Undergraduate Courses, Spring 2008

Times and locations of class meetings are subject to change. Consult the UF Schedule of Courses for official class times and locations and an explanation of the class period abbreviations.

Lower Division (1000–2000) Special Content Courses

Note: Only course descriptions are listed below. For a comprehensive summary of course numbers, sections, times and locations, titles, and instructors, see the following web page:

Spring 2008, Lower Division, Special Content

ENG 2935

Honors: Classic Movies

Norman Holland

This seminar will consist of one session to show a movie and one session for discussion of the movie. At the first meeting, a list of films will be chosen so as to fill gaps in the students’ film experience. The discussion will emphasize narrative and thematic interpretations of the films. Students will be required to write a one-page paper about each film prior to discussion.

ENG 2935

Honors: Artists who Work in Several Media

Sidney Homan

We will examine the plays of Samuel Beckett, Harold Pinter, Tom Stoppard, and Sam Shepard, as well as their work in other media: Beckett in radio, television, and film; Pinter in non-dramatic literature (poetry) and film; Stoppard in radio; and Shepard in variations on what normally constitutes a staged play.

The assumption in all my theatre courses is that the text of a play is not just what is written on the page but that text in performance, delivered by actors before an audience. This means the play’s text also includes gestures, movement, blocking (the stage picture), and sub-text (what the character is saying inwardly, beneath the lines delivered onstage, as well as the “history” for that character invented by the actor). In the theatre, we would further supplement this text with lighting, sound, set, costumes, props, and make-up. To be sure, one can approach a play in a thousand ways-as literature, as a repository for the thinking of an age, as the springboard for political or cultural issues. But, since I work both on campus and in the theatre, as an actor and director, and since the theatre itself is a unique medium with its own aesthetic principles, I approach the plays, with my students, and as a fellow “student,” as something meant to be performed by an actor and ratified by an audience. In my courses each student has a scene partner with whom he or she stages several scenes each semester. Once performed, the class and I, as co-directors, “work” that scene with the two actors, trying out options, rehearsing it. This is a challenge, to be sure, but students, no matter what their background, should have no anxiety about doing things this way for, historically in my courses, Mechanical Engineering majors have done no worse than Theatre students who have done no better than those working in English or Anthropology. The emphasis, therefore, is on learning by doing, and I judge student work by intent, what goes into the performance – not by finesse. If there is finesse, that is considered a bonus.

Besides their work in other media, we will focus on Beckett’s Waiting for Godot, Stoppard’s Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead, Pinter’s Old Times and No Man’s Land, and Shepard’s True West and Curse of the Starving Class. There is a major course paper assessing your work as actor and using your own performance as the subject. Students will also see two productions at the Acrosstown Repertory Theatre – An Evening with Tom Stoppard and An Evening with Harold Pinter.

ENG 2935

Honors: American Sci-Fi

Andrew Gordon

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