English and Comparative Literature

http://english.columbia.edu/

Departmental Office: 602 Philosophy; 212-854-3215
http://www.english.columbia.edu

Director of Undergraduate Studies: Prof. Molly Murray, 406 Philosophy; 212-854-4016; mpm7@columbia.edu

Departmental Adviser:
Prof. Molly Murray, 406 Philosophy; mpm7@columbia.edu

The program in English fosters the ability to read critically and imaginatively, to appreciate the power of language to shape thought and represent the world, and to be sensitive to the ways in which literature is created and achieves its effects. It has several points of departure, grounding the teaching of critical reading in focused attention to the most significant works of English literature, in the study of the historical and social conditions surrounding literary production and reception, and in theoretical reflection on the process of writing and reading and the nature of the literary work./p>

The courses the department offers draw on a broad range of methodologies and theoretical approaches, from the formalist to the political to the psychoanalytical (to mention just a few). Ranging from the medieval period to the 21st century, the department teaches major authors alongside popular culture, traditional literary genres alongside verbal forms that cut across media, and canonical British literature alongside postcolonial, global, and trans-Atlantic literatures.

At once recognizing traditional values in the discipline and reflecting its changing shape, the major points to three organizing principles for the study of literature—history, genre, and geography. Requiring students not only to take a wide variety of courses but also to arrange their thinking about literature on these very different grids, the major gives them broad exposure to the study of the past, an understanding of the range of forms that can shape literary meaning, and an encounter with the various geographical landscapes against which literature in English has been produced.

Advising

Students are not assigned specific advisers, but rather each year the faculty members serving on the department’s Committee on Undergraduate Education (CUE) are designated undergraduate advisers (see above). Upon declaring a major or concentration in English, students should meet with the director of undergraduate studies or a delegated faculty adviser to discuss the program, especially to ensure that students understand the requirements.

Students must fill out a Major Requirements Worksheet early in the semester preceding graduation. The worksheet must be reviewed by an adviser and submitted to 602 Philosophy before the registration period for the final semester. The worksheet is available in the English Department or on-line at http://english.columbia.edu/undergraduate/major-requirements. It is this worksheet—not the Degree Audit Report (DAR)—that determines eligibility for graduation as an English major or concentrator.

Course Information

Lectures

Generally, lectures are addressed to a broad audience and do not assume previous course work in the area, unless prerequisites are noted in the description. The size of some lectures is limited. Senior majors have preference unless otherwise noted, followed by junior majors, followed by senior and junior non-majors. Students are responsible for checking for any special registration procedures on-line at http://english.columbia.edu/courses.

Seminars

The department regards seminars as opportunities for students to do advanced undergraduate work in fields in which they have already had some related course experience. With the exception of some CLEN classes (in which, as comparative courses, much material is read in translation), students’ admission to a seminar presupposes their having taken ENGL UN3001 Literary Texts, Critical Methods. During the three weeks preceding the registration period, students should check http://english.columbia.edu/courses for application instructions for individual seminars. Applications to seminars are usually due by the end of the week preceding registration. Students should always assume that the instructor’s permission is necessary; those who register without having secured the instructor’s permission are not guaranteed admission.

Departmental Honors

Writing a senior essay is a precondition, though not a guarantee, for the possible granting of departmental honors. After essays are submitted, faculty sponsors deliver a written report on the essay to the department’s Committee on Undergraduate Education (CUE), with a grade for the independent study and, if merited, a recommendation for honors. CUE considers all the essays, including sponsor recommendations, reviews students’ fall semester grades, and determines which students are to receive departmental honors. Normally no more than 10% of graduating majors receive departmental honors in a given academic year.

The Degree Audit Reporting System (DARS)

The DAR is a useful tool for students to monitor their progress toward degree requirements, but it is not an official document for the major or concentration, nor should it replace consultation with departmental advisers. The department’s director of undergraduate studies is the final authority on whether requirements for the major have been met. Furthermore, the DAR may be inaccurate or incomplete for any number of reasons—for example, courses taken elsewhere and approved for credit do not show up on the DAR report as fulfilling a specific requirement.

Online Information

Other departmental information—faculty office hours, registration instructions, late changes, etc.—is available on the departmental website.

Professors

  • James Eli Adams
  • Rachel Adams
  • Branka Arsic
  • Christopher Baswell (Barnard)
  • Sarah Cole
  • Julie Crawford
  • Nicholas Dames
  • Jenny Davidson
  • Andrew Delbanco
  • Kathy Eden
  • Brent Edwards
  • Stathis Gourgouris
  • Farah Jasmine Griffin
  • Jack Halberstam
  • Saidiya Hartman
  • Marianne Hirsch
  • Jean E. Howard
  • Sharon Marcus
  • Edward Mendelson
  • Frances Negrón-Muntaner
  • Robert O’Meally
  • Julie Peters
  • Ross Posnock
  • Austin E. Quigley
  • Bruce Robbins
  • James Shapiro
  • Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak (University Professor)
  • Alan Stewart
  • Colm Toibin
  • Gauri Viswanathan
  • William Worthen (Barnard)
  • David M. Yerkes

Associate Professors

  • Denise Cruz
  • Patricia Dailey
  • T. Austin Graham
  • Erik Gray
  • Matt Hart
  • Eleanor Johnson
  • Molly Murray
  • Joseph Slaughter
  • Dennis Tenen
  • Jennifer Wenzel

Assistant Professors

  • Joseph Alvarez
  • Lauren Robertson
  • Dustin Stewart
  • Hannah Weaver

Lecturers

  • Paul Grimstad
  • Sue Mendelsohn
  • Aaron Ritzenberg
  • Maura Speigel
  • Nicole B. Wallack

Guidelines for all English and Comparative Literature Majors and Concentrators

Declaring a Major in English

Upon declaring a major in English, students should meet with either the director of undergraduate studies or a departmental adviser to discuss the program. Students declaring a major should obtain a Major Requirements Worksheet from 602 Philosophy or on-line, which outlines the requirements.

Additional information, including events and deadlines of particular relevance to undergraduates, is provided at http://english.columbia.edu/undergraduate, the department’s undergraduate homepage. The sidebar on this page provides links to pages with details about undergraduate advising, major and concentration requirements, course options and restrictions, registration procedures, the senior essay, and writing prizes, as well as links to downloadable worksheets for the major and concentration and to course distribution requirement lists, past and present. For detailed information about registration procedures, students should consult http://english.columbia.edu/courses, which explains the requirements and enables students to monitor their own progress.

Newly declared majors should contact the undergraduate assistant in 602 Philosophy Hall and request that their names be added to the department’s electronic mailing list for English majors and concentrators. Because important information now routinely is disseminated through e-mail, it is crucial that students be on this list.

Literary Texts, Critical Methods

The introductory course ENGL UN3001 Literary Texts, Critical Methods, together with its companion seminar, ENGL UN3011 Literary Texts, Critical Methods seminar, is required for the English major and concentration. It should be taken by the end of the sophomore year. Fulfillment of this requirement is a factor in admission to seminars and to some lectures. This once-a-week faculty lecture, accompanied by a seminar led by an advanced graduate student in the department, is intended to introduce students to the study of literature. Students read works from the three major literary modes (lyric, drama, and narrative), drawn from premodern to contemporary literature, and learn interpretative techniques required by these various modes or genres. This course does not fulfill any distribution requirements.

Senior Essay

The senior essay program is an opportunity for students to explore in depth some literary topic of special interest to them, involving extensive background reading and resulting in an essay (8,000–15,000 words) that constitutes a substantial and original critical or scholarly argument. Students submit proposals in September of their senior year, with acceptance contingent upon the quality of the proposal and the student’s record in the major. Students who are accepted are assigned a faculty sponsor to supervise the project, from its development during the fall semester to its completion in the spring. It is for the spring semester, not the fall, that students officially register for the course, designated as ENGL UN3999 Senior Essay. Senior essays are due in early April.

Course Options and Restrictions

  1. No course at the 1000-level may be counted toward the major.

  2. Speech courses may not be counted toward the major.

  3. Two writing courses or two upper-level literature courses taught in a foreign language, or one of each, may count toward the major, though neither type of course fulfills any distribution requirement. Writing courses that may be applied toward the major include those offered through Columbia’s undergraduate Creative Writing Program and through Barnard College.

  4. Comparative literature courses sponsored by the department (designated as CLEN) may count toward the major. Those sponsored by other departments (e.g. CLFR - Comp Lit French, CPLS - Comp Lit and Society) are not counted toward the major without permission of the director of undergraduate studies. Literature courses taught in English in language departments do not count toward the major.

  5. No more than two courses taken during the summer session may be counted toward the major.

  6. Courses offered through the Barnard English Department may count toward the major or concentration. Before taking Barnard courses, students should verify with the director of undergraduate studies whether and how such courses may count toward the major.

  7. For courses taken abroad or at other American institutions to count toward the major, students must obtain approval of the director of undergraduate studies.

  8. To register for more than 42 points (including advanced standing credit) in English and comparative literature, a student majoring in English must obtain permission of the director of undergraduate studies.

  9. No more than five courses taken elsewhere may be applied to the major, four to the concentration.

  10. One independent study (for at least 3 points) may count toward the major but cannot satisfy any distribution requirements; likewise, the Senior Essay may count toward the major but fulfills no requirements. Students may not count both an Independent Study and the Senior Essay toward the major.

  11. Courses assigned a grade of D may not be counted toward the major.

  12. Only the first course taken to count toward the major can be taken Pass/D/Fail.


Major in English

Please read Guidelines for all English and Comparative Literature Majors and Concentrators above.

Ten departmental courses (for a minimum of 30 points) and, in the process, fulfillment of the following requirements. See course information above for details on fulfilling the distribution requirements.

  1. ENGL UN3001 Literary Texts, Critical Methods and ENGL UN3011 Literary Texts, Critical Methods seminar
  2. Period distribution: Three courses primarily dealing with periods before 1800, only one of which may be a course in Shakespeare
  3. Genre distribution: One course in each of the following three generic categories:
    • Poetry
    • Prose fiction/narrative
    • Drama/film/new media
  4. Geography distribution: One course in each of the following three geographical categories:
    • British
    • American
    • Comparative/global (comparative literature, postcolonial, global English, trans-Atlantic, diaspora)

Course Distribution Lists are available in the department and on-line at http://english.columbia.edu/course-distribution-lists to help students determine which courses fulfill which requirements. A single course can satisfy more than one distribution requirement. For example, a Shakespeare lecture satisfies three requirements at once: not only does it count as one of the three required pre-1800 courses it also, at the same time, fulfills both a genre and a geography distribution requirement (drama and British, respectively). Courses not on the distribution list may count toward the major requirements only with the permission of the director of undergraduate studies. Two writing courses or upper-level literature courses taught in a foreign language, or one of each, may count toward the ten required courses.


Concentration in English

Please read Guidelines for all English and Comparative Literature Majors and Concentrators above.

Eight departmental courses and, in the process, fulfillment of the following requirements. See course information above for details on fulfilling the distribution requirements.

  1. ENGL UN3001 Literary Texts, Critical Methods and ENGL UN3011 Literary Texts, Critical Methods seminar
  2. Period distribution: Two courses dealing with periods before 1800, only one of which may be a course in Shakespeare
  3. Genre distribution: Two courses, each chosen from a different genre category (see above)
  4. Geography distribution: Two courses, each chosen from a different geography category (see above)

See the Course Distribution Lists, available in the department or on-line at http://english.columbia.edu/course-distribution-lists, to determine which courses fulfill which requirements. All of the restrictions outlined for the English major also apply for the concentration in English.


Comparative Literature Program

Students who wish to major in comparative literature should consult the Comparative Literature and Society section of this Bulletin.

Fall 2022

Introduction to the Major

ENGL UN3001 Literary Texts, Critical Methods. 4 points.

Prerequisites: Students who register for ENGL UN3001 must also register for one of the sections of ENGL UN3011 Literary Texts, Critical Methods.

This course is intended to introduce students to the advanced study of literature. Students will read works from different genres (poetry, drama, and prose fiction), drawn from the medieval period to the present day, learning the different interpretative techniques required by each. The course also introduces students to a variety of critical schools and approaches, with the aim both of familiarizing them with these methodologies in the work of other critics and of encouraging them to make use of different methods in their own critical writing. This course (together with the companion seminar ENGL UN3011) is a requirement for the English Major and Concentration. It should be taken as early as possible in a student's career. Fulfillment of this requirement will be a factor in admission to seminars and to some lectures.

Spring 2022: ENGL UN3001
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ENGL 3001 001/10726 F 10:00am - 11:25am
517 Hamilton Hall
Erik Gray 4 69/80
Fall 2022: ENGL UN3001
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ENGL 3001 001/12953 F 10:10am - 11:25am
313 Fayerweather
Erik Gray 4 75/75

ENGL UN3011 Literary Texts, Critical Methods seminar. 0 points.

Prerequisites: Students who register for ENGL UN3011 must also register for ENGL UN3001 Literary Texts, Critical Methods lecture.

This seminar, led by an advanced graduate student in the English doctoral program, accompanies the faculty lecture ENGL UN3001. The seminar both elaborates upon the topics taken up in the lecture and introduces other theories and methodologies. It also focuses on training students to integrate the terms, techniques, and critical approaches covered in both parts of the course into their own critical writing, building up from brief close readings to longer research papers.

Spring 2022: ENGL UN3011
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ENGL 3011 001/10727 M 12:10pm - 2:00pm
601b Fairchild Life Sciences Bldg
Lilith Todd 0 11/15
ENGL 3011 002/10728 M 12:10pm - 2:00pm
302 Fayerweather
Emma Hitchcock 0 14/15
ENGL 3011 003/10729 M 12:10pm - 2:00pm
301m Fayerweather
Benjamin Hulett 0 12/15
ENGL 3011 004/10730 M 12:10pm - 2:00pm
509 Hamilton Hall
Patrick Anson 0 16/17
ENGL 3011 005/10731 T 2:10pm - 4:00pm
507 Hamilton Hall
Bernadette Myers 0 16/17
Fall 2022: ENGL UN3011
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ENGL 3011 001/14863 M 12:10pm - 2:00pm
511 Kent Hall
Geoffrey Lokke 0 15/15
ENGL 3011 002/14865 M 12:10pm - 2:00pm
302 Fayerweather
Kaagni Harekal 0 12/15
ENGL 3011 003/14866 M 12:10pm - 2:00pm
607 Hamilton Hall
Tyler Grand Pre 0 11/15
ENGL 3011 004/14868 M 6:10pm - 8:00pm
652 Schermerhorn Hall
Johannah King-Slutzky 0 13/15
ENGL 3011 005/14870 M 6:10pm - 8:00pm
502 Northwest Corner
Mieko Anders 0 15/15

Medieval

ENGL UN3943 ENGLISH TRANSLATIONS OF THE BIBLE. 4.00 points.

English translations of the Bible from Tyndale to the present

Fall 2022: ENGL UN3943
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ENGL 3943 001/10238 T 2:10pm - 4:00pm
337 Seeley W. Mudd Building
David Yerkes 4.00 17/18

ENGL UN3564 It’s All Rotten: A Seminar on Pleasure. 4.00 points.

This seminar is inspired by a passage from Clarice Lispector’s last novel, Breath of Life: “It’s all rotten. I feel it in the air and in the people frightened and starving huddled in a crowd. But I believe that in the depths of rottenness there exists—green sparkling redeeming and promised-land—in the depths of the dark rottenness there shines clear and captivating the Great Emerald. The Great Pleasure. But why this desire and hunger for pleasure? Because pleasure is the height of the truthfulness of a being. It’s the only struggle against death.” The plan is to study the nature of pleasure and its representations across a series of ancient, medieval, and modern texts, keeping an eye on this insight, namely, that our belief in pleasure is found, not unlike the beauty of a still life whose objects have long decayed, in the midst of our sense of the rottenness of things, their decomposing, fermenting, and sometimes disgusting ephemeral nature. Filling our conceptual picnic basket with some ancient theories of pleasure, we will wander among medieval and Renaissance gardens in order to arrive upon the Romantic and decadent shores of modernity with a fresh sense of pleasure’s truth and taste for its question

Fall 2022: ENGL UN3564
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ENGL 3564 001/18304 W 4:10pm - 6:00pm
201a Philosophy Hall
Nicola Mascandiaro 4.00 18/18

ENGL GU4091 Introduction to Old English Language & Literature. 3 points.

(Lecture). This class is an introduction to the language and literature of England from around the 8th to the 11th centuries. Because this is predominantly a language class, we will spend much of our class time studying grammar as we learn to translate literary and non-literary texts. While this course provides a general historical framework for the period as it introduces you to the culture of Anglo-Saxon England, it will also take a close look at how each literary work contextualizes (or recontextualizes) relationships between human and divine, body and soul, individual and group, animal and human. We will be using Mitchell and Robinson's An Introduction to Old English, along with other supplements. We will be looking at recent scholarly work in the field and looking at different ways (theoretical, and other) of reading these medieval texts. Requirements: Students will be expected to do assignments for each meeting. The course will involve a mid-term, a final exam, and a final presentation on a Riddle which will also be turned in.

Fall 2022: ENGL GU4091
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ENGL 4091 001/10100 M W 11:40am - 12:55pm
503 Hamilton Hall
Patricia Dailey 3 17/54

ENGL GU4239 TROILUS & CRISEYDE AND ITS NEIGHBORS. 3.00 points.

The central task of this lecture will be a slow and attentive reading of Chaucer’s great romance Troilus and Criseyde, across the entire semester. Each week, in addition, we will read and discuss a wide range of related materials, to include: theoretical strategies (especially the post-Lacanian notion of the neighbor), iconography and manuscript setting, genre affiliations (romance, epic, historiography, philosophy), the broader Trojan narrative tradition, the medieval city, the medieval imagination of the antique past, earlier and later texts in dialogue with Troilus (Boethius, Ovid, Statius’ Thebaid, Lydgate’s Troy Book and Henryson’s Testament of Cresseid, Spenser and Shakespeare), Troilus and Chaucer’s own textual past and future. At the same time, the lecture will explore what recent theoretical statements about the neighbor and hospitality can bring to our reading of Troilus, both in terms of its place in a broad textual tradition, and in terms of its plot, urban setting, and thematics of intimacy. Readings will draw from Derrida, Kenneth Reinhard, Slavoj Zizek, and others. Toward this end, each student will select a “neighborly” text, from any period, to read with and against Troilus. While the course will be relevant to medievalists, it is consciously designed equally to serve (and it is hoped, to attract) students from very different periods. Non-medievalists will be encouraged to draw upon their expertises, both in period and theoretical methodology)

Fall 2022: ENGL GU4239
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ENGL 4239 001/15967 M W 2:40pm - 3:55pm
805 Altschul Hall
Christopher Baswell 3.00 2/30

Renaissance

ENGL UN3335 Shakespeare I. 3 points.

Enrollment is limited to 60.

(Lecture). This course will cover the histories, comedies, tragedies, and poetry of Shakespeare’s early career. We will examine the cultural and historical conditions that informed Shakespeare’s drama and poetry; in the case of drama, we will also consider the formal constraints and opportunities of the early modern English commercial theater. We will attend to Shakespeare’s biography while considering his work in relation to that of his contemporaries. Ultimately, we will aim to situate the production of Shakespeare’s early career within the highly collaborative, competitive, and experimental theatrical and literary cultures of late sixteenth-century England.

Fall 2022: ENGL UN3335
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ENGL 3335 001/10099 M W 10:10am - 11:25am
503 Hamilton Hall
James Shapiro 3 54/54

ENGL UN3343 The Surveillance of Women in Renaissance Drama & Culture. 4 points.

Concentrating on the drama of early modern England, this course will investigate a culture of surveillance regarding women’s bodies in the period. We will give special focus to the fear of female infidelity, the theatrical fascination with the woman’s pregnant body, and the cultural desire to confirm and expose women’s chastity. We will read plays in which women are falsely accused of adultery, in various generic contexts (such as William Shakespeare’s 


Cymbeline and Much Ado About Nothing), along with plays in which women actually commit infidelity (such as the anonymous Arden of Faversham and Thomas Middleton’s A Chaste Maid in Cheapside). Focusing on a different play each week, we will ask: what does it take, ultimately, to believe women about their fidelity? At the same time, what is the effect of being doubted on women themselves? We will also give consideration to the particular resources of dramatic form, paying attention to moments in plays that coerce spectators themselves into mistaken judgments about women.


We will supplement our reading of drama with pamphlets, advice literature, poems, church court cases, and ballads, in order to place these plays within a broader and more varied culture of female surveillance in early modern England. Finally, we will work to recover past strategies of liberation from this surveillance in the plays we read, in women’s writing that warns against male betrayal, and in dramatic and historical instances of female cross-dressing.

Fall 2022: ENGL UN3343
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ENGL 3343 001/10101 M 12:10pm - 2:00pm
507 Philosophy Hall
Lauren Robertson 4 18/18

ENGL GU4933 SPENSER. 3.00 points.

This course centers on the writing of Edmund Spenser, early modern England’s self-styled national poet. We will devote much of our attention to The Faerie Queene; a complex, strange, profound, and often funny poem that entwines romance and epic, it is Spenser’s major poetic achievement. Characterized by turns as Elizabethan propaganda (Karl Marx called Spenser “Elizabeth’s arse-kissing poet”) and a studied critique of Tudor political mythology, The Faerie Queene’s allegory is everywhere engaged with the challenges, dangers, and delights of reading itself. As part of our assessment of Spenser’s poetry, we will confront his role as secretary to Lord Arthur Grey during England’s brutal colonization of Ireland. Taking Spenser’s poetic and political careers together, this course will uncover the deeply contradictory aims of writing in the early modern humanist tradition, which questioned traditional class hierarchies and imagined new ways of fashioning the self at the same time that it helped to sanction England’s burgeoning imperial ambitions

Fall 2022: ENGL GU4933
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ENGL 4933 001/12557 M W 2:40pm - 3:55pm
503 Hamilton Hall
Lauren Robertson 3.00 22/54

18th and 19th Century

CLRS GU4011 Dostoevsky, Tolstoy, and the English Novel [in English]. 3 points.

A close reading of works by Dostoevsky (Netochka Nezvanova; The Idiot; "A Gentle Creature") and Tolstoy (Childhood, Boyhood, Youth; "Family Happiness"; Anna Karenina; "The Kreutzer Sonata") in conjunction with related English novels (Bronte's Jane Eyre, Eliot's Middlemarch, Woolf's Mrs. Dalloway). No knowledge of Russian is required.

Fall 2022: CLRS GU4011
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
CLRS 4011 001/10580 M W 10:10am - 11:25am
516 Hamilton Hall
Liza Knapp 3 41/50
CLRS 4011 AU1/16763 M W 10:10am - 11:25am
516 Hamilton Hall
Liza Knapp 3 0/2

ENGL UN3893 Rivers, Oceans, Seas: Water in Early and Pre-1865 American Literature. 4.00 points.

This course explores the trope, motif, theme, and concept of water antebellum American literature. From Columbus’s “discovery” of the “New” world to the Puritans’ transatlantic pursuit of religious and political freedom; from the Middle Passage which brought slaves to the Americas to erect what soon became the United States, to Lewis and Clarke’s expansive exploration of the country on the Mississippi River—the liquid element plays a decisive role, historical as well as artistic, factual as well as fictional, in the way Americans represented themselves (and others) to themselves. In this class we will explore how and why, to what aesthetic or political end, early and pre-Civil War American literature employed different bodies of water—rivers and oceans—that eventually led to the modernist invention of the stream of consciousness as it was championed, in psychology and literature respectively, by the James brothers. We will investigate water’s literal presence in the writings of Bradford, Equiano, and Thoreau; its deployment as a symbol and allegory in Whitman, Dunbar, Sansay and Stowe; or its articulation as a psychological notion in Brockden Brown; as a philosophical concept in Melville and Poe; and as a generic device in Emerson and Dickinson. Our central task will be to explore the effects that aquatic environments and marine ecosystems have on human bodies and minds. How do they enhance and in what way do they dissolve our "mainland" conceptions of personhood, identity, memory, and/or history? How does the difference between water and land, liquid and firm environs shape the way we comprehend the world and our place in it

Fall 2022: ENGL UN3893
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ENGL 3893 001/18303 M 2:10pm - 4:00pm
317 Hamilton Hall
Vesna Kuiken 4.00 17/18

ENGL GU4402 Romantic Poetry. 3 points.

Open to all undergraduates and graduate students.

(Lecture). This course examines major British poets of the period 1789-1830. We will be focusing especially on the poetry and poetic theory of William Blake, William Wordsworth, Samuel Taylor Coleridge, Lord Byron, Percy Shelley, and John Keats. We will also be reading essays, reviews, and journal entries by such figures as Robert Southey, William Hazlitt, and Dorothy Wordsworth.

Fall 2022: ENGL GU4402
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ENGL 4402 001/10239 T Th 10:10am - 11:25am
Aud Earl Hall
Erik Gray 3 60/60

ENGL GU4732 PLACES FOR POETRY. 4.00 points.

This seminar asks how poetry claims places. The poets come mostly from Britain or its former colonies. The poems range from the seventeenth century all the way to the present day, with the majority (around 60­–65% of the schedule) drawn from the long eighteenth century. In that period, an age of increased urbanization inside Britain’s borders and increased mobility around its expanding empire, the main distinction that organized cultural conversations about place was the divide between the town and the country. But poems about the virtues of rural life often spoke from a distressed urban perspective, and poems about the dynamism of the city frequently described it from the viewpoint of an outsider or newcomer. What the eighteenth century can teach us about the poetry of place, then, is that it might secretly be poetry of movement, poetry about how one seemingly stable location (or type of location) might pick up and go somewhere else. Building on this basic insight, we will wrestle with larger questions about how shareable the poetry of place can be. Does staying faithful to a single place—its grainy specificity, its deep history, its rich tradition—risk making a poem unintelligible elsewhere? To what extent does a place-based poem need to shed its local attachments and try to speak a more universal language? How can a poem communicate its rootedness with people who don’t have roots in the same spot? When is a poem an extension of place, and when is it an escape from it? Instead of proceeding chronologically, our seminar will largely be arranged by settings that various English, Scottish, Irish, Caribbean, Indian, and American poets have sought to evoke. For the first ten weeks of the term, we will move from one type of place to another: from country houses to city streets, battlefields to bridges, churchyards to shipyards, walking paths to railway stations, outer islands to outer space. For the final few weeks, we will shift our arrangement and sample several major poets of place—one or two from the eighteenth century, one or two from the following centuries. Your final project for the class will imaginatively map the poetry of one of the places that you claim or that claims you

Fall 2022: ENGL GU4732
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ENGL 4732 001/12556 T 2:10pm - 4:00pm
303 Hamilton Hall
Dustin Stewart 4.00 15/14

20th and 21st Century

ENGL UN3351 FAMILY FICTIONS: MEMOIR, FILM AND THE NOVEL. 4.00 points.

This course will explore cinematic, novelistic and memoirist renderings of “family cultures,” family feeling, the family as narrative configuration, and home as a utopian/dystopian and oneiric space. Explorations of memory, imagination and childhood make-believe will interface with readings in psychoanalysis and in the social history of this polymorphous institution. A central goal of the course is to help each of you toward written work that is distinguished, vital and has urgency for you. Authors will include Gaston Bachelard, Alison Bechdel, Jessica Benjamin, Sarah M. Broom, Lucille Clifton, Vivian Gornick, Lorraine Hansberry, Maggie Nelson and D.W. Winnicott; and films by Sean Baker, Ingmar Bergman, Alfonso Cuaron, Greta Gerwig, Lance Hammer, Barry Jenkins, Elia Kazan, Lucretia Martel, Andrei Zvyagintsev and others

Fall 2022: ENGL UN3351
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ENGL 3351 001/12544 W 12:10pm - 2:00pm
522c Kent Hall
Maura Spiegel 4.00 16/18

ENGL UN3567 August Wilson’s America. 4.00 points.

From 1983 until his death in 2005, August Wilson wrote and produced the American Century Cycle: ten plays, each set in a different decade of the twentieth century, examining the past and present of Black life in America. Since 2005, and especially with the development of the Black Lives Matter movement, attention on conditions of American Black life—its challenges, joys, struggles, tragedies, triumphs, and journeys—has increased and deepened. We will read the entirety of Wilson’s Cycle (plus the autobiographical coda) with the goals, first, of unpacking and understanding his characterizations and critique of Black life and America and, second, of examining how well those characterizations and critiques extend beyond Wilson’s death into our own time

Fall 2022: ENGL UN3567
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ENGL 3567 001/18306 T 12:10pm - 2:00pm
201 80 Claremont
Patrick Maley 4.00 4/18

ENGL UN3633 Literature and American Citizenship. 4 points.

Prerequisites: Permission of instructor.

(Seminar). Who is a citizen? How has the notion of citizenship changed in American history? Questions of American citizenship - who can claim it and what it entails -- have been fiercely contested since the founding of the United States. Scholars have articulated various ways of conceptualizing citizenship: as a formal legal status; as a collection of state-protected rights; as political activity; and as a form of identity and solidarity. In this seminar, we'll explore the role that literature and literary criticism have played in both shaping and responding to the narratives and civic myths that determine what it means to be an American citizen.

Fall 2022: ENGL UN3633
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ENGL 3633 001/10241 M 12:10pm - 2:00pm
311 Fayerweather
Aaron Ritzenberg 4 11/18

ENGL UN3636 COLLECTIONS: CONTEMPORARY AMERICAN SHORT STORIES. 4 points.

In this course, we will examine short stories as a particularly American form. The short story has been notoriously difficult to define, but one key characteristic of the genre is its presumed compact form alongside its compelling expansiveness. Short stories constantly toggle back and forth between the compressed and the broad. In the United States, the genre of short story has a long history of articulating and imagining an individual or community’s changing and fraught relationship to transnational, national, and local dynamics (represented, for example, nineteenth and early twentieth-century authors such as Edgar Allan Poe, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Mary Wilkins Freeman, Sui Sin Far, Washington Irving, Charles Chestnutt, Mark Twain, Sarah Orne Jewett, Tillie Olsen, José García Villa, and Carlos Bulosan). Today, this catalog of writers can be matched with another list of contemporary North American short story authors featured on our syllabus: Jhumpa Lahiri, Chimamanda Adichie, Daniel Alarcón, Mohsin Hamid, George Saunders, Ted Chiang, Mona Award, Lydia Davis, Vanessa Hua, R. Zamora Linmark, Otesha Moshfegh, and Leanne Simpson. Some of the writers on this list are veterans of the short story form. Others are authors who recently published debut collections. As we work through our reading list, we will attempt to analyze not only individual short stories, but also what marks these books as collections. What might hold these texts together? What disrupts the unifying principles of a collection? And most importantly, what do short stories offer—in terms of representations of American life and culture and its complexity—that other forms do not?

Spring 2022: ENGL UN3636
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ENGL 3636 001/10741 W 10:10am - 12:00pm
401 Hamilton Hall
Denise Cruz 4 16/16
Fall 2022: ENGL UN3636
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ENGL 3636 001/10242 T 12:10pm - 2:00pm
707 Hamilton Hall
Denise Cruz 4 14/18

ENGL UN3648 Comics, Health, and Embodiment. 4 points.

Deformed, grotesque, super/transhuman and otherwise extraordinary bodies have always been a central feature of comics. However, the past ten years have seen a surge of graphic narratives that deal directly with experiences of health and illness, and that are recognized as having significant literary value. This course will focus on graphic narratives about healthcare, illness, and disability with particular attention to questions of embodied identities such as gender, sexuality, race, and age. Primary texts will include the work of Alison Bechdel, Roz Chast, CeCe Bell, David Small, Allie Brosch, and Ellen Fourney. We will study the vocabulary, conventions, and formal properties of graphic literature, asking how images and text work together to create narrative. We will consider whether graphic narrative might be especially well suited to representations of bodily difference; how illness/disability can disrupt conventional ideas about gender and sexuality; how experiences of the body as a source of pain, stigmatization, and shame intersect with the sexualized body; and how illness and disability queer conventional sexual arrangements, identities, and attachments. While studying the construction of character, narrative, framing, color, and relationship between visual and print material on the page, students will also produce their own graphic narratives.

Fall 2022: ENGL UN3648
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ENGL 3648 001/10243 W 2:10pm - 4:00pm
401 Hamilton Hall
Rachel Adams 4 18/18

ENGL UN3712 Henry James & Edith Wharton. 4 points.

James & Wharton, America's two greatest novelists in the half century after the civil war and the eve of the first world war, were friends and fellow cosmopolitans, at home in the US  & Europe, chroniclers of an emerging transatlantic urban modernity traversing New York, London, Paris, Rome, Geneva. Their fiction often portrays glamorous surfaces and intricate social texts that their brilliant heroines --Isabel Archer  of The Portrait of a Lady & Lily Bart of The House of Mirth,  for example--negotiate with wit and subtlety, confusion and daring,  amidst fear and fascination. They find themselves immersed in bruising plots--crafted by society's disciplinary imperatives and by their creators, the latter standing in uneasy complicity with the social order even as they seek its transformation.  Giving female protagonists unprecedented boldness and ambition, Wharton & James chart how intense exertion of will and desire collides with "the customs of the country," to cite the title of a great Wharton novel. We will read the three novels mentioned above as well as Wharton's Summer & Ethan Frome and James's "Daisy Miller," Washington Square & The Ambassadors.

Fall 2022: ENGL UN3712
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ENGL 3712 001/10244 Th 12:10pm - 2:00pm
613 Hamilton Hall
Ross Posnock 4 19/18

ENGL UN3805 The Political Novel. 4.00 points.

Is the political novel a genre? It depends on your understanding both of politics and of the novel. If politics means parties, elections, and governing, then few novels of high quality would qualify. If on the other hand “the personal is the political,” as the slogan of the women’s movement has it, then almost everything the novel deals with is politics, and few novels would not qualify. This seminar will try to navigate between these extremes, focusing on novels that center on the question of how society is and ought to be constituted. Since this question is often posed ambitiously in so-called “genre fiction” like thrillers and sci-fi, which is not always honored as “literature,” it will include some examples of those genres as well as uncontroversial works of the highest literary value like Melville’s “Benito Cereno,” Ellison’s “Invisible Man,” and Camus’s “The Plague.”

Fall 2022: ENGL UN3805
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ENGL 3805 001/10245 M 4:10pm - 6:00pm
522c Kent Hall
Bruce Robbins, Orhan Pamuk 4.00 19/18

CLEN GU4199 Literature and Oil. 3 points.

This course will investigate the connections between literary/cultural production and petroleum as the substance that makes possible the world as we know it, both as an energy source and a component in the manufacture of everything from food to plastic. Our current awareness of oil's scarcity and its myriad costs (whether environmental, political, or social) provides a lens to read for the presence (or absence) of oil in texts in a variety of genres and national traditions. As we begin to imagine a world "beyond petroleum," this course will confront the ways in which oil shapes both the world we know and how we know and imagine the world. Oil will feature in this course in questions of theme (texts "about" oil), of literary form (are there common formal conventions of an "oil novel"?), of interpretive method (how to read for oil), of transnational circulation (how does "foreign oil" link US citizens to other spaces?), and of the materiality (or "oiliness") of literary culture (how does the production and circulation of texts, whether print or digital, rely on oil?). 

Fall 2022: CLEN GU4199
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
CLEN 4199 001/10246 M W 2:40pm - 3:55pm
310 Fayerweather
Jennifer Wenzel 3 90/90

CLEN GU4550 Narrative and Human Rights. 3 points.

(Lecture). We can't talk about human rights without talking about the forms in which we talk about human rights. This course will study the convergences of the thematics, philosophies, politics, practices, and formal properties of literature and human rights. In particular, it will examine how literary questions of narrative shape (and are shaped by) human rights concerns; how do the forms of stories enable and respond to forms of thought, forms of commitment, forms of being, forms of justice, and forms of violation? How does narrative help us to imagine an international order based on human dignity, rights, and equality? We will read classic literary texts and contemporary writing (both literary and non-literary) and view a number of films and other multimedia projects to think about the relationships between story forms and human rights problematics and practices. Likely literary authors: Roberto Bolaño, Miguel de Cervantes, Assia Djebar, Ariel Dorfman, Slavenka Drakulic, Nuruddin Farah, Janette Turner Hospital, Franz Kafka, Sahar Kalifeh, Sindiwe Magona, Maniza Naqvi, Michael Ondaatje, Alicia Partnoy, Ousmane Sembène, Mark Twain . . . . We will also read theoretical and historical pieces by authors such as Agamben, An-Na'im, Appiah, Arendt, Balibar, Bloch, Chakrabarty, Derrida, Douzinas, Habermas, Harlow, Ignatieff, Laclau and Mouffe, Levinas, Lyotard, Marx, Mutua, Nussbaum, Rorty, Said, Scarry, Soyinka, Spivak, Williams.

Fall 2022: CLEN GU4550
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
CLEN 4550 001/10247 M W 5:40pm - 6:55pm
310 Fayerweather
Joseph R Slaughter 3 78/90

ENGL GU4604 American Modernism. 3 points.

(Lecture). This course surveys cultural responses to the historical, technological, intellectual, and political conditions of modernity in the United States. Spanning the period from the turn of the century to the onset of World War II, we will consider the relationship between key events (U.S. imperialism, immigration, World War I, the Jazz age, the Great Depression); intellectual and scientific developments (the theory of relativity, the popularization of Freudian psychoanalysis, the anthropological concept of culture, the spread of consumer culture, Fordism, the automobile, the birth of cinema, the skyscraper); and cultural production. Assigned readings will include novels, short stories, and contemporary essays. Visual culture--paintings, illustrations, photography, and film--will also play an important role in our investigation of the period. Past syllabus (which will be somewhat revised).

Fall 2022: ENGL GU4604
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ENGL 4604 001/10248 T Th 4:10pm - 5:25pm
310 Fayerweather
Ross Posnock 3 40/40

CLEN GU4771 The Literary History of Atrocity. 3 points.

Sometime around the publication of Garcia Marquez’s classic novel One Hundred Years of Solitude in 1967, novelists who wanted to make a claim to ethical and historical seriousness began to include a scene of extreme violence that, like the banana worker massacre in Garcia Marquez, seemed to offer a definitive guide to the moral landscape of the modern world. This course will explore both the modern literature that was inspired by Garcia Marquez’s example and the literature that led up to this extraordinary moment—for example, the literature dealing with the Holocaust, with the dropping of the atomic bomb, with the Japanese invasion of China in the 1930s, and with the Allied bombing of the German cities. It will also ask how extraordinary this moment in fact was, looked at from the perspective of literature as a whole, by inspecting earlier examples of atrocities committed in classical antiquity, in the Crusades, against Native Americans and (in Tolstoy) against the indigenous inhabitants of the Caucasus. Before the concept of the non-combatant had been defined, could there be a concept of the atrocity? Could a culture accuse itself of misconduct toward the members of some other culture? In posing these and related questions, the course offers itself as a major but untold chapter both in world literature and in the moral history of humankind.

Fall 2022: CLEN GU4771
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
CLEN 4771 001/12956 M W 11:40am - 12:55pm
310 Fayerweather
Bruce Robbins 3 58/60

Special Topics

ENTA UN3701 Drama, Theatre, Theory. 4 points.

Prerequisites: Instructor's permission.

(Seminar). Theatre typically exceeds the claims of theory. What does this tell us about both theatre and theory? We will consider why theatre practitioners often provide the most influential theoretical perspectives, how the drama inquires into (among other things) the possibilities of theatre, and the various ways in which the social, spiritual, performative, political, and aesthetic elements of drama and theatre interact. Two papers, weekly responses, and a class presentation are required. Readings include Aristotle, Artaud, Bharata, Boal, Brecht, Brook, Castelvetro, Craig, Genet, Grotowski, Ibsen, Littlewood, Marlowe, Parks, Schechner, Shakespeare, Sowerby, Weiss, and Zeami. Application Instructions: E-mail Professor Austin Quigley (aeq1@columbia.edu) with the subject heading "Drama, Theatre, Theory seminar." In your message, include basic information: your name, school, major, year of study, and relevant courses taken, along with a brief statement about why you are interested in taking the course. Admitted students should register for the course; they will automatically be placed on a wait list, from which the instructor will in due course admit them as spaces become available.

Fall 2022: ENTA UN3701
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ENTA 3701 001/12958 W 4:10pm - 6:00pm
301m Fayerweather
Austin Quigley 4 9/18

ENGL UN3792 FILM AND LAW. 4.00 points.

Prerequisites: the instructor's permission.

From its beginnings, film has been preoccupied with law: in cops and robbers silent films, courtroom drama, police procedural, judge reality show, or all the scenes that fill our media-saturated world. What do films and other audio-visual media tell us about what it’s like to come before the law, or about such substantive issues as what counts as murder, war crimes, torture, sexual abuse? How do films model the techniques that lawyers use to sway the passions of their audiences? How do they model the symbolism of their gestures, icons, images? If films and other audio-visual media rewrite legal events, what is their effect: on law? on legal audiences? How is the experience of being a film spectator both like and unlike the experience of being a legal subject? This course investigates such questions by looking at representations of law in film and other audio-visual media. We will seek to understand, first, how film represents law, and, second,how film attempts to shape law (influencing legal norms, intervening in legal regimes). The seminar’s principal texts will be the films themselves, but we will also read relevant legal cases and film theory in order to deepen our understanding of both legal and film regimes.

Fall 2022: ENGL UN3792
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ENGL 3792 001/12959 W 6:10pm - 8:00pm
401 Hamilton Hall
Julie Peters 4.00 15/18

ENGL UN3798 ASPECTS OF THE NOVEL. 4.00 points.

The novel is the dominant literary form of the last three centuries; its variations are numberless, its spread global. What can be said then about what a novel is, or how a novel works? What are some of the ways the form of the novel has been understood? This seminar is an introduction to the study of the novel as a formal and cultural phenomenon, taking in examples from the eighteenth century to the twenty-first, while attending to major landmarks in the “theory of the novel.”

Fall 2022: ENGL UN3798
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ENGL 3798 001/12547 T 4:10pm - 6:00pm
652 Schermerhorn Hall
Nicholas Dames 4.00 15/15

ENGL UN3891 INTRO TO CLASSICAL RHETORIC. 4.00 points.

Prerequisites: the instructor's permission.
Prerequisites: the instructor's permission. (Seminar). This course examines rhetorical theory from its roots in ancient Greece and Rome and reanimates the great debates about language that emerged in times of national expansion and cultural upheaval. We will situate the texts of Plato, Isocrates, Aristotle, Cicero, Quintilian, and others in their historical contexts to illuminate ongoing conversations about the role of words and images in the negotiation of persuasion, meaning making, and the formation of the public. In the process, we will discover that the arguments of classical rhetoric play out all around us today. Readings from thinkers like Judith Butler, Richard McKeon, Robert Pirsig, and Bruno Latour echo the ancients in their debates about hate speech regulation, the purpose of higher education, and the ability of the sciences to arrive at truth. We will discover that rhetoricians who are writing during eras of unprecedented expansion of democracies, colonization, and empire have a great deal to say about the workings of language in our globalizing, digitizing age. Application instructions: E-mail Professor Sue Mendelsohn (sem2181@columbia.edu) by April 11 with the subject heading Rhetoric seminar. In your message, include basic information: your name, school, major, year of study, and relevant courses taken, along with a brief statement about why you are interested in taking the course. Admitted students should register for the course; they will automatically be placed on a wait list, from which the instructor will in due course admit them as spaces become available

Fall 2022: ENGL UN3891
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ENGL 3891 001/10237 T 8:10am - 10:00am
401 Hamilton Hall
Susan Mendelsohn 4.00 14/18

AMST UN3930 Topics in American Studies. 4 points.

Please refer to the Center for American Studies website for course descriptions for each section. americanstudies.columbia.edu

Fall 2022: AMST UN3930
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
AMST 3930 001/10028 T 2:10pm - 4:00pm
317 Hamilton Hall
Hilary-Anne Hallett 4 14/18
AMST 3930 002/10029 T 10:10am - 12:00pm
317 Hamilton Hall
James Shapiro 4 9/18
AMST 3930 003/10030 W 12:10pm - 2:00pm
317 Hamilton Hall
John McWhorter 4 0/18
AMST 3930 004/11089 W 10:10am - 12:00pm
317 Hamilton Hall
Roosevelt Montas 4 16/18
AMST 3930 005/12000 F 10:10am - 12:00pm
317 Hamilton Hall
Michael Hindus 4 0/18

ENGL GU4879 QUEER LITERATURE, CULTURE AND THEORY. 3.00 points.

This class will ask you to read a set of novels, theoretical essays and engage works from queer cinema, TV and music, in order to think deeply about sexuality, identity, desire, race, objects, relationality, being, knowing and becoming. We will consider sexuality, desire and gender not as a discrete set of bodily articulations, nor as natural expressions of coherent identities so much as part of the formulation of self that Avery Gordon names “complex personhood.” Beginning with a film from the UK that rereads queerness back through a history or labor and ending with a film made entirely on the iPhone and that stages queerness as part of an alternative articulation of Hollywood, we will explore new and old theories of queer desire. Through the readings, discussions, and assignments, you will develop critical analytical skills to consider social change movements with particular attention to how sex, gender, race, class, sexuality, sexual orientation, and other systems of power shape people’s everyday lives. We will trace the entanglements of narrativity and subjectivity, desire and language, difference and representation and we will explore queer theories of being, knowing and becoming

Fall 2022: ENGL GU4879
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ENGL 4879 001/15048 M W 2:40pm - 3:55pm
209 Havemeyer Hall
Jack Halberstam 3.00 58/90

ENGL GU4898 THE BILDUNGSROMAN: COMING OF AGE IN THE NOVEL. 3.00 points.

The bildungsroman is the modern, realist version of the hero’s quest. Instead of slaying dragons and weaving spells, the protagonist of the bildungsroman struggles with what it means to become an adult – or to refuse to. Also known as the novel of development or coming-of-age novel, the bildungsroman typically focuses on growth and development, the cultivation of the self, and the tensions between individual and society, idealism and realism, dreamy inertia and future-oriented action. The reading list spans coming-of-age novels from Germany, France, England, and the United States, from the 1790s through the 2010s. Lectures will focus on the novel as a literary form in dialogue with other literary works; with historical events; and with ideas drawn from philosophy, psychology, and sociology. The course will address questions that include: what is society, what is a self, and what is the shape of a human life? What fosters human development and what thwarts it? How do coming-of-age novels engage with social norms concerning love, work, personhood, and maturity? The earliest novels of development focused on the dilemmas faced by white, middle-class men; how have subsequent works represented the challenges that non-dominant subjects encounter? This is a 3-point lecture course. In accordance with university guidelines, you should expect to spend about six hours per week outside of class doing the course reading, which will consist entirely of novels and vary from ~150 to ~300 pages per week

Fall 2022: ENGL GU4898
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ENGL 4898 001/13589 T Th 6:10pm - 7:25pm
614 Schermerhorn Hall
Sharon Marcus 3.00 80/90

ENGL GU4975 PRISON LITERATURE. 4.00 points.

Prison literature—poems, plays, memoirs, novels, and songs written in prison or about prison—constitute a significant part of American literature. Prisons expose many of the systemic inequalities of American life, above all those based on racism and the enduring legacies of slavery. Using the tools of critical race theory, feminism, and class analysis, this course will explore the forms of cultural expression that have emerged in relationship to the American prison experience. Though the course will touch on the rise of convict leasing, chain gangs, and work farms as part of the penal system under Jim Crow, the main focus will be on developments in the U.S. prison system and in prison literature since the 1960s, roughly from the prison writing of George Jackson, Angela Davis, and Malcolm X to the outpouring of contemporary fiction and poetry about prison life by Jesmyn Ward, Colin Whitehead, Rachel Kushner, and Reginald Betts. This is the era of what Michelle Alexander has called “the new Jim Crow,” the rise of mass incarceration, the partial privatization of the penal system, and the growth of supermax facilities. Among the questions we will explore together are these: What tools and techniques do writers use to construct the prison experience? What are the affordances offered by various genres (drama, autobiography, poetry, the novel) for exploring the prison system and the systems of oppression that converge at that site? Does some literature of incarceration perpetuate damaging discourses about “felons,” or does it revise and complicate stereotypes and narratives about incarcerated individuals? How do narratives involving change, conversion, growing up, or being defeated operate in various genres of prison literature? What role do mourning, witnessing, testifying, and resistance play in such writing? What is the imagined audience of various genres of prison writing, that is, for whom is it written? What ethical and political demands does such writing make on us as readers, citizens, activists?

Fall 2022: ENGL GU4975
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ENGL 4975 001/12966 T 10:10am - 12:00pm
612 Philosophy Hall
Jean Howard 4.00 14/18

University Writing

ENGL CC1010 University Writing. 3 points.

ENGL CC/GS1010: University Writing (3 points) focuses on developing students’ reading, writing, and thinking, drawing from readings on a designated course theme that carry a broad appeal to people with diverse interests. No University Writing class presumes that students arrive with prior knowledge in the theme of the course. We are offering the following themes this year: UW: Contemporary Essays, CC/GS1010.001-.099 UW: Readings in American Studies, CC/GS1010.1xx UW: Readings in Gender and Sexuality, CC/GS1010.2xx UW: Readings in Film and Performing Arts, CC1010.3xx UW: Readings in Human Rights, CC/GS1010.4xx UW: Readings in Data and Society, CC/GS1010.5xx UW: Readings in Medical Humanities, CC/GS1010.6xx UW: Readings in Law & Justice, CC1010.7xx UW: Readings in Race and Ethnicity, CC/GS1010.8xx University Writing for International Students, CC/GS1010.9xx

,

For further details about these classes, please visit: http://www.college.columbia.edu/core/uwp

Spring 2022: ENGL CC1010
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ENGL 1010 001/15243 M W 8:40am - 9:55am
201d Philosophy Hall
Ali Yalgin 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 002/15255 M W 8:40am - 9:55am
408a Philosophy Hall
Erag Ramizi 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 004/15256 M W 10:10am - 11:25am
652 Schermerhorn Hall
Samuel Granoff 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 011/15257 M W 11:40am - 12:55pm
201d Philosophy Hall
Elena Dudum 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 015/15258 M W 1:10pm - 2:25pm
305 Uris Hall
Susan Mendelsohn 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 016/15259 M W 1:10pm - 2:25pm
408a Philosophy Hall
Mary Catherine Stoumbos 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 017/15260 M W 1:10pm - 2:25pm
606 Lewisohn Hall
M Constantine 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 021/15261 M W 2:40pm - 3:55pm
652 Schermerhorn Hall
Glenn Gordon 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 024/15262 M W 4:10pm - 5:25pm
408a Philosophy Hall
Joseph Romano 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 027/15273 M W 4:10pm - 5:25pm
652 Schermerhorn Hall
Victoria Rucinski 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 031/15264 M W 5:40pm - 6:55pm
201d Philosophy Hall
Justin Snider 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 043/15265 T Th 11:40am - 12:55pm
408a Philosophy Hall
Emily Suazo 3 13/14
ENGL 1010 046/15266 T Th 1:10pm - 2:25pm
201d Philosophy Hall
Conor Macvarish 3 12/14
ENGL 1010 047/15267 T Th 1:10pm - 2:25pm
502 Northwest Corner
Evelyn MacPherson 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 048/15268 T Th 1:10pm - 2:25pm
608 Lewisohn Hall
Megan Lonsinger 3 13/14
ENGL 1010 050/15252 T Th 2:40pm - 3:55pm
652 Schermerhorn Hall
Sophia Pedatella 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 053/15270 T Th 4:10pm - 5:25pm
201d Philosophy Hall
Abby Schroering 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 058/15254 T Th 5:40pm - 6:55pm
201d Philosophy Hall
Aseel Najib 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 118/15250 M W 1:10pm - 2:25pm
502 Northwest Corner
Elizabeth Walters 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 120/15275 M W 2:40pm - 3:55pm
507 Lewisohn Hall
Hannah Gold 3 13/14
ENGL 1010 130/15276 M W 5:40pm - 6:55pm
408a Philosophy Hall
Kirkwood Adams 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 136/15277 T Th 10:10am - 11:25am
652 Schermerhorn Hall
Christopher Hoogstraten 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 159/15283 T Th 5:40pm - 6:55pm
502 Northwest Corner
Job Miller 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 219/15278 M W 2:40pm - 3:55pm
408a Philosophy Hall
Elliott Eglash 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 245/15279 T Th 1:10pm - 2:25pm
201b Philosophy Hall
Andrea Jo 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 254/15280 T Th 4:10pm - 5:25pm
502 Northwest Corner
Annabelle Tseng 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 257/15281 T Th 4:10pm - 5:25pm
201b Philosophy Hall
Natalie Adler 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 260/16956 T Th 5:40pm - 6:55pm
307 Mathematics Building
Brianne Baker 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 322/15284 M W 2:40pm - 3:55pm
502 Northwest Corner
Geoffrey Lokke 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 325/15285 M W 4:10pm - 5:25pm
201b Philosophy Hall
Alice Clapie 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 342/15286 T Th 11:40am - 12:55pm
507 Lewisohn Hall
Fiona Gorry-Hines 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 349/15288 T Th 2:40pm - 3:55pm
201d Philosophy Hall
Eduardo Pavez Goye 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 410/15289 M W 11:40am - 12:55pm
408a Philosophy Hall
Eman Elhadad 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 423/15290 M W 2:40pm - 3:55pm
606 Lewisohn Hall
Kendall Collins 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 426/15291 M W 4:10pm - 5:25pm
502 Northwest Corner
Mieko Anders 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 429/15292 M W 5:40pm - 6:55pm
652 Schermerhorn Hall
Tyler Grand Pre 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 432/15293 T Th 8:40am - 9:55am
502 Northwest Corner
Yiran Wang 3 12/14
ENGL 1010 441/15295 T Th 11:40am - 12:55pm
201b Philosophy Hall
Aisha Carter 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 503/15296 M W 8:40am - 9:55am
502 Northwest Corner
Julia Ryan 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 506/15297 M W 10:10am - 11:25am
502 Northwest Corner
Ji Hyun Joo 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 509/15298 M W 11:40am - 12:55pm
307 Mathematics Building
Stephanie Philp 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 514/15300 M W 1:10pm - 2:25pm
201b Philosophy Hall
Craig Moreau 3 13/14
ENGL 1010 533/15301 T Th 8:40am - 9:55am
408a Philosophy Hall
Margaret Banks 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 551/15302 T Th 2:40pm - 3:55pm
502 Northwest Corner
Ruilin Fan 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 605/15303 M W 10:10am - 11:25am
201d Philosophy Hall
Ayesha Verma 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 628/15304 M W 5:40pm - 6:55pm
201b Philosophy Hall
Johannah King-Slutzky 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 635/15306 T Th 10:10am - 11:25am
502 Northwest Corner
Kristie Schlauraff 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 639/15307 T Th 11:40am - 12:55pm
502 Northwest Corner
Kristie Schlauraff 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 707/15308 M W 10:10am - 11:25am
201b Philosophy Hall
Aya Labanieh 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 708/15310 M W 11:40am - 12:55pm
652 Schermerhorn Hall
Valeria Tsygankova 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 738/15312 T Th 10:10am - 11:25am
141 Uris Hall
Craig Gurian 3 13/14
ENGL 1010 744/15314 T Th 1:10pm - 2:40pm
408a Philosophy Hall
Lindsay Stewart 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 752/15315 T Th 2:40pm - 3:55pm
408a Philosophy Hall
Pranav Menon 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 756/15316 T Th 4:10pm - 5:25pm
305 Uris Hall
Kaagni Harekal 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 812/15318 M W 11:40am - 12:55pm
320 River Side Church
Tejan Waszak 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 834/15319 T Th 8:40am - 9:55am
201b Philosophy Hall
Celine Aenlle-Rocha 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 837/15320 T Th 10:10am - 11:25am
408a Philosophy Hall
Alex Valin 3 10/14
ENGL 1010 855/15321 T Th 4:10pm - 5:25pm
408a Philosophy Hall
Anirbaan Banerjee 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 913/15322 M W 11:40am - 12:55pm
329 Uris Hall
Kathleen Tang 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 940/15324 T Th 11:40am - 12:55pm
652 Schermerhorn Hall
Vanessa Guida 3 13/14
Fall 2022: ENGL CC1010
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ENGL 1010 005/15348 M W 10:10am - 11:25am
502 Northwest Corner
Megan Lonsinger 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 015/15349 M W 1:10pm - 2:25pm
201d Philosophy Hall
Julia Bannon 3 13/14
ENGL 1010 016/16085 M W 2:40pm - 3:55pm
201d Philosophy Hall
Glenn Gordon 3 11/14
ENGL 1010 021/18423 M W 4:10pm - 5:25pm
104 Knox Hall
Therese Cox 3 13/14
ENGL 1010 023/18496 M W 4:10pm - 5:25pm
408a Philosophy Hall
Brianne Baker 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 032/18424 T Th 10:10am - 11:25am
201d Philosophy Hall
Emily Weitzman 3 12/14
ENGL 1010 034/18425 T Th 11:40am - 12:55pm
408a Philosophy Hall
Austin Mantele 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 035/18426 T Th 11:40am - 12:55pm
116 Knox Hall
Kirkwood Adams 3 13/14
ENGL 1010 036/15351 T Th 11:40am - 12:55pm
201d Philosophy Hall
Emily Foster 3 13/14
ENGL 1010 039/16078 T Th 1:10pm - 2:25pm
201d Philosophy Hall
Elena Dudum 3 13/14
ENGL 1010 048/18432 T Th 4:10pm - 5:25pm
408a Philosophy Hall
Celine Aenlle-Rocha 3 13/14
ENGL 1010 053/18435 T Th 4:10pm - 5:25pm
507 Lewisohn Hall
Austin Mantele 3 13/14
ENGL 1010 054/18746 T Th 2:40pm - 3:55pm
507 Lewisohn Hall
Catherine Suffern 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 055/18744 M W 8:40am - 9:55am
307 Mathematics Building
Gabrielle DaCosta 3 13/14
ENGL 1010 109/15352 M W 11:40am - 12:55pm
201d Philosophy Hall
Hannah Gold 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 122/18437 M W 4:10pm - 5:25pm
201b Philosophy Hall
Jessica Campbell 3 13/14
ENGL 1010 128/15353 T Th 8:40am - 9:55am
652 Schermerhorn Hall
Sarah Beah Jacobson 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 151/18458 T Th 5:40pm - 6:55pm
116 Knox Hall
Kirkwood Adams 3 12/14
ENGL 1010 203/15355 M W 8:40am - 9:55am
652 Schermerhorn Hall
Levi Catherine Hord 3 13/14
ENGL 1010 217/15356 M W 2:40pm - 3:55pm
502 Northwest Corner
Ashley Thomas 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 226/15357 M W 5:40pm - 6:55pm
201d Philosophy Hall
Natalie Adler 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 237/15358 T Th 11:40am - 12:55pm
201b Philosophy Hall
Connor Spencer 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 245/15359 T Th 2:40pm - 3:55pm
201d Philosophy Hall
Genevieve Shuster 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 311/15360 M W 11:40am - 12:55pm
315 Hamilton Hall
Jehbreal Jackson 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 320/15361 M W 4:10pm - 5:25pm
652 Schermerhorn Hall
Alice Clapie 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 329/15362 T Th 8:40am - 9:55am
502 Northwest Corner
Abigail Melick 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 331/15363 T Th 10:10am - 11:25am
652 Schermerhorn Hall
Alessia Palanti 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 340/15364 T Th 1:10pm - 2:25pm
201b Philosophy Hall
Claudia Grigg Edo 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 407/15365 M W 10:10am - 11:25am
201d Philosophy Hall
Grant Miner 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 408/18745 M W 5:40pm - 6:55pm
418 International Affairs Bldg
John Fitzgerald 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 419/18422 M W 2:40pm - 3:55pm
307 Mathematics Building
Seth Cosimini 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 447/18431 T Th 4:10pm - 5:25pm
212a Lewisohn Hall
Therese Cox 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 504/15367 M W 10:10am - 11:25am
201b Philosophy Hall
Ruilin Fan 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 512/18419 M W 1:10pm - 2:25pm
506 Lewisohn Hall
Elizabeth Walters 3 13/14
ENGL 1010 527/15368 T Th 8:40am - 9:55am
201d Philosophy Hall
Julia Ryan 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 541/15370 T Th 1:10pm - 2:25pm
476b Alfred Lerner Hall
Margaret Banks 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 546/18430 T Th 2:40pm - 3:55pm
502 Northwest Corner
Adam Winters 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 549/18439 T Th 4:10pm - 5:25pm
307 Mathematics Building
Michael Schoch 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 606/15371 M W 10:10am - 11:25am
307 Mathematics Building
Meg Zhang 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 613/15372 M W 1:10pm - 2:25pm
502 Northwest Corner
Angelica Modabber 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 625/15373 M W 5:40pm - 6:55pm
201b Philosophy Hall
Ayesha Verma 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 630/15374 T Th 10:10am - 11:25am
502 Northwest Corner
Kristie Schlauraff 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 733/15376 T Th 10:10am - 11:25am
201b Philosophy Hall
Wally Suphap 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 738/18427 T Th 1:10pm - 2:25pm
502 Northwest Corner
Pichaya Damrongpiwat 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 743/18428 T Th 2:40pm - 3:55pm
408a Philosophy Hall
Celine Aenlle-Rocha 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 808/15377 M W 11:40am - 12:55pm
201b Philosophy Hall
Tejan Waszak 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 818/16092 M W 2:40pm - 3:55pm
652 Schermerhorn Hall
Shanelle Kim 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 824/15378 M W 5:40pm - 6:55pm
307 Mathematics Building
Stephanie Wambugu 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 842/15379 T Th 2:40pm - 3:55pm
652 Schermerhorn Hall
Amy Barenboim 3 13/14
ENGL 1010 844/15380 T Th 2:40pm - 3:55pm
307 Mathematics Building
Catherine Fisher 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 850/15381 T Th 5:40pm - 6:55pm
502 Northwest Corner
Gabriella Etoniru 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 902/15382 M W 8:40am - 9:55am
502 Northwest Corner
Charles Green 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 910/18418 M W 11:40am - 12:55pm
506 Lewisohn Hall
Elizabeth Walters 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 914/15383 M W 1:10pm - 2:25pm
652 Schermerhorn Hall
Alina Shubina 3 14/14
ENGL 1010 952/18340 T Th 5:40pm - 6:55pm
501 International Affairs Bldg
Justin Snider 3 13/14

Senior Essay Methods Seminar

ENGL UN3795 SENIOR ESSAY RESEARCH METHODS. 3.00 points.

The senior essay is, for most English majors, the most substantial research you will have produced to this point in your intellectual life. As seniors tackle their essays, they discover that the methods they used to write smaller projects often don’t transfer to a project of this size. The English Senior Essay Seminar prepares English majors to make the leap to this longer project. It guides you through the process of crafting your proposal and teaches the research methods that you will rely upon to complete your thesis in the spring. In the process, you will learn what researchers have discovered about how seasoned scholars research and write. This learning prepares you for the next stage of your writing career, whether it be in graduate school or the workplace. By the end of the semester, you will produce about 20 pages of writing toward your senior essay, some of it in rough draft form and some more polished. That writing includes an evolving set of research questions, a literature review, a senior essay proposal, an outline, and partial rough drafts of two sections of your essay

Fall 2022: ENGL UN3795
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ENGL 3795 001/18301 F 2:10pm - 4:00pm
401 Hamilton Hall
Susan Mendelsohn 3.00 1/18
ENGL 3795 002/18302 W 6:10pm - 8:00pm
313 Pupin Laboratories
Yea Jung Park 3.00 0/18

Spring 2022

Introduction to the Major

ENGL UN3001 Literary Texts, Critical Methods. 4 points.

Prerequisites: Students who register for ENGL UN3001 must also register for one of the sections of ENGL UN3011 Literary Texts, Critical Methods.

This course is intended to introduce students to the advanced study of literature. Students will read works from different genres (poetry, drama, and prose fiction), drawn from the medieval period to the present day, learning the different interpretative techniques required by each. The course also introduces students to a variety of critical schools and approaches, with the aim both of familiarizing them with these methodologies in the work of other critics and of encouraging them to make use of different methods in their own critical writing. This course (together with the companion seminar ENGL UN3011) is a requirement for the English Major and Concentration. It should be taken as early as possible in a student's career. Fulfillment of this requirement will be a factor in admission to seminars and to some lectures.

Spring 2022: ENGL UN3001
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ENGL 3001 001/10726 F 10:00am - 11:25am
517 Hamilton Hall
Erik Gray 4 69/80
Fall 2022: ENGL UN3001
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ENGL 3001 001/12953 F 10:10am - 11:25am
313 Fayerweather
Erik Gray 4 75/75

Medieval 

ENGL UN3385 PLAYING WITH GENDER IN THE MIDDLE AGES. 4.00 points.

What kind of flexibility and play does gender signify in medieval literature? How was gender enacted and how did it impact identity, sexuality, shape-shifting, intimacy and empowerment? How does it echo in our ideas of queerness, closeness, and sexual identity as understood today? This class will look at how a kind of power associated with gender and sexuality figures in medieval literature and is echoed in contemporary poetics and theory. This course takes the idea of _play_ seriously (despite the paradoxical nature of this statement), discerning how gender embodies a form of discursive and non discursive play in premodern works. In doing so, we will examine how the definition of gender is implicated in theological, cultural, and scientific discourses on the nature of the body and sexuality, how it links to the role of the liminality in discourses of power, and how poetic play and gender figure in contemporary contexts, both literary and theoretical. We begin by looking at representations and attitudes towards gender in the Middle Ages via literary and non-literary texts, examining the role of gender in relation to rhetoric, philosophy, representations of Christ, Old Norse mythology, and more. We will then look at how medieval texts play with gender and speak to modern times. Often, medieval texts and modern theoretical work will be paired together to “dialogue” with one another. And, since dialogue is a trans-historical pedagogical form of play, we will see where our discussions take us, possibly mofifying the syllabus, letting our course transform along the way

Spring 2022: ENGL UN3385
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ENGL 3385 001/14393 Th 10:10am - 12:00pm
754 Ext Schermerhorn Hall
Patricia Dailey 4.00 14/18

ENGL UN3920 MEDIEVAL ENGLISH TEXTS. 4.00 points.

Prerequisites: the instructor's permission.
The class will read the poem Sir Gawain and the Green Knight in the original Middle English language of its unique surviving copy of circa 1400, and will discuss both the poem's language and the poem's literary meritThe class will read the poem Sir Gawain and the Green Knight in the original Middle English language of its unique surviving copy of circa 1400, and will discuss both the poem's language and the poem's literary merit

Spring 2022: ENGL UN3920
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ENGL 3920 001/10734 T 3:10pm - 5:00pm
568 Alfred Lerner Hall
David Yerkes 4.00 16/18

ENGL GU4729 Canterbury Tales. 3 points.

(Lecture). Beginning with an overview of late medieval literary culture in England, this course will cover the entire Canterbury Tales in the original Middle English.  We will explore the narrative and organizational logics that underpin the project overall, while also treating each individual tale as a coherent literary offering, positioned deliberately and recognizably on the map of late medieval cultural convention.  We will consider the conditions—both historical and aesthetic—that informed Chaucer’s motley composition, and will compare his work with other large-scale fictive works of the period.  Our ultimate project will be the assessment of the Tales at once as a self-consciously “medieval” production, keen to explore and exploit the boundaries of literary convention, and as a ground-breaking literary event, which set the stage for renaissance literature.

Spring 2022: ENGL GU4729
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ENGL 4729 001/10735 M W 10:10am - 11:25am
501 Northwest Corner
Eleanor Johnson 3 41/150

Renaissance

ENGL UN3331 MAKING PEOPLE PUBLIC ON THE EARLY MODERN STAGE. 4.00 points.

Before the development of mass media—newspapers, television, film—who was famous and why? What did such fame entail, and what were the cultural uses to which celebrated individuals were put? This seminar examines the early modern commercial theater’s role in making people public, particularly those individuals unaffiliated with the court. How do early modern forms of popular fame resemble and differ from classical notions of fama, from the kinds of celebrity made possible in the eighteenth-century, and even from our own? We will consider these questions by turning to plays written by a number of early modern playwrights, including Shakespeare, Thomas Middleton, Thomas Dekker, and John Webster, in a range of different genres (comedy, tragedy, history)

Spring 2022: ENGL UN3331
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ENGL 3331 001/15040 T 2:10pm - 4:00pm
601b Fairchild Life Sciences Bldg
Allison Deutermann 4.00 15/18

ENGL UN3336 Shakespeare II. 3 points.

(Lecture). Shakespeare II examines plays from the second half of Shakespeare’s dramatic career, primarily a selection of his major tragedies and his later comedies (or “romances”).

Spring 2022: ENGL UN3336
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ENGL 3336 001/10736 T Th 10:10am - 11:25am
603 Hamilton Hall
Jean Howard 3 24/45

CLEN GU4932 WITCHCRAFT AND LAW IN THE EARLY MODERN WORLD: NARRATIVES, IMAGES, DOCUMENTS. 4.00 points.

Between the fifteenth and eighteenth centuries, fear of witchcraft spread across Europe and the New World, leading to the prosecution of over one hundred thousand alleged witches. Historians continue to debate the causes and consequences of the witch hunts, often starting with analysis of large-scale political and religious upheavals, philosophical revolutions, socio-economic changes, and other historical data. In this class, we will start with stories, images, and documents: the narratives of the accused, witch-hunters, and judges; contemporary treatises, journalism, and openly fictional accounts; popular woodcuts, engravings, and paintings; depositions, trial transcripts, and judicial reports. We will look particularly closely at legal events: what happened in courtrooms, interrogation rooms, torture chambers, places of execution. We will examine well-known cases in England and New England, but also less well-known cases in Scotland, Germany, Mexico, and more. In addition to traditional seminar discussions, class sessions may include simulations, scene staging, and in-class writing exercises (creative and expository). To apply, please email Professor Peters (peters@columbia.edu) with the following information: year, school, major or program; relevant courses you’ve taken or other experience studying early modern texts; and a sentence or two on why you’d like to take the course

Spring 2022: CLEN GU4932
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
CLEN 4932 001/14446 W 4:10pm - 6:00pm
601 Fairchild Life Sciences Bldg
Julie Peters 4.00 44/60

18th and 19th Century

ENGL UN3328 EARLY AMERICAN LITERATURE: 1492-1852. 3.00 points.

The class aims to provide a broad acquaintance with classic works of American literature from the period 1492-1852. The emphasis will be on literature produced before the Declaration of Independence on July 4, 1776. Most people grow up thinking of this date as the starting point of US history: “a new birth of freedom,” as Abraham Lincoln called it. And it was, in a way. But we will be trying to understand it differently: as an end-point of the chaotic, multinational, multicultural world that was North America before the USA existed. Most of the texts composed during the first three centuries of American literature were written by authors who assumed that North America was destined forever to remain an outpost of the British, French, and Spanish empires. Before 1776, the Americans who most often dreamed of “declaring independence” were not white men in wigs, but rather enslaved people of African descent or members of Indigenous nations fighting to retain their sovereignty against the European empires. From these peoples’ perspective, the Revolutionary War did not bring an end to the “colonial period” of American history, as white Americans began telling themselves in the 1780s and 90s. According to early US nationalists like James Fenimore Cooper, America had already achieved freedom in a legal and political sense by the year 1800; now it just had to bring its culture up to speed. In reality, however, the ink on the Constitution had hardly dried before the USA became an empire in its own right. Freedom remained an unresolved problem that creators of American literature had to work through. That ongoing process, which began in the fifteenth century and continues today, is mainly what we will be studying

ENGL UN3386 CONTAGION AND THE VICTORIAN NOVEL. 4.00 points.

Contagion is a common feature of the Victorian literary imagination. And for good reason: contagious diseases proliferated in the 19th century, when transmission theories and treatment methods were still in flux. Many Victorian novels explicitly represent these epidemic illnesses, which might afflict specific characters or connect whole communities through networks of infection. But in addition to indexing the physical body’s very real susceptibility to communicable disease, the figure of contagion also harbors significant symbolic potential. What exactly did contagion mean for British writers in the 19th century? Who or what is identified as contagious in Victorian novels—and why? Our course takes these questions as a launch pad for studying contagion and the Victorian novel. Beginning with texts in which contagious disease plays an obvious role, we’ll make our way through a series of novels in which actual contagion features less and less overtly, but in which the idea of contagion maintains an influential presence. We’ll also read contemporary essays that offer critical frameworks for considering contagion from various angles: as an object of scientific and medical study; as a phenomenon that amplifies rhetorics and practices of racism and xenophobia; and as a symptom of interconnected life, in all its vulnerability. And we’ll think together about the place of the novel in 19th-century discourses on contagion. What made this literary form well-suited to exploring contagion’s causes and effects? What do we make of the fact that Victorian novels themselves were often seen as both literally and figuratively “contagious”? Novelists whose work we will engage with and compare include Mary Elizabeth Braddon, Charles Dickens, Elizabeth Gaskell, Bram Stoker, and H. G. Wells. As an aid to our comparative analysis, we’ll learn to use digital humanities tools Hypothesis and Palladio, which enable collaborative annotations of electronic texts and visual mapping of data. Using these programs, course participants will work together on a semester-long project of mapping contagion across Victorian novels: a “contact tracing” exercise that will allow us to make compelling connections among many different representations of contagion. At the same time, this class is also an experiment in the possibilities and limitations of a consciously “presentist” approach to literature: a way of engaging with literary works so as to illuminate contemporary concerns

Spring 2022: ENGL UN3386
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ENGL 3386 001/14394 T 12:10pm - 2:00pm
401 Hamilton Hall
Diana Newby 4.00 20/18

ENGL UN3389 AMERICAN EXTINCTIONS: THE MAKING OF THE NEW WORLD. 4.00 points.

Contemporary portrayals of extinction often suggest the novelty of its occurrence and progress. Yet extinction has been a consistent and defining phenomenon in the American hemisphere since its colonization, unfolding in various modalities: as an historical narrative, an affective haunt, an ecological danger, and a colonial practice. This course will seek to make sense of the importance of extinction as both a foundational narrative and a lived reality of the "New World." We will examine how extinction in multiple forms was necessary for the establishment of early colonial societies, and chart an alternative history of the American democracy through literary records that bear witness to how settlers' claims of possession wreaked dispossession for other humans, animals, and plants on unparalleled scales. When extinction is imposed by forces of colonization, racism, sexism, anthropocentrism, and war, what possibilities of evasion or survival are there? What forms of remembrance can be had for extinguished lives? How does the idea of extinction push us to rethink how we understand life itself? No prerequisites

Spring 2022: ENGL UN3389
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ENGL 3389 001/10737 W 12:10pm - 2:00pm
405 Kent Hall
Ami Yoon 4.00 11/18

ENGL UN3932 The American Renaissance. 4 points.

Prerequisites: the instructor's permission.

In this seminar, we will aim to do two things at once: first and most importantly, to read the literary texts inside--and one or two lying outside--the tradition of the "American Renaissance" or the category of "Classic American Literature." But we will also analyze some works of recent criticism that have produced, defended, and/or contested this tradition. What texts, or parts of texts do critics valorize or emphasize, or devalue and ignore, in order to make and maintain a tradition such as this one? When and with what effects are works of literary criticism themselves structured and emplotted like the literary texts they describe?

Spring 2022: ENGL UN3932
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ENGL 3932 001/10738 M 2:10pm - 4:00pm
306 Uris Hall
Branka Arsic 4 14/18

CLRS GU4038 Dostoevsky in the 1870s: Demons, Diary of a Writer, Adolescent, and Dickens.. 3 points.

A study of Dostoevsky and Dickens as two writers whose engagement in the here and now was vital to their work and to their practice of the novel. Readings from Dostoevsky cluster in the 1870s and include two novels, Demons (1872) and The Adolescent (1876), and selections from his Diary of a Writer. Readings from Dickens span his career and include, in addition to David Copperfield (1850), sketches and later essays.

Spring 2022: CLRS GU4038
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
CLRS 4038 001/13449 M W 2:40pm - 3:55pm
607 Hamilton Hall
Liza Knapp 3 15/20

CLGR W4360 Faust and Media [In English]. 3 points.

Not offered during 2022-23 academic year.

The relationship between Faust and media, in particular, visual media.  Authors include Marlowe, Goethe, Robert Browning, Gounod, Murnau, and Thomas Mann, and related critical theory.

ENGL GU4236 ECO-POETRY FROM THE ROMANTICS TO THE PRESENT. 4.00 points.

Wordsworth famously wrote that “Nature never did betray / the heart that loved her,” but is the reverse true? This course will explore the entanglement of literature and the environment from two vantage points: the first is Romantic-era England, which coincided with the onset of the industrial revolution that put the earth on a course of mass extinction and climate change. The second is the period from around 1980 to the present, after the birth of the modern environmental movement, when the devastating effects of human activity on the earth became an unavoidable subject for many poets. After spending time with both canonical and overlooked Romantic nature poetry (including Wordsworth, Charlotte Smith, Shelley, John Clare), we will turn in the second half of the semester to a global group of contemporary eco-poets variously taking up, transforming, deflecting, or unraveling Romantic-era ideas of “Nature” in light of contemporary environmental crises and the age of the Anthropocene. The seminar will focus on close reading and discussion of poems, but will also introduce some elementary concepts, concerns, and practices of what is called “eco-criticism,” a relatively recent mode of reading literature first developed by scholars of Romanticism. Some questions we may consider include: How might poetic language be particularly attuned to intimations of ecological change and collapse? How do and how should poetic forms and traditions shift in the wake of environmental crisis? How might poems help us cultivate arts of noticing, forms of resistance, and modes of dwelling in common with non-human life? Reading contemporary poets like Will Alexander and Etel Adnan, we will also explore how literature can connect with various scales and dimensions of existence, including the seasonal, the elemental, the planetary, and even the cosmic. Along the way, we will critically explore how both ecology and poetic practice are inflected by issues of race, gender, sexuality, and capitalism

Spring 2022: ENGL GU4236
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ENGL 4236 001/14423 T 4:10pm - 6:00pm
308a Lewisohn Hall
Joseph Albernaz 4.00 11/18

ENGL GU4404 Victorian Poetry. 3 points.

Open to all undergraduates (regardless of major) and graduate students.

(Lecture). This course examines the works of the major English poets of the period 1830-1900. We will pay special attention to Alfred Tennyson and Robert Browning, and their great poetic innovation, the dramatic monologue. We will also be concentrating on poems by Elizabeth Barrett Browning, Gerard Manley Hopkins, Christina Rossetti, Matthew Arnold, A. E. Housman, and Thomas Hardy.

Spring 2022: ENGL GU4404
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ENGL 4404 001/10739 M W 10:10am - 11:25am
516 Hamilton Hall
Erik Gray 3 30/54

ENGL GU4802 History of the English Novel. 3 points.

A survey of works by major English novelists from Austen to Hardy, stressing the great variety of style and narrative structure gathered under the notion of “realism.” As these authors represent the interplay of individual consciousness and social norms (class, gender, marriage, family), they explore tensions generated by new possibilities of social mobility and self-determination within the most dynamic economic order the world had ever seen. We'll be especially interested in the novel’s preoccupation with domestic life, and the striking transformations of the "marriage plot" in a world of great social and sexual anxiety. In short, stories of love and money. Austen, Mansfield Park; Charlotte Bronte, Jane Eyre; Dickens, Great Expectations; George Eliot, Middlemarch; Trollope, Barchester Towers; Hardy, Jude the Obscure.

Spring 2022: ENGL GU4802
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ENGL 4802 001/10740 M W 2:40pm - 3:55pm
503 Hamilton Hall
James Adams 3 12/54

20th and 21st Century

ENGL UN3022 CONTEMPORARY WAR LITERATURE. 4.00 points.

This seminar will explore recent writing about war and conflict from the perspective of combatants, civilians, embedded journalists, medics, military families, and veterans. Together we’ll read a range of contemporary novels, short stories, and reportage and examine how writers describe, critique, report, imagine, and experience war. The course will be organized into three sections: anticipating war, experiencing war, and returning from war. We’ll draw on canonical works of 20th century war literature by Wilfred Owen, Virginia Woolf, Rebecca West, Tim O’Brien, and Michael Herr, and connect these works to writing about war and conflict from the 21st century. We’ll read fiction and reportage by Phil Klay, Viet Than Nguyen, Anna Burns, Salar Abdoh, C.J. Chivers, Matt Gallagher, Graham Barnhart, Ben Fountain, Teresa Fazio, Ahmed Saadawi, and Will Mackin, and others, as well as contemporary war poetry from the United States and Afghanistan

Spring 2022: ENGL UN3022
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ENGL 3022 001/14397 T 12:10pm - 2:00pm
555 Alfred Lerner Hall
Therese Cox 4.00 17/18

ENGL UN3039 POSTWAR FICTION AND ARCHITECTURE. 4.00 points.

This seminar will examine how fiction in postwar Britain was transformed by developments in architecture and urban design in the 20th and 21st centuries. From high-rises and high-density housing to suburbs and urban sprawl, from the privatization of public space to the rise of surveillance architecture, we will examine how writers after WWII turned new developments in architecture into new kinds of stories and storytelling. We’ll learn about developments in urban design while centering our attention on close reading and narrative. While emphasizing the novel, we’ll also read short stories, architectural criticism, essays, and zines. We’ll read novels by George Orwell, Zadie Smith, J.G. Ballard, Anthony Burgess, Pat Barker, and Jenni Fagan as well as architectural writings by Le Corbusier, Alison and Peter Smithson, Archigram, and Denise Scott Brown. We’ll consider both architecture and fiction as speculative arts, in which unbuilt projects can tell us as much about cities, society, and storytelling as the built environment can. Through practices of close reading and research, we’ll learn to think across disciplines and explore how both architecture and fiction imagine utopia, dystopia, and the architecture of everyday life

Spring 2022: ENGL UN3039
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ENGL 3039 001/14396 W 12:10pm - 2:00pm
522c Kent Hall
Therese Cox 4.00 17/18

ENGL UN3042 Ulysses. 4 points.

The seminar will look at the structure of the novel, its plan, with special attention paid to ‘The Odyssey’, but also to the variations in tone in the book, the parodies and elaborate games becoming more complex as the book proceeds. We will examine a number of Irish texts that are relevant to the making of ‘Ulysses’, including Robert Emmett’s speech from the dock, Yeats’s ‘The Countess Cathleen’ and Lady Gregory translations from Irish folk-tales.

Spring 2022: ENGL UN3042
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ENGL 3042 001/10744 T 12:10pm - 2:00pm
402 Hamilton Hall
Colm Toibin 4 20/21

ENGL UN3225 VIRGINIA WOOLF. 3.00 points.

(Lecture). Six novels and some non-fictional prose: Jacobs Room, Mrs. Dalloway, To the Lighthouse, Orlando, The Waves, Between the Acts; A Room of Ones Own, Three Guineas

Spring 2022: ENGL UN3225
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ENGL 3225 001/11360 T Th 10:10am - 11:25am
602 Hamilton Hall
Edward Mendelson 3.00 62/80

ENGL UN3636 COLLECTIONS: CONTEMPORARY AMERICAN SHORT STORIES. 4 points.

In this course, we will examine short stories as a particularly American form. The short story has been notoriously difficult to define, but one key characteristic of the genre is its presumed compact form alongside its compelling expansiveness. Short stories constantly toggle back and forth between the compressed and the broad. In the United States, the genre of short story has a long history of articulating and imagining an individual or community’s changing and fraught relationship to transnational, national, and local dynamics (represented, for example, nineteenth and early twentieth-century authors such as Edgar Allan Poe, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Mary Wilkins Freeman, Sui Sin Far, Washington Irving, Charles Chestnutt, Mark Twain, Sarah Orne Jewett, Tillie Olsen, José García Villa, and Carlos Bulosan). Today, this catalog of writers can be matched with another list of contemporary North American short story authors featured on our syllabus: Jhumpa Lahiri, Chimamanda Adichie, Daniel Alarcón, Mohsin Hamid, George Saunders, Ted Chiang, Mona Award, Lydia Davis, Vanessa Hua, R. Zamora Linmark, Otesha Moshfegh, and Leanne Simpson. Some of the writers on this list are veterans of the short story form. Others are authors who recently published debut collections. As we work through our reading list, we will attempt to analyze not only individual short stories, but also what marks these books as collections. What might hold these texts together? What disrupts the unifying principles of a collection? And most importantly, what do short stories offer—in terms of representations of American life and culture and its complexity—that other forms do not?

Spring 2022: ENGL UN3636
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ENGL 3636 001/10741 W 10:10am - 12:00pm
401 Hamilton Hall
Denise Cruz 4 16/16
Fall 2022: ENGL UN3636
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ENGL 3636 001/10242 T 12:10pm - 2:00pm
707 Hamilton Hall
Denise Cruz 4 14/18

ENGL UN3710 The Beat Generation. 4 points.

Limited to seniors. Priority given to those who have taken at least one course in 20th-century American culture, especially history, jazz, film, and literature.

Prerequisites: Permission of instructor.

(Seminar). Surveys the work of the Beats and other artists connected to the Beat movement. Readings include works by Jack Kerouac, Allen Ginsberg, William Burroughs, Amiri Baraka, and Joyce Johnson, as well as background material in the post-World War II era, films with James Dean and Marlon Brando, and the music of Charlie Parker and Thelonius Monk. Application instructions: E-mail Professor Ann Douglas (ad34@columbia.edu) with the subject heading "The Beat Generation". In your message, include basic information: your name, school, major, year of study, and relevant courses taken, along with a brief statement about why you are interested in taking the course. Admitted students should register for the course; they will automatically be placed on a wait list, from which the instructor will in due course admit them as spaces become available.

Spring 2022: ENGL UN3710
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ENGL 3710 001/10742 W 6:10pm - 8:00pm
612 Philosophy Hall
Ann Douglas 4 23/22

CLEN UN3741 LITERATURE OF LOST LANDS. 4.00 points.

This course seeks to entice you into readings in the literature of lost and submerged continents, as well as of remote lands hidden from history. While now often relegated to the stuff of science fiction, accounts of submerged land-masses were among the most serious popular literature of the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, and readers were riveted by the enduring mystery about the lost continents of Atlantis and Lemuria. Works about these and other lost lands inspired a form of “occult ethnography.” Novels such as The Coming Race (1871) drew on the popular fascination with buried land-masses in order to re-imagine alternative narratives in which the “imperial English” would be colonized by a new race of people rising from the forgotten depths of the earth. At one level, the use of ethnographic details in such novels provided an ironic commentary on the European ethnographies of colonized peoples. But at another level it also offered a visionary description of a world as yet unseen and unknown, so that the idea of the past itself becomes less stable in the cultural imagination. In animating the details of a rediscovered people, occult ethnography both drew on and subverted evolutionary models of development by showing these “lost” people, in some instances, to have reached the highest perfection possible, both in technological capability and human potential. The unsettling of established and familiar conceptions of nation, history, and cultural identity through the exploration of lost or drifting lands reaches an apex in José Saramago’s The Stone Raft (1986). In probing the enduring fascination with lost or separated lands in the cultural imagination, the course hopes to illuminate the importance of such literature in unveiling the processes of colonization, ethnography, nationalism, evolution, and technology, as well as understanding the writing of history itself: i.e., what is included in mainstream accounts and what is left out. Application Instructions: E-mail Professor Viswanathan (gv6@columbia.edu) with the subject heading Literature of Lost Lands seminar. In your message, include basic information: your name, school, major, year of study, and relevant courses taken, along with a brief statement about why you are interested in taking the course. Please note that you will not be able to enroll in the class without Prof. Viswanathan's approval

Spring 2022: CLEN UN3741
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
CLEN 3741 001/10743 W 4:10pm - 6:00pm
612 Philosophy Hall
Gauri Viswanathan 4.00 12/15

ENTA UN3754 CRITICAL HISTORIES OF AMERICAN MUSICAL THEATRE. 4.00 points.

This course offers a critical introduction to the development and history of American musical theatre. We will examine the musical theatre canon, beginning with Shuffle Along in 1921 and finishing with Hamilton in 2015, to understand how the musical developed as an American theatrical form. We will also consider how the musical responds to the cultural and historical moment surrounding it. As David Savran has written even for “many devotees of the so-called straight theatre, musical theatre remains (at best) a guilty pleasure – a little too gay, too popular, too Jewish, and too much damned fun.” This course will analyze the theatrical form of that “guilty pleasure.” We will pay particular attention to what these musicals tell us about race, gender, ethnicity, and sexuality in America. Our class discussions will focus on contextualizing the various affordances of the musical and closely analyzing the specifically musical attributes of a show. This course will invite students to develop in-depth readings of musicals by analyzing the genre’s formal components: music, lyrics, book, orchestrations, and choreography. Throughout the course we will pay particular attention to a set of key questions: how do these musicals represent what it means to be an American? Who is marginalized in musicals and who is centered, and how do musicals change when they are revived? How do musicals represent and engage with changing conceptions of race and gender? What does the experience of watching a musical do to an audience, and how does the experience create a plurality of possible meanings at different historical moments? While we will listen to music in this course, the ability to read music is not required

Spring 2022: ENTA UN3754
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ENTA 3754 001/10745 W 12:10pm - 2:00pm
401 Hamilton Hall
Anne Potter 4.00 16/18

AMST UN3931 Topics in American Studies. 4 points.

Please refer to the Center for American Studies for section descriptions

Spring 2022: AMST UN3931
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
AMST 3931 001/11222 M 2:10pm - 4:00pm
317 Hamilton Hall
Andrew Delbanco, Roger Lehecka 4 12/15
AMST 3931 002/11205 W 12:10pm - 2:00pm
317 Hamilton Hall
Lynne Breslin 4 12/19
AMST 3931 003/13849 T 4:10pm - 6:00pm
317 Hamilton Hall
Cathleen Price 4 14/15
AMST 3931 004/13853 Th 4:10pm - 6:00pm
609 Hamilton Hall
Robert Pollack, Craig Blinderman 4 20/18
AMST 3931 005/14376 W 4:10pm - 6:00pm
317 Hamilton Hall
Ross Posnock 4 11/18

ENGL GU4622 African-American Literature II. 3 points.

(Lecture). This survey of African American literature focuses on language, history, and culture. What are the contours of African American literary history? How do race, gender, class, and sexuality intersect within the politics of African American culture? What can we expect to learn from these literary works? Why does our literature matter to student of social change? This lecture course will attempt to provide answers to these questions, as we begin with Zora Neale Hurston's Their Eyes Were Watching God (1937) and Richard Wright's Native Son (1940) and end with Melvin Dixon's Love's Instruments (1995) with many stops along the way. We will discuss poetry, fiction, drama, and non-fictional prose. Ohter authors include Ralph Ellison, James Baldwin, Gwendolyn Brooks, Malcom X, Ntzozake Shange, Audre Lorde, and Toni Morrison. There are no prerequisites for this course. The formal assignments are two five-page essays and a final examination. Class participation will be graded.

Spring 2022: ENGL GU4622
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ENGL 4622 001/10746 T Th 11:40am - 12:55pm
603 Hamilton Hall
Robert O'Meally 3 39/54

ENGL GU4726 HENRY JAMES. 4.00 points.

The seminar will scrutinize four novels and three shorter works by Henry James. It will concentrate on style and structure, how James’s style developed between ‘Washington Square’ (1879) to ‘The Golden Bowl’ (1904). The four novels on the course – ‘The Portrait of a Lady’, ‘The Ambassadors’, ‘The Wings of the Dove’, ‘The Golden Bowl’ – each dramatize the same subject, a single American (or in the case of ‘The Golden Bowl’ a group of Americans) arriving in Europe to confront their destiny. As he proceeds, James narrows the perspective while deriving more energy from the intensity of the relations between the characters. He refines the narrative structure, the point of view. His late style is not a simple matter of longer and more complex sentences, but a way of rendering consciousness and describing scenes that shifts between a diction that is nuanced and a sharp use of phrasal verbs and a conversational tone. The three shorter texts are ‘Washington Square’ and ‘The Turn of the Screw’. The outcome for the students will be a close knowledge of these texts, with some passages studied in detail and with much emphasis on the idea of narrative structure. They will learn to look with care at the creation of scenes in James, with emphasis on his interest in configuration as much as character. They will also learn to read and study style and tone in James’s fiction as complex, requiring close attention. By the end of the semester, they will have come to see that, in the study of any literary text, making distinctions is as important as making connections. The seminar will also look at these novels – especially ‘The Portrait of a Lady’ – in the context of other nineteenth century novels, especially George Eliot’s ‘Middlemarch’ and ‘Daniel Deronda’, and in the light of Henry James’s ‘Hawthorne’ and some of his letters and prefaces. Thus, the outcome for the students will include a knowledge of James as a novelist of his time and also of James as a singular figure, working in isolation, getting his energy from concerns that are pressing and personal as he seeks to dramatize what is secret and concealed, as his style itself moves between suggestion, implication and moments of pure clarity

Spring 2022: ENGL GU4726
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ENGL 4726 001/14422 M 4:10pm - 6:00pm
405a International Affairs Bldg
Colm Toibin 4.00 15/18

ENTA GU4729 GLOBAL ANGLOPHONE DRAMA. 4.00 points.

This seminar explores a wide range of twentieth- and twenty-first century dramas from Africa, the Caribbean, South Asia, and North America as well as their diverse diaspora cultures. We investigate how theater artists have worked to dismatle imperial structures and to make sense of the social and material conditions that persist in the wake of colonial violence. Reading internationally renowned playwrights such as Derek Walcott, Wole Soyinka, and Cherrie Moraga as well as emerging contemporary dramatists, we consider how these playwrights have enagaged with the cultures, economies, and ecologies of imperialism. In the process, we discover how dramatic literature invents new vocabularies for describing and theorizing diaspora, migration, and transcultural exchange. Drawing upon criticial approaches from theater and performances studies as well as postcolonial theory, we ask how dramatists receive and reinterpret a model of the global Anglophone world. We also track how theories of global Anglophone literature are themselves entagled with the language and practice of performace

Spring 2022: ENTA GU4729
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ENTA 4729 001/14448 Th 4:10pm - 6:00pm
306 Uris Hall
Rebecca Kastleman 4.00 10/18

ENGL GU4931 NEW YORK INTELLECTUALS: MARY MCCARTHY, HANNAH ARENDT, SUSAN SONTAG. 4.00 points.

The nation’s most distinguished homegrown network of thinkers and writers, the New York intellectuals, clustered in its major decades from the late thirties to the late sixties up and down Manhattan, centered mainly in and around Columbia University and the magazine Partisan Review on Astor Place. Although usually regarded as male dominated— Lionel Trilling, Clement Greenberg and Dwight Macdonald were among the leaders—more recently the three key women of the group have emerged as perhaps the boldest modernist thinkers most relevant for our own time. Arendt is a major political philosopher, McCarthy a distinguished novelist, memoirist, and critic, and Susan Sontag was the most famous public intellectual in the last quarter of the 20th century. This course will explore how this resolutely unsentimental trio—dubbed by one critic as “tough women” who insisted on the priority of reflection over feeling—were unafraid to court controversy and even outrage: Hannah Arendt’s report on what she called the “banality” of Nazi evil in her report on the trial in Israel of Adolph Eichmann in 1963 remains incendiary; Mary McCarthy’s satirical wit and unprecedented sexual frankness startled readers of her 1942 story collection The Company She Keeps; Susan Sontag’s debut Against Interpretation (1966) turned against the suffocatingly elitist taste of the New York intellectuals and welcomed what she dubbed the “New Sensibility”—“happenings,” “camp,” experimental film and all manner of avant-garde production. In her later book On Photography (1977) she critiques the disturbing photography of Diane Arbus, whose images we will examine in tandem with Sontag’s book

Spring 2022: ENGL GU4931
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ENGL 4931 001/10748 Th 12:10pm - 2:00pm
613 Hamilton Hall
Ross Posnock 4.00 15/18

ENGL GU4956 THE ASIAN AMERICAN NOVEL. 4.00 points.

What does it mean to write an Asian American novel? In this seminar, we will explore this question by examining a range of novels written by Asian American authors. I use the term “Asian American” to underscore its political importance as an identity and community formation that consolidated in the late 1960s. These novels we will read were published from the early twentieth century to as recently as earlier this calendar year. Some are bestsellers, prize winners, or have been deemed as pivotal to the development of Asian American literature and its history. Others are not. Some are well known authors; others are newer or emergent writers. Some feature characters who are Asian or Asian American. Others explicitly questions our assumptions and expectations regarding literary and cultural representations of Asians and Asian Americans. Across their work, these authors are nevertheless held together in part by their engagement with transnational relations in Asia and North America, including U.S. expansion across to the Pacific, migration and immigration legislation, labor exclusions and political resistance, and the changing dynamics of the United States in the wake of a so-called global Asian century. A guiding principle will inform our work: Asian American writers have long been interested in theorizing the novel as an artistic, literary, and political form. While the content of these novels will of course be important, we will also examine how Asian American writers have explicitly experimented with the form of the novel as a genre, including romance, bildungsroman, hybrid creative nonfiction, speculative fiction, postmodern palimpsest, YA novel, apocalyptic dystopia. To guide us in this goal, we will read scholars who have theorized the novel as a genre, we’ll also situate this work alongside the substantial history of Asian American literary scholarship on the novel

Spring 2022: ENGL GU4956
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ENGL 4956 001/14447 T 12:10pm - 2:00pm
302 Fayerweather
Denise Cruz 4.00 16/16

Special Topics

ENGL UN3394 How Writers Think: Pedagogy and Practice. 4 points.

Prerequisites: Permission of instructor.

(Seminar). This course uses contemporary philosophies of research and writing to train students to become writing center and library consultants. Readings will highlight major voices in rhetoric and composition research, with an emphasis on collaborative learning theory. We will ground our study in hands-on teaching experiences: students will shadow Columbia Writing Center consultants and research librarians and then practice strategies they learn in consultation with other students. Those who successfully complete this course will be eligible to apply for a peer writing consultant job in the Columbia Writing Center. This course is co-taught by the director of the Writing Center and the undergraduate services librarian.

Spring 2022: ENGL UN3394
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ENGL 3394 001/17023 Th 2:10pm - 4:00pm
612 Philosophy Hall
Susan Mendelsohn 4 16/18

ENGL UN3738 Philanthropy and Social Difference. 4 points.

Philanthropy and Social Difference will introduce students to the history of Anglo-American philanthropy, as described in both historical and literary texts by writers including Jane Addams, James Agee, Andrew Carnegie, and George Orwell.  Through reading these texts, students will receive an experiential perspective on the social problems that philanthropy seeks to address.  The course will also focus on best practices in contemporary philanthropy, teaching students how to make informed decisions in making grants to nonprofit organizations.  In addition, students will have the opportunity to practice philanthropy directly by making grants from course funds to nonprofit organizations selected by the class.

Spring 2022: ENGL UN3738
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ENGL 3738 001/13775 M 12:10pm - 2:00pm
311 Fayerweather
Victoria Rosner 4 17/18

ENTA GU4625 SHAKESPEARE PERFORMANCE STUDIES. 4.00 points.

This course will work across three general approaches to Shakespearean drama and performance. First, we’ll consider the historical forms of performance that have used Shakespearean drama as the material for theatrical endeavor. Second, we’ll consider theoretical paradigms for performance that resituate an understanding that privileges either the “theatrical” or the “literary” identity of Shakespeare’s plays. And, finally, we’ll consider how we might consider the plays as themselves theoretical instruments for thinking about performance. Throughout the semester we will consider stage, film, and online productions, and the ways they articulate a sense of both “Shakespeare” and “performance.” This course is a seminar, and while there is no formal prerequisite, students who have had a previous Shakespeare course will find the reading more manageable: we will rarely be doing the kind of “overview” of a play, but will be incisively considering specific elements of performance. Application Instructions: E-mail the instructor wworthen@barnard.edu with the title of the course in the subject line. In your message, include basic information: your name, school, major, year of study, and relevant courses taken, along with a brief statement about why you are interested in taking the course. Admitted students should register for the course; they will automatically be placed on a wait list, from which the instructor will admit them as spaces become available

Spring 2022: ENTA GU4625
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ENTA 4625 002/00055 M 10:10am - 12:00pm
Ll105 Diana Center
William Worthen 4.00 8/14

ENGL GU4628 U.S. Latinx literature. 3 points.

This course will focus on Latinx literature in the United States from the mid-twentieth century to the present and provide a historical, literary, and theoretical context for this production. It will examine a wide range of genres, including poetry, memoir, essays, and fiction, with special emphasis on works by Cubans, Dominicans, Mexican-Americans and Puerto Ricans. Among the authors that the course will study are Richard Rodríguez, Esmeralda Santiago, Rudolfo Anaya, Julia Alvarez, Cristina García, Gloria Anzaldúa, and Piri Thomas.

Spring 2022: ENGL GU4628
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ENGL 4628 001/10756 T Th 2:40pm - 3:55pm
703 Hamilton Hall
Frances Negron-Muntaner 3 28/56

CLEN GU4728 Literature in the Age of Artificial Intelligence. 3 points.

In this course we will consider the long history of literature composed with, for, and by machines. Our reading list will start with Ramon Llull, the thirteenth-century combinatorial mystic, and continue with readings from Gottfried Leibniz, Francis Bacon, Jonathan Swift, and Samuel Butler. We will read "Plot Robots" instrumental to the writing of Hollywood scripts and pulp fiction of the 1920s, the avant-garde poetry of Dada and OULIPO, computer-generated love letters written by Alan Turing, and novels created by the first generation of artificial intelligence researchers in the 1950s and 60s. The course will conclude at the present moment, with an exploration of machine learning techniques of the sort used by Siri, Alexa, and other contemporary chat bots.  

Spring 2022: CLEN GU4728
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
CLEN 4728 001/10732 M W 10:10am - 11:25am
503 Hamilton Hall
Dennis Tenen 3 37/54

ENGL GU4901 History of the English Language. 3 points.

(Lecture). A survey of the history of the English language from before Old English to 21st Century Modern English, with no background in linguistics required. Grammar, dialectal variety, and social history will be covered to roughly equal extents. Requirements include three examinations, one of them an extended take-home exercise. Lecture format with some discussion depending on the topic.

Spring 2022: ENGL GU4901
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ENGL 4901 001/15525 T Th 10:10am - 11:25am
516 Hamilton Hall
John McWhorter 3 21/54

ENGL GU4938 HISTORY OF HORROR. 3.00 points.

This course will take a longue durée approach to one of the most widely-attested, and least studied, genres in the western canon: horror. We will take as an orienting assumption the idea that horror is a serious genre, capable of deep and sustained cultural, political, and historical critique, despite its contemporary status as “pulpy” or “pop culture.” We will ask what horror is as an affective and cognitive state, and we will also ask what horror means as a genre. We will ask how horror gets registered in narrative, drama, and in poetic form, and we will address how horror evolves over the centuries. Indeed, the course will range widely, beginning in the early 14th century, and ending in the second decade of the 21st. We will explore multiple different sub-genres of horror, ranging from lyric poetry to film, to explore how horror afforded authors with a highly flexible and experimental means of thinking through enduring questions about human life, linguistic meaning, social connectedness, connectedness with The Beyond, scientific inquiry, and violence. We will explore a series of through-lines: most notably that of cultural otherness, with Jewishness as a particularly archetypal other, thus the pronounced treatment of Jewish literature throughout the course. Other through-lines will include the ideas of placelessness, violence toward women, perverse Christian ritual, and the uncanny valley that separates humans from non-humans. Ultimately, we will try to map out the kinds of social, political, and historical work that horror can do

Spring 2022: ENGL GU4938
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ENGL 4938 001/15195 T Th 10:10am - 11:25am
301 Uris Hall
Jeremy Dauber, Eleanor Johnson 3.00 122/200

ENGL GU4943 CRITICISM AND POLITICS. 4.00 points.

“Poetry makes nothing happen.” So wrote W. H. Auden, encapsulating one of the most powerful concepts in literature for the last 100 years: literature is not meant to do anything in the world, it is not directly interventionist; it is meant to stand the test of time but not to intervene in the politics of the moment or change the views of readers. This is the orthodoxy of modernism and its entrenched legacies. In this course, we will explore an alternate model of literary self-assessment: the desire to effect real changes in one’s society. “Books that Change the World” is offered as a thought exercise, a new way to conceptualize literary self-understanding and value. We will read works mostly from the 20th century, with several forays into the 19th and 21st, wondering how, if at all, these might aim to stimulate new ways of reading, thinking, responding, and indeed writing, in an activist spirit. The course is organized thematically and chronologically, with works from the U.S., England, Canada, India, and elsewhere. Each week we will read a novel (some novels are spread across two weeks), and these will often be paired with other materials, such as visual works, other literary materials, theoretical readings, etc. Themes to which these activist works are geared include: slavery and abolition; working conditions; gender and patriarchy; war and revolution; race and racism; and environmental crisis. This is a discussion seminar, and each student is expected to participate in every class meeting. The primary written work for the course is a final paper on a book of your choosing; the question will be, what work would you add to our syllabus, and why? The paper is an explanation/defense of your selection, with critical reading of the text itself along with appropriate context, and it is due at the end of the semester. Students concerned about work management can meet with me to come up with a different time-table. Weekly reading responses, posted to the Canvas page, are also required. In addition, after the first two weeks, we will begin each class with a short student presentation on the material (an outline is also required, to be shared with the group). Your grade for the course will be determined as follows: final paper (30%); presentation and outline (20%); class participation and reading responses (50%). Please note the heavy weight toward classroom participation and reading responses. If participating in class is not comfortable for you, please see me early on and we can work out some alternatives. The goal for our classroom is to be inclusive and to stimulate a positive, active learning environment for all

Spring 2022: ENGL GU4943
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ENGL 4943 001/15167 M 4:10pm - 6:00pm
327 Uris Hall
Sarah Cole 4.00 17/18