Undergraduate Courses, Fall 2000

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 3031

American Literature to 1865

David Leverenz

This course will use the Norton Anthology of American Literature, 5th ed., vol. 1, and Harriet Beecher Stowe’s Uncle Tom’s Cabin. The first three or four weeks will focus on short stories by Edgar Allan Poe (you may be wearing a large scarlet “A” around your neck if you misspell his middle name as “Allen”!), Nathaniel Hawthorne, Washington Irving, and Herman Melville, with a short introductory exercise in close reading and then a longer analytic essay comparing some aspect of two stories.

The second part of the course will consider slave narratives by Olaudah Equiano (excerpted), Frederick Douglass, and Harriet Jacobs (excerpted), along with Herman Melville’s novella “Benito Cereno.” A second comparative essay will focus on two of these four texts. We will then discuss two best-selling novels: Susannah Rowson’s Charlotte Temple (1793) and Harriet Beecher Stowe’s Uncle Tom’s Cabin (1852). After novels comes a new yet older genre, the spiritual narrative. We will look at several variations on what I call “the Divine Male Loner” in antebellum American literature: Jonathan Edwards’s “Personal Narrative,” Emerson’s “Self-Reliance,” and the poetry of Walt Whitman, with perhaps some excerpts from Thoreau’s Walden, depending on student interest. A third comparative essay will focus on two among those texts. We will conclude with one or two weeks of immersion in the poetry of Emily Dickinson.

I usually change the syllabus at least a little after the first week, when the introductory questionnaires tell me what you have already read and what you want to read. I hope to include at least some juicy excerpts from Melville’s Moby Dick as well. The course will emphasize close readings and informal discussions.

Work required: attendance, at least one short close-reading exercise in the first two weeks (1–2 pp., 5%), three comparative close readings (4–6 pp., 25% each, highest grade gets 30%), and weekly or every-other-week quizzes or responses (15%). The quizzes will be mostly take-home,with one or two in-class questions. I may try to devise a new format this time. No final exam – I dislike giving them almost as much as I disliked taking them.

Grading policy: I give A’s to essays using an original and spirited argument to illuminate complexities of language as well as theme. I give B+’s to well organized, well developed, relatively error-free essays with sparks of originality or daring, and B’s to competent essays needing more complex development and/or clearer focus. Lower grades mean greater problems with development, structure, and grammar. Recurrent grammatical errors lower the grade; spelling errors and typos don’t, within reason, though I have an irrational phobia about essays that use “it’s” as a possessive. The best essays sustain complex and/or audacious arguments; a good “B” essay capably summarizes and compares themes. I encourage prewriting (essay drafts handed in a week ahead of the due date).

Grades will be based entirely on your writing. I don’t include class participation in the grading because I try to make class sessions non-judgmental and relaxed, so that anyone can try out ideas without feeling silly, weird, or stupid.

To find out more, e-mail me. I’m teaching in Italy during the Spring, and won’t be back in Gainesville until mid-August. My e-mail address is ldavid@english.ufl. I check my e-mail two or three times a week.

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AML 3270

African-American Literature I

Harry Shaw

African-American Literature: Beginning to 1940 will provide a survey of the most historically and literarily significant writings of Black Americans from 1760 to 1940. Major authors include:

Students will be assigned several works for in-depth study of given authors, including supplementary xeroxed materials as necessary. The course work will consist of discussion of and writing about assigned readings, audio-visual presentations, oral reports and guest lecturers. Students will be expected to embellish their discussions, assigned papers, and tests with the help of critical essays available at the library or the Institute of Black Culture.

Students will be graded on performance on one major paper, tests (mid-term and final), quizzes, classroom participation, attendance, and punctuality.

Texts include:

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AML 3271

African-American Literature II

Mildred Hill-Lubin

This course surveys the literary development of African American Literature from 1940 to the Present. It begins with “Realism, Naturalism and Modernism” of the Forties and Fifties, includes the Black Arts Movement of the Sixties and early Seventies, and the Literary Renaissance of Black Women Writers.

Texts:

Requirements:

Assignments should be read before class and students are expected to attend class and participate in the class discussions and other activities of the course. Participation will count heavily where grade average is borderline.

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AML 3285

Contemporary Native American Writing

Carl Bredahl

This section of AML 3285 will be an introduction to the fiction and poetry of contemporary Native Americans. We will focus on work between Scott Momaday’s House Made of Dawn in 1968 and Sherman Alexie’s Indian Killer in 1996. Additional figures to be covered are:

Classes will emphasize discussion. Writing assignments will include weekly 1–2 page response papers on the assigned reading and a longer paper later in the term. There will also be a mid-term exam and final exam, most probably a take home final.

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AML 4225

19th-Century African American Women: Their Lives and Literature

Debra King

During most of the nineteenth-century, Victorian values and ideologies were the rule. With the downfall of slavery and the rise of industrialization and urbanization many of these standards changed and new codes of living surfaced. This course is designed to give students an understanding of how the African-American woman, her views and her goals fit into the changing system, what her means of survival were, and how her identity was constructed within the age of genteel America. Students will learn what roles black women played in feminist pursuits and what voices clamored to he heard. These and other topics will be addressed through the use of novels, autobiography, slave narratives, prose, poetry and art.

Assignments: TBA

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AML 4242

Contested Terrain: Contemporary United States Literature

Kim Emery

In recent years, the very notion of a standard “American Literature” has once again been publicly and persuasively challenged. The ever-shifting boundaries defining a body of celebrated, canonical U.S. texts have always demarcated nothing if not an attractive “ground” on which marginalized literatures might “stake a claim.” Interestingly, the geographic metaphors informing academic debates over the margins and centers, borders and boundaries of the “American canon” evoke an apparently quintessentially “American” concern with mobility, frontiers, place, and prerogative that also runs through diverse U.S. Literatures.

The plays, poems, short stories, and novels assigned in this course all share this preoccupation with contested spaces. The course will emphasize comparative analysis of ideas about community and territory as negotiated in and through post-WWII works of diverse genres, cultural attachments, and political affiliations. Our exploration will be structured by explicit attention to metaphors of movement, place, borders, and transgression. We will discuss different kinds of community affiliation (linguistic, religious, racial, economic, ethnic, gender-based, geographic, sexual, national, philosophical), their overlappings and imbrications, and the implications – metaphorical and practical – of varous kinds of transgression. Finally, we will attempt to draw from this analysis of diverse U.S. literatures new ways of thinking about the “contested space” demarcated by the phrase “American Literature” itself.

Provisional Reading List:

Requirements:

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AML 4242

Latina/o Ethnicity

Tace Hedrick

This course will concentrate on the fiction and art which came out of the Latino Civil Rights movements of the 1960s and 70s: Cesar Chavez’ farmworkers movement, the Brown Power movement (El Movimiento), and the Nuyorican Young Lords movements of the 60s and 70s. As well, we will be looking at the art and writings of the Latina and Chicana feminist movements of the early 1970s. Course material will include a history of the Civil Rights and Power movements, texts such as Oscar Zeta Acosta’s Revolt of the Cockroach People and Autobiography of a Brown Buffalo, Piri Thomas’ Down These Mean Streets, Chicana poet Lorna Dee Cervantes, the mural art of the time and work which came out of the Teatro Campesino such as Zoot Suit, and the early 80s work of such writers as Cherrie Moraga and Gloria Anzaldua.

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AML 4282

Black Women Writing: Novels

Mildred Hill-Lubin

Andree Nicola McLaughlin writes in Wild Women in the Whirlwind:

Who would have believed that the “Kidnapped African” would be the architect of a literary renaissance in a foreign land? Who would have expected that thrice within a margin of one hundred years after slavery’s abolition, the descendants of slaves – for whose forbears reading and writing were against the law – would produce some of the most widely read writers in the modern world? Who could have known that, following in the steps of the Harlem Renaissance, The Black Arts Movement, the “daughters of captivity” would become leading spokespersons of their own causes with international constituencies? The literary upsurge by Black women in the second half of the twentieth century unveils a renaissance of the spirit inspired by those who have refused to surrender. Those who have resisted their oppression. Those who have undertaken to remake the universe to own their future.

Purpose: To explore this phenomenon, the writing of contemporary African American Women Writers. We shall examine what, why, and how these women write as they testify to the concerns, frustrations, joy, experiences, and triumphs of Black women today. Our focus will be the novel, but we will include a few short stories and criticisms. We will try to determine whether these writers represent a community, share similar interests, themes, styles, and audiences. I have included an African author, Ama Ata Aidoo, to introduce the African Diaspora concept. We shall address topics such as voice, self, identity, spirituality, sexuality, motherhood and other mothers, male-female relations; what it means to be a Black woman writer in America, the politics of publishing, womanism, feminisim, theory, and criticism. Above all, I want to hear your voice, your interests, your comments and criticism of these writers.

Texts:

Requirements:

Students are expected to attend class and participate in class discussions. Assignments should be read before the class discussions.

Credit:

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AML 4311

Hemingway

Carl Bredahl

This section of 4311 will deal with the writings of Ernest Hemingway. We will read most of the novels published during his lifetime as well as a number of short stories. As for posthumous work, we’ll include Garden of Eden. The class will be discussion, and students will prepare weekly 1-2 page response papers on the assigned material. A longer paper will be due later in the term. Additionally, there will be a mid-term exam and a final, most probably a take home final. For both the longer paper and the take home final, students will make use of American Literary Scholarship, a bibliographic series available in the library.

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AML 4311

The Language of Politics in Herman Melville

Stephanie Smith

“It was the year 1774. The difficulties long pending between the colonies and England were arriving at their crisis. Hostilities were certain.”

And so Herman Melville’s weary hero, Israel Potter, “Goes to the Wars; and Reaching Bunker Hill in Time to Be of Service,” becomes a Revolutionary war hero. But in the end, his patriotism garners him little of worth; impoverished, “his scars proved only his medals. He dictated a little book, of the record of his fortunes. But long ago it faded out of print – himself out of being – his name out of memory.”

In this course, we will raise the faded print of the political and cultural stakes within and without Melville’s texts such as found in his Civil War poetry, his short stories, and, of course, his novels: Moby Dick, Israel Potter, and Billy Budd by examining a number of questions regarding the history and politics of publication, the politics of the literary in early America, as well as the repeated political questions Melville’s stories raise for contemporary readers.

Requirements:

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AML 4453 American Protest Writing

Pat Schmidt

Where are we going, Walt Whitman?; The doors close in an hour.
Which way does your beard point tonight?
(I touch your book and dream of our odyssey in the supermarket and feel absurd.)
Will we walk all night through solitary streets? The trees add shade to shade, lights out in the houses, we’ll both be lonely.
Will we stroll dreaming of the lost America of love past blue Automobiles in driveways, home to our silent cottage?
Ah, dear father, graybeard, lonely old courage-teacher, what Amer-
ica did you have when Charon quit poling his ferry and you got out on a
smoking bank and stood watching the boat disappear on the black waters of
Lethe?       

– from “A Supermarket in California, ” Allen Ginsberg, Berkeley, 1955

Vietnam protests, Camelot, the Johnson presidency, the rise of a counter-culture and the return of Richard Nixon – all are signatures of two decades that continue to beguile and frustrate thoughtful scholars and students alike.  Remembered best, perhaps, is the disorder that erupted after the election of John Kennedy in 1960 and ended before Ronald Reagan became president in 1980. Intertwined in these decades are dual strands of idealism and cynicism, hope and despair.  In a discussion of the sixties, though perhaps no more so than in any other age, the observer’s angle of vision is all. Unlike the equally complex but more homogeneously perceived drama of 1776 – when, in John Adams’s idiom, thirteen clocks amazingly struck as one – the complexities and contradictions of the sixties virtually define the period, existing as they do within a grid of values that has shaped not only the observer’s perceptions but has itself been shaped by the period.

Such observations suggest a strong connection between the nature of social change and the role of the past. If the past is prologue – as I believe it is – what hieroglyphs remain and how are they to be explained? To compress such inquiries into one course is daunting. But by utilizing a variety of readings, lectures, and film footage from 1950-1970, I believe that we can learn a great deal about such phenomena as the Vietnam anti-War Protests, the Civil Rights Movement, feminism, and the counter-culture. In the process, I would like us to come away with a deeper understanding of the ways in which our experiences shape the narrative structures by which we tell ourselves about our world, and the connection of such structures to the creation of meaning, both in fiction and nonfiction.

Several articles, book excerpts, and primary documents will be placed on reserve. Writing assignments will consist of a 5-7 page essay, a research project prospectus, and a research paper. Viewing history through the lens of literature, and reading literature through the lens of history, creates a dialectic that should enrich our understanding of both, providing insight into the social changes that are still Blowin’ in the Wind.

Texts:

Additional readings:

Recommended:

Films:

Assignments:

Written assignments include one short essay, a research project prospectus, and a research paper. All papers must be double-spaced with title pages, endnotes or textual notes (MLA or Chicago) and must include complete bibliographies.

Late papers earn a drop of one letter grade for each day late.

Short Paper: (5 to 7 pages) 20 points. Due week four of the course. Carefully striving for a balance between liberal and conservative views, select a moment in the decade–the 1962 admission of James Meredith to the University of Mississippi; the passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964; the July 1967 riots in Newark and Detroit; the 1969 Woodstock Music and Art Fair; Eugene McCarthy’s decision in 1968 to enter the race for president; the anti-war “moratorium” of October 15, 1969; the May 4, 1970 slaying of students on the campus of Kent State. Compare the reporting of this event by Fortune, U.S. News, The National Observer to that of The New Republic, Harper’s, Rolling Stone, Time, Newsweek. Any illusion of mimesis (an accurate copy) of reality will be challenged as you read these articles. Discuss this phenomenon. Attention must be directed to the way that language acts as a vehicle for mediating between external reality and cultural expectations. From what set of assumptions (about order, hierarchy, military might, etc.) did the writers, whose work you consulted, most likely begin? How are they reflected in his/her structure of ideas, examples, metaphors, evidence?

Research Project: (15 to 20 pp) 50 points. Due two weeks before the end of the semester. This project is an extension of the one above. The topic must receive the approval of the instructor and should again draw on primary sources. A one-page prospectus that outlines the topic, explains the approach being used and the questions considered, as well as a discussion of relevant information about sources, will be required by week eight. In this paper, you are being asked to look for what Alfred North Whitehead called “the curves of history.” Utilizing the concepts discusssed above, your focus will shift to the larger canvas of which the above events are a part. Topics may range from contemporary reportage of: the consumerism of the fifties, the growth of the counter-culture, the role of the beats, and the push for sexual freedom, to an assessment of literary tastes, reportage of the 1968 presidential (Republican or Democratic) race, campus protest, the environmental or gay or women’s movement, etc. Your assignment is to explore “the idea of the variable ...and rate of change” during a particular time in the twentieth century and articulate the ways in which representations of such changes became “partial truths.” During the last two weeks of the class, you will be asked to discuss your process of discovery and the specific insights gleaned from your research with the class.

Plagiarism, the undocumented use of someone else’s work, will not be tolerated and will result in a flunking grade. If you do not know how or when to cite a source, see me.

Quizzes, homework, etc.: 15 points

Class participation: 15 points

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CRW 3110

Advanced Seminar in Fiction Writing

Josh Russell

CRW 3110 provides you with a place to share your fiction and offer and receive constructive criticism; it also serves as a weekly reminder that you are not alone in the sometimes solitary endeavor of writing.

Stories:

In this workshop you will write three full-length (10-15 page) stories and bimonthly one- or two-page exercises. All work will be discussed in workshop. A revision of one full-length story is due the last time we meet.

Workshop:

Stories turned in one week will be discussed the next. Your participation in the workshop community is important. For each story we cover in class you will compose in triplicate a one-paragraph typed response (one copy for the writer, one copy for me, one copy for you). Remember that as a member of the workshop one of your primary goals is to help others become better fiction writers. For this reason your responses should carefully and wisely assess a story’s strengths and weaknesses and offer its writer constructive criticism. I don’t allow cruelty in the workshop but your peers won’t learn anything if you aren’t tough – remember this when your work is being discussed. Type everything and make enough copies for everyone: one copy of each full-length story for each workshopper, enough copies of each exercise so that two people can share. Stories turned in late will lose their place in the queue and will have their grades lowered. Absences are not allowed.

Book Review & Presentation:

The following short story collections are on reserve at the Smathers Library:

Each workshop member will choose a collection from the dozen, read it, and offer a fifteen-minute critical presentation and a 500-word review.

Note: Please don’t make the mistake of thinking that enrollment in this workshop guarantees you an A. Writing workshops, especially at this level, are serious business. To receive a good grade you must complete all of the assigned work and complete it well and on time, you must come to every class and come prepared, you must participate in discussions, and by the end of the term your work must show improvement.

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CRW 3110

Advanced Seminar in Fiction Writing: Writing and Reading Short Stories

David Leavitt

She would always sleep with her husband and with another man in the course of the same day, and then the rest of the day, for whatever was left to her of that day, she would exploit by incanting, “French film, French film.”

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,” quoted above in its entirety). 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 English or American 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 (presented according to a pre-arranged schedule) and occasional in-class exercises.

For the first several weeks, I’ll be giving you assignments of a vaguely experimental nature – for instance, to tell a story from the viewpoint of an historical figure of your own choosing (Janis Joplin, Jack the Ripper). You’ll then set to work on stories of your own devising, which may have evolved from these 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.) Length is irrelevant, and you will be neither rewarded nor punished for prolixity (or brevity); a story has to be as long as it has to be. 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: to be the best writer you can be. As for your own work, it will be judged only according to the terms it sets out for itself – but remember, setting the terms is often the hardest part of the job.

The reading may include selections from the following books:

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.

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CRW 3310

Advanced Seminar in Poetry Writing

Sidney Wade

This is an upper-division poetry writing class, in which we will choose a selection of forms to study. Students will identify from a large selection 10 to 12 forms they would like to learn more about, and then we will carefully examine and discuss each one and write an example of it. There will be an assignment every week. Not for the fainthearted.

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CRW 4905

Advanced Seminar: Fiction Workshop

Padgett Powell

Note: What follows is a sample syllabus for this course as I teach it. Specifics of assignment and reading change each time I teach the course. Regard this description as a rough map only.

The objective of this course, the last in our series of undergraduate workshops in fiction writing, is to do something to you, by whatever accident happily obtains, that helps you or makes you write fiction better in three months than you do today. Since that arguably is the objective of any workshop worth anything, let us up the ante: in this workshop, from the three or so pieces you will tender, we will seek to make them lasting, able-bodied fictions you can show off, apply to graduate programs with, or publish. This is the time to prepare manuscripts for submission to graduate schools in writing if you are intending to suffer such a fate. Let me know if you are. This is also the time you become the best undergraduate writer of fiction you can become. If you feel this objective has not been clearly stated at the outset, please raise your hand.

Grading: I expect your full efforts at writing and at criticizing for the benefit of others – less than that is less than excellent and will not merit an A. I will be stingy with As anyway. They do not become serious students of writing. If I manage to deem a person excellent in his or her writing, or excellent in criticism, or in both, we are looking at someone who will get an A in the invidious world of “grading stories.” I do not like the invidious world of “grading stories,” but I like the world of inflated grades and the perception that creative-writing courses are easy even less. So my grading policy is a mixed signal – and this too has been clearly stated at the outset.

Attend religiously, speak cogently when asked, surround yourself with the mantle of intelligent reticence when not, write with vigor and surprise, and all will be well.

We will read and discuss two or three of our own pieces each week and one or two of the pieces by our professionals. Prepare copies for classmates and for me and distribute them the week before you appear on the schedule. Write a one-page (max) letter to the author of each piece under review, including yourself, copy to me. Some, sometimes all, of these will be read aloud to generate and govern discussion. I will commend letters which are good criticism. Over time I will reduce the word limit, and I may eliminate letter writing during the term.

We will relieve the regular work of class – which is trying to determine what weakens the work brought in, and what might strengthen it – with various exercises; see below.

We will read from The Collected Stories of William Trevor and Sixty Stories by Donald Barthelme. These are at Goerings’, or will be soon (I will notify you). These two writers are technically unalike and sufficiently alike in their final concerns, I think, that reading them together can be weird and weirdly informative about craft.

The nature and direction of a fiction workshop as I run one is very much open, a function of the students’ work and criticisms. You know by now (veterans most of you of at least two of these endeavors) that all workshops to an extent must derive their content from the work brought in, and at this level I try to let class have its head as much as possible. This places a certain burden on you, the students, to help me in the battle against the bugbear of DISORGANIZATION. If I encourage you to all chip in your opinions about what might make a given piece of fiction better, and I do (these opinions expressed in a way usable and palatable to the author – of which there is, I think, no harder thing to say right on Earth), then we must perforce almost certainly live with at least the illusion of Disorgany. The course is highly organized–about the disorder you in your groping to learn to write bring in to it. If in good conscience you are wont to have to deem that organization “not conducted in an organized fashion” when you evaluate the course, I ask you to desist now and depart. There is not a body of knowledge to be conveyed you about the writing of fiction in an orderly fashion, though there are hundreds of books that pretend that there is, and you are free to pursue them.

The essential maneuver will be relieved by these various exercises:

* Bring copies for class

Consider:

  1. The beauty of life inheres in the obstreperousness of desire. –Anon.
  2. My best stories come out of nowhere, with no concern for form at all. –Barry Hannah
  3. I can take a sentence apart and tell you why I did it; obviously that’s the key to the whole thing, being able to write a sentence, and I’ve got a sense of what my sentences ought to do. –Pete Dexter
  4. Learn to play your instruments, then get sexy. –Debbie Harry
  5. Some people run to conceits or wisdom but I hold to the hard, brown, nut-like word. –Donald Barthelme (character)
  6. I was struck by the fact that I couldn’t find in him any passion for food or wine or hunting or Kursk nightingales or epileptic pigeons or Russian literature or trotting horses or Hungarian jackets or cards or billiards or going dancing in the evening or paying visits to the local town or to the capital or paper and sugar-beet factories or brightly decorated gazebos or tea parties or trace-horses driven into bad ways or even fat coachmen with belts right up to their armpits, those magnificent coachmen whose every movement, God knows why, makes their eyes literally pop out of their heads . . . “What sort of landowner is this?” I thought. –Ivan Turgenev
  7. With arrows, whose point was shaped into the form of a crescent, Commodus often intercepted the rapid career, and cut asunder the long bony neck, of the ostrich. –Edward Gibbon
  8. To his mind the opportunity to insult a successful ape came from the hand of providence. –Flannery O’Connor
  9. He is the man who brought pederasty into disrepute. –Winston Churchill
  10. Art is not difficult because it wishes to be difficult but because it wishes to be art. –Donald Barthelme

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CRW 4906

Advanced Seminar: Poetry Workshop

William Logan

The linnet’s is a beautiful song. There are four-and-twenty changes in a linnet’s song. It’s one of the beautifullest songbirds we’ve got. It sings ’toys’ as we call them; that is, it makes sounds which we distinguish in the fancy as the tollock eeke eeke quake le wheet; single eke eke quake wheets; or eek eek quake chowls; eege pipe chowl: laugh; eege poy chowls; rattle; pipe; fear; pugh and poy.

This seems like Greek to you, sir, but it’s the tunes we use in the fancy. What we terms ’fear’ is a sound like fear, as if they was frightened; ’laugh’ is a kind of shake, nearly the same as the ’rattle.’

– from Mayhew’s London

This workshop will ask you to write at least a dozen poems, one per week, and to read a broad selection of modern poetry, from Robert Frost to Carolyn Forché. Each week the workshop will consider for discussion poems from the past and poems from students.

This is the most senior workshop in poetry, for students who hope to become poets and possibly attend an MFA program in poetry. Students from this class have gone on to the University of Iowa, University of Virginia, Columbia University, University of Michigan, and other MFA programs. The prerequisite is CRW 3310. Advance admission is by manuscript and permission of the instructor. Please submit a manuscript of four poems to the instructor’s mailbox in Turlington 4301 by March 15, 2000. Include your name, e-mail address, and home phone number. A list of those admitted will be posted by March 26. Students admitted will be able to register through Telegator. During Drop/Add, if seats remain, only the prerequisite is necessary for admission.

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ENC 3254

Writing in the Discipline

TBA

YOU MUST CALL 392-5421 TO REGISTER OR TO CHECK ON COURSE OFFERINGS.

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ENC 3310

Advanced Exposition

Wayne Losano

This section of ENC 3310 will focus primarily on style (concreteness, economy, accuracy, etc.). Readings will include Zinsser’s Writing Well and McPhee’s essay collection Giving Good Weight, plus whatever else I can get reproduced. We will also review as many aspects of grammar/mechanics as student writing dictates.

Requirements:

Four papers, basically in the traditional modes of exposition – description, comparison and contrast, analysis, etc.

Papers will vary in length according to the nature of the assignment, the style of the writer, and the whim of the instructor, but none should be of epic proportions. Accuracy of presentation and effectiveness of style are more important than length.

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ENC 3310

Advanced Expository Writing

Jane Yellowlees Douglas

This course has been designed to take the guesswork, the mystery, the anxiety and anguish out of writing. During this semester, you will learn what makes writing seem clear and concise, what makes it “flow” – even what makes for elegant, powerful, memorable writing. Along the way, you’ll learn how the history, grammar, and usage of English can tend to make certain ways of writing seem tired, confusing, or tedious, as well as how some supposedly indisputible principles of English grammar have become about as authoritative (and practical) as long-forgotten blue laws.

You’ll also look at “good” and “bad” writing and analyze the qualities of each, learning how to apply the principles covered in class to your own assignments during both the drafting and revision stages.

Throughout the term, we’ll explore the hallmarks of good nonfiction writing, with a special focus on writers who have incorporated narrative techniques and some pretty wild stylistic turns into articles on science, animal behavior, biography, and museums, including extracts from:

Course requirements: 3 papers (6-8 pp.), as well as extended critiques and evaluations of 2 peer submissions for each assignment.

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ENC 3312

Advanced Argumentative Writing

Pat Schmidt

Required texts (available at Goering’s Books):

One purpose of this course is to help you develop skills that enable you to frame arguments of real weight.  A second is to help you develop confidence in deciding the strength of arguments made by others. In both instances, one must be able to demonstrate clearly the reasons for beliefs and display cogency in making logical inferences.

What we are “about” is more than that, however. In the words of Wayne C. Booth and Marshall W. Gregory – the authors of one of the assigned texts – we are “moral agents attempting to do something in or to the world.” Thus, it is hoped that in addition to refining student’s skills, this course will nourish the quality of thought that underlies good writing, both through readings selected from the course and through class discussions. This second, loftier goal is the point of a story related by Robert Maynard Hutchins, former president of the University of Chicago. Though Hutchins uses the example of an Indian house servant, the character could have been virtually anyone who had been trained exclusively to operate by rote, which Hutchins equates with a technical education.

My father came home from India about thirty years ago with the story of a British woman who was plagued to death by the questions of her Indian servant.  Finally, she said to him: ‘Why don’t you use your common sense?’  He replied: ‘Lady, common sense is the gift of God; I have only a technical education.’

Like the process of learning, argumentation is much more than a mere skill. The Greeks regarded dialectic (a sophisticated form of argument) as a method of seeking and arriving at the truth.  In Plato’s writings, dialectic was concerned with the supreme Form, that of the Good, and he placed it at the core of the education of the philosopher-rulers. Dialectic always had the same subject matter – the unchanging essence of each thing. Aristotle saw it as invaluable in discovering one’s own premises in discussions with others and for examining the unprovable first principles of the sciences. Though in the twentieth century dialectic has ceded center stage to less sophisticated forms of argument, rhetorical choices still shape the majority of our social interactions, while assumptions determine our choice of ideas, and indeed even the nature of our individual versions of TRUTH.

Requirements:

Students enrolled in this class will be expected to write four out-of-class papers, each of which comprises 20% of the final grade. Class exercises, homework and quizzes (10%) and class participation (10%) will comprise the remaining 20%. Paper 1= 5 pp.; paper 2 = 3pp; paper 3 = 8–10pp; paper 4 = 8–10pp.  Papers must be double-spaced with title pages. A bibliography and end/footnotes are required where appropriate. For late papers, the grade drops one letter grade for each late day.

Cheating of any sort will result in a flunking grade for the assignment and possibly the course. The student Honor Code should guide behavior. To alert readers and give proper credit to writers whose ideas and/or words have been utilized, “you must cite all quotations, summaries, and paraphrases as well as any facts or ideas that are not common knowledge.” [Diana Hacker, A Writer’s Reference (New York: St. Martin’s Press, 1989), 169.

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ENC 3312

Advanced Argumentative Writing

Blake Scott

This is a rhetorically-based writing course, which means that it aims to help writers practice composing the available means of persuasion in several specific situations. We will use classical rhetorical theory to identify, evaluate, and construct arguments about various contemporary issues. Our source for arguments and for models of effective and ineffective prose will be the New York Times. The daily assignment for both students and the professor will be to read the newspaper, paying special attention to different aspects of it at different times. But this is neither a journalism course nor a course on current events, although I hope the course will help you become a better informed and thoughtful citizen. The emphasis of the course will be on critical thinking and on effective, persuasive writing.

We will spend some time analyzing arguments that appear in the newspaper, from new analysis articles to editorials to sports columns. Some of these pieces will seem like overt arguments, and some will not. The purpose of this analysis will be to learn about a range of argumentative structures, moves, appeals, and styles. Since we will be both studying and writing arguments, we will write two different types of papers in the course. Some of your papers will be analytic, directed toward an academic audience, identifying and critiquing the rhetorical and linguistic features of arguments. Other assignments will ask you to construct your own arguments for readers of the Times, our campus newspapers, or other local audiences. Expect to do about 30 pages of writing, divided among 5 major assignments and a few minor ones.

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ENC 3414

Hypermedia

Greg Ulmer

ENC 3414 Treats the World Wide Web in particular, and the internet in general, as an object of study worthy of the same critical and theoretical attention as that given to cinema and television. We will be concerned not only with the new forms of art and entertainment emerging online, but also with the internet as a new “public sphere,” a new site in which citizens participate in the making of collective as well as of personal meaning and identity. We will gain some perspective by placing the invention of the web in the context of the cultural transformations associated with film and print (the screen and the page). ENC 3414 is taught in a computerized classroom, and all assignments involve making websites. No previous experience with computing (other than word processing) is required.

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ENC 4212

Professional Editing

Blake Scott

This course teaches students how to perform different levels of editing on a range of professional texts, including both printed and on-line texts as well as technical and literary ones. Students will practice techniques of copymarking, proofreading, copyediting, and comprehensive editing in a series of projects involving actual audiences and purposes. In the process, students will also refine their proficiency with elements of style, arrangement, and visual design. Other foci of the course include the editing of data displays and hypertext, as well as the editor’s role in the production process.

Assignments will include two copyediting projects (one with a scholarly journal article and one with a manuscript from the University of Florida press), a forum analysis, two short reports, and a comprehensive editing project involving a technical text for a novice audience.

This course is excellent preparation for students interested in applying to jobs in technical writing/editing or the publishing industry. Students should have taken Professional Writing or at least received a high grade in Technical Writing.

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ENC 4260

Advanced Professional Communication: Scholarly Writing

Jane Yellowlees Douglas

Course Objectives: If you were to randomly query Florida faculty members, you would discover that a surprising number of them learned how to write publishable research papers and grant applications entirely through sweat, anxiety, and hard work – not under the auspices of any course. You’re somewhat more fortunate; this course covers most things you’ll need to know to write publication-worthy research papers in a variety of disciplines, as well as how to translate your research into readable prose that can be understood by grants foundations and the general public alike. Along the way, you’ll learn the stylistic and organizational strategies for writing clear, efficient, and highly effective sentences, paragraphs, and documents. And you’ll also learn everything from how to formulate a robust hypothesis to how to handle your research discussion when your outcomes haven’t quite panned out as you expected.

Disclaimer and warning: I’ve designed this course to accommodate the needs of students in the Florida University Scholars Program, specifically those who have been pursuing directed research prior to enrolling in the course. While you can benefit from this course without having lab or research experience, you should be prepared to work harder than your more experienced peers, as you’ll need to identify research issues, questions, and appropriate methods as soon as possible during the first weeks of this course.

Assignments: Your primary assignments include a brief (4–5 pp.) research/grant proposal, a research paper of at least 4000 words (approximately 16 pages), and either a brief newspaper article (2–3 pp.) or a press release (2–3 pp.) that conveys to a general audience the importance and implications of your research.

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ENC 4956

Overseas Studies in Studies

Undergraduate Coordinator

Prerequisite: This course must be approved by the Undergraduate Coordinator before the student travels overseas. It may be repeated with a change of topic up to a maximum of 15 credit hours.

This study, which may count towards the English major, involves course work taken as part of an APPROVED study abroad program.

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ENG 3010

The Theory and Practice of Modern Criticism: Haunting, Spectrality, the Uncanny

Julian Wolfreys

While Jacques Derrida’s Specters of Marx is, arguably, the most visible of critical texts which address the notion of spectrality and the related concerns of the phantom, the phantasm, haunting and hauntology, ghosts, the uncanny, and matters of apparitional phenomena embodied in textual form, it is by no means the only study to make manifest these interests. Specifically, the spectral has interested Derrida from his earlier writings, while, more generally, there is a pronounced, if sporadic interest, in literary and cultural criticism, in philosophy, psychoanalysis and politics.

This course will address these critical interests, from Freud and Heidegger to the present day, particularly as discourse on the spectral pertains to literary and cultural studies, and to psychoanalytic and political analysis. In addressing notions of ghosting and haunting, we will examine related issues of temporality and untimeliness, revenance, the phantasm and the simulacrum, hallucination and illusion, and the tele-technological proliferation of the spectral, asking how we may learn to read what effects the proliferation of spectrality may have with regard to the virtualisation or erasure of the subject from history.

Reading Material:

While this course will concentrate on critical and theoretical materials, it will also attempt to address the analytical implications of the critical material being read through discussion of a limited number of literary and filmic texts.

Critical Texts:

Possible Literary and Film Texts:

There will also be a photocopy packet available, including possible other readings by Maria Abraham and Nicholas Torok, Giorgio Agamben, Elisabeth Bronfen, Terry Castle, Hélène Cixous, Jacques Derrida, Sigmund Freud, Martin Heidegger, Julia Kristeva, Ernesto Laclau, Emmanuel Lévinas, Ned Lukacher, Judy Purdom, Herman Rapaport, Nicholas Royle, Mark Wigley, Slavoj Zizek

Course Requirements:

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ENG 3011

The Major Theorists

James Paxson

The Major Theorists treats the historical pageant of important critical theorists beginning with Plato and culminating with the deconstructionists and feminists of the twentieth century. The course will familiarize students with the prime ideas and principles of the critics under study, and it will seek to understand such ideas and conceptual schemes in terms of the historical and cultural moments that produced them. Attention will also be paid to the application of our theorists to coeval literary productions and to imitations from eras beyond. (Does Aristotle’s Poetics provide an effective analytical framework for understanding a whole range of tragedies? How can Sidney’s Apology for Poetry inform our readings of Spenser’s Faerie Queene or Shakespeare’s plays?) The course will also address the question of “canon formation” now essential to theoretical study: how and why do we include certain thinkers among a historical lineage of “major theorists”? How are anthologies or textbooks for courses like English 3011 constructed?

Required Text: Critical Theory Since Plato, revised edition (Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1992); available at Goering’s Bagel Land Book Annex

Requirements and Policies:

Assignments and Grading:

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ENG 3113

Movies as a Narrative Art

Julian Smith

Prerequisite: Any of the following: ENG 2300, ENG 3115, ENG 3121, ENG 3122, or permission of instructor.

Course Description: This section of ENG 3113 is designed to explore the conventions of the mainstream “Hollywood” narrative film and the cultural, social, political, and aesthetic implications of those conventions.

Course Meetings: We will meet for discussion on Tuesday, periods 5–6, and on Thursday, period 6–and on Wednesday evening to see a film on videotape or laserdisk.

Required Essays: You are required to turn in at least two drafts of at least three essays of increasing length concentrating on such matters as structure, narrative point of view, and other conventions. Based on research, your last essay should deal with the evolution or development of a current or recent film chosen by you from a list of films approved by the instructor.

Conferences: You are expected to read the final draft of each essay aloud to the instructor in a conference in his office.

Grading: Your final grade will be based on all work over the course of the semester, including essays, quizzes, and class participation. There will not be a final examination.

Required Texts: David Bordwell and Kristin Thompson, Film Art; Kristin Thompson, Srorytelling in the New Hollywood; Timothy Corrigan, A Short Guide to Writing about Film.

Other Readings: You are expected to make use of books on reserve dealing with the theory and history of film narrative and with major genres.

Special Note: Please do not register for this course if you are registered for my section of ENG 4133.

Instructor: J. Smith (Tur 4318; 392 6650, ext 248); smithj@english.ufl.edu

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ENG 3115

Introduction to Film Criticism and Theory

Scott Nygren

This course will introduce current theoretical contexts for engaging the contemporary media environment and will consider the writing of theoretical texts and the making of new films as parallel activities.

We will study world media through close visual analysis of individual films, stressing the historical and international diversity of cinematic approaches and styles. At the same time, we will study contemporary critical writing on film and its basis in the larger domain of cultural theory. Emphasis will be on such basic issues as audience identification, social formations and cultural context as articulated through a variety of post-structuralist methodologies. After introducing phenomenology and and structuralism as points of departure, the class will consider psychoanalysis, deconstruction, discourse, gender and race en route to postcolonial, postmodern and heterological approaches.

Our principle purpose will be to investigate the conjuncture of theoretical issues with an experience of specific film texts, and the function of these texts in the past and present workings of history, especially as this leads towards questions for future production and study. The working assumption here is that alphabetic writing and film production both constitute modes of inscription, and represent two ways of embodying the same cultural process.

Mastery of so many topics is neither possible nor expected. The goal is to understand the conditions and motives that led to the rethinking of media, and to initiate theoretical strategies in your own work.

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ENG 3115

Introduction to Film: Theory and Criticism

Greg Ulmer

ENG 3115 is an introduction to the DISCIPLINE of media studies in the Liberal Arts, including the theoretical and critical discourse of published research and the methods and goals used in the professional study of cinema, television, video, and computing. We will focus this course by taking up the theme of media literacy (electracy). The question for the semester concerns the use of the world wide web not only as a resource for information, but as a medium in which to conduct our own learning experience. The object of study includes critical theory about film as a language, as well as experiments that attempt to conduct theoretical inquiry directly in the media of film, video, the web.

This course is taught in the Networked Writing Environment, a computerized classroom. The work for the semester requires making several websites. No previous experience with computing (other than word processing) is required. In addition to the regular meeting time, there is an additional 3-hour meeting for the screening of videotapes. ENG3115 fulfills the prerequisite for enrollment in upper division film and media studies courses in the English Department.

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ENG 3121

History of the Film I: Silent Period to the Introduction of Sound

Maureen Turim

Note: Class will meet T 4 R 4–5, in Turl 2322, plus film screening T 9–1.

Course Goals: Early cinema is a wonderful exploration of comedy, melodrama, spectacle and social commentary; images were never more important to the cinema. This course will examine the international history of film from its origins through the transformations that accompanied the development of sound film. The goal is to awaken an understanding of the historical use of film form. Each week we will view a film, discuss its place in film history, as well as social history, and its form of expression (looking closely at montage, set design, acting styles, dialogue and narration). We will look at issues of industry and audience and representations of gender, race and political change. Students will learn how to see films with a greater depth of visual understanding. Films to be screened include great works of Chaplin, Keaton, Griffith, Eisenstein, Abel Gance, Fritz Lang, and other directors whose talent shaped the development of cinema; we will also examine the role of actors and actresses, screenwriters, designers and producers in shaping the history of film.

Course Requirements: One paper of 8–10 pages, using historical analysis of film, and short answer exams on readings, lecture material and scenes from films. Participation in class discussion and an oral presentation will also be required. Active attendence is mandatory at screenings and class sessions.

Instructor Information:

Maureen Turim
Office: 4330 TUR 392-1060, ext 258

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ENG 4015

Psychological Approaches to Literature

Peter L. Rudnytsky

This course will provide students with an introduction to psychoanalytic theory and its applications to literary study.

Course Requirements:

Psychoanalytic readings will be drawn from Freud (Analysis of a Phobia in a Five-Year-Old Boy) Klein, Lacan, Winnicott, and Bowlby. The literary texts will be Sophocles’ Oedipus the King, Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, Gottfried von Strassburg’s Tristan, Shakespeare’s Othello, Wilde’s Picture of Dorian Gray, and Shelley’s Frankenstein.

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ENG 4110 Animation and Comics (Tentative Description)

Don Ault

This experimental course will provide:

The class will meet two periods each day, three days a week, which should provide a time-format that will work for screening cartoons and slides and discussing them the same day. The format needs to be kept open-ended throughout the semester.

A few of the specific issues to be addressed:

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ENG 4110

The Science Fiction Film

Roger Beebe

The connection between science fiction and the cinema was established very early in the history of motion pictures with the trick films of movie pioneer Georges Meliès (Trip to the Moon). This course is designed to follow the evolution of this genre from the inception of cinema through its various realizations such as European sf in the 20s (Metropolis, The Crazy Ray), the “Golden Age” of 50s Hollywood (Forbidden Planet, Invasion of the Body Snatchers), its reinvigoration in the late 60s/early 70s (2001, A Clockwork Orange, Planet of the Apes), and the modern sci-fi film (the Alien trilogy, the Terminator films, Jurassic Park). We will also explore other moments in science fiction cinema such as avant-garde sci-fi (Dog Star Man, Tribulation 99) and Russian variations on the genre (Solaris, Stalker). As this diverse list suggests, the aim of this course will not be to construct a simple monolithic history of the science fiction film, but rather will be to examine how these various manifestations make use of the central concepts of the sci-fi genre such as technophobia, utopias and dystopias, social allegory, rationality versus chaos, the foreign (the “alien”), etc. We will also examine the recent wave of feminist writings on the science fiction film and their relation to the cinematic production in the 80s and 90s.

Readings will include Annette Kuhn, ed., Alien Zone: Cultural Theory and Contemporary Science Fiction Cinema (London and New York: Verso, 1990) and Vivian Sobchack, Screening Space: The American Science Fiction Film (New York: Ungar, 1993) as well as numerous other essays and selections from longer works.

There will be three written assignments in the course (two 3–5 pages, one 5–7) in which you will use the tools arrived at through our discussion of the reading assignments to perform your own analyses of science fiction films.

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ENG 4133 Scriptwriting

Julian Smith

Prerequisite: Any one of the following: ENG 2300, ENG 3113, ENG 3115, ENG 3121, ENG 3122, or permission of the instructor.

Course Description: While primarly intended to give you training in the discipline of writing a screenplay for a feature-length theatrical movie intended for a mainstream mass audience, this course will also study the role of the scriptwriter and the screenplay within the evolution of individual narrative films. You will be expected to develop an original and WORKABLE idea for a screenplay – or to adapt a novel chosen by the instructor.

Close attention will be given to the scriptwriter’s need to adhere to the rules and conventions of screenplay format and logic.

Writing Assignments: You will be required to do a substantial amount of writing and revising in this course. By the end of the semester, you are expected to turn in AT LEAST the first first or the setup (twenty-five to thirty pages) plus the last scene or sequence of scenes (five to ten pages) of your screenplay. Extra-credit will go to those who turn in an entire screenplay of 90–120 pages.

Film Viewings: This course involves seeing and studying one feature film each week. You will be expected to see a new film off-campus some weeks; other weeks, we will see a film together in class and I will comment on structure and plotting DURING the screening. Please do not take this course if you like to consume movies in silence.

Conferences: You are expected to meet on a regular basis with the instructor to discuss your work.

Required Texts: Kristin Thompson’s Storytelling in the New Hollywood; a recent paperback bestseller (to be announced).

Othere Readings: There will be many screenplays and books on scriptwriting on reserve.

Grading: Your final grade will be based on all work over the course of the semester, including class participation; there will not be a final exam.

Special Note: Please do not register for this course if you are registered for my section of ENG 3113.

Instructor: J. Smith (Tur 4318; 392 6650, ext 248); smithj@english.ufl.edu

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ENG 4136

Film and Video Production: Editing

Roger Beebe

This course will explore the history, theory, and practice of editing through screenings, readings, and hands-on production work. These three facets will be interconnected in the course as students produce short projects which reflect and inflect their understanding of the history and theory of editing. The historical component will explore the evolution of editing from the early single shot films of Edison and the Lumiere brothers and the innovations of Edwin S. Porter and D.W. Griffith through to contemporary experimental works (Craig Baldwin, Alan Berliner) and commercial ones (MTV). The theoretical component will explore the varied approaches to editing including readings by the first theorists (Eisenstein, Bazin) to contemporary thinkers (Walter Murch, Paul Willemen) as well as more general meditations on the culture of the cut (Fredric Jameson). In the practical component, students will edit a series of short found footage projects designed to make them to re-think their own approaches to and hopefully to develop their own theories of editing. While no previous editing experience is necessary, the course will require students to quickly learn to use Final Cut Pro (a non-linear editing program for the Mac), so familiarity with Macs will be a great asset.

The assignments for the course will be a series of four short video pieces (less than 3 minutes each) that will incrementally explore the basic elements of editing. Each assignment will also be coupled with a short paper in which the student explains the theory behind their work.

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ENG 4139

Networks

Terry Harpold

We will investigate the figure of the “network” (the matrix, the trellis, the skein, the web, etc.) as a scheme for representing the technical, cultural, and political-economic fields of the digital sign. What accounts for the near-ubiquity of this figure in the popular discourses of new media? What social and political-economic forms does it presuppose? What models of cognition and knowledge does it favor? What aesthetic and artistic practices does it engender? Our discussions will include historical investigation of selected instances of this figure (e.g., scholastic mnemonic devices, early modern cartography, network representations of memory and learning from cognitive science and artificial intelligence), but the course will focus primarily on instances of the “network” in discourses of computer-based practices of writing, representation, and exchange.

Course requirements include: two research papers. This class will make regular use of the Networked Writing Environment (NWE) and other new media facilities in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. Students should have at least a basic familiarity with new media tools and environments (the WWW, standalone multimedia, computer games, etc.)

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ENG 4905

Independent Study

Faculty Member of Choice

An Independent Study course may be taken for 1 to 3 credit hours and will count as credit toward the English major. This course may be repeated with a change of topic up to a maximum of 9 credits.

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.

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ENG 4936

Honors Seminar: Race(ing) Through the Nineteenth Century

Malini Johar Schueller

Note: Honors Seminars require an upper-division GPA of 3.5 or above.

This course will focus on race as a signifier in nineteenth-century U.S. literature and culture. Taking race to be an ever-changing and adaptive social construct, we will focus both on the fluidity and mobility of racial categories, as well as their disciplinary powers. We will also examine the intersections between the discourses of race and sexuality and see how the two are mutually constitutive. Throughout the course, we will deal with some of the questions raised by the concept of race: What are the problems and gains of racial identity politics? How do questions of race and gender intersect/collide? What is the difference between the politics of race and ethnicity? By drawing on the diverse deployments of race in legal, literary, anthropological, and critical texts, this course will emphasize the importance of race in the reading of cultural texts as well as map some of the racial formations in the nineteenth century cultural imaginary. The course will focus on four aspects of race: racial mobilities, whiteness, race and sexuality, and blackface.

Possible Texts:

Course Requirements:

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ENG 4936

Honors Seminar: Masculinities in Crisis in Victorian Britain and Today

Pam Gilbert

Honors Seminars require an upper-division gpa of 3.5 or above.

We often think of the Nineteenth century as a time when “The Woman Question” was a central cultural issue, and this is true. Yet, just as our ideas about feminine identity are profoundly influenced by developments in this period, so are our understandings of masculine identity, defined in part against those emerging constructions of femininity. Victorian authors, scientists and cultural analysts devoted a good deal of time and print to anxious analyses of “manliness” and “manhood,” perceived to be in need of redefinition.

Masculinity has again been receiving much critical attention lately, by gender theorists, literary and historical scholars, and the popular press. Susan Faludi and other commentators speak of a crisis in contemporary masculinity, and their analyses are sufficiently appealing to a large audience that Newsweek recently devoted a cover to the question. I would like to take a few weeks at the beginning of the term to pay some attention to this emerging (or re-emerging) concern with masculinity, looking both at some recent theoretical work and at the popular press. What are the stakes of these definitions? What have we come to believe “masculinity” is and why are we concerned with it now?

Having taken the time to situate ourselves in our own context, we can then perhaps begin to think about the way Victorian formulations of gender can be understood in the context of a “history of the present.” The remainder of the course will focus on Victorian genders with a special emphasis on masculinities, in the novel. Additionally, we will spend time reading and thinking about secondary works which interrogate and historicize our principal terms. New definitions of masculinity emerged in Victorian Britain as class mobility, industrialization and the emergence of the British Empire redefined male roles and destabilized older identities. These masculinities, as they were constructed in the late 18th through the mid-nineteenth century, have become central to twentieth century modernity and constructions of subjectivity in the West.

Authors may include Carlyle, Gaskell, Kingsley, Hughes, Braddon, Pater, Darwin, Meredith, Wilde, Haggard. Critical authors working on the Victorian period may include James Eli Adams and Eve Sedgwick, among others. We will also read some current materials – an excerpt from Faludi, for example, and current critical work on the men’s movement. Class discussion will be tailored to (and by) the class members, so you if need to know more about something, please ask. I would also like to emphasize that, although the course will focus on masculinity, that topic cannot be discussed without reference to female identity, class, and sexuality, among other issues. In short, I expect discussion to be rather wide-ranging.

Tentative requirements:

Requirements include regular attendance and substantive participation in discussion, three short papers or one short and one long paper (I’ll finalize this requirement before class begins), individual presentations, and weekly or bi-weekly reading quizzes.

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ENG 4940

Internship

Undergraduate Coordinator

Students must have completed at least 12 hours of 3000- to 4000-level English courses.

For students who want to gain experience in an English-related field. Students must find a business that will provide adequate supervision by a delegated authority in an appropriate work area. An initial description of the position from the intern, an outline of the intern’s duties on the letterhead of the business, a final summary from the intern discussing the merits of the position, and a final evaluation from the business offering the intership are required. S/U option only. May be taken for 1 to 3 credit hours, depending on the number of hours worked during the week. See undergraduate academic advising in the English department for the guidelines.

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ENG 4953

Department Seminar–Shakespeare’s Political Plays

Peter L. Rudnytsky

Department Seminars are for ENGLISH MAJORS ONLY who have completed a minimum of 9 hours of English courses, level 3000–4000.

Shakespeare’s political plays. The seminar focus on Shakespeare’s two cycles of English history plays, as well as King John, Julius Caesar, Coriolanus, and Henry VIII. Some attention will be given to background and criticism, but our main concern will be with a close reading of the plays themselves. Requirements include in-class reports and a substantial seminar paper.

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ENG 4953

Department Seminar–Thomas Hardy: Mnemotechnics, Materiality, and the Textual Archive

Julian Wolfreys

Department Seminars are for ENGLISH MAJORS ONLY who have completed a minimum of 9 hours of English courses, level 3000–4000.

While the critical reception of Thomas Hardy has varied throughout the twentieth century, there has been an insistent and recurrent sense that his writing is in some manner flawed. Resisting the hitherto dominant aesthetic-organic approach to Hardy’s writing, we will attempt to examine Hardy’s texts on their own terms, rather than by imposing presupposed ideas of what constitutes the novel, the short story, ’good writing’, and so on. Hardy’s fictions and poetry demand that we rethink our positions as readers to the materiality of the text and that we do so, moreover, in the broader context of thinking we have a sense of what fiction or the novel might look like in the last thirty years of the nineteenth century.

This course, will, then, propose a study of Hardy’s writing (novels, short stories and poetry) as an exemplary transitional mode of experimental writing between realism and modernism, placing it in various cultural, historial, philosophical and ideological contexts. At the same time, in order to address other ways of reading Hardy while identifying those aspects of Hardy’s text which disturb aesthetic and formalist critical assessments (and the ideological and epistemological grounds on which such assessments are based), we will also look at recent critical and theoretical approaches to Hardy, as well as the theoretical issues which Hardy’s writing appears to raise, thereby anticipating issues with which much current critical discourse concerns itself. We will also consider the issues addressed through film and TV adaptation of Hardy.

Course Reading:

We will attempt to read as much of Hardy as possible. While focussing for the most part on the novels, we will also sample his short stories and poetry, in order to consider how the author handles persistent interests in different ways, within different genres. Reading will be taken from:

There will also be a photocopy packet and various handouts throughout the semester.

Course Requirements:

There is no final exam.

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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) and one copy of the thesis (30 to 50 pages) must be delivered to the CLAS Academic Advising Center on Fletcher Road at least 10 days before graduation.

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ENL 3112

The English Novel: Eighteenth Century

Mel New

We will be reading 8 fictions written between 1720 and 1820, against a background provided by John Milton’s Paradise Lost (which we will read serially during the course). The books to be read include:

This is not a course for anyone who doesn’t like to read – several of the books are long, and none of them can be considered easy reading, except perhaps The Monk, which is a gothic horror story filled with rape and incest and other preoccupations of modern times. On the other hand, if you like to read (some English majors do), there is no better collection of writers than those who discovered the infinite possibilities of the long narrative during the eighteenth century – and no better introduction to the reading of all fiction than that of its earliest moments in England. In order to keep the class up with its reading, there will be daily quizzes accounting for 40% of the grade; there will also be written assignments.

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ENL 3132

The English Novel: Twentieth Century

R. Brandon Kershner

The course is a survey of the development of the twentieth-century “British” novel (including Ireland) through the present. The first half of the course will stress the arrival of modernism in the novel and the particular influence of literary impressionism; the second will explore lesser-known novelists, especially women, who are often excluded from surveys. We will also examine the question of postmodernism in the novel.

Requirements include two short essays (roughly eight typed pages in length). The subject of the first paper will be point of view in one of the authors we read before the midterm; the subject of the second will be open, but it must concern the work of one of the novelists we are reading after the midterm. There will be a midterm and a final exam, both including objective and essay parts, but the objective part of the final will not be cumulative. Papers and exams count equally toward your grade. Depending upon the class’s demonstrated preparedness, there may be occasional quizzes, each counting 1/4 of a paper grade. An additional grade, between C and A, will reflect your class participation.

Books may include:

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ENL 3230

The Age of Dryden and Pope

Brian McCrea

Course Description:

We will read plays, poems, and prose fiction by British authors of the second half of the seventeenth and first half of the eighteenth centuries. While we will study the individual works in considerable detail, we also will establish backgrounds (aesthetic, political, religious) from which those works emerge. In particular, we will attend to the growing social and literary power of what we today call the middle class and to a corresponding diminution of aristocratic/patriarchal authority.

Students will write two papers (6–8 pages each). They also will write briefly at the opening or closing of most class sessions, responding to questions about the reading or about the class itself. The course concludes with a two-part final examination. Part 1 (Identification and Short Answer) will be based upon my lectures. Part 2 (Essay) will ask for a comprehensive response to one of three questions about the Age. Participation in class discussions is expected. Students who have difficulty speaking in class should see me about other options.

Books (available at Goering’s Books and Bagels, 1717 N.W. 1st Avenue):

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ENL 3241

The Romantic Period

Richard Brantley

This course is a survey of such major British Romantic writers as William Blake, William Wordsworth, Samuel Taylor Coleridge, Percy Bysshe Shelley, John Keats, George Gordon, Lord Byron, Mary Wollstonecraft, Dorothy Wordsworth, Mary Shelley, and Felicia Hemans. The course emphasizes a historical, interdisciplinary approach.

Text: English Romantic Writers (anthology) David Perkins

Requirements: Two 10pp papers (25% each) are required, one near mid-semester and one toward the end. Late papers are penalized.

Attendance is required.

Directions for the midterm (25% of the grade) and the noncumulative final (25% of the grade) read as follows: “Identify the following fifteen passages (author and title). Comment on four. Take class discussion into account and go beyond it.”

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ENL 3241

Early British Romanticism

Judith W. Page

This course will focus on selected authors from the first generation of British Romantic Writers, including, among others:

We will discuss various questions in literature and culture from the 1780s until around 1814, including the relationship between literary and popular culture (particularly gothic and folk traditions), revolutions in politics and in poetic genres and styles, problems of canon formation, as well as questions of gender and secuality. Students will be expected to read the texts closely and carefully.

Text: British Literature 1780–1830, ed. Mellor and Matlock

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ENL 4220

Renaissance Literature: Elizabethan Prose

Jack Perlette

The course will concentrate on prose fictions written and/or published during the reign on Elizabeth I (1559–1603). Specifically, we will focus on the interplay between text and society in terms of the textual production and/or subversion of ideologies of gender and of status and class. My goal is to provide a course useful not only to students interested in the Renaissance, but also for those interested more generally in narrative fiction and ideological critique, in feminist/gender approaches, and in the relationship of literature to society.

Tentative Readings:

Requirements:

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ENL 4273

Twentieth-Century British Literature: Literature, Culture, and Empire

Phil Wegner

“What do they know of cricket who only cricket know?” – C. L. R. James, Beyond a Boundary

This course will explore in some detail the rich and intricate relationship between developments in twentieth century British literature and the changing fortunes of British imperial and colonial power. Indeed, the major premise of the course is that any study of modern British literature remains incomplete that does not take into account the questions raised by empire – or, to paraphrase C. L. R. James, one of the century’s most important critics of empire, they “know” very little about twentieth-century British literature “who only twentieth-century British literature know.” Taking this idea as our starting point, we shall investigate both how the history of empire inscribes itself within the formal and thematic concerns of twentieth-century literature and culture, and the ways that these texts attempt to make sense of such a history. The course will be divided into two sections, the first, focusing on the relationships between empire and some of the monumental works of British modernism; and the second, on literary responses in a variety of works and forms to the “end” of formal empire. Throughout the semester too we will be interrogating the question of what constitutes “British” literature in a global imperial age. Among the issues we shall explore are the various “myths” about the self and the other found in these works; the unique representational problems posed by the institution, near the turn of the century, of a global imperial network; the response to empire found in the formal experiments of literary modernism; the development of new popular genres (the adventure story, the spy novel, and science fiction) as part of an effort to map empire; the gendering of the subjects of empire; the relationship between imperial experience, decolonization, and culture; various re-tellings of imperial history from the perspective of the former colonial periphery; and the resounding echoes of these histories in our own present.

The majority of our discussion will focus on twentieth century novels, and include many of the following:

We will also view the films Black Narcissus and Sammy and Rosie Get Laid.

Requirements for the course will include regular attendance, participation in class discussion, and a series of formal written papers.

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ENL 4311

Chaucer

James Paxson

This course will familiarize students with the major narrative poetry of Chaucer. We will devote most of our study to several of The Canterbury Tales and to Chaucer’s great romance, Troilus and Criseyde. We will also examine Chaucer’s long allegorical poem, The House of Fame. Students will learn to read Chaucer’s Middle English, and they will be introduced to the principal methodological issues constitutive of contemporary Chaucer studies. That is, they will investigate how Chaucer studies incorporate modern critical theory – especially involving issues of narrative complexity, figurative discourse, and the poetic representation of gender. Particular focus will fall upon the issue of subjectivity, since Chaucer lays claim to being the first major author in English to cultivate the poetics of the subjective, the personal, the psychologically interior. Class meetings will include lectures and discussion.

Course Work (with final grade percentages):

Required Texts (available at Goering’s Bagel Land Textbook Annex):

Requirements and Policies:

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ENL 4333

Shakespeare

Robert Thomson

This course will involve a close study of a dozen or so of the plays and a number of readings from the poems and elsewhere. Emphasis will be laid upon the problem stating/solving/mediating nature of the dramas. This will necessitate a close reading of the texts; a recognition of the dramatic and verbal ironies that abound; close attention to the paradoxes and ambiguities which motivate the actions and observation of the stark oppositions which are continually reiterated.

We will be led into a contextual study of both the world within and the world without the Elizabethan theatre, with its concern for an orderliness and its doubts and confusions as the new seventeenth century learning questioned and undermined the values and socio-political/religious assumptions of its society. We may then come to appreciate how these great plays and poems still speak to us with immediacy after a span of nearly four hundred years.

I intend to spend time with the following plays and in addition may spare more than a passing glance at one or two others:

Text: The Complete Signet Shakespeare

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ENL 4333

Shakespeare: Doing It

Sid Homan

We learn about Shakespeare and his theatre by “doing it” – that is, staging scenes from his plays. No experience in theatre or acting is required. Assessment of your work is based on intention, not the polish of the performance, and in this course Mechanical Engineering majors have done as well as Theatre majors, who have done no better than English majors. The principle behind the course is that Shakespeare plays were meant for the stage, meant for performance, and that such performance involves not just the text but the subtext (what the character is thinking or feeling), movement, blocking (the stage picture), gesture, all sorts of physical, temporal, and spatial dimensions that, together with the text, the dialogue, constitute the “real” text. Students rehearse and then perform scenes with a partner, then write papers assessing the entire experience. Thus, we will “do” Hamlet, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Macbeth, Much Ado about Nothing, Othello, Twelfth Night, and – to provide a perspective on Shakespeare – Stoppard’s Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead.

Students will also be involved with the production of Letters to the Editor which I will be directing at the Acrosstown Repertory Theatre.

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LIN 3680

Modern English Structure

Roger Thompson

Visit the following site to view the syllabus: LIN3680 syllabus.

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LIT 3031

Studies in Poetry

Chris Snodgrass

[This course will help fulfill the requirements for a number of the curriculum “tracks” for a department major, including but not limited to the British Literature, British and American Literature, American Literature, and Poetry tracks. It is also strongly recommended for anyone who might consider going to graduate school in English, as well as anyone who just wants to understand about “the poetic,” in many ways the foundation of all artistic feeling.]

If human history and modern psychology have taught us anything, it is that the poetic impulse – our need to visualize, to fictionalize, to play with different paradigms of reality – has always existed at the root of the human experience. This course will study in detail primarily lyric poetry, in order to understand the technical interrelationships between poetic structure and meaning and the varied and complex ways by which human “themes” and reactions emerg – in short, what poems mean and how they come to mean what they mean. On occasion we will try to probe the assumptions which underlie the works of art – the “why’s” implicit in the artists’ approaches to their themes as well as the themes themselves.

Prior training in studying and analyzing poetry is not required. If you don’t know much about poetry now, this course will change that. By the end of the term you will learn:

  1. a solid general knowledge of poetic devices, metrical forms, and other elements of poetics;
  2. the ability to do a meticulously detailed and discerning analysis of a poem, showing a clear understanding of how the specifics of language, form, and structure create meaning; and
  3. the ability to draw out and deal intelligently with whatever larger thematic patterns or philosophical issues you find in the poems of different cultures and historical periods.

Basis for Final Grade:

C. Snodgrass; 4336 Turlington, 392-6650, ext. 262; 376-8362; snod@english.ufl.edu

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LIT 3041

Studies in Drama: Citizen Comedy and Domestic Tragedy in the Age of Shakespeare

Robert Thomson

A study of a group of plays unified by being set in the contemporary London and environs of their authors in the late sixteenth century or the opening decades of the seventeenth century. The main focus will be upon the texts and their social, political, historical and cultural contexts.

It has been suggested that City Comedy (however we define it) moved to the centre of the Elizabethan Stage when Londoners started to reflect upon their new social roles and their urban setting. Social mobility, pretensions, hypocrisy, greed, pathos, etc., all arose in the midst of the new middle class society of trade and commerce and gave substance to these plays, as did the threatened state of an increasingly impoverished and newly dependent gentry.

The plays to be studied will be:

Two essays will be set (ca. 2000 words) and in addition there will be a number of in-class tests and oral reports. There will be no final exam.

Class participation will be expected and rewarded.

Absences – I intend to make periodic register checks – will be penalised, as will late papers.

Plagiarism which is detected will result in a failing grade for the course.

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LIT 3173

Jewish Literature: Modern Fiction

Mel New

THIS COURSE IS CROSS LISTED WITH JEWISH STUDIES: JST 3920 SECT. 0229.

This course will explore an eclectic gathering of European Jewish writers of the last century – and one American. The course is without an agenda, but is focussed on the literary response to being Jewish from about 1925–1945 – and the aftermath; it is not a course in Jewish instruction, not a course in “Fiddler on the Roof” type of Jewish writing, not a course for those who use ethnic studies to pad their grade-point average. It is a course for those seriously interested in some fine and highly thoughtful writing about what it means to be Jewish in the heart of a culture that finds Jewishness a strange – even objectionable – way to exist in modern times. The authors include many unfamiliar names, Joseph (not Philip) Roth, Bruno Schulz, Israel Rabon, Danilo Kis, Natalia Ginzberg, Jiri Weil, and Primo Levi; the American we will read is Cynthia Ozick. There will be daily quizzes to ensure that students keep up daily with the assigned readings; and other written work.

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LIT 3374

The Bible as Literature

Richard Brantley

The course will approach the Hebrew Scriptures according to such genres as narrative, prophecy, poetry, and wisdom literature. The emphasis will be formalistic, thematic, and contextual. The text will be the New Revised Standard Version. Instructions for the midterm and final will read as follows: “Identify the following fifteen passages. Comment on four. Take class discussion into account and go beyond it.” The 6,000-word journal (about twenty pages)is presented in two installments of 3,000 words each. Journal entries may vary in length. They may range along a continuum, with subjective, creative responses at one end, and expository responses at the other.

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LIT 3383

Women’s Poetry and Twentieth-Century Culture

Marsha Bryant

The very term “woman poet” continues to be both necessary and problematic as we enter a new century. On the one hand, it marks a necessary emergence from the nineteenth-century idea of the “poetess,” which confined women’s poetry to the realms of sentimental verse and domesticity. On the other hand, it has fostered a problematic model of competing literary traditions in which gender attaches only the feminine side; thus “women’s poetry” becomes a marginal supplement to poetic tradition. Grounded in this vexed history, the course seeks to move discussions of women’s poetry beyond the impasse of canonical hierarchies by framing it within a larger cultural matrix–one which includes modernism, advertising, literary anthologies, music, archaeology, and child care manuals. Women are positioned differently in culture than men, so feminist frameworks will remain crucial for our discussions.

Here are proposed units for the course; we’ll do 6–7 of them:

Assignments will include a panel presentation, a response to one of the critical/theoretical essays in our packet, a paper on one poet, a paper assessing one women’s poetry anthology, and an essay exam.

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LIT 3383

British Women Novelists: From Burney to Woolf

Judith W. Page

Students will study representative novels from the late 18th century through the early 20th century. We will read the six novels (some of them quite long novels!) closely and carefully, as well as critical and theoretical material on women and fiction. We will consider the kinds of stories that women tell, the backgrounds and experiences of women writers, and the development of a women’s tradition in British fiction. We will be interested in different historical and cultural contexts, as well as in style, genre, and narrative technique. Students will be expected to come to class having read the assigned pages carefully. The novels include the following:

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LIT 3400

The Book as Technology and Trope

Terry Harpold

We will review the 2000-year evolution of the form of the book most familiar to modern readers – the codex (folded sheets stitched into volumes) – and the changes in reading and writing practices that accompanied its evolution. We will investigate formal, typographic, and mechanical-material traditions of the book, with special attention to “eccentric” forms (examples: the artists book and some traditions of children’s books). These investigations will prepare the way for the main threads of inquiry in the second half of the course: 1) What is the “future” of the book in an age of digital text, e-books, and distributed – networked multimedia? (A related question: what lies behind the anxious and ecstatic futurologies of the book typical of this moment?); 2) What are the lessons of the codex form (as a material, historically-grounded practice) for the design, use, and aesthetic strategies of emerging forms and practices of new media?

Course requirements include: infrequent reading quizzes; a take-home midterm exam; a paper engineering project; a final research paper. In the paper engineering project, students will construct simple pop-up books and present them in class as examples of the material and mechanical possibilities of the codex form. Though certainly helpful, prior familiarity with new media tools and environments (the WWW, standalone multimedia, computer games, e-books, etc.) is not required.

Detailed syllabus for LIT 3400, Fall 2001

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LIT 4320

Introduction to Folklore

Robert Thomson

This is in every sense an introductory course; I assume no knowledge on your part of either the materials or the study of folklore though of course many of you will have at least an inkling of what is intended here. By the term “folklore” I mean firstly the materials that are subsumed within the many diverse activities of folklore performance including narratives in the form of epics, ballads, folksongs, folktales, legends, myths and folk dramas as well as usages of idiosyncratic verbal play such as riddles and rhymes and also proverbs, charms and other verbal utterances associated with superstitious practices and beliefs. All of these forms, by their usage within a folk group, impose a distinctive character upon that group. They may function as both a reflection and constant reinforcement of the manners and mores of a group. However, because it is essentially an unwritten culture, folklore is constantly adaptable to change even though it may, paradoxically, resist alteration.

The term “folklore” also has a second usage; it encompasses the discipline of the study of folklore materials. And so our course will attempt to cover both an introduction to the materials of folklore and also a wide ranging though necessarily brief examination of the many and various methodologies and theoretical approaches which have arisen to explain the origins, nature, forms and meanings of folklore genres.

In the broadest terms, the syllabus may be divided into four (unequal) sections:

Texts:

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LIT 4333

Literature for Adolescents

James Haskins

Course Description:

The course will examine literature appropriate for adolescent and young adult audiences, with special emphasis on the sociopolitical and psychological interpretations of the various genres. Genres to be explored will include nonfiction, historical and modern fiction, and literature for the young-adult audience dealing with contemporary themes of interest, as well as the problem novel. Issues such as censorship, religious themes, intercultural and interracial dating, abortion, and substance abuse will be discussed. Group discussions will be emphasized, and individuals as well as groups of students will be assigned reports and asked to lead class discussions on authors and book topics.

Required Text: Kenneth L. Donelson and Alleen Pace Nilsen, Literature for Today’s Young Adults, 5th edition

Required Supplementary Readings:

Assignments:

Research Paper:

One research paper of 10–15 typed, double-spaced pages (topics to be cleared with me before beginning work). Any of the acknowledged, official styles may be used, i.e., MLA, APA, so long as you are consistent in your use of it. Papers are due in the English Department office no later than 4:00 PM on the Friday of “dead week.” A box with my name and course number will be available there. Do not put papers under my office door.

Grading: Your grade for this course will be calculated as follows:

Office Hours: Wednesdays 5th period or before/after class on Tuesdays and Thursdays.

Contact Info:Office location: Turlington, 4326
Office phone: 392-5429
Home phone: 378-4661 (Calls will be accepted on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays, 4:00 PM–7:00 PM, and not at other times)
E-mail: jhaskins@english.ufl.edu

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LIT 4333

Literature for Adolescents

Kenneth Kidd

Adolescent literature did not appear for the first time in the 1960s, with the advent of authors like Judy Blume and Louise Fitzhugh who tackled divorce, sexuality, and generic teen angst. The term “adolescence” descends from Latin, and the earliest entries in the Oxford English Dictionary date from the fourteenth century. Shakespeare describes the “seven ages” of mankind; picaresque heroes and heroines like Gil Blas and Moll Flanders struggle to survive the vicissitudes of youth and poverty. As the nineteenth century unfolded, however, new genres dramatized the transition from childhood into adolescence, and glorified adolescence as a distinct and crucial period of development. By the end of the century, many “adult” novelists were devoting their attention to (if not quite writing for) adolescents; representative titles include Dostoevski’s The Adolescent (1874) and Henry James’ What Maisie Knew (1897). Such texts emerged alongside clinical-pedagogical literature about adolescence – e.g., Granville Stanley Hall’s two volume Adolescence: Its Psychology and Its Relations to Physiology, Anthropology, Sociology, Sex, Crime, Religion, and Education (1904). Literature by adolescents also began to appear by the century’s end; the first adolescent diary written for publication was apparently Marie Bashkirtseff’s journal (1887).

With this history in mind, this course examines literature for, by, and about adolescents from the late nineteenth century to the present. We’ll concentrate on young adult literature from the 1960s to the 1990s, but we will read and discuss it in light of these earlier narrative traditions. We’ll be particularly concerned with the twentieth century’s reinvention of the nineteenth century adolescent. The modern teen is of course intimately connected to material culture; being a teenager means watching tv, driving cars, and buying lots of cool stuff. It also means being a social “problem,” and many of our selections are problem novels in the “new realism” mode.

The course will be conducted as a seminar and participation is required.

Texts: Check with me before you buy books, since I’ll be making final selections later on.

Requirements:

Your grade will be determined by your writing and participation, and, of course, I’ll work closely with you.

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LIT 4334

The Golden Age of Children’s Literature

Patricia Craddock

Visit Dr. Craddock’s homepage to view this course description: Golden Age of Children’s Literature.

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LIT 4483

Introduction to Cultural Studies

Phil Wegner

The central aim of this course is to introduce you to the rich and exciting interdisciplinary field of investigation known as cultural studies. During the course of the semester, we will address the historical and intellectual roots of cultural studies, explore its connections to the practices of literary and narrative analysis, map out some of its particular objects of study, and examine the methodologies it offers for studying popular culture and everyday life. In order to structure and situate our investigation, we will look at a diverse range of crucial essays that have contributed to the development of cultural studies, its practices, methodologies, and particular concerns. After a brief discussion of some foundational concepts – including everyday life, mass media, the culture industry, and the idea of culture(s) itself – our explorations will cluster around a series of crucial topics, including consumption, media, ideology and critique, experience and identity, globalization, and, finally, the making and politics of cultural space. In addition, we will take up the question of “interdisciplinary” intellectual work itself: what is it? how is it possible? and what are its politics and potentialities?

Most of our readings will be in essays collected in a course pack, and will include work by the following:

We will also read two short influential books: Roland Barthes, Mythologies, and Dick Hebdige, Subculture: The Meaning of Style.

Note: while we will be reading essays that touch on a wide range of cultural forms and practices – including film, advertising, romance novels, popular music, architecture, Disney’s worlds, and performance – this is a course in cultural studies theories and methodologies, and hence we will not be engaging with these forms directly in class (although, I would like to try and schedule related outside film viewings and other events if student interest and demand merits).

Students will be expected to participate in class discussion, keep a regular journal of reflections upon the readings, and to produce a series of more formal essays that demonstrate their familiarity with the course readings and discussions. The final paper will give you the opportunity to become a cultural studies scholar in your own right: you will chose your object of study, explain why it is of interest, place it in the context of our readings, and do any other independent research – archival, scholarly, or ethnographic – you require.

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LIT 4930

Writing Biographical Literature

James Haskins

Course Description:

The course will provide an overview of biographical literature’s various styles and approaches and of the research methods used to gather biographical information. A broad range of readings will be assigned, as will relevant television programs. Biographical literature discussed will include the first-person autobiography, “as told to” and “written with” autobiographies, and third-person narratives. Various historical, political, and psychological approaches will be examined, as well as straight, chronological narratives versus impressionistic or event-based frameworks.

Required Readings:

Assignments: There will be six written assignments: two based on interviews and interviewing techniques; three based on biographies; and one biography term paper. Additionally, there will be assigned oral reports. All students, whether as individuals or in groups, will be assigned classroom reports.

Written Assignments on Interviews:

  1. Research two examples of interviews by a print journalist or journalists: one with a well-known politician, actor, or artist; and one with a writer. Present an oral report on your research to the class, and write a paper comparing and contrasting the two interviews.
  2. Watch any interview with a writer by a television journalist, e.g. Ted Koppel, Charlie Rose, “Book Notes” on C-Span, etc. Do your own independent research on the journalist and compare and contrast his or her approach to that taken in other sources. Present your findings in both an oral classroom presentation and in a written report.

Written Assignments on Print Biographies: Three assignments to be selected.

Research Paper: One research paper of 10–15 typed, double-spaced pages (subjects to be cleared with me before beginning work). Any of the acknowledged, official styles may be used, i.e., MLA, APA, so long as you are consistent in your use of it. Papers are due in the English Department office no later than 4:00 PM on the Friday of “dead week.” A box with my name and course number will be available there. Do not put papers under my office door.

Grading: Your grade for this course will be calculated as follows:

Office Hours: Wednesdays 5th period or before/after class on Tuesdays and Thursdays.

Contact Info:

Office location: Turlington, 4326
Office phone: 392-5429
Home phone: 378-4661 (Calls will be accepted on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays, 4:00 PM – 7:00 PM, and not at other times)
E-mail: jhaskins@english.ufl.edu

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LIT 4930

Creative Writing and the Computer: the future of fiction: hypertext and creative writing

Stephanie Smith

Visit Professor S. Smith’s webpage Creative Writing Online.

This course is designed as a serious but also beginner’s fiction writing workshop, but we are also dedicated to exploring the possibilities of the internet as a site of creative work. what will it mean, to have our creative works go online?

All forms, styles, genres and ambitions are welcome, as long as the participants will agree to the following basic ground rules:

  1. Writers write.
  2. Writers read.

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LIT 4930

Queer Theory: Culture and Politics

Kim Emery

A general introduction to major concerns, methodologies, and texts in queer theory, this course also seeks to illuminate the theoretical insights of queer cultural work (including that undertaken by such activist groups as Gran Fury, ACT UP, Queer Nation, and the Lesbian Avengers, as well as that performed by individual artists, film makers, teachers, creative writers, journalists, musicians, politicians, and others). The semester’s work will be organized around investigation of five broadly defined sites of cultural engagement:

  1. The Body Politic
  2. Circuits of Exchange
  3. AIDS Activism
  4. Sex and Representation
  5. Gendered Identity.

Students will be encouraged to explore the applicability of various theoretical paradigms and approaches to the concerns of queer cultural politics and to examine the usefulness of queer theoretical frames to the analysis of cultural politics more generally.

Required reading may include works by:

In addition, there will be a course packet of articles, plus 5 or 6 books.

Requirements:

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SPC 3605

Speechwriting

Ron Carpenter

Speechwriting is an advanced composition course wherein students acquire stylistic prowess by which their sentences have increased potential for memorability and quotability, ease and accuracy of comprehension, as well as overall persuasiveness. The course is called Speechwriting because models of eloquence to be imitated are in sentences of Abraham Lincoln, Franklin Roosevelt, John Kennedy, and Martin Luther King, Jr., for examples. Although you practice these stylistic skills while writing speeches, the acquired prowess is applicable in virtually any future communication endeavors, as speakers or writers, regardless of profession.

This course is not about supporting arguments and organizing them into broader discourse. If you seek those skills, other courses are more appropriate. This course is about how to pick the best words and arrange them in their best orders – within sentences – to achieve optimal impress of your ideas upon readers or listeners. These stylistic skills are practiced and perfected in drafts that you aloud among peers (and for me) during our “lab” periods. During “labs,” you should acquire a sense of how to achieve the final product desired at the semester end. Thus, present drafts when due; listen carefully to other students’ drafts, comparing yours with theirs; 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.

How a draft is presented, vocally and physically, has no bearing on your grade. Speechwriting is an advanced composition course, and drafts read aloud are bases of discussion by which students understand why some sentences are better than others. For initial and final drafts, I require word processing available in computer labs on campus (if you do not have your own computer). Revision on your disk is easier; spelling is accurate; and word lengths of drafts are known.

From past experience, I know that reasonably diligent students achieve some of the stylistic skills taught in this course. Final grades are higher, however, as you

  1. demonstrate refined prowess as the competent stylist on exams and in final drafts,
  2. understand course precepts derived from readings and lecture materials, as tested by three exams during the semester (the course has no final exam), and
  3. produce a final research paper about style as defined in this course (research paper options will be explained during a lecture relatively early in the semester and will require additional library reading).

Final grades are determined one-half by the average of your three exam scores and one-half by the quality of your final notebook with polished drafts of speeches and the research paper – all typed, double-spaced, and turned in during exam week at the time and date listed in the University Timetable as the course final exam period. The textbook for the course is Ronald H. Carpenter, Choosing Powerful Words: Eloquence that Works.

Although this is a writing course, I also am impressed – for purposes of grades – by how much you know about our subject. Please understand that Speechwriting is unlike virtually all other persuasive writing courses at UF, for the expertise and confidence in precepts being taught are derived from your instructor’s published research in four scholarly press books, several book chapters, and numerous journal articles (all of which inform my textbook). Furthermore, from my experience as a consultant for organizations outside UF (such as corporate executives, lawyers, civic leaders, public relations professionals, and officers attending the U.S. Naval War College), I know that skills taught in this course are useful in the “real” world. Thus, teaching you to be eloquent stylists gives me great personal satisfaction. For I can make positive changes in your behaviors as communicators. If you join me in this endeavor, which admittedly entails some substantial effort on your part, I promise you will acquire valuable skills that will be useful for the rest of your life, no matter what your later profession might be. The only prerequisite for the course is that you can write grammatical sentences that are punctuated correctly.

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SPC 4680

Rhetorical Criticism

Ron Carpenter

In an unfortunately inaccurate use of the word, “rhetoric” often is prefaced by the adjective “empty” to characterize what the “other person” says as illogical appeal in contradistinction to discourse which presumably “tells it like it is.” In an accurate and scholarly meaning of the word, however, rhetoric refers to the precepts utilized by someone who through discourse attempts to “adjust ideas to people and people to ideas.” Moreover, discourse intended to persuade takes many forms, from television commercials to radio commentary, film, some novels, and a wide range of speaking including, for examples, sermons, lawyers’ appeals to juries, civic rights oratory, and televised debates between candidates for President of the United States. Rhetorical criticism is the intellectual process of identifying and analyzing the elements by which persuasive discourse achieves its intended objectives (or fails to do so). Thus, the perceptive critic not only names the rhetorical factors at work in discourse but also engages in assessment with criteria such as effectiveness (both short and long term), appropriateness to the situation, or ethical considerations. Students in Rhetorical Criticism therefore will become more aware of why they respond to discourse as they do and, perhaps more importantly, acquire understanding of those elements of rhetoric which might be utilized in their own attempts in the future to persuade other people to attitudes and actions. In the present version of this course, the emphasis will be on discourse from the realm of presidential politics and military decision-making. We also will consider briefly some rhetorical elements in novels and film. Thus, we will start with the radio speeches of President Franklin Roosevelt along with those of his prominent detractors, Huey Long and Father Charles E. Coughlin. The latter two personalities will lead to a brief look at third-party candidates. After the advent of television, forms of political discourse worthy of attention include televised presidential debates (we will look closely at the precursor of them, the Nixon-Kennedy debates of 1960) and the public apology (such as the Nixon “Checkers” speech as well as Ted Kennedy’s after Chappaquiddick and the death of Mary Jo Kopechne), leading to a project about Bill Clinton. Another aspect of presidential discourse is crisis rhetoric, televised speeches responding to immediate threats (i.e., Kennedy’s about Russian missiles in Cuba), and we also will examine rhetoric on behalf of war (Douglas MacArthur about Korea, Richard Nixon and Lyndon Johnson about Vietnam, and Ronald Reagan about Lebanon and Grenada). The required text for the course is Halford Ross Ryan, Contemporary American Publick Discourse: A Collections of Speeches and Critical Essays, 3rd ed. (Prospect Heights, Illinois: Waveland Press, 1992). Because the attitudes and actions of Americans are influenced greatly by popular culture, the predispositions that persuaders typically appeal to will be examined in formats such as pertinent Hollywood films.

Students will be required to write 4-5 short papers (each 3-5 pages in length), which essentially summarize topics we have discussed in class or in group projects. Also required is a longer research paper (8-10 pages in length), and the topic for this project is to be determined in consultation with your professor in the course. Rhetorical criticism also has a “take-home” final exam. The final grade in the course is derived 1/3 from the “take-home” final exam, 1/3 from the research paper, and 1/3 from the average on your several short papers.