2013 Summer Course Descriptions

Course Title: Effective Writing

Course Code: ENG100H5F

Instructor: Ella Soper

Course Description: This course is designed to cultivate writing proficiency. Through direct instruction in analytical methods, argumentation, and the principles of effective writing, we will foster an appreciation for the habits of mind required of academic writers from across the curriculum. Weekly writing assignments will give students the opportunity to hone these skills; regular group work will help students become adept at the critical evaluation of others’ writing, and will also help students become better editors of their own work.

This course does not meet the needs of students primarily seeking to develop English language proficiency.

Required Reading: David Rosenwasser, Jill Stephen, and Doug Babington, Writing Analytically (2nd Canadian ed.; Nelson Education). Other readings will be available on the course website and/or distributed in class.

First Three Texts/Authors to be Studied: Rosenwasser, Stephen, and Babington

Method of Instruction: Lecture and group workshops

Method of Evaluation: Participation (10%), First Writing Assignment (10%), Other Writing Assignments (3 x 15% each), In-Class Test (10%), Final Exam (25%)

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Course Code: ENG100H5S

Course Title: Effective Writing

Instructor: H. Forsythe Paul

Course Description: This is an intensive writing course for students who wish to improve their skills in writing descriptive and persuasive prose. It begins with a review of the fundamentals, including grammar, punctuation, syntax, and paragraph structure. Subsequent lessons and in-class exercises (“workshops”) examine different academic and professional genres (the letter, essay, comparison essay, exam essay), as well as some issues (voice, inclusive language, plagiarism) which inform successful composition. The essay and the stages of essay-writing (planning, outlining, drafting, revision) are examined closely in the second half of the course. Frequent assignments and exercises are designed to develop students’ understanding of the elements and processes which promote clear, precise, and logical writing.

The course is NOT designed to provide basic proficiency in the English language. Students need a solid command of the English language to meet the course requirements.

Required Reading: The class textbook is Sarah Norton and Brian Green’s The Bare Essentials: Plus Third Edition (Toronto: Harcourt, 2007). Students also need to have a dictionary with Canadian spelling, such as the Gage Canadian Dictionary or the Canadian Dictionary of the English Language. Other readings and course materials will be available on our course website.

First Three Texts/Authors to be Studied: Norton and Green, Pater, White

Method of Instruction: We’ll generally begin with a lecture and then move into workshops that explore the ideas and concepts explained in the lectures. As we move into the writing assignments, a portion of each week’s time will be devoted to peer editing and discussion. Instructions on peer editing will be provided in class.

Method of Evaluation: Students will build a writer’s journal of drafts, assignments and exercises. An in-class quiz will follow our opening unit on grammar, syntax, and punctuation. There will be three essays (with peer editing), a participation mark, and a final exam.

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Course Title: Rhetoric

Course Code: ENG205H5F

Instructor: Chester N. Scoville

Course Description: A historical survey of the major theorists of rhetoric from the ancient world to the present day, including such writers as Plato, Aristotle, Cicero, Augustine, Ramus, Vico, Spencer, I. A. Richards, Kenneth Burke, Wayne Booth, Jacques Derrida, and Stanley Fish. We will explore the roots of rhetoric in Athenian political culture, trace its development through Roman law and medieval religion and literature, and consider some of its modern and postmodern varieties. Along the way, we will see the centrality in Western thought of the study and practice of persuasive speech and writing, and its relationship to politics, science, history, literature, and more.

Required Reading: Readings will be taken from Bizzell and Herzberg’s The Rhetorical Tradition.

First Three Texts/Authors to be Studied: Bizzell and Hertzberg, “General Introduction,” Plato, Aristotle

Method of Instruction: Lecture/discussion.

Method of Evaluation: Mid-term test 25%; final essay 35%; three short analyses, 30% (10% each); Participation 10%

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Course Title: The Canadian Short Story

Course Code: ENG215H5S

Instructor:  Daniela Janes

Course Description: This course examines the development of the short story in Canada from the nineteenth century to the present. We will explore the formal features of the short story and its critical contexts as we move through nearly two hundred years of Canadian short fiction. Readings will cover a range of styles and genres, including the detective tale, animal story, humorous sketch, local colour narrative, realist short story, First Nations orature, and the various formal experimentations of the twentieth century. Through our readings of canonical and non-canonical writers, we will chart the shifting themes and techniques of the short story form in Canada.

Required Reading: Readings will be drawn from two anthologies: Early Canadian Stories: Short Stories in English before World War I (ed. Misao Dean) and The New Oxford Book of Canadian Short Stories in English (ed. Atwood and Weaver).

First Three Texts/Authors to be Studied: Moodie, Johnson, Scott (Dean).

Method of Instruction: Lecture and discussion.

Method of Evaluation: in-class exercises (5 %), two tests (45%), short assignment (5%), essay (35%), informed participation (10%).

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Course Title: Children’s Literature

Course Code: ENG234H5S

Instructor: Siobhan O’Flynn

Course Description: The stories we hear as children form the basis for our evolving understanding of literature and most broadly, of human interrelationships. We will consider key aspects such as the classic themes of maturation and escape, the construction and performance of gender, the significance of animal protagonists, and the often didactic function of children’s literature. We will also attend to the importance of historical and cultural contexts and the presence of “adult” concerns filtered (or not) through the presumably more limited perspective of children’s fiction and poetry.

Required Reading (a number of texts from the following): B. Potter, The Tale of Peter Rabbit; C. Perrault, Fairy Tales (texts online); Selections from The Brothers Grimm Fairy Tales; The Thousand and One Nights (various tales); L. Carroll, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland; P. Pullman, The Golden Compass; A. Milne, Winnie the Pooh; S. Rushdie, Haroun and the Sea of Stories; M.T. Anderson, Feed; Suzanne Collins, The Hunger Games; iPad book adaptations TBA (demoed in class).

Films: Gaiman, Mirror Mask; Studio Ghibli film, My Neighbour Totoro/Spirited Away

First Three Texts/Authors to be Studied: Perrault, Grimm, Carroll

Method of Instruction: Lecture, class discussion, and in-class exercises

Method of Evaluation: short essay, long essay, in-class presentation, final exam.

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Course Title: Detective Fiction

Course Code: ENG236H5F

Instructor: Mark Crimmins

Course Description: After a close inspection of three seminal modern detective stories by Poe and a rigorous examination of The Hound of the Baskervilles, we will turn our attention to a series of detective novels which reinvent or reanimate the detective genre: Hammett’s timeless classic of hard-boiled fiction, set in Sam Spade’s San Francisco; Nobel Prize winner Mario Vargas Llosa’s venture in the genre; Henning Mankell’s Wallander stories in The Pyramid; and a marvellously creative postmodern detective tale by Mark Haddon. As an alternate text for those who would like to replace one of the required texts with a much longer and more complex narrative, students will have the option of reading and writing on Stieg Larsson’s Lisbeth Salander as she appears in the first volume of his Millennium Trilogy. We will also view selections from Kinji Fukusaku’s 1968 cult classic film, Black Lizard, which gives—via Edogawa Ranpo, the ‘Japanese Poe’ and inventor of Japan’s No. 1 detective, Akechi—a name to one of the most legendary imprints in detective fiction history. We will study a selection of other filmic representations of detectives from cinema history.

Required Reading: Poe: “The Murders in the Rue Morgue,” “The Purloined Letter,” and “The Mystery of Marie Roget”; Doyle: The Hound of the Baskervilles; Dashiell Hammett: The Maltese Falcon; Mario Vargas Llosa: Who Killed Palomino Molero? Henning Mankell: The Pyramid; Mark Haddon: The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time; Alternate optional text: Stieg Larsson: The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo.

Method of Instruction: Lecture and discussion

Method of Evaluation: Short Paper/Written Assignment: 10%; Long Paper: 30%; Test: 1: 25%; Test 2: 25%; Participation: 10%.

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Course Title: Science Fiction

Course Code: ENG237H5S

Instructor: Chris Koenig-Woodyard

Course Description: This course explores speculative fiction that invents or extrapolates an inner or outer cosmology from the physical, life, social, and human sciences. Typical subjects include AI, alternative histories, cyberpunk, evolution, future and dying worlds, genetics, space/time travel, strange species, theories of everything, utopias, and dystopias.

Required Reading:

  1. Richard Matheson, I am Legend.
  2. Austin Grossman, Soon I will be Invincible.
  3. Other novels and texts tba

First Three Texts/Authors to be Studied: Matheson, I am Legend;

Method of Instruction: Lecture; Discussion

Method of Evaluation: Essay, Test and Exam

  1. 30% In Class Test (short essay; short answer)
  2. 30% Short Essay (six pages)
  3. 30% Final Exam (short essays; short answers)
  4. 10% Informed Course Contribution

Website: Portal

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Course Title: Critical Approaches to Literature

Course Code: ENG280H5F

Instructor: Daniel Harney

Course Description: This course examines the development of literary criticism from the late nineteenth century to the contemporary moment. We will concern ourselves with exploring various approaches to reading, interpreting, and defining literature. Some of the questions we will ask include: What is literature? What is the relationship between literature and politics, technology, and the university? What does literature tell us about gender, ethnic and racial categories? What is at stake in considering different approaches to literature? The texts we read contain some of the most important ideas of Western intellectual history and have had an incalculable effect on modern political, aesthetic, and cultural life. That is, the ideas discussed in this course undergird many of the concepts you will be asked to master in future years both in university and beyond.

Required Reading: Leitch, Vincent. The Norton Anthology Of Theory And Criticism 2e. Norton, 2010.

First Three Texts/Authors to be Studied: Matthew Arnold, “The Function of Criticism at the Present Time” Henry James, “The Art of Fiction” T. S. Eliot, “Tradition and the Individual Talent”

Method of Instruction: Lecture/Group Discussion

Method of Evaluation: Essays/Final Exam

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Course Title: Jane Austen and her Contemporaries

Course Code: ENG323H5S

Instructor: Chris Koenig-Woodyard

Course Description: A study of selected novels (and fiction) by Austen and her contemporaries as Lewis, Radcliffe, Godwin, Wollstonecraft, Wordsworth, Edgeworth, Scott, and Shelley, in the context of the complex literary, social, and political relationships of that time.

Required Reading: (available at the UTM bookstore)
Austen, Northanger Abbey
Austen, Pride and Prejudice
Austen, Emma
Lewis, The Monk
Parsons, The Castle of Wolfenbach
(note the Austen novels are all broadview editions, with critical material in the appendixes that is an important part of the course).

First Three Texts/Authors to be Studied: Lewis, The Monk; Austen, Northanger Abbey

Method of Instruction: Lecture and Discussion

Method of Evaluation: Essay, Test and Exam

  1. 30% In Class Test (short essay; short answer)
  2. 30% Short Essay (six pages)
  3. 30% Final Exam (short essays; short answers)
  4. 10% Informed Course Contribution


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Course Title: Shakespeare’s Villains

Course Code: ENG336H5F

Instructor: Tony Antoniades

Course Description: We love to watch bad people do bad things to good people, at least on stage, where moral failures can be dramatic sensations. Evil sincerity is more dramatically appealing than bland goodness. Why is this the case, and what might it reveal about our experience with the theatre, or indeed, about human nature? This course addresses these questions in the context of the Early Modern period, through an examination of a rogue’s gallery of some of William Shakespeare`s most delightfully horrible stage villains. Stopping off with some of his predecessors and contemporaries to provide a context for Shakespeare`s choices, and spanning the length of his career and the breadth of his generic interests, we will investigate the dramatic, social, cultural, and historical traditions from which Shakespeare drew his villains, and the ways in which his characters and their fates comment upon these sources. Plays will include Mankynde, The Jew of Malta, The Merchant of Venice, Richard III, Measure for Measure, and Othello. Get ready to root for the bad guy.

Required Reading: Mankynde (Anon – provided by instructor), The Jew of Malta (Marlowe), The Merchant of Venice, Richard III, Measure for Measure, Othello (all by Shakespeare).

First Three Texts/Authors to be Studied: Mankynde, The Jew of Malta, The Merchant of Venice

Method of Instruction: Lecture, class discussion, group work

Method of Evaluation: Final Paper, Short Paper, Reflections

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Course Title: Canadian Drama

Course number: ENG352H5S

Instructor: Daniela Janes

Course Description: In this course we will read a selection of Canadian drama across its history, paying attention to the material conditions of production as well as formal developments and stylistic innovations. Students will be exposed to a variety of forms, including history, tragedy, satire, drama and comedy, and will be given a sense of the shape and development of Canadian theatre.

Required Reading: Students will read a variety of plays, ranging from one-act plays to more substantial works. The course reader covers nineteenth- and twentieth-century plays, including works by Nicholas Flood Davin, Sarah Anne Curzon, Merrill Denison, Herman Voaden, Len Peterson, and Lister Sinclair. Other readings will be drawn from Jerry Wasserman, ed., Modern Canadian Plays, Vol. 1 (5th Edition). Playwrights to be studied include George Ryga, Michel Tremblay, David French, John Gray, Sharon Pollock, Ann-Marie MacDonald and Tomson Highway.

First Three Texts: Plays by Davin, Curzon, Denison (course reader).

Method of Instruction: Lecture and discussion.

Method of Evaluation: response paper (10%), essay (35%), two tests (45%), participation (10%).

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Course Title: Contemporary American Fiction

Course Code: ENG365H5F

Instructor: Mark Crimmins

Course Description: This course will examine a plethora of fictions by a wide range of contemporary American authors. Our readings will include two novels, one short story collection, and an anthology of short stories featuring work by many of Contemporary American Fiction’s most widely admired short story writers. For our longer selections we will read Maxine Hong Kinsgston’s postmodern adaptation of one of the four great classical Chinese novels, Tripmaster Monkey; and David Foster Wallace’s arcane, formidable, and brilliant reinventions of fictional form in his collection, Oblivion. We will also examine some flash fictions by authors who excel in this from, including Donald Barthelme, Jamaica Kincaid, Ann Beattie, Rick Moody, David Foster Wallace, Sandra Cisneros, and Lydia Davis. Our short story selections will include innovative and influential fictions by Jhumpa Lahiri, Sherman Alexie, Percival Everett, Raymond Carver, Annie Proulx, Ursula LeGuin, Lorrie Moore, and T. C. Boyle, and Ann Spence.

Required Reading: Shreve and Nguyen: 30/30: Thirty Stories From the Last Thirty Years; Maxine Hong Kingston: Tripmaster Monkey; David Foster Wallace: Oblivion.

First Three Texts/Authors to be Studied: Kincaid: “Girl”; Moody: “Boys”; Cisneros: “The House on Mango Street.”

Method of Instruction: Lecture and discussion

Method of Evaluation: Short Paper/Written Assignment: 10%; Long Paper: 30%; Test 1: 25%; Test 2: 25%; Participation: 10%.

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Course Title: The Digby Plays

Course Code: ENG462H5F

Instructor: Chester N. Scoville

Course Description: This course will conduct an intensive study of the four late medieval plays collected in the manuscript Bodleian MS Digby 133: The Conversion of Saint Paul, Mary Magdalene, The Killing of the Children, and Wisdom – which are among the most striking and unusual examples of late medieval drama. Because their history and provenance were long a puzzle to modern scholars, they have often been the site of confusion within the critical tradition of early drama. Our discussions will consider these texts both as examples of late medieval culture and as examples of how that culture has been re-imagined and interpreted in more recent eras, sometimes with peculiar results.

This course will therefore consider the Digby Plays from multiple angles: literary, dramaturgical, historical and book-historical, among others. Our discussions will be grounded in a focused understanding of the dramatic and religious culture of late medieval East Anglia, as well as in a more general study of the techniques, history, and literary historiography of early English drama. We will survey the critical and editorial work of the past century and a half of scholarship regarding them, and consider how modern performance experience has changed our view of them. Above all, we will explore the ways in which these odd and somewhat obscure plays can illuminate our understanding of their contexts -- original and recent.

Required Reading: We will use as our primary text John C. Coldewey's Early English Drama: An Anthology, which, despite its title, is basically an edition of the Digby Plays with a few extras thrown in. The texts in Coldewey are in late Middle English with original spelling, so that we will be able to consider the language of the plays in detail.

Additionally, we will be reading selected criticism of and scholarship on the plays, which I will make available on reserve in the UTM Library and as a short course pack.

Method of Instruction: Seminar discussion including student presentations.

Method of Evaluation: All students are expected to attend and participate in all meetings of the course. Each student will give a fifteen-minute presentation on some topic relevant to that class's discussion; specific topics will be assigned weekly. A formal version of the presentation will be handed in as a short essay. There will also be one final research paper with annotated bibliography.

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