SUMMER 2017

LOWER DIVISION COURSES IN ENGLISH
PLEASE NOTE THAT THESE LOWER DIVISION COURSES DO NOT FULFILL ANY REQUIREMENTS FOR THE MAJOR IN ENGLISH OR AMERICAN LITERATURE & CULTURE OR THE ENGLISH MINOR.

English 20W.1 Introduction to Creative Writing
Prof. Stanford

Designed to introduce fundamentals of creative writing and writing workshop experience. Emphasis on poetry, fiction, drama, or creative nonfiction depending on wishes of instructor(s) during any given term. Readings from assigned texts, weekly writing assignments (multiple drafts and revisions), and final portfolio required.

English 20W.2 Introduction to Creative Writing
Prof. Kincade

Designed to introduce fundamentals of creative writing and writing workshop experience. Emphasis on poetry, fiction, drama, or creative nonfiction depending on wishes of instructor(s) during any given term. Readings from assigned texts, weekly writing assignments (multiple drafts and revisions), and final portfolio required.

English 90 Shakespeare Prof. Allen

Online course.

Not open for credit to English majors or students with credit for course 150A or 150B. Survey of Shakespeare's plays, including comedies, tragedies, and histories, selected to represent Shakespeare's breadth, artistic progress, and total dramatic achievement.


UPPER DIVISION COURSES IN ENGLISH

LITERATURES IN ENGLISH BEFORE 1500

English 149.1 Robin Hood: Robbing from the Medieval Past
Medievalisms
Prof. Fisher

Robin Hood - the man with green clothes, a quiver of arrows on his back, who is a remarkably good shot with a bow. He steals from the rich and gives to the poor. Everybody knows Robin Hood. Or, more accurately, everybody knows some later version of Robin Hood, whether the 1991 film starring Kevin Costner, or Disney’s 1973 animated film, or even the 1938 Errol Flynn movie. This class will explore how Robin Hood was invented - first in late medieval England, and then again in the 19th and 20th centuries. At the same time, we’ll examine how particular imaginations of medieval England accompanied those inventions, and what is at stake in their uncritical adoption. We will read a series of medieval outlaw tales and Robin Hood texts, and then follow the tradition through early modern ballads and broadsides, into nineteenth century stories and novels, and then finally a series of films. Requirements: Passionate class participation, three essays.

English 149.2 Crime Stories: Literature and the Law in the Middle Ages
Medievalisms
Prof. Jager

Reading and discussion of crime narratives, both fictional and factual, relating to medieval and early-modern Europe. Topics include murder, theft, rape, property disputes, identity-theft, investigative procedures and systems of justice, trial by combat, and capital punishment. Main texts (some excerpted) include: The Song of Roland, Njal’s Saga, Arthurian tales, Chaucer, and The Return of Martin Guerre. Grading: regular factual reading quizzes (50%); a 7-8 page (2000-word) research essay (50%).

NOT OPEN TO STUDENTS WHO HAVE COMPLETED ENGLISH 142 IN A PREVIOUS SUMMER TERM.

LITERATURES IN ENGLISH 1500-1700

English 150C Shakespeare: Major Plays
Topics in Shakespeare
Prof. Little

This course provides an upper-division introduction to Shakespeare’s plays by surveying a few of the plays we recognize as Shakespeare’s most significant plays both historically and contemporarily.  Drawing on works from the entirety of Shakespeare’s career, this course emphasizes the formal and historical properties of Shakespeare’s plays (and stage) and the ways Shakespeare’s plays historically and contemporarily engage questions of race, gender, sexuality, and class, as well as questions of religion, philosophy, and politics. The way all these questions are embodied, put into bodies, signals for our course the way Shakespeare’s dynamic poetry (and language) has become essential hallmarks for the modern and the global. Some of the possible texts for our course are A Midsummer Night’s Dream, The Merchant of Venice, Hamlet, Othello, King Lear, Macbeth, and The Tempest. Students enrolled in the course will take a weekly reading quiz and submit a final paper.

LITERATURES IN ENGLISH 1700-1850

English 163C
Jane Austen and Her Peers
Prof. Mellor
 
Online course.

Coverage of six novels of Jane Austen, as well as literary works that most influenced her: Mary Wollstonecraft’s Vindication of Rights of Woman, Gothic novel, and Maria Edgeworth’s Belinda.

 

LITERATURES IN ENGLISH 1850-PRESENT

English 119.3 Sex, Drugs, and Murder: The Literature of Los Angeles
Literary Cities
Prof. Huehls

CANCELLED

This course examines dominant concerns in the historical development of Los Angeles through the lens of twentieth-century literature. From Hollywood to South Central, downtown to our very own Westwood, the course will focus on the politics of space and place in novels from Nathaniel West, Chester Himes, Brett Easton Ellis, and Karen Yamashita, among others.

English 129.1
Comic Fiction, or, The Graphic Novel
Topics in Genre Studies, Interdisciplinary Studies, and Critical Theory
Prof. Mott

We will study several contemporary graphic novels and non-novels in terms of their form. This genre is particularly interesting because it calls on its reader to use the rigors of visual and textual analysis for understanding. In fact, to provide us with a critical vocabulary particular to comics, we’ll begin with a couple of chapters from Scott McCloud’s Understanding Comics.  In addition to our attention to the form of various examples of “sequential art,” we will study the political implications of works such as Alison Bechdel’s Fun Home, Gene Luen Yang’s & Sonny Liew’s The Shadow Hero, and Mat Johnson’s & Warren Pleece’s Incognegro. That is, part of our discussion of these texts will take up topics dealing with race, class, gender, and sexuality, among other issues.

For more information, please view this short video clip: https://youtu.be/8jBJA3AETEU.

English 170A American Literature, 1865 to 1900
Prof. Colacurcio

Historical survey of American literature from end of Civil War to beginning of 20th century, including writers such as Howells, James, Twain, Norris, Dickinson, Crane, Chesnutt, Gilman, and others working in modes of realist and naturalist novel, regional and vernacular prose, and poetry.

English 174C Narratives of Media, Technology, and Community
Contemporary American Fiction
Prof. Carruth

Examines fiction of living U.S.-based writers, including Don DeLillo, Junot Díaz, Jennifer Egan, and Ruth Ozeki. Considers major literary forms and movements of past century: modernism, postmodernism, science fiction, realism. Also addresses how contemporary American writers engage with the innovations and ramifications of media, technology, and local vs. global community.

For more information, please view this short video clip: https://youtu.be/d-AwDOuGJsw.

English 179 Major American Rappers
Topics in Literature, circa 1850 to Present
Prof. Reed

Study of a number of vital figures in rap music from the past twenty years. The landmark artists of hip-hop’s second score share a problem: in verses and choruses, themes and techniques, dialects and citations, and particularly in their complications of the idea of authenticity, the most energetic flows of this era test out new relationships with mainstream music and culture. Such relationships are more complex than the righteous antagonism of gangster rap, the message-heavy progressivism of conscious hip-hop, and the arty apartness of, say, the Beastie Boys. Instead, second-wave lyricists like Outkast, Aesop Rock, Nikki Minaj, and Kendrick Lamar refract and inflect even as they consolidate those earlier approaches, producing a new economy of styles and subgenres. Exploring this economy, we will pursue questions of race, gender, and region under the conditions of late capitalism.

GENDER, RACE, ETHNICITY, DISABILITY, AND SEXUALITY STUDIES

English M107A Women Writers and the Fairy Tale Tradition
Studies in Women's Writing
Prof. Lorhan

Beginning with a selection of literary fairy tales composed by French female storytellers (conteuses), such as Madame d'Aulnoy and Jeanne-Marie Leprince de Beaumont, we will examine how these tales address questions of agency, voice, representation, and creativity. Often overshadowed by collections of fairy tales compiled by Charles Perrault, the Grimm brothers, and Joseph Jacobs, these seventeenth- and eighteenth-century women writers created a vibrant tradition upon which later female artists would build. Focusing on poetry, short fiction, and criticism written by twentieth- and twenty-first century Anglo-American authors, we will examine the ways in which these descendants of the conteuses incorporate fairy tale motifs, themes, and plotlines into their writings; destabilize the messages inculcated by classic fairy tales through subversive retellings; argue the merits of the fairy-tale genre as a vehicle for achieving women's liberation; and pay homage to literary foremothers. Authors examined include Anne Sexton, Angela Carter, Margaret Atwood, Jane Yolen, Julia Alvarez, Louise Glück, Angela de Hoyos, Tanith Lee, Lisa Goldstein, Emma Donoghue, Carol Ann Duffy, Victoria Chang, and Helen Oyeyemi.

English 129.1
Comic Fiction, or, The Graphic Novel
Topics in Genre Studies, Interdisciplinary Studies, and Critical Theory
Prof. Mott

We will study several contemporary graphic novels and non-novels in terms of their form. This genre is particularly interesting because it calls on its reader to use the rigors of visual and textual analysis for understanding. In fact, to provide us with a critical vocabulary particular to comics, we’ll begin with a couple of chapters from Scott McCloud’s Understanding Comics.  In addition to our attention to the form of various examples of “sequential art,” we will study the political implications of works such as Alison Bechdel’s Fun Home, Gene Luen Yang’s & Sonny Liew’s The Shadow Hero, and Mat Johnson’s & Warren Pleece’s Incognegro. That is, part of our discussion of these texts will take up topics dealing with race, class, gender, and sexuality, among other issues.

For more information, please view this short video clip: https://youtu.be/8jBJA3AETEU.

English 149.2 Crime Stories: Literature and the Law in the Middle Ages
Medievalisms
Prof. Jager

Reading and discussion of crime narratives, both fictional and factual, relating to medieval and early-modern Europe. Topics include murder, theft, rape, property disputes, identity-theft, investigative procedures and systems of justice, trial by combat, and capital punishment. Main texts (some excerpted) include: The Song of Roland, Njal’s Saga, Arthurian tales, Chaucer, and The Return of Martin Guerre. Grading: regular factual reading quizzes (50%); a 7-8 page (2000-word) research essay (50%).

NOT OPEN TO STUDENTS WHO HAVE COMPLETED ENGLISH 142 IN A PREVIOUS SUMMER TERM.

English 163C Jane Austen and Her Peers
Prof. Mellor

Online course.


Coverage of six novels of Jane Austen, as well as literary works that most influenced her: Mary Wollstonecraft’s Vindication of Rights of Woman, Gothic novel, and Maria Edgeworth’s Belinda.

 
English 179
Major American Rappers
Topics in Literature, circa 1850 to Present
Prof. Reed

Study of a number of vital figures in rap music from the past twenty years. The landmark artists of hip-hop’s second score share a problem: in verses and choruses, themes and techniques, dialects and citations, and particularly in their complications of the idea of authenticity, the most energetic flows of this era test out new relationships with mainstream music and culture. Such relationships are more complex than the righteous antagonism of gangster rap, the message-heavy progressivism of conscious hip-hop, and the arty apartness of, say, the Beastie Boys. Instead, second-wave lyricists like Outkast, Aesop Rock, Nikki Minaj, and Kendrick Lamar refract and inflect even as they consolidate those earlier approaches, producing a new economy of styles and subgenres. Exploring this economy, we will pursue questions of race, gender, and region under the conditions of late capitalism.

IMPERIAL, TRANSNATIONAL, AND POSTCOLONIAL STUDIES

English 134 Oriental Tales
Nationalism and Transnationalism
Prof. Charles

Aladdin. Ali Babi. Djinns and genies. Scheherazade and the sultan. These characters and their spellbinding narratives all originate in the Arabian Nights, a transcultural text whose embedded stories remain arguably unparalleled in their world-making and whose popular circulation has been world changing. This course will focus on readings from the long eighteenth century, known as an “Age of Enlightenment” when philosophers and scientists emphasized reason, but also the period when Arabian Nights was translated into English and became a cultural phenomenon. Oriental tales often provide alternative ways of knowing that value magic, orality, and folk practices, and they will provide us with a lens for interrogating the hegemonic relation between the British Empire and its others. Harry Potter and its modern-day magic will serve as a coda.


GENRE STUDIES, INTERDISCIPLINARY STUDIES, CRITICAL THEORY

English 115D Detective Fiction
Prof. Allmendinger

Study of British and American detective fiction and literature of detection.

English 115E Science Fiction Prof. Streeter
Study of science fiction and speculative literatures.

English 118C From "Howl" to Hunger Games:
Imagining Dystopia in Literature and Film
Studies in Visual Culture
Prof. Lewak

How do we imagine dystopian worlds? Why are we so fascinated with them? And how has the development of special and visual effects changed our conversation about them? We will begin to explore these questions through an examination of a few post-1945 works of 20th and 21st literature and their cinematic counterparts. The class will begin with Allen Ginsberg’s poem “Howl” (and the 2010 James Franco film of the same name). Next we will read Philip K. Dick’s 1968 novel, Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep (and watch Ridley Scott’s 1982/2007 cinematic adaptation, Blade Runner), Arthur C. Clarke’s 1968 novel 2001: A Space Odyssey (adapted into the 1968 film of the same name co-constructed by Clarke and Stanley Kubrick), and Yann Martel’s 2001 novel, Life of Pi (as well as the 2012 film by Ang Lee, Life of Pi). The course will end with the 2008 novel The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins (juxtaposed to Gary Ross’s 2012 cinematic version, The Hunger Games).

English 119.3 Sex, Drugs, and Murder: The Literature of Los Angeles
Literary Cities
Prof. Huehls

CANCELLED

This course examines dominant concerns in the historical development of Los Angeles through the lens of twentieth-century literature. From Hollywood to South Central, downtown to our very own Westwood, the course will focus on the politics of space and place in novels from Nathaniel West, Chester Himes, Brett Easton Ellis, and Karen Yamashita, among others.

English 129.1
Comic Fiction, or, The Graphic Novel
Topics in Genre Studies, Interdisciplinary Studies, and Critical Theory
Prof. Mott

We will study several contemporary graphic novels and non-novels in terms of their form. This genre is particularly interesting because it calls on its reader to use the rigors of visual and textual analysis for understanding. In fact, to provide us with a critical vocabulary particular to comics, we’ll begin with a couple of chapters from Scott McCloud’s Understanding Comics.  In addition to our attention to the form of various examples of “sequential art,” we will study the political implications of works such as Alison Bechdel’s Fun Home, Gene Luen Yang’s & Sonny Liew’s The Shadow Hero, and Mat Johnson’s & Warren Pleece’s Incognegro. That is, part of our discussion of these texts will take up topics dealing with race, class, gender, and sexuality, among other issues.

For more information, please view this short video clip: https://youtu.be/8jBJA3AETEU.

English 174C Narratives of Media, Technology, and Community
Contemporary American Fiction
Prof. Carruth

Examines fiction of living U.S.-based writers, including Don DeLillo, Junot Díaz, Jennifer Egan, and Ruth Ozeki. Considers major literary forms and movements of past century: modernism, postmodernism, science fiction, realism. Also addresses how contemporary American writers engage with the innovations and ramifications of media, technology, and local vs. global community.

For more information, please view this short video clip: https://youtu.be/d-AwDOuGJsw.

CREATIVE WRITING

English M138.1 Writing the Television Drama Pilot
Topics in Creative Writing
Prof. Moyer

In this creative writing workshop, we’ll practice writing television drama. Students will outline and begin to draft their own TV drama pilot script as well as give feedback on classmates’ work. No critical or creative experience with TV writing, specifically, is needed for this workshop. English majors curious to learn more about writing in a pop-culture, commercial context (where “making great art” may not be the goal of the people paying the bills—a challenge even Shakespeare faced) are as welcome as aspiring TV writers.

English M138.2 Multiethnic Creative Non-fiction
Topics in Creative Writing
Prof. Poddar

This is an intensive workshop on the reading and writing of creative non-fiction -- the personal essay in particular and different sub-genres within, including the travel essay, the immigrant essay, cultural criticism -- that negotiate issues of race, ethnicity, and migration, in addition to universal aesthetic concerns. In addition to assigned readings, students will write and peer-review short creative non-fiction pieces of their fellow-students on a weekly basis. They’ll write two longer essays for the course too. Course goals: cultivate a regular writing practice, recognize strengths & weaknesses in a raw draft, think revision strategies and develop sound meta/critical skills toward reading multiethnic literary narratives.

English M138.3 Life Skills: The Art of the Interview
Topics in Creative Writing
Prof. Grobel

How to prepare to talk with people; learning to listen; knowing when to encourage, to probe, to change subjects. Analyzing what celebrities and writers have to say. Structuring a conversation for publication. Understanding the nature of freelancing. Studying magazines for content, poetry for inspiration, books for resource.

The skills of an interviewer encompass a broad range of talents: You must be able to converse like a talk show host, think like a writer, understand subtext like a psychologist, have an ear like a musician, be able to select the best parts like an editor, and put it together like a playwright.

As two former students described this seminar: “It was about learning how to communicate. It was about confronting new comfort levels. It was about self-confidence.” “There's something about the interview process that doesn't make you feel so small or alone anymore. It's a way that lets you feel connected to someone who may have seemed unapproachable or incomprehensible. More than just ‘How to interview,’ in the process of teaching us how to articulate someone else's voice, you've helped me to develop my own.”