A & L

Arts & Letters (A&L) courses create meaningful opportunities for students to engage actively in the modes of inquiry that define a discipline. Courses are broad in scope and demonstrably liberal in nature (that is, courses that promote open inquiry from a variety of perspectives). Though some courses may focus on specialized subjects or approaches, there will be a substantial course content locating that subject in the broader context of the major issues of the discipline. Qualifying courses will not focus on teaching basic skills but will require the application or engagement of those skills through analysis and interpretation.

22768

Rovak, Angela

In this course, you will learn how to identify, interpret, and form arguments about the elements of literary fiction. We will focus on the literary representations of black girlhood in texts that span the 20th and 21st centuries. In ENG 104: Introduction to Fiction we will read the stories of... (read more)

22772

Tiwari, Avinnash

Through this course, students develop analytical skills that will allow them to think, write, and speak intelligently about fiction. The course addresses basic questions about the nature of prose narrative and the interrelated activities of reading, writing, and interpretation. What is a story,... (read more)

22773

Carroll, Anna

This course offers a thorough introduction to the art of poetry, from Shakespeare to Kendrick Lamar, and considers the aesthetic and cultural investments we... (read more)

26950

Wojcik, Daniel

Introduces the study of beliefs about the supernatural by examining diverse approaches to the description and analysis of belief traditions and religious... (read more)

27044

Filo, Gina

Many of Shakespeare's early plays are romantic comedies, a genre that was and remains easy to dismiss as simplistic and idealized. However, under the... (read more)

27046

Laskaya, C. Anne

This course provides students an exposure to English and French literature important for the English literary tradition, in modern translations, from the very... (read more)

27047

Barter, Faith

This course is a survey of writings by African American authors of the 19th and 20th centuries. Studying fiction, essays, and... (read more)

27135

Wilde, Jenée

Aliens, monsters, killer robots, mutants.... Such metaphors may express cultural fears of the “other” that underlie social prejudice, intolerance, and... (read more)

27136

Mastrostefano, Stephanie

This course will introduce you to the formal and narrative study of film. We will focus on film history, the technology of film production, and the methodology... (read more)

27691

Li, David

This is an introductory class to literature. As such, it emphasizes the double meanings inherent in literature’s etymological origin, “literacy.” We shall develop the competency to  “read” and “write” about the kind of texts that are considered “literary,” and more specifically about a type of... (read more)

27790

Myers, Kate

This survey of world literature will focus on free thinkers from Europe to the Americas. We will trace their ideas of myth and magic, metaphysics and natural science,... (read more)

12150

Smars, Bjorn

Actual reading lists vary significantly depending on the expertise and teaching philosophy of the instructor, but all sections of the course offer students a broad introduction to the study of literary fiction. Whether readings focus on the stories and novels of major writers or on works from a... (read more)

12151

Kovalchuk, Anna; Huang, Helen

Actual reading lists vary significantly depending on the expertise and teaching philosophy of the instructor, but all sections of the course offer students a broad introduction to the study of literary fiction. Whether readings focus on the stories and novels of major writers or on works from a... (read more)

12152

Kovalchuk, Anna

Actual reading lists vary significantly depending on the expertise and teaching philosophy of the instructor, but all sections of the course offer students a broad introduction to the study of literary fiction. Whether readings focus on the stories and novels of major writers or on works from a... (read more)

12153

Wright, Paula

Poetry ENG 106 is designed to provide students with a basic understanding of the formal properties of poetry in English. Through careful analysis poems by major writers, such as Plath, Whitman, Dickinson, McKay, Lee, Bishop, Brooks and many others, students will be challenged to explain not only... (read more)

12154

Shankman, Steven

We will read foundational works from three different ancient cultures: China, Greece, and Israel. We will pay particular attention to the question of the kinds of values that these foundational works were meant to instill in their ancient audiences. What does each culture have to say about... (read more)

12160

Dawson, Brent

Students read, discuss, and critique Shakespeare's early comedies and tragedies. Plays covered generally include (but are not limited to) A Mid-Summer Night's Dream, The Merchant of Venice, Henry IV (Part One), Richard II, Henry V, Julius Caesar... (read more)

12165

Whalan, Mark

This course is a survey of writings by African American authors. Studying fiction, essays, and poetry, we'll close read representative texts to identify formal and thematic elements that characterize the African American literary tradition. We will consider how these works exemplify and... (read more)

12497

An introduction to contemporary folklore studies, with emphasis on the meanings of stories, rituals, festivals, body art, subcultures, the supernatural, street art, Internet folklore, and other forms of vernacular expression as these relate to a diversity of social identities and cultural... (read more)

16078

Simnitt, Emily

What does it mean to be at home? How does it feel to lose one's home?

And how do ideas of home and homelessness shape our sense of self or security? This course builds on these questions to look at a collection of literary works that focus explicitly on the idea of home in American culture... (read more)

16083

Kelp-Stebbins, Kate

Comics and graphic narratives are uniquely suited to exploring cultural location because they transform the storytelling unit of the page into a space of representation. The comics page graphically negotiates dynamics of home and away, self and other, as well as race and culture. In this course... (read more)

16455

Brown, Kirby

In 1968, Kiowa writer N. Scott Momaday's House Made of Dawn was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for American literature. Momaday's award signaled for many the “arrival” of Native authors to the American literary scene, and ushered in an unprecedented era of Native literary production widely... (read more)

16456

Myers, Kate

Shakespeare’s later plays seem to be keenly aware of the power and influence of theatre. In selfreflexive characters we might categorize as lovers, fools, and madmen, his plays confront the political and social concerns of his original audiences, concerns that continue to challenge us today,... (read more)

16778

This course is an introduction to film and media studies and various methods of critical analysis. In this course, we will see that there are many productive ways of thinking about movies and many approaches we can use to analyze them. These approaches include the study of narrative structure,... (read more)

16943

McGuffie, Allison

This course studies works of film and media as representational objects that engage with communities identified by intersectional categories including sex,... (read more)

16950

Brousseau, Marcel

As an introductory survey, this course emphasizes the formal, thematic, and cultural diversity of Latinx literature. We will read novels, poetry, short stories, and comics, among other media, by authors from a range of identities—including Mexican American, Central American, Cuban American, and... (read more)

16967

Study of the history of institutions and industries that shape production and reception of film and media.

(read more)
40808

Vázquez, David

ENG 392 is the second of two-part, upper division chronological survey of the American novel from its beginnings in the 19th century to the present. ENG 392 covers the period from the early 20th century to the present. No prerequisites are required, but students should be capable of advanced... (read more)

40890

Bayless, Martha

This course is an examination of the period often considered the most “magical,” the Middle Ages. Looking at the practices of medieval western Europe, particularly Britain, we will examine how medieval culture defined magic, what they hoped to achieve by practicing (or forbidding) magic, and how... (read more)

42073

Introduces students to the theories and methods used in the study of folklore and popular culture; examines a diversity of approaches to the description and analysis of “common culture,” including popular narratives, legends, rituals, ethnic and gender stereotypes, carnivalesque events, fan... (read more)

42251

Clevinger, Kara

The novel as a newer literary genre was a powerful, even potentially dangerous force in the newly-formed American nation. One 1838 critic declared that “the object of novelists in general appears to be to seize the public mind, and hold it with a sort of enchantment.” What captivated and... (read more)

42419

Casimir, Ulrick

Focusing primarily on American/Hollywood filmmaking from the late 1960s through today, this course looks closely at the representation and function of African-Americans and women in film. Using both mainstream and independent films as our primary texts, we will explore how African-Americans and... (read more)

42420

Wilde, Jenée

Aliens, monsters, killer androids, mutants.... Such metaphors may express cultural fears of the “other” that underlie social prejudice, intolerance, and discrimination. But viewers and fans may also read against the grain of normative cinematic images, finding identity and affirmation in the... (read more)

42454

Brown, Kirby

In 1968, Kiowa writer N. Scott Momaday's House Made of Dawn was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for American literature. Momaday's award signaled for many the “arrival” of Native authors to the American literary scene, and ushered in an unprecedented era of Native literary production widely... (read more)

42458

Upton, Corbett

ENG 395 provides selective survey of contemporary literature between 1945 and the present. The course incorporates works of prose, poetry, and drama, and attends closely to philosophical, political, and cultural events that run parallel to developments in twentieth-century literary history. No... (read more)

42500

Driscoll, William

Have fun while satisfying your arts and learning requirement.  Explore your own creative side through discussion and group activities.  Read a variety of fantastic short stories from Kafka to contemporary Sci-Fi.


Earn your Arts & Letters requirement by peeking into some of the... (read more)

32001

Rovak, Angela

This course will focus on the literary representations of black girlhood. In ENG 104: Introduction to Fiction we will read the stories of young black women as they move through the difficult transition from childhood to adulthood. We will read novels and short stories that show a diversity of... (read more)

32002

Floyd, Courtney

In English 104, “Archetypes and Anarchy,” we will explore the basic elements of fiction via one of its most enduring forms: the fairy tale. As the course title indicates, we will begin by considering the archetype, a concept derived from Jungian psychology which refers to “a pervasive idea,... (read more)

32005

Graman, Claire

Today it’s easier than ever to access media through streaming services like Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon Prime, yet their selection of films made before 1980 is surprisingly sparse. Where are these classic films and why should we care? This course will introduce you to cinema studies, including... (read more)

32010

Myers, Kate

Late Shakespeare

In self-reflexive characters we might categorize as lovers, fools, and madmen, the later plays of Shakespeare confront the political and social concerns of his original audiences, concerns that continue to challenge us today, including issues of gender, race, class, and... (read more)

32013

Thorsson, Courtney

This course is a survey of writings by African American authors. Studying fiction, essays, and poetry, we will read representative texts to consider whether there are specific formal and thematic elements that characterize an African American literary tradition. We will consider how these texts... (read more)

32016

Gopal, Sangita

ENG 267, the third of three courses that study the historical evolution of cinema as an institution and as an art form from its origin, covers the time period from the “end” of the studio system in the 1960s to the present day. It may be taken individually or as part of a series (with ENG 265... (read more)

32027

Frank, David

In this course we will examine theories of reasoned-based argumentation in the oral mode, and then incorporate those theories into the practice of making effective speeches that advocate for particular positions on arguable issues of public concern. We will analyze and critique oral arguments as... (read more)

32030

This course introduces students to the manner in which South Africans have been represented through fiction, documentary, and experimental films from the pre-apartheid to the post-apartheid eras. We will focus specifically on representations of blackness in South Africa in order to understand... (read more)

32031

Miller, Quinn

This course introduces students to critical thinking about the historical and economic factors influencing film, media, and cultural production in Hollywood and in response to Hollywood. Unconventional textual and contextual dynamics, understood as queer history, are the focus of the course,... (read more)

35961

LaRiviere, Katie Jo

This course is designed to provide students with a basic understanding of the formal properties of poetry in English. Through careful analysis of poems by major writers, students will be challenged to explain not only what a given poem might mean to its readers, but also how a poem communicates... (read more)

35962

Brown, Kirby

In 1968, Kiowa writer N. Scott Momaday’s House Made of Dawn was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for American literature. Momaday’s award signaled for many the “arrival” of Native authors to the American literary scene, and ushered in an unprecedented era of Native literary production widely... (read more)

35971

Li, David

This class is a selective and sweeping reading of four novels that span from the 1920s to 2000. It covers the geographic regions of American northeast and the Deep South by authors of black, white, and Jewish descent. Nearly all of the texts on the reading list are classic and canonical 20th... (read more)

35974

LeMenager, Stephanie

This course begins with the question of what is the American novel? It is a question asked and answered by some of the most ingenious and challenging thinkers of the 20th century, who, as it turns out, were novelists. But for these thinkers who thought in the form of novels, the 20th century was... (read more)

36014

Wonham, Henry

This course is an introduction to drama, one of the major genres in literary studies. Students will read, discuss, and analyze plays from a variety of periods and national traditions in order to become familiar with the major styles, techniques, and conventions that characterize dramatic... (read more)

36757

Wood, Mary

In this online course, we will read four novels that span the time period from the early twentieth century to the present day, interpreting each novel in relation to its historical and cultural contexts. While the selected novels cannot fully represent the vast range of ethnically and culturally... (read more)

36784

Li, David

Reading Asian American texts as a form of cultural representation, the class will be concerned with the following:

  1. Where is Asian America? What are its geographical, social, and epistemological boundaries?
  2. What is Asian American? Is it a racial concept, cultural construct,... (read more)
22712

Wheeler, Elizabeth (Betsy)

Why do stories matter? In this class we will read novels of childhood and adolescence, both fantasy and realistic, and compare them to the stories that matter in our own lives and families. The novels come from India, England, South Korea, and the United States. By the end of the course you... (read more)

22713

Bostrom, Margaret

This course will address a theme within contemporary U.S. experimental literature. Course readings may include graphic novels, novels in verse, micro fiction, or narrative video games. We will address foundational questions about the nature of prose narrative by reading texts that push the... (read more)

22714

Rovak, Angela

This course will focus on the literary representations of black girlhood. In ENG 104: Introduction to Fiction we will read the stories of young black women as they move through the difficult transition from childhood to adulthood. We will read novels and short stories that show a diversity of... (read more)

22717

Saunders, Ben

This course is designed to provide students with a basic understanding of the formal properties of poetry in English. Through careful analysis of poems by major writers, students will be challenged to explain not only what a given poem might mean to its readers, but also how a poem communicates... (read more)

22719

Graman, Claire

This course will introduce you to cinema studies, including history, culture, analysis, theory, aesthetics, and production, through the lens of genre. Why are there certain genres of film and what do they say about our culture? By examining classic and contemporary films within the western,... (read more)

22726

Pyle, Forest

This course, which focuses on four of the later plays of Shakespeare’s career, is designed as an introduction to the language, themes, contexts, and implications of Shakespeare’s most mature work. Though our close reading of these plays will lead us to consider any number of the many topics... (read more)

22727

Curry, Elizabeth

This course will introduce students to literature that depicts ‘the environment’ in various ways: as resplendent landscape, as increasingly industrialized space, as ecologically compromised animal habitat, and as chemically altered agricultural swath. This course will read fiction, nonfiction,... (read more)

22731

Rust, Stephen

This is the second course in a three-term sequence that studies the evolution of cinema as an art form and economic and cultural institution. English 266 continues from the end of the silent film era early 1960s. The aim of the course is to develop interpretive skills relevant to the study of... (read more)

22742

Frank, David

Analysis and use of patterns of reasoning derived from the disciplines of rhetoric, informal logic, cognitive science, and the theory of argumentation.

(read more)
22746

Gopal, Sangita

Study of film and media as aesthetic objects that engage with communities identified by class, gender, race, ethnicity, and sexuality.

(read more)
26808

Shankman, Steven

English 108 is the second quarter of a year-long survey of World Literature, between antiquity and the modern period. In European literature, this period includes the Middle Ages and the Renaissance. Rather than sample a smattering of various texts from this period, we will read a single great... (read more)

26826

Warren, Joyce Pualani

What story does your body tell? Beyond the assumptions others may make based on physical appearance, or what you might convey through adornment, what narrative does your body perpetuate? The Proto Polynesian word “tatau” (tattoo) is both a noun, the physical mark inscribed on the body, and a... (read more)

26827

Li, David

This class is a sampling of American writing by its ethnic and racial minority writers. Generically speaking, we shall devote ourselves to prose fiction and non-fiction.

(read more)
26834

Brundan, Katherine

The English Novel: Subject, Object and Abject

This course circulates through the world of the novel by taking a slightly unusual perspective: that of subjects and objects. The rise of the novel goes hand-in-hand with a focus on objects and commodities that help construct the subject as a... (read more)

26842

Gazaille, Brian

Secret Agency: Navigating Race and Identity in Passing Fictions

While nineteenth-century America touted itself as a place where people could reinvent themselves as self-made, prosperous, fully enfranchised citizens, it was also the period when categories like race, gender, and class became... (read more)

26843

Bryant-Berg, Kristy

This course develops appreciation and understanding of 20th Century American novels by examining provocative samples exemplifying notable trends. We will explore both modernist roots reshaping the American novel and contemporary highlights challenging the novel’s form and complicating American... (read more)

26844

Wheeler, Elizabeth (Betsy)

One could say that most comics are about the human body, in all its variations, exaggerations, erotics, poses, powers, and vulnerabilities. This course looks at the human body in contemporary comics with particular attention to disability and gender. We’ll read 4 comics genres: anime, memoir,... (read more)

27607

Fickle, Tara

Asian American Comics

The growing acceptance of comics and graphic novels as “serious” literature owes much to the genre’s embrace as a powerful vehicle for memory, especially by minority writers seeking to showcase “non-normative” accounts of American life: the experiences of being gay,... (read more)

27672

Simnitt, Emily

What does it mean to be at home? How does it feel to lose one's home? And how do ideas of home and homelessness shape our sense of self or security? This course builds on these questions to look at a collection of literary works that focus explicitly on the idea of home in American culture. We'... (read more)

16001

Wacks, David

This course is an introduction to cultures of the Spanish-speaking world with an emphasis on comics and graphic novels. In this course we will learn about the graphic novel as an artistic vehicle for studying the history and cultures of Spain and Latin America (including the Latino US). There... (read more)

22202

Wheeler, Elizabeth (Betsy); Floyd, Courtney

Why do stories matter? In this class we will read novels of childhood and adolescence, both
fantasy and realistic, and compare them to the stories that matter in our own lives and
families. The novels come from India, England, South Korea, and the United States. By the
end of the... (read more)

22209

Wonham, Henry

ENG 106 is an introduction to one of the major genres in literary studies. Through careful analysis of poems by five major American writers—Emily Dickinson, Walt Whitman, Robert Frost, Elizabeth Bishop, and Wallace Stevens—students will be challenged to explain not only what a given poem might... (read more)

22219

Students in ENG 208 read and discuss Shakespeare's later work. The course introduces students to central questions in and approaches to the study of literature in English. Specific topics for discussion may include Shakespeare’s work with the constraints of genre; his dramaturgy; his... (read more)

26972

Wonham, Henry

Together with ENG 391, ENG 392 forms a chronological upper-division survey of the American novel from the 19th to the 20th century. These courses can be taken as a sequence, or they can be taken individually. No prerequisites are required, but students should be capable of advanced university-... (read more)

27000

Laskaya, C. Anne

ENG 107 is the first of a three-part chronological survey examining international trends in literature from ancient civilizations to the present. The year-long sequence (107, 108, 109) may be taken as a sequence or individually. There are no prerequisites, and no background knowledge of global... (read more)

12069

Zandstra, Robert

This course offers an introduction to the study of literature through the lens of faith and belief in fiction. In this course, we will examine ways that different texts grapple with some of the knottiest and deepest questions of life:
• How do the stories we tell affect what we believe?... (read more)