Spring 2007

ENG 223 [22658] AFRICAN-AMERICAN LITERATURE 1945-PRESENT: This course will continue the survey of African-American literature, taking into special account some of the novelistic achievements of the 20th century, the rise of black drama, the Black Arts movement, and a wide range of poetry. Our main text will be the Norton Anthology of African-American Literature (2nd ed.). Additionally, we will read novels by Ellison, Gaines, and Morrison. TR 10:50, Sinche


ENG 225W [22632, 18444, 20048] INTRODUCTION TO CREATIVE WRITING: The purpose of this class is to introduce students to the variety of basic techniques in the writing of short fiction, poetry, drama, and creative nonfiction. Weekly assignments both in and out of class will focus on developing skill in such elements of creative writing as character development, plot, dialogue, metaphor, image, and versification, among others. Students will evaluate craft elements in both published writing and peer writing, and will experiment with and revise to improve craft elements in their own creative work. Students will be assigned a minimum of 25 pages of graded writing, including exercises, multiple drafts of creative work, evaluations, and reactions. Completion of this course enables students to register for upper-division writing seminars in fiction, poetry, playwriting, and the personal essay.  Writing Intensive.   MWF 9:30, Carrier; MWF 10:30, Carrier; MW 6:10, Staff


ENG 231 [22645] SURVEY OF ENGLISH LITERATURE II: Our survey begins with the rise of the Romantic Movement in the Age of Revolution and features such poets as Burns, Blake, Wordsworth, Byron and Keats; proceeds through the Victorian Age, in which writers like Tennyson, Dickens, Browning, Christina Rossetti and the Bronte sisters forge literary identities in an expanding industrial landscape; and continues through the 20th century with deepening and broadening explorations of consciousness in writers such as Eliot, Yeats, Woolf, Heaney, and Rushdie.  The interplay of politics and poetry as well as the contributions of the excluded (women, workers, or colonial subjects) will be discussed.  MW 4:50, Ross


ENG 253 [25687] SHAKESPEARE ON FILM: What makes the plays of Shakespeare so adaptable to film, and why have so many successful films of his plays been made?  What happens when the plays move from the medium of theater to the medium of film?  And how have film adaptations of Shakespeare changed over time?  By pairing early adaptations with later ones (Midsummer Night’s Dream by Max Reinhardt and by Michael Hoffman; Henry V by Laurence Olivier and Kenneth Branagh; Romeo and Juliet by George Cukor and Franco Zeffirelli – and Baz Luhrmann), the course will explore changing interpretations of the medium and of the plays.  Class sessions will examine the texts of the play themselves, how they work on the stage, and how the film versions make use of the particular advantages of cinema and seek to overcome its limitations.  In this way the course will serve as an introduction to the interrelationship of text, theater, and film and offer insight into the remarkable adaptability and relevance of the plays of Shakespeare. Students will write two short papers and a final paper and there will also be a final exam.  F 1:30, Tonkin


ENG 311W [19151] CREATIVE WRITING: FICTION: This is an advanced writing workshop where students will  develop a deeper facility with the elements of fiction, including character development, plot, scene, point of view,  dialogue, and setting, among others. Students will evaluate craft elements in both published writing and peer writing,  and will experiment with and revise to improve craft elements in their own short fiction. Outside reading will be  drawn from anthologies of contemporary fiction and essays on the craft.  Students will be assigned a minimum of 25 pages of graded writing, including exercises, multiple drafts of creative work, evaluations, and reactions.  This  course may be repeated for credit more than once with written permission of the department chair.  Writing intensive.   Prerequisite: ENG 225W.  TR 4:50, Stores


ENG 321 [22671] FAULKNER AND THE COLOR LINE: In 1901, W.E.B. DuBois wrote presciently that “the problem of the 20th century is the problem of the color line.” America’s people, politicians, and authors wrestle with that problem still. In this course, we will read several works by William Faulkner (Go Down, Moses, Light in August, The Sound and the Fury, and Absalom, Absalom!) and put them in dialogue with some of the best African-American writing of the past century (The Autobiography of Miss Jane Pittman, Sula, Invisible Man) to find out what the “color line” is and how authors have imagined its impact. The course will require consistent reading of some very difficult texts as well as active participation and insightful writing. TR 3:30, Sinche


ENG 322 [22684] AMERICAN POETRY:  American poetry since the Civil War is the bastard offspring of an oddly matched but prolifically (re)productive couple.  They are Walt Whitman, the self-celebrating Kosmos of Manhattan, and Emily Dickinson, the self-effacing belle of Amherst.  We will explore the dynamic interplay of their maximalist and minimalist aesthetics by studying their major poetic inheritors from Robert Frost and Marianne Moore to Allen Ginsberg and Sylvia Plath.  TR 6:10, Stull


ENG 333W [20051 STUDIES IN CREATIVE WRITING: THE FORM OF POETRY: This is an advanced poetry workshop focused on traditional and modern verse forms, including the couplet, blank verse, sonnet, sestina, pantoum, villanelle, terza rima, and syllabics, among others. Students will develop a deeper facility with the elements of poetry, including line, image, rhythm, tone, diction, and structure, among others, by examining poetry written in traditional and modern verse forms. Students will experiment and revise to improve craft elements in their poetry. Students will examine craft elements in published poetry, as well as in the work they and their peers submit for workshop. Outside reading will be drawn from an anthology of poetry in verse forms, as well as from photocopies of essays on craft. Students will be assigned a generous amount of graded writing, including exercises, multiple drafts of creative work, analyses, and personal responses. Prerequisite: ENG 225W.  Writing Intensive.  MWF 12:30, Carrier


ENG 349/DRA 349 [19334] MODERN DRAMA: 1920-PRESENT: In this course we will examine the works of modern and contemporary playwrights in their social and political contexts.  We will cover such theatrical styles as Expressionism, Epic, Surrealism and the Absurd.  Playwrights to be considered may include Beckett, Ionesco, Pinter, Albee, Mamet and Shepard.  We will also be viewing and discussing theatre performed on campus and in the local area. TR 9:25, Striff


ENG 362/DRA 332 [19421] SHAKESPEARE: PLAYS AFTER 1600:  Studies of seven major plays written during the second half of Shakespeare’s career—Hamlet, Othello, King Lear, Measure for Measure, Antony and Cleopatra, The Winter’s Tale, and The Tempest .  Some attention will be given to historical context and critical approaches.  This course will culminate in a Shakespeare Scene Festival in which students will perform scenes from the plays studied.   MW 1:30, Logan


ENG 363 [22710] TRANSFORMING SHAKESPEARE: What does it take to transform Shakespeare’s texts into a staged play, a film, a Broadway musical, an opera, a ballet, or some other type of musical composition?  In attempting to answer this question, the course will concentrate on various ways of regarding Shakespeare’s texts and examine the multidisciplinary process of turning a text into contemporary performative art. The texts will include Much Ado About Nothing, Romeo and Juliet, Hamlet, Othello, and As You Like It.  In addition to discussing the reemergence of these texts as stage productions, films, and musical compositions, students will participate in performance activities. M 7:30, Logan


ENG 368 [20112, 19123] THE DEVELOPMENT OF THEATRE: A multimedia approach to the origin and development of dramatic literature and performance.  Through readings, video, film, and live performance of historical and contemporary texts, discover how contemporary theater came to be by tracing its roots to ancient, medieval, Renaissance, and 18th-century dramatic performances and learn about theater architecture, traditions of acting, and the social role of theater in culture. Requirements: A midterm and a final, several short papers, and an in-class presentation/performance. Possible Texts: Aeschylus, Agamemnon; The Second Shepherd’s Play; Everyman; Shakespeare, The Tempest; Webster, The Duchess of Malfi; a Molière play;  Sheridan, The School for Scandal;  Sam Shepard, Buried Child;, Tony Kushner, Angels in America. The course will consist of two sections, and will be team-taught by Dr. Catherine Stevenson and Dr. Humphrey Tonkin on the Asylum Avenue campus.  TR 4:30


HON 383   [23815] PERSPECTIVES ON CHILDHOOD: CULTURAL AND SOCIAL CONTEXTS: This course will consider the concept of childhood as a social construction and the lives of real children in the 21st century. Many of our notions of childhood date back to the early 19th century when Western cultures first began to think of childhood as a distinct stage of life. Ideas about children’s innocence, sexuality, creativity, primitive animalism, vulnerability, etc. all influenced how children have been raised, educated, and judged—morally and legally. These new ideas also inspired a rich literary tradition and a genre of texts aimed specifically at children. We will consider a wide variety of films and literary texts that reflect diverse perspectives on childhood, study some of the most important recent academic discussions of childhood, and look at how ideas about childhood interact with other aspects of human identity, such as class, gender, and ethnicity.  TR 4:50, Barstow


ENG 433  [22723] MILTON   John Milton’s Paradise Lost, the greatest epic poem in the English language, is also among the most influential poems ever written, invoked in works as diverse as Wordsworth’s Prelude (1850) and Tom Tykwer’s film, Run Lola Run (1999).  Paradise Lost retells the tale of Adam and Eve, and besides being beautifully written, it has everything one might expect in a juicy story: love, deception, betrayal, sex, ambition, heroic sacrifice, envy, regret, and hope.  We will devote most of the course to enjoying—and making sense of—Paradise Lost, but we will spend some time studying Milton’s other works and discussing his relationships with literary predecessors, too.  Milton lived in exciting times that witnessed a bloody civil war and the beheading of the king, so we will also explore his deep involvement in the great religious and political controversies of his day. TR 2:05, Blackwell


ENG 452 [22736] HISTORY OF THE ENGLISH LANGUAGE: How did "hwaet" become "what"? And why is "quaint" a really dirty word? And where did words like "brittened" and "gobbets" go? Why do words like "through" and "cough" and "though" sound completely different even though the spelling is so similar? This course will look at the history of the English language from the Celts to the twentieth century. We will understand the impact the Saxons and the Normans had on the words we speak, look at the phenomenon of the "Great Vowel Shift" when English speakers started pronouncing words differently, and ultimately look to the future of English and the impact other countries, technology, and science will have on how we sound and what we say. Along the way we look at works from Caedmon to Mark Twain to 20th-century authors as we try to answer the question, "What is the English language?" MW 2:55, Brown


ENG 465W [19336] THE CAPSTONE COURSE: THEORY AND PRACTICE OF CREATIVE WRITING:  The Spring section of the capstone course for English majors will focus on theory, practice, and publication for the graduating senior with a creative writing emphasis. We will examine theories of creativity from a wide range of  seminal works, including Aristotle, Rilke, Freud, and  others, especially as these ideas pertain to the writing of poetry,  fiction, personal essays, and drama. What does it mean to be a "creative writer" both as an individual and in relationship to the wider society?  What are current practices in creative writing professions, and how might one apply them to his or her own work? Each student will participate in a research project relevant to creative writing, complete an individual publishing project, and compile a portfolio of professional materials.  R 7:30, Stores


Course Descriptions

University of Hartford

Department of English

200 Bloomfield Avenue

West Hartford, CT 06117




For General Course Descriptions, see the English section of the University Bulletin. A suggested timeline for literature majors and creative writing majors is also available.