COMP 240
Introduction to Literary Theory Spring 2015
Division I Writing Skills
Cross-listed COMP 240 / ENGL 230
This is not the current course catalog

Class Details

This course introduces students to some of the most significant and compelling trends in modern criticism-such as gender theory, deconstruction, new historicism, and psychoanalytic criticism-in an applied, hands-on way. The course will consider a few primary texts from different eras-a Shakespeare play, a nineteenth-century novel, a contemporary film, for example-each in terms of a variety of theoretical approaches. Can Othello be read as a feminist text? A site of class struggle? A staging of the relationship between language and the unconscious? The course aims both to make familiar some of the critical methods students are likely to encounter in the field of literary studies these days, and to show how such methods can transform our understanding of a text, opening surprising possibilities even in familiar works. In the process, the course will also raise broader questions about the imperatives and usefulness of literary theory in relation to texts and worlds.
The Class: Format: seminar
Limit: 19
Expected: 19
Class#: 3583
Grading: yes pass/fail option, yes fifth course option
Requirements/Evaluation: frequent short papers totaling 20 pages
Prerequisites: a 100-level ENGL course, or a score of 5 on the AP English Literature exam, or a score of 6 or 7 on the Higher Level IB English exam
Enrollment Preferences: first-year students, sophomores, English majors who have yet to take a Gateway, and potential Comparative Literature majors
Distributions: Division I Writing Skills
Notes: This course is cross-listed and the prefixes carry the following divisional credit:
COMP 240 Division I ENGL 230 Division I
Attributes: AMST Critical and Cultural Theory Electives
ENGL Criticism Courses
ENGL 200-level Gateway Courses

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