CoursesCourses for the English Major

The Department of English offers a wide variety of courses at the general and advanced levels. Courses are divided into the following sections:

0-99 Lower Division Courses (Freshman, Sophomore)
100-199
Upper Division Courses (Junior, Senior)
200 & above
Graduate Courses

Summer 2019

Lower Division Courses in English

Please note that only English 4W is applicable to the English major and minor.

Critical Reading and Writing

English 4W / Instructor TBD

Introduction to literary analysis, with close reading and carefully written exposition of selections from principal modes of literature: poetry, prose fiction, and drama. Minimum of 15 to 20 pages of revised writing.

 

Fulfills Writing II requirement.

Introduction to Creative Writing

English 20W.2 / Prof. Wang

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.

 

Fulfills Writing II requirement. Not open to students with credit for English 20.

Shakespeare

Online Course
English 90 / Prof. Allen

Survey of Shakespeare’s plays, including comedies, tragedies, and histories, selected to represent Shakespeare’s breadth, artistic progress, and total dramatic achievement.

 

Not open for credit to English majors or students with credit for course 150A or 150B.

Upper Division Courses in English

Elective and Writing Practicum Courses

Analytical Essay

English 110A / Prof. Stephan

In this course, you will learn to build on your skills and abilities as a writer of literary and cultural analyses. You’ll find ways to ask richer literary questions, develop more nuanced analyses of complex texts, and shape your own voice as a writer. Academic writing conventions and expectations are discipline-specific: an Economics major, a History major, and a Neurobiology major will find that good writing means something different in each of their disciplines, and the same is true of literary study. This course will help you to understand and use our conventions and expectations for excellent literary analysis. We’ll focus on literary arguments and begin with this basic question: what constitutes a good, rich, complex question in literary analysis? What makes a substantial topic that might lead to a top-notch persuasive argument? Because good writing (and thus good argumentation) is also a process, we will practice creation, revision, contemplation, and editing, as well as seeking and giving feedback.

This course counts for the NEW Professional Writing Minor.

Literatures in English Before 1500

The Middle Ages Go To Hollywood

Medievalisms
English 149 / Bellairs

Kings, knights, wizards, and… Mel Gibson? The Middle Ages occupy an interestingly contradictory place in the modern cultural imagination: were they a golden age of chivalry and heroism, or primitive, backwards, and even dirty? In this course, we’ll look at representations of the Medieval in popular media, and consider what those representations have to say about the Middle Ages and about our own culture. We’ll focus on films and TV shows, which could include BraveheartKing Arthur, The Seventh Seal, A Knight’s Tale, Monty Python and the Holy Grail, Army of Darkness, Vikings, or The Last Kingdom. 

Literatures in English 1500-1700

Shakespeare: Major Plays

Online Course
English 150C / Prof. Little

This online upper-division course concentrates on some of Shakespeare’s major plays, taking us on a journey from the beginning to the end of Shakespeare’s illustrious playwriting career while also asking us to think not just about individual plays but what “Shakespeare” means to us popularly, historically, intellectually, politically, etc. The object of this course is for you not to just take in some short lectures but give back to the course by bringing to it a wealth of other sources—from YouTube to the Bible to videogames, from networked editions and online encyclopedias to databases and video streaming (whatever you can find)—in order to have a lively and learning exchange about Shakespeare.  In other words, while we will focus on individual plays (five of them), we will also be asked to think about Shakespeare in the context of broader and, perhaps for us, more urgent topics, such as how Shakespeare fits (or doesn’t) into conversations about women, feminism, race, religion, pop culture, etc.

Literatures in English 1700-1850

Jane Austen and her Peers

Online Course
English 163C / Prof. Mellor

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.

American Literature, 1776 to 1832

English 166B / Prof. Salway

Historical survey of American literatures from Revolution through early republic, with emphasis on genres that reflect systematic attempts to create representative national literature and attention to American ethnic, gender, and postcolonial perspectives.

Literatures in English 1850-Present

Chicana/Chicano Literature from Mexican Revolution to el Movimiento

English M105B /Prof. Lopez

This course looks at the emergence of contemporary notions of chicanismo, or Chicana/o identity, asking what it means to be politically conscious and what role literature plays in that process.  We’ll survey significant works of Chicana/o literature from the middle of the last century, from the waves of migration following the Mexican Revolution through the consciousness raising of the Chicano Civil Rights Movement (el movimiento), thinking about the relationship between Mexican American politics and aesthetics, investigating how chicanismo continues to evolve in concert with the wider US civil rights movement.

The New York Underground in Film, Music and Literature 1955-1985

Literary Cities
English 119 / Prof. Stefans

This course examines the gritty realities and artistic glories of New York from the mid-50s to the mid-80s. This is the period that saw the emergence of Beat writers such as Allen Ginsberg and William S. Burroughs, rebel feature filmmakers such as John Cassavetes, Martin Scorsese and Spike Lee, the birth of the Black Arts Movement with Amiri Baraka, new voices for the women’s poetry in Anne Waldman and Eileen Myles, the rise of punk music with Patti Smith and others, and, prior to and during the AIDs crisis, new forms of queer sensibility in writing and art in Joe Brainard, Keith Haring, David Wojnarowicz and others. This is a New York that many say doesn’t exist any longer— a city that often teetered on the border of chaos but bubbled with a creativity often coming from the “underground,” whether that be of avant-garde artists, people living on the edge of respectability (such as hustlers, punks and drug addicts), or people marginalized by dominant cultural norms.Films include two early features by Martin Scorcese, Mean Streets and Taxi Driver, the classic Midnight Cowboy, Spike Lee’s controversial Do the Right Thing, and groundbreaking experimental short films and videos. Fiction and memoirs that take you on the “wild side” (in Lou Reed’s phrase) of New York include short novels by Burroughs, Hubert Selby Jr. and Jay McInerney along with Jim Carroll’s The Basketball Diaries, Please Kill Me: The Uncensored Oral History of Punk and Close to the Knives: A Memoir of Disintegration by David Wojnarowicz. We’ll also listen to and discuss some of what was happening in the music scenes during this period, notably 50s jazz, the folk revival of the 60s, the birth of punk music in the 70s and early hip hop and the “new wave” in the early 80s.

Grading for this course is based on the attentive completion of weekly writing assignments. Given the short amount of time for the course, there will be no final paper.

Octavia Butler’s Afrofuturism

Individual Authors
English 139.1 / Prof. Streeter

This class focuses on the work of the late Octavia Butler (1947-2006), one of America’s most prominent science fiction writers, and as a Black woman, a rarity in that literary genre. “Afrofuturism” refers to the Black perspective on the politics, aesthetics, and cultural aspects of science, science fiction and technology. Books include the graphic novel adaptation of Butler’s masterpiece Kindred, a story of a contemporary woman transported back in time and space to a plantation in Maryland. We will also read Butler’s classic trilogy Lilith’s Brood (Dawn, Adulthood Rites and Imago) currently being adapted into a television series by director Ava DuVernay.

This course is not open for credit to students who completed English 115E in Summer 2017.

The Feminist Resistance and Resistant Feminism of Margaret Atwood

Individual Authors
English 139.2 / Prof. Miller

Fifty years into her literary career, Margaret Atwood is trendier than ever. In this era of binge-watchable TV and an American political landscape that looks more like a dystopia every day, Atwood’s The Handmaid’s Tale has re-emerged as a prescient warning against extremist patriarchy, its titular red-clad and white-bonneted handmaidens becoming the iconic representatives of the feminist resistance.  And yet, Atwood has always been aggressively and explicitly resistant to feminism as a label for herself and her work. In this class, we will investigate and attempt to reconcile this tension between the author and her fiction, so much of which directly contends with the continuous silencing and systemic oppression of women. Atwood’s career is long (and ongoing!), and her body of work is extensive; as such, we will read a few particularly illustrative novels, spanning several decades. Likely texts include: The Edible Woman (1969); The Robber Bride (1993); The Penelopiad (2005) ; and, of course, The Handmaid’s Tale (1985).

American Literature, 1865 to 1900

English 170A / Prof. Mehlman

In this course, we will journey through the turbulent, strange years between the end of the Civil War—blood fresh on the ground—and the turn of the Twentieth Century, the cusp of a new type of modernity. We will be journeying through the aftermath of war, the stakes and agonies of racial conflict, the rise of the American novel, the growth of the city, the burgeoning of literary realism and naturalism (the latter a bloody realism), and the anxious signs of the incoming century. Among others, we will read Rebecca Harding Davis’s foray into the dark iron mines, Walt Whitman’s ecstatic, cosmic erotica, William Dean Howells’ frustrated attempt to represent the real, Stephen Crane’s lunar depiction of crowds, accidents and the city, Sarah Orne Jewett’s small and weird worlds, Charles Chesnutt’s verbally dextrous conjure tales, and Mark Twain’s attempt to invent an American idiom in a work far more complex than it seemed the first time you read it. These are strange and exciting years for American literature.

20th Century Formations: Gender, Race, Sexuality, and the Law in American Literature, 1900-1945

English 170B / Prof. Clark

The first half of the Twentieth Century witnessed the arrival of the U.S. on the global stage and the trauma of two world wars. But life within the U.S. also underwent radical revisions in its political, social, and economic structure, revisions that appear relevant again in the contemporary moment. Beginning with Plessy v. Ferguson (1896), which legalized segregation, the Nineteenth Amendment, which granted women the right to vote, and the Immigration and Naturalization Act of 1924, which radically restricted immigration to the U.S., alongside major cultural movements like the Harlem Renaissance, the period oversaw dramatic shifts in U.S. culture and law that radically restructured U.S. social life. In this class, we will explore how literature responds to legal, cultural, and political developments in the period. We will pay attention particularly to how racial and sexual minorities were shaped by public life—but also how they shaped the public around them. Through authors such as Willa Cather, W.E.B. Du Bois, Sui Sin Far, Chester Himes, Claude McKay, Nella Larsen, Sherwood Anderson, Jesús Colón, and others, we will excavate the moments of resistance that literature made possible during a time of upheaval, isolationism, and skepticism of difference.

U.S. Fiction After the End of History

Contemporary American Fiction
English 174C / Prof. Huehls

The course will explore U.S. fiction written from 1989 to the present, asking how changes in technology, global capitalism, and notion of identity have played out in contemporary U.S. fiction. Possible authors include Jeffrey Eugenides, David Foster Wallace, Karen Yamashita, Colson Whitehead, Jennifer Egan, Ben Lerner, and Tao Lin.

Gender, Race, Ethnicity, Disability, and Sexuality Studies

Chicana/Chicano Literature from Mexican Revolution to el Movimiento

English M105B /Prof. Lopez

This course looks at the emergence of contemporary notions of chicanismo, or Chicana/o identity, asking what it means to be politically conscious and what role literature plays in that process.  We’ll survey significant works of Chicana/o literature from the middle of the last century, from the waves of migration following the Mexican Revolution through the consciousness raising of the Chicano Civil Rights Movement (el movimiento), thinking about the relationship between Mexican American politics and aesthetics, investigating how chicanismo continues to evolve in concert with the wider US civil rights movement.

Tattoo as Text: Pacific Islander and Native American Stories in Ink, Skin, and Blood

English 106 /Prof. Warren

What story does your body tell? What stories have you (mis)read through your assumptions about the ink, skin, and blood of other bodies? The Proto Polynesian word “tātau” (tattoo) is both a noun, the physical mark inscribed on the body, and a verb, to write. Rooted in this etymology, this course will examine representations of Native Pacific Islander and Native American bodies, treating them as texts that tell the stories of individuals, communities, and ecosystems. The Pacific Islands and the United States are home to myriad bodies, a complex amalgamation of indigeneities, races, nationalities, gender identities, sexualities, and socioeconomic classes. What happens when the ink, skin, or blood of a single body come to represent larger cultural, intellectual, religious, or political narratives? We will analyze a wide range of sources—fiction, film, graphic novel, painting, photography, essay, chant, rap music, and even a beauty pageant—to examine the ways contemporary Native peoples navigate the overlapping readings of their bodies as texts. Possible authors and artists include: Sia Figiel, Sloane Leong, Bobby Holcomb, ku‘ualoha ho‘omanawanui, Albert Wendt, Matika Wilbur, Adrienne Keahi Pao, and the Columbia River Intertribal Fish Commission.

This course qualifies as foreign literature in translation. English majors may apply this course either to an upper-division major requirement, or to their major foreign language/literature requirement, but not both.

Cyborgs, Androids, and Bots: Science Fiction’s Speculative Futures

English 115E / Prof. Firunts-Hakopian

How do bots, cyborgs, artificial intelligence, and otherwise “nonhuman” agents transform the category of the “human”? What kinds of futures does science fiction imagine for the “human”? How do those futures code the coordinates of race, gender, sexuality, ability, and class? English 115E considers these questions through a selective survey of science fiction from the twentieth-century to the present. In addition to examining literary texts and critical essays, the course will incorporate cinema, television, and digital media. Readings and films will include work by Karel Čapek, micha cárdenas, Wendy Chun, Philip K. Dick, Donna Haraway, Isaac Asimov, Kara Keeling, Janelle Monáe, and Greg Pak.

Octavia Butler’s Afrofuturism

Individual Authors
English 139.1 / Prof. Streeter

This class focuses on the work of the late Octavia Butler (1947-2006), one of America’s most prominent science fiction writers, and as a Black woman, a rarity in that literary genre. “Afrofuturism” refers to the Black perspective on the politics, aesthetics, and cultural aspects of science, science fiction and technology. Books include the graphic novel adaptation of Butler’s masterpiece Kindred, a story of a contemporary woman transported back in time and space to a plantation in Maryland. We will also read Butler’s classic trilogy Lilith’s Brood (Dawn, Adulthood Rites and Imago) currently being adapted into a television series by director Ava DuVernay.

This course is not open for credit to students who completed English 115E in Summer 2017.

The Feminist Resistance and Resistant Feminism of Margaret Atwood

Individual Authors
English 139.2 / Prof. Miller

Fifty years into her literary career, Margaret Atwood is trendier than ever. In this era of binge-watchable TV and an American political landscape that looks more like a dystopia every day, Atwood’s The Handmaid’s Tale has re-emerged as a prescient warning against extremist patriarchy, its titular red-clad and white-bonneted handmaidens becoming the iconic representatives of the feminist resistance.  And yet, Atwood has always been aggressively and explicitly resistant to feminism as a label for herself and her work. In this class, we will investigate and attempt to reconcile this tension between the author and her fiction, so much of which directly contends with the continuous silencing and systemic oppression of women. Atwood’s career is long (and ongoing!), and her body of work is extensive; as such, we will read a few particularly illustrative novels, spanning several decades. Likely texts include: The Edible Woman (1969); The Robber Bride (1993); The Penelopiad (2005) ; and, of course, The Handmaid’s Tale (1985).

Jane Austen and her Peers

Online Course
English 163C / Prof. Mellor

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.

20th Century Formations: Gender, Race, Sexuality, and the Law in American Literature, 1900-1945

English 170B / Prof. Clark

The first half of the Twentieth Century witnessed the arrival of the U.S. on the global stage and the trauma of two world wars. But life within the U.S. also underwent radical revisions in its political, social, and economic structure, revisions that appear relevant again in the contemporary moment. Beginning with Plessy v. Ferguson (1896), which legalized segregation, the Nineteenth Amendment, which granted women the right to vote, and the Immigration and Naturalization Act of 1924, which radically restricted immigration to the U.S., alongside major cultural movements like the Harlem Renaissance, the period oversaw dramatic shifts in U.S. culture and law that radically restructured U.S. social life. In this class, we will explore how literature responds to legal, cultural, and political developments in the period. We will pay attention particularly to how racial and sexual minorities were shaped by public life—but also how they shaped the public around them. Through authors such as Willa Cather, W.E.B. Du Bois, Sui Sin Far, Chester Himes, Claude McKay, Nella Larsen, Sherwood Anderson, Jesús Colón, and others, we will excavate the moments of resistance that literature made possible during a time of upheaval, isolationism, and skepticism of difference.

Imperial, Transnational, and Postcolonial Studies

Chicana/Chicano Literature from Mexican Revolution to el Movimiento

English M105B /Prof. Lopez

This course looks at the emergence of contemporary notions of chicanismo, or Chicana/o identity, asking what it means to be politically conscious and what role literature plays in that process.  We’ll survey significant works of Chicana/o literature from the middle of the last century, from the waves of migration following the Mexican Revolution through the consciousness raising of the Chicano Civil Rights Movement (el movimiento), thinking about the relationship between Mexican American politics and aesthetics, investigating how chicanismo continues to evolve in concert with the wider US civil rights movement.

Tattoo as Text: Pacific Islander and Native American Stories in Ink, Skin, and Blood

English 106 /Prof. Warren

What story does your body tell? What stories have you (mis)read through your assumptions about the ink, skin, and blood of other bodies? The Proto Polynesian word “tātau” (tattoo) is both a noun, the physical mark inscribed on the body, and a verb, to write. Rooted in this etymology, this course will examine representations of Native Pacific Islander and Native American bodies, treating them as texts that tell the stories of individuals, communities, and ecosystems. The Pacific Islands and the United States are home to myriad bodies, a complex amalgamation of indigeneities, races, nationalities, gender identities, sexualities, and socioeconomic classes. What happens when the ink, skin, or blood of a single body come to represent larger cultural, intellectual, religious, or political narratives? We will analyze a wide range of sources—fiction, film, graphic novel, painting, photography, essay, chant, rap music, and even a beauty pageant—to examine the ways contemporary Native peoples navigate the overlapping readings of their bodies as texts. Possible authors and artists include: Sia Figiel, Sloane Leong, Bobby Holcomb, ku‘ualoha ho‘omanawanui, Albert Wendt, Matika Wilbur, Adrienne Keahi Pao, and the Columbia River Intertribal Fish Commission.

This course qualifies as foreign literature in translation. English majors may apply this course either to an upper-division major requirement, or to their major foreign language/literature requirement, but not both.

Cosmopolitanism at Home and Abroad

Nationalism and Transnationalism
English 134 / Prof. Mott

In addition to themes identified by students, the course will pursue themes such as the estrangement of home as simultaneously liberating and traumatic, self as other and other as self, identification as a transcultural and transnational dynamic and force, the tensions between nationalism, globalization, and cosmopolitanism, history and tradition as confining, determining, and/or stabilizing, reassuring forces in the lives of people and cultures, and how “every force evolves a form”: narrative forms and (dis)location.

Texts & Films may include: the Ta-nahisi Coates Black Panther & Ryan Coogler’s Black Panther, Disney’s Lilo & Stitch, Alexander Payne’s The Descendants, and Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s stories.

American Literature, 1776 to 1832

English 166B / Prof. Salway

Historical survey of American literatures from Revolution through early republic, with emphasis on genres that reflect systematic attempts to create representative national literature and attention to American ethnic, gender, and postcolonial perspectives.

Genre Studies, Interdisciplinary Studies, Critical Theory

Detective Fiction

English 115D / Prof. Allmendinger

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

Cyborgs, Androids, and Bots: Science Fiction’s Speculative Futures

English 115E / Prof. Firunts-Hakopian

How do bots, cyborgs, artificial intelligence, and otherwise “nonhuman” agents transform the category of the “human”? What kinds of futures does science fiction imagine for the “human”? How do those futures code the coordinates of race, gender, sexuality, ability, and class? English 115E considers these questions through a selective survey of science fiction from the twentieth-century to the present. In addition to examining literary texts and critical essays, the course will incorporate cinema, television, and digital media. Readings and films will include work by Karel Čapek, micha cárdenas, Wendy Chun, Philip K. Dick, Donna Haraway, Isaac Asimov, Kara Keeling, Janelle Monáe, and Greg Pak.

The New York Underground in Film, Music and Literature 1955-1985

Literary Cities
English 119 / Prof. Stefans

This course examines the gritty realities and artistic glories of New York from the mid-50s to the mid-80s. This is the period that saw the emergence of Beat writers such as Allen Ginsberg and William S. Burroughs, rebel feature filmmakers such as John Cassavetes, Martin Scorsese and Spike Lee, the birth of the Black Arts Movement with Amiri Baraka, new voices for the women’s poetry in Anne Waldman and Eileen Myles, the rise of punk music with Patti Smith and others, and, prior to and during the AIDs crisis, new forms of queer sensibility in writing and art in Joe Brainard, Keith Haring, David Wojnarowicz and others. This is a New York that many say doesn’t exist any longer— a city that often teetered on the border of chaos but bubbled with a creativity often coming from the “underground,” whether that be of avant-garde artists, people living on the edge of respectability (such as hustlers, punks and drug addicts), or people marginalized by dominant cultural norms.Films include two early features by Martin Scorcese, Mean Streets and Taxi Driver, the classic Midnight Cowboy, Spike Lee’s controversial Do the Right Thing, and groundbreaking experimental short films and videos. Fiction and memoirs that take you on the “wild side” (in Lou Reed’s phrase) of New York include short novels by Burroughs, Hubert Selby Jr. and Jay McInerney along with Jim Carroll’s The Basketball Diaries, Please Kill Me: The Uncensored Oral History of Punk and Close to the Knives: A Memoir of Disintegration by David Wojnarowicz. We’ll also listen to and discuss some of what was happening in the music scenes during this period, notably 50s jazz, the folk revival of the 60s, the birth of punk music in the 70s and early hip hop and the “new wave” in the early 80s.

Grading for this course is based on the attentive completion of weekly writing assignments. Given the short amount of time for the course, there will be no final paper.

Octavia Butler’s Afrofuturism

Individual Authors
English 139.1 / Prof. Streeter

This class focuses on the work of the late Octavia Butler (1947-2006), one of America’s most prominent science fiction writers, and as a Black woman, a rarity in that literary genre. “Afrofuturism” refers to the Black perspective on the politics, aesthetics, and cultural aspects of science, science fiction and technology. Books include the graphic novel adaptation of Butler’s masterpiece Kindred, a story of a contemporary woman transported back in time and space to a plantation in Maryland. We will also read Butler’s classic trilogy Lilith’s Brood (Dawn, Adulthood Rites and Imago) currently being adapted into a television series by director Ava DuVernay.

This course is not open for credit to students who completed English 115E in Summer 2017.

The Feminist Resistance and Resistant Feminism of Margaret Atwood

Individual Authors
English 139.2 / Prof. Miller

Fifty years into her literary career, Margaret Atwood is trendier than ever. In this era of binge-watchable TV and an American political landscape that looks more like a dystopia every day, Atwood’s The Handmaid’s Tale has re-emerged as a prescient warning against extremist patriarchy, its titular red-clad and white-bonneted handmaidens becoming the iconic representatives of the feminist resistance.  And yet, Atwood has always been aggressively and explicitly resistant to feminism as a label for herself and her work. In this class, we will investigate and attempt to reconcile this tension between the author and her fiction, so much of which directly contends with the continuous silencing and systemic oppression of women. Atwood’s career is long (and ongoing!), and her body of work is extensive; as such, we will read a few particularly illustrative novels, spanning several decades. Likely texts include: The Edible Woman (1969); The Robber Bride (1993); The Penelopiad (2005) ; and, of course, The Handmaid’s Tale (1985).

Jane Austen and her Peers

Online Course
English 163C / Prof. Mellor

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.

U.S. Fiction After the End of History

Contemporary American Fiction
English 174C / Prof. Huehls

The course will explore U.S. fiction written from 1989 to the present, asking how changes in technology, global capitalism, and notion of identity have played out in contemporary U.S. fiction. Possible authors include Jeffrey Eugenides, David Foster Wallace, Karen Yamashita, Colson Whitehead, Jennifer Egan, Ben Lerner, and Tao Lin.

Creative Writing Workshops

Please note that unlike Fall/Winter/Spring creative writing workshops, Summer workshops do not require an additional application or instructor consent.

Creative Writing: Writing for the Internet

English M138.1 / Prof. Snelson

This creative writing course explores new genres of writing on the internet. We follow emerging trends in digital poetics to develop new ways of creating works that are equally likely to appear on Instagram, through online video games, in a chat story, or even printed on demand in paper format. Studying digital platforms and formats alongside contemporary art and letters, we’ll reimagine experimental writing practices through today’s emerging genres. How might Twitter facilitate a serial narrative? What does Snapchat demand of poetry? To what literary purposes might be direct webcomics, memes, or video games? Using a collective workshop format, we’ll engage in a series of writing experiments that attempt to find some of our own poetic responses to today’s technological environment. No previous training in creative writing or new media is required.Not open to student who took English M138 with Prof. Snelson in Spring 2019.

Creative Writing: Three Act Screenplay

English M138.2 / Prof. Ekimyan

Throughout the course students will develop an original screenplay, learning how to craft story, plot, character, dialogue, theme, and tone, ultimately enabling them to produce a complete Three Act Outline and a polished First Act of their script.

Not open to student who took English M138 with Prof. Ekimyan in Summer 2018.

Creative Writing: Writing Migration (CANCELLED)

English M138.3 / Prof. Wilson

No longer being offered in Summer 2019.

Creative Writing: Literary and Cultural Criticism in the Public Sphere

English M138.4 / Prof. Newman

Students will learn how to write creative, compelling literary and cultural criticism for a variety of audiences across newspapers, online magazines, digital journals and websites. Reading essays from a range of current critics, students will learn how to craft strong ledes, identify hooks and channel their academic writing and analytical skills for a mainstream audience. Working from the structures they’ve gleaned from these examples, students will write short critical pieces on literature, film, television and music. For their final project, students will write a long form piece of criticism on an object or issue of their choosing. Across the course, students will learn how to define their unique critical voice, how to identify and connect with audiences, and how to pitch pieces to an editor.

This course is an acceptable upper-division course for the minor in Professional Writing.

Not open to students who took English M138 with Prof. Newman in Fall 2018.

Creative Writing: Ecopoetry and the Poetics of Place

English M138.5 / Lang

This course will address representations of place in poetry.  These representations will consider our ecological, urban, and suburban surroundings, as well as concepts of home, foreignness, domesticity, wilderness, and travel.  Special attention will be paid to L.A.’s environment.  Students will write poems weekly, which we’ll workshop on a regular basis, while reading a diverse range of poems written in English from the sixteenth century to the present.  Additionally, to commemorate the 50th anniversary of UCLA’s Poetry Reading Series, a number of our assigned readings will be drawn from the rich history of that archive. Students are expected to contribute to discussion as if this were a seminar.  In addition to an accumulative journal, students will prepare and submit a chapbook of their work.

This course is an acceptable upper-division course for the minor in Literature and the Environment.