Graduate Courses, Spring 2008

Times and locations of class meetings are subject to change. Consult the UF Schedule of Courses for an explanation of the class period abbreviations.

Course no. Time(s) Course title Instructor
downAML 6017 R 3-5 American Literature to 1900 Leverenz
downAML 6017 W 6-8 Critical Geographies of Early American Studies Kim
downAML 6017 M 6-8 Labor & the 19th Century Smith
downCRW 6130 T 6-8 Graduate Fiction Workshop Leavitt
downCRW 6130 W E1-E3 Graduate Fiction Workshop Powell
downCRW 6331 T E1-E3 Graduate Poetry Workshop Hofmann
downCRW 6331 M E1-E3 Graduate Poetry Workshop Logan
bulletENC 6428 W 9-11 The Heuretics of Critical Expression Ulmer
bulletENG 6016 M 6-8 Psychoanalysis & Science Harpold
downENG 6077 T 6-8 Introductory Studies in Theory Leavey
downENG 6137 T 9-11
R E1-E3
What is Film Analysis? Ray
downENL 6216 W 9-11 Studies in Middle English: Chaucer & the “tre corone” of Italy Shoaf
bulletENL 6236 M 9-11 18th Century British Novel McCrea
downLIT 6357 W E1-E3
T E1-E3
Afro-European Literature and Visual Culture Reid
button linkLIT 6358 R 9-11 Renegotiating American Identity in the Sixties and Seventies Ongiri
bullet linkLIT 6856 T E1-E3 Theories of Africans: African Literature & Colonial Anthropology Amoko
bullet linkLIT 6856 T 6-8 Issues and Methods in Asian-American Studies Schueller
bullet linkLIT 6857 Modernism & Revolution6/25/08 Wegner
downLIT 6934 R 9-11 Sendak: Angels & Wild Things Cech

AML 6017

American Literature to 1900

David Leverenz

A survey of various late 19th and early 20th century American prose writers, with an intermittent emphasis on how race affects tensions between provincial and cosmopolitan orientations, and how those issues shape realistic and naturalistic narrative genres. Likely texts: Henry James’s Portrait of a Lady and/or The American, W.E.B. DuBois’s The Souls of Black Folk, William Dean Howells’s The Rise of Silas Lapham. Mark Twain’s Pudd’nhead Wilson, Frank Norris’s McTeague, Willa Cather’s O Pioneers!, James Weldon Johnson’s Autobiography of an Ex-Colored Man, Edith Wharton’s The House of Mirth and/or Summer, Stephen Crane’s The Monster, perhaps Booker T. Washington’s Up From Slavery and/or Nella Larsen’s Passing. My current research focuses on how white people used what I call “raced shaming” to keep black people in their place, and how that dynamic percolates into various literary texts from Adventures of Huckleberry Finn to Lolita. So I’d like to push at that issue a little, while also sampling a variety of other texts. Readings will depend in part on what you’ve already read.

Work required: an initial close-reading exercise (5%), a 4–6 pp. comparative close reading (25%), a brief prospectus for the research essay, and an 18–20 pp. research essay, plus notes (70%). No oral reports; instead, in every class I’ll ask each of you what passages or issues you’d like us to talk about that day. Grading will be based entirely on your writing, with one exception: missing more than one class without a valid excuse will lower borderline grades. If you have to miss a class, please let me know ahead of time (you can leave a message on my voice mail or by e-mail). I encourage prewrites (though not for the initial exercise), and I’ll be happy to comment on early drafts of the research essay. The last class session or two will probably focus on informal presentations of your research.

Note: I’ll be retiring soon, so it’s unlikely that I’d be available to direct your dissertation, though I’d be willing to consider being a reader, should our interests converge.

I try to make class sessions relaxed, so that all of us can try out ideas without feeling silly, weird, or stupid. It’s often the case that what seems obvious or off the wall to you is exactly what needs to be said, and I hope you say it. To invoke Emerson’s spirit, or Paul de Man’s: insights often begin in confusions and bafflements that haven’t quite been suppressed by anxious conformity to reigning critical fashions.

To find out more, come by my office at 4362 Turlington. My office hours this Fall are Tuesdays 3:30–5 p.m., Wednesdays 2–4 p.m. (committees willing), and by arrangement. Please feel free to call me at home (371-7461, before 9:30 p.m.) or at the office (392-6650 x283), or to e-mail me <>.


AML 6017

Critical Geographies of Early American Studies

Julie Kim

How does geography, whether local, national, or global, shape the production of literature and literary scholarship? In recent years, scholars in fields ranging from American studies to ecocriticism to novel studies have paid increasing attention both to the relationship between writer and environment and to the often ‘unconscious’ effects of geographical paradigms on academic decision-making (what books to include in a survey of ‘American’ versus ‘English’ literature, for instance). In this course, we will consider such issues in the context of early American studies, which has a long history of simultaneous dependence on and critical awareness of spatial and geographical categories, including those of the nation, the frontier, the contact zone, and the Atlantic Ocean. We will discuss the origins of each of these categories and think about how they have influenced the construction of an early American canon. By reading specific works of early American literature, we will also consider the limitations of each paradigm and think about what new modes of geographical thinking might be necessary to capture the messiness and complexity of textuality in the Americas and beyond.

Readings will most likely include Charles Brockden Brown’s Edgar Huntly, Lydia Maria Child’s Hobomok, Olaudah Equiano’s The Interesting Narrative of the Life of Olaudah Equiano, or Gustavus Vassa, the African, John Stedman’s Narrative of a Five Years’ Expedition Against the Revolted Negroes of Surinam, Thomas Gage’s English-American, and William Bartram’s Travels Through North and South Carolina, Georgia, East and West Florida, as well as excerpts from Frederick Jackson Turner’s The Frontier in American History, Mary Louise Pratt’s Imperial Eyes: Travel Writing and Transculturation, Paul Gilroy’s The Black Atlantic, Joseph Roach’s Cities of the Dead, and Franco Moretti’s Atlas of the European Novel, 1800–1900.


AML 6017

Labor and the 19th Century

Stephanie A. Smith

Although many Americans will spend most of their adult lives working, fictional representations of work – the conditions of employment, the kinds of labor Americans perform, which jobs are available to whom, what those jobs entail – are relatively rare. Or so it might seem. And yet, many novels written in the United States during the 19th century were, in fact, representations of, and investigations into, the conditions of labor. This course will be dedicated to rendering the multiple manifestations of "labor" – broadly conceived – visible in the 19th century American novel (mostly).

Engaging a variety of critical perspectives, the course will both explore and raise questions about the rapidly changing nature of work, the public sphere, politics and the economy, with a specific focus on antebellum conflicts that erupted into the Civil War, the post-bellum years of Reconstruction and the Gilded Age.

Reading List: Required
Additional required readings will be supplied.

Selected Reading List: Recommended
The following titles are recommended, for those who wish to read beyond the historical or theoretical scope of the course.


CRW 6130

Graduate Fiction Workshop

David Leavitt

This is an intensive fiction writing workshop for graduate students in the MFA program in Creative Writing. Reading varies, but will probably consist of short novels.

The workshop itself operates on the principle that prose fiction is made of words, punctuation marks, and white space. Craft is the name of the game, with the result that we spend more time talking about point of view and voice than we do about subject matter, “theme,” or “plot.” The class is rigorous. Members are expected to submit their work at least four times during the semester, and to emerge at the end better writers than they were at the beginning.

Although most of the writers who take this workshop focus on the short story, I will be making a concerted effort to create an atmosphere that will be equally fruitful for those working on novels or longer works.


CRW 6130

Graduate Fiction Workshop

Padget Powell

This course is open to MFA candidates in fiction only.

Your job is to write with force and surprise and to tender your efforts regularly and cleanly. My job is to induce criticism which will cure whatever ills are at hand without making the writer ill.

It is difficult to say what is wrong with a piece of fiction in a way that will be at once corrective and palatable to its author. A good professional editor may manage it with a piece not much flawed. I fear, after nearly twenty years trying, that it is rarely possible to do this in a direct way to a more troubled piece of writing for the forming writer then and there. I believe, though, that it is possible, in speaking ostensibly about this or that piece of writing by this or that writer, to speak prescriptively and salubriously toward the bettering of later writing, both that done by an author and by witnesses to his or her ordeal. A general sense of what constitutes good writing is supposed to obtain in the course of our piecemeal daily assaults upon the specific faults and merits of a particular piece of writing.

Objective of course clearly stated at outset: that you leave it writing better than when you entered it. That you put to paper things not said before that surprise us.


CRW 6331

Graduate Poetry Workshop

Michael Hofmann

The graduate poetry workshop, paired with close readings, narrowly focused. (The focus, though, yet to be determined: one possibility might be the collected poems of Hughes and Plath; another is Rainer Maria Rilke; a third Louis MacNeice.) The course is not least what you make it.


CRW 6331

Graduate Poetry Workshop

William Logan

Keep your mind off the poetry and on the pajamas and everything will be all right.

– Gregory Peck, Roman Holiday

Alexandre Dumas fils, the health-obsessed son of a famous father, . . . agonizes over half a sentence for a year, “and then his father arrives from Naples and says: ‘Get me a cutlet and I’ll write your play for you,’ writes the scenario, brings in a whore, borrows some money and goes off again.”

– New York Review of Books, 15 February 2007

Carmichael: It’s awfully hard to live poetry, ma’am.
Dove: Goodbye, Mr. Carmichael.

– Barbary Coast

“I have two acting styles. With and without a horse.”

– Robert Mitchum

“Dang! This is the worst doughnut I ever did eat!”
Country-and western singer Bill Monroe, eating his first bagel

– Burkhard Bilger, New Yorker, May 14, 2007

We will find a place for frivolity and fecklessness within the seriousness of verse and hope that within our studies cheerfulness will keep breaking in. The workshop will include readings in the poetry of the past century as well as the poetry of the age, and we will spend a few weeks on versification. Readings in contemporary and modern American, British, and Irish poetry, and meticulous discussion of your own delightful work. Also, practical dentistry and lock-picking.

Reading List:


ENC 6428

The Heuretics of Critical Expression

Greg Ulmer

An important part of the rationale for General Education requirements in the Humanities, and especially in English, is that these disciplines inculcate the style of thinking called “critical.” Critical thinking is native to the literate apparatus (alphabetic writing, school, the identity experience of selfhood). As codified in textbooks, critical thinking is structured by an opposition or tension between knowledge (science) and belief (ideology, faith, politics, ethics). The paradigm of such aporias is the confrontation between Galileo and the Church, a tension expressed today as “jihad vs mcworld,” or “the lexus and the olive tree”). The hypothesis to be explored in this seminar is that the new apparatus of electracy (digital media) makes it possible to upgrade critical thinking, to add a third dimension that brings to conflicts of knowledge and power a new framing, with the potential to transform deliberative rhetoric. This third (aesthetic) dimension of reasoning has been articulated by philosophers such as Spinoza (ethics), Kant (critique of judgment), Nietzsche (genealogy of morals), Foucault (care of the self). With this larger context in mind, we will focus our inquiry theoretically by means of one of the contemporary readings of Spinoza: either Deleuze’s consideration of “expression” in Spinoza, or Antonio Negri on “imagination.” Such authorities provide a rationale for extracting from certain arts practices the features of an updated critical creative thinking. The semester project involves the design and testing of a website whose purpose is the dissemination of our critical expressionism. The framing goals of the seminar are to introduce website authoring (CSS), and the disciplinary methods of grammatology and heuretics. No previous experience with WWW authoring is required, with the caveat that WWW authoring for beginners requires an extra commitment of time and energy. Readings will include (in generic terms): a contemporary theorist; an introduction to critical thinking; something on poetry; a study of a contemporary visual artist (Anselm Kiefer?).


ENG 6016

Psychoanalysis and Science

Terry Harpold

“While [psychoanalysis] was originally the name of a particular therapeutic method, it has now also become the name of a science – the science of unconscious mental processes.”

– Freud, An Autobiographical Study (1925)

The scientific status of psychoanalysis has been a concern of partisans and critics of the Freudian Field from its inception. Freudians have sought to prove their practice a science so as to guarantee its therapeutic relevance and institutional security. (Given the parlous state of psychoanalysis in most of the Anglophone world, they have not been very successful of late in this endeavor.) Lacanians, no less aspiring to relevance and security in other regards, have asserted that Freud’s discovery disrupted the foundations of modern science, revealing its foreclosure of a radical split (Spaltung) in the subject that is inadmissible to scientific reason. Critics of psychoanalysis have sought to discredit it by attacking its scientific claims (in the narrowest sense) and, more generally, by ignoring its philosophical propositions concerning the nature of mind and the limits of reason.

The very concept of a “science of unconscious mental processes” presents significant difficulties. The subject of such a science is by definition incommensurate with the undivided, self-transparent witness presupposed by modern scientific rationalism and empiricism. (And yet, Lacan insists, the psychoanalytic subject can only be the subject of science…) Unconscious determinisms, as Freud and Lacan showed, may be formalized, but their operations are of a different order than those of determinisms of the physical world, and must be addressed according to other measures of cause and effect. Even narrowly-divided opponents in debates about psychoanalysis’s scientific validity or character seem often to be talking about different versions of “science” – a difference, some critics have argued, that psychoanalysis anticipates.

This course will engage basic problems of scientific reason before and after Freud. If psychoanalysis is a science, what kind of science might it be? And if psychoanalysis troubles our understanding of what science is or should be, then what are the consequences of this for a scientific psychoanalysis?

Course readings will include primary texts by Freud and Lacan, texts in the history and philosophy of science (Aristotle, Godfrey-Smith, Kuhn, Popper), and investigations of psychoanalysis sympathetic and hostile to its scientific projects (Crews, Fink, Ginzburg, Glynos and Stavrakakis, Grünbaum, Holland, Milner, Roudinesco, Rudnytsky, Sokal and Bricmont, Verhaeghe). Graded requirements include a seminar presentation on one of the assigned readings, a prospectus of and annotated bibliography for a research paper, and the final version of the paper, of 15–20 pages in length.


ENG 6077

Introductory Studies in Theory

John Leavey

Graduate students have requested an introduction to theory course. Embedded in such a request are many theoretical assumptions (taxonomic, nominalist, formalist, methodological, etc.) and long histories (institutional, disciplinary, rhetorical) of what constitutes theory and introductions. Were one to construct an introduction to the precedents in theory, for example, one could examine the comments of Hegel on teaching and writing introductions to philosophy, particularly to speculative thinking. Or one could look at the various forms (genres) that this kind of study has taken over the past thirty years or so, if one wanted to limit the discussion to a more present situation.

In order to establish some boundaries for this type of seminar, we will look at what are the constraints for an “introductory” course in “theory.” We will examine through theoretical readings the topic of introductions and theory, in order to get some sort of handle on this thing called introduction to theory.

Course requirements



ENG 6137

What is Film Analysis?

Robert Ray

Just as academic film studies was gaining a foothold in American universities, the events of May 1968 shifted the focus from individual directors (auteurism) to political critique. This new, ideologically-charged model had Continental sources (structuralism, semiotics, psychoanalysis, and Marxism), but its most influential articulation came from the British journal Screen, and the dominant approach came to be known as “Screen theory.” This way of doing film analysis quickly eclipsed the auteurist close readings of the other major British film journal, Movie.

Screen theory was abstract and difficult, but its power lay in its generalizations: an essay like Laura Mulvey’s “Visual Pleasure and Narrative Cinema” purported to account for a whole class of Hollywood films. By contrast, Movie’s detailed studies of “director’s films” like Ophuls’s “Letter from an Unknown Woman” or Nicholas Ray’s “In a Lonely Place” seemed only to reprise Wittgenstein’s suggested epigram for his Philosophical Investigations, Kent’s line from King Lear: “I’ll teach you differences.”

Screen theory’s dominance has persisted for over thirty years. Recently, however, a different mode of film analysis has arisen, drawing on Movie and a different set of sources: Wittgenstein, Stanley Cavell, and Movie’s own V.F. Perkins. This seminar will look at this development. We will start by examining a few central Screen-theory essays in order to understand what the “new film analysis” is against. We will also read Wittgenstein and Cavell before turning to examples of the new mode, particularly in books and essays by Andrew Klevan. Because the seminar will look closely at what counts as useful film analysis, and because we will watch 1–2 movies a week, it will provide a useful preparation for those students interested in teaching ENG 2300 (Film Analysis).

Assignments: weekly reading quizzes, two oral reports, two medium-length (10-page) papers.

Readings will include some of the following:


ENL 6216

Studies in Middle English: Chaucer and the “tre corone” of Italy

R. Allen Shoaf

In this course students will read, in translation, all of Dante’s Comedy, substantial parts of Boccaccio’s Decameron, and a selection of Petrarch’s rime sparse as preparation for reading Chaucer’s Troilus and Criseyde, the first poem of its kind in English and, in effect, a transvaluation of classical “epic” through Chaucer’s encounter with the “tre corone.”

Books for the course will include the just completed translation of the Comedy by Jean and Robert Hollander, the Oxford World Classics translation of the Decameron by Guido Waldman, Robert Durling’s translation of Petrarch’s rime, and Barry Windeatt’s edition and modernization of Chaucer’s Troilus.

Assessments will be based on class participation and either two essays of 15 pages each or one essay, a research project, of 30 pages.


ENL 6236

18th Century British Novel

Brian McCrea

This course will investigate relationships between the old 18th Century canon Defoe, Fielding, Richardson and the new--Behn, Haywood, Burney, and Inchbald. Particular attention will be given to the question of how (or whether) the most traditional devices of narrative (the birth mystery, for one example) are gendered. We also will study how the most influential critics of the 1980s – Michael McKeon and Nancy Armstrong – and successful critics of the 1990s – Claudia Johnson, Jill Campbell – respond to Ian Watt’s classic, but dated The Rise of the Novel (1957).

Lectures will focus on the response of eighteenth-century writers to the "demographic crisis" (L. F. Stone’s term) that the English elite suffered from 1650 to 1740. We will analyze authors’ use of the birth mystery to rationalize the confusions created by the inability of patriarchs to provide legitimate male heirs. The course will open with Watt, then move on to subsequent critiques of him. Throughout the semester, we will consider the implications of Michael McKeons claim that the novel originates as part of an attempt to ameliorate both literary and social anxiety about quality. By studying eighteenth-century fictionalizations of kinship, we can see how deftly the writers of the period, even as they encourage subversive social attitudes, bring their readers back to the status quo, closing their stories by vindicating existing orders. We also will position ourselves to study differences (or lack thereof) in the versions of kinship offered by male and female authors.

Students will work toward a publishable essay. Besides participating in class discussions, students will comment upon a novel and a critical work they read on their own. (I will provide book lists for both.)



LIT 6357

Afro-European Literature and Visual Culture

Mark Reid

This graduate seminar introduces students to the literature and visual culture about Afro-Europeans and Black American expatriates in Western Europe. Weekly readings will cover literature, critical theory, philosophy, political essays, and films that speak to the socioeconomic and cultural integration of Africans (citizens and immigrants) from North and sub-Saharan Africa.



LIT 6358

Renegotiating American Identity in the Sixties and Seventies

Amy Ongiri

We will examine the ways in which the cultural, technological, and political movements of the sixties and seventies influenced the evolution of American identity in regard to changing notions of race, ethnicity, and inclusion. These movements include but are not limited to Psychedelic Culture, Black Power, the Asian American Movement, Fluxus, the Anti-War movement, Women’s Liberation, Gay Rights, the American Indian Movement, avant-garde music as characterized by Albert Ayler, John Cage and John Coltrane, the sexual revolution, and Third World Liberation movements. There will be a particular focus on film and media culture with attention given to the rise of New Hollywood characterized by films such as Raging Bull, Easy Rider, One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, Taxi Driver, and Bonnie and Clyde, the television revolution, and independent Black cinema as characterized by the work of Charles Burnett, Haile, Gerima, and Billy Woodberry. We will also examine the production of popular novel culture through the work of texts such as Chester Himes’ Cotton Comes to Harlem, Tom Wolfe’s The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test, Donald Goines’ Black Girl Lost, Iceberg Slim’s Pimp: The Story of My Life, and Jacqueline Susann’s The Valley of the Dolls as well as contemporary films that attempt to make an argument against the current cultural and political situation by reflecting on the period such as The Weather Underground (Bill Seigel, 2004), Chisholm ’72: Unbought and Unbossed (Shola Lynch, 2004), and Guerilla: The Taking of Patty Hearst (Robert Stone, 2004). Critical texts will include George Lipsitz’ Time Passages: Collective Memory and American Popular Culture, Robert L. Allen’s Black Awakening in Capitalist America, Jeremy Varon’s Bringing the War Home: The Weather Underground, The Red Army Faction and Revolutionary Violence in the Sixties and Seventies, Fred Moten’s In the Break: The Aesthetics of Black Radical Tradition and Harold Cruse’s Crisis of the Negro Intellectual among others.


LIT 6856

Theories of Africans: African Literature and Colonial Anthropology

Apollo Amoko

This course examines the vexed relationship between, on the one hand, the founding texts of colonial anthropology and, on the other hand, the founding texts of modern African literature. Colonial anthropology first emerged as mode of understanding the radical other, the African subject initially thought to be outside the realm of reason and rationality. Modern African literature first emerged as a mode of knowledge designed to liberate African subjects and worlds from the colonial library; this literature sought to positivize the negative image of Africa normalized in the colonial library. But, paradoxically, the founding texts of African literature depended, for their revisionary power, on the grammar and conceptual infrastructure of colonial social science and, in effect, normalized an anthropological episteme for Africa. As Simon Gikandi, perhaps following the example of V.Y. Mudimbe argues, “The founding texts of African literature claimed to have an African world as their referent but this was the African world which social science had produced for African writers […] These texts are more useful for telling us about their authors’ – and subjects’ – anxiety about colonial modernity than they would ever tell us about ‘traditional’ or ‘precolonial’ Igbo, Yoruba or Gikuyu worlds.” To what extent are Gikandi’s radical contentions justifiable? In what ways might Gikandi’s radically anti-identitarian reading of African literature be refuted? Does Christopher Miller’s provocative elaboration of an ethnic-based aesthetic/ethic for African literature – one heavily but critically dependent on the anthropological library – amount to an effective refutation of Gikandi and Mudimbe?


LIT 6856

Issues and Methods in Asian-American Studies

Malini Schueller

“Asian-American” is a highly contested, yet necessary category, born of racism, nationalism, and resistance. This course is an introduction to Asian-American literary and cultural production as well as to major critical debates generated by the institutionalization of Asian-American studies. Although the course includes works by Chinese, Japanese, Korean, South Asian, and Filipino Americans, the point is not simply to emphasize the cultural and national multiplicity of Asian-American writing. Rather, the readings are arranged according to major theoretical questions that recur in Asian American studies: cultural nationalism, racial-national authenticity, hybridity, model minorities, Orientalism, sites of exclusion, race and definitions of gender, the politics of location, and postcolonial identities.

I’m not sure exactly which texts I’ll use but we’ll probably read Maxine Hong Kingston’s The Woman Warrior, Julie Otsuka’s When the Emperor Was Divine, Theresa Hak Kyung Cha’s Dictee, Jhumpa Lahiri’s The Interpreter of Maladies, and Mine Okubo’s Citizen 13660. In addition we’ll work with documentaries such as Sa-I-Gu and Miss India, Georgia. We’ll engage with the works of race theorists such as Omi and Winant and Anne Anlin Cheng; postcolonialists such as Edward Said and Rey Chow; gender theorists like Judith Butler; Asia-Pacific theorists like Rob Wilson; as well as prominent Asian-American critics including Lisa Lowe, Gary Okihiro, Frank Chin, David Palumbo-Liu, and Vijay Prashad.

Requirements: One or two oral presentations; 8–10 response papers; long final paper


LIT 6857

Modernism and Revolution: Literature, Culture, and Thought in the 1920s

Phillip Wegner

In his landmark essay, “Modernity and Revolution,” Perry Anderson argues that one of the indispensable coordinates for the efflorescence of literary and cultural experimentation that we now know as modernism was “the imaginative proximity of social revolution.” In this course, we will take Anderson’s insight – along with the formulation of the modernist “fidelity” and the “passion for the real” that can be extracted from Alain Badiou’s books, Ethics and The Century – as our starting point for an investigation of a rich variety of modernist texts – manifestos, novels, poems, films, and philosophical treatises – that appear in the crucial decade of the 1920s. For the writers, artists, and intellectuals of this decade, a series of dramatic upheavals – the German revolutions of 1918–19, the Hungarian Revolution of 1919, the struggle for Irish independence (1916-22), and, most significantly of all, the Russian Revolution of 1917 – promised to sweep away the ossified institutions and practices of the old world. This lived possibility of social and cultural change was central to the work of all of these figures, enabling them both to break with the artistic and intellectual conventions that ruled their times and places and to imagine wholly new ways of being in the world. It is precisely this sense of hope and possibility that also perhaps accounts for why we experience these works as so alien today – as the noted art historian T.J. Clark writes, for us who live in a seemingly interminable posthistorical present, “the modernist past is a ruin, the logic of whose architecture we do not remotely grasp. . . This is a world, and a vision of history, more lost to us than Uxmal or Annaradapurah or Neuilly-en-Donjon.” However, as Walter Benjamin also famously claims, “In the ruins of great buildings the idea of the plan speaks more impressively than in lesser buildings, however well preserved they are.” Thus, we will explore these works with an eye not only to beginning to grasp something of their unique “architectures” and the radically other historical situation from which they emerge, but also toward the possibility of “repeating” (to borrow a concept from Slavoj Zizek) their achievements in our own time. Readings and viewings will include most of the following: Alain Badiou, Ethics: An Essay on the Understanding of Evil; Alain Badiou, The Century; Walter Benjamin, The Origin of German Tragic Drama; Andre Breton, Nadja; Luis Buñuel (d), An Andalusian Dog; Le Corbusier, Towards a New Architecture; Sergei M. Eisenstein, Film Form: Essays in Film Theory; Eisenstein (d), The Battleship Potemkin; Sigmund Freud, Beyond the Pleasure Principle; Lu Hsun, Call to Arms; James Joyce, Ulysses; Wyndham Lewis, Tarr; Alain L Locke, ed., The New Negro; Georg Lukács, History and Class Consciousness; Georg Lukács, In Defense of History and Class Consciousness; Saint-John Perse, Anabasis; Boris Pilnyak, The Naked Year; Cesar Vallejo, Trilce; Virginia Woolf, To the Lighthouse.


LIT 6934

Maurice Sendak: Angels and Wild Things

John Cech

An in-depth survey and study of the works (in print and other media) of one of the most important author/artists in modern children’s literature – including the rich historical sources of his works, his archetypal poetics, his revisioning of the form of the picture book, and his redefinition of the role of the artist creating works for young people in contemporary culture.