ENGL 445
World's End: Literary Ecologies of the Limit Fall 2018 Division I; Cross-listed as ENGL445 / ENVI445

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Consciousness of the world’s finitude in a time of environmental degradation and headlong global capitalism prompts restraint, a harboring of resources. But beyond the economic logic of conservation and expenditure, might imagining the world from the vantage point of its limit provoke a more profound rethinking of ourselves and the things of the world? Does it change what it means to possess, or even what an experience of the world is? Does it change human relationship? This course explores these questions in part by reaching back to the early modern period, when the boundedness of nations and worlds first comes to view in a meaningful way. But the course will have a long arc, from Shakespeare to Sinha’s Animal’s People. Primary works will include: Shakespeare, As You Like It; Marvell, “Upon Appleton House”; Ovid, Metamorphosis; Browne, Urn Burial; Titian, Wordsworth, McCarthy, The Road; Alice Oswald; photography (Struth, Hutte), video installations (Pipilotti Rist). Theoretical texts include: Nixon, Slow Violence; Agamben, The Time that Remains; Heidegger, “Question Concerning Technology”; Latour, “An Inquiry into Modes of Existence”; Nancy, After Fukushima; Derrida, The animal that therefore I am and Beast and the Sovereign.
The Class: Type: seminar; combination discussion seminar and tutorial conferences
Limit: 15
Expected: 12
Class#: 1715
Requirements/Evaluation: one 5-page paper and one final 15-page paper
Prerequisites: none
Enrollment Preference: English majors using the course to fulfill a requirement; Environmental Studies majors; Comparative Studies majors
Distributions: Division I;
Attributes: ENGL Criticism Courses; ENGL Literary Histories A; PHIL Related Courses

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