English Elective Courses

EN 093 An Introduction to Modern Irish I (Fall: 3)

This course continues in second semester as SL 028/EN 094
The Irish language in its cultural environment: a course for total beginners. Over the course of the semester, we'll aim to develop conversational and compositional skills and, in particular, your ability to read Irish prose and poetry. Texts and lectures will also introduce you to major themes in Irish history and culture associated with the rise and fall of Gaelic over the centuries. In the spring semester you can build on what you've gained and later, if you wish, fulfill your A&S language requirement by completing the two semesters of Continuing Modern Irish.
Joseph Nugent

Last Updated: 05-DEC-12

EN 094 An Introduction to Modern Irish II (Spring: 3)

Prerequisite: SL 027/EN 093
A continuation of EN 093, this course offers a continuing introduction to the Irish language for American students. We will continue to emphasize pronunciation, linguistic structures and grammar points. Our aim will be to increase our capacity to read and pronounce contemporary texts with the aid of a dictionary and to enlarge our understanding of the cultural heritage out of which the language emerged. Completion of this and Continuing Modern Irish will fulfill the A&S language requirement.
Joseph Nugent

Last Updated: 05-DEC-12

EN 097 Continuing Modern Irish I (Fall: 3)

This is a continuing course in modern Irish for those with a basic knowledge of the language. Emphasis will be on developing the ability to read contemporary literature in various genres. With the skills we developed in An Introduction to Modern Irish, we'll progress towards further vocabulary and work especially to improve our abilities with translation of modern poetry and prose. Completion of the second semester of Continuing Modern Irish will fulfill the Arts and Sciences language proficiency requirement.
Joseph Nugent

Last Updated: 05-DEC-12

EN 098 Continuing Modern Irish II (Spring: 3)

Prerequisite: EN097
In this completion of the two-year cycle of Irish language learning, we will engage deeply with modern texts and work with Irish through other media—psound and film. You will become familiar with contemporary texts and will engage in a sustained project of reading and translating in the original Irish one or more of the great works of literature written in Irish.
Joseph Nugent

Last Updated: 05-DEC-12

EN 110 Classical and Biblical Backgrounds of English Literature (Spring: 3)

The goals for this course include: (1) exposure to a broad range of Greek, Latin, and Hebrew literature in translation (myths, histories, authors, characters, plots, themes); (2) attentiveness to what is at stake, theoretically and practically, in translation into English; and (3) the development of comparatist practices of reading that respect cultural differences. Emphasis on the Homeric epics, Greek tragedies, the more conspicuously literary parts of the Hebrew Bible, and the metamorphoses of the Greek and Hebrew traditions in the Roman world during the transition to the Common Era.
Dayton Haskin

Last Updated: 24-JAN-13

EN 125 Introduction to Feminisms (Fall/Spring: 3)

Cross Listed with HS148, PS125, SC225
Fulfills Women Writer's requirement for EN/LSOE majors.
This introductory course offers both an overview and a foundation for understanding the various movements that make up what has come to be called the feminist movement in the U.S. Because systems of privilege and disadvantage shape women's and men's identities and social positions in multiple and unique ways, Introduction to Feminisms analyzes gender from an interdisciplinary approach and applies numerous academic disciplinary methods to the study of gender, including history, literature, psychology, and sociology, and explores women's and men's experiences within various cultural contexts, including socioeconomic class, race and ethnicity, religion and spirituality, nations of citizenship, origin and generation.
Stephanie May

Last Updated: 14-MAR-13

EN 131 Studies in Poetry (Fall/Spring: 3)

The goals of the course are close reading of poetry, developing the student's ability to ask questions which open poems to analysis, and writing lucid interpretative papers.
The Department

Last Updated: 05-DEC-12

EN 131.01 Studies in Poetry (Fall 2012-2013: 3)

This section of Studies in Poetry is designed for students who love poetry and are eager to explore the work of contemporary poets (Mark Doty, Brian Turner, Sharon Olds, Peter Balakian) as well as the poetry of canonical figures including Keats, Donne, Dickinson, Hopkins, Plath, Marvell, Frost and Stevens. In addition to focusing on the close reading of poetry, we will study poetic forms and critical terms. We will conclude the semester by thinking about the way that poetic form shapes the lyrical novel, using Virginia Woolf's To the Lighthouse as our example. Requirements include a series of quizzes on technical material as well as five short critical essays due over the course of the semester.
Laura Tanner

Last Updated: 14-JAN-13

EN 131.05 Studies in Poetry (Fall 2013-2014: 3)

An introduction to the close reading of poetry. Focusing on the short lyric, we will read a range of poets, beginning with Shakespeare's sonnets. Our guiding questions will be both theoretical and practical: What is poetic form? Is it intrinsic to each poem? If not, how much background knowledge (biographical, historical, technical) do we need to understand and enjoy poems, especially those of the past? Likely candidates for emphasis include John Keats, Adrienne Rich, and Elizabeth Bishop.
Andrew Sofer

Last Updated: 01-FEB-13

EN 131.11 Studies in Poetry (Fall 2013-2014: 3)

Close reading of poems, mainly lyric, from the 16th to the 20th century, with attention to metrical patterns and formal structures. Our main focus will be on the devices and uses of language that poets employ to express their ideas and feelings and to elicit certain responses from the reader. Several analytical papers and other written exercises will be assigned over the course of the semester.
Robert Kern

Last Updated: 25-JAN-13

EN 133 Studies in Narrative (Fall/Spring: 3)

This course introduces students to questions that they might bring to the study of narrative works—primarily novels, tales, and non-fictional narratives, though it may also include drama, film, and narrative poems. It aims to introduce the various critical frames through which we construct interpretations. As part of the process of reading, students will be introduced to common critical terms; narrative genres, conventions, and discourses; the construction of the character and the ways of representing consciousness; and the ordering of narrative time. The course will also expose the student to the implications of taking critical positions.
The Department

Last Updated: 05-DEC-12

EN 133.02 Studies in Narrative (Spring 2013-2014: 3)

This course introduces students to questions, terms, and tools that they might bring to the study of narrative works, primarily novels and short stories. This section of the course has three units. In "Suspense, Plot, Narrative," we will focus on detective fiction (by Arthur Conan Doyle, Edgar Allan Poe, and Jorge Luis Borges), a genre that emphasizes the mechanics of plot and the pleasures of reading. In "Consciousness and Narration," we will analyze two novels (Jane Austen's Emma and Virginia Woolf's Mrs. Dalloway) in great detail, dissecting the many ways Austen and Woolf use language to depict and create consciousness. Finally, in a section on "Writing a Research Paper," our focus will be on two meditations on both suspense and consciousness, Henry James's The Turn of the Screw, and Robert Louis Stevenson's Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. We will practice conducting library research, putting these two novellas in conversation with biographical material, their early reviews, nineteenth-century theories of the mind and psychology, cultural history from the period, and other literary critical approaches. This, like all sections of "Studies in Narrative," is a writing-intensive course.
Maia McAleavey

Last Updated: 01-NOV-13

EN 133.06 Studies in Narrative (Spring 2013-2014: 3)

This course aims to foster a deep appreciation for the art of literary narrative, and to develop a sophisticated vocabulary with which to assess and interpret these narratives. The particular skills of literary analysis you will learn in this course, namely: close reading, learning to speak and write within the parameters of a given discourse, and constructing an argument, are not merely academic but "life skills" that extend beyond literature and the classroom. Texts will include "great" novels as well as works of literary theory, and critical methodology.
Kalpana Seshadri

Last Updated: 30-JAN-13

EN 141 American Literary History I (Spring: 3)

Students need not take these courses in chronological order.
Fulfills the pre-1900 requirement.

From Anne Bradstreet's meditation on the burning of her house to Thoreau's determination to simply his life, from Frederick Douglass' denunciation of slavery to the troubling passivity of Melville's Bartleby—EN 141 provides an overview of American literary history between the landing of the Mayflower and the start of the Civil War. In addition to those already mentioned, writers studied will include Mary Rowlandson, Edward Taylor, Olaudah Equiano, Benjamin Franklin, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Susanna Rowson, and Walt Whitman.
Paul Lewis

Last Updated: 10-JAN-13

EN 142 American Literary History II (Fall: 3)

Fulfills pre-1900 requirement.
This is the second course surveying American literature, from the end of the Civil War to World War I. It covers the literary movements of realism, naturalism, and regionalism. It includes key literary figures such as Henry James, Mark Twain, and Stephen Crane, as well as women writers (Kate Chopin, Willa Cather, and Edith Wharton), immigrant writers (Abraham Cahan), and African American writers (W. E. B. Du Bois and Charles Chesnutt). Topics will include the role of capital, ethnicity and the transformation of urban space, regional identity, and ongoing struggles relating to race, class and gender.
Lori Harrison-Kahan

Last Updated: 10-JAN-13

EN 143 American Literary History III (Fall: 3)

This course will provide an introductory overview of literature written in America from World War I to the present. We will focus on the relationship between cultural tensions and narrative or poetic strategies, as well as the literary periods of modernism and post-modernism. In our analysis of primary texts by Faulkner, Fitzgerald, Hemingway, Eliot, Larsen, DeLillo and others, we will explore constructions of national identity, governing myths of the American Dream, the development of commodity culture, the place of the family, the significance of space, the construction of narrative subjectivity, and issues of gender, race and class.
Laura Tanner

Last Updated: 10-JAN-13

EN 143.01 American Literary History III (Fall 2013-2014: 3)

This course will provide an introductory overview of literature written in America from World War I to the present. We will contextualize specific literary works within historical, cultural and aesthetic frameworks, focusing on the impact of World War I on literature, the relationship between cultural tensions and narrative or poetic strategies, and the literary periods of modernism and post-modernism. A series of student presentations on issues, texts and events in twentieth century American history, art and popular culture will set the stage for the literary works we will study by providing a sense of the cultural conflicts, historical events and artistic breakthroughs of the twentieth century. The class will focus on novels including Hemingway's A Farewell to Arms, Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby, Hurston's Their Eyes Were Watching God, Faulkner's As I Lay Dying, DeLillo's White Noise and Morrison's Beloved. We will also read poetry by Eliot, Stevens and Olds, short fiction by Alexie, Diaz, Moore, O'Brien, Gen and Lahiri, as well as two plays. Requirements for the course include class participation and attendance, an oral presentation, two critical essays, a midterm and a final exam. Interested and enthusiastic students from outside the English major are welcome to attend.
Laura Tanner

Last Updated: 23-JAN-13

EN 170 Introduction to British Literature and Culture I (Fall: 3)

Fulfills the pre-1700 requirement.
This course, along with Introduction to British Literature and Culture II, given the following semester, will offer an historical survey of British literature from Beowulf to the present. This first part will cover the Middle Ages, Renaissance, Restoration, and earlier Eighteenth-Century literature, offering a basic map of British literature and culture as they developed during these periods and introducing the major authors and cultural themes, as well as lesser known authors and historical background.
Mary Crane

Last Updated: 10-JAN-13

EN 171 Introduction to British Literature and Culture II (Spring: 3)

Fulfills the pre-1900 requirement.
This lecture course explores great British writers from 1700 to the present. This period includes (among much else) the great essayists and satirists of the eighteenth century, the Romantic poets and Victorian novelists of the nineteenth, the modernists of the twentieth, and the world writing that follows the break-up of the British empire. We consider these works in light of the cultural context in which they were written.
James Najarian

Last Updated: 05-DEC-12

EN 175 Jewish Writers in Russia and America (Spring: 3)

Cross Listed with SL375
Satisfies Cultural Diversity Core Requirement
All readings and classes conducted in English.
The experience of Jewish writers living in Russia and America from the 1880s until the present, examined through prose, poetry, drama, and memoirs written in English or translated into English from Russian, Yiddish, and Hebrew. The responses of Jewish writers to Zionism, the Russian Revolution, and the Holocaust with attention to anti-Semitism, emigration, limits of assimilation, and the future of Jews in Russia and America. The works of authors such as An-sky, Babel, Bagritskii, Bellow, Bialik, Erenburg, Malamud, Arthur Miller, Ozick, Philip Roth, Sholom Aleikhem, and Ulitskaia.
Maxim D. Shrayer

Last Updated: 24-JAN-13

EN 201 Versions in Black: Genres of Black Women's Writing (Spring: 3)

Cross Listed with BK201
Satisfies Cultural Diversity Core Requirement
The phrase "Black Women's Writing" suggests that such writing is a fixed or homogeneous body of work that can be neatly defined and represented. Our course constitutes itself against this idea. By re-thinking these works, we also re-examine notions of literary canon, race, gender, sexuality, community, and history. Significantly, we "de-construct" common notions of Black Women's Writing by examining the varied genres these writers use to express their imaginings. Required readings come from the fields of science fiction (Octavia Butler), prose/experimental (Gayl Jones and Martha Southgate) novels, drama (Suzan-Lori Parks), poetry (Elizabeth Alexander), and autobiography/memoir (Toi Derricotte).
Rhonda Frederick

Last Updated: 22-JAN-13

EN 204 London: A History in Verse (Spring: 3)

Capitalizing on Mark Ford's recent collection of poetry that engages with one of the world's great cities, this new course aims to explore, and to enhance pleasure in, poems that span about six centuries of urban experience. For counterpoint, there will be intermittent forays into the country, with some classical pastoral poems in modern translation and glimpses from the likes of Shakespeare, Wordsworth, Frost, and Elizabeth Bishop.
Dayton Haskin

Last Updated: 25-JAN-13

EN 212 Introduction to Medical Humanities (Spring: 3)

An exploration of health and illness in literary texts, from the classical period to the present. Topics will include the representation of woundedness and isolation; contagion and contamination; cultural fascination with and apprehension of embodied "otherness;" writing about pain; metaphors of disease; the peculiar associations between health and beauty in contemporary culture; visualism in health care practices; the shape of debates about end-of-life decisions. Primary texts may include works by Aeschylus, Shakespeare, Montaigne, Bacon, Camus, Grealy, Audre Lorde, Anatole Broyard, Ann Fadiman, and Margaret Edsel; theoretical readings by Elaine Scarry, Susan Sontag, Rosemarie Thomson Garland, and Byron Good.
Amy Boesky

Last Updated: 28-JAN-13

EN 221 Introduction to Creative Writing (Fall/Spring: 3)

An introductory course in which students will write both poetry and short fiction and read published examples of each. We will experiment with the formal possibilities of the two genres and look at what links and separates them. The course is workshop-based, with an emphasis on steady production and revision. Through exercises and/or open and directed writing assignments, students will produce a portfolio of short fiction and poetry.
The Department

Last Updated: 05-DEC-12

EN 224 Post-Soviet Russian Literature (Fall: 3)

Cross Listed with SL224
Since the fall of the Soviet Union in 1991, dramatic cultural shifts have transformed Russian literature--writers no longer work under the "red pencil" of censorship, but like writers in the West, under the "censorship" of the marketplace. Crime fiction vies with more highbrow literature, and post-modern themes and devices prevail among a younger generation less influenced by a classical or Soviet heritage. Diversity (e.g., gender and ethnic identities), newly acquired tastes, and a predictable tension between Soviet and post-Soviet values characterize works by Boris Akunin, Valeriia Narbikova, Viktor Pelevin, Nina Sadur, Vladimir Sorokin, Olga Slavnikova, and Liudmila Ulitskaia.
Cynthia Simmons
Maxim D. Shrayer

Last Updated: 05-FEB-13

EN 227 Classics of Russian Literature (in translation) (Fall: 3)

Cross Listed with SL222
Offered periodically
Conducted entirely in English
Undergraduate major elective
Required for Russian majors

A survey of selected major works, authors, genres and movements in 19th-century Russian literature, with emphasis on the classic works by Pushkin, Lermontov, Gogol, Turgenev, Tolstoy, Dostoevsky, and Chekhov. All readings and discussions are in English.
Cynthia Simmons

Last Updated: 30-JAN-13

EN 235 Second Voices: 21st Century American Fiction by Immigrants (Spring: 3)

This course will examine the fiction and essays of several 21st-century writers who have immigrated to the US. While each text raises a different exile, choice, national and trans-national identities. Looking closely at language itself, we will ask what it might meant for some of these writers to be writing in their second language. Texts by Edwidge Danticat, Junot Diaz, Dinaw Mengestu, Gary Shteyngart, Ha Jin, and Iris Gomez. Writer Edwidge Danticat will visit campus in March. Students are required to attend two of her events outside of class.
Elizabeth Graver

Last Updated: 28-JAN-13

EN 237 Studies in Children's Literature: Disney and the Wondertale (Fall: 3)

Disney films have remained outside the critical landscape because they have been considered either beneath artistic attention or beyond reproach. The goal of this course will be to explore the issues presented in such Disney films as The Lion King, Aladdin, Prince of Egypt, and Pocahontas. To do this, we will read source material (The Arabian Nights, Hamlet, tales about Pocahontas, Bible stories about Moses, Exodus, etc.) and secondary studies.
Bonnie Rudner

Last Updated: 23-JAN-13

EN 240 Modern Theater and Drama (Spring: 3)

Cross Listed with CT365
This upper-level theatre studies course traces the development of modern European drama from Ibsen to Beckett, or roughly speaking, from 1875 to 1975. Other major dramatists to be studied include Strindberg, Chekhov, Shaw, Pirandello, Brecht, Genet, and Ionesco. The various movements within modernism -- naturalism, symbolism, expressionism, futurism, and surrealism -- are also examined. Students are expected to read one or two plays a week, write two substantial papers, and take a comprehensive exam.
Dr. Stuart J. Hecht

Last Updated: 24-JAN-13

EN 246 Introduction to Asian American Literature (Fall: 3)

Satisfies Cultural Diversity Core Requirement
This course is a broad introduction to Asian American literature, criticism, and culture. This means that we will read at least one book-length work from each of the following ethnic groups: Filipino, Japanese, Chinese,Korean, South Asian, and Vietnamese. Together, the readings provide us with an opportunity to reflect on the long sweep of Asians in America struggling togive expression to their experiences. Discussion will often touch on many sensitive topics, so I wish to emphasize the importance of keeping an open mind, being respectful of others' opinions, and keeping up with the reading.
Min Song

Last Updated: 23-JAN-13

EN 260 Talking Things in the 18th Century (Spring: 3)

Eighteenth-century texts through the lens of "thing theory," a theoretical approach addressing how inanimate objects help to form and transform human beings. During the eighteenth century, what did objects mean? How did people understand their things as things? We will read classic works, including Defoe's Robinson Crusoe, Pope's The Rape of the Lock, and Swift's Gulliver's Travels, among other works, alongside relevant thing theory. We will also explore how human beings were treated as objects under chattel slavery. This class offers expertise in the practice of "thing theory" and access to a eighteenth-century texts from a number of genres.
Elizabeth Wallace

Last Updated: 25-JAN-13

EN 277 Introduction to American Studies (Spring: 3)

This course offers an introduction to the interdisciplinary study of American culture. It is not a survey of American cultural history; rather, we will concentrate on approaches, methods, and themes of interest as we assemble critical skills for making interpretive arguments about aspects of culture in their historical moment. The forms we analyze will include examples from literature, film, painting, music, theater, landscape, and architecture, among others. Members of the American Studies faculty will present guest lectures to highlight various aspects of the field.
Lori Harrison-Kahan

Last Updated: 10-JAN-13

EN 306 Walking Infinite Jest (Spring: 1)

David Foster Wallace describes Enfield, Massachusetts—an important setting in his 1996 novel Infinite Jest—as "a kind of arm-shape extending north from Commonwealth Avenue and separating Brighton into Upper and Lower, its elbow nudging East Newton's ribs and its fist sunk into Allston...". Sound familiar? In this course, we'll conduct a Bostonian's reading of Wallace┐s opus. Students will be required to write weekly critical reading responses, and should be prepared for the course's non-traditional structure: weekly meetings won't begin until week three, and will sometimes be canceled in lieu of weekend "on-site" meetings in Brighton and Boston.
Christopher Boucher

Last Updated: 10-OCT-13

EN 306.01 Walking Infinite Jest (Spring 2013-2014: 1)

David Foster Wallace describes Enfield, Massachusetts—an important setting in his 1996 novel Infinite Jest—as "a kind of arm-shape extending north from Commonwealth Avenue and separating Brighton into Upper and Lower, its elbow nudging East Newton's ribs and its fist sunk into Allston...". Sound familiar? In this course, we'll take advantage of our location to conduct a Bostonian's reading of Wallace's opus. Students will be required to write weekly critical reading responses, and should be prepared for the course's non-traditional structure: weekly meetings won't begin until week three, and will sometimes be canceled in lieu of weekend "on-site" meetings in Brighton and Boston. As we walk the same paths as the characters, we'll consider just how close —or far—we really are to the world of Wallace's novel.
Christopher Boucher

Last Updated: 10-OCT-13

EN 307 History of the English Language (Spring: 3)

Satisfies Lynch School of Education Requirements for English Majors (HEL/Grammer/Syntax)
This course provides a cultural history of English over 1500 years. We examine basic linguistic processes (meanings, sentence structure, sounds, spellings, word formation); follow the phases of English (Indo-European, Germanic, Old English, Middle English, Early Modern English, Modern English), and interrogate notions of correctness, "standard"/"non-standard," "literary" language, simplified language, spelling reform, pidgins and Creoles, the increasing dominance and variety of English around the world, and the powerful influence of cyberspace. Along the way, we will read historical events such as invasions, political and intellectual revolutions, immigration, emigration, and cultural assimilation as shaping forces in the living entity of the language.
Robert Stanton

Last Updated: 10-JAN-13

EN 307.01 History of the English Language (Spring 2013-2014: 3)

This course reads English language and culture through one another over the 1500-year history of English. and word formation. We will begin with some of the basic concepts of language and language change, including semantics (how words mean), syntax (sentence structure), phonology (where sounds come from and how they are made), orthography (the bizarre English spelling system and how it came to be), and morphology (how words are put together). From there we will move to the prehistory of English, including the Indo-European language family and where English fits into it. Then we will work chronologically, moving through Old English (before 1100), Middle English (12th-15th centuries), Early Modern English (16th-18th centuries), and Modern English (18th century-present). We will look at issues of language use, such as the notion of linguistic correctness, the construction of "standard" and "non-standard" English, "literary" language, simplified or plain language, spelling reform, pidgins and creoles, the increasing hegemony of English on a world scale, and the important variations of English around the world. Along the way, we will read historical events such as invasions, political and intellectual revolutions, immigration, emigration and cultural assimilation as shaping forces in the living entity of the language. Grammatical and linguistic terms and ideas will be explained in as much detail as necessary. No previous background in early English is required, and there will be enough language instruction to allow you to delight in the difference of more youthful Englishes.
Robert Stanton

Last Updated: 30-JAN-13

EN 308 Detective Stories (Spring: 1)

Offered Periodically
This one-credit course focuses on reasons for the rise and popularity of this genre, and on two special themes -- the relationship between the (private) detective and the police, and the way the novels present specific cities in specific time periods through their crimes, criminals, and policing forces. We'll read Ellery Queen's New York City serial killer novel Cat of Many Tails, Robert B. Parker's kidnapping novel Looking for Rachel Wallace, and Sara Paretsky's prison-industrial complex novel Hard Time. A final assignment will be student's choice. Classes begin Wed. Jan. 29, and conclude on Wed. Apr. 2.
Judith Wilt

Last Updated: 09-OCT-13

EN 308.01 Detective Stories (Spring 2013-2014: 1)

This one-credit course on detective novels and the city focuses both on reasons for the rise and popularity of this genre, and on two special themes -- the relationship between the (private) detective and the police, and the way the novels present specific cities in specific time periods through their crimes, criminals, and policing forces. Together we'll read Ellery Queen's New York City serial killer novel Cat of Many Tails, Robert B. Parker's kidnapping novel Looking for Rachel Wallace, and Sara Paretsky's prison-industrial complex novel Hard Time. A final assignment will be student-s choice -- a detective novel or film you already like, or one set in your own city or region (believe me, there probably is one!). Brief writing assignments on each of the novels and a final short paper on the novel or film of your choice. Classes begin Wed. Jan. 29, after you get the rest of your semester started, and conclude on Wed. Apr. 2, well before your final papers and exams are due.
Judith Wilt

Last Updated: 15-OCT-13

EN 310 Shakespeare (Spring: 3)

Fulfills the pre-1700 requirement.
An introduction, placing Shakespeare's drama in the historical and theatrical contexts of his time. Topics will include Shakespeare's professional career; the playhouses for which he wrote; the structure of Elizabethan playing companies; Elizabethan stage conventions such as blank verse, doubling, and cross-dressing; and the textual and performance histories of his plays. There will be two substantial papers and a final. Since one learns much about Shakespeare on one's feet, the collaborative staging of a scene is also required, along with active class participation.
Andrew Sofer

Last Updated: 25-JAN-13

EN 318 Nineteenth Century American Poetry (Spring: 3)

Fulfills the pre-1900 requirement.
A study of the four major canonical figures of 19th Century American poetry—Emerson, Poe, Whitman, and Dickinson—with briefer consideration of such "fireside" poets as Bryant, Longfellow, and Whittier, and some of the popular women poets, especially Lydia Sigourney.
Robert Kern

Last Updated: 17-OCT-11

EN 412 Writing Workshop: Creative Nonfiction (Fall/Spring: 3)

Over the past few decades, the best nonfiction being written has expanded to include not only such traditional forms as argument and exposition but also the mixed modes of creative nonfiction. As an intermediate-level course, we will build on the work of the First Year Writing Seminar and hone the skills needed in advanced writing electives. Students in this course choose their own topics and explore the range of possibilities now available to the nonfiction writer.
The Department

Last Updated: 05-DEC-12

EN 412.10 Writing Workshop: Creative Nonfiction (Spring 2013-2014: 3)

This is an introductory level non-fiction writing course open to majors (especially writing concentrators) and non-majors alike. Students will read a number of creative non-fiction essays, to use perhaps as models, but more to familiarize them with the possibilities and practices of the genre. Students will be expected to submit 40-50 written pages for a grade at the end of the semester. The class itself is primarily a workshop in which students analyze and evaluate each other's work. There are also conferences at several times during the semester.
George O'Har

Last Updated: 28-JAN-13

EN 417 The Politics and Literature of the Irish Nation, 1800-1922 (Spring: 3)

Cross Listed with HS417
Satisfies Cultural Diversity Core Requirement
Offered Periodically
Explores Irish literature and history during a century of turbulent social and political change--as Ireland moved from Union with Great Britain (1800) to rebellion and independence. (1921). By studying some key works of fiction (Edgeworth, Owenson, Carleton, Somerville and Ross), poetry (Ferguson, Mangan, Davis, Yeats), and drama (Boucicault, Yeats, Synge), we will examine contesting visions of national identity as well as evidence about Ireland's material culture. We will also explore the connections between literary works and the political rhetoric and actions of a rapidly changing society. Whenever appropriate, we will look at the cultural evidence of visual art as well.
Vera Kreilkamp

Last Updated: 24-JAN-13

EN 476 Studies in Words (Spring: 3)

Cross Listed with SL376, CL386
The ways of words in the life of language as seen through the linguistic techniques of morphology, lexicography, semantics, pragmatics and etymology. Aspects examined include: word formation, word origins, nests of words, winged words, words at play, words and material culture, writing systems, the semantic representations of words, bytes and words, the creative word, the Word made flesh, awkward words, dirty words, dialect vocabulary, salty words, fighting words, words at prayer, new words, and the Great Eskimo vocabulary hoax.
M.J. Connolly

Last Updated: 24-JAN-13

EN 502 Boston: History, Literature and Culture II (Spring: 3)

Covering the period from the Civil War to the present, this is the second half of a two-semester, interdisciplinary course on Boston's history, literature, and culture. Team-taught by a History and an English professor, and drawing on faculty in other departments and experts in the Boston area to provide insights into Boston's culture broadly defined, the class examines Boston's literature, film, art, music, and other cultural forms in relation to political and social developments. Site visits will take students out to the streets, museums, and archives of one of the most historic cities in the United States.
Carlo Rotella
David Quigley

Last Updated: 31-JAN-13

EN 531 Race in Literature (Fall: 3)

This course examines the cultural diversity of American literature. It focuses on the themes of self-invention and re-invention in multi-ethnic texts with an emphasis on African American and immigrant writers. Genres and topics include: slave narratives, passing novels and the color line, coming-of-age stories, assimilation and Americanization, Orientalism, blackface performance, whiteness and the Africanist presence, transnationalism, urbanism and regionalism, multiracial and post-race identities, and post-9/11 immigrant experiences. Although the primary focus will be the relationship between race and nation, we will also consider how gender, sexuality, and class intersect with ethno-racial difference. Two lectures and one discussion section each week.
Lori Harrison-Kahan

Last Updated: 31-JAN-13

EN 588 Business Writing (Fall/Spring: 3)

For CSOM students, the course is also available as MH 588.
This course is designed to expose students to the type of writing done on the job. It is a practical course where real-life examples are used to illustrate appropriate writing strategies, style, language and formats commonly found in a business setting. By the end of the semester, students will be proficient in producing business correspondence, instructions, reports, proposals, resumes, and presentation materials.
Department

Last Updated: 25-APR-13

EN 599 Undergraduate Reading and Research (Fall/Spring: 3)


The Department

Last Updated: 05-DEC-12

EN 627 Capstone: Ways of Knowing (Spring: 3)

Cross Listed with UN513
Capstone:Ways of Knowing offers seniors the opportunity to examine the workings of memory in a variety of texts--fiction, poetry, memoir, and film, public memorials and community rituals--and to develop related reflections that also explore their own memories and the ways in which these give meaning to the present and may help to discern the future. A discussion and writing course, texts will come from such writers and artists as Toni Morrison, Chang-Rae Lee, Michael MacDonald, Sherman Alexie, and Zakes Mda, filmmaker Marlon Riggs, playwright Athol Fugard, and poets Elizabeth Bishop, Philip Levine, Yusef Komunyakaa, and Martin Espada.
Carol Hurd Green

Last Updated: 30-JAN-13

EN 637 Capstone: The Vision Quest: A Multicultural Approach to Self-Discovery (Fall: 3)

Satisfies Cultural Diversity Core Requirement
We will use the Vision Quest, a Native American ritual for finding oneself, as a metaphor for four years at Boston College. Relating their own lives to the lives of the characters, who have all gone on some variation of a quest, students will explore ways their education and experiences at college have prepared them to face the great mystery of life ahead. The main texts include: The Grass Dancer, The Life of Pi, Go Tell It On the Mountain, The Bonesetter's Daughter, and How the Garcia Girls Lost their Accents, and the films Thunderheart and The Whale Rider.
Dorothy Miller

Last Updated: 10-JAN-13