2020 Summer English Courses

NOTES: a) Instructor's course descriptions are subject to change. b) If a schedule, description or prerequisite below varies from the The Registrar's Timetable the Registrar's Timetable shall prevail. c) R is for Thursday.

FIRST YEAR: ENG100H5F/ENG100H5S | ENG101H5S SECOND YEAR: ENG202H5F | ENG203H5S | ENG213H5F | ENG279H5F | ENG289H5S | THIRD YEAR: ENG316H5F | ENG316H5S | ENG327H5Y | ENG371H5F


Course Title: Effective Writing

Course Code: ENG100H5F | M/W 9-12 and ENG100H5S | T/F 1-4

Instructor(s): (F) Siobhan O'Flynn | (S) TBA

This course provides practical tools for writing in university and beyond. Students will gain experience in generating ideas, clarifying insights, structuring arguments, composing paragraphs and sentences, critiquing and revising their writing, and communicating effectively to diverse audiences. This course does not count toward any English program.

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Course Title: How to Read Critically

Course Code: ENG101H5S | T/F 9-11 + Tutorials T/F 11-12 or T/F 1-2

Instructor: Thomas Laughlin

This foundational course serves as an introduction to a wide range and variety of methods for literary and textual analysis, giving students a set of interpretive tools they can use to analyze texts in English classes and beyond. Emphasis will be on developing close, attentive reading skills as ways of thinking not just about, but through texts, and on deploying these skills effectively in essays and discussions. The class will draw on literary works from a variety of countries, centuries, genres, and media. We recommend that students considering a Specialist, Major, or Minor in English take this course.

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Course Title: British Literature in the World I: Medieval to 18th-Century

Course Code: ENG202H5F | M/W 9-11 + Tutorials M/W 11-12 or M/W 1-2

Instructor: James Sargan

This course serves as an introduction to influential texts that have shaped British literary history from Beowulf and Chaucer to Shakespeare, from Milton and Behn to Burney. Students will focus on questions such as the range and evolution of poetic forms, the development of the theatre and the novel, and the emergence of women writers. The course will encourage students to think about the study of English literatures in relationship to history, including the history of world literatures.

Exclusion: ENG202Y5

Prerequisites: Open to students who have successfully completed at least 4.0 full credits. Students who do not meet the prerequisite but are enrolled in any 100-level ENG or DRE course (except ENG100H5) may petition the department in writing for approval to take the course. See the guidelines for written petitions on the department website.

Detailed Description by Instructor

Course Description: In this course we survey nearly a millennium of British literary history. On our journey we will encounter some of British literatures major writers, as well as some of its anonymous or forgotten ones. We will consider some major formal and generic movements within their historical and cultural perspective and situate these movements within the transnational pre-modern world. By taking a historicist perspective to this literature we discover both the interconnectedness and the contingency of literature in the pre-Modern world. This course counts towards the English Major. It builds upon the skills you honed in your 100-series courses, and lays the foundations for more advanced study of specific periods and authors in the coming years.

Selected Major Readings: The course covers many major works of the period either directly or tangentially. In an effort to allow for the condensed summer session and to acknowledge the disruption caused by COVID-19 we will largely stick to short works and extracts including, the Old English elegies, Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, John Donne, Margaret Cavendish, Jonathan Swift, Lady Mary Wortley Montagu. All readings will be available online or distributed as pdfs.

First Three Texts/Authors to be Studied:
Old English Elegies (The Wanderer, The Wife’s Lament, Wulf and Eadwacer)
Dream of the Rood
The Wonders of the East (extracts) and Exeter Book Riddles (extracts)

Method of Instruction:
In this course we recognise that our current learning situations are not ideal. To mitigate all elements of the course will be available asynchronously online. However, learning is a social endeavour and communal learning remains an important part of the course: tutorial discussions, “in class” activities will remain an important part of this. We will use the course Quercus site as our main hub for course activity, but we will also make use of other resources including Zoom, Slack, and shared document files. Should it be appropriate to revisit or add to these modes as the semester progresses we shall do so.

Method of Evaluation:
Lecture Participation: 10%
You must participate in class activities. These will be available asynchronously online.
Tutorial discussion board responses: 15%
Your contributions to these discussions will be assessed for their quality and the manner in which they respond to others.
Portfolio of close readings:
3x 3 page close reading exercise: 15% each
Extended essay (5pp): 30%

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Course Title: British Literature in the World II: Romantic to Contemporary

Course Code: ENG203H5S | T/R 11-1 + Tutorials T/R 1-2 or T/R 3-4

Instructor: Chris Koenig-Woodyard

An introduction to influential texts that have shaped British literary history from the Romantic period to the present, covering developments in poetry, drama, and prose, from William Wordsworth to Zadie Smith and beyond. The course will address topics such as revolution and war; the increasing diversity of poetic forms; the cultural dominance of the novel; romanticism, Victorianism, modernism, and postmodernism; feminism; colonialism and decolonization; the ethnic and cultural diversity of Anglophone literature in the twentieth and twenty-first centuries; literature and sexual identity; the AIDS epidemic; and technology and the digital age. The course will encourage students to think about the study of English literatures in relationship to history, including the history of world literatures.

Exclusion: ENG203Y5

Prerequisites: Open to students who have successfully completed at least 4.0 full credits. Students who do not meet the prerequisite but are enrolled in any 100-level ENG or DRE course (except ENG100H5) may petition the department in writing for approval to take the course. See the guidelines for written petitions on the department website.

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Course Title: The Short Story

Course Code: ENG213H5F | T/R 9-12

Instructor: Daniela Janes

This course explores shorter works of nineteenth- and twentieth-century writers. Special attention will be paid to formal and rhetorical concepts for the study of fiction as well as to issues such as narrative voice, allegory, irony, and the representation of temporality.

Prerequisites: Open to students who have successfully completed at least 4.0 full credits. Students who do not meet the prerequisite but are enrolled in any 100-level ENG or DRE course (except ENG100H5) may petition the department in writing for approval to take the course. See the guidelines for written petitions on the department website.

Detailed Description by Instructor

Course description: This course examines the development of the short story from the nineteenth century to the present. We will explore stories drawn from a range of national literatures, including several works that will be studied in translation. The goal of the course is to develop your knowledge of the literary short story by examining major writers, and to build a sense of historical and theoretical context. We will consider the short story in terms of the formal features of the genre, and will seek to define some of the essential characteristics of the short story as more than, simply, a story that is short.

Selected major readings: The recommended course text is The Norton Anthology of Short Fiction, Shorter 8th Edition which is available to be ordered online via the UTM Bookstore. Some of the authors that may be covered include Atwood, Baldwin, Carver, Chekhov, Chopin, Faulkner, Hawthorne, Hemingway, Joyce, Kafka, Kincaid, Le Guin, Mansfield, de Maupassant, Melville, Munro, Oates, Poe, and Woolf.

First three texts/authors to be studied: Hawthorne, “Young Goodman Brown”; Poe, “The Fall of the House of Usher”; Melville, “Bartleby, the Scrivener.”

Method of instruction: This class will be conducted fully online, in a combination of asynchronous and synchronous modes. Summer courses typically have a demanding pace, and students should anticipate investing time in preparing readings, engaging with course material independently and collaboratively, contributing to online discussion, and completing several substantial writing projects.

Method of evaluation: written projects, online discussion, and engaged participation.

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Course Title: Video Games

Course Code: ENG279H5F | M/W 1-4

Instructor: Siobhan O'Flynn

What is the literary history of video games? This course considers how some novels and plays work like games; how games have evolved complex and often non-verbal means of conveying narratives; and whether narrative in fiction, theatre, and film can or should be a model for storytelling in the rule-bound, interactive worlds of video games.

Prerequisites: Open to students who have successfully completed at least 4.0 full credits. Students who do not meet the prerequisite but are enrolled in any 100-level ENG or DRE course (except ENG100H5) may petition the department in writing for approval to take the course. See the guidelines for written petitions on the department website.

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Course Title: Creative Writing

Course Code: ENG289H5S | M/W 11-1 + Tutorials: M/W 1-2 or M/W 3-4

Instructor: Michael Raby

Students will engage in a variety of creative exercises, conducted across a range of different genres of literary writing.

Prerequisites: Open to students who have successfully completed at least 4.0 full credits. Students who do not meet the prerequisite but are enrolled in any 100-level ENG or DRE course (except ENG100H5) may petition the department in writing for approval to take the course. See the guidelines for written petitions on the department website.

Course description: This course provides an overview of the creative writing process, with a special focus on short fiction and creative non-fiction. Assigned readings and lectures will familiarize students with various aspects of literary craft, such as point of view, plot, and characterization. Frequent exercises—done both in-class and at home—will allow students to experiment with using these elements in their own practice. Becoming a good writer entails becoming a good reader, including of one’s own work; to this end, students will also be required to submit short critical reflections. Tutorials are an important part of the course. In tutorials, students will respond to the readings and lectures, as well as share in-progress and completed writing. The course culminates in a final creative project: a piece of short fiction that is developed from initial sketch through to final revision.

Selected major readings:
A selection of short fiction and creative non-fiction drawn from a variety of genres. We will read newly-emerging authors, as well as canonical voices. Each week, students will also be given a thematically-linked collection of excerpts drawn from creative writing “how to” books, manifestos, artist interviews and other sources.

There are no textbooks to purchase; all readings will be available via links or as PDFs on Quercus.

First three texts / authors to be studied:
Ted Hughes, Lydia Davis, George Saunders

Method of instruction:
Lecture, discussion, in-class exercises, tutorials

Method of evaluation:
Writing exercises, critical reflections, tutorial participation, short creative work (flash fiction), longer creative work (short story)

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Course Title: Special Topic in Modern and Contemporary Literature: Marjorie Liu: Monsters and Comics

Course Code: ENG316H5F | T/R 1-4

Instructor: Chris Koenig-Woodyard

A concentrated study of one aspect of modern or contemporary literature or literary culture, such as a particular subgenre or author, specific theme, or the application of a particular critical approach.

Prerequisite: 1.0 credit in ENG and 3.0 additional credits.

Detailed Description by Instructor

Before launching her own comic, Monstress, with illustrator Sana Takeda in November 2015, writer Marjorie Liu had penned over 80 comics that cover an impressive range of canonical characters and storylines in the Marvel-verse: NYX (2008-2009), Black Widow (2010), Dark Wolverine (2009-10), Daken: Dark Wolverine (2010-11), X-23 (2010-12), and Astonishing X-Men (2012-13). Liu describes her experience as an Asian-American female author working in a predominantly male industry (and in a comic universe comprised of mostly male characters) as one that was estranging:

For years I was the only woman on the X-Men panel at San Diego Comic Con or the only woman at the X-Men retreat. And for years I was the only woman of color, the only person of color, at these gatherings. I did fine, but that’s not the point. Why didn’t that ever strike anyone as odd or problematic?

Well, here’s the deal: being a woman or person of color in a space dominated by white men is like wearing a Klingon cloaking shield: as long as you don’t need to open fire, no one is going to notice whether you’re there or not. No one at these Marvel retreats noticed the absence of women because even the possibility of their participation didn’t exist. ‘Women can’t write superheroes,’ I was told by a top dude in the company.

Liu’s remarks stand at the heart of our course as we concentrate our reading of Liu’s and Takeda’s series Monstress through a critical lens focused on three primary areas: race, gender, and genre (alternative history, comic books, dark fantasy, gothic, and science fiction). Liu’s own sense of the comic book format—that it is a “useful tool of estrangement,” a form for exploring “themes about race, themes about colonialism, slavery, misogyny, patriarchy”—will guide our reading through Monstress as Liu and Takeda compose a politically-charged “postwar superhero comic,” to borrow Ramzi Fawaz’s phrase in The New Mutants: Superheroes and the Radical Imagination of American Comics (2016).

SCHEDULING NOTE: This course will be taught and administered online exclusively—so we will not meet on campus for class meetings or office hours. I will post course materials on Quercus, host group discussions and office hours through Zoom, and will use other apps and platforms (such as whiteboard, or google docs) to support online instruction.

REQUIRED READING and TEXTS/AUTHORS TO BE STUDIED (in this order):

ONLINE: Available at https://imagecomics.com/ Please buy the following comics online in electronic form. Save PDF copies of these files.

We are reading the first four trade paperback volumes of Monstress

1. Liu and Takeda, Monstress, Volume One: Awakening [$9.99 US]
https://imagecomics.com/comics/releases/monstress-vol-1-tp
2. Liu and Takeda, Monstress, Volume Two: Blood [$16.99 US]
https://imagecomics.com/comics/releases/monstress-vol-2-tp
3. Liu and Takeda, Monstress, Volume Three: Haven [$16.99 US]
https://imagecomics.com/comics/releases/monstress-vol-3-tp
4. Liu and Takeda, Monstress, Volume Four: The Chosen [$16.99 US]
https://imagecomics.com/comics/releases/monstress-vol-4-tp

QUERCUS (the following will be posted online on our course page)
Liu, Marjorie, various comics (in alphabetical order): Astonishing X-Men, Daken: Dark Wolverine, NYX, Wolverine, X-23
Ramzi Fawaz, The New Mutants: Superheroes and the Radical Imagination of American Comics (2016). [Excerpts]
Robinson, Lillian S. Wonder Woman: Feminisms and Superheroes. New York: Routledge, 2004. [Excerpts]
Scott, Anna Beatrice. “Superpower vs Supernatural: Black Superheroes and the Quest for a Mutant Reality” journal of visual culture 5.3 (2006): 295–314.
Schüssler Fiorenza, Elisabeth. But She Said: Feminist Practices of Biblical Interpretation. Boston: Beacon Press, 1992
Stuller Jennifer K., Ink-Stained Amazons and Cinematic Warriors: Superwomen in Modern Mythology. London: Bloomsbury, 2010).
Williams, Teresa Kay. “Race-ing and being raced: the critical interrogation of ‘passing’.” ‘Mixed Race’ Studies: A Reader. Ed. Jayne O. Ifekwunigwe. London: Routledge, 2004. 166-70.

Method of Instruction: Lecture and Discussion

Method of Evaluation: Essays, Test, and Participation

WEBSITE: Quercus
 

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Course Title: Special Topic in Modern and Contemporary Literature: Virginia Woolf and Illness

Course Code: ENG316H5S | M/W 1-4

Instructor: Daniela Janes

A concentrated study of one aspect of modern or contemporary literature or literary culture, such as a particular subgenre or author, specific theme, or the application of a particular critical approach.

Prerequisite: 1.0 credit in ENG and 3.0 additional credits.

Detailed Description by Instructor

Course description: This class will undertake a reading of at least two novels and an assortment of shorter works to investigate questions related to the literary representation of illness, mortality, and the body. As we read Woolf’s work in the context of our own historical moment living through a global pandemic, we will consider the way Woolf writes about illness in the aftermath of the 1918-19 influenza pandemic. Elizabeth Outka’s recent monograph, Viral Modernism (2019), invites us to consider what she calls “the pandemic’s spectral presence” and to take note of “the changes it produced on the streets, in domestic spaces, within families, and in the body.” Through our reading and analysis of Woolf’s work, this course will offer students new ways to think about the representation of illness, the body, the mind, the experience of time, and the “spectral presence” of the influenza pandemic in modernist literature.

Selected major readings: Mrs. Dalloway, To the Lighthouse, and selected shorter works.

First three texts/authors to be studied: TBA

Method of instruction: Please note that this class may be conducted fully online, in a combination of asynchronous and synchronous modes. Summer courses typically have a demanding pace, and students should anticipate investing time in preparing readings, engaging with course material independently and collaboratively, contributing to online discussion, and completing several substantial writing projects.

Method of evaluation: written projects, online discussion, and engaged participation.

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Course Title: Blame Chaucer

Course Code: ENG327H5Y | R 1-4

Instructor: Michael Raby

This course takes a close look at some of the bawdy, irreverent, and even dangerous texts written in fourteenth-century England by Geoffrey Chaucer. As he recounts erotic dreams, tells the story of a faithless woman in Troilus and Criseyde, and narrates tales told on a riotous, drunken pilgrimage in The Canterbury Tales, Chaucer repeatedly tells his readers not to blame him for what he writes. Students in this course will ask: who is to blame, if not the author himself?

Prerequisite: 1.0 credit in ENG and 3.0 additional credits.

Course description:
Chaucer is famously known as the “father of English literature.” He introduced plots and characters into English that would be repurposed by later authors such as Shakespeare. More importantly, he expanded the horizons of English poetry with bold experiments in form and genre. He had the ability to create vivid, natural speech while working within strict constraints of rhyme and metre. Reading Chaucer we are confronted by a multiplicity of voices; among them, the beautiful Criseyde caught between her desire and the precariousness of a woman’s position in ancient Troy; her uncle Pandarus, a manipulative go-between who has advice—wanted or not—for any occasion; the Miller, who, while completely plastered, tells an elaborate joke that ends with one of the most memorable punchlines of all time; and, of course, the wonderfully over-the-top Wife of Bath, who intertwines biblical interpretation with descriptions of her sex life.

Standing behind all of these figures is Chaucer himself. Chaucer’s authorial voice playfully raises questions about the relationship between art and life: How can stories be used to manipulate and control? What are the consoling powers of literature? To what extent can we separate the work from the artist? We will pay special attention to this last question, which, as the news cycle reminds us, remains as timely as ever. Chaucer’s narrative avatars repeatedly disavow responsibility for both what they are saying and how they are saying it. What do these moments reveal about authorial responsibility, the concept of intention more generally, and the ways in which Chaucer uses (and perhaps misuses) his sources? Towards the end of the course we will explore how recent artists have “blamed Chaucer,” that is, how they have adapted his work into various forms ranging from hip hop to graphic novels.

This course will focus on Chaucer’s two major works: Troilus and Criseyde and selections from The Canterbury Tales. Lectures and supplementary reading will help to place these works in their historical context—a fourteenth-century England that, in the wake of the devastating Black Death pandemic, was seized by economic turmoil and religious dispute. Students will have the opportunity to engage closely with the text by completing frequent close reading assignments; by the end of the course, they will be able to identify and analyze a number of formal techniques and rhetorical patterns, training that can be usefully applied to the study of poetry from later periods. While we will be reading Chaucer in the original Middle English, the editions that we are using are heavily glossed and very much designed for beginner readers; I will also provide some instruction in Middle English at the outset of the course.

Selected major readings:
Chaucer, Geoffrey. Troilus and Criseyde, edited by James Dean and Harriet Spiegel, Broadview, 2016.

Chaucer, Geoffrey. The Canterbury Tales, edited by Robert Boenig and Andrew Taylor, 2nd ed., Broadview, 2012.

Both of these texts are available as ebooks that can be purchased and downloaded from the Broadview Press website (http://broadviewpress.com).

Important note #1: If you already own The Broadview Anthology of British Literature, Concise Edition, Vol. A, 3rd ed. or The Broadview Anthology of British Literature: The Medieval Period, 3rd ed., you do not need to purchase the edition of The Canterbury Tales listed above. These anthologies contain all of the selections from The Canterbury Tales that we will be reading.

Important note #2: There are several different editions of Troilus and Criseyde and The Canterbury Tales available. However, for this class, it is important that you use the Broadview editions specified above. There are two reasons why: first, these editions are geared toward beginner readers and thus are heavily glossed; second, you will find it easier to follow along if you are using the same edition as I am.

Method of instruction:
Online lecture, group discussion

Method of evaluation:
Participation, quizzes, paragraph responses, close reading exercises, essay, creative project

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Course Title: Special Topic in World Literatures: Theatres of Resistance

Course Code: ENG371H5F | W/F 1-4

Instructor: Natasha Vashisht

A concentrated study of one aspect of postcolonial literature or literary culture, such as a particular genre, author, period, regional or national context, or theme, or the application of a particular critical approach.

Prerequisite: 1.0 credits in ENG and 3.0 additional credits.

Detailed Description by Instructor

This course explores the fundamental connections between theatre as a medium of cultural intervention and the revolutionary dramatic aesthetics of representative political playwrights of the post-war decades. Bridging drama of the global south and north, these dramatists will be studied in the milieu of their politico-cultural and economic history focusing particularly on how they adapt that context to articulate protest, and cultivate resistance through a form of theatre that voices the struggle of the marginalized – tribals, workers, peasants, robbers and even madmen. A study of their searing commitment towards the cause of the subaltern through techniques of alienation, humour, class, caste and folklore should help you respond to few vital questions: More than direct action against normative categories, is revolutionary theatre a more effective form of non-violent citizen action? Can it transform a spectator into a voter, the emotions generated by spectacle into an ultimate means of affecting political ideology? Alternately, can theatres of resistance sustain themselves as active channels of counter information? Kateb Yacine, Ngugi and Osofisan’s scourging of disorderly post-colonial states ravaged by classist and capitalist conflict, Brecht, Wesker and Fo’s staunch vindication of proletariat issues, Mahashweta Devi, Habib Tanvir and WS Rendra’s fearless trysts with the subaltern and many more such concerns will be tabled and critically analyzed as radical attempts to subvert status quo. In doing so, I hope that we can appreciate the relevance of theatre as a humane learning tool of cultural awareness, and perhaps develop a critical conscience where, in Brecht’s words, ‘One thinks feelings and one feels thoughtfully.’

Selected major readings:
1. Brecht, Caucasian Chalk Circle
2. Arnold Wesker, Roots
3. Dario Fo, Accidental Death of an Anarchist
4. Ngugi Wa Thiong’o and Mugo, The Trial of Dedan Kimathi
5. Femi Osofisan, Once Upon Four Robbers
6. Kateb Yacine, Intelligence Powder
7. Mahasweta Devi, Aajir
8. Habib Tanvir, Charandas Chor
9. WS Rendra, The Struggle of the Naga Tribe

First three texts / authors to be studied:
1. Bertolt Brecht, Caucasian Chalk Circle
2. Arnold Wesker, Roots
3. Dario Fo, Accidental Death of an Anarchist
 

Method of instruction: Lectures, class discussions, weekly responses.

Method of evaluation:
Class participation and attendance - 20 marks
Early-term reading response - 20 marks
Mid-term group presentations (Creative project) - 30 marks
End-term final essay - 30 marks
 

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