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ENGLISH 94Q: The Future is Feminine (FEMGEN 94Q)

Gender is one of the great social issues of our time. What does it mean to be female or feminine? How has femininity been defined, performed, punished, or celebrated? Writers are some of our most serious and eloquent investigators of these questions, and in this class we'll read many of our greatest writers on the subject of femininity, as embodied by both men and women, children and adults, protagonists and antagonists. From Virginia Woolf to Ernest Hemingway, from Beloved to Gone Girl (and even "RuPaul's Drag Race"), we'll ask how the feminine is rendered and contested. We'll do so in order to develop a history and a vocabulary of femininity so that we may, in this important time, write our own way in to the conversation. This is first and foremost a creative writing class, and our goals will be to consider in our own work the importance of the feminine across the entire spectrum of gender, sex, and identity. We will also study how we write about femininity, using other writers as mo more »
Gender is one of the great social issues of our time. What does it mean to be female or feminine? How has femininity been defined, performed, punished, or celebrated? Writers are some of our most serious and eloquent investigators of these questions, and in this class we'll read many of our greatest writers on the subject of femininity, as embodied by both men and women, children and adults, protagonists and antagonists. From Virginia Woolf to Ernest Hemingway, from Beloved to Gone Girl (and even "RuPaul's Drag Race"), we'll ask how the feminine is rendered and contested. We'll do so in order to develop a history and a vocabulary of femininity so that we may, in this important time, write our own way in to the conversation. This is first and foremost a creative writing class, and our goals will be to consider in our own work the importance of the feminine across the entire spectrum of gender, sex, and identity. We will also study how we write about femininity, using other writers as models and inspiration. As we engage with these other writers, we will think broadly and bravely, and explore the expressive opportunities inherent in writing. We will explore our own creative practices through readings, prompted exercises, improv, games, collaboration, workshop, and revision, all with an eye toward writing the feminine future.
Terms: Win | Units: 3 | UG Reqs: WAY-A-II, WAY-CE
Instructors: Pufahl, S. (PI)

ENGLISH 104: The Art of the Book: Renaissance to Modernism

W.B. Yeats once sought inspiration in "the foul rag and bone shop of the heart," a place where litter and scraps were recycled into the paper that held his poems. In this course, we will reconsider the literary text as a physical object, tracing how writers integrate its physical characteristics into their poetry and prose during eras of increasing mechanization. How do these texts ask us to ¿read¿ the printed page? When and why do we ignore it? How does literature engage our senses and call attention to itself? This course will include meetings in Stanford Special collections to examine original editions of our texts. Readings include works by William Shakespeare, Daniel Defoe, Laurence Sterne, William Blake, William Morris, W.B. Yeats, and Gertrude Stein.
Last offered: Spring 2019 | UG Reqs: WAY-A-II

ENGLISH 108: Disability Literature (HUMBIO 177)

This course explores literary and filmic narratives about disability in the Global South. Authors including Edwidge Danticat, Bapsi Sidhwa, and Ricardo Padilla highlight the unique aesthetic potential of what Michael Davidson calls the defamiliar body and Ato Quayson describes as aesthetic nervousness. While engaging universal issues of disability stigma, they also emphasize the specific geopolitics of disability how people in the Global South face greater rates of impairment based on unequal exposure to embodied risk. The course particularly welcomes students with interests in fields of medicine, policy, or public health.
Last offered: Autumn 2018 | UG Reqs: WAY-A-II, WAY-ED

ENGLISH 110: The Indian Novel

When we imagine the exemplary global or postcolonial novel, we're likely to think of novels from India. But the current dominance of Indian Anglophone fiction was hardly the tryst with destiny it seems in retrospect. This course offers a perspective on the emergence of the Anglophone novel in India through a conversation with its linguistic and generic others works in the competing modes of short stories, poetry, and film. The course may include writings by Mulk Raj Anand, G.V. Desani, Anita Desai, and Arundhati Roy, as well as selections from the volume A History of the Indian Novel in English.
Last offered: Spring 2019 | UG Reqs: WAY-A-II, WAY-ED

ENGLISH 112A: Humanities Core: Great Books, Big Ideas -- Europe, Middle Ages and Renaissance (DLCL 12, HUMCORE 12)

This three-quarter sequence asks big questions of major texts in the European and American tradition. What is a good life? How should society be organized? Who belongs? How should honor, love, sin, and similar abstractions govern our actions? What duty do we owe to the past and future? The second quarter focuses on the transition from the Middle Ages to Modernity, Europe's re-acquaintance with classical antiquity and its first contacts with the New World. Authors include Dante, Shakespeare, Machiavelli, Cervantes, and Milton.
Last offered: Winter 2018 | UG Reqs: WAY-A-II

ENGLISH 114: Thinking with Poems

William Carlos Williams wrote that ¿a poem is a small (or large) machine made out of words. This class will consider lyric poems as machines for thinking, taking up the question of poetry's relationship to abstract, propositional thought. We will ask what kinds of thoughts poems as opposed to other genres of written discourse allow us to think, and explore how poems embody thought through careful attention to the mechanics of lyric form. The class will be organized into five units devoted to themes that our poems will address: love, nature, things, society, and death. While discussion of these themes will range broadly with the aim of maximizing their relevance to each participant in the class, our analysis will be tied closely to the individual poems in front of us. We will read a diverse set of poets writing in English stretching from the sixteenth to the twenty-first century, including poems by Thomas Wyatt, William Shakespeare, John Donne, George Herbert, Andrew Marvell, Phillis Wh more »
William Carlos Williams wrote that ¿a poem is a small (or large) machine made out of words. This class will consider lyric poems as machines for thinking, taking up the question of poetry's relationship to abstract, propositional thought. We will ask what kinds of thoughts poems as opposed to other genres of written discourse allow us to think, and explore how poems embody thought through careful attention to the mechanics of lyric form. The class will be organized into five units devoted to themes that our poems will address: love, nature, things, society, and death. While discussion of these themes will range broadly with the aim of maximizing their relevance to each participant in the class, our analysis will be tied closely to the individual poems in front of us. We will read a diverse set of poets writing in English stretching from the sixteenth to the twenty-first century, including poems by Thomas Wyatt, William Shakespeare, John Donne, George Herbert, Andrew Marvell, Phillis Wheatley, William Wordsworth, John Keats, Percy Shelley, Emily Dickinson, Christina Rossetti, Langston Hughes, William Carlos Williams, Wallace Stevens, Marianne Moore, Elizabeth Bishop, Gwendolyn Brooks, Claudia Rankine, and Jorie Graham, among others. This class should be of interest to all students and writers of poetry, as well as of special interest to those in the ¿literature and philosophy¿ track within the major.
Last offered: Autumn 2018 | UG Reqs: WAY-A-II

ENGLISH 115: Mapping the Grand Tour: Digital Methods for Historical Data (CLASSICS 115, HISTORY 238C, ITALIAN 115)

Classical Italy attracted thousands of travelers throughout the 1700s. Referring to their journey as the "Grand Tour," travelers pursued intellectual passions, promoted careers, and satisfied wanderlust, all while collecting antiquities to fill museums and estates back home. What can digital approaches tell us about who traveled, where and why? We will read travel accounts; experiment with parsing; and visualize historical data. Final projects to form credited contributions to the Grand Tour Project, a cutting-edge digital platform. No prior experience necessary.
Terms: Win | Units: 4-5 | UG Reqs: WAY-A-II, WAY-SI

ENGLISH 115A: Shakespeare and Modern Critical Developments

Approaches include gender studies and feminism, race studies, Shakespeare's geographies in relation to the field of cultural geography, and the importance of religion in the period.
Terms: Spr | Units: 5 | UG Reqs: GER:DB-Hum, WAY-A-II
Instructors: Parker, P. (PI)

ENGLISH 115C: Hamlet and the Critics (ENGLISH 215C, TAPS 151C, TAPS 251C)

Focus is on Shakespeare's Hamlet as a site of rich critical controversy from the eighteenth century to the present. Aim is to read, discuss, and evaluate different approaches to the play, from biographical, theatrical, and psychological to formalist, materialist, feminist, new historicist, and, most recently, quantitative. The ambition is to see whether there can be great literature without (a) great (deal of) criticism. The challenge is to understand the theory of literature through the study of its criticism.
Last offered: Winter 2019 | UG Reqs: GER:DB-Hum, WAY-A-II

ENGLISH 116: Global English

Anglophone fiction confronts readers with a paradox: It uses English to describe situations where little English is spoken, and where other languages make their presence known in the form of borrowed words, translated phrases, and unfamiliar syntax. Combining global superstars like Salman Rushdie with lesser-known authors like Phaswane Mpe and Mayra Santos-Febres, the class looks at the globalization of English in three very different contexts: India, South Africa, and the Dominican Republic.
Last offered: Spring 2019 | UG Reqs: WAY-A-II, WAY-ED
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