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School of Humanities

English Undergraduate Course Descriptions

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Fall 2024

Summary of the Fall 2024 course offerings’ alignment with English BA and English Education BA degree requirements

 
ENG 221 
Fiction Writing I 
Instructor TBD 
T/TH 4:00-5:15PM 
 
In this class, you will write your own original fiction. Class sessions will be organized around craft topics, which will include assigned outside readings and writing exercises. You will also write one short story or novel chapter. Craft topics will include: character, dialogue, setting, structure, style, revision, and more. 
 
 
 
ENG 223 
Creative Writing I: Mixed Genre 
Dr. Olivia Clare Friedman 
T/TH 1:00-2:15PM 
 
In this course, you will write your own original fiction and poetry. Class sessions will be organized around craft topics, which will include assigned readings and writing exercises. We’ll begin with fiction. Craft topics will include: character, dialogue, setting, structure, revision, and more. For poetry, craft topics will include: the line, sound, imagery, and more. 
 
Recommended Text: 
Imaginative Writing, Janet Burroway 
 
Short stories and poems to be distributed in class 
 
 
 
 
ENG 301 
Advanced Grammar 
Ms. Amy Carey 
T/TH 9:30-10:45AM 
 
A study of the structures, origins, power, and rhetorical nature of language and the effects of different approaches to grammar. This course is designed for both English and English Education students and will fulfill the language elective requirement for English Education students. Students will analyze standard and rhetorical features of English language and grammar, also considering how history, culture, and systems of power have traditionally defined grammatical standards and how those standards are continually changing and adapting. Participants will gain confidence in their own mastery of advanced English grammar; they will also deepen their ability to analyze its rhetorical effects and communicate that analysis to others through Field Notes assignments and a final research project. This course will use a rhetorical framework for studying both prescriptive and descriptive grammar structures and apply that framework to students’ own writing. 
 
Required Text: Rhetorical Grammar: Grammatical Choices, Rhetorical Effects, Kolln & Gray, 8th edition 
 
 
 
ENG 312/411/511 
Postcolonial Literature: The Irish Renaissance 
Dr. Damon Franke 
W 6:00-9:00PM 
**GULF COAST CAMPUS** 
 
Course Description: This course examines the literature and history of the Irish Renaissance from its origins in the ferment surrounding the Gaelic League and the Home Rule movement in the 1890s through the founding of the Abbey Theatre to the formation of the Irish Free State in 1922. In the process, students will learn of the function of literature in forming a national consciousness and identity through the use of Celtic mythology and the Irish landscape as Ireland finally cast off seven hundred years of oppression and became the model for subsequent independence and postcolonial movements. Irish poets too answered the call for Home Rule and later became the statesmen who ruled the homeland. The Irish Renaissance truly was a “flowering of thought,” and the movement is inseparable from the individual nationalist voices of W.B. Yeats, Lady Gregory, J.M. Synge, and the patriots as well as the more cosmopolitan voices of Bernard Shaw, Oscar Wilde, and James Joyce. Students in history, film, psychology, education, political science, and the sciences can design their own projects according to their interests. Email Damon.Franke@usm.edu for further info. 
 
 
 
ENG 313 
Survey in Multiethnic Literature: “American Life on the Hyphen” 
Dr. Luis Iglesias 
T/TH 1:00-2:15PM 
 
“American Life on the Hyphen” will explore the multiethnic, multiracial dimensions of American literature where the “hyphenated” identity emerges from a need to both assimilate into the larger national culture and express the exceptionalism at the heart of American society. Reading across a wide spectrum of texts written by ethnically and racially diverse authors, in multiple genres (novels, short stories, and poetry), the course will explore the ways the “American Melting Pot” both enables and challenges racial difference and expression as well as the creative tension between assimilation and acculturation. 
 
Among the works read: 
Passing, Nella Larsen 
Lot: Stories, Bryan Washington 
If I Survive You, Jonathan Escoffrey 
Interior Chinatown, Charles Yu 
Bodega Dreams, Ernesto Quiñonez 
Plantains and Our Becoming, Melania Luisa Marte 
 
 
 
ENG 321/421 
Fiction Writing II/Fiction Writing III 
Dr. Olivia Clare Friedman 
T/TH 4:00-5:15PM 
 
In this class, you will write your own original fiction and workshop one another’s fiction. In addition to honing your craft, you will be working on your workshop skills. Craft topics will include: character, dialogue, setting, structure, style, revision, and more. You may turn in either short stories or novel chapters. 
 
Recommended Text: 
Writing Fiction, 10th Edition, Janet Burroway, Elizabeth Stuckey-French, Ned Stuckey-French 
 
Short stories and novel excerpts to be distributed in class 
 
 
 
ENG 340 
Analysis of Literature 
Dr. Eric Tribunella 
T/TH 8:00-9:15AM 
 
ENG 340 is designed to introduce or review the methods of research in literary studies, the conventions of scholarly conversations about literary works, the critical approaches to literary analysis, and the components and mechanics of literary-critical essays. In this section, we will study several foundational critical approaches to literature and read a small selection of literary works on which to practice analysis, such as Meg Rosoff’s How I Live Now and Marcus Sedgwick’s Midwinterblood. 
 
 
 
ENG 350  
British Literature I 
Dr. Leah Parker 
M/W 2:30-3:45PM 
 
How does literature shape our culture, our history, and our individual selves? This survey explores British literature from the eighth century through the eighteenth century. Students will become knowledgeable about authors and texts that are considered parts of the “canon” of English literature, as well as their less canonical—though no less important—contemporaries. We will explore the relationship between literature and history, through stories that reimagine history in light of their own historical moments, from the beginnings of the English language to the dawn of the British Empire. We will also explore aspects of British literature beyond English, including texts translated from Latin, French, and Celtic languages and texts inspired by or commenting on other parts of Europe and the world.  
Readings will include selections from Beowulf, the Mabinogi, Le Morte Darthur, Faerie Queene, Paradise Lost, and works by authors including the Venerable Bede, Marie de France, Geoffrey Chaucer, Sir Philip Sidney, Lady Mary Wroth, Queen Elizabeth I, William Shakespeare, Aemilia Lanyer, Margaret Cavendish, Ben Jonson, John Donne, Alexander Pope, Aphra Behn, Daniel Defoe, and Phillis Wheatley. 
 
 
 
ENG 370 
Survey of American Literature I 
Dr. Craig Carey 
M/W 4:00-5:15PM 
 
This course offers a survey of early and nineteenth-century American literature. Reading across multiple literary genres and print media, the course will examine the complicated emergence of American literature in the context of geographical, political, economic, religious, intellectual, and technological change. Students will be introduced to different periods, genres, styles, authors, and debates in the field, while also reflecting on broad changes in the history of reading, writing, and literature. Designed as survey, the course offers an introduction to the diversity of American literature and the diversity of methods used to make sense of a literary history fraught with conflict, tension, and contradiction. Students will learn and practice different methods of reading by engaging literary history through a combination of close reading, personal reflection, critical analysis, archival research, and experimental play. 
 
 
 
ENG 400/ENG 489 
The South and Film 
Dr. Kate Cochran 
T/TH 11:00AM-12:15PM 
 
This course will investigate how the South has been portrayed in American film and literature in the 20th and 21st centuries, from one of its first filmic appearances in The Birth of a Nation (1915) to the recent Minari (2023), and its correspondence in fiction. We will be supplementing our viewing and discussions of primary movies and literature with a variety of clips from other films, critical articles, and brief, focused lectures. The course is arranged by topic, rather than chronologically, and examines some of the major tropes in movies about the South, like the plantation legend, slavery’s legacy, the struggle for civil rights, weirdness/depravity, magical realism, and a non-binary culture (multiethnicities, queerness, feminism). In addition to completing readings and viewing films, students will craft three brief essays and one longer researched essay, and ENG 400 students will complete two oral assignments. 
 
 
 
ENG 401 
Composition for Teachers 
Dr. Rebecca Powell 
M/W 11:00AM-12:15PM ONLINE SYNCHRONOUS CHAT 
 
The best teachers of writing write. Join Composition Study to deepen your understanding of writing processes and the teaching of writing. 
 
 
 
ENG 402 
Literature Study for Teachers 
Dr. Kate Cochran 
T/Th 2:30-3:45 ONLINE SYNCHRONOUS CHAT 
 
This course is designed to examine both theoretical and practical problems in the teaching of literature at the high school level. Through reading poems, short stories, memoirs, and novels as our primary texts, we will become acquainted with textual and generic issues. Our secondary text offers pedagogical and methodological suggestions for instructors charged with teaching literature; we will examine theories of teaching literature and literary theories relevant to the secondary English classroom to ascertain how they best apply to English instruction. Students will practice class activities, create a book talk, complete a multigenre research project, take a final comprehensive essay exam, and observe a class video, including writing a reflection on the observation. As a required course for English Education students and an elective course for Elementary Education students at the undergraduate level, this course seeks to help students understand the current theories and processes of teaching literature. Students will learn about themselves as readers/critics and will work together to further deepen their understanding of how students learn. 
 
 
 
ENG 413 
Survey of the Continental Novel 
Dr. Ery Shin 
T/TH 11:00AM-12:15PM 
 
Bringing together celebrated authors such as Flaubert, Tolstoy, Proust, Woolf, and the Nardals, this course traces the evolution of the novel across modern Europe. Key developments in those elusive things we call “style” and “zeitgeist” will receive sustained attention. Despite ongoing declamations regarding its demise, the novel has emerged as a remarkably resilient and malleable genre, surprising even its most vociferous critics in its ability to not only keep up with the times but also inform them. 
 
 
 
ENG 418 
Literature for the Adolescent (Young Adult Literature) 
Dr. Eric Tribunella 
T/TH 1:00-2:15PM 
 
This course will focus on the emergence and development of young adult (YA) literature from the mid-twentieth century to the present. We will examine the kinds of thematic issues addressed in YA fiction and how these issues take up the interests and concerns of young adults. We will also consider how this literature illuminates the history, construction, and perception of the adolescent and teenager in American culture. We will read a selection of different genres of YA fiction, including the New Realist novel, the problem novel, the fantasy novel, historical fiction, the graphic novel, dystopian fiction, and the novel in verse. Although we will approach these texts as literary and cultural critics, we also will be mindful of how our analysis of them bears upon pedagogical and curricular questions with regards to the instruction of adolescents. 
 
 
 
ENG 448 
Studies in Games and Literature: “Twisty Little Passages” 
Dr. Craig Carey 
M/W 1:00-2:15 
 
This course will examine historical, critical, and experimental approaches to interactive fiction. Where do literature and games meet? What is the relationship between reading and playing, fiction and rules, and literary and interactive texts? What can interactive fiction teach us about the future of reading and literature in an algorithmic century where games, AI, user interfaces, and digital applications have changed the experience of reading? In this course, we’ll consider these questions by reading celebrated examples of interactive fiction and electronic literature, literary fiction by Jorge Luis Borges, Ted Chiang, and Susanna Clarke, scholarly criticism in literary and game studies, and a selection of contemporary video games and interactive movie games such as Kentucky Route Zero, Norco, Her Story, and Immortality. You’ll also write and design an interactive text, playing with rules and constraints to create your own worlds and “twisty little passages.” 
 
 

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