UndergraduateCourses, Spring 2010

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.

Upper Division (3000–4000) 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:

AML 3041

American Literature II: Social Justice & the Twentieth-Century Novel

Katharine Westaway

This course is concerned with the connection between twentieth-century novels and social justice. The novels we will study are a part of ongoing social conversations in which ideas of social justice are broached; together they comprise twentieth-century discourses about poverty, racism, war, and sexism. We will look at the unique qualities the novels possess to fully weigh an issue of sociopolitical significance. We will be focusing on John Steinbeck’s The Grapes of Wrath for its description of the plight of farm workers, Richard Wright’s Native Son because of its place in the civil rights movement, Norman Mailer’s The Armies of the Night for the role it played in the peace movement of the 1960’s, and Alice Walker’s The Color Purple for its exploration of the ideas of womanism. We will also spend time incorporating John Dos Passos’ U.S.A. Trilogy (The 42nd Parallel, 1919, The Big Money), Tillie Olsen’s Yonnondio: From the Thirties, and Richard Wright’s Black Boy into the discussion of our four main novels. One way to begin to draw connections between novels and social activism is to look at how a novelist works to pique a reader’s conscience. In all of the texts, we will be appraising the literary apparatus novelists use to unsettle and trouble the mind of a reader, and we will also try to identify rhetorical moves that are intended to move a reader to action. Novels concerned with the theme of social justice play a crucial role in awakening readers to other realities, and can change hearts and minds on a spectrum of social issues.


AML 3270

African-American Literature: Beginning to 1945

Daniel Bell

African-American Literature: Beginning to 1945 will provide a survey of the most significant writings of Black Americans from 1760 to 1945. It is meant to introduce students to a variety of authors, genres, and periods. This course will emphasize the development, continuities, and discontinuities within the literary tradition. We will pay special attention to issues of fictional representation of the black experience, including issues of heritage, identity, feminism, sexuality, and the idea of the African diaspora. Literature to be supplemented with film, art, and critical readings.


AML 3271

Survey of African American Literature II

Amy Ongiri

This course will examine African American literature and culture in relationship to the tremendous social, political, and cultural change that characterized the post-war period. Special attention will be given to the ways in which African American social change movements such as Civil Rights, Black Power, and Black Feminism affect African American cultural production and African American aesthetic practices.


AML 4213

The First U.S. Novels

Ed White

This course offers an introduction to the early US novel from roughly 1790 to 1820. We will examine a number of experiments in writing from this period with a particular focus on first person narratives and satirical fiction. Authors studied may include: Hugh Henry Brackenridge, Royall Tyler, Rebecca Rush, Charles Brockden Brown, Susanna Rowson, Jonas Clopper, Jesse Holman, Thomas Pettengill, Stephen Burroughs, Tabitha Tenney, and of course Anonymous. Please note that this is a reading intensive course.


AML 4242

Modern American Poetry

Marsha Bryant

This course takes an in-depth look at poems by Robert Frost, Gertrude Stein, T.S. Eliot, Wallace Stevens, Langston Hughes, Gwendolyn Brooks, Allen Ginsberg, Sylvia Plath, and Rita Dove. Besides considering their interplay of traditional vs. innovative forms, we will focus on the poetry’s relationships to the natural world, domesticity, visual culture, and the city. In addition, we will consider the public role of poetry in the U.S. Course assignments are two papers, a panel presentation, a parody, reading quizzes, and engaged participation in discussion.


AML 4242

Modernism & Popuar Culture

Susan Hegeman

Literary modernism – the stylistically experimental literary movement of the 1910s-1930s – is often considered difficult and even deliberately inaccessible. And yet modernist writers could hardly avoid the significant efflorescence of popular cultural forms in this period, notably the movies and jazz, but also advertising and popular fiction. In this course, we will discuss some of the central figures of American literary modernism in the context of popular culture, considering how popular forms and artists influenced their styles subject matter, their enthusiasms, and their aversions. We will also consider the ways in which creators in popular media could be seen as modernist experimenters in their own rights. We will therefore address a range of materials in the class, including poetry, fiction (both experimental and popular), film, art, photography, and music.

Grades will be based on attendance, participation in course discussion and activities and papers.


AML 4282

Sodomy to Sexology: American Literature & Sexuality to 1900

Jodie Schorb

This course is crosslisted with WST 4930 (5359).

This course considers how knowledge about early American sexuality and sexual history can enrich our understanding of earlier American literature.

The long eighteenth century was particularly concerned with how individuals and specific populations (women, bachelors, the poor, slaves...) “use” their sexuality. Such concerns influence national debates around morality, slavery, the responsibilities of a “rising generation,” the role of the family, the value of thrift and temperance, and the potency of American economic, military and maritime power.

After a theoretical introduction that explains how sexual knowledge is created and shaped through literature, the course moves through three main periods – early republic, antebellum, and early modern (marked by the rise of “sexology”) – analyzing a diverse range of genres (sermon, seduction novel, travel narrative, detective fiction, slave narrative, gothic fiction). Discussion will emphasize how American sexual history influences the form, structure, themes, and reception of our chosen texts.

We’ll also consider why and when certain figures – including sodomites, cross-dressers, coquettes, rakes, and sexual “inverts” – become central to narratives at particular historical junctures. We’ll explore how various geographies – the city, the slave plantation, the faraway isle, the utopian commune – become associated with specific sexual knowledges, possibilities, and threats. Throughout, we’ll be mindful of who circulated and read our texts and for what purposes, orthodox and other.

Primary readings include Foster’s Coquette, the Female Marine, Howe’s The Hermaphrodite, Melville’s Typee, Poe’s “Mystery of Marie Roget,” Hawthorne’s The Blithedale Romance, Jacobs’s Incidents in the life of a Slave Girl, Walt Whitman’s poetry, James’s The Turn of the Screw, and others. These diverse writers do more than reflect the sexual mores of their time – they intervene, challenge prevailing norms, and proliferate new sexual knowledge and desires.

Secondary readings, often interdisciplinary in scope, will provide relevant social and literary history. Requirements include frequent short analysis or short research assignments, a final research paper, and group work. Regular attendance and participation are required.


AML 4311

Fiction of Philip Roth

Andrew Gordon

This course is crosslisted with JST 4936 (7344).


Philip Roth is one of the most accomplished American novelists since WW II. He has been publishing fiction since 1959 and garnered popular attention, major literary awards, critical praise, and fierce condemnation. He is best known as the author of the controversial Portnoy’s Complaint (1969), but he has also written many other innovative novels, including the recent best-seller The Plot Against America. Even as he continued to focus on Jewish-American male identity in the period since World War II, he has grown from realist to postmodernist, conducting daring explorations across the boundary lines between fact and fiction, investigating both “real life” and the stories we construct about it and live by.


We will read some of Roth’s major fiction. Time permitting, we will also view some film adaptations, such as Goodbye Columbus and The Human Stain. We will consider Roth in a number of contexts: as Jewish-American author, as an American author deeply concerned about American history, politics, culture, race, and gender, as a realist, and as a metafictionist.

This course aims to improve your understanding of post-WW II American fiction and Jewish-American culture through extensive reading and writing about the works of a single major author.


About Philip Roth:


Note: There will be no midterm or final exam.


AML 4453

Consumer Society & its Discontents

Susan Hegeman

Postwar American culture is marked by a profound social and economic change. In the last 100 years, the United States has gone from being a leading producer of goods to being the world’s biggest consumer. When Americans slow down their consumerist ways, the global economy starts to shudder. But what does this mean to people in terms of their lived experience? How have Americans come to terms with the change from a society in which identity, status, and self-worth were tied up with ideas of production to a society where these things are as much defined by what, and how, we consume? What kinds of new attitudes, fears, hopes, and resistances does our consumer society provoke? In this course, we will consider these questions through a range of objects including novels, films, poetry, and essays.

Grades will be based on attendance, participation in course discussion and activities and papers.


AML 4453

American Romanticisms

Stephanie Smith

Transcendentalism was an American philosophy that had much in common with the British romantics. American writers such as Emerson, Fuller, Thoreau and Hawthorne were all engaged in thinking and writing within this romantic philosophy, a philosophy that gave way, after the Civil War, to a different aesthetic philosophy, realism. This course is going to take a look back at the fundamentals of romance, as seen through an American lens. What does the idea of romance allow into an aesthetics that made it attractive to antebellum American writers? What are the limits of romance? We will start with Nathaniel Hawthorne’s The Blithedale Romance as a defining text, and will read major works from this period that work through or with an idea of romance, including some of Hawthorne’s short stories; works by Herman Melville, Margaret Fuller, Ralph Waldo Emerson, and Edgar Allen Poe.


AML 4453

The Pen & The Penitentiary: The Rise of the Penitentiary in American Literature

Jodi Schorb

This is a course for students interested in the history of early prisons and early prison literature in America. Our readings will be drawn from three primary areas: historical pamphlets and essays by prison reformers, non-fiction accounts penned by prisoners, and imaginative literature (novels, short fiction, poetry) in which the penitentiary plays an important role.

How were American reformers and activists at the forefront of the transatlantic movement to transform the “gaol” into the modern “penitentiary”? In what contexts did the writings of real prisoners circulate during this period? And how did the invention of the penitentiary “capture” the imagination of important innovators of American fiction?

Beginning in the 1780s, American prison reformers participated in a transatlantic debate about the value and promise of reformative incarceration. Historical readings from the 18th and 19th centuries (by Benjamin Rush, Robert Trumbull, Charles Dickens, and others) trace the invention of the penitentiary, debate the value of capital punishment and solitary confinement, and theorize the effectiveness of penitential “reform.”

Autobiographical writings by real prisoners helped shape debates around punishment and justice, and we will also read autobiographical (and “as told to”) accounts of real prisoners, including Memoirs of the Celebrated and Beautiful Mrs. Ann Carson (1838), the abolitionist account Prison Life and Reflections (1847), Narrative of the Life and Adventures of Henry Bibb, an American Slave (1849), and Thoreau’s influential essay, “Civil Disobedience.”

Finally, we will consider the way the new knowledge, debates, and architecture of the penitentiary shaped the development of American fiction, in part through what Caleb Smith has named the “Poetics of the Penitentiary” – narratives of rebirth structured upon the convict’s civil or virtual death. Readings include Nathaniel Hawthorne’s The Scarlet Letter and/or The Blithedale Romance, Poe’s “The Pit and the Pendulum,” Herman Melville’s novella Bartleby the Scrivener, and select twentieth century fiction and poetry. Together, the readings and coursework will help students link the development of the prison to the “carceral imagination” in American literature.

Two essays, shorter writing assignments, an independent reading project on a text of your choice, and frequent group work. Regular attendance and participation required.


AML 4685

Jewish-American Fiction Since 1945

Andrew Gordon

This course is crosslisted with JST 4936 (3252).


At Goering's Books, 1717 NW 1st Ave:

At Orange and Blue Texts, 309 NW 13 St, across from Krispy Kreme:


This course traces the development of Jewish-American fiction since 1945 within the context of twentieth-century American literatures and cultures and deals with the role of ethnic literatures within our multiethnic nation. Most of the works we will read concern problems of assimilation of Jews into American society and the quest of the protagonists for identity as Americans and Jews.

We will study how Jewish-American fiction moved into the mainstream of American literature after WW II as the Jews became increasingly Americanized. We will also consider such topics as anti-Semitism, literary responses to the Holocaust and to the state of Israel, and the rise of Jewish feminism.

This is not a course in religion and you need not be Jewish to take it. An interest in American literature, history, and culture or in issues of ethnic identity and assimilation is sufficient.

I hope this course will make you a more sensitive interpreter of American culture and a better writer.



AML 4685

African American Drama

Mark Reid

What makes dramas written by Black American playwrights and theater collectives different from those written and or performed by such writers and theater collectives as Arthur Miller, Sam Shepard, Richard Foreman, Laurie Anderson, Judith Malina and Julian Beck’s Living Theatre and Peter Brook’s International Centre of Theater Research?

Using recent theoretical and political debates on the construction of identity, and culling information from recent theater journals as the Tulane Drama Review, this seminar traces the historical trajectory of black dramatic writing and performance. Discussion will situate plays, playwrights and dramatic strategies within a (inter)national(ist) context(s). Thus, the seminar also has as one of its purposes the inclusion of black theater within the various national and international movements to show the interconnectedness of certain but not all schools of American and international drama.

The course covers representative works from the Theater of the Black Experience, the Black Arts Movement, The Free Southern Theatre, and the Black avant-garde and experimentalist stage. Readings may include works by such playwrights as Amiri Baraka, Ed Bullins, P.J. Gibson, Lorraine Hansberry, Langston Hughes, Adrienne Kennedy, Lynn Nottage, Suzan-Lori Parks, Stew, August Wilson, Tracey Scott Wilson, George C. Wolfe, and such performance artists as Fred Holland, Robbie McCauley, John O'Neal, Whoopi Goldberg, and Anna Deavere Smith.

In writing the analytical papers, students must create their own gumbo-like theory of lived and imagined forms of black experience as it is represented in the dramatic works covered in this course.


Note: All assigned readings, recommended texts, and films are on reserve in Smathers Library.



CRW 3110

Imaginative Writing: Fiction

Jill Ciment

Basically, the class will be run in the “traditional” workshop fashion. Some writing exercises will be assigned at the beginning, but the primary emphasis is on self-generated work. Each student will be expected to write two short stories, as well as complete a final draft of one. Optimally, students will turn in stories that they have taken as far as they can on their own. The workshop should be a venue to test the waters, to try new things, to present first drafts as well as polished works, but only after the writer has struggled with it to the nth degree. The idea is for students to rigorously challenge themselves. Everyone not presenting work should take their jobs as critics and editors as seriously as they take their own writing.

Submitting Manuscripts for Upper-Division Creative Writing Courses

To qualify for departmental registration for upper-division creative writing (CRW) courses, you must submit a manuscript to the instructor of the course you wish to take. Each manuscript you submit for each course to which you apply must be accompanied by a Manuscript Submission Cover Sheet, which is available from the link below or in TUR 4012-A. It tells us what you wish to do, and it will help us put you in a course when space is tight. It will allow us to put you in the course you prefer when we can. Please fill it in closely and completely.

For CRW 3310 or CRW 4906, submit four poems; for CRW 3110 or CRW 4905, submit one short story or excerpt from longer work (up to 20 pp.). For ENG 4133, submit a short (approx. 500 words) summary of the film script you want to write.

The Manuscript Submission Cover Sheet indicates whether individual instructors require you to submit hard copies of your manuscripts to their mailboxes in Turlington 4301 or via email.

All submissions must be received by the October 14, 2009 deadline.

Manuscript Submission Guidelines & Cover Sheet


CRW 3310

Imaginative Writing: Poetry

Michael Hofmann

Last semester I taught a junior Honors class, to mostly non-poets and non-English majors. I brought in a wide array of materials to give these engineers and scientists and psychologists and whatnot some bearings in poetry, and Les Murray walked away with – the honors. Hence this semester, we read him.

It’s my view that if Les Murray had been British or Irish or Welsh, or, hell, even Canadian or Jamaican or Papua New Guinean, he would be far better known here than he is. (In England at least that’s better than here – in some ways, Australia’s the invisible continent, or the continent that dare not speak its name.) I first came across Les Murray almost 30 years ago, and had the sense then that the best poems currently being written anywhere in the world were by him; today I merely think he’s the best poet writing in English. His readings are like nothing you’ve ever experienced. (I’m proud of having got him to come to U.F. one year.) It’s too bad he hasn’t (yet?) won the Nobel Prize, though one gathers he’s a contumacious so-and-so, in the nicest possible way. (He grew up on a cattle farm, in a hut without electricity or running water, almost without walls: his biographer observes that no poet since Keats can have grown up in such desperately poor or primitive circumstances.) What’s exemplary about him is the way that anything and everything can become a poem: he has no limits. He writes about the city and the country, about personal and historical subjects, about plants and animals and abstractions. Roman glassware, cows, showers, a hot curry, his inlaws’ migration to Australia, a bullied and tormented childhood – all have their poems. When he had catastrophic liver failure a few years back, and almost died, he used the hospital bulletin’s phrase on his condition as the title for his next book, Conscious and Verbal, and stuck a parrot on the jacket. That’s class.

I hope something of his sense (so far as I’m aware, only he has it, of all living writers) of how big and strange and useful poetry is can transmit itself to all of us. Not much being written today is worth reading or emulating, he, I am convinced, is. I look forward to reading him with you, and to reading you alongside him.

Submitting Manuscripts for Upper-Division Creative Writing Courses

To qualify for departmental registration for upper-division creative writing (CRW) courses, you must submit a manuscript to the instructor of the course you wish to take. Each manuscript you submit for each course to which you apply must be accompanied by a Manuscript Submission Cover Sheet, which is available from the link below or in TUR 4012-A. It tells us what you wish to do, and it will help us put you in a course when space is tight. It will allow us to put you in the course you prefer when we can. Please fill it in closely and completely.

For CRW 3310 or CRW 4906, submit four poems; for CRW 3110 or CRW 4905, submit one short story or excerpt from longer work (up to 20 pp.). For ENG 4133, submit a short (approx. 500 words) summary of the film script you want to write.

The Manuscript Submission Cover Sheet indicates whether individual instructors require you to submit hard copies of your manuscripts to their mailboxes in Turlington 4301 or via email.

All submissions must be received by the October 14, 2009 deadline.

topManuscript Submission Guidelines & Cover Sheet


CRW 4905

Advanced Seminar in Fiction Writing

Padgett Powell

This course is the last in our series of undergraduate workshops in fiction writing. Its objective is to have you write better fiction, not unlike the mission of any workshop. But this course is the finishing course, as it were, that tries to advance you to a point that you can apply to grad schools in writing, or begin to publish--it wants to make you the best writer at the undergraduate level we can make of you.

Standard workshop format. I anticipate full efforts at writing well, at criticizing for the benefit of others, at attending religiously, at speaking cogently when you can, at surrounding yourself in the warm air of intelligent reticence when you can’t.

We will read two books of fiction as technical models.

Submitting Manuscripts for Upper-Division Creative Writing Courses

To qualify for departmental registration for upper-division creative writing (CRW) courses, you must submit a manuscript to the instructor of the course you wish to take. Each manuscript you submit for each course to which you apply must be accompanied by a Manuscript Submission Cover Sheet, which is available from the link below or in TUR 4012-A. It tells us what you wish to do, and it will help us put you in a course when space is tight. It will allow us to put you in the course you prefer when we can. Please fill it in closely and completely.

For CRW 3310 or CRW 4906, submit four poems; for CRW 3110 or CRW 4905, submit one short story or excerpt from longer work (up to 20 pp.). For ENG 4133, submit a short (approx. 500 words) summary of the film script you want to write.

The Manuscript Submission Cover Sheet indicates whether individual instructors require you to submit hard copies of your manuscripts to their mailboxes in Turlington 4301 or via email.

All submissions must be received by the October 14, 2009 deadline.

linkManuscript Submission Guidelines & Cover Sheet


CRW 4906

Advanced Seminar in Poetry Writing

Sidney Wade

This is an advanced poetry-writing course that will focus on the many varieties of ekphrastic poetry. We will investigate how responses to other art forms influence a poet’s choice of subject and treatment of it. We will study historical examples of poetry written in response to art. Students will be responsible for leading one discussion in the course of the semester and will also be writing one poem a week.

Submitting Manuscripts for Upper-Division Creative Writing Courses

To qualify for departmental registration for upper-division creative writing (CRW) courses, you must submit a manuscript to the instructor of the course you wish to take. Each manuscript you submit for each course to which you apply must be accompanied by a Manuscript Submission Cover Sheet, which is available from the link below or in TUR 4012-A. It tells us what you wish to do, and it will help us put you in a course when space is tight. It will allow us to put you in the course you prefer when we can. Please fill it in closely and completely.

For CRW 3310 or CRW 4906, submit four poems; for CRW 3110 or CRW 4905, submit one short story or excerpt from longer work (up to 20 pp.). For ENG 4133, submit a short (approx. 500 words) summary of the film script you want to write.

The Manuscript Submission Cover Sheet indicates whether individual instructors require you to submit hard copies of your manuscripts to their mailboxes in Turlington 4301 or via email.

All submissions must be received by the October 14, 2009 deadline.

Manuscript Submission Guidelines & Cover Sheet


ENC 3310

Advanced Exposition

Lacy Hodges

This course will address the methods and modes of expository writing. We’ll spend the first few weeks of the semester studying a variety expository writing techniques and essays, and will analyze and discuss these methods and examples. The remainder of the semester will focus heavily on the practice of expository writing.

Possible texts may include:


ENC 3312

Advanced Argumentative Writing

Christopher Hazlett

In this course, we will consider principles of written argumentation, and you will practice those principles extensively as you write your own arguments.

We will spend the first few weeks of the semester reading and discussing a theory of logical argumentation. This will give you terms for talking and thinking about the arguments you write. After the exam, we will spend the bulk of the semester doing two things: 1) we will meet as a class once a week to discuss principles of clear and graceful writing, and 2) each of you will meet once a week with me to talk and think about your own arguments.

You will write six papers in this class: three short (3–4 pages) arguments and three long (8–10 pages) arguments. These papers will be graded for organizational, argumentative, and stylistic clarity and effectiveness.

Required texts will include:

Additional readings will be made available online.


ENC 3414

Hypermedia – Surface-Work

Terry Harpold

The founding assumption of this course is that reading and writing in the era of digital hypermedia are surface practices. Our relations to and interactions with expressive surfaces of the computer screen are in some respects variants of very old practices of the printed page and book; in other respects, they appear to be wholly novel, in not only their basic operations but also their cultural and historical significance. We will explore some of the varieties of hypermedia surface-work and try to understand what in them may be genuinely new and what may be familiar, once we are reminded of the native hypermedia capabilities of print.

Course readings will draw on historical texts of new media studies (works by Bob Brown, and Vannevar Bush), short or excerpted works by contemporary scholars, and several canonical digital fictions and poetry of the last two decades.

A highlight of the course will be “Futures of Digital Studies 2010,” the fifth annual international conference of the Digital Assembly, UF’s graduate research group in new media studies. Participants in this two-day conference (February 25–27, 2010) will include some of the most influential scholars in new media studies, and the event will represent an unparalleled testbed for our investigations of the diversity and depth of the digital field.

All graded written work for the course will be completed in the course wiki. (A wiki is a WWW site that supports collaborative editing of shared documents by a defined group of users.) Basic knowledge of WWW- and image-editing applications may be to students’ advantage for some assignments, but is not required.

Written course requirements include individual student reading logs for some assigned readings, a collaborative group report on the Digital Assembly conference, a collaborative group reading project, and two take-home exams.


ENG 3113

Movies as Narrative Art

Robert Ray

When a character in Doris Lessing’s Golden Notebook suggests that she could turn a serious novel into a romance simply by leaving out certain kinds of words, we remember the old lesson: how stories get told makes all the difference. This course will examine the storytelling choices made by writers and filmmakers by starting with the effect those choices have on us as readers or viewers. Since the course assumes no previous study of the cinema, English majors concentrating on literature should not fear starting from behind. Conversely, however, students interested primarily, or exclusively in film should note that we will devote roughly half our time to literature.

Readings will include stories by Hardy, Doyle, Chekhov, and Hemingway; novels by Simenon, Penelope Fitzgerald, Anthony Powell, and perhaps F. Scott Fitzgerald. We will watch movies by Rohmer, Whit Stillman, Capra, and other Classical Hollywood filmmakers.

Assignments: daily reading quizzes, oral presentation, two papers, final exam.


ENG 4015

Psychological Approaches – Freud

Peter L. Rudnytsky

The course will focus on a close reading of the original 1900 edition of Freud’s masterpiece, The Interpretation of Dreams. We will also read other key texts from the years 1898-1901, including “Screen Memories,” On Dreams, and selected chapters of The Psychopathology of Everyday Life. We will be seeking to understand Freud’s theories, but also the personal contexts of his work, including the possibility that he engaged in a covert affair with his wife’s sister, Minna Bernays. Freud is a great writer, but this course will not engage directly with literature, so students should take it only if they are interested in learning about Freud and psychoanalysis. As a bonus feature, we will make an excursion to the UF Sleep Lab in order to learn something about the contemporary scientific approach to sleep and dreams. Course requirements include a midterm, a final, and one five-page paper.


ENG 4130

African Cinema in a World Cinema Context

Amy Ongiri

Images of Africa have haunted cinema history from the first Lumiere films to Jean Rouch and the French New Wave and recent Hollywood films such as Out of Africa and The Constant Gardner. The film history of Africa exists not only as a commentary and corrective to the cinematic history of representing Africa in the West, but also as an important voice in a developing world cinematic discourse on the relationship between aesthetics and politics, the limits of cinematic realism and national cinema as categories of both production and analysis, and questions of aesthetic production and popular reception. In this class we will look at African films from a variety of genres and national contexts in order to examine questions of “authenticity” and authorship, diaspora and memory, development concerns and production limitations in the African context, and the filmic reworking of colonial history and oral literature among other topics. Our examination of these films will be informed by the critical theory of Mbye Cham, Nwachukwu Frank Ukadike, Francoise Pfaff, Manthia Diawara, Melissa Thackway, Haile Gerima, Hamid Nacify, and Teshome H. Gabriel among others.


ENG 4133

Psyching Out Psychoanalysis

Richard Burt

We will read a series of Sigmund Freud’s writings on the death drive, the repetition compulsion, and the uncanny; critical writings on the history of stereoscopic and 3D cinema; and philosophical writings on incomprehensibility and unintelligibility, all in conjunction with films concerned with the visualization of the invisible, namely, death on film. Knowledge of film analysis and active class participation are a must. For more information, please go to < http://www.clas.ufl.edu/~burt/unintelgbledethbyflm/>.


ENG 4133

Shelf-Life: Media Histories

Richard Burt

What happens you when you shelve and reshelve your books and DVDs? Why do you reshelve them? Why do you reorganize your netflix queue? What might our desire for s(h)elf-help tell us about ego psychology and psychoanalysis? What happens when you no longer have room to keep your books and DVDs in one place, when some are in your office and some are in your home (office)? What happens to the division between work station and home when you need to store your libraries and notes elsewhere(s) for a future time (in back up discs, exernal hard drives, and self-storage units), the assumption being that you will need them eventually even though they are useless to you now? What is the desire for shelf life about? What kinds of narratives of the self can it provide or not provide? What do self-storage units tell you about the mechanisms of your memory and unconscious? What happens when you are stored by the state, when your life has been recorded without your consent and must be recovered from the state typically in redacted form? What kind of story can you tell about yourself/ves off the record(s), as it were? Is the desire for self-storage about enclosing oneself, securing oneself in a refuge, or about escaping panopticon prisons of knowledge and becoming a refugee? What’s the difference between storing yourself and pawning yourself, refinding an object that you once owned and later discovered is now for sale? And what do U-Haul transit mechanisms of objects, devices, and data tell us about the transitory temporality of research, knowledge, and bodies? Is it possible to take a (Yo)U-Turn? What are we to make of the present trajectory away from home and office and toward office / home, from living in a home to living homeless out of a (file) box, a way of life hardly different from entombing oneself alive in a time capsule or vault and opened, exhumed, or unsealed and read in the future after one’s death? Is it ever possible to skip loading and unloading data / records when moving back and forth from text / data / dada base to storage space? How does stored data stack up as knowledge? Can book(ed) knowledge ever be unbound when made digital, or will “spineless” books turn out to be spellbinding, that is, reading being a not so new way of (re)binding the book? Is the default for reading / data processing the user or the reuser (and loser)? In this seminar, we will explore these and similar questions through a number of challenging readings on the history and sizes of the archive; the law; filing systems; recording devices; software, hardware, and wetwares; history of the book / shelf; psychoanalysis; writing machines; and film. For more information, please go to < http://www.clas.ufl.edu/~burt/shelhelp/>.


ENG 4133


Mary Robison

Introduction to screenwriting is a very thorough study of the screenplay’s many conventions and aspects. Put simply, students will learn the form in all its parts and develop (or refine) their abilities at writing different elements. Exercises include writing a montage, for instance, and writing a series of shots (as used in chase scenes, gunfights, or barroom brawls), working with memory, dreams, and flashbacks. In addition to class meetings, there will be an indie film shown each week which students will be required to attend, view, and critique in writing.


ENG 4134

Women & Film

Maureen Turim

This course is crosslisted with WST 4936 (8445).

This course will examine how women have been represented in film, how they have participated in film production, and how they consume film images. We will look at various feminist approaches and the range of debates as to how to address these issues.

The course will have several goals: to introduce you to the history of women in film, to increase your skills in reading film and in reading critical writing about film, and to enhance your understanding of the relation between writing critical analysis and feminist theory.

Emphasis will be on such basic issues as viewer identification and cultural context as currently formulated through various feminist and post-structuralist methodologies. We will explore how feminism intersects with psychoanalysis, ideology, deconstruction and related approaches. We will examine the conjuncture of theoretical issues with an experience of specific texts, and the function of these texts in the past and present workings of history.

Course Requirements: Two papers of 8 pages each (35% and 35%), plus class discussion and miscellaneous assignments (30%). Participation in class discussion is essential. WebCT participation as well. Students must attend scheduled screenings.


ENG 4135

Japanese Cinema

Joseph Murphy

This course is crosslisted with JPT 3391 (6311).

This course is designed to introduce the student to the formal, historical and cultural features of Japanese film that have combined to give this tradition a unique and privileged place in western film criticism. As such we will have to prosecute two tasks in parallel: First will be acquiring the formal, technical and critical tools to talk about film as film, and not just story. Second will be working to acquire enough knowledge of Japan in the 20th century to satisfy our desire to be culturally and historically accurate. We will use Bordwell/ Thompson’s Film Art as a basic text for the first task, and Anderson/ Richie’s The Japanese Film: Art and Industry as a basic text for the second. However, a required course reader will provide weekly readings that will reinforce, supplement, question and criticize the perspectives we find there.


ENG 4136

Video Production

Roger Beebe

This course is designed as an introduction to a broad range of practices sometimes labeled “experimental video.” The focus of the course will be exclusively on non-narrative approaches to the theory and practice of videomaking. Students will work on a number of short projects throughout the semester (about one every two weeks) that engage simultaneously with different theoretical problems, technological challenges, and aesthetic strategies. The projects will span all of the stages of video production from conception to sound editing as well as a wide variety of aesthetic forms. The course will conclude with a short final project of the your own devising that grows out of one or a number of the theories and formal approaches that we have explored during the semester.

No previous experience with video production is required (or even expected) – what is necessary is a willingness to throw out all preconceptions and submit to the experimental nature of the course. Interested students should contact the instructor via email at <rogerbb@ufl.edu> as early as possible (at least a week before the beginning of advance registration if possible), because seats are very limited.


ENG 4139

Television & Electronic Culture

Aaron Kashtan

This course will explore how the materiality of inscription (i.e. lettering and drawing) is transformed by the introduction of digital techniques of visual representation, with special reference to the effects of such transformations on narrativity. Dominant traditions of visual representation, from Renaissance perspective to the classical Hollywood cinema, have treated the viewing surface as a transparent and invisible window into a three-dimensional space. Letters and drawings tend to be systematically excluded from works in such traditions, because by virtue of their two-dimensionality and their self-evidently constructed and material nature, these types of signs necessarily problematize the illusion of transparency. In our present cultural moment, thanks to the widespread availability and unprecedented power of computer graphics, the aesthetic of transparency seems to have reached its apex. Yet paradoxically, in today's popular culture we also find a renewed emphasis on the written or drawn line and its materiality.

Computer graphics may seem to threaten the very survival of writing and drawing, and yet despite or because of this, visual narratives are as much “about” writing and drawing now as ever before.

In this course, therefore, we will examine texts from various media – including animated film, television, video games, and comics – as examples of how the rise of computer graphics affects the materiality of writing and drawing. We will also ask what these texts suggest about the effect of computer graphics on the traditional humanist values associated with manual production of words and images.

Theoretical readings may be drawn from the following:

Texts for analysis may include:


ENG 4905

Independent Study

Faculty Member of Choice

An Independent Study course may be taken for 1 to 3 credit hours, but will only count toward the fulfillment of the 10-course requirement for the English major if a student registers for 3 credit hours.

This course is for advanced students who desire to supplement the regular courses by independent reading or research under the guidance of a member of the faculty. The student must find a faculty member who is willing to supervise the semester-long study, and together, the two create a project. The student must meet with the professor at designated times, agreed upon in advance, and complete all assignments in a timely manner.


ENG 4936

Honors Seminar: Joyce & Cultural Studies

R. Brandon Kershner

The course will be an introduction both to James Joyce and to the broad field of cultural studies, using Joyce’s fiction as examples of literary texts with particularly rich cultural resonance. We will read Dubliners, A Portrait of the Artist, and Ulysses in conjunction with selected essays from the cultural studies reader. Our emphases will include the areas of

Although the course obviously will engage with theory, the stress will be upon specific implications of the literary texts rather than upon the theory in and for itself. As an aid in reading Ulysses, we will use Harry Blamires’s guide to that novel entitled The New Bloomsday Book. I will bring in copies of newspapers and advertisements of the time as well as some examples of the popular reading to which Joyce alludes, show slides of Eugen Sandow the bodybuilder and memorial photography of children, and discuss other examples of material culture from turn-of-the-century Ireland. Since I am involved in the production of a hypertext Ulysses, we may discuss aspects of that project throughout the course, as it relates to issues raised by cultural studies.

Texts: The Norton Critical edition of Dubliners (ed. Norris) and the Bedford Books 2nd edition of A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man (ed. Kershner); Hans Walter Gabler’s edition of Ulysses and Harry Blamires’s The New Bloomsday Book. These are available at Goering’s. I will also be distributing material as handouts during the course.

Requirements: (1, 2) Two papers, the first 8-10 pages long, the second 12-18 pages. (3) About three or four unannounced quizzes – very simple ones – to make sure we’re all keeping up with the reading. These three requirements will weigh roughly the same in determining 85% of your grade; an additional 15% or so will be determined by class participation. My attendance policy is that missing more than two classes during the semester will automatically lower your grade.


ENG 4936

Honors Seminar: Transnational Cinema

Scott Nygren

By the end of the twentieth century, filmmakers increasingly began to produce postnational narratives that cross the boundaries of two or more different cultures. Within the national organization of film history that usually prevails, these films appear as if they were marginal, yet they are one of the most significant developments in world cinema today. At best, these filmmakers are capable of insights absent from either the classic Hollywood system or alternative national traditions. Often these films assume alienation and instability, while they seek to represent cultural displacement, economic migration, and nomadic knowledge. This course addresses the conflicted and potentially generative space between cultures that these films continually reconstitute.

Films may include: Gurinder Chadha’s Bhaji at the Beach, about a group of Indian women in England; David Achkar’s Allah Tantou, a search for a father who was an African diplomat executed in postcolonial Guinea; Wayne Wang, Eat a Bowl of Tea, where a Chinese-American young man returns to China in the 1940s; Masayuki Suo’s Shall We Dance?, about a Japanese man learning to tango; Merzak Allouache’s Salut Cousin! (France, 1996), in which an Algerian black-marketer spends an unexpected week with his neurotic Parisian cousin; and Wong Kar Wai’s Happy Together (Hong Kong, 1997), about the struggle of two gay men from Hong Kong living in Buenos Aires.


ENG 4936

Honors Seminar: Critics: Walter Benjamin

Ed White

The tradition of the oppressed teaches us that the ‘state of emergency’ in which we live is not the exception but the rule. We must attain to a conception of history that is in keeping with this insight.

--W. Benjamin

The career of Walter Benjamin offers a fascinating introduction to contemporary cultural theory. We will read across Benjamin’s career, from his more traditional writings on drama and fiction, to his writings on youth culture, film and photography, messianism, collecting, violence, story-telling, dandyism, and hashish. We will also examine some additional experimental writing by Benjamin focused on travel, history, and autobiography. The course will have a steady and demanding reading load, and weekly writing: no great familiarity with critical theory is assumed or expected.


ENG 4940


Undergraduate Coordinator

The English Department at the University of Florida offers three* credit hours of internship to its majors who provide the following to the Undergraduate Coordinator for approval:

Once the Undergraduate Coordinator has approved the internship requested by the student, the department will register the student for the internship credits.

Upon completion of the internship:

*For two credit hours, the student would need to work 8 hours per week in a Fall, Spring, or Summer C semester; and 16 hours per week for Summer A or B.

*For one credit hour, the student would need to work 4 hours per week in a Fall, Spring, or Summer C semester; and 8 hours per week for Summer A or B.

Please note the following limitations on the English Internship:


ENG 4953

Department Seminar: American Literature 1845–1855

David Leverenz

This course will focus on one of American literature’s greatest decades. Those ten years witnessed Frederick Douglass’s Narrative, Nathaniel Hawthorne’s The Scarlet Letter and The House of the Seven Gables, Herman Melville’s Moby Dick, Harriet Beecher Stowe’s Uncle Tom’s Cabin, Henry David Thoreau’s Walden, the first edition of Walt Whitman’s Leaves of Grass, and Harriet Jacobs’s Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl, though she couldn't publish it for five more years. That decade also featured the extraordinary popularity of Henry Wadsworth Longfellow’s poems (Evangeline, Hiawatha), the rise of women’s best sellers (e.g., Susan Warner’s The Wide, Wide World), and Ralph Waldo Emerson’s continued influence with Representative Men. Edgar Allan Poe, who died in 1849, wrote some of his most disturbing stories, e.g., “Hop-Frog.” Melville wrote some extraordinary stories too, especially “Bartleby, the Scrivener.” And there’s much more.

We won’t be able to read all those works, and the class will make some of the choices. I’ll be assigning Douglass’s Narrative, Jacobs’s Incidents, Melville’s Moby Dick (probably excerpted), Stowe’s Uncle Tom’s Cabin, and Whitman’s Leaves of Grass. I’ll open the choice of other texts to you.

Most of the course will emphasize close readings. We’ll also try to situate this extraordinary literary efflorescence in its tumultuous social context, so filled with racial and religious ferment as the U.S. expanded to the Pacific Coast. In 1855 the Civil War was only six years away. This was the decade in which the nation simultaneously consolidated and started to split apart.

I’ll begin with a close reading exercise in the first two weeks of the course, and I’ll also ask you to list the ten most important events in American history from 1845 to 1855. I’ll use our lists to make a composite time line. About a month later you’ll be asked to write a 5–6 page comparative close reading, and a 12–15 page research essay will be due at the end of the course. There won’t be any exams or oral reports. I’ll start the double period by asking each of you to say what issue or passage you’d like to talk about that day, and we’ll usually build our discussion from those responses. Late essays will have lowered grades, and grades will also be lowered if you miss more than four classes (double period counts as two).

I’m away this Fall, so if you have any questions, e-mail me at ldavid@ufl.edu.


ENG 4970

Honors Thesis Project

Faculty members (2) of Choice

Students must have have completed at least one semester of ENG 4936, Honors Seminar. Open to English Honors students.

The student must select two faculty members: one to direct the reading, research, and writing of a thesis on a topic of the student’s and director’s chosing, and another as the second reader. An abstract (100 to 200 words) and one copy of the thesis (30 to 50 pages) must be delivered to the CLAS Academic Advising Center on Fletcher Road at least 10 days before graduation.


ENL 3122

The English Novel: Nineteenth Century

Sarah Bleakney

One of the goals of this course will be to understand the major cultural conversations occurring in Britain during the long nineteenth century. Channeling these conversations through a selection of the novels of the era, this class will engage these issues through in-class discussions and a variety of assignments. We will focus on a number of issues that were important to the British of the late-eighteenth and early- to mid-nineteenth centuries and continue to be debated in our own time – such as gender roles, class conflicts, the impact of industrialization, amongst others – using the literary, cultural, and historical context of marriage and courtship as a framework.

Other goals of this course include becoming familiarized with a wide range of texts from and about the long nineteenth century, learning how to read these texts critically, and constructing essays that are thoughtful and persuasive. In addition to regular reading journals, you will also write two papers.

In addition to criticism and non-fiction, possible novels include:


ENL 3154

Modern British Poetry

Marsha Bryant

This course provides in-depth analysis of W.B. Yeats, Wilfred Owen, W.H. Auden, Stevie Smith, Dylan Thomas, Philip Larkin, Ted Hughes, Michael Hofmann, and newly named Laureate Carol Ann Duffy. We’ll look at their poems, lives, and cultural contexts. As we move across the semester, we’ll find that gender, family, and nation become increasingly dislocated as traditional concepts of “British poetry” and “Englishness” shift after 1900. Course assignments are two papers, a panel presentation, a parody, reading quizzes, and engaged participation in discussion.


ENL 3231

Age of Johnson

Brian McCrea

Johnson’s life spanned the years 1709-1784. We will focus on his essays from the 1750s (the essays that, along with his Dictionary, made him famous) and on the works of his later contemporaries–Thomas Gray, William Collins, Christopher Smart, Frances Burney. We will place Johnson over against these writers to develop a sense of how he both fit into and rebelled against his age. As background for our study of Johnson, we will begin with selections from John Dryden and Alexander Pope, then study the relationship between Johnson’s most famous poem and the heroic couplets of his great precursors.

Students will write a final examination and will have the option of writing a long paper (10–12 pp.) on a topic of their choice or two shorter papers (5–6 pp.) on topics I suggest. Most classes will open with students writing informally for 5 to 10 minutes on that day’s reading. Class sessions will encourage discussion. The first hour of the Thursday class typically will center discussion upon a single essay. Students who have difficulty speaking in class should see me about other ways to participate.

The examination will include identification and short answer questions. Students will need to know the significance of specific characters, objects, events and quotations. All the questions will come from points repeatedly made in my lectures.

All papers must be word-processed. I am happy to read and comment upon early drafts of papers and encourage e-mail submission of them via attachments in richtext format.


All these will be available at Goering’s Bookcenter, 1717 N. W. 1st Avenue


ENL 3251

Exoticism in Victorian Literature

Regina Martin

Exoticism is a fascination with the strange or unusual that manufactures otherness and renders it harmless as an object of pleasurable wonder and awe.

By the end of Queen Victoria’s reign, over one quarter of the globe was under British control. The dramatic expansion of the British Empire during this period necessarily posed challenges to the construction and maintenance of a national identity purportedly grounded in a common language, race, and cultural traditions. In this class we will look at how exoticism in Victorian literature legitimizes the exploitative power dynamics of the British imperial project by working the colonized “other” into the national imaginary, not as citizen, but as object of fascinated delight.

Tentative readings include Wilkie Collins’s The Moonstone, Arthur Conan Doyle’s A Study in Scarlet, Bram Stoker’s Dracula, and Joseph Conrad’s Lord Jim. We will also read a number of poems and short works of fiction and non-fiction.  Assignments will include regular reading response papers, a presentation, and two longer essays of 7–10 pages.


ENL 4273

Twentieth-Century British Literature: Conrad, Joyce, Woolf & Modernism: Empire, Revolution, & Utopia

Camelia Raghinaru

Ever since Chinua Achebe’s 1975 public lecture entitled “An Image of Africa: Racism in Conrad's Heart of Darkness,” in which he presented Conrad as “a thoroughgoing racist” who places the African “other” in antithesis with the civilized European, criticism on Conrad has been bound up with a series of questions regarding the relationship between literature and empire. The new imperialism emerging around the 1890s coincided with, and determined, the emergence of a new conception of modernity that explores questions of Empire beyond the boundaries of the nation-state, to its global dimensions. This course takes as its project an exploration of modernism at the height of the imperial venture, and the way cultural and artistic movements we now designate as modernist articulated, and were shaped by, their engagement with imperialism. Through the texts of Conrad we will investigate a vision of empire which institutes new regimes of control, the way in which the failure of imperialism and anarchism open up the possibility for the modernist revolution, as well as the failure of the ethical codes of individualism and heroism in view of the capitalist expansion. With Joyce we will experience firsthand the fragmentation of the colonized psyche as we struggle along with Stephen Dedalus to awaken from the nightmare of history and with Bloom to create alternative histories and utopias to the master narratives that legitimate the authority and ideologies of Church and State. A complete tour of the empire will take us to the heart of Woolf’s London, the place where we interrogate the dynamics between imperialism and the metropolis, the structures of patriarchy, and the fascist fantasies of both. In addition to the social and historical contexts of these texts we will consider the cultural conditions of production: issues of marginalization (given that the three most important “British” modernist writers’ extraction or gender – that is, Conrad’s immigrant status, Joyce’s Irishness, and Woolf’s status as a woman writer – was viewed as problematic in the traditional British cultural context); the rise of mass culture, monopoly capitalism, and globalism; the metropolis as the center of possibility for social and political revolutions, female emancipation, and the creation of utopias; and finally, in its failures and successes, modernism as an expression of revolution, its utopian and messianic potential, and its underlying nihilism.

Proposed Texts: Conrad’s Lord Jim, Nostromo, and The Secret Agent; Joyce’s Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man and Ulysses (selections); Woolf’s To the Lighthouse, A Room of One’s Own, and The Waves.


ENL 4311


James Paxson

This course will familiarize students with the major narrative poetry of Chaucer. We will devote most of our study to several of The Canterbury Tales and to Chaucer’s less commonly read and known dream allegories. We will also look at Latin and Italian source materials included in our two textbooks. Students will learn to read Chaucer’s Middle English (the form of the English language from about 1100–1500 CE), and they will be introduced to the principal methodological issues constitutive of contemporary Chaucer studies. That is, they will investigate how Chaucer studies incorporate modern critical theory – especially involving issues of narrative complexity, figurative discourse, the formalism of Chaucerian genre (especially the frame narrative or novella) and the poetic representation of gender. Particular focus will fall upon the issue of subjectivity, since Chaucer, who is often seen as the forerunner of modern novelistic art, lays claim to being the first major author in English to cultivate the poetics of the subjective, the personal, and the psychologically realistic. Class meetings will include lectures, discussion, and, especially early in the term, recitation and spot translation of Middle English.

Required texts, which will most likely be ordered through Goerings Bookstore, will include the Norton Critical Edition of The Canterbury Tales (Kolve and Olson, eds.); the Norton Critical Edition of Dream Visions and Other Poems (Lynch, ed.); and The Cambridge Chaucer Companion, 2nd. ed. (Boitani and Mann, eds.).

Major course work includes: class participation and regular, unannounced quizzes (20%); translation exam (in February, 20%); three papers – the first (5–7 pages) on The Knight’s Tale and The House of Fame; the second (5–7 pages) on classical myths, biblical stories, or folktales that served as sources for Chaucer (20%; note that this second project might take the form of an in-class midterm exam); the third (5–7 pages) on a critical or thematic problem concerning The Canterbury Tales or the allegories (5–7 pages). All three papers combine to represent 60% of final grade.


ENL 4333

Shakespeare: Learning by Doing

Sidney Homan

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 numerous other 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 the seminar 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. 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.

In the seminar we will thus consider A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Twelfth Night, The Merchant of Venice, Henry IV, Part I, Hamlet, Macbeth, The Taming of the Shrew, Othello, Much Ado about Nothing, and Stoppard’s Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead, which, of course, offers a playwright’s reworking of Shakespeare’s Hamlet. At the end of the seminar, we will see An Evening with William Shakespeare, at the Acrosstown Repertory Theatre, a collage of scenes from his plays.

A word of comfort: whether you have acted before or not, experience in the theatre is not a factor in the seminar. We use acting as a way of studying the text. Have no fears on this issue!


ENL 4333


Peter Rudnytsky

This course will be the first in a projected four-semester sequence of Shakespeare’s complete works. The plays to be covered will span the years 1589–94 and include Shakespeare’s earliest achievements in comedy, tragedy, and history: 1, 2, & 3 Henry VI, Two Gentlemen of Verona, The Taming of the Shrew, Titus Andronicus, Richard III, The Comedy of Errors, and Love’s Labor’s Lost. We will also read his poems Venus and Adonis and The Rape of Lucrece, as well as key plays by his contemporaries Christopher Marlowe and Thomas Kyd. The approach will be primarily psychoanalytic and feminist, but attention will also be given to textual problems. Course requirements are a midterm, final, and one five-page paper. Regular attendance and active participation in class discussions are also expected.


LIT 3003

Narrative Experiments

John Leavey

This course is divided into two parts, and like many of the texts that we will read, it may become apparent that these two parts are one and the same, one a subset of the other, or multiply different, totally unrelated. For some, these considerations would seem to be the divide between theory and practice/application, but each of these texts would complicate coming to any easy solution. In any case, the relation of the two parts is what will occupy the course’s attention.

The first consideration will be the topic of “reading,” reading narratives, i.e., how to read narratives and also narratives that are about reading. The second consideration is the experience and experiment of different narrative possibilities, from short stories to pop-up books to comics to letters to the walking tour photograph archive.

Course requirements include a writing portfolio (3000 words) (40%), a group course presentation/project (40%), and course participation (which includes being responsible for class discussion in general and in the group presentation/project) (20%).

Part I Reading Narratives

Part II How Many


LIT 3003

Forms of Narrative

Donald Ault

This experimental course will focus on the transformation of plots and characters from one medium to another – especially Disney characters migrating from animation to comic strips and comic books and back again, E.C Segar’s Popeye from comic strips to Fleischer animation and Altman’s live action, and Hammett’s Sam Spade in the three film versions of The Maltese Falcon, the 1948 comic book, and a 1970s photo-film book.

Note: Some texts studied in this course may vary from those given in this description.


LIT 3041

Studies in Drama: Theater of Medieval England

James Paxson

Medieval English Theater will be an introduction to the dramatic texts of the later Middle English period, specifically the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries. Primarily, this designation covers the out-of-doors, guild-sponsored pageants of the four major and complete urban mystery cycles: Chester, Wakefield (also called the Towneley Plays), York, and N-Town (once erroneously labeled the Ludus Coventriae). It also concerns the allegorical morality plays found predominantly in the unique Macro Manuscript. We will study one complete mystery cycle, Wakefield, along with excerpts from other complete cycles as well as a number of major morality plays, such as the dramatic allegories Everyman, Mankind, Wisdom, and selections from The Castle of Perseverance.

In addition, we’ll consider fragmentary Middle English cycle pageants such as the Digby plays, the two Coventry plays of the Shearmen and Tailors, the Brome Abraham and Isaac, and the bizarre Croxton miracle play; and we may study too some of the transitional plays of the early sixteenth century. We will also treat biblical narrative since the mystery plays were wholesale dramatizations of canonical and apocryphal Judeo-Christian scripture. This study of the dramatization of biblical narrative thus entails understanding of the cultural process of contemporization (and its master trope, anachronism); we will consequently work to theorize such contemporization by looking at some twentieth-century dramatizations of biblical narrative in film form (William Keighley/Marc Connelly’s The Green Pastures; Norman Jewison’s Jesus Christ Superstar; Pasolini’s The Gospel According to St. Mark; etc.).

Course work will include some quizzes (20% of final grade), a midterm examination (20%), and two papers: one (10 pages) involving a comparative study made between a mystery play and its original biblical source material or between two similarly themed mystery plays; the other (10 pages) on any critical or theoretical problem in medieval drama studies. The two papers represent about 60% of final grade. Attendance and participation are mandatory.

Required Texts will most likely include: Hardin Craig, ed., Two Coventry Corpus Christi Plays, EETS es 87 (Oxford; available online); John Coldewey, ed., Early English Drama: An Anthology (Garland); Martial Rose, ed., The Wakefield Mystery Plays (Norton) and/or David Mills, ed., The Chester Mystery Cycle (Colleagues); John Gassner, ed., Medieval and Tudor Drama: Twenty-Four Plays (Applause Theater).


LIT 3041

Studies in Drama: Citizen Comedy & Domestic Tragedy in the Age of Shakespeare

Robert Thomson

A study of a group of plays unified by being set in the contemporary London and environs of their authors in the late sixteenth century or the opening decades of the seventeenth century. The main focus will be upon the texts and their social, political, historical and cultural contexts.

It has been suggested that City Comedy (however we define it) moved to the center of the Elizabethan Stage when Londoners started to reflect upon their new social roles and their urban setting. Social mobility with its attendant pretensions, hypocrisy, greed, pathos etc, arose in the midst of the new middle class society of trade and commerce and gave substance to these plays, as did the threatened state of an increasingly impoverished and newly dependent gentry.

The plays to be studied will be :

Two essays will be set (ca. 2000 words) and in addition there will be a number of in-class tests and oral reports. There will be no final exam. Absences will affect final grades.


LIT 3043

Modern Drama: Learning by Doing

Sid Homan

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 the seminar each student will have 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. 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.

In the seminar, we will thus consider Samuel Beckett’s Waiting for Godot, Embers, All That Fall, Play, Eh Joe, Not I, and Come and Go; Harold Pinter’s The Lover, Old Times, Betrayal, and No Man’s Land, Sam Shepard’s True West, Curse of the Starving Class, and Buried Child; and Tom Stopaprd’s Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead.

A word of comfort: whether you have acted before or not, experience in the theatre is not a factor in the seminar.  We use acting as a way of studying the text.  Have no fears on this issue!


LIT 3173

Motherhood in Modern Hebrew Fiction

Avraham Balaban

This course is crosslisted with HBT 3564 (2112), JST 3930 (4637) and WST 3930 (5331).

The course examines the different representations of motherhood in Hebrew fiction throughout the twentieth century against the background of contemporary theories about motherhood. The course starts with motherhood as it is depicted in the writing of the founders of modern Hebrew fiction (S-Y. Agnon, Dvorah Baron), reviews mothers portrayed by the 1948 generation, then concentrates on the “New Wave” writers of the 1960s, and the new generation of women writers in the 1990s. In the fiction of the 1960s we find three different models of motherhood: a) the overly dedicated, self-effacing mother, who does not leave breathing space to her children; b) the mentally sick mother, who abandons her children (mainly in the fiction of Amos Oz); c) the alienated mother, who is busy pursuing her spiritual journeys (Amalia Kahana-Carmon).

In the last two decades, a new generation of women writers has added several dimensions to these models. With the typical shift of point of view from a child-narrator to a mother–narrator, the concept of the mother as a nurturing, self–sacrificing, almost selfless creature, who lives to serve her children, has almost disappeared. Instead, motherhood is described as a conflict-ridden situation. The tensions associated with motherhood have varied sources: a) the inherent difficulties of motherhood, of giving birth and raising a family (The Ravens by Avirama Golan), b) personal wishes and needs, i.e. the wish to start a new relation and a new family (Tsruya Shalev and Mira Magen), c) the national demands (sending a child to the army; Dolly City by Orly Castel-Blum); d) living with an abusive husband (Sdomel by Lea Eini).


LIT 3383

Women’s Autobiographical Literature

Amanda Davis

This course is crosslisted with WST 3930 (1036).

This class will focus on a number of remarkable autobiographies by female authors, with a special focus on women’s memoirs of activism and their accounts of living on various borders. We will read narratives of imprisonment, reservation life, and ongoing struggles for justice (and that is just to get us started). Contemporary texts by women of color will be placed at the center of study, with close examination of how these authors explore and problematize issues surrounding subjectivity, power, identity, and resistance. We will address such topics as why so many women have utilized autobiography to respond to key social and political events, as well as how these texts contribute to women’s intellectual and activist history.


LIT 3383

African Women Writers

Rose sau Lugano

This course is crosslisted with SSW 4713 (6937) and WST 3930 (7466).

The course we will allow students to explore African women writers and critics, look at their theoretical priorities, literary themes and cultural positions. It is designed to provide students with both a specific and a general view of the status, achievements and experiences of African women in fiction. Using different genres (poems, novels and plays), and diverse texts we will endeavor to understand how women’s literary expression has been shaped by history, culture, and their experiences, as well as see how they are addressing issues of gender in their respective societies. Discussions will focus on issues of identity, oppression, resistance, exile, language, translation and colonialism. Additionally, students will examine how African women writers are using writing itself as a tool for social transformation and critique.


LIT 3400

Internet Literature

Greg Ulmer

The general topic for this seminar is the relationship of technology to literature. Specifically, we will focus on what happens to literary forms and their study in the medium of the World Wide Web. Our interest in part is in the migration of print forms and modes onto the Internet, and also in the emergence of new forms of creativity native to the Internet. Lev Manovich, in The Language of New Media, observes that the cut-and-paste tools of hypermedia authoring embody the aesthetics created by the experimental arts of 1920s modernism. This observation provides a point of departure for our own experiments, investigating the relationship between experimental poetics, the digital medium, and Internet creativity. The primary goal of the course is to adapt the practices of new media creativity to the design of a mode of study native to the Internet. The course is taught in a CIRCA classroom. The course project is created in the blog medium, supplemented by basic photoshop. We will experiment with the design of a new mode of study that takes advantage of the resources of hypermedia and the aesthetics of popular culture and surrealism. The semester project is to design and test the “learning screen,” that does for Internet culture what the “research paper” did for print education. Previous experience with Web authoring (blog, photoshop) is helpful but not required. However, beginners should expect to spend some extra time learning to use the authoring environment.

Required readings (tentative):


LIT 4183

Tourism, the Caribbean & Literature

Leah Rosenberg

Documenting the devastating effects of globalization and tourism on the Jamaican economy and autonomy, Stephanie Black’s 2001 film Life and Debt sets in sharp relief the contrast between tourists’ vision of Jamaica and that of Jamaicans in the late 20th century. It reveals the most recent developments in a long cultural and economic history. From Shakespeare’s The Tempest to Terry McMillan’s How Stella Got Her Groove Back and Walt Disney’s The Pirates of the Caribbean, travel and tourism to the Caribbean have been surprisingly prominent and spectacular in European and U.S. culture. This strong and changing image of the Caribbean has in large part been a consequence of the economic position of the Caribbean vis-à-vis first world nations – first a wondrous new world, then a site of slave and sugar factories, now a pleasure destination. Not surprisingly, Caribbean writers have also given a significant place to tourism and travel in their work, often exposing the sharp disjunction between Caribbeans’ experiences and those of tourists. Recently this distinction has been complicated by the many Caribbeans living outside the region who visit their homelands as tourists for carnival and other events like Reggae Sunsplash. This course examines the economic and literary history of tourism in the Caribbean through an analysis of theoretical and literary texts which will likely include works by Daniel Defoe, Derek Walcott, Jamaica Kincaid, V.S. Naipaul, Anthony Trollope, Anthony Winkler, Paule Marshall, and Terry Mcmillan.


LIT 4194

Afro-European Literature

Mark Reid

This undergraduate course examines contemporary literature about and or by Afro-Europeans and Black American expatriates in Western Europe. Weekly readings will cover literature, critical theory, philosophy, and political essays that imaginatively represent the socioeconomic and cultural integration or non-integration of Afro-Europeans (citizens and immigrants in Western Europe) who have ancestral ties to North and sub-Saharan Africa.

In writing the analytical papers, students must critically analyze (using various theoretical strategies) the sociocultural tensions that the course readings and film screenings dramatize. Students must discuss literary and or film form as well as how gender, sexuality, nationality, class, or religion (select only two) create new identity formations and or maintain previous ways of seeing and being by the immigrant and the (un)welcoming nation.

I. Required Texts:

Note: Assigned articles are on reserve in Library West (Smathers). Check the ARES List for this course AND REID LIT 6358: Afro-European Literature and Visual Culture, to see if any articles are available as PDF files that you can download from the ARES Website. Look under REID (ENGLISH DEPT).

II. Course Requirements:


LIT 4194

Fictions of Africa: Literatures of Crisis

Apollo Amoko

This course turns on a foundational question in literary studies: what is the relationship between the realm of art – aesthetics – and the politics of everyday life – the lebenwelt. In an attempt to answer this question, we will undertake a genealogy of the contemporary literatures of Africa. As such critics as V.Y. Mudimbe and Simon Gikandi have contended, modern African literature first emerged in the late nineteen fifties and early sixties as a discourse designed to liberate African subjects from the colonial order of things. Written in the context of triumphant or, at any rate optimistic, nationalism, this literature predominantly deployed the aesthetics of realism. In hindsight, this deployment does not seem either accidental or co-incidental. These, it would seem, were literatures of radical possibility and profound optimism. Diverse critics such as Fredric Jameson, Kwame Anthony Appiah and Benedict Anderson all argue that realism is the pre-dominant aesthetic mode of nationalism.

Both the nation and the realist novel are narratives of linear progress across time. Anderson appears to suggest that the novel (along with the newspaper) was central to the possibility of imagining the modern nation. The aesthetic of the novel made it possible to think and narrate the nation in “homogeneous empty time.” To what extent are the founding texts of modern African literature causally linked to the discourses of African nationalism? If the first generation of modern African emerged in the context of triumphant anti-colonial nationalism, then, succeeding generations have been written in the wake of what has come to be known as the Africa crisis. From the late nineteen sixties onwards, the promise of postcolonial plenitude give way to pessimism and despair as everyday African life came increasingly to be characterized by abject poverty, horrific violence, endemic corruption, repressive governance, crumbling infrastructure, extreme deprivation and other forms of mass misery. From one perspective, the African postcolony has come to be defined by an interminable, if not terminal, crisis. What has the aesthetic dimension of this crisis been? To what extent have Afro-modernism, magical realism and other forms of anti-realism displaced realism in the realm of African art? To what extent can these non/anti-realist modes been seen as symptomatic of a continent in crisis? Is it possible to trace one to one correspondence, if not a causal relationship, between the dominant forms of African art and the politics of everyday African life?


LIT 4333

Literature for the Adolescent

John Cech

This course is designed to provide you with a survey of some major figures, historical trends, and critical approaches to that relatively new field of literature that occupies the shifting, transitional ground between works for children and adults. We will look at a broad range of genres and styles intended for or chosen by the adolescent reader, beginning with some canonical “classics” from the mid-twentieth century, and ending with some innovative novels from our own literary present. Taken together, these works will raise many of the questions (psychological, social, philosophical) in our discussions that are asked by adolescents themselves about their own challenging, demanding, and often defining experiences. A principle interest of the course will be to examine the ways in which successive generations have constructed their ideas of the adolescent through a variety of cultural forms, among them: literature, film, television, music, and, most recently, the internet.


LIT 4334

The Golden Age of Children’s Literature

Lisa Dusenberry

This course is an exploration of children’s fiction from mid-1800s to the early twentieth century. This period is normally classified as the first “Golden Age” of children’s literature and includes titles that have helped to shape our notion of what childhood is and how children should be portrayed. Examining the literary, cultural, and historical elements of texts from this era will allow us to question the perceived defining characteristics of both British and American golden age children’s fiction. Throughout the course, we will be discussing the attitude these texts take toward the child with special attention to their language and structure. Along with children’s periodicals and several children’s novels, we will be reading critical articles and chapters from longer critical works about the golden age of children’s literature and its larger cultural implication. Examples of critical sources might include sections of Marah Gubar’s Artful Dodgers and Juliet Dusinberre’s Alice to the Lighthouse. Many golden age texts made an impression not only in their own time, but continue to shape contemporary culture in their “after lives.” As such, we will often discuss how golden age texts have transformed themselves over time. This will be a discussion-based seminar, so course participation will be vital.

The reading list will likely include:


LIT 4483

Issues & Methods of Cultural Studies

Barbara Mennel

This course is crosslisted with GET 3501 (5526).

This course introduces students to the issues and methodology used in cultural studies through the example of the cultural representation of the city of Berlin. The course will address cultural studies in relationship to art, film, literature, drama, social movements, urban studies, architecture, photography, and music. Upon completion of this course, students will have a working knowledge of the history and culture of Berlin but also an understanding of larger issues regarding the relationship of culture and the city. Because of the 20th anniversary of the fall of the Wall, we will spend significant time on the Wall and the implications of 1989. Films may include but are not limited to Berlin: Symphony of a Great City, Metropolis, Run Lola Run and Good Bye Lenin.


LIT 4483

“CyberNomads & Cosmic Diasporas”: The African Diasporic Presence in Europe

Amy Ongiri

Course description not available at this time.


LIT 4930

Plague & European Culture

Stephanie Boluk

This course is crosslisted with EUS 4930 (8765).

This course will be dedicated to examining the representational strategies that have been used to cope with an epidemic for which there was no effective means of control and which was without a cure until 1932. We will investigate the same question that was asked by the 1989 Oxford Conference on Epidemics and Ideas on “whether there was not a common 'dramaturgy'” (Slack qtd in Gomel) that can be identified in the representation of plagues? We will also ask the question of whether there are issues specific to the European countries considered in the various plague texts we will read. This course takes a pan-media approach to the study of plague. We will pay close attention to how media interact with each other to form a complex media ecology and the way these interactions influence the epistemological and ontological structures of plague in the European imaginary.

According to René Girard, the chief crisis that a plague produces is the crisis of “undifferentiation” — the “destruction of specificities” (833). The plague infects regardless of any class, racial or national distinction; it ignores borders and destroys the perceived demarcations between self and other. From the bubonic plague, an internal, mysterious enemy that terrorized Europe throughout most of its history, to the increased popularity of the genre of zombie epidemics in recent film and literature, these disaster narratives are loaded with allegorical significance. This course will attempt to unpack some of these meanings. Using texts that range from the historian Thucydides’ survivor account of the Plague of Athens, to Daniel Defoe’s first protoype of the English novel in Journal of the Plague Year to Danny Boyle’s biothriller 28 Days Later, we will look at the way the rhetoric of plague has been harnessed as a vehicle for articulating xenophobic and genocidal ideas, postcolonial anxieties, and the network anxieties that emerge as a response to globalization and the spread of capitalism. We will observe the way millenarianism, which historically always has been a part of European culture, continues to manifest itself in a contemporary context and the kinds of fears that undergird these eschatological expressions. We will explore the relationship between the individual body to the body politic and the way biomedical discourses interleave with moral, political and artistic discourses.

Required Materials


LIT 4930

Dante for English Majors

R. Allen Shoaf

We will read all of Dante’s Commedia and all of the Vita Nuova; we will also, as occasion warrants, read in others of Dante’s major works, especially the Convivio, De Vulgari Eloquentia, and Monarchia. Our rhythm will consist in roughly five weeks per each canticle of the Commedia.

The writing assignment for the seminar will consist in three essays (five pages each) plus short weekly quizzes to assess the pace and quality of the reading. The essays are to be one on each of the three canticles of the Commedia (we will work out topics as we go). Your final grade will be determined, then, by your performance in class meetings and your writing in these essays.

In addition, we will make extensive use of the World Wide Web to access the wealth of resources available for Dante Studies, including especially the “Princeton Dante Project” <http://etcweb.princeton.edu/dante/index.html>.


LIT 4930

Israeli Cinema

Todd Hasak-Lowy

This course is crosslisted with HBR 4930 (8463) and JST 4936 (5163).

In this class we will be watching films produced in Israel in the nearly sixty years of its history and trace the themes and forms that have shaped Israeli cinema, in part by comparing and contrasting them with American and European films. We will ask how Israeli films represent the formation of a new Jewish national society and discuss the issues that preoccupy it.  We will seek to understand how the tensions that cut through contemporary Israeli society – between Israelis and Palestinians, between Ashkenazi and Sephardi Jews, between religious and secular Jews – overlap, displace and inform each other. We will pay special attention to the construction of masculinity and femininity as informing these tensions, that is, as a central element of the representation of Israeli culture in general and of Israeli nationalism in particular.


LIT 4930

Feminist Fictions

Tace Hedrick

This course is crosslisted with WST 3930 (1943).

Course description not available at this time


SPC 3605


Ron Carpenter

Speechwriting is an advanced composition course. In this course, students acquire stylistic prowess by which their sentences have increased potential to be remembered and quoted and thereby achieve greater persuasiveness. The course is called Speechwriting because models to be imitated are in sentences of Abraham Lincoln, Franklin Roosevelt, Winston Churchill, John Kennedy, and Martin Luther King, Jr., for examples. Although you practice these stylistic skills while writing speeches, the acquired prowess is applicable in many future communication endeavors, as speakers or writers, regardless of profession. The textbook is Ronald H. Carpenter, Choosing Powerful Words: Eloquence that Works.

This course is not about supporting arguments or organizing them into broader discourse. For those skills, other courses are more appropriate. Speechwriting is about the best words and their best orders – within sentences – to achieve optimal impress of your ideas upon readers or listeners. Your writing is perfected in drafts that you aloud among peers (and for me), wherein you should acquire a sense of what to do to achieve the final product desired at the semester end. Thus, present drafts when due; listen carefully to other students’ drafts; participate in rewriting others’ sentences; and heed my commentary about all drafts. Do not assume that participation means simply presenting your drafts and listening only to commentary about them.

Your first speech will be written after we analyze and identify sources of style in Abraham Lincoln's Gettysburg Address and John Kennedy’s Inaugural Address. You will rewrite the Gettysburg Address, as Ted Sorensen would have helped John Kennedy write it. This assignment will improve your flexibility as a stylist. For the speech praising a person for whom you have great love or admiration, you must write for an actual occasion when that person will hear or read your statement (you will earn many “points” from that person as well as other people). For the speech praising an institution or ideal, you will write about something that you are likely to address in later life, perhaps as a professional person (I predict that years later you will take that text from your files and use it again for part – if not most – of a speech that you likely will give).

How a draft is presented, vocally and physically, has no bearing on your grade (for help with delivery skills other courses are appropriate; but I may make suggestions about how to improve your platform presence, however). The important point is that Speechwriting is an advanced composition course, wherein you read drafts aloud as bases of discussion by which all students understand how and why some sentences are better than others. For initial and final drafts, I require computer word processing. Revision is easier; spelling is accurate; and word lengths of drafts are known.

From past experience, I know that reasonably diligent students will achieve some of the stylistic skills taught in this course. Final grades are higher, however, as you (1) demonstrate refined prowess as the competent stylist on exams and in final drafts, (2) understand course precepts derived from readings and lecture materials, as tested by three exams during the semester (the course has no final exam), and (3) produce a final research paper about style as defined in this course (research paper options will be explained during a lecture relatively early in the semester and will require additional Web and library reading). In combination, initial drafts, exam answers wherein you demonstrate stylistic prowess, final polished drafts, group projects, and your research paper will total well over 6,000 words evaluated by me for Gordon Rule credit (in case you wish to make that claim).

Final grades are determined one–half by the average of your three exam scores and one–half by your final notebook with polished drafts of writing and the research paper – all typed, double–spaced, and turned in at the time and date listed in the University Timetable as the course final exam period. Although this is a writing course, I am impressed – for purposes of grades – by how much you know about style as defined in this course. Moreover, please appreciate that this composition course is unlike virtually all other persuasive writing courses at the University of Florida. The expertise and confidence in the precepts being taught are derived from your instructor’s own published research in six books, several book chapters, and numerous research journal articles (all of which informed my writing of your textbook).

In conclusion, teaching you to be eloquent stylists gives me great personal satisfaction. From my experience as a communications consultant for organizations outside the university (such as corporate executives, lawyers, civic leaders, hospital administrators, public relations professionals, CPAs, and officers attending the U.S. Naval War College), I know that skills acquired in this course will be useful for the rest of your life, no matter what your later profession is. The only prerequisite for the course is ability to write grammatical sentences that are spelled and punctuated correctly.


SPC 4680

Rhetorical Criticism: Masterpieces of Rhetoric

Ron Carpenter

Our focus this semester is several “masterpieces of rhetoric.” Although many of these are in the realm of political and presidential discourse, another focus is rhetoric to persuade Americans about armed conflict abroad. Thus, students will examine how some speakers, writers, and filmmakers appealed successfully to specific attitudes and actions that had profound influence upon the course of events. The primary goal of the course is a refined sense of some rhetorical principles and techniques by which their own future discourse is persuasive.

Unlike previous semesters, the course now has no textbook because much of your course material now is on-line through <http://www.americanrhetoric.com/speechbank.html>. Major class assignments are group projects. By the end of the third week of classes, you should be in a group with 5-6 other class members, who collaboratively will write speeches presented to the entire class for discussion and analyses, but these speeches in and of them selves will not be graded. Instead, for grading purposes, students individually – or in concert with 2 or 3 other peers (of their mutual choice) – will write for grades short papers identifying and evaluating the rhetorical choices and techniques utilized in the group speeches as presented and discussed in class. I am convinced that when groups argue among themselves about fulfilling assignments (including grammar and compositional prowess), final products are better. For example, after viewing Richard Nixon’s famous – or infamous – “Checkers” speech in 1952, we will study Ted Kennedy’s apologia after Ms. Kopechne died in his company. Then, groups of speechwriters will create the TV speech that Bill Clinton should have given within 48 hours after Monica Lewinsky first became newsworthy. For affiliating with other students this semester, one speechwriting group must be all male and another only females; the rest can be any combination. Short papers yield one-third of students’ final grades.

Short papers (perhaps 3 typed double spaced pages) summarize and expand upon assigned readings, films, and group projects presented in class. The fifth short paper, exclusively an individual effort, will be the enthymeme assignment, which can be any length deemed necessary. A longer, individual final paper (7–8 typed pages) will report research about some topic suggested by the course (its focus must be developed in consultation with me and will constitute another one-third of your final grade; for some research paper topics, considering the scope of the endeavor, I may approve of a collaborative research paper). The course also has an individual “take home” final exam for the final one-third. Please understand that group projects require meetings with your peers outside of regular class periods. You also are required to view some films outside of class, whether in groups or individually.