Fall 2015 Course Schedule; Registration Opens March 4th 9am Eastern.

It appears that registration for both summer and fall 2015 semesters is going to open at the same day and time this year. That’s really odd but that’s what they’re telling me. So, that means that fall registration opens on March 4th, just like summer. As I wrote in the summer-schedule post, it usually opens at 9am Eastern. Those of you who know that you MUST enroll in this fall’s running of 500 because you’re nearing the end of your time in the program should be online at 9am on the 4th in order to secure a seat in that course, a course which all students must take (consult the Graduate Student Handbook which you can download in the left-hand menu or refer to the post on the degree audit to see what courses you need for the MA degree). We’re running six courses in the fall, and here they are:

  • ENGL 500 Theory and Practice of Literary Criticism.

Dr. David Kilpatrick

This course offers an introduction to major movements and figures of the theory of criticism. The question “what is literature?” is the primary concern of this course. Such an inquiry necessarily engages other, closely affiliated signifiers such as work/text, writing, reading, interpretation, and signification itself. After brief encounters with ancient antecedents and seminal moderns, influential contemporary approaches to the question concerning literature and its cultural significance are engaged. An assessment of the relative strengths and weaknesses of current trends in the practice of literary criticism, and their theoretical groundwork, is the ultimate objective of this course. This course is a core course and so is required of all students in the program. 3 credits.

  • ENGL 506 History of Poetic Forms

Dr. Alison Matika

This course investigates the relationship between meaning and form. We are concerned with developing the depth of understanding afforded by close reading, precise writing, and shared discussion, and we will develop a coherent overall context that problematizes the consideration of poetic forms through both creative and critical engagements using full class and small group reading and workshop. This course fulfills the Writing & Literary Forms group requirement, or can count as an elective. 3 credits.

  • ENGL 515 Working Women’s Literature in the US: 1865 to Present

Dr. Miriam Gogol

This online course will examine writings about working women from the post-Civil War era to the present. We will review key changes in the American work force, and social, economic, and racial factors since 1865, with attention to movements leading up to changes in the second half of the 19th century. We will use literature to help us deconstruct the definitions of “women,” “working,” and “The United States” up to the present writings about the millennials. We will inquire into the shifting definitions of the term “gender.” We will start with gender as a concept, a social construction reflecting differentials of power and opportunity. A goal of this course will be to deconstruct and reconstruct these and other pivotal terms. Breaking what the feminist writer Tillie Olsen calls the “habits of a lifetime” is not a trivial pursuit. One of the course’s goals is to accept contradictions and tensions, to be prepared for them, and know the history and benchmarks of major events in the lives of women. This course defaults to an elective but can be used to fulfill a Literature Group 2 requirement, upon request. 3 credits.


  • ENGL 522 Humanism in Renaissance Texts

Dr. David Fritz

This course will focus on humanism and the concepts arising from it in relation to the production and appreciation of literature during the Renaissance. The revival of interest in the arts and ideas of Greco-Roman antiquity and the dependence of Renaissance thought on classical themes will be among the issues discussed. This course fulfills a Literature Group 1 requirement or an elective. 3 credits.

  • ENGL 524 From Reason to Imagination

Dr. Boria Sax

This course looks at the tension between reason and imagination in representative literature from cultural movements such as neo-Classicism, Enlightenment and Romanticism.  This course fulfills a Literature Group 1 requirement or an elective. 3 credits.

  • ENGL 560 Modern Cryptography: Hemingway

Dr. Christopher Loots

This course follows Ernest Hemingway, through his writings, from his early days in Paris to his final moments in Ketchum, Idaho. Readings will include many of his major novels and short stories, and some non-fiction. The course will consider the interrelated effects of Hemingway’s self-engineered celebrity status—as the rugged bearded world traveler—which coincided precisely with the rise of modern media technology, and exceeded his literary fame even within his lifetime. The concept by which we’ll angle into our semester of study is that Hemingway’s writing, written in a then-groundbreaking style of seeming simplicity, might be considered a modernist code. Like any code, his method seeks to communicate hidden meanings which are not readily apparent upon casual read. Students will work to critically decipher Hemingway’s modern crytography so to interpret/intuit what meanings lurk in the writings of this giant of 20th-century American literature, arguably the most influential American writer of all time. This course fulfills a Literature Group 2 requirement or an elective. 3 credits.

As a final note, students who took the 514 Hemingway course a few years ago are not eligible to take this 560 Hemingway course.

Summer MA Courses and Registration Date/Time

This summer we have four graduate literature courses on the schedule. Three are summer standards and the fourth, Magical Realism, is a new offering being run by a professor who is an expert in Latino literature and Magical Realism. Registration for summer courses opens on March 4. The administration hasn’t sent out the specific time registration opens on this date but in the past it has been 9:00am Eastern. The four summer courses are:

  •  ENGL 509 Perspectives on the Essay

The course will study the essay as a distinct literary genre; its characteristics and types; its history; and its role in reflecting authorial consciousness. This course will examine the taxonomy of the essay in terms of its medium (verse or prose), its tone and level of formality, its organizational strategies, and its relationship to its audience and to particular modes of literary production (speech, manuscript, pamphlet, book, magazine, newspaper). It will trace the development of the essay from its origins to the modern era. 3 credits.

  • ENGL 510 Theory & Practice of Expository Writing

The course is encouraged for any student who is a teacher or who aspires to teach secondary school or community college English, or to adjunct at senior colleges. But the course is also encouraged for anyone who simply wants to focus in on exploring and developing his or her own critical, expository writing. The course will address the techniques of expository writing as reflected in academic discourse. Ideally, students will learn the general practices of critical writing, but focus their work in their individual fields of interest. These interests may include aesthetic approaches, feminist approaches, deconstructive approaches, research in culture, education, etc. The course will specifically address techniques of analytic organization, and will consider the pedagogy and andragogy of writing. 3 credits.

  • ENGL 517 Advanced Creative Writing

This course is intended for writers with some background or preparation in creative writing. “Some background” could simply be that you’ve worked in private on poems, essays, or stories; or that you’ve attended courses or workshops; or that you’ve been published. The idea is that each of you in the room will be continuing to develop whatever is your personal stage of creative writing prowess, rather than starting out from absolute zero. The course continues to develop each student’s creative writing ability through a close study of various writing styles and techniques, matched with assignments and workshops which encourage the students to further develop their own creative writing informed by such literary study. The emphasis of the course will shift depending on the expertise of the professor running it, and could emphasize or involve poetry, narrative, creative non-fiction, or other forms. 3 credits.

  • ENGL 560 Magical Realism

A fuller description of this course will be forthcoming. In brief, though, it will explore Latino literature and in particular literature of Magical Realism, and will be taught by Dr. Celia Reissig-Vasile, an expert in this field.