Undergraduate Courses, Spring 2014

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

Upper Division (3000–4000) Courses

Note: Only course descriptions are listed below. For a comprehensive summary of course numbers, sections, times and locations, titles, and instructors, see the following web page:

AML 3285

American Indian Literature

Susan Hegeman

This survey of literature (and some films) by American Indian/First Nations creators will address such basic questions as what is “literature,” and what are the specific problems and concerns associated with identifying a literary tradition associated with a diverse group of indigenous peoples? We will likely read works by Sherman Alexie, Louise Erdrich, Tomson Highway, D’arcy McNickle, N. Scott Momaday, and Leslie Marmon Silko. Students should anticipate 100+ pages of reading per week. Grades will be based upon formal papers and class participation.

toptop

AML 3607

African-American Literature II

Mark Reid

This course extends the definition of African American literature to include visual narratives by well-known artists as well as writers whose works have been overlooked for various reasons. Readings and film screenings will cover such playwrights as Amiri Baraka, Lorraine Hansberry, Lynn Nottage, Adrienne Kennedy; novelists as Paule Marshall, James McBride, Toni Morrison, John A. Williams; poets as Bob Kaufman, Audre Lorde, Pat Parker; and filmmakers as Spike Lee and Marlon Riggs.

Lectures and class discussions will explore how artists, using black vernacular and various other literary and visual strategies, dramatize contemporary social and psychological conflicts that occur when individuals and groups resist societal pressures to conform to hegemonic beliefs about race, sexuality, and gender. (To describe a hegemonic belief formation is not to say that a majority supports this belief system about race, sexuality, and gender, but to say that there appears to be no other alternative to this singular racialized-sexualized-gendered vision of society.)

toptop

AML 3673

Asian American Literature

Malini Schueller

The term Asian-American includes a diverse group of people including Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Vietnamese, Filipinos, and South Asians among others. However, the racial identities of these groups are not manifestations of a simple identity based on national origin. Rather, these identities are ever-changing and adaptive, influenced by historical and political events, legal and social categorization, and by the communities themselves. This course will grapple with the varied manifestations of Asian-American racial identities in literary and cultural texts including model minorities, racial performance, Orientalism, and blackness. We will examine constructions of race in the context of repressive contexts such as internment, as well as the intersections of race with gender and sexuality. The course will include both canonical and non-canonical works of Asian-American literature and will include a variety of genres including novels, memoirs, plays, short stories, graphic novels, and films.

Tentative texts might include Kingston’s The Woman Warrior, Chin’s Chickencoop Chinaman, Okubo’s Citizen 13660, Ng’s Bone, Mukherjee’s Jasmine, and Chung’s Forgotten Country. There will also be a coursepack with critical essays.

Requirements: pop quizzes, oral presentation, analytical papers or possibly a research project.

toptop

AML 4242

Modern American Poetry

Marsha Bryant

This course takes an in-depth look at poems by Robert Frost, Gertrude Stein, T.S. Eliot, Muriel Rukeyser, Langston Hughes, Wallace Stevens, Gwendolyn Brooks, Sylvia Plath and Billy Collins. Besides considering their interplay of traditional vs. innovative forms, we will focus on the poetry’s relationships to the natural world, domesticity, visual culture, and the city. In addition, we will consider poetry’s public roles in the United States. Course assignments are two papers, a panel presentation, a parody, reading quizzes, and engaged participation in discussion. Our work together will sharpen your skills in literary analysis, as well as provide strategies for writing more clearly and effectively. I look forward to discussing the poetry with you!

toptop

AML 4453

African American Women and Cultural Critique (cross-listed with AFA 4931/sec. 01AF)

Debra King

This course examines the subject positions of African American women within the social and political context of the United States, focusing foremost on contemporary representations of the captive female and the body. As an inquiry generated by feminist issues in literary scholarship, it addresses some of the assumptions with which feminist investigation is entailed by exploring the following questions. If some of contemporary feminist praxis and epistemology are grounded in notions of “freedom,” “individuality,” and the freedom of the body to “labor,” deeply implicated in the rise of modern capitalism, then what gaps must be brought to light in order for this discourse to achieve a broader articulation? Where are the points of conversion and foreclosure between Black and White feminism? What cultural configurations are (and might be) derived from a widened point-of-view regarding both the culture-work and the cultural apprenticeship of African American women in the contemporary period? What spaces do the bodies of black women occupy in the symbolic contract? To what degree do the texts under survey articulate a Black feminist discourse? In what ways do they fall short?

Format: The readings and teaching methods of this course are eclectic in pursuit of a variety of texts and experiences. The class sessions include lectures, discussions, and student reports. We will focus on six novels. As investigators and scholars, our inquiries will play in the spaces between practice and theory in order to address the commonalties, disruptions, gaps, absences, and silences that exist among the primary texts.

toptop

AML 4685

Race and Labor in Women’s Autobiographies (cross-listed with AFA 4931/sec. 12F7 and WST 4930/sec. 1137)

Kristin Allukian

This course focuses on the autobiographies of four nineteenth-century black women—Sojourner Truth, Eliza Potter, Harriet Wilson, and Elizabeth Keckley—and moves their labor to the center of our discussion. These former slaves and freeborn black women valorized their labor at a time when women’s work, and especially black women’s work, was increasingly devalued and disparaged. As we read these autobiographies, we will consider the following questions: how do these writers characterize the nature of their labor? How do they posit the relationship between themselves, their work, and national identity? In what ways does their wage labor double as cultural labor?

toptop

AML 4685

Women Writing About Race (cross-listed with AFA 4931/sec. 02E3)

Debra King

This course surveys women’s writing during the late 20th Century to the present, focusing on gendered Black and White race relations as presented in their literature and in American culture critiques. Students will trace, analyze and discuss how Black and White women talk about each other, coop and reject each other, or, simply, ignore each other as they negotiate gendered social, political, and personal challenges.

Goals: To discover how change and racial relations are developed both in our culture and in the way writers and their readers respond to those changes and situations. Students will discuss how Black and White women, as represented in literature, move through and solve challenging racial situations and bonding opportunities.

Format: The readings and teaching methods of this course are eclectic in pursuit of a variety of texts and experiences. The class sessions include lectures, discussions, and student reports. We will focus on novels, short stories, poetry and essays. As investigators and scholars, our inquiries will play in the spaces between practice, method, and theory in order to address the commonalties, disruptions, gaps, absences, and silences that exist among the primary texts.

toptop

AML 4685

Afro Latino Cultural Studies

Tace Hedrick

Although U.S. Latina/o studies is beginning to find a more secure foothold in universities, U.S. Afro-Latina/o studies is still relatively new. In this course, we will examine how Latinas/os of African descent born in or living in the United States negotiate a complex race, class, and gender identity through representations both in literature and (popular) culture. We will be looking as well to the roles African-heritage peoples play in countries like Mexico, Puerto Rico, Cuba, and the Dominican Republic, and how such roles affect their negotiations with identity in the United States.

toptop

CRW 3110

Advanced Seminar in Fiction Writing

Jill Ciment

Basically, the class will be run in the “traditional” workshop fashion. Writing exercises will be assigned at the beginning, but the primary emphasis is on self-generated work. The workshop should be a venue to test the waters, to try new things, to present first drafts as well as polished works, but only after the writer has struggled with it to the nth degree. The idea is for students to rigorously challenge themselves. Everyone not presenting work should take their jobs as critics and editors as seriously as they take their own writing.

Reading will be assigned.

Submitting Manuscripts for Upper-Division Creative Writing Courses

To qualify for departmental registration for upper-division creative writing (CRW) courses, you must submit a manuscript to the instructor of the course you wish to take. Each manuscript you submit for each course to which you apply must be accompanied by a Manuscript Submission Cover Sheet, which is available from the link below or in TUR 4012-A. It tells us what you wish to do, and it will help us put you in a course when space is tight. It will allow us to put you in the course you prefer when we can. Please fill it in closely and completely.

For CRW 3310 or CRW 4906, submit four poems; for CRW 3110 or CRW 4905, submit one short story or excerpt from longer work (up to 20 pp.).

The Manuscript Submission Cover Sheet indicates whether individual instructors require you to submit hard copies of your manuscripts to their mailboxes in Turlington 4301 or via email.

All submissions must be received by the October 18, 2013 deadline.

topManuscript Submission Guidelines & Cover Sheet

toptop

CRW 3110

Advanced Seminar in Fiction Writing

Jill Ciment

What is a short story? No genre has so consistently eluded definition. Stories can range from eighty pages (Thomas Mann’s “Death in Venice”) to a single sentence (Amy Hempel’s “Housewife”). The purpose of this seminar will be to explore the parameters of this seductive and evasive form, from the standpoint both of the practitioner and the reader.

The seminar will be built around the idea that writers learn by reading. Therefore you may find the reading load heavier than is typical for a fiction workshop. Each week you will be asked to read a selection of stories by an established writer, and to arrive in class prepared to discuss them cogently. This conversation will take up roughly a third of our allotted time; the other two-thirds will be devoted to discussion of your own work and occasional in-class exercises.

The requirement of the class, in terms of writing, is that you complete two stories, the first by midterm and the second by term’s end. (The second may be an outgrowth of the first.) It goes without saying that attendance is mandatory, and that failure to show up (along with failure to do the reading) will have an adverse effect on your final grade. Grading will be based on your informed participation in the seminar, the critical acuity you show when judging other students’ writing, and your willingness to work hard.

The reading many include stories by Anton Chekhov, Jorge Luis Borges, John Cheever, Flannery O’Connor, Grace Paley, Amy Hempel, Mary Robison, and Denis Johnson.

Final note: although flexibility is essential to any writing workshop, so is structure. The same can be said—and must be said—of the writing process.

Submitting Manuscripts for Upper-Division Creative Writing Courses

To qualify for departmental registration for upper-division creative writing (CRW) courses, you must submit a manuscript to the instructor of the course you wish to take. Each manuscript you submit for each course to which you apply must be accompanied by a Manuscript Submission Cover Sheet, which is available from the link below or in TUR 4012-A. It tells us what you wish to do, and it will help us put you in a course when space is tight. It will allow us to put you in the course you prefer when we can. Please fill it in closely and completely.

For CRW 3310 or CRW 4906, submit four poems; for CRW 3110 or CRW 4905, submit one short story or excerpt from longer work (up to 20 pp.).

The Manuscript Submission Cover Sheet indicates whether individual instructors require you to submit hard copies of your manuscripts to their mailboxes in Turlington 4301 or via email.

All submissions must be received by the October 18, 2013 deadline.

topManuscript Submission Guidelines & Cover Sheet

toptop

CRW 3310

Advanced Seminar in Poetry Writing

Sidney Wade

This Poetry Workshop will be held in the classroom in the Harn Museum. Each week, from 20–25 minutes will be spent in wandering the exhibits and studying the artworks on display. Other than that, normal workshop procedure will obtain. Each student will be required to lead one discussion of an assigned poem, and everyone will write one poem per week. In the beginning, poems will be written about artwork—later on in the semester, other options will be explored.

Submitting Manuscripts for Upper-Division Creative Writing Courses

To qualify for departmental registration for upper-division creative writing (CRW) courses, you must submit a manuscript to the instructor of the course you wish to take. Each manuscript you submit for each course to which you apply must be accompanied by a Manuscript Submission Cover Sheet, which is available from the link below or in TUR 4012-A. It tells us what you wish to do, and it will help us put you in a course when space is tight. It will allow us to put you in the course you prefer when we can. Please fill it in closely and completely.

For CRW 3310 or CRW 4906, submit four poems; for CRW 3110 or CRW 4905, submit one short story or excerpt from longer work (up to 20 pp.).

The Manuscript Submission Cover Sheet indicates whether individual instructors require you to submit hard copies of your manuscripts to their mailboxes in Turlington 4301 or via email.

All submissions must be received by the October 18, 2013 deadline.

linkManuscript Submission Guidelines & Cover Sheet

toptop

CRW 4905

Senior Advanced Fiction Workshop

David Leavitt

This advanced workshop is intended for students who are serious about writing fiction and (or) who are contemplating attending MFA programs in creative writing. It is assumed that most students will already have fiction projects underway or in mind, though this is not a requirement. The reading may include short novels by Irmgard Keun, Joseph Roth, Muriel Spark, Antonio Tabucchi, and Glenway Wescott.

Submitting Manuscripts for Upper-Division Creative Writing Courses

To qualify for departmental registration for upper-division creative writing (CRW) courses, you must submit a manuscript to the instructor of the course you wish to take. Each manuscript you submit for each course to which you apply must be accompanied by a Manuscript Submission Cover Sheet, which is available from the link below or in TUR 4012-A. It tells us what you wish to do, and it will help us put you in a course when space is tight. It will allow us to put you in the course you prefer when we can. Please fill it in closely and completely.

For CRW 3310 or CRW 4906, submit four poems; for CRW 3110 or CRW 4905, submit one short story or excerpt from longer work (up to 20 pp.).

The Manuscript Submission Cover Sheet indicates whether individual instructors require you to submit hard copies of your manuscripts to their mailboxes in Turlington 4301 or via email.

All submissions must be received by the October 18, 2013 deadline.

linkManuscript Submission Guidelines & Cover Sheet

toptop

CRW 4906

Senior Advanced Poetry Writing Workshop

Michael Hofmann

The best poets begin with ‘H.’ We’ll read three that start with ‘S’: James Schuyler, Frederick Seidel, and Charles Simic.

This is the senior undergraduate poetry workshop.

Submitting Manuscripts for Upper-Division Creative Writing Courses

To qualify for departmental registration for upper-division creative writing (CRW) courses, you must submit a manuscript to the instructor of the course you wish to take. Each manuscript you submit for each course to which you apply must be accompanied by a Manuscript Submission Cover Sheet, which is available from the link below or in TUR 4012-A. It tells us what you wish to do, and it will help us put you in a course when space is tight. It will allow us to put you in the course you prefer when we can. Please fill it in closely and completely.

For CRW 3310 or CRW 4906, submit four poems; for CRW 3110 or CRW 4905, submit one short story or excerpt from longer work (up to 20 pp.).

The Manuscript Submission Cover Sheet indicates whether individual instructors require you to submit hard copies of your manuscripts to their mailboxes in Turlington 4301 or via email.

All submissions must be received by the October 18, 2013 deadline.

linkManuscript Submission Guidelines & Cover Sheet

toptop

ENC 3310

Advanced Exposition

Raúl Sánchez

According to the UF catalog, this is “an advanced composition course in methods of exposition.” Toward this end, you will learn about methods such as defining, classifying, and comparing. Also, you will learn some basic concepts of prose style.

You will use your new knowledge of exposition and style to write essays. You will learn how to analyze and assess these essays carefully in order to become a better and more self-sufficient writer in the long run. You will learn to test and stretch yourself as a writer, moving beyond those forms of writing you have already mastered.

You will write 10 to 12 essays of varying lengths (one per week, roughly). You may write about almost anything you like.

The course is structured as follows:

For the first two weeks, we will meet as a group on Tuesdays and Thursdays to learn a set of terms with which to discuss some basic writing concepts.

For the remaining weeks, we will meet as a group on Tuesdays to learn terms with which to discuss prose style, and to discuss model essays by published writers. On Thursdays, I will meet with you individually for 15 minutes, at a regularly scheduled time. At these meetings, we will talk about how to revise your essays-in-progress, and we will look back on those you have completed.

toptop

ENG 3121

History of Film I

Barbara Mennel

The course provides an overview of the history of film from its origin to the coming of sound. The course is designed as the first part of a sequence on the history of film, but does not need to be taken in chronological order. The objective is to gain an overview of the historical development of early cinema, based on an understanding of key concepts in film studies and approaches to early cinema in film theory. Topics will include the beginning of film, the emergence of genres (western, horror, melodrama, comedy); the early social melodrama and the race film; montage and expressionism; and the aesthetics of a silent film language. The course relies on regular required weekly film screenings, readings, and the discussion of research methods and assignments as building blocks for a final research paper.

toptop

ENG 4015

Reading Freud Closely

Peter Rudnytsky

This course will undertake a close reading of a series of key texts by Freud from 1899 to 1901, above all, The Interpretation of Dreams, but also “Screen Memories,” On Dreams, and The Psychopathology of Everyday Life. We will study the development of Freud’s theoretical ideas but also his relationship with his sister-in-law, Minna Bernays, with whom he in all probability had a love affair in 1900. No previous background in Freud or psychoanalysis is required, but it would be desirable if students were interested in trying to understand “what makes people tick.” Course requirements include a midterm, final, and one five-page paper.

toptop

ENG 4130

Rethinking Third Cinema

Amy Ongiri

Description is not available at this time.

toptop

ENG 4133

Vampire Cinema (cross-listed with JST 4936/sec. 18D5 and JST 4905/sec. 18D3)

Dragan Kujundzic

Description is not available at this time.

toptop

ENG 4133

Introduction to Screenwriting

Heather Peterson

The class is an introduction to screenwriting, and a very thorough study of the screenplay’s many conventions and aspects. Put simply, you will learn the form in all its parts and develop (or refine) your abilities at writing different elements. Exercises include writing a montage, for instance, and writing a series of shots (as used in chase scenes, gunfights, or barroom brawls), working with memory, dreams, and flashbacks. In addition to class meetings, there will be an indie film shown each week which you will be required to attend, view, and critique in writing.

If you decide you seriously want to pursue the course, please send me a Letter of Interest—two or three pages about yourself, detailing your interest in film, your background in general, and in specific if you have writing experience here or elsewhere or have studied or worked in film. Earnestness, originality, curiosity, intellect, knowledge of films, writing experience, and enthusiasm for the subject are all points on. Please also include your full name, student ID #, and what class year you are, as upperclassmen may be given seats first since they might not have another chance to take the course.

No other writing sample is necessary, but please send your Letter of Interest to my email address (profrobison@gmail.com) in the next few weeks, and certainly by October 20 at the latest. There are many applicants for the fifteen seats, and we usually end up disappointing latecomers.

toptop

ENG 4134

Women and Film

Maureen Turim

This course will examine how women have been represented in film, how they have participated in film production and how they consume film images. We will look at several feminist approaches and the range of debates as to how to address these issues. Film form and aesthetics will be crucial to all our investigations, so knowledge of how films work will be beneficial.

Emphasis will be on such basic issues as viewer identification, the articulation of social values, and the function of cultural context, as currently formulated through various feminist and post-structuralist methodologies. We will explore how feminism intersects with psychoanalysis, ideology, deconstruction, and related approaches. We will examine the conjuncture of theoretical issues with an experience of specific films. We will look at the function of these films in the past, and in present reworkings of history.

WEBCT for the course will post the syllabus, assignments, and additional study material. Your assignments will be unloaded to WebCT and your paper to Turnitin on WebCT.

toptop

ENG 4135

Berlin to Hollywood: Film Emigration, 1920s–1950s (cross-listed with GET 3520/sec. 07FE)

Barbara Mennel

This course introduces students to the influence of German filmmakers on films made in the Hollywood studio system from the 1920s to the 1950s. We will study the films and the biographies of filmmakers who emigrated to Hollywood during the 1920s and the Nazi period. The class emphasizes the continuities and breaks between two different film periods and two sites of film production. Topics include expressionism, anti-Nazi films, film noir, the aesthetics of exile and migration, and B-horror film. Filmmakers include Fritz Lang, Ernst Lubitsch, Friedrich Wilhelm Murnau, Otto Preminger, Douglas Sirk, Josef von Sternberg, and Billy Wilder. There will be an emphasis on reading of theoretical material, film analysis, and how to conduct research for the final paper.

toptop

ENG 4135

French Cinema (cross-listed with FRT 3520/sec. 065H)

Sylvie Blum

The works of Jean Renoir will be the topic of the class, inclusive of his own writing and art work. We will cover his French and American periods, spanning the course of about six decades of French film history. New critical reexaminations of the auteur are included. All texts will be in English.

An e-reverse list will be available on top of required books.

toptop

ENG 4135

Modern Czech Cinema (cross-listed with EUS 3100/sec. 06HB)

Holly Raynard

When is film “propaganda,” and when does social experiment qualify as “art”? Does the Holocaust belong on the silver screen? How has Hollywood affected national cinemas? Is Prague a particularly apt location for reality genres?

Hailed as the “Hollywood of Europe,” Prague has been an internationally recognized hub for cinema since Machatý’s provocative Ecstasy (1933). This course will introduce students to the Czech cinematic tradition—from the establishment of the Barrandov Studios “Dream Factory” in the 1930s to the Czech New Wave to recent post-transition hits like Kolya (aka “Coca-Kolya”). We will analyze the cinematic language of storytelling and explore the uniquely Czech approaches to film narrative. We will also examine how Czech cinema has responded to foreign influences&mdashl;from the “Aryanization” of the Nazis to the “normalization” of the Soviet Union to the genre system and big budgets of Hollywood—and compare Czech trends to their Western counterparts. By the end of the course, students will understand the central socio-political and economic issues underlying Czech film culture from the 1930s to the present, be familiar with the major movements, genre and filmmakers in Czech cinema and think critically about various approaches to cinema.

Class requirements include: class participation, short online postings on cultural and cinematic terms, exam, paper.

toptop

ENG 4136

Experimental Video Production

Melissa Molloy

This course will help students develop their own independent video practice. We’ll explore how visual images are constructed in works from the historic and contemporary Avant-Garde to deepen our understanding of how conceptual strategy and aesthetics interact with topical materials and concerns. In addition, we’ll investigate methods contemporary video and film artists use to radically challenge conventional constructions of race, gender, family, and self. Students will employ various aspects of film theory and practice to create short experimental videos. Projects will include 1) in-camera; 2) autobiographical; 3) associational; 4) and extended videos.

We will be shooting video on digital video cameras and processing footage with desktop computers, primarily through Final Cut Pro on Mac G5s. The implication of such high-quality but low-cost desktop equipment, for the purposes of this course, is to make current technology available on an individualized basis for innovation and research. Much of the semester will be spent developing strategies for effectively using this equipment, and your participation will form a significant part of the course.

PLEASE NOTE: You must have completed at least one of the following UF courses before you can take this course: ENG 3115, ENG 3121, or ENG 3122. Since space in production courses is limited, I am asking prospective students to apply for the class in order to prioritize for those who are most qualified and most in need of the course at this time. Please contact me at mmolloy13@ufl.edu if you are interested in taking the course.

toptop

ENG 4844

Queer Theory

Justin Grant

This course introduces students to the major concerns, methodologies, and texts in queer theory, illuminating theoretical insights, assumptions, and implications about constructions of gender, sex, and sexuality. We will explore the multifaceted ways in which queer theories are employed, purposed, and reinvented. We will look backward, investigating vexed histories of gender and sexuality, while simultaneously looking forward toward possible queer futures and utopias. Students will be exposed to concepts of essentialism, social constructivism, heteronormativity, anti-relationality, performativity, and queer temporality, among others. Moreover, we will critically engage with contemporary LGBTQ issues, such as marriage equality, drag’s mainstream appeal, grindr and online cruising, HIV/AIDS, and interrogate the view—as Lady Gaga so emphatically claims—that “you were born this way.” This course provides students with the critical frameworks and tools needed for examining, questioning, and destabilizing conceptions of the self, identity, and politics. Theorists studied include Leo Bersani, Judith Butler, Eve Kosofsky Sedgwick, Roderick Ferguson, José Esteban Muñoz, Judith Halberstam, and many others.

toptop

ENG 4905

Independent Study

Faculty Member of Choice

An Independent Study course may be taken for 1 to 3 credit hours, but will only count toward the fulfillment of the 10-course requirement for the English major if a student registers for 3 credit hours.

This course is for advanced students who desire to supplement the regular courses by independent reading or research under the guidance of a member of the faculty. The student must find a faculty member who is willing to supervise the semester-long study, and together, the two create a project. The student must meet with the professor at designated times, agreed upon in advance, and complete all assignments in a timely manner.

toptop

ENG 4936

Honors Seminar: Un/Reading Disaster

Richard Burt

In this course, we will think of disaster as a wound that won’t heal or close (no narrative closure) as opposed to a one time event (with a linear narrative of cause and effect attached). In addition, we will consider works of literature concerned with wounds and about reading as a wound. After reading several essays about “Un/Reading,” we will begin with Christopher Marlowe’s Doctor Faustus and Thomas Malory’s Morte d’Arthur in preparation for Thomas Mann’s Docktor Faustus and Richard Wagner’s Parsifal (the class will produce its own annotated, critical editions of each work). Un/Reading disaster is a kind of bleeding of the text in which you never see the blood (you can’t holy commune with it [grail] or suck it [Dracula]). The anti-Semitic stereotype of the wandering Jew keeps recirculating in Wagner as the “ewige Jude” (“eternal Jew,” but “ewige” is translated in English as “wandering”)—Wotan, Parsifal, and the flying Dutchman being three obvious wanderers. We will end by returning to the disaster as a problem of signing, of reading the stars, for Maurice Blanchot and Theodor Adorno in relation to the holocaust, the Nazi exhibition on “Degenerate Music,” and the uncanny parallels between the anti-semitic notion of the wandering Jew to the Jewish diaspora from Europe to Los Angeles, the temporary destination of many European Jewish emigre composers when the Nazis came to power until the McCarthy witch-hunts.

toptop

ENG 4936

Honors Seminar: Thoreau and Everyday Life

Robert Ray

“I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately,” Thoreau wrote, in one of American culture’s most famous declarations, “to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived.” The contemporary American philosopher Stanley Cavell has elaborated on this position, suggesting that film and philosophy “are both preoccupied. . . with the everyday. . . . with ways in which we miss our lives.”

Thoreau’s solution to the problem of missing our lives turns on an awakened attentiveness to the world around us. In this seminar, we will look at various strategies for summoning that attentiveness, starting with Walden, which will occupy us for a month. (Thoreau spent 28 months in the woods.) We will also look at other works (Cavell’s essays, J.L. Carr’s novel A Month in the Country, Frank O’Hara’s Lunch Poems, Wallace Stevens’s poems, Wittgenstein’s Blue Book, and one or two Classic Hollywood comedies).

Assignments will include (1) weekly short reading quizzes, (2) one or two oral presentations, and (3) two 8-page papers.

toptop

ENG 4940

Internship

Undergraduate Coordinator

The English Department at the University of Florida offers three* credit hours of internship to its majors who provide the following to the Undergraduate Coordinator for approval:

Once the Undergraduate Coordinator has approved the internship requested by the student, the department will register the student for the internship credits.

Upon completion of the internship:

*For two credit hours, the student would need to work 8 hours per week in a Fall, Spring, or Summer C semester; and 16 hours per week for Summer A or B.

*For one credit hour, the student would need to work 4 hours per week in a Fall, Spring, or Summer C semester; and 8 hours per week for Summer A or B.

Please note the following limitations on the English Internship:

toptop

ENG 4953

Department Seminar: Joyce and Cultural Studies

R. Brandon Kershner

The course will be an introduction both to James Joyce and to the broad field of cultural studies, using Joyce’s fiction as examples of literary texts with particularly rich cultural resonance—both representationally and as artifacts. We will read Dubliners, A Portrait of the Artist, and Ulysses. Our emphases will include the areas of

Although the course obviously will engage with theory, the stress will be upon specific implications of the literary texts rather than upon the theory in and for itself. As an aid in reading Ulysses, we will use Blamires’s guide to that novel entitled The New Bloomsday Book. I will bring in copies of newspapers and advertisements of the time as well as some examples of the popular reading to which Joyce alludes, show slides of Eugen Sandow the bodybuilder and memorial photography of children, and discuss other examples of material culture from turn-of-the-century Ireland.

Texts: The Viking Critical edition of Dubliners (ed. Scholes and Litz) and the Bedford Books edition of A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man (ed. Kershner); Hans Walter Gabler’s edition of Ulysses and Harry Blamires’s The New Bloomsday Book; I will also be distributing a good deal of material as handouts during the course.

Requirements: (1, 2) Two papers incorporating literary-critical research, the first 8–10 pages long, the second 12-18 pages. (3) A final exam, including objective and essay sections. (4) About three or four unannounced quizzes—very simple ones—to make sure we’re all keeping up with the reading. (5) A single oral presentation in class of a book from a list I will provide. These five requirements will weigh roughly the same in determining 85% of your grade; an additional 15% will be determined by class participation.

toptop

ENG 4970

Honors Thesis Project

Faculty Members (2) of Choice

Students must have have completed at least one semester of ENG 4936, Honors Seminar. Open to English Honors students.

The student must select two faculty members: one to direct the reading, research, and writing of a thesis on a topic of the student’s and director’s chosing, and another as the second reader. An abstract (100 to 200 words) must be delivered to the CLAS Academic Advising Center on Fletcher Road at least 10 days before graduation.

toptop

ENL 3122

English Novel: Nineteenth Century

Pamela Gilbert

This course samples key developments in the British novel through the nineteenth century. We will examine the novels within three contexts: historical, literary-historical, and critical. If you have not had ENL 2022, you should plan to familiarize yourself with the period: the Norton Anthology introduction to the period is a good place to start. Gilmour’s and Houghton’s books are also very useful and are on reserve in the library.

The Victorian period was the great age of the novel’s emergence as a dominant popular form within a newly extensive literary marketplace, and Victorian novelists were consummate entertainers driven to sell widely and well. They were also preoccupied with the condition of their own culture; to paraphrase Richard Altick, rarely is the Present so much present in literature as it is in the novel of this period. Victorian novelists considered it their duty and pleasure to criticize, praise and generally comment upon current issues, and they developed new forms and genres to accommodate their purposes. These issues represent the formative phases of social concerns which we have inherited and which still define us: for example, the role of mass media, the ethics of capitalism, gender roles, the responsibilities of liberal government, the welfare state, pollution, the role of nation in the global community, etc. We will read a range of representative genres and consider them not only in the light of the emergence of the novel as a dominant form, but as documents of a culture’s attempts to represent and work out these issues of contemporary importance—aesthetically and ethically—and consider the ways in which Victorian ideas resonate for us today.

This course provides upper-division credit in the major, and will be taught with that in mind; therefore, students will be expected to know how to do research in the field and to attempt the application of critical frameworks. Due to the nature of the material, there is a considerable amount of reading. Carefully consider your reading speed and the expectations of the other courses you are taking before committing to this course. The course requirements include a short paper, a long paper, reading quizzes and a creative project.

toptop

ENL 3154

Twentieth-Century British Poetry

Marsha Bryant

This course provides in-depth analysis of W.B. Yeats, Wilfred Owen, W.H. Auden, Stevie Smith, Philip Larkin, Ted Hughes, Seamus Heaney, Linton Kwesi Johnson (LKJ), and current Poet Laureate Carol Ann Duffy. We will examine their poems, lives, and cultural contexts. As we move through the semester, gender, family, and nation become increasingly dislocated as traditional concepts of “poetry” and “British” continue to shift. Course assignments are two papers, a panel presentation, a parody, reading quizzes, and engaged participation in discussion. Our work together will sharpen your skills in literary analysis, as well as provide strategies for writing more clearly and effectively. I look forward to discussing the poetry with you!

toptop

ENL 3241

The Romantic Period

Donald Ault

This course will focus on Blake, Coleridge, Byron, and Shelley, with some readings in Wordsworth, Keats, and selected literary theoretical texts. The work in the course will emphasize close reading of texts that present interpretive difficulties at the level of their material production (including variant editions, revisions, different versions, spatial layout of syntax, etc.), taking into account the tendency of Romantic texts to resist being “finished.” We will read these texts against the grain in order to explore interferences within their ideological and textual fields.

toptop

ENL 3251

Victorian Literature

Chris Snodgrass

This course will attempt to define the world-views, beliefs, doubts, anxieties, and paradoxes of the Victorian Age, one of the most interesting and influential periods in Western history, through a survey of the poetry, fiction, drama, pictures, and critical theory of a few representative artists. We will be reading no novels—novels are dealt with in another course (ENL 3122). Among the cultural issues studied will be religious and scientific faith, gender identities, the “Woman Question,” and fin-de-siècle Decadence. We will be reading works by Tennyson, Hopkins, D. G. Rossetti, Swinburne, Pinero, Beardsley, Wilde, several avant-garde women writers, among others, including Victorian painters. Your grade will be computed as follows: 60%—average score on weekly short “Insights” papers (half interactive); 10%—class participation and general preparedness; and 30%—a comprehensive final exam.

toptop

ENL 4221

17th-Century Poetry

Peter Rudnytsky

This course will seek to enhance students’ skills of close reading by surveying English poetry from Donne to Dryden, with a focus on both the “metaphysical’ and the “cavalier” traditions. The other poets to be read include Herbert, Vaughn, Crashaw, Jonson, Herrick, Milton, Marvell, Lovelace, Waller, and Rochester. Course requirements include a midterm, final, and one five-page term paper.

toptop

ENL 4311

Chaucer (cross-listed with MEM 4931/sec. 0196)

R. Allen Shoaf

This course will cover all of Troilus and Criseyde, some of the shorter poems, and about half of the Canterbury Tales. Two examinations and one essay will be required, in addition to quizzes that monitor the reading, some of which will be in Middle English. There is no final examination.

toptop

ENL 4333

Shakespeare: Doing It

Sidney Homan

We “study” Shakespeare by staging scenes from his plays. Each student works with an acting partner—the couple is responsible for performing 3–4 shortened versions of scenes, then working with me as their director.

In effect, we approach Shakespeare’s plays as actors and directors, charged with building a character, enacting that character through delivery, gesture, stage movement, subtext.

We will look at Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Twelfth Night, Much Ado about Nothing, The Taming of the Shrew, Hamlet, Macbeth, Othello, and also Tom’s Stoppard’s reworking of Hamlet in his Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead.

Students are graded equally on their scene work and a short paper in which they assess their rehearsal experience with the scene, from the perspective of both the character and their decisions as an actor.

Sidney Homan is Professor of English at the University of Florida, the author of some eleven books on Shakespeare and the modern playwrights. He also works as an actor and director in professional and university theatres.

toptop

LIT 3003

Forms of Narrative

Donald Ault

This course will focus on the transformation of plots and characters from one medium to another—especially Disney characters migrating from animation to comic strips and comic books and back again, E.C Segar’s Popeye from comic strips to Fleischer animation and Altman’s live action, and Hammett’s Sam Spade in the three film versions of The Maltese Falcon, the 1948 comic book, and a 1970s photo-film book. Text requirement: course pack from Xerographic Copy Center, 927 NW 13th St. Note: Some texts studied in this course may vary from those given in this description.

toptop

LIT 3043

Modern Drama: Learning by Doing

Sid Homan

The assumption in all my theatre courses is that the text of a play is not just what is written on the page but that text in performance, delivered by actors before an audience. This means the play’s text also includes gestures, movement, blocking (the stage picture), and sub-text (what the character is saying inwardly, beneath the lines delivered onstage, as well as the “history” for that character invented by the actor). In the theatre, we would further supplement this text with lighting, sound, set, costumes, props, and make-up. To be sure, one can approach a play in a thousand ways – as literature, as a repository for the thinking of an age, as the springboard for political or cultural issues. But, since I work both on campus and in the theatre as an actor and director, and since the theatre itself is a unique medium with its own aesthetic principles, I approach the plays, with my students, and as a fellow “student,” as something meant to be performed by an actor and ratified by an audience. In the class each student will have a scene partner with whom he or she stages several scenes each semester. Once performed, the class and I, as co-directors, “work” that scene with the two actors, trying out options, rehearsing it. The emphasis, therefore, is on learning by doing, and I judge student work by intent, what goes into the performance – not by finesse. If there is finesse, that is considered a bonus. Each actor also writes a short paper assessing his or her experience during rehearsal for a scene. Performances and the scene papers count equally.

In this course, we will thus consider Samuel Beckett’s Waiting for Godot, Embers, All That Fall, Play, Eh Joe, Not I, and Come and Go; Harold Pinter’s The Lover, Old Times, Betrayal, and No Man’s Land, Sam Shepard’s True West, Curse of the Starving Class, and Buried Child; and Tom Stoppard’s Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead.

A word of comfort: whether you have acted before or not, experience in the theatre is not a factor in the class.  We use acting as a way of studying the text.  Have no fears on this issue!

If you have any questions or comments, please e-mail Professor Homan at shakes@ufl.edu.

toptop

LIT 3374

Bible as Literature

Anastasia Ulanowicz

According to conventional wisdom, the Judeo-Christian Bible is a book. Indeed, in certain religious communities, it is regarded as The Book. However, as both theologians and secular literary critics have observed, the Bible is not so much a singular book as it is a collection of many different literary forms composed during various historical periods and only later anthologized by representatives of dominant socio-religious communities. Moreover, the Bible can be defined as much by what it excludes as by what it includes: indeed, different communities read different editions of the Bible .

The purpose of this class, then, is to analyze the disparate forms and genres contained within the Judeo-Christian biblical canon (New Oxford Annotated edition, with apocrypha). We will examine such different literary forms as origin myths (Genesis), romance/quest narrative (Exodus), lyrical poetry (the Psalms), erotic poetry (Song of Songs/the Song of Solomon), prophecy (Isaiah), fairy tales (Job), gospel tales (the synoptic gospels and the Book of John), epistolary writing (Paul), and apocalyptic literature (Daniel and the Revelations of St. John the Divine). We will also study the influence of these forms on secular works of literature (e.g., those by Kafka, Kierkegaard, Melville, and Milton). In doing so, we will consider how the formation of the Biblical canon influenced the formation of the secular literary canon. N.B. This is a literature course—not a course on religion or theology. Previous familiarity with the Bible is not a prerequisite.

toptop

LIT 3383

African Women Writers (cross-listed with SSW 4713/section 005G)

Rose Lugano

In this class we will explore African women writers and critics, looking at their theoretical priorities and cultural positions. This course is designed to provide students with both a specific and a general view of the status, achievements and experiences of African women in fiction. Using different genres (novels, poems and plays) we will endeavor to understand how women’s literary expression has been shaped by history, culture, and their personal experiences, as well as see how they are addressing issues of gender in their respective societies.

Our discussions will focus on issues of identity, oppression, resistance, exile, language, translation and colonialism, using as points of entry a diverse set of texts. The framework for classroom discussion will revolve around two central issues:

toptop

LIT 3400

Internet Literature

Gregory Ulmer

The general topic for this seminar is the relationship of technology to literature. Specifically, we will focus on what happens to literary forms and their study in the medium of the World Wide Web. Our interest in part is in the migration of print forms and modes onto the Internet, and also in the emergence of new forms of creativity native to the Internet. Lev Manovich, in The Language of New Media, observes that the cut-and-paste tools of hypermedia authoring embody the aesthetics created by the experimental arts of 1920s modernism. This observation provides a point of departure for our own experiments, investigating the relationship between experimental poetics, the digital medium, and Internet creativity. The primary goal of the course is to adapt the practices of new media creativity to the design of a mode of study native to the Internet. The course is taught in a CIRCA classroom. The course project is created in the blog medium, supplemented by basic photoshop. We will experiment with the design of a new mode of study that takes advantage of the resources of hypermedia and the aesthetics of popular culture and surrealism. The semester project is to design and test the “learning screen,” that does for Internet culture what the “research paper” did for print education. Previous experience with Web authoring (blog, photoshop) is helpful but not required. However, beginners should expect to spend some extra time learning to use the authoring environment.

Required readings (tentative):

Italo Calvino, Six Memos for the Next Millenium
Linda Seger, The Art of Adaptation
Sean Hall (Introduction to semiotics)
Electronic Literature Collection

toptop

LIT 4183

Empire and Gender

Malini Schueller

Taking imperialism as central to the construction of the United States’ national imaginary, this course will raise a number of questions about the intersection of empire and gender. How is the language of empire gendered? How does gender structure metaphors such as the frontier? How are representations of colonized spaces and racial others invested with discourses of gender? How does the captivity narrative persist in the narrative of contemporary imperialism? How do imperialism and war rhetoric build up masculinity? We will focus on specific sites of U.S. imperialism such as Hawai’i, the Philippines, Vietnam and Iraq, and examine the literary and cultural texts that emerge from those sites. Although the specific focus of the course is on US imperialism, the discussions should help us in thinking broadly about the ways in which languages of empire and gender intersect.

Course Requirements: Pop quizzes, oral presentation, two analytical papers or possibly a research project.

toptop

LIT 4192

Migration, Money, and the Making of Modern Caribbean Literature

Leah Rosenberg

This interdisciplinary introduction to digital humanities and the use of historical research in literary analysis examines two often overlooked labor migrations that profoundly influenced the shape and timing of the emergence of modern Caribbean literary culture: The immigration of Chinese and Indian indentured laborers into the French, Dutch, and British West Indies between 1838 and 1917, and the emigration and return of the Afro-Caribbean workers who went to Panama to build the canal between 1904–1914. Both groups worked under difficult conditions for exploitative wages, yet both managed to accumulate savings that bankrolled their entry into the educated middle class. Moreover, the new cultural forms and political aspirations they introduced to the region profoundly shaped Caribbean literary production and anti-colonial political movements. In this course, students will learn how to use archival material related to these migrations, including historical photographs, oral histories, and newspapers to enrich their understanding of Caribbean literature about these migrations, including the work of Jamaica Kincaid, David Dabydeen, Claude McKay, H.G.de Lisser, Maryse Condé, V.S.Naipaul, Ramabai Espinet.

The course introduces students to the digital humanities and digital archiving. It makes extensive use of the Digital Library of the Caribbean (www.dloc.com), an open-access digital archive, whose technical hub is at UF. Students will have an opportunity to add their annotations to the finding aids in the dLOC collection and produce a digital humanities project as a final project.

toptop

LIT 4194

Fictions of Africa

Apollo Amoko

This course will focus on canonical texts of modern African drama. High canonical prose fiction has long dominated the field of African literary studies. In what ways might placing drama center stage alter the critical and theoretical terrain of African letters? In a sense, the high profile enjoyed by the high cultural African novel merely reflects the overall (but perhaps temporary) decline of poetry and drama in contemporary literary studies. But it provides for specific distortions in the African context where the high canonical novel is restricted in its production and circulation to a small intellectual class, what Kwame Anthony Appiah has contemptuously termed the “comprador intelligentsia.” According to Appiah, high cultural African art inhabits and reflects the world of “a relatively small, Western style, Western-trained group of writers and thinkers, who mediate the trade in cultural commodities of world capitalism at the periphery.” The preoccupations of that rarified academic universe are fundamentally at odds with the practices and politics of everyday life in contemporary Africa. Appiah’s critique seems valid with regard to the high canonical novel but it may not fully account for the instrumental role that performance plays in the dramatic aesthetic. As Simon Gikandi contends, plays can perform an important mediating function in contemporary African culture: “Conceived as an instrument for change, drama, more than the novel, could be formalized to overcome the historical and social gap between intellectuals and workers, between popular culture and elite forms of artistic expression.” The course will turn on a critical engagement with Gikandi’s provocative contentions against the backdrop of Appiah’s sweeping critique. We will likely focus on such landmarks in the history of African theater as the First and Second World Black and African Festival of Arts and Culture (the Festac Festivals held in Algiers in 1969 and Lagos in 1977), the various national theater movements established in postcolonial Africa with particular emphasis on the Kenya National Theatre controversy of the 1970s, the Kamiriithu Theatre Experiment, the Popular Theater Movement, the Theatre for Development Movement and the anti-apartheid drama of the Market Theatre (and elsewhere) in South Africa. Authors studied will likely include such playwrights as Wole Soyinka, Athol Fugard, Ngugi wa Thiong’o, Ama Ata Aidoo and Femi Osofison.

toptop

LIT 4333

Literature for Adolescents

Anastasia Ulanowicz

In this course, we will account for major themes and trends in American “young adult” (or “YA”) literature. As we analyze each of the assigned texts, we will pay particularly close attention to the ways in which works of YA literature draw on culturally-constructed notions of adolescence to shape the adolescent characters within them—and how, in turn, they seek to draw in and interpellate the adolescents who read them. Additionally, we will address issues of class, race, gender, sexuality, national identity, and consumerism implicit within the assigned texts.

toptop

LIT 4930

Hamlet vs. Lear

Richard Burt

In this course, we will read very closely two tragedies of Shakespeare, Hamlet and King Lear. In addition to examining problems of editing both plays, we will also watch a number of film adaptations. Requirements: Weekly responses to the readings and films; three short papers (1k words each).

toptop

LIT 4930

Literature and Medicine

Pamela Gilbert

This course will explore the relationship of medicine and literature after 1800. We will read a variety of texts, including fiction, medical writing, critical and historical work. Key questions will be: how does the advent of modern medicine shape literature? How has the role of both clinician and patient changed over time? What are some key themes in the literature? How does the emerging conversation about “narrative medicine” and “medical humanities” relate to the history and literature of health and disease? Etc. The reading list may include works by Edgar Allen Poe, Harriet Martineau, George Eliot, Arthur Conan Doyle, Franz Kafka, Thomas Mann, and Kazuo Ishiguro.

This course provides upper-division credit in the major, and will be taught with that in mind; however, interdisciplinary work is encouraged, and there is room to tailor your final paper to individual interests. There is a considerable amount of reading. Carefully consider your reading speed and the expectations of the other courses you are taking before committing to this course. The course requirements include a short paper, a long paper, reading quizzes and a creative project.

toptop

LIT 4930

Early LGBT Literature (cross-listed with WST 4930/sec. 04B9)

Jodi Schorb

This course is playfully subtitled “gay literature before the invention of homosexuality,” given that the words “homosexuality’ and “heterosexuality” were not coined until 1869 and 1880 respectively. Most of us take for granted the concept of modern sexual identity: whether we identify as gay, straight, queer, bi, and/or trans, our sexuality is central to our personal identity and sense of self. Early modern artists would find such thinking queer indeed. This literature teaches us about how earlier eras understood the relationship between biological sex, gender expression, and sexual identity.

Before the “invention” of homosexuality, literature and letters abounded with men who professed their erotic desire for other men, women who seduced other women, gender-variant individuals, and (in the parlance of the day) “hermaphrodites.” Some served as objects of ridicule or cautionary tales, but others served as models of virtue, action, and “feeling right.” In American literature, which the course emphasizes, the queer characters that populate the literary landscape prior to 1900 shaped readers’ imagination about the frontier, the city, the “far-isles,” and other imagined spaces of yet-unrealized sexual possibility (including that mythical wonderland, Florida).

The course will hone your ability to draw from primary and secondary sources to research, discuss, and craft written arguments about the following: How did early LGBT texts circulate, and for what purpose? What does focusing on the role of same-sex desire or a text’s queer plots and possibilities help us better see and understand about a text and the culture that helped create it? In what ways does literature reflect existing beliefs, and in what ways does literature challenge existing beliefs and create new sexual knowledge? And most crucially, how did artists who felt personally removed from normative definitions of sexuality imagine their own erotic or sexual selves, seek models through past cultures and literatures, and invent a new language of sexual possibility through literature?

Readings include ancient mythology, Plato’s Symposium, Anne Lister’s Diaries, Shakespeare’s sonnets, Oscar Wilde’s Picture of Dorian Gray, short stories by Mary E. Wilkins Freeman, Willa Cather, and Sarah Orne Jewett; poetry and letters by Walt Whitman and Emily Dickinson; letters by Herman Melville, Alexander Hamilton, and Bayard Taylor; Charles Warren Stoddard’s South Sea Idyls, Florence Converse’s Diana Victrix, Edward Prime Stevenson’s Imre, Achibald Clavering Gunther’s A Florida Enchantment, and Earl Lind’s Autobiography of an Androgyne. You will also read select secondary criticism and theory designed to enhance your comprehension and analysis of our primary texts.

Written Assignments include two short analysis papers, group projects (at least two), and a 7–9 page final essay. Regular attendance and participation are required.

toptop

LIT 4930

Dante for English Majors (cross-listed with MEM 4931/sec. 02AA)

R. Allen Shoaf

This course will cover the Vita Nuova, De Vulgari Eloquentia, the “rime petrose” (“stony rimes” to the “stony Lady”), and all three canticles of the Commedia. Three papers are required, one on each canticle of the Commedia. Students will be expected to involve at least one major British poet influenced by Dante in at least one of the three essays: Chaucer, Milton, Shelley, Eliot, Heaney, e.g. There is no final examination.

toptop

SPC 3605

Speechwriting

Ronald Carpenter

Speechwriting is an advanced composition course. In this course, students acquire stylistic prowess by which their sentences have increased potential to be remembered and quoted to achieve greater persuasiveness and resultant acclaim for you as one who uses the English language well in written discourse. The course is called Speechwriting because models to be imitated are in those most quotable sentences of Abraham Lincoln, Franklin Roosevelt, Winston Churchill, John Kennedy, and Martin Luther King, Jr., for examples. Although you practice these stylistic skills while writing speeches, the acquired prowess is applicable in many future communication endeavors, as speakers or writers, regardless of profession or later, important role in life. The textbook is Ronald H. Carpenter, Choosing Powerful Words: Eloquence that Works.

This course is not about supporting arguments or organizing them into broader discourse. For those skills, other courses are more appropriate. Speechwriting is about the best words and their best orders—within sentences—to achieve optimal impress of your ideas upon readers or listeners. Your writing is perfected in first drafts that you read aloud in class among peers (and for me), wherein you should acquire a sense of what to do to achieve the final products desired at the semester end for a grade. Thus, present drafts when due; listen carefully to other students’ drafts; participate in rewriting others’ sentences; and heed my commentary about all drafts. Do not assume that participation means simply presenting your drafts and listening only to commentary about them.

Your first speech will be written after we analyze and identify specific sources of style in Abraham Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address and John Kennedy’s Inaugural Address. You will rewrite the Gettysburg Address, as Ted Sorensen might have helped John Kennedy write it. This assignment will improve your flexibility as a stylist. For your third speech, which praises a person for whom you have great love or admiration, you must write for an actual occasion when that person will hear or read your statement (you will earn many “points” from that person as well as other people attending the event). For the fourth speech, praising an institution or ideal, you will write in praise of some ideal or institution that you are likely to address in later life, perhaps as a professional person (I predict that years later many of you will take that text from your files and use it again for part—if not most—of a speech that you likely will give). The second speech that you write in the course, exactly 100 words long (no contractions), will be explained when the theory behind its persuasive function is explained in detail.

toptop

SPC 4680

Rhetorical Criticism: Masterpieces of Rhetoric

Ronald Carpenter

Our focus is “masterpieces of rhetoric.” Although many are political discourse, another focus is rhetoric to persuade Americans about armed conflict abroad. Students will examine how some speakers, writers, and filmmakers appealed to attitudes and actions for profound influence upon future events. The goal of the course is students’ refined sense of important rhetorical principles and techniques by which their own discourse is persuasive.

Unlike previous semesters, the course now has no textbook because much of your course material is on-line at http://www.americanrhetoric.com/speechbank.html. Major class assignments are group projects. By the end of the third week, you should be in a group with 4–5 other students to write collaboratively discourse presented to the entire class for discussion and analyses, but these in-class speeches will not be graded. Instead, I grade individual students’ short papers identifying and evaluating rhetorical choices and techniques utilized in the group speeches as discussed in class. I will be naming, defining, and explaining rhetorical factors that you likely will find yourself using well (or poorly). A practical guideline for you to follow is this: if I write a term on the board, the concept should be understood by you, placed in your class notes, defined and understood, and thereby usable in your future.

I am convinced that when groups argue constructively among themselves about fulfilling assignments, final products are better. For example, after viewing Richard Nixon’s famous—or infamous—“Checkers” speech in 1952, we will study Senator Ted Kennedy’s apologia after Ms. Kopechne died late one night in his company. Then, groups of student speechwriters will create a TV speech that Bill Clinton should have given within 48 hours after Monica Lewinsky first became newsworthy. For affiliating with other students this semester, one speechwriting group should be all male and another only females; the rest can be any combination. Individuals’ short papers about group speeches yield one-third of students’ final grades. Please note: all short papers are due the meetings specified in the syllabus (you do not want to be writing several papers as the semester ends, and I do not wish to be inundated with an excessive number of other papers to grade while carefully evaluating your final exams and research papers).

toptop