203, 209, 210, 211, & 220

By the end of each of these courses, students should be able to do the following:

  1. Read consciously and contextually to develop interpretation of texts
    1. Analyze textual details to develop an interpretation of the overall text
    2. Identify the generic features and structures of a text
    3. Identify and explain the relationships among writers, readers, genres, and contexts
  2. Demonstrate the ability to use English studies methodologies to think critically about language, texts, and experience
    1. Demonstrate development of deeper understanding of course concepts
    2. Form judgments about the assumptions or claims presented in the texts
    3. Make evidence-based arguments to support conclusions
    4. Analyze contemporary issues in language, texts, and experience based on English studies methodologies
  3. Write in ways appropriate to the course subject
    1. Compose in at least three different types of writing for different purposes, audiences, or media (e.g. creative, analytical, evaluative, or digital)
    2. Address multiple perspectives (scholarly and otherwise) on a topic while clearly voicing your own
    3. Effectively use critical terminology relevant to the course subject
    4. Incorporate evidence, following the citation style particular to the course subject
    5. Make conscious choices about language patterns, diction, and style

Use feedback appropriately to improve their writing through revision

English 203: Topics in Reading and Writing

Offers the student a deeper and more intense engagement with reading and writing than English 101 and l02. It focuses on a significant topic, theme, or genre, including a variety of textual types or range of historical periods. Instructors choose the texts for this course, and the texts selected represent the individual instructors’ estimates of both their own special competence and their students’ interest. Students in English 203 will write in a variety of genres and use a variety of perspectives and strategies to interpret works within the special context designed by their instructors. From this undertaking, they should continue to develop their skills as alert and critical readers, writers, and thinkers. English 203 may include also some writing in literary genres.

Some recent ENGL 203 Courses include:

Expressions of Youth Rebellion. Expressions of Youth Rebellion is a course that will survey a broad range of contemporary discourse relating to youth culture as an arena of socio-political resistance. Issues of generation, class, race, and gender will be central to our cultural analyses. Quizzes, discussions, and essays will revolve around the literature, films, and music that we study in class. In addition, students will be expected to research, write, and present a fully developed analytical research paper that focuses on a writer of “youth rebellion.” Required texts: Ellis, Iain. Rebels Wit Attitude: Subversive Rock Humorists (Soft Skull 2008); Salinger, J.D. The Catcher in the Rye (Little, Brown and Co. 1951); Cleaver, Eldridge. Soul on Ice (Delta 1968); Thompson, Hunter S. Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas (Vintage 1971); Brown, Rita Mae. Rubyfruit Jungle (Bantam 1973); Carroll, Jim. The Basketball Diaries (Penguin 1987); Faigley, Lester. The Brief Penguin Handbook (Pearson, 4th edition); CAL. (Instructor: Ellis)

Disney, Identity, and Feminism. Is Frozen a feminist film? What constructs happily- ever-after as a healthy or damaging concept? How does Disney positively or negatively affect children’s self-esteem? Examining the popularity, power, and influence of Disney’s most popular heroines, this course will survey various films including, but not limited to, The Little Mermaid, Aladdin, Princess and the Frog, Mulan, and Frozen. To aid our analysis, we’ll engage with feminist theories and philosophies, analytical essays, and/or short stories. Although we’ll focus primarily on female characters, this course interrogates more than sex and gender. Privileging intersectional thinking, we’ll also discuss the relationship between social identities such as race, sexual orientation, religion, disability, age, fat, class, and nationality that will prompt us to consider: which identities are most commonly featured? Which identities are at the margins? And, more importantly, why? Active in-class discussion is a critical part of this course, and throughout the semester, I will encourage students to live-tweet their viewing experiences. Some assignments include weekly reading responses, three essays, and a final exam. (Instructor: McKinney)

Sports Fanatics and Hooligans: Exploring Sports Fandom in Contemporary Literature. Sports have the ability to shape people individually and collectively—these people, those who watch, talk about, listen to, read about, and generally consume sports all fall under the category of “fan,” but what pushes these people into the role of the fanatic? How do race, gender, and sexuality factor into the sports fandom world? This course will examine the role of the sports fan within the culture of sporting events and tourism in contemporary literature. We will read, discuss, and write about what the expectations of the “fan” are, what the various levels of sports fandom look like, and how sports tourism has evolved for the fan. We will read Bissinger’s Friday Night Lights to examine the way a small town in Texas rallied around a high school football team and how identity was shaped for individuals and the role race played in the community at large. The class will also look at the problems that arise in fan culture (race, gender, sexuality, socioeconomic status, etc.) within the text and through current events. We will then examine sports tourism through selected essays in Best American Sports Writing and Fever Pitch, looking at how sports tourism has evolved (stadium tours, following teams around the country/world, buying sports memorabilia, etc.). (Instructor: Torres-Maksimowicz)

 “The Horror, The Horror.” The goal of this course is to introduce students to the Horror genre in literature, with a secondary interest in how Horror manifests in other mediums. Required reading for this course will come from American and British literature, starting in the Gothic period and moving to the present day, with discussion of splinter movements within Horror and non-American approaches to the genre along the way whenever possible. Assigned texts will include Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein, Internet-based Horror texts such as the Slender Man mythos, and short fiction from writers such as H.P. Lovecraft, Shirley Jackson, and Stephen King. In addition to learning various theoretical approaches and critiques of Horror and uncanny literature in general, students will also be tasked with reading and writing about Horror texts as responses to key moments or trends in history and culture, thereby deepening their understanding of Horror’s purpose and functions. (Instructor: Mills)

English 209: Introduction to Fiction

In-depth reading of and writing about prose fiction with emphasis on critical analysis of a variety of narrative types from different historical periods.

English 210: Introduction to Poetry

In-depth reading of and writing about poetry with emphasis on critical analysis of a variety of forms and techniques used in poems from different historical periods.

English 211: Introduction to Drama

In-depth reading of and writing about drama with emphasis on critical analysis of a variety of dramatic types from different historical periods.

English 220: Introduction to Creative Writing

In-depth reading and writing in multiple genres (e.g. poetry, fiction, creative nonfiction, playwriting). Creative assignments combine with critical analysis to help students identify, analyze, and employ forms and techniques across various genres, audiences, and contexts. Written assignments include creative works in multiple genres and critical responses to reading.


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