into broader cultural discourse and awareness only over the last two decades. This shift, welcomed by many and passionately resisted by others, has placed trans and non-binary children and youth in the centre of a political battleground being fought out in legislatures and courts across the US and in the UK. Against this backdrop—indeed, almost certainly because of it—we have seen an extraordinary flowering of trans/nb children’s and YA fiction. A decade ago there were virtually no such books but, since 2015, they have been appearing with increasing speed and urgency. In our course, we will investigate some of the picture books, middle grade books, and young adult fiction which comprise this vital body of literature, as well as consider the cultural context out of, and against which, it has emerged.

The course title is borrowed from Alison Evans’ YA novel Euphoria Kids, which imagines a world in which gender-expansive young people’s identities are, before anything else, a source of joy to themselves and those who love them. This course represents a small step towards realizing that world.

 

INSTRUCTOR: GOODING, RICHARD
3 credits
Term 2, MWF 1500 - 1600

Representations of the Anthropocene in Writing for Youth

"Are humans now overwhelming the great forces of nature?"

When Will Steffen, Paul Jozef Crutzen, and John McNeill posed this question in the title of a 2007 article, they already knew the answer. A few years earlier, while attending a conference in Mexico, the Nobel Prize-winning chemist Crutzen had vigorously asserted "We are in the Anthropocene!," using a word that had been circulating informally among researchers since the 1980s. Within months the term had begun to appear in scientific journals, and it has since become the usual way of referring to the geological period in which human activity has become the dominant influence on the earth system — the interactions between our planet's physical, chemical, and biological processes. In their 2007 article, however, Steffen, Crutzen, and McNeill's immediate concern was not whether humans were altering the planet, but what to do about it.

In the last two decades the Anthropocene has become a term that, perhaps above all else, points to the fraught relationship between us and the planet we inhabit, raising important questions of personal and political responsibility. One place these questions are urgently urgently is in writing addressed to young readers — writing that, historically, has been charged with shaping the young for future roles as parents, citizens, and consumers. In this course we will examine recent young adult and children's writing that addresses the effects of human action on the environment, with particular attention to climate change, extinction, and geopolitical conflict. We’ll begin with Philippe Squarzoni’s award-winning Climate

Changed (2012), a graphic memoir that has attracted attention from both teens and adults. From there we’ll turn our attention to an environmental novel aimed at younger readers, Carl Hiassen’s Hoot (2002), followed by Dry (2018), Neal Shusterman’s young adult novel about the collapse of society during a water shortage. We’ll then consider two dystopian representations of post-crisis worlds, Philip Reeve’s Mortal Engines (2001) and M.T. Anderson’s Feed (2002), before rounding out the term with Ann Nocenti and David Aja’s graphic novel The Seeds (2021). Along the way, we’ll consider how YA literature represents questions of resource extraction, personal and generational responsibility, and environmental activism.

INSTRUCTOR: BOSE, SARIKA
3 credits
Term 1

ONLINE

Genres and texts written for and appropriated by young readers.

INSTRUCTOR: TE BOKKEL, NATHAN
3 credits
Term 2, TTh 0930 - 1100

Ecocriticism and the environmental humanities encompassing more specific methodologies, such as queer ecology, ecofeminism, postcolonial, decolonizing, and transnational environmentalisms, environmental art.

INSTRUCTOR: LUGER, MOBERLEY
3 credits
Term 2, MWF 1400 - 1500

The Hatred of Poetry (or Poetry and/in Crisis)

This course welcomes poetry lovers, poetry haters, or those ambivalent poetry readers looking to graduate with more experience in the genre. Our goal will be to assess poetry’s place in our lives and cultures and we will do this through close readings of select poems as well as through discussions of films, novels, and essays about poetry. We will consider how poems respond to crisis—public crises (eg. terrorism, war) and personal ones—as we also consider whether the genre is, as some warn, itself "in crisis.” Is poetry dead, as critics seem perpetually to declare? Where does it lurk, on what occasions does it emerge, and how does it function in our social and political landscapes?

 

INSTRUCTOR: JUSTICE, DANIEL
3 credits
Term 2, TTh 1400 - 1530

Novels and short stories organized by thematic approach, cultural movements, critical issues, and/or geopolitical regions.


400-level Courses

INSTRUCTOR: SMILGES, J. LOGAN
3 credits
Term 1, Tuesdays 1000 - 1200

Queer Rhetorics in Crisis

If queer folks know how to do anything well, it’s how to survive a crisis. By “survive,” I don’t mean to suggest that queer folks don’t die—we certainly do. What I mean is that queer people learn from an earlyage how to live in crisis, to live on through crisis, and to forge relationships with others in spite of crisis. Itcould be said that crisis—whether in our families, our schools, our communities, or our countries—is whatdrives queerness to begin with: we are rendered queer by the alleged crisis of our being in the world. Weare embodied crises surviving crises.

This course adopts rhetorical theory as a guiding heuristic to explore how crisis informs queer identities,aesthetics, and resistance efforts. From carceral logics, to medical models, to the AIDS epidemic, queer people have long wrestled with existing crisis discourses to understand themselves. And in light of theCOVID-19 pandemic, we are reminded that among the chief aims of queer rhetorics is to unpack how these crisis discourses simultaneously oppress queer people, even as they make possible new forms of intimacyand kinship. It is this tension between oppression and possibility that will drive our class discussions and, perhaps, help us to imagine new modes of survival for our own individual and collective crises.

Students can expect to learn about historical and contemporary crises affecting queer people from a multi-axis perspective, how to evaluate various resistance strategies used by queer people, how to apply rhetorical concepts to a range of cultural issues and contexts, and how to leverage one’s relation to power towardcollective survival. The course assessments will be primarily tied to a cumulative report that each student willwrite over the course the semester, responding to a crisis of their choosing.

INSTRUCTOR: DE VILLIERS, JESSICA
3 credits
Term 2, Tuesdays 1400 - 1600

Discourse and Analysis

Discourse analysis is an important area within language study that typically involves exploration of avariety of linguistic features and functions to understand meaning making in texts. Aspects of language use examined can include semantics, syntax, phonological and phonetic structures, lexical choices, conversation skills and narrative structure. Analyses typically involve systematic descriptions of texts or corpora, with a focus on understanding how language is used in context. Analyses of discourse may also highlight how language use functions to construct and maintain social understanding of the world. In thisseminar, students develop skills in performing discourse analyses and in evaluating discourse analysis research. Readings include classic and recent research papers in linguistic discourse analysis, with emphasis on information structure, conversation and interaction, hesitation phenomena, narrative analysis,multimodality and indirectness. A key part of learning discourse analysis is doing it. Students will thereforecollect and transcribe some data at the beginning of the term.

INSTRUCTOR: SAUNDERS, MARY ANN
3 credits
Term 1, Mondays 1000 - 1200

“I Want to Live in a World Where Everyone Has to Choose Their Gender”: New Fiction by Trans and Non-Binary Writers

This seminar’s title—“I want to live in a world where everyone has to choose their gender”— comes from Torrey Peters’ Infect Your Friends and Loved Ones, a hauntingly topical 2016 novella about a viralpandemic. If Peters’ novella seems a story for our time, so too are works by scores of other trans and non-binary writers in a time when some governments have been moving towards recognizing the citizenship andbelonging of gender-diverse people while others claw back freshly won, fragile human rights, and when anyone on the internet is likely to have an opinion about the legitimacy of trans identities and lives. Theseare, indeed, times of both turmoil and exciting change for gender-diverse people, which may partiallyexplain why the last decade has seen an astonishing flowering of work by trans and non-binary authors. In 2012 it would have been difficult to imagine the trans and non-binary literary landscape of 2022.

These writers work across an array of genres, including science fiction and fantasy, children’s picture books and YA novels, graphica, slice-of-life realism, historical fiction, and experimental fiction whichcollapses boundaries between genres. While the reading list is not yet finalized (there is an embarrassment of riches to choose from!) we will certainly read Vancouver writer Hazel Jane Plante’s Little Blue Encyclopedia (for Vivian), Rivers Solomon’s An Unkindness of Ghosts, and Jordy Rosenberg’s Confessions of the Fox.

INSTRUCTOR: DEER, GLENN
3 credits
Term 1, Tuesdays 1200 - 1400

The Culinary Imagination: Reading Culture Through Food, Cooking, and Eating

Food, cooking, and eating are biologically necessary and socially powerful: we produce and cook food tosurvive, but also to reinforce social bonds, to celebrate tradition, to evoke memories of home, to competewith other cooks, to impress the eater, and even to beguile and seduce.

This course will explore food in literature, particularly life narratives, cookbook selections, and films across different cultures and borders, from the transnational to local Vancouver contexts. The production of foodis essentially linked to histories of empire, colonial power, capital, racialized and gendered labour, and ecological change. Our discussions will explore these intersections.

Readings will include selections from Gitanjali Shahani (Food and Literature), Amitav Ghosh (TheNutmeg’s Curse), Sandra Gilbert (The Culinary Imagination) , Monique Truong (The Book of Salt), MFK Fisher (How to Cook a Wolf), Cheuk Kwan (Have You Eaten Yet?), Fred Wah (Diamond Grill), and Austin Clarke (Pigtails ‘n’ Breadfruit). Tasteful excerpts from cookbooks by local artist Janice Wong and the local anthology edited by Brandy Lien Worrall-Soriano, Eating Stories: A Chinese Canadian and Aboriginal Potluck, will be sampled. Films will include Babette’s Feast, Juzo Itami's Japanese "noodle western" Tampopo, Ang Lee's Eat Drink Man Woman, and the restaurant documentaries of Cheuk Kwan. See hisfabulous website at http://www.chineserestaurants.tv.

We will host some class dialogue with food writers and filmmakers, and students will be able to researchlocal restaurants, gardens, or farms as final projects.

Multimedia examples of previous student projects for my food-themed courses can be found at thefollowing Richmond Museum exhibit, “Our Journeys Here” (2017-2018)

LITERARY TEXTS AND LIFE NARRATIVES:

  • Fred Wah, Diamond Grill (NeWest 1996)
  • F.K. Fisher, How to Cook a Wolf (North Point 1942) and The Gastronomical Me (North Point 1943; you might consider purchasing The Art of Eating: 50thAnniversary Edition which contains both of these Fisher titles and more
  • Monique Truong, The Book of Salt (Mariner Books 2004)
  • Sara Suleri, Meatless Days (U of Chicago P 1991)
  • Austin Clarke, Pigtails‘n Breadfruit: A Culinary Memoir (Ian Randel, Anniversary Edition or anyother edition, 2000);
  • Daphne Marlatt and Robert Minden, Steveston (Ronsdale 2001)
  • Isak Dineson (Karen Blixen), “Babette’s Feast” (short story)Optional: Andrea Stuart,
  • Sugar in the Blood: A Family’s Story of Slavery and Empire; (Vintage 2013)

FILMS:

  • Cheuk Kwan, Chinese Restaurants (2005 Tissa Films, documentary series). See cultureunplugged.com/storyteller/ckwan#/myFilms
  • Ang Lee, Eat Drink Man Woman (1994); UBC Library streaming video
  • Juzo Itami, Tampopo (1985); UBC Library streaming video
  • Gabriel Axel, Babette’s Feast (1987): Amazon Prime; DVD @ UBC

THEORY/HISTORICAL CONTEXTS:

Selected works of theory and critical readings are available as e-texts through the UBC Library.

We willusually consider one theoretical essay or chapter along with a primary text or film each week.

INSTRUCTOR: GOODING, RICHARD
3 credits
Term 1, Wednesdays 1500 - 1700

Cli-Fi, Dystopia, and the Posthuman World

This seminar will examine cli-fi, or climate fiction, a term coined in 2007 to identify speculative fiction thatrepresents the effects of climate change on humanity and the natural world. While much cli-fi is dystopian,what distinguishes it from other dystopian literature is a tendency to reflect collective efforts to adapt to changes in the environment (albeit an environment damaged by human activity) rather than attempts atimposing a political order on an unwilling or complacent population. We’ll examine how cli-fi imagines a post-apocalyptic, post-capitalist world that demands a reconsideration of the central tenets of humanismand proposes new relationships between humans and their environment. We’ll begin with PhilippeSquarzoni’s Climate Changed: A Personal Journey Through the Science (2012), a graphic memoir that outlines the scientific, political, and personal dimensions of the current climate crisis. We’ll follow that withJ.G. Ballard’s 1962 novel, The Drowned World, one of the most influential predecessors of modern cli-fi.Then we’ll turn our attention to contemporary cli-fi by Paolo Bacigalupi, Margaret Atwood, Barbara Kingsolver, and Catherynne M. Valente.

INSTRUCTOR: MCNEILLY, KEVIN
3 credits
Term 1, Fridays 1300 - 1500

Critical Studies in Improvisation

This seminar will introduce you to the emerging field of Critical Studies in Improvisation. You’ll read selected essays theorizing improvisation—literary, musical, theatrical, social—and its engagement with the present-tense cultural politics of community and participatory democracy. Course texts will include a novel, memoirs, poems, graphic media, films and music. How do media—tech and text, sound and image—help us to understand how we inhabit, and attend to, our unruly contemporary world? How do we beginto address the contingency and the risk that underscore the possibility of doing justice to marginalized,variously-abled, and under-represented voices? How does thinking critically about, and practicing, certainforms of living in the moment, of enmeshment, offer us new possibilities for mobilizing creative work or foropening up “insubordinate spaces”? The seminar will invite students not only to make academic-style presentations, but also to start to evolve their own co-creative, practiced-based research and to start totake creative risks in a supportive and encouraging environment.

INSTRUCTOR: BADIR, PATRICIA
3 credits
Term 2, Mondays 1000 - 1200

For All Time?: Shakespeare, the First Folio and the University of British Columbia

In 2021, UBC acquired a copy of Shakespeare’s First Folio. Published in 1623, the book is the first printing for nearly half of Shakespeare’s plays. Since there are no surviving manuscripts of any of Shakespeare’sworks, 18 plays, including Macbeth, Anthony and Cleopatra, The Tempest and Twelfth Night, are known tous today only because they were first published in the Folio. The recent UBC acquisition, along with the factthat 2023 marks the 400th anniversary of the Folio’s publication, provides the occasion for this course.

Our seminar will take the First Folio as its object of study. All of our encounters with this book will bemediated by an interrogation of its status as both a luxury commodity to be collected and cultural propertyto be protected. We will query where the book’s value comes from and question the assumption that the volume is imbued with the aura of Shakespeare himself. We will think about the book’s role in the settlingof North America – that is how it became what scholar Jyotsna Singh has described, as “a key signifier within colonial discourse.” We will also think about the ways in which the Folio, as an artifact from a worlddistant from our own, penned by a figure that continues to tower over our collective imagination, providesan occasion for UBC students and faculty, living and working on the unceded lands of the Coast Salish people, to rethink our understanding of literary and cultural history.

We will have limited access to the UBC copy at Rare Books and Special Collections, so we will take theseopportunities to explore the things that make it unique. We will look for markers of use and readership andwe will investigate the book’s previous owners. We will also look at how UBC is promoting this notable acquisition and we will consider the implications of our library’s policy around who is and is not given access to it.

In class, students will explore the story of the Folio’s printing (the gathering of the plays as well as how the book was physically printed) and explore the volume’s idiosyncrasies. Students will have the opportunity to learn about about the printing of dramatic and literary works in early modern period and they will explore the value of digitization projects in our own period.

Students will also spend some time with the Folio plays themselves in order to think about what they addto the Shakespearean canon. We will consider the resources the Folio provides for theatre practitioners and we will ponder why it is that actors are particularly drawn to this book.

Reading for this course will include 3-4 plays and a selection of secondary material. Evaluation will include a seminar presentation and a research project. Participation will be evaluated and in person attendance will be mandatory.

Students participating in this seminar may have the opportunity to present their research at an upcomingsymposium on the First Folio scheduled for the Fall of 2023.

INSTRUCTOR: POTTER, TIFFANY
3 credits
Term 2, Tuesdays 1000 - 1200

Writing Captivity, Indigeneity, and Gender in Eighteenth-Century North America

Gender, masculinity and femininity were ideas thought to be firmly understood in the colonizing discoursesof eighteenth-century North America; the idea of race, however, was in the relatively early stages of itstheorization, and in popular and literary terms, ideas of difference yielded wildly conflicting and vehementlycontested mis/understandings and accounts. One of the most intriguing sites for this contest was in thebestselling genre of the captivity narrative: a combination of adventure fiction, history, proto-ethnography, conduct book, and sermon that both demands replication of specific normative ideologies in early NorthAmerica, and reflects in sometimes surprising ways on the cultural values from “back home” in Europe. Ourseminar group will work together to examine literary, historical and theoretical texts to engage theimplications of the constructions of race and gender originating in and imported to the North Americancolonial context. We will interrogate how these constructions were used as a preliminary vocabulary for imagining and reporting upon the Indigenous nations and individuals encountered there. Captivity narratives were written in their time to be something between religiously edifying and exciting popularreading about exoticized groups and misunderstood conflicts and communities. NB: Colonial captivitynarratives are an important historical site for literary analysis, but they contain scenes of colonizingviolence, racism, and sexism that will be disturbing at times, even as we work to engage them critically and with awareness; please always exercise self-care when choosing your courses.

One seminar presentation, one short paper, one long paper. In-person attendance will be expected (touch wood).

INSTRUCTOR: HODGSON, ELIZABETH
3 credits
Term 2, Wednesdays 1400 - 1600

Artful Misogyny: Renaissance Sonnets, Modern Songs

Much love-poetry is beautifully creative, complex, and artful, while still pretty troubling in its actualpolitics. In this seminar we’ll unravel this tension by examining the gender-politics of love-songs and sonnets, some from the English Renaissance and some from contemporary song-writers. We’ll read male- and female-authored sonnets and sonnet-sequences from the 16th and 17th centuries, when thepetrarchan love-sonnet was a major literary and cultural trend, and consider which stories these poemsand poets are telling about masculine and feminine subjects, agency, and identities, includingintersectionally. We’ll pause briefly in the land of later amorous sonnets by women, especially Elizabeth Barrett Browning and Edna St. Vincent Millay, to see how these perspectives might have changed. Thenwe’ll switch to 20th century singer-songwriters and consider whether or not those stories have shifted.We’ll read (from the Renaissance): Philip Sidney, Thomas Wyatt, William Shakespeare, Mary Wroth, and John Donne. We’ll study (from the 20th century): Leonard Cohen and other singer-songwriters you mightbe interested in working on (bring your ideas; variety welcome!).

The majors seminar is a special opportunity to take charge of your own learning, and the course will beorganized to be as student-led as we can collectively make it: discussion as the norm; presentations,workshops, group projects, and lots of choice in your writing projects. I’ll create the frameworks and tools toenable us to teach each other and share our ideas-in-progress.

INSTRUCTOR: MOTA, MIGUEL
3 credits
Term 2, Thursday 1000 - 1200

British Drama Since 1956

Histories of post-WWII British drama often point to 1956 as a watershed year. The year marked the celebrated success of John Osborne’s Look Back in Anger, a play which, in its examination and criticismof a post-war, still class-ridden British society, recorded the frustration of the younger British generation (theso-called “angry young men”) with the traditional values of the “Establishment,” and signalled the beginningof a dramatic revival in Britain. The late 1950s initiated an explosion of dramatic activity that gave rise to themost exciting age of British drama since the Elizabethan and Jacobean periods. A growing interest in international theatre, increased government subsidies, the building of many regional repertory stages, andradical changes in the social structure of the nation all contributed to a revitalized theatre during the 1960sand 1970s. And though later cutbacks in public funding at times threatened their livelihood, Britishplaywrights have continued to address in vital and exciting ways many of the important issues facing Britishsociety today. In this course, we will survey a cross-section of British drama since 1956, ranging from the plays of the angry young men and women (Osborne; Shelagh Delaney) to the work of such notableplaywrights as Joe Orton, Harold Pinter, Tom Stoppard and Caryl Churchill to more recent attempts by playwrights such as Ayub Khan-Din, Mark Ravenhill, Sarah Kane, Martin McDonagh, and debbie tucker green to articulate new ways of exploring race, gender, and class as well as issues around theatricalrepresentation generally.

INSTRUCTOR: SEGAL, JUDY
3 credits
Term 1, Tuesdays 1400 - 1600

ONLINE | SYNCHRONOUS

How to be a rhetorician in a pandemic

A good place to begin rhetorical analysis is to ask, “Who is persuading whom of what, and what are themeans of persuasion?” Scholars interested in Rhetoric of Health and Medicine (RHM) pose that question inrelation to many situations and many topics. Their topics include, for example, mental illness, contestedillness, pain, neurodiversity, desire, health inequities, disability, health and race, health and gender, globalhealth, food, pharmaceutical marketing, and vaccination.

Our (post?)pandemic moment is of particular interest for the study of persuasion in health and medicine.Amid a global pandemic, we might have expected (as a response to that initial question concerning thewho, how, whom, and what of persuasion) that physicians and scientists would, with expertise and reason,persuade policy makers and the public to do all that is necessary to prevent or mitigate illness. Thingshave, in fact, turned out differently: speakers with a range of views have persuaded people in a fragmentedpublic space to do a variety of things, including some that do not prevent or mitigate illness at all.

In this course, we will be interested in persuasions pertaining to COVID-19, but we will importantly take up topics in RHM more widely. We will together specify, compare, and assess theoretical frameworks and methodologies within this growing field—and try to sort out the possibilities and the limits of rhetorical criticism and of persuasion itself.

INSTRUCTOR: ROUSE, ROBERT
3 credits
Term 1, Wednesday, 1000 - 1200

Writing the World in Medieval Romance

‘The earth is a form of writing, a geography of which we had forgotten that we ourselves are the authors’ (George Perecs).

The central question this course is this: in what ways did late-medieval England know the world? What werethe modes and nature of the geographical representations through which the English constructed,transmitted, and – in large part – invented, their view of the wider world that lay beyond their own personaland cultural orbits? What is the geographical imaginary of late medieval English culture, and how does it operate? As such we will examine both the modes of representation and in the content that suchrepresentations convey: the how and the what.

Late-medieval England (1350-1450) lies at the cusp of the modern world, an increasingly well- documentedperiod (in every sense of the term) that exists just before the arrival of modern cartography; before the map,before the rise to dominance of what Denis Wood has called ‘modern map culture’. The noted historian ofcartography, P. D. A. Harvey, observes that – rather than maps – ‘[i]n the Middle Ages, the normal way ofsetting out and recording topographical relationships was in writing, so in place of maps we have writtendescriptions: itineraries, urban surveys, field terriers, and so on’. The dominant mode of geographical knowledge in the medieval period was textual in nature, and it is this mode of textual ‘mapping’ that thiscourse examines.

To address these questions, this course examines the corpus of Middle English vernacular romance that was produced and consumed between the years 1350 and 1450. While this is not an exclusive focus (wewill stray to other genres and texts), these texts form a fecund textual landscape for the study of the late-medieval English geographical imaginary. Romance, as one of the most ‘popular’ of vernacular genres oflate medieval England, offers us insight into narratives that acted to reflect and produce the geographicalimaginary of a wide range of English audiences. A reading of the ways in which romance operates to writegeography provides access to a widely and diversely read body of texts that reflect, reinforce, and inculcate the representation of the medieval world of their late-medieval audience.

INSTRUCTOR: HO, JANICE
3 credits
Term 1, Mondays 1300 - 1500

Literature and the City

A promise of opportunity; a site of misery and alienation; an escape from the country; a space ofdeviance and crime—the city has historically alternately fascinated and repelled, a spatial locus thatmediates the dreams and fears saturating our cultural imaginaries. This course will focus on twentieth- andtwenty-first century literary and filmic representations of the city and the urban experience. We will take a broad global and temporal perspective: that is to say, we will read early twentieth-century modernist texts that sought to come to terms with the experiences of alienation and consumerism signified by the city;move on to consider late twentieth-century postmodern representations of city space as a site of futuristictechnology and simulacra; and finally, turn to postcolonial renditions of cities in what is known as the “global South”—in sites like Johannesburg, Mumbai, or Lagos—to think about how forms of global socioeconomic and racial inequities are spatially reproduced. Texts may include Joseph Conrad's TheSecret Agent; Jean Rhys's Good Morning, Midnight; J.G. Ballard's High Rise; Italo Calvino's Invisible Cities; Phaswane Mpe's Welcome to Our Hillbrow; Teju Cole's Open City; or Chris Abani's GraceLand.

INSTRUCTOR: NARDIZZI, VINCENT
3 credits
Term 2, Thursdays 1400 - 1600

plant | subject

The title of this seminar is taken from a scene in the late 1970s documentary film The Secret Life of Plants(35:43). In the scene, an experiment is being conducted in which scientists are trying to determine if theemotional activity of a male human subject (watching porn, no less) can be communicated to a plant, via awiring system that connects plant to subject. Employing an instrument that resembles a lie detector test or aseismograph, the scientists plot the reactions of the plant against those of the human subject. The musicsoars. We are to think that, yes, plants measurably react to human affect, disturbance, and interference.

This is exactly the travesty of science from which the recent field of plant signalling wishes to distance itself. We will read accounts of the new, experimental plant science. We’ll watch The Secret Life of Plants andexplore other texts in a range of media (short fiction, poetry, law, sound recordings, photography, indigenousstorytelling, and film) that have imagined plant sentience, emotion, and subjectivity. What do plants know,think, feel? What do we think that they know, think, feel? Why should we care about plants at all?

Students will write short responses to each week’s reading, deliver a seminar presentation, and submit afinal writing assignment.

INSTRUCTOR: SIRLUCK, KATHERINE
3 credits
Term 2, Fridays 1000 - 1200

The World Upside Down: The English Carnival Tradition and Its Legacy in Early ModernPopular Culture and Drama

This seminar course will seek to discover how the characteristic forms, attitudes and energies of popular festival culture in Renaissance England persist and transmute as they are passed down to the urbanculture and commercial theatres of Tudor and Stuart London. The mimus, the mystery play, the Feast ofFools, boundary-walking, mumming, wild men, harvest funerals, Robin Hood and other folk plays, Interludes, Saints’ days, the Lord of Misrule, Pancake Tuesday, bonfires, Maypoles, the Totentanz, jigs, ballads, mock-marriages, Morris dances and village processions all form a part of popular festivity inEngland. Religious and secular festivals are generally localized, seasonal, and communal; they are rootedin ritual and tradition and thus possess a folk-centred authority supported by custom and centuries-oldloyalties. Whether sacred or subversive, they are the property and often the voice of the common people.

Elizabethan and Jacobean drama teems with diverse variations of these folk rituals and festival practices,among them variations of the Battle between Carnival and Lent. Over and beyond their religious significance,Lenten elements in drama and festival culture are frequently associated with aristocratic values and with repressive authority imposed from above, hostile to popular dreams of liberty and social equality. In theStuart drama in particular, the monarchy, the aristocracy, and even the established church come under attackby means of reconfigured festive tropes. Theatrical representations of the festive world articulate plebiandissent and interrogate aristocratic prerogatives. They invoke carnal and comic energies to vie with the ascetic, the abstract, the repressive, and the solemn. Festival themes and forms protest the disappearance of traditional, communal life and the encroachment of the Age of Iron. However, despite a certain nostalgiaoccasionally attaching to them, these forms include within themselves modes of resistance and interrogationthat are crucial to our attempts to grasp the larger picture of Renaissance cultural and political history.

Primary Texts:

  • Mankynde
  • Christopher Marlowe, Doctor Faustus
  • William Shakespeare, Henry IV, Part 1; Measure for Measure; Hamlet
  • Ben Jonson, Bartholomew Fair
  • Thomas Middleton, Women Beware Women

Very brief excerpts (available online) from: Robin Hood and the Friar, Robin Hood and the Potter

Erasmus, from The Praise of Folly; John Skelton, from “The Tunning of Elinor Rumming”; François Rabelais, excerpts from Pantagruel and Gargantua; paintings by Breughel the Elder and others; variousverses, accounts and representations of carnival and festival life.

INSTRUCTOR: ZEITLIN, MICHAEL
3 credits
Term 2, Wednesdays 1400 - 1600

Some Dreamers of the Golden Dream

It has rightly been said that all great works of literature establish a genre or dissolve
one--that they are, in other words, special cases. ---Walter Benjamin, "On the Image in Proust" (1929)

In this seminar we'll read some "special cases" published in the four decades following the end of theSecond World War. Our main focus will be on how America is being imagined in these works, and(mis)remembered, suffered, dreamed, hallucinated, symbolically transformed, revealed. I take the seminar'stitle from an essay by Joan Didion in her collection Slouching Towards Bethlehem (1967). Additional primary readings will include J. D. Salinger, Nine Stories (1953); Sylvia Plath, The Bell Jar (1963); James Baldwin,The Fire Next Time (1963); Thomas Pynchon, The Crying of Lot 49 (1966); Don DeLillo, End Zone (1972); and Michael Herr, Dispatches (1977). We'll explore such scenes as the shadow of mass murder and atomic war in the Cold War era; the asylum; the militarized state; mass media and the image world; feminism; drugs, music, utopia, and alienation; racial violence and struggle; domestic terror and assassination; the American war in Vietnam as historical event and political unconscious. Two more recent works--Phil Klay's Redeployment (2014), about the American war in Iraq, and Ta- Nehisi Coates' Between the World and Me (2015), about the meaning and matter of black lives, will give us some valuable perspectives from which to look back upon "the immense panorama" (to steal T. S. Eliot's phrase) of post-WWII American history and culture.

Students will write short essays; do short informal readings (aloud); give seminar presentations; conduct class discussions; write a longer research paper. Our essential activity throughout this seminar will be to practice the art of interpretation and close reading.