Course Offerings

Winter 2020

See complete information about these courses in the course offerings database. For more information about a specific course, including course type, schedule and location, click on its title.

Introduction to Creative Writing

ENGL 201 - Harrington, Jane F.

A course in the practice of creative writing, with attention to two or more genres. Pairings vary by instructor but examples might include narrative fiction and nonfiction; poetry and the lyric essay; and flash and hybrid forms. This course involves workshops, literary study, and critical writing.

Topics in Creative Writing: Fiction

ENGL 203 - Fuentes, Freddy O.

A course in the practice of writing short fiction, involving workshops, literary study, and critical writing.

 

Topics in Creative Writing: Fiction

ENGL 203 - Oliver, Bill

A course in the practice of writing short fiction, involving workshops, literary study, and critical writing.

 

Topics in Creative Writing: Poetry

ENGL 204 - Miranda, Deborah A.

A course in the practice of writing poetry, involving workshops, literary study, and critical writing.

Topics in Creative Writing: Nonfiction

ENGL 206 - Brodie, Laura F.

A course in the practice of writing nonfiction, involving workshops, literary study, and critical writing. May be repeated for degree credit if the topics are different.

Poetry and Music

ENGL 230 - Wheeler, Lesley M.

An introduction to the study of poetry in English with an emphasis on music. After starting with a consideration of how poems in print can be said to have rhythm and sound effects, students then investigate a series of questions about poetry and music, including: What's the relationship between lyric poetry and song lyrics? What makes a poem musical? What kinds of music have most influenced poetry during the last hundred years, and in what ways?

The Novel

ENGL 232 - Kharputly, Nadeen

An introductory study of the novel written in English. The course may focus on major representative texts or upon a subgenre or thematic approach. In all cases, the course introduces students to fundamental issues in the history and theory of modern narrative.

 

Introduction to Film

ENGL 233 - Dobin, Howard N. (Hank)

An introductory study of film taught in English and with a topical focus on texts from a variety of global film-making traditions. At its origins, film displayed boundary-crossing international ambitions, and this course attends to that important fact, but the course's individual variations emphasize one national film tradition (e.g., American, French, Indian, British, Italian, Chinese, etc.) and, within it, may focus on major representative texts or upon a subgenre or thematic approach. In all cases, the course introduces students to fundamental issues in the history, theory, and basic terminology of film.

Children's Literature

ENGL 234 - Harrington, Jane F.

A study of works written in English for children. The course treats major writers, thematic and generic groupings of texts, and children's literature in historical context. Readings may include poetry, drama, fiction, nonfiction, and illustrated books, including picture books that dispense with text.

Shakespeare

ENGL 252 - Pickett, Holly C.

A study of the major genres of Shakespeare's plays, employing analysis shaped by formal, historical, and performance-based questions. Emphasis is given to tracing how Shakespeare's work engages early modern cultural concerns, such as the nature of political rule, gender, religion, and sexuality. A variety of skills are developed in order to assist students with interpretation, which may include verse analysis, study of early modern dramatic forms, performance workshops, two medium-length papers, reviews of live play productions, and a final, student-directed performance of a selected play.

English Works: Careers for English Majors

ENGL 290 - Gertz, Genelle C. / Olan, Lorriann T. (Lorri)

A course for English majors and students considering the major to explore and prepare for careers. Students have the opportunity to assess their abilities and skills, learn about a variety of industries, develop professional documents as well as online profiles, participate in mock interviews, network with alumni, and apply for internships and jobs.

Topics in American Literature

ENGL 293A - Smout, Kary

Studies in American literature, supported by attention to historical contexts. Versions of this course may survey several periods or concentrate on a group of works from a short span of time. Students develop their analytical writing skills in a series of short papers. May be repeated for degree credit if the topics are different.

Winter 2020, ENGL 293A-01: Topics in American Literature: The American West (3). The American West is a land of striking landscapes, beautiful places to visit, such as Yellowstone and Yosemite, and stories that have had a huge impact on the USA and the world, such as Lewis and Clark, the Oregon Trail, Custer's Last Stand, Buffalo Bill's Wild West Show, and Cowboy and Indian adventures galore. This course studies some of these Western places, stories, art works, and movies. What has made them so appealing? How have they been used? We study works by authors such as John Steinbeck, Frederic Remington, Willa Cather, Wallace Stegner, and Cormac McCarthy, plus movies with actors like John Wayne, Clint Eastwood, and Brad Pitt to see how Western stories have played out and what is happening now in these contested spaces. (HL) Smout.

Topics in American Literature

ENGL 293B - Ball, Gordon V.

Studies in American literature, supported by attention to historical contexts. Versions of this course may survey several periods or concentrate on a group of works from a short span of time. Students develop their analytical writing skills in a series of short papers. May be repeated for degree credit if the topics are different.

Winter 2020, ENGL 293B-01: Topics in American Literature: Literature of the Beat Generation (3). A study of a revolutionary literary movement, focusing on the ways in which cultural and historical context have influenced the composition of and response to literature in the United States. This course examines the writings of several American authors (Jack Kerouac, Allen Ginsberg, William Burroughs, Anne Waldman, Amiri Baraka, Bob Dylan, Gregory Corso, Gary Snyder) active from the mid-1940s through recent decades, loosely grouped together as the Beat Generation. What cultural, literary, historical, and religious influences from the U.S. and other parts of the world have shaped their work? What challenges did their boldly different writings face, and how did their reception change over time? What are their themes? Their notions of style? What have they contributed to American (and world) life and letters? The goal of this course is to lay a strong foundation from which such questions can be richly addressed and answered. (HL) Ball.

Topics in American Literature

ENGL 293C - Bufkin, Sydney M.

Studies in American literature, supported by attention to historical contexts. Versions of this course may survey several periods or concentrate on a group of works from a short span of time. Students develop their analytical writing skills in a series of short papers. May be repeated for degree credit if the topics are different.

Winter 2020, ENGL 293C-01: Topics in American Literature: How We Read (3). What's the difference between reading for class and reading for fun? How does an English professor read a novel? How does Oprah read a novel? Why do we even read novels, anyway? For that matter, why do we join book clubs, post reviews on Goodreads, and add our photos to #bookstagram? What do all those different ways of reading look like, and how do they work? This class examines, analyzes, and practices different ways of reading, from academic study to pleasure reading to book clubs. Over the course of the term, we hone the skills necessary to literary analysis, focusing on close reading, strong arguments, and precise claims and evidence. In addition, we practice writing about what we read for non-academic audiences like Goodreads, Instagram, and friends and family. Because revision is an essential part of the writing process, you have several opportunities to revise your writing. (HL) Bufkin.

Topics in American Literature

ENGL 293D - Millan, Diego A.

Studies in American literature, supported by attention to historical contexts. Versions of this course may survey several periods or concentrate on a group of works from a short span of time. Students develop their analytical writing skills in a series of short papers. May be repeated for degree credit if the topics are different.

Winter 2020, ENGL 293D-01: Topics in American Literature: Toni Morrison (3). This course takes into account the literary, professional, and scholarly career of Nobel Prize winning author Toni Morrison. As a class, we read several of Morrison's works as well as her non-fiction scholarship to better understand the worlds she created in her fiction and the ideas she developed across her career, asking questions about history, representation, style, and identity. Potential works include: The Bluest Eye, Sula, Beloved, Home, Playing in the Dark, and The Origin of Others . Particular attention is paid to Morrison's writing in relation to the changing literary landscape into which she both wrote and left her indelible mark. (HL) Millan.

Topics in American Literature

ENGL 293E - Kharputly, Nadeen

Studies in American literature, supported by attention to historical contexts. Versions of this course may survey several periods or concentrate on a group of works from a short span of time. Students develop their analytical writing skills in a series of short papers. May be repeated for degree credit if the topics are different.

Winter 2020, ENGL 293E-01: Topics in American Literature: Asian-American Literature (3) . A study of literatures by Asian American authors, with a focus on how Asian Americans—broadly and inclusively defined—have transformed the social, political, and cultural landscapes of the United States. With such topics as immigration and refugee politics, racism and xenophobia, exclusion and internment, civil rights activism, the post-9/11 period, and model minority myth, our selected texts (novels, poetry, short stories) present both a historical and an intimate look into the lives of individuals who articulate what it means to identify as Asian American in the modern and contemporary United States. Potential texts include Maxine Hong Kingston's The Woman Warrior , John Okada's No-No Boy , Nam Le's The Boat , Mohsin Hamid's The Reluctant Fundamentalist , and R. O. Kwon's The Incendiaries . (HL) Kharputly.

Topics in World Literature in English

ENGL 294A - Ruiz, Florinda F. (Florinda)

World literature, taught in English, supported by attention to historical and cultural contexts. Versions of this course may survey several periods or concentrate on a group of works from a short span of time or focus on a cultural phenomenon. Students develop their analytical writing skills through both short papers and a final multisource research paper. May be repeated for degree credit and for the major if the topics are different.

Winter 2020, ENGL 294A-01: Topics in World Literature in English: Visual Art and Poetry in World Literature (3). For centuries, visual art has inspired poets, and poetry has inspired artists. How would some artworks sound if they were poems? What would some poems look like if they were art works? Moving through different historical periods and cultural contexts, this course explores the interrelation of both forms of expression to discover the aesthetic norms and values that inform and connect them. How do writers and visual artists use and portray rhythm, emotion, pattern, contrast, balance? Moving between the disciplines of semiotics, visual studies, history, rhetoric, and literary criticism, we analyze the creative powers that meet at the crossroads of poetry and visual art. (HL) Ruiz.

Advanced Creative Writing: Fiction

ENGL 308 - Staples, Beth A.

A workshop in writing fiction, requiring regular writing and outside reading.

 

 

Gender, Love, and Marriage in the Middle Ages

ENGL 312 - Kao, Wan-Chuan

A study of the complex nexus of gender, love, and marriage in medieval legal, theological, political, and cultural discourses. Reading an eclectic range of texts--such as romance, hagiography, fabliau, (auto)biography, conduct literature, and drama--we consider questions of desire, masculinity, femininity, and agency, as well as the production and maintenance of gender roles and of emotional bonds within medieval conjugality. Authors include Chaucer, Chretien de Troyes, Heldris of Cornwall, Andreas Capellanus, Margery Kempe, and Christine de Pisan. Readings in Middle English or in translation. No prior knowledge of medieval languages necessary.

 

The Tudors

ENGL 316 - Gertz, Genelle C.

Famous for his mistresses and marriages, his fickle treatment of courtiers, and his vaunting ambition, Henry VIII did more to change English society and religion than any other king. No one understood Henry's power more carefully than his daughter Elizabeth, who oversaw England's first spy network and jealously guarded her throne from rebel contenders. This course studies the writers who worked for the legendary Tudors, focusing on the love poetry of courtiers, trials, and persecution of religious dissidents, plays, and accounts of exploration to the new world. We trace how the ambitions of the monarch, along with religious revolution and colonial expansion, figure in the work of writers like Wyatt, Surrey, and Anne Askew; Spenser, Marlowe, Shakespeare, and Southwell; and Thomas More and Walter Ralegh.

Topics in Literature in English from 1700-1900

ENGL 393A - Millan, Diego A.

Enrollment limited. A seminar course on literature written in English from 1700 to 1900 with special emphasis on research and discussion. Student suggestions for topics are welcome. May be repeated for degree credit if the topics are different.

Winter 2020, ENGL 393A-01: Topics in Literature in English from 1700-1900: Early African-American Print (3). An examination of the early decades of African-American print culture as a way to explore the larger development of print in the early American republic and through the 19th century. We pay particular attention to the collective development of Black print personas and public discourse as well as to the early African-American novel. We also consider the ways in which print—black type on white pages—served as a metaphor for (re)producing racialization. Possible writers and texts include Phillis Wheatley, Olaudah Equiano, Frederick Douglass' Paper , James McCune Smith, the "Afric-American Picture Gallery", William Wells Brown, and The Garies and Their Friends . There are opportunities for archival research, either through Special Collections or digital databases. (HL) Millan.

Topics in Literature in English since 1900

ENGL 394A - Smout, Kary

Enrollment limited. A seminar course on literature written in English since 1900 with special emphasis on research and discussion. Student suggestions for topics are welcome. May be repeated for degree credit if the topics are different.

Winter 2020, ENGL 394A-01: Topics in Literature in English since 1900: American Outdoor Adventure Stories (3). Here in the New World, where Europeans arrived already excited about untouched wilderness waiting to be explored (and willfully blind to the native peoples living here), stories about travel and adventure were popular from the start. This class studies selected stories historically, seeing how the careers of writers like Henry David Thoreau, Mark Twain, and Herman Melville began with travel writings, and how adventure stories since then have developed, contributing to an explosion in extreme sports and outdoor recreation. Other authors may include John Muir, Jack London, Ernest Hemingway, Cormac McCarthy, Hampton Sides, Jon Krakauer, and Cheryl Strayed. We also study contemporary movies like Free Solo and corporations like Patagonia. How do these outdoor adventure stories impact our lives and culture now? (HL) Smout.

Topics in Literature in English since 1900

ENGL 394B - Miranda, Deborah A.

Enrollment limited. A seminar course on literature written in English since 1900 with special emphasis on research and discussion. Student suggestions for topics are welcome. May be repeated for degree credit if the topics are different.

Winter 2020, ENGL 394B-01: Topics in Literature in English since 1900: She Had Some Horses: Native American Women's Literatures 1900-2019 (3). A seminar course with special emphasis on research and discussion. Elizabeth Cook Lynn, Crow Creek Sioux, says that "Art and literature and storytelling are at the epicenter of all that an individual or a nation intends to be. ...a nation which does not tell its own stories cannot be said to be a nation at all." How do Native women writers counter the misrepresentations of Native Americans in familiar narratives like Pocahontas, Sacajawea, or the Land O' Lakes Maiden? This course examines novels, short stories, and poetry by contemporary Native American women authors, addressing racial and gender oppression, reservation and urban life, acculturation, political and social emergence as well as the leadership role of Native American women. Writers may include Erdrich, Silko, Hogan, Tapahonso, Long Soldier, Chrystos, Brant, and Harjo. (HL) Miranda .

 

 

Senior Research and Writing

ENGL 413 - Kao, Wan-Chuan

A collaborative group research and writing project for senior majors, conducted in supervising faculty members' areas of expertise, with directed independent study culminating in a substantial final project. Possible topics include ecocriticism, literature and psychology, material conditions of authorship, and documentary poetics.

Winter 2020, ENGL 413A: Senior Research and Writing: Spatializing the Text (3). Text takes up space, as a physical object or a virtual entity. Crucially, text creates and interrogates psychic, bodily, and social spaces: rooms, households, neighborhoods, cities, and nations. Space is key to the construction of subjectivity, for without it, the embodied subject cannot exist. As Liz Bondi and Joyce Davidson suggest, "to be is to be somewhere." And beyond the human, nonhuman nature and the cosmos are equally important in textual figurations of space. This seminar investigates the entanglements of textuality and spatiality, from utopia to dystopia, desire to discipline, and containment to liberation. We look at selections from Henri Lefebvre's The Production of Space , Gaston Bachelard's The Poetics of Space , Michel Foucault's "Heterotopia", Christian Jacob's The Sovereign Map , Yi-Fu Tuan's Space and Place , Doreen Massey's For Space , and Gloria Anzaldúa's Borderlands . Students compile a portfolio of reading responses in the first half of the seminar as preparation for their individual guided research project. (HL) Kao.

Winter 2020, ENGL 413B: Senior Research and Writing: Documentary Poetics (3). How do 20th- and 21st-century poets bear witness to social change? Students in this capstone read works by Muriel Rukeyser, Carolyn Forché, Kevin Young, and others, considering the uses of poetry and the politics of documentation. What sources do documentary poets draw on, and how do they handle the ethics of representation and citation? In response to the readings, students write critically and creatively, eventually pursuing research-based poetry projects on topics of their choosing. (HL) Wheeler.

Senior Research and Writing

ENGL 413 - Wheeler, Lesley M.

A collaborative group research and writing project for senior majors, conducted in supervising faculty members' areas of expertise, with directed independent study culminating in a substantial final project. Possible topics include ecocriticism, literature and psychology, material conditions of authorship, and documentary poetics.

Winter 2020, ENGL 413A: Senior Research and Writing: Spatializing the Text (3). Text takes up space, as a physical object or a virtual entity. Crucially, text creates and interrogates psychic, bodily, and social spaces: rooms, households, neighborhoods, cities, and nations. Space is key to the construction of subjectivity, for without it, the embodied subject cannot exist. As Liz Bondi and Joyce Davidson suggest, "to be is to be somewhere." And beyond the human, nonhuman nature and the cosmos are equally important in textual figurations of space. This seminar investigates the entanglements of textuality and spatiality, from utopia to dystopia, desire to discipline, and containment to liberation. We look at selections from Henri Lefebvre's The Production of Space , Gaston Bachelard's The Poetics of Space , Michel Foucault's "Heterotopia", Christian Jacob's The Sovereign Map , Yi-Fu Tuan's Space and Place , Doreen Massey's For Space , and Gloria Anzaldúa's Borderlands . Students compile a portfolio of reading responses in the first half of the seminar as preparation for their individual guided research project. (HL) Kao.

Winter 2020, ENGL 413B: Senior Research and Writing: Documentary Poetics (3). How do 20th- and 21st-century poets bear witness to social change? Students in this capstone read works by Muriel Rukeyser, Carolyn Forché, Kevin Young, and others, considering the uses of poetry and the politics of documentation. What sources do documentary poets draw on, and how do they handle the ethics of representation and citation? In response to the readings, students write critically and creatively, eventually pursuing research-based poetry projects on topics of their choosing. (HL) Wheeler.

Internship in Literary Editing with Shenandoah

ENGL 453 - Staples, Beth A.

An apprenticeship in editing with the editor of Shenandoah, Washington and Lee's literary magazine. Students are instructed in and assist in these facets of the editor's work: evaluation of manuscripts of fiction, creative nonfiction, poetry, comics, and translations; substantive editing of manuscripts, copyediting; communicating with writers; social media; website maintenance; the design of promotional material. May be applied once to the English major or Creative Writing minor and repeated for a maximum of six additional elective credits, as long as the specific projects undertaken are different.

Honors Thesis

ENGL 493 - Gertz, Genelle C.

A summary of prerequisites and requirements may be obtained at the English Department website (english.wlu.edu ).

Honors Thesis

ENGL 493 - Millan, Diego A.

A summary of prerequisites and requirements may be obtained at the English Department website (english.wlu.edu ).

Honors Thesis

ENGL 493 - Miranda, Deborah A.

A summary of prerequisites and requirements may be obtained at the English Department website (english.wlu.edu ).

Honors Thesis

ENGL 493 - Pickett, Holly C.

A summary of prerequisites and requirements may be obtained at the English Department website (english.wlu.edu ).

Honors Thesis

ENGL 493 - Smout, Kary

A summary of prerequisites and requirements may be obtained at the English Department website (english.wlu.edu ).

Honors Thesis

ENGL 493 - Staples, Beth A.

A summary of prerequisites and requirements may be obtained at the English Department website (english.wlu.edu ).

Honors Thesis

ENGL 493 - Wheeler, Lesley M.

A summary of prerequisites and requirements may be obtained at the English Department website (english.wlu.edu ).

Fall 2019

See complete information about these courses in the course offerings database. For more information about a specific course, including course type, schedule and location, click on its title.

Introduction to Creative Writing

ENGL 201 - Green, Leah N.

A course in the practice of creative writing, with attention to two or more genres. Pairings vary by instructor but examples might include narrative fiction and nonfiction; poetry and the lyric essay; and flash and hybrid forms. This course involves workshops, literary study, and critical writing.

Topics in Creative Writing: Fiction

ENGL 203 - Fuentes, Freddy O.

A course in the practice of writing short fiction, involving workshops, literary study, and critical writing.

 

Topics in Creative Writing: Poetry

ENGL 204 - Wheeler, Lesley M.

A course in the practice of writing poetry, involving workshops, literary study, and critical writing.

The Novel

ENGL 232 - Kharputly, Nadeen

An introductory study of the novel written in English. The course may focus on major representative texts or upon a subgenre or thematic approach. In all cases, the course introduces students to fundamental issues in the history and theory of modern narrative.

 

Introduction to Film

ENGL 233 - Sandberg, Stephanie L.

An introductory study of film taught in English and with a topical focus on texts from a variety of global film-making traditions. At its origins, film displayed boundary-crossing international ambitions, and this course attends to that important fact, but the course's individual variations emphasize one national film tradition (e.g., American, French, Indian, British, Italian, Chinese, etc.) and, within it, may focus on major representative texts or upon a subgenre or thematic approach. In all cases, the course introduces students to fundamental issues in the history, theory, and basic terminology of film.

The Bible as English Literature

ENGL 236 - Conner, Marc C.

An intensive study of the Bible as a literary work, focusing on such elements as poetry, narrative, myth, archetype, prophecy, symbol, allegory, and character. Emphases may include the Bible's influence upon the traditions of English literature and various perspectives of biblical narrative in philosophy, theology, or literary criticism.

Arthurian Legend

ENGL 240 - Kao, Wan-Chuan

Why does King Arthur continue to fascinate and haunt our cultural imagination? This course surveys the origins and histories of Arthurian literature, beginning with Celtic myths, Welsh tales, and Latin chronicles. We then examine medieval French and English traditions that include Chrétien de Troyes' Perceval , the lais of Marie de France, Sir Gawain and the Green Knight , the Alliterative Morte Arthure , and Malory's Le Morte Darthur . In addition to historical and literary contexts, we explore theoretical issues surrounding the texts, especially the relationship between history and fantasy, courtly love and adultery, erotic love and madness, romance and chivalry, gender and agency, and Europe and its Others. Finally, we investigate Arthurian medievalisms in Victorian England and in American (post)modernity through Tennyson, Twain, Barthelme, and Ishiguro. Along the way, we view various film adaptations of Arthurian legends. All texts are read in modern English translation.

Shakespeare

ENGL 252 - Dobin, Howard N. (Hank)

A study of the major genres of Shakespeare's plays, employing analysis shaped by formal, historical, and performance-based questions. Emphasis is given to tracing how Shakespeare's work engages early modern cultural concerns, such as the nature of political rule, gender, religion, and sexuality. A variety of skills are developed in order to assist students with interpretation, which may include verse analysis, study of early modern dramatic forms, performance workshops, two medium-length papers, reviews of live play productions, and a final, student-directed performance of a selected play.

Literature of the American South

ENGL 253 - Smout, Kary

A study of selected fiction, poetry, drama, and nonfiction by Southern writers in their historical and literary contexts. We practice multiple approaches to critical reading, and students develop their analytical writing skills in a series of short papers.

Literary Approaches to Poverty

ENGL 260 - Miranda, Deborah A.

Examines literary responses to the experience of poverty, imaginative representations of human life in straitened circumstances, and arguments about the causes and consequences of poverty that appear in literature. Critical consideration of dominant paradigms ("the country and the city," "the deserving poor," "the two nations," "from rags to riches," "the fallen woman," "the abyss") augments reading based in cultural contexts. Historical focus will vary according to professor's areas of interest and expertise.

Topics in American Literature

ENGL 293A - Ball, Gordon V.

Studies in American literature, supported by attention to historical contexts. Versions of this course may survey several periods or concentrate on a group of works from a short span of time. Students develop their analytical writing skills in a series of short papers. May be repeated for degree credit if the topics are different.

Fall 2019, ENGL 293A-01: Topics in American Literature: Literature of the Beat Generation (3). A study of a particular movement, focusing on the ways in which cultural and historical context have influenced the composition of and response to literature in the United States. This course examines the writings of such authors as Jack Kerouac, Allen Ginsberg, William Burroughs, Anne Waldman, Bob Dylan, Gregory Corso, and Gary Snyder, who wrote starting in the mid-1940s, continued through later decades, and became loosely known as the Beat Generation. What cultural, literary, historical, and religious influences from the U.S. and other parts of the world have shaped their work? What challenges did their boldly different writings face, and how did their reception change over time? What are their themes? Their notions of style? What have they contributed to American (and world) life and letters? The goal of this course is to lay a strong foundation from which such questions can be richly addressed and answered. (HL) Ball.

Topics in American Literature

ENGL 293B - Hill, Lena M.

Studies in American literature, supported by attention to historical contexts. Versions of this course may survey several periods or concentrate on a group of works from a short span of time. Students develop their analytical writing skills in a series of short papers. May be repeated for degree credit if the topics are different.

Fall 2019, ENGL 293B-01: Topics in American Literature: African-American Literature and Visual Culture (3). This course examines African-American literature ranging from 18th-century poetry to mid-20th-century novels. As we read texts published across this 200-year period, we study the ways writers engage visual art to portray black identity. By examining literature by Wheatley, Douglass, Jacobs, Washington, DuBois, Grimké, Larsen, Hurston, and Ellison alongside the high art and popular visual forms of their respective historical periods, we also assess how visual culture impacted the formation of the African-American literary tradition. (HL) L. Hill .

Topics in American Literature

ENGL 293C - Oliver, Bill

Studies in American literature, supported by attention to historical contexts. Versions of this course may survey several periods or concentrate on a group of works from a short span of time. Students develop their analytical writing skills in a series of short papers. May be repeated for degree credit if the topics are different.

Fall 2019, ENGL 293C-01: Topics in American Literature: The American Short Story (3). A study of the evolution of the short story in America from its roots, both domestic (Poe, Irving, Hawthorne, Melville) and international (Chekhov and Maupassant), tracing the main branches of its development in the 20th and 21st centuries. Among the writers we read: Flannery O'Connor, Joyce Carol Oates, John Cheever, John Updike, Philip Roth, Tobias Woolf, T.C. Boyle, Amy Hempel, Elizabeth Strout, Junot Diaz, Edwidge Danticat, and others. Additionally, we explore more recent permutations of the genre, such as magical realism, new realism, and minimalism. Having gained an appreciation for the history and variety of this distinctly modern genre, we focus our attention on the work of two American masters of the form, contemporaries and erstwhile friends who frequently read and commented on each other's work—Hemingway and Fitzgerald. We see how they were influenced by their predecessors and by each other and how each helped to shape the genre. (HL) Oliver.

 

Topics in World Literature in English

ENGL 294A - Ruiz, Florinda F. (Florinda)

World literature, taught in English, supported by attention to historical and cultural contexts. Versions of this course may survey several periods or concentrate on a group of works from a short span of time or focus on a cultural phenomenon. Students develop their analytical writing skills through both short papers and a final multisource research paper. May be repeated for degree credit and for the major if the topics are different.

Fall 2019, ENGL 294A-01:Topics in World Literature in English: The Confluence of Visual Art and Poetry in World Literature (3). Prerequisite: Completion of FW requirement. For centuries, visual art has inspired poets and poetry has inspired artists. How would some artworks sound if they were poems? What would some poems look like if they were art works? Taught in English and moving through different historical periods and cultural traditions, this course explores both forms of expression to discover the complexity of aesthetic norms and values that inform and connect them. How do writers and visual artists use and portray rhythm, emotion, pattern, contrast, balance? Moving between the disciplines of semiotics, visual studies, psychology, rhetoric, and literary criticism, we analyze the creative powers that meet at the crossroads of poetry and visual art. (HL) Ruiz.

Advanced Creative Writing: Poetry

ENGL 306 - Miranda, Deborah A.

A workshop in writing poems, requiring regular writing and outside reading.

Shakespearean Genres

ENGL 320 - Pickett, Holly C.

In a given term, this course focuses on one or two of the major genres explored by Shakespeare (e.g., histories, tragedies, comedies, tragicomedies/romances, lyric and narrative poetry), in light of Renaissance literary conventions and recent theoretical approaches. Students consider the ways in which Shakespeare's generic experiments are variably inflected by gender, by political considerations, by habitat, and by history.

Milton

ENGL 330 - Gertz, Genelle C.

This course surveys one of the most talented and probing authors of the English language -- a man whose reading knowledge and poetic output has never been matched, and whose work has influenced a host of writers after him, including Alexander Pope, William Blake, William Wordsworth, and Mary Shelley. In this course, we read selections from Milton's literary corpus, drawing from such diverse genres as lyric, drama, epic and prose polemic. As part of their study of epic form, students create a digital humanities project rendering Paradise Los t in gaming context. Quests, heroes, ethical choices and exploration of new worlds in Paradise Lost are rendered as a game. Students read Milton in the context of literary criticism and place him within his historical milieu, not the least of which includes England's dizzying series of political metamorphoses from Monarchy to Commonwealth, Commonwealth to Protectorate, and Protectorate back to Monarchy.

American Poetry from 1900 to 1945

ENGL 363 - Wheeler, Lesley M.

A consideration of American poetry from the first half of the 20th century, including modernism, the Harlem Renaissance, and popular poetry. Students will investigate the interplay of tradition and experiment in a period defined by expatriatism, female suffrage, and the growing power of urban culture.

Literary Theory

ENGL 375 - Kao, Wan-Chuan

A survey of major schools of literary theory including New Criticism, Formalism, Structuralism, Post-structuralism, Marxism, Psychoanalysis, Cultural Studies, New Historicism, Postcolonial and Native Studies, Feminisms, Queer Studies, Ecocriticism, and New Media. In addition to close reading, we examine alternative methods such as surface reading, flat reading, paranoid reading, and reparative reading. The final paper is tailored to individual student's interests. According to student interests, we also discuss preparations for graduate programs and explore the genres of thesis and grant proposals.

Topics in Literature in English from 1700-1900

ENGL 393A - Millan, Diego A.

Enrollment limited. A seminar course on literature written in English from 1700 to 1900 with special emphasis on research and discussion. Student suggestions for topics are welcome. May be repeated for degree credit if the topics are different.

Fall 2019, ENGL 393A-01: Topics in Literature in English from 1700-1900: The Global 19th Century (3). This course analyzes the various (inter)national, political, historical, cultural, and ultimately literary impacts of the increasingly interconnected world of the 19th century. Because covering a century in any single location is already a tall order, the course introduces students to thematic connections and ways of reading to inform discussion and research. Using what critic Lisa Lowe calls "the intimacies of four continents" as a foundation, students juxtapose the emergence of European liberalism with ongoing settler colonialism in the Americas, forced Indigenous removal, the enslavement of African people, and trade in Asia. Potential authors and topics include: Equiano, Irving, Apess, Douglass, the Haitian Revolution, racial classification/taxonomy, trade/economy, Latin American wars for independence, The Slavery Abolition Act of 1833, the Spanish-American War, fashion, Chinese indentured labor, Indigenous resistance, modernization, and immigration. (HL) Millan.

 

Directed Individual Study

ENGL 403 - Conner, Marc C.

A course designed for special students who wish to continue a line of study begun in an earlier advanced course. Their applications approved by the department and accepted by their proposed directors, the students may embark upon directed independent study which must culminate in acceptable papers. May be repeated for degree credit if the topics are different.

Fall 2019, ENGL 403-01: Directed Individual Study: The Bible as English Literature (3). Prerequisite: Instructor consent. Conner.

Directed Individual Study

ENGL 403 - Staples, Beth A.

A course designed for special students who wish to continue a line of study begun in an earlier advanced course. Their applications approved by the department and accepted by their proposed directors, the students may embark upon directed independent study which must culminate in acceptable papers. May be repeated for degree credit if the topics are different.

Fall 2019, ENGL 403-01: Directed Individual Study: The Bible as English Literature (3). Prerequisite: Instructor consent. Conner.

Senior Research and Writing

ENGL 413 - Millan, Diego A.

A collaborative group research and writing project for senior majors, conducted in supervising faculty members' areas of expertise, with directed independent study culminating in a substantial final project. Possible topics include ecocriticism, literature and psychology, material conditions of authorship, and documentary poetics.

Winter 2020, ENGL 413A: Senior Research and Writing: Spatializing the Text (3). Text takes up space, as a physical object or a virtual entity. Crucially, text creates and interrogates psychic, bodily, and social spaces: rooms, households, neighborhoods, cities, and nations. Space is key to the construction of subjectivity, for without it, the embodied subject cannot exist. As Liz Bondi and Joyce Davidson suggest, "to be is to be somewhere." And beyond the human, nonhuman nature and the cosmos are equally important in textual figurations of space. This seminar investigates the entanglements of textuality and spatiality, from utopia to dystopia, desire to discipline, and containment to liberation. We look at selections from Henri Lefebvre's The Production of Space , Gaston Bachelard's The Poetics of Space , Michel Foucault's "Heterotopia", Christian Jacob's The Sovereign Map , Yi-Fu Tuan's Space and Place , Doreen Massey's For Space , and Gloria Anzaldúa's Borderlands . Students compile a portfolio of reading responses in the first half of the seminar as preparation for their individual guided research project. (HL) Kao.

Winter 2020, ENGL 413B: Senior Research and Writing: Documentary Poetics (3). How do 20th- and 21st-century poets bear witness to social change? Students in this capstone read works by Muriel Rukeyser, Carolyn Forché, Kevin Young, and others, considering the uses of poetry and the politics of documentation. What sources do documentary poets draw on, and how do they handle the ethics of representation and citation? In response to the readings, students write critically and creatively, eventually pursuing research-based poetry projects on topics of their choosing. (HL) Wheeler.

Fall 2019, ENGL 413-01: Senior Research and Writing: For the Record: Sound Studies and Interpreting Literature (3). Despite rich examinations of poetry, oral traditions, drama, and film, Literary Studies still tends to construe its central object of concern—the text—as a static artifact (the book, the poem, the publication, the words on the page). Yet, creative imaginings of sound's resonant capacities are often central to a text's potential meanings. This capstone centers scholarship in the interdisciplinary field of "sound studies" as its foundation for reading literature through its more aural dimensions. During the first weeks of term, we pair excerpts from works such as Jacques Attali's Noise and R. Murray Schafer's The Soundscape with more recent approaches to the study of sound in relation to racialization, technology, class, and gender. In addition, we read shorter texts to practice these newly-tuned interpretation skills. Students apply this foundation to their literary field of interest and produce a capstone project. To aid in this, time is devoted to the writing process, peer-review, and other skills needed to produce a larger project. (HL) Millan.

Internship in Literary Editing with Shenandoah

ENGL 453 - Staples, Beth A.

An apprenticeship in editing with the editor of Shenandoah, Washington and Lee's literary magazine. Students are instructed in and assist in these facets of the editor's work: evaluation of manuscripts of fiction, creative nonfiction, poetry, comics, and translations; substantive editing of manuscripts, copyediting; communicating with writers; social media; website maintenance; the design of promotional material. May be applied once to the English major or Creative Writing minor and repeated for a maximum of six additional elective credits, as long as the specific projects undertaken are different.

Honors Thesis

ENGL 493 - Gertz, Genelle C.

A summary of prerequisites and requirements may be obtained at the English Department website (english.wlu.edu ).

Honors Thesis

ENGL 493 - Millan, Diego A.

A summary of prerequisites and requirements may be obtained at the English Department website (english.wlu.edu ).

Honors Thesis

ENGL 493 - Miranda, Deborah A.

A summary of prerequisites and requirements may be obtained at the English Department website (english.wlu.edu ).

Honors Thesis

ENGL 493 - Pickett, Holly C.

A summary of prerequisites and requirements may be obtained at the English Department website (english.wlu.edu ).

Honors Thesis

ENGL 493 - Smout, Kary

A summary of prerequisites and requirements may be obtained at the English Department website (english.wlu.edu ).

Honors Thesis

ENGL 493 - Staples, Beth A.

A summary of prerequisites and requirements may be obtained at the English Department website (english.wlu.edu ).

Honors Thesis

ENGL 493 - Wheeler, Lesley M.

A summary of prerequisites and requirements may be obtained at the English Department website (english.wlu.edu ).

Spring 2019

See complete information about these courses in the course offerings database. For more information about a specific course, including course type, schedule and location, click on its title.

Topics in Creative Writing: Playwriting

ENGL 202 - Gavaler, Christopher P. (Chris)

A course in the practice of writing plays, involving workshops, literary study, critical writing, and performance.

Eco-Writing

ENGL 207 - Green, Leah N.

An expeditionary course in environmental creative writing. Readings include canonical writers such as Frost, Emerson, Auden, Rumi, and Muir, as well as contemporary writers such as W.S. Merwin, Mary Oliver, Janice Ray, Gary Snyder, Annie Dillard, Tich Nhat Hanh, Wendell Berry, and Robert Hass. We take weekly "expeditions" including creative writing hikes, a landscape painting exhibit, and a Buddhist monastery. "Expeditionary courses" sometimes involve moderate to challenging hiking. We research the science and social science of the ecosystems explored, as well as the language of those ecosystems. The course has two primary aspects: (1) reading and literary analysis of eco-literature (fiction, non-fiction, and poetry) and (2) developing skill and craft in creating eco-writing through the act of writing in these genres and through participation in weekly "writing workshop."

 

The Novel

ENGL 232 - Hill, Michael D.

An introductory study of the novel written in English. The course may focus on major representative texts or upon a subgenre or thematic approach. In all cases, the course introduces students to fundamental issues in the history and theory of modern narrative.

 

Individual Shakespeare Play: Othello

ENGL 242 - Pickett, Holly C.

A detailed study of a single Shakespearean play, including its sources, textual variants, performance history, film adaptations and literary and cultural legacy. The course includes both performance-based and analytical assignments.

Spring 2019, ENGL 242-01: Othello and Ourselves: Race, Religion, and Reconciliation in Shakespeare (3). Race, religion, sexualized violence: Othello is a play that poses timely and difficult questions for our own age. This course examines one of Shakespeare's greatest tragedies in detail, studying its sources, historical context, textual history, performance history, and film adaptations. Subsequently, special attention is given to the play's literary and cultural legacy to see ways the play has been both cited and revised to comment on our modern situation. We consider one of Shakespeare's late plays, The Winter's Tale , as one of the early "revisions" of Shakespeare's Othello and see the play at the American Shakespeare Center in Staunton. (HL) Pickett.

English Works: Careers for English Majors

ENGL 290 - Gertz, Genelle C. / Olan, Lorriann T. (Lorri)

A course for English majors and students considering the major to explore and prepare for careers. Students have the opportunity to assess their abilities and skills, learn about a variety of industries, develop professional documents as well as online profiles, participate in mock interviews, network with alumni, and apply for internships and jobs.

Topics in British Literature

ENGL 292 - Walle, Taylor F.

British literature, supported by attention to historical and cultural contexts. Versions of this course may survey several periods or concentrate on a group of works from a short span of time or focus on a cultural phenomenon. Students develop their analytical writing skills through both short papers and a final multisource research paper. May be repeated for degree credit and for the major if the topics are different.

Spring 2019, ENGL 292-01: A Monstrous Creation: Frankenstein and Its Intertexts (3). Much like the creature who haunts its pages, Mary Shelley's Frankenstein is itself an assemblage of parts. Drawing on numerous literary and philosophical precedents, Shelley's groundbreaking novel is at once deeply familiar and shockingly new. Placing Frankenstein at its center, this seminar begins with texts that Shelley invokes--including Paradise Lost, Prometheus , Rousseau , and Coleridge , among others--and ends with texts that she inspires. We consider the common mythology, questions, and concerns that all of these texts share, and also the nature of literary allusion, homage, and adaptation. Why does the Genesis story remain so central to the Western literary tradition? Why is Shelley's creature an especially compelling representation of humankind's fallen condition? Why does Shelley's novel continue to resonate with modern audiences, 200 years after its publication? How does the figure of the monster evolve from Milton's Satan to Dick's Android? Students cultivate critical thinking and close reading through class discussion, and then deploy these same skills in a series of analytical writing assignments. (HL) Walle.

Topics in American Literature

ENGL 293 - Adams, Edward A.

Studies in American literature, supported by attention to historical contexts. Versions of this course may survey several periods or concentrate on a group of works from a short span of time. Students develop their analytical writing skills in a series of short papers. May be repeated for degree credit if the topics are different.

Spring 2019, ENGL 293-01: Topics in American Literature & Culture: Films of Alfred Hitchcock (3). Prerequisite: Completion of the FW requirement. Not open to students who have taken a similar course as ENGL 272 or 372. This course presents an intensive survey of the films of Alfred Hitchcock: it covers all of his major and many of his less well-known films. It supplements that central work by introducing students to several approaches to film analysis that are particularly appropriate for studying Hitchcock. These include biographical interpretation (Spoto's dark thesis), auteur and genre-based interpretation (Truffaut), psychological analyses (Zizek & Freud), and dominant form theory (hands-on study of novel to film adaptations). (HL) Adams.

Spring-Term Seminar in Literary Studies

ENGL 295 - Wilson, Ricardo A.

Students in this course study a group of works related by theme, by culture, by topic, by genre, or by the critical approach taken to the texts. Involves field trips, film screenings, service learning, and/or other special projects, as appropriate, in addition to 8-10 hours per week of class meetings. May be repeated for degree credit if the topics are different.

Spring 2019, ENGL 295-01: Spring-Term Seminar in Literary Studies: Neo-Slave Narratives (3). Prerequisite: Completion of FW requirement. How does an engagement with the genre of neo-slave narratives help to develop our thought about the institution of slavery across the Americas? Most importantly, how does this body of work force us to reexamine our cultural inheritance? This course addresses these questions via the thoughtful examination of a range of theoretical, fictional, and cinematic texts. This course involves a five-day residency at the Berry Hill Plantation in South Boston, Virginia. While exploring the plantation and surrounding communities, we visit slave cemeteries and some of the most well-preserved slave quarters in the nation. (HL) Wilson.

Spring-Term Seminar in Literary Studies

ENGL 295 - Millan, Diego A.

Students in this course study a group of works related by theme, by culture, by topic, by genre, or by the critical approach taken to the texts. Involves field trips, film screenings, service learning, and/or other special projects, as appropriate, in addition to 8-10 hours per week of class meetings. May be repeated for degree credit if the topics are different.

Spring 2019, ENGL 295-02: Spring-Term Seminar in Literary Studies: Adapting the 19th Century (4). Prerequisite: Completion of FW requirement. This course considers what it takes to adapt facets of the 19th century for 21st-century audiences. We read literary works ranging from "Rip Van Winkle" to "The Tell-Tale Heart" to Douglass' Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, as well as neo slave narratives, film, and artefact curation that either adapt these works or otherwise engage the difficult questions that emerge out of adapting the 19th century (slavery, empire, etc.). Students think about what makes something literature, what goes into adaptation, and what alternative versions of a given text can show us about their source material. The course includes visits to Monticello and the National Museum of African American History and Culture. Students eventually work towards adapting/curating an aspect of W&L's 19th-century history for modern audiences. (HL) Millan.

Hotel Orient

ENGL 382 - Kao, Wan-Chuan

This seminar charts the historical encounters between East and West through the very spaces that facilitate cross-cultural transactions from the medieval to the postmodern. If modern hotel consciousness is marked by transience, ennui, eroticism, and isolation, we ask whether or not the same characteristics held true in premodern hotel practices, and if the space of the Orient makes a difference in hotel writing. Semantically, "Orient" means not only the geographic east. As a verb, to orient means to position and ascertain one's bearings. In this sense, to write about lodging in the East is to sort out one's cultural and geopolitical orientation.

Visions and Beliefs of the West of Ireland

ENGL 387 - Brown, Alexandra R. / Conner, Marc C.

This course immerses the student in the literature, religious traditions, history, and culture of Ireland. The primary focus of the course is on Irish literary expressions and religious beliefs and traditions, from the pre-historic period to the modem day, with a particular emphasis on the modem (early 20th-century) Irish world. Readings are coordinated with site visits, which range from prehistoric and Celtic sites to early and medieval Christian sites to modem Irish life. Major topics and authors include Yeats and Mysticism, St. Brendan's Pilgrimage, Folklore and Myth, Lady Gregory and Visions, Religion in Irish Art, the Blasket Island storytellers, the Mystic Island, and others.

Topics in Literature in English before 1700

ENGL 392 - Pickett, Holly C.

Enrollment limited. A seminar course on literature written in English before 1700 with special emphasis on research and discussion. Student suggestions for topics are welcome. May be repeated for degree credit if the topics are different.

Spring 2019, ENGL 392-01: Topic: English Literature beforen 1700: Othello and Ourselves: Race, Religion, and Reconciliation in Shakespeare (4). Race, religion, sexualized violence: Othello is a play that poses timely and difficult questions for our own age. This course examines one of Shakespeare's greatest tragedies in detail, studying its sources, historical context, textual history, performance history, and film adaptations. Subsequently, special attention is given to the play's literary and cultural legacy to see ways the play has been both cited and revised to comment on our modern situation. We consider one of Shakespeare's late plays, The Winter's Tale , as one of the early "revisions" of Shakespeare's Othello and see the play at the American Shakespeare Center in Staunton. Students taking the course for 300-level credit complete a digital-humanities project on the textual variants between the two earliest editions of the play. (HL) Pickett.

Topics in Literature in English from 1700-1900

ENGL 393 - Walle, Taylor F.

Enrollment limited. A seminar course on literature written in English from 1700 to 1900 with special emphasis on research and discussion. Student suggestions for topics are welcome. May be repeated for degree credit if the topics are different.

Spring 2018, ENGL 393-01: Topics in Literature from 1700-1900: Austen's Fan Cultures and Afterlives (3). In the 20th and 21st centuries, Jane Austen has attained a celebrity that far exceeds the recognition she enjoyed during her lifetime. The fan culture that now surrounds Austen, her spunky heroines, and her swoon-worthy heroes rivals that of Star Wars or Harry Potter. Austen enthusiasts meet for book club, wear Regency costumes, convene for tea, and throw balls with period-appropriate music and dance. All of this mooning over Mr. Darcy, however, could easily be the object of Austen's own satire. Mercilessly lampooning silliness and frivolity, "dear Jane" was more inveterate cynic than hopeless romantic. How, then, did Austen transform from biting social satirist to patron saint of chick lit? Beginning with three of Austen's novels, and then turning to the fan cultures surrounding Pride and Prejudice, this course examines the nature of fandom, especially its propensity to change and adapt the very thing it celebrates. What does it mean to be a fan? Is there such a thing as an "original" or authorial meaning of a text? What do Austen's fan cultures say about both the novels themselves and the society that appropriates them? This course meets 300-level departmental requirements by requiring 15-20 pages of writing. Walle .