Spring 2010 Courses

029. Historians, Comediennes, Storytellers: Women Filmmakers in the German-Speaking Countries
Birgit Tautz T  11:30 - 12:55
TH 11:30 - 12:55
Examines the work of women filmmakers in the German-speaking countries since the 1960s. By analyzing a range of films and cinematic genres—to include narrative cinema, biography, documentary, and comedy—explores key interests of these directors: the telling of stories and (German, European, global) histories, the exploration of gender identity, sexuality, and various waves of feminism, the portrayal of women, the participation in the cinematic conventions of Hollywood as well as independent and avant-garde film, spectatorship. Also introduces students to film criticism; includes weekly film screenings. No knowledge of German required.
242. History of Black Sexual Politics
Keona Ervin M  2:30 - 3:55
W  2:30 - 3:55
Chase Barn Chamber
Explores how gender and sexuality function within African American communities in the United States using historical and contemporary case studies. Examines connections between constructions of Black femininity and masculinity, racial identity formation and social inequality against the backdrop of slavery and emancipation, segregation, the Great Depression and World War II, the black freedom struggle, and what many have called the post-civil rights era. Materials include interdisciplinary scholarly texts and articles, films, novels, and music.
243. Victorian Genders
Aviva Briefel T  2:30 - 3:55
TH 2:30 - 3:55
Investigates the literary and cultural construction of gender in Victorian England. Of central concern are fantasies of “ideal” femininity and masculinity, representations of unconventional gender roles and sexualities, and the dynamic relationship between literary genres and gender ideologies of the period. Authors may include Charlotte Bronte, Freud, Gissing, Hardy, Rider Haggard, Christina Rossetti, Ruskin, Schreiner, Tennyson, and Wilde.
252. American Intimacies: Sex and Love in Nineteenth-Century Literature
Peter Coviello T  11:30 - 12:55
TH 11:30 - 12:55
Homosexuality and its conceptual twin, heterosexuality, are surprisingly late coinages. So what was sex like before such concepts organized the sphere of intimate life in America? Was it a set of bodily practices? An aspect of a person’s identity? Was sexuality something an individual could be said to possess? What forms of contact, invest attachment, or imagination could even be counted as sex, and why? Authors may include Whitman, Thoreau, Jewett, Melville, Hawthorne, James, Douglas, Dickinson, and Joseph Smith. Note: This course fulfills the literature of the Americas requirement for English majors.
253. Constructions of the Body
Susan Bell M  11:30 - 12:55
W  11:30 - 12:55
Explores the body as a refl ection and construction of language, a source of metaphor, and a political and social “space.” Considers historical and cross-cultural studies about men’s and women’s bodies, sexuality, gender, and power. Throughout, draws from and compares theories of the body in sociology, women’s studies, and gay and lesbian studies.
255. Contemporary Literature and Culture in English: Cold War Literature and Culture
Celeste Goodridge W  1:00 - 3:55 Hatch Library-210
Explores different topics across genres in contemporary, post-1945 literature and culture in English. Focuses on how the literature and culture of this period both reflects and subverts the dominant ideologies of the period. Authors may include Capote, Salinger, Plath, Highsmith, Baldwin, Richard Yates, McCarthy, Albee, and Williams. Research projects required. Note: This course fulfills the literature of the Americas requirement for English majors.
338. Sex and the Word: Freud, Psychoanalysis, American Literature
Peter Coviello W  1:00 - 3:55 Searles-127
An examination of one of the great theorists of intimacy and its vexations, and of the provision his works make—or might make—for the study of literature. Aims not to produce successfully “Freudian” readings of given texts, or to assign one or another of Freud’s categories of pathology to fictional characters, but to test what sort of purchase Freud’s varied investigations—of language and desire, of loss and transformation, and especially of the intricate relations of gender and sexuality to one another, and to the very experience of selfhood—might afford us in our encounter with the pleasures and problems of modern fiction. Authors will include Freud and many of his critics, as well as Henry James, Nella Larsen, Willa Cather, James Baldwin, and others. Note: This course fulfills the literature of the Americas requirement for English majors.