Recent offerings include African American Women Writers, Evolutionary Theories and Narrative, Sentimental Novel, V. Deloria and Native American Cultural Values. Repeatable.
This seminar examines autobiographical genres, with a focus on modern and contemporary literature. We will discuss key theoretical questions in autobiographical theory, including: What defines the subject of autobiography? What is distinctive about autobiography, testimony, memoir, diary, and other forms of self-writing? What determines "truth" in autobiography and what happens when the autobiographical "contract" between reader and writer is broken? Why have forms of self-writing been of particular interest to historically marginalized groups and how have writers from these groups shaped the genre? How have autobiographical forms resisted the primacy of the individual? The course will also serve as an introduction to archive studies; students will have a chance to do archival scholarship at Special Collections as well as in online archives as they develop their seminar essays.