Department of English

Graduate Course Descriptions

Spring 2019


ENG 503-001 | T 6:30–9:15, MO 204
Theory and Practice of Teaching Composition
Sarah Hallenbeck
The renowned writing teacher and columnist Donald Murray once lamented that he was apprenticed to two crafts he could never master: writing and teaching. In this class we’ll consider Murray’s words both as they relate to each of his crafts separately and as they ring true in combination, when one takes on the challenge of teaching first year composition (FYC). In addition to mapping out the history of composition studies and identifying its primary thematic approaches, we’ll explore what happens at the intersection of theory and practice, familiarize ourselves with resources available for writing teachers, and develop course materials useful for teaching composition at the university or community college level.

ENG 514-001 | W 3:30–6:15, MO 102
Studies in Drama – Theater of the European Avant-Garde
Paula Kamenish
This course focuses on an array of literary trends that manifest themselves in Germany, Italy, Switzerland, Russia, and France after 1890 through the exploration of an assortment of plays and manifestos that permit the student to visualize the clear movement of European theater along the paths of Symbolism, Pataphysical Theater, Futurism, Expressionism, Dada, Surrealism, the Theater of Cruelty, and the Theater of the Absurd in its quest for antirealism. Students will view stage productions on film, volunteer for acting roles, write & share frequent, short, informal questions and answers on assigned readings, report to the class on a critical text, and produce & present a term paper/project on the oeuvre of a single author of choice.

ENG 566-001 | M 6:30–9:15, MO 102
Studies in Anglophone World Literature: Tourism and the “Savage” in the Colonial Pacific  
Keith Newlin
This course explores the literary and travel narratives of the Colonial Pacific—Hawaii, French Polynesia, Samoa, and the Solomon Islands—as represented in the fiction and travel narratives of Herman Melville, Robert Louis Stevenson, Jack London, and others during a tumultuous time of cultural upheaval. European and American colonists encountered headhunting, cannibalism, and, to their eyes, bizarre rituals, and they practiced Blackbirding—the coercive recruiting of indigenous peoples to supply labor on sugar and cocoanut plantations—as they sought to establish colonies to exploit the resources of the islands. In addition to the writers mentioned above, students will read narratives by explorers and missionaries, documents by early tourists and journalists, and the work of photographers on scientific missions, whose perceptions of islanders were informed by the scientific racialism that later evolved into the modern disciplines of ethnography and anthropology. While fiction and travel narratives will form the core of the course, to understand those texts students will also examine selected scientific studies and manuscript sources as they develop a final seminar paper.

ENG 575-001 | Online
Professional Science Writing
Colleen Reilly
Students in this course will advance their skills in communicating scientific information for a variety of audiences in professional contexts. Students will develop a writing style that they can use to communicate complex scientific information concisely and clearly to advance their ideas and their work. Course projects enable students to critically analyze and synthesize scientific research, construct convincing presentations, design information for print and electronic publications, and produce other genres of writing, such as proposals and procedures. Students will investigate the persuasive strategies and ethical considerations necessary for the development of effective communications for specialist and non-specialist audiences. The instructor will provide intensive and frequent feedback on all aspects of students’ writing and information design.

ENG 580-001 | R 3:30–6:15, MO 202 
Studies in Literature: Austen and Her Afterlives
Katherine Montwieler
Jane Austen’s novels are among the most popular the world over. What is it about Austen that makes her a perennial global favorite? How has Austen changed in the 200 years since her death? How does she continue to remain relevant on the twenty-first-century stage? Who is Austen’s audience? How has her audience changed? We’ll try to answer these questions (and ask and answer others) as we read and analyze several Austen novels (probably Pride and Prejudice, Mansfield Park, Sense and Sensibility, among others), literary and cinematic adaptations of them, and contemporary fictional responses to them.