ENGL 309
Literary Theory and Ordinary Language Spring 2015 Division I;
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Ludwig Wittgenstein is commonly cited as one of the central figures in twentieth-century philosophy, and the ordinary language philosophy of J. L. Austin and Stanley Cavell is often seen as one of the century’s major philosophical movements. Yet the writing of all these figures remains relatively under-appreciated in literary studies. In this course we will address this shortcoming in two ways. First, we will examine some of the basic claims put forward in ordinary language philosophy, particularly as they compare and contrast with various contemporary literary-theoretical projects. Topics may include meaning and intention (Anscombe, Fish, Derrida, de Man, Michaels); experimental writing (R.M. Berry, Theodor Adorno); gender (Toril Moi, Judith Butler); emotion, affect, and expression (Deleuze, Terada, Leys, Altieri, Eldridge); and animals (Cora Diamond, Cary Wolfe). Most of our time will be spent reading philosophy and theory, but we’ll also look at a couple of works of literature (a Shakespeare play and a contemporary novel) and a couple of films.
The Class: Type: seminar/discussion
Limit: 20
Expected: 20
Class#: 3611
Requirements/Evaluation: active participation in class discussions, bi-weekly response papers (approx. 300-400 words each), and one 15-page research paper
Extra Info: may not be taken on a pass/fail basis
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 Preference: English majors and all students, regardless of major, by seniority
Distributions: Division I;

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