Fall 2017

 

EL 591  Special Topics: Literary Theory I

Instructor: Jameson Kısmet Bell

Syllabus:

Course Description:

 

 

EL  588 Special Topics: Studies in Modern English Poetry

Instructor: Özlem Görey

Syllabus: EL 588.01 Course Syllabus

Course Description:

 

 

EL 590  Special Topics: Studies in Modern English Drama: Framing the Modern: Theatre and Community

Instructor: Emine Fişek

Syllabus: 

Course Description

References to community are as flexible as they are ubiquitous in 21st century public discourse. For some, community indicates a social grouping organized around a particular identity or locality; for others, it signals their desire for a grouping yet to come. More often than not, community is evoked as a moral imperative and a necessary strategy for enduring modern life, itself synonymous with the figure of the overly bureaucratized and alienated individual. Yet this “warmly persuasive word” (Raymond Williams, Keywords) has had a complicated theoretical trajectory in the modern period, from its associations with political movements premised on violent communal identification to its partnership with global capitalism. In this course, we will take the term “community” as a framing device for thinking about cultural politics in the modern period and trace its reflections in dramatic literature from the 19th, 20th and 21st centuries. Whereas the concept of community has recently witnessed a resurgence of critical thought, theatre has long been a site for competing ideas of community formation and collectivity. Our goal then will be to think through the history as well as the complexity of the modern Western association of theatre and community.

EL 579   Graduate Seminar

Instructor: Başak Demirhan

Syllabus: 

Course Description: 

This is a non-credit course designed to teach research techniques and writing the kinds of texts that the students will need to produce during their academic careers. In this leg of the course, students practice research techniques to write an annotated bibliography, a conference abstract, and a book review.

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Spring 2016

 

EL 592  Special Topics: Literary Theory  2

Instructor: Matthew Gumpert

Syllabus: EL 592 Course Syllabus

The second half of a two-semester survey of the history of literary theory and criticism in the West.  Our point of departure in Introduction to Literary Theory and Criticism II: the radically new, even revolutionary approaches to literature made possible by the criticism of the late 19th and 20th centuries: formalism, structuralism, phenomenology, reader-response theory, new criticism, post-structuralism, and deconstruction.  These approaches to literature are all committed, in different ways, to the dethroning of the author and the de-centering of the subject.  But in the new approaches to literature that arise in the second half of the twentieth century, the subject returns with a vengeance.  The second part of this semester treats many of the most significant critical theories, including feminism, gender studies, queer theory, black criticism, race studies, post-colonial criticism, new historicism, and cultural studies, all of which attempt to understand literature as the expression of a subject which is, largely, a cultural or historical entity.

 

EL 593  Special Topics: Studies in The English Novel 

Instructor: Hande Tekdemir

Syllabus:EL 593 Course Syllabus

Focusing on a number English novels (with the exception of The Trial), this class aims to study the development of the English novel from its origins to modern day.  Our first goal is to examine the tradition of the English novel in a chronological framework by focusing on key literary moments such as the picaresque tradition, realism, aestheticism, modernism, and postmodernism. To that end, we will contextualize the emergence of the novel and interrogate the conditions under which it came into being, develop into a mature form, and continue its existence into the 21st century. As we “historicize” the English novel, we will discuss the advantages as well as the pitfalls of discussing/limiting the “autonomous” form of the novel genre within the restrictions of certain literary periods and movements. Is it possible, for instance, to historicize the English novel, but also avoid developing a crudely historicist perspective? Why/why not? I will encourage each participant to develop his/her own perspective on this question.

Our second goal is to develop a theoretical perspective on the genre of the novel by reading works by leading scholars in this field such as Bakhtin, Lukacs, Watt, among others. As we “theorize” the novel genre, we will consider the limits and possibilities of the novel as a generic form. While the theoretical texts will help us better appreciate the novels, we will also consider the limits of the genre theory in its “application” to the primary material.

 

EL 594 Advanced Topics in English Literature

This course is designed to focus on a specific literary movement or text or author/poet/dramatist for a detailed analysis. Topics vary from year to year.

 

EL 589  Readings in English Literature

Instructor: Basak Demirhan

Syllabus:

This is a noncredit course designed to teach research techniques and writing different kinds of texts that the students will need to produce during their academic careers. In this leg of the course, students practice making longer-term plans for their academic careers by preparing a statement of purpose, a grant proposal, and a sample syllabus.

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Fall 2015

 

EL 591  Special Topics: Literary Theory 1

Instructor: Matthew Gumpert

                    Syllabus: EL 591 Course Syllabus 

The first part of a two-semester survey of the history of literary theory and criticism in the West.  Introduction to Literary Theory I, like its companion course next semester, assumes there is no such thing as “simply” reading a literary text, outside of theory.  It also assumes that modern theoretical approaches to literature, even when they claim to constitute a break with the practices of the past, are inescapably rooted in those prior practices.  Such approaches represent distinct ways in which meaning in the text has been located or defined.  We will examine these strategies for pursuing or framing meaning as historically and culturally determined methodologies.  Literary Theory I offers the advanced student of literature an introduction to literary theory and criticism from classical antiquity to the beginning of the 20th century, from Plato to Freud.  The material covered in this class thus constitutes the foundation of modern critical theory.

 

EL  588 Special Topics: Studies in Modern English Poetry

Modern Poetry and Ecotheory: the Green Revolution

Instructor: Kim Fortuny

                    Syllabus: EL 588 Course Syllabus

Ecocriticism began in the 1990s as a vaguely collective study of the relationship between literature and the environment.  Based initially in the western United States, the field has since grown interdisciplinary and international in scope and is currently a major academic movement.  This seminar will focus on the poetry that inspired the movement, current texts in ecocriticism that challenge human-centered aesthetics and ethics and readings in modern poetry.

 

EL 590  Special Topics: Studies in Modern English Drama

Instructor: Aslı Tekinay

                  Syllabus: EL 590 Course Syllabus

 

The twentieth century English drama challenges the Renaissance in terms of the wide range of plays it produced. The significant social, cultural and political changes that the country went through in the 20th century reflected onto the thematic as well as stylistic variety that we observe in the realm of drama.  Between Bernard Shaw’s rational drama of social issues and the ‘in-yer-face’ theatre of our contemporary times, there is a variety of dramatic output on the English stage. The course treats intellectual, political, kitchen-sink, epic, agit-prop, angry and absurd drama not as self-contained but interrelated units that may overlap. Modern English drama is read in the light of cultural and literary theories as well as theories of the theatre.

 

EL 579   Graduate Seminar

Instructor: Basak Demirhan

                   Syllabus: EL 579 Course Syllabus

This is a non-credit course designed to teach research techniques and writing the kinds of texts that the students will need to produce during their academic careers. In this leg of the course, students practice research techniques to write an annotated bibliography, a conference abstract, and a book review.