ENGL 231
Literature of the Sea Spring 2015 (also offered Fall 2014)
Division I Writing Skills
Cross-listed MAST 231 / ENGL 231
This is not the current course catalog

Class Details

Taking advantage of our maritime museum, coastal setting, and three field seminars, we study canonical and lesser-known American novelists, travel writers, and poets who set their works in the watery world, often in the exact places where we travel as a class. We read, for example–depending on fall or spring semester–Hemingway when sailing on the Straits of Florida, Steinbeck when exploring Cannery Row on Monterey Bay, and Twain on a steamboat on the Mississippi. We read Rachel Carson beside the Mystic River estuary, Chopin on the sands of the Gulf of Mexico, Kipling out on Georges Bank, and Melville’s masterpiece Moby-Dick aboard Mystic Seaport’s historic whaleship, the Charles W. Morgan, a vessel nearly identical to the vessel he climbed aboard at age twenty-one. In the classroom we examine these works through a mixture of lecture, small-group discussion, and formal and creative writing. To further appreciation and analysis, this interdisciplinary course uses students’ emerging knowledge of maritime history and marine science. Other authors and poets include, depending on fall or spring: Richard Henry Dana, Jr., Walt Whitman, Jack London, Joseph Conrad, T.S. Eliot, Langston Hughes, Elizabeth Bishop, Frederick Douglass, Timothy Egan, and Ursula K. Le Guin.
The Class: Format: small group tutorials with weekly lectures, including coastal and near-shore field trips, and 10 days at sea
Grading: no pass/fail option, no fifth course option
Requirements/Evaluation: regular papers, class participation, journal-writing, and a final paper
Extra Info: offered only at Mystic Seaport
Distributions: Division I Writing Skills
Notes: This course is cross-listed and the prefixes carry the following divisional credit:
MAST 231 Division I ENGL 231 Division I
Attributes: AMST Arts in Context Electives
ENVI Humanities, Arts + Social Science Electives
ENVP SC-B Group Electives

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