Fall 2016 Courses: Graduate Seminars


ENG 5513/5933: Topics in British Literature: Frankenstein; Cross-Cultural Issues: Frankenstein

Instructor: Jeanne C. Reesman
Class Time: Tuesdays 6:00p.m. - 8:45p.m.

Course Description
Class discussion, reports, and lectures will promote intensive examination and discussion of both the 1818 and 1831 versions of the novel, especially on questions of gender and the domestic life. We will study its presence in literary and popular culture, beginning with stage and fictional productions from the 19th through 21st centuries, and film, television, and newer media from the 20th century on. Frankenstein’s dramatic range of cultural subject-matter and depth of meaning are balanced by its essential elasticity; it has been called the first truly modern myth. As it has become increasingly commodified by modern consumer cultures, we will explore whether its original revolutionary spirit has become obscured, but also how its continuing transformations attest to its essential nature as a political and cultural critique, both external and internal, like the bodily split from the mind.

Required Texts

  • Dick, Philip K., Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?
  • Hitchcock, Susan Tyler, Frankenstein: A Cultural History
  • Ishiguro, Kazuo, Never Let Me Go
  • Mellor, Anne, Mary Shelley: Her Life, Her Fiction, Her Monsters
  • Morton, Timothy ed., Routledge Source Book on Mary Shelley's Frankenstein
  • Shelley, Mary Wolsteonecraft, Frankenstein: The 1818 Text, Contexts, Nineteenth-Century Responses, Modern Criticism (Norton Critical Edition)
  • Shelley, Mary Wolstonecraft, Frankenstein (1831 edition)
  • Stevenson, Robert Louis, The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, Oxford World's Classics

ENG 5763: Latina/o Literature

Instructor: Jackie Cuevas
Class Time: Wednesdays 6:00p.m. - 8:45p.m.

Course Description
In this seminar on Comparative Latina/o Literatures, we will read texts in a variety of genres (fiction, poetry, drama) and situate them within their varied literary, geographic, and historical contexts, ranging from the nineteenth to the twenty-first century. Authors may include María Amparo Ruiz de Burton, José Martí, Salvador Plascencia, Justin Torres, Julia Alvarez, Virginia Grise, and others.


English 5943.001: Major English Authors: Chaucer

Instructor: Kimberly Fonzo
Class Time: Thurdays 6:00p.m. - 8:45p.m.

Course Description
This seminar is designed to provide students with an overview of Geoffrey Chaucer’s major works including the Book of the Duchess, the Canterbury Tales, Parliament of Fowls, Troilus and Criseyde, and the House of Fame. We will also examine some of Chaucer’s most influential sources, especially the works of Giovanni Boccaccio, in order to understand how Chaucer interacted with the literary traditions of his time. In order to introduce you to a variety of modes of research and to accommodate your individual interests, the course requires you to hand in a series of three short, flexible assignments throughout the term in addition to your final paper. Since keeping track of narrative details can be difficult to students new to Middle English, I suggest that you read translations first carefully, then work your way through the more compelling passages for close reading in the original Middle English. All written assignments and in-class discussions must refer to the Middle English text.

Required Text

  • Benson, Lerry D. ed., The Riverside Chaucer, 3rd edition, 1986.


ENG 6063/7063: Black Feminist Sexualities, 1860 to the Present

Instructor: Joycelyn Moody
Class Time: Mondays 6:00p.m. - 8:45p.m.

Course Description This seminar examines sex-positive discourses emerging during the second decade of the twenty-first century alongside discussions of sexualized stereotypes of African American women and ways that black feminisms have responded to them since the middle of the nineteenth century. We will contemplate how black feminists today confront and debunk harmful stereotypes often while articulating diverse ways they formulate and express their own definitions of black womanhood, black motherhood, black sexual identities, and black femaleness.

Required Texts

  • James, Stanlie M., Frances Smith Foster, and Beverly Guy-Sheftall Still Brave: The Evolution of Black Women's Studies
  • Willis, Deborah, Posing Beauty: African American Images From the 1890s to the Present
  • Zackodnik, Teresa C., "We Must Be Up and Doing": A Reader in Early African American Feminisms
  • Melancon, Trimiko, and Joanne M. Braxton, Black Female Sexualities
  • Cox, Aimee Meredith, Shapeshifters: Black Girls and the Choreography of Citizenship
  • Bay, Mia, et al., eds., Toward an Intellectual History of Black Women
  • McCaskill, Barbara, ed., Running a Thousand Miles for Freedom: The Escape of William and Ellen Craft

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