Department of English

Graduate Course Descriptions

Spring 2018


ENG 503-001 | M 6:30–9:15
Theory and Practice of Teaching Composition
Sarah Hallenbeck
MO 204
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 552-001 | T 6:30–9:15
Rhetoric and Culture
Anthony Atkins
MO 102
This course will provide an overview of definitions and practices of rhetoric, focusing on the history and significant movements that occur throughout the discipline of rhetoric. Students will learn rhetorical theory through readings, class/group discussions, and producing research essays and/or projects that focus on subjects within rhetorical theory. This course, broadly conceived, will focus on rhetorical theory and history from 500 BCE to present. Students will conduct library research considering online sources, and use digital communication technologies to offer oral presentations to create new media projects related to the concepts of rhetorical theory. Some figures we will study are the Sophists, Aristotle, Plato, Cicero, Quintilian, Erasmus, Blair, Whately, Burke, and Foucault among others.

ENG 561-001 | R 3:30–6:15
Studies in American Literature: TransAtlantic Romanticism
Mark Boren
MO 202
This course will look at the early development of Romanticism in England and Europe and how the genre was adopted, developed, and changed in the Americas. Romantic subjectivity traditionally privileges the individual, most often masculine ego, alone in Nature considering a transcendent experience, but we’ll explore how women, slaves, and soldiers interact with landscape and the sublime imagination as well. We'll investigate how different landscapes, inhabitants, and political systems for these authors shaped what it means to be human in a beautiful if terrifying world. We’ll read a number of canonical and non-canonical texts, including work by Wordsworth, Byron, the Shelleys, Whitman, Thoreau, Melville, and Dickinson.

ENG 566-001 | W 6:30–9:15
Studies in Anglophone World Literature: Migrations and Home in Contemporary Africana Literature
Maia Butler
MO 202
Migrations are ubiquitous in contemporary Africana literature and culture. In this course, we will read into the myriad ways home is represented and think about how conceptions of identity and belonging shift as immigrants are depicted moving and living in diaspora. We will consider how literatures of migration present issues of race, class, gender, region, and nationality as they respond to exigent geopolitical realities. We will defamiliarize the idea of home through reading and responding to fiction, memoir, poetry, and media portraying migrations to, from, and within the Americas, migrations both real and imagined. We will keep theory and criticism in Africana and Postcolonial Studies close at hand in order to: understand the current conversations scholars are engaged in, think about their responses to literature and culture as possible models for our own, and get a sense of how the work we will engage in throughout the semester contributes to the critical colloquy about migrations, home, and belonging.

Anticipated Texts:
A Map to the Door of No Return: Notes to Belonging, Dionne Brand ∙ Corregidora, Gayl Jones ∙ Middle Passage, Charles Johnson ∙ Paradise, Toni Morrison ∙ Fruit of the Lemon, Andrea Levy ∙ We Need New Names, NoViolet Bulawayo ∙
Americanah, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie ∙ Create Dangerously: The Immigrant Artist at Work, Edwidge Danticat

****This course counts toward Women and Gender Studies Graduate Certificate requirements****

ENG 578-001
Science Writing for Cross-Cultural and Global Audiences
Lance Cummings
In this course, students will consider how to communicate science to multiple stakeholders across cultures by considering different ways language and culture influence how we persuade and make meaning in various contexts. We will explore many different kinds of scientific writing that circulate across the globe, for example policy statements, white papers, opinion pieces, blogs, YouTube videos, podcasts, infographics and more. Students will leave this class with a repertoire of strategies for adapting to both technologically and culturally diverse environments.