Course Topics

ENG 485 A Faulkner

William Faulkner (1897-1962, winner of the 1950 Nobel Prize for Literature) claimed that "in the South, the past in never gone—it's not even past." Neither is Faulkner himself, considering the long shadow he still casts over American (especially Southern) literature. Beginning with two of his major novels, THE SOUND AND THE FURY and ABSALOM, ABSALOM!, we'll investigate Faulkner's work, legacy, and influence, exploring such questions as these: What makes this writer so influential? What does "influence" mean, anyway? What are the origins, obstacles, and purposes of literary style? How and why do writers respond to one another's work, to place, to history, to a common literary heritage, to gaps between their chosen medium (written words) and what they attempt to render through that medium? What happens to familiar Faulknerian themes like race, class, the nature of consciousness, the nature of time, changing social mores, history, and memory in different hands? Additional authors will include Walker Percy, Jayne Anne Phillips, Toni Morrison, and Cormac McCarthy.

ENG 312 A Creative Writing: Poet & Fiction II

An advanced-level course in the writing of poems and stories for students dedicated to making imaginative, emotional, and technical discoveries in the practice of their craft. Readings in contemporary poetry and fiction, as well as in-class exercises and student workshops.

ENG 239 A In Frankenstein's Footstep

Mary Shelley composed her famous novel Frankenstein (1816) amid a whirlwind of personal turmoil, important friendships, and significant travel. This course will retrace the path of her journeys from childhood to Frankenstein, visiting sites associated with her and her circle - including John Keats, Percy Shelley, and Lord Byron - in London, Switzerland, and Italy, as we investigate the relationships between an author's historical and imaginative realities.