This course explores a wide range of medieval literature (all in modern English translation) from around the world. The focus will be “global” in two senses: our texts take readers on journeys with medieval heroes, merchants, exiles, pilgrims, and other travelers to far-reaching locations; even more importantly, these works are cross-cultural in form and content, created within global contexts and reflecting a vast array of influences from diverse oral and literary traditions.
What are the appropriate limits of state power? Should the state be able to forbid, say, my choice to use drugs, sell my kidney, or take money for sex? To censor my speech or tax my income? The answer varies according to one’s theory of justice – or view about the proper exercise of state force. This course introduces students to prominent theories of justice in an attempt to answer such questions. We will make our way from utilitarian to libertarian to egalitarian conceptions of justice.
A study of works written by or about women, this course is an opportunity to explore the distinct issues that women, their representations, and their writing raise. Possible topics: Women’s Autobiography, Contemporary Black Women Authors, and others. May be repeated once with different topic.
An exploration of the shifting meanings and interpretation of “security,” particularly the securitization of population. The course covers a wide range of population topics, including aging, migration, the youth “bulge,” urbanization, health, and the demographic “bonus.” Population trends, their security implications, and their connections to issues such as development and the environment are examined.
A study of the development of the novel of manners as a genre over the nineteenth and twentieth centuries in both England and the United States. This course introduces students to the conventions of the novel of manners and explores the major novelists’ reception and revision of prior works in this influential genre. Authors include: Jane Austen, Henry James, and Edith Wharton.
This course will examine the visual arts in Western Europe and the Byzantine East during the period normally known as the Middle Ages. Chronologically this stretches roughly from the reign of Constantine in the 4th century to the outbreak of the Black Death in Europe in 1348 (or stylistically from the end of the classical period to the dawn of the Renaissance). During this era, Europe saw strikingly new and original artistic forms, both in a secular context and in art related to the increasingly influential Christian church.
This course will survey the African American literary tradition from the 1600s to the present, with a particular focus on how the musings of African Americans capture, engage and critique the American narrative. Authors may include: Phillis Wheatley, W.E.B. Du Bois, Charles Chesnutt, Claude McKay, Zora Neale Hurston, Gwendolyn Brooks, Ralph Ellison, Toni Morrison, et cetera.
A study of literature written about the American South, primarily but not exclusively Southern literature of the 19th and 20th centuries. Authors likely to be studied include William Faulkner, Robert Penn Warren, Margaret Walker, Flannery O’Connor, Thomas Wolfe, Eudora Welty, and Ernest J. Gaines.
This course examines the history of urbanization from a geographic perspective. This entails an analysis of the historical development of
cities and an investigation of the spatial theories utilized to understand the causes of urbanization and its impacts on everyday life. The
course begins with a discussion of key concepts such as industrialization, urban political-economy, suburbanization, and the ghetto/inner
city. The course then focuses on four inter-related urban processes: working in the city, governing the city, living in the city, and urban
A survey of Shakespeare’s poems and plays, including sonnets, some ten representative comedies, histories, and tragedies from his earlier, middle and later periods, and a generically mixed romance. While the focus will be on literary analysis, the class will also explore the greater context of Shakespeare, from the historical meanings of words in his texts to the performance of his works today. This course is designed to provide students with extensive practice in close textual analysis in preparation for enjoying Shakespeare throughout their lives.