Undergraduate Course Offerings - Spring 2020
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ENGL 2307.160 Introduction to Fiction
Dr. Ben Rogerson
(MWF 10:00-10:50 AM) CRN 29797
Re-animated corpses. Stolen purses. Plane crashes. Homicidal identity thieves. Gossipy socialites. Post-apocalyptic cannibals. No, it's not Introduction to TV—it's Introduction to Fiction. Spanning three centuries and three continents, this course will enable students to understand and analyze the fundamental characteristics of fiction—everything from the plot-story distinction to different types of narration—and to consider how these elements help to shape meaning. In addition, we will also consider how fiction shapes broader social and political questions: Are new scientific or technological advances always good? Was the “American Dream” ever achievable? Is stability possible in the aftermath of 9/11? Above all, we'll think about how fiction serves as a storehouse of attitudes for how we want to live our lives.
ENGL 2307 Introduction to Fiction: Monstrously Monstrous Monsters
ENGL 2307.005 (MWF 11:00-11:50am) CRN 29667
ENGL 2307.010 (MWF 12:00-12:50pm) CRN 29695
Instructor: Bernadette Russo
Ever wonder about monsters? What constitutes the monstrous? Perhaps a more disturbing question is to ask why they exist? What roles do they fill in a society? Through this course, we will explore these and other questions regarding monsters and monstrosity through various texts from different cultures and ethnicities.
English 2307 Introduction to Fiction
Dr. John Samson
Section 009 (MWF 11:00-11:50am) CRN 55112 &
Section 014 (MWF 2:00-2:50pm) CRN 29731
We will begin with short stories concerning American history and culture, from two different times and perspectives: the 19th- and 21st-centuries, and Anglo-American and African-American. These will also introduce two divergent styles of fiction, traditional and experimental. Then we will explore late-20th-century diverse cultures: Indian-American, Latinx-American, and Native-American. Texts: Nathaniel Hawthorne, Selected Stories; John Edgar Wideman, American Histories; Jhumpa Lahiri, Interpreter of Maladies; Sandra Cisneros, Woman Hollering Creek; and Sherman Alexie, Reservation Blues.
ENGL 2310.001 Introduction to Literature, Social Justice, and the Environment
Dr. Mike Lemon(TR 11:00 – 12:20 PM) CRN 57450
As these images from Lake Powell – a manmade reservoir across the Arizona-Utah border – depict, "nature" is never too far away from human intervention. In this course, students will investigate how definitions of nature intersect with race, socioeconomic class, and gender. They will interrogate these two questions: "What is nature?" and "What is humanity's responsibility to the natural world and to each other?" Course materials will include essays, novels, and Instagram accounts. Some texts may include selections from The Colors of Nature (2011), selections from City Wilds (2002), Toni Morrison's Song of Solomon (1977), and Ana Castillo's So Far From God (1993).
ENGL 2311 Introduction to Technical Writing
Offered both Onsite & Online
Technical writing is kind of misnomer for what we will do in this class. Writing is certainly involved; however, so is utilizing design, image, media, and other communication skills. We will learn to communicate effectively by using strategies closely linked to the workplace. Most importantly, we will think about writing and communication differently from how you may have considered them in the past: we will learn to view technical writing as a means for solving problems. We will use writing and documents to "get work done," whatever your field or discipline.
ENGL 2322 Global Literature II
Dr. Nesrine Chahine
Section 001 (R 6:00-8:50pm) CRN 57511
Section D01 (R 6:00-8:50pm) CRN 57937
From the "global war on terror," to global warming and global recessions, the global has been recently linked to various catastrophes that often seem disparate and sudden. This course examines modern and contemporary works that highlight the cultural memory and legacies of empire with the on-going emergence of globalization. We will consider the ways in which authors from around the world struggle to re-write, and thereby, redefine, their respective localities and cultures. How do their texts grapple with our increasingly globalized economies and lives? What do they teach us about the longer history of the present era of globalization? Readings may include, but are not limited to, literary texts by E.M. Forster, Joseph Conrad, Naguib Mahfouz, Ghassan Kanafani, Laila Lalami, and Kamila Shamsie as well as documentary films such as Mai Iskander's Garbage Dreams.
English 2324.001 British Literature II
(MWF 2:00-2:50 PM) CRN 60682
This course provides students with a general overview of British Literature, beginning with the late eighteenth century and progressing through to the twentieth century. Students will read poetry, prose, and fiction from the Romantic, Victorian, and Modern periods, about man's relationship to nature, the dangers of technology, the problems with child labor, the struggles for gender equality, and many other subjects. This is a writing-intensive course, designed to give students extensive practice in writing critical essays about literature. Through reading, discussing, and writing about texts, students will build close reading skills, engage in both formal and thematic analysis of literary texts, learn the proper citation of texts, and develop the kind of critical vocabularies essential to successful participation in the English major. All students will be responsible for participating in class discussion, completing and revising writing assignments, and reading and commenting on each other's writing.
Prerequisite: ENGL 1301, 1302.
ENGL 2326.001 American Literature II
Dr. Cordelia Barrera
(TR 8:00-9:20am) CRN 60683
Identity & Community in the American West focuses on issues arising from the diverse groups of settlers who moved West during the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Themes include: the American West as a landscape where Euro-American, Mexican, and Native American cultures meet, mix, and blur cultural and ideological boundaries; interactions, confrontations, and conflicts between homesteaders, ranchers, and indigenous peoples; and the idea of American ideologies such as the American Dream and Manifest Destiny which have helped shape a distinctly American identity. As we consider how the West functions as a symbol for the nation through fiction, non-fiction, and film in American literature from the Civil War period to the present, we will focus on landscape, social and environmental justice, shifting gender roles, race and ethnicity, and the development of the idea of the West in the American experience.
ENGL 2371.002 Language in Multicultural America
Dr. Aaron Braver
(MWF 1:00-1:50pm) CRN 55246
Language does more than just convey facts - it carries a great deal of social information, too. This course examines the relationship between language and social interaction in the United States. We will look at how variables like group membership, racial, gender, and sexual identity, power asymmetries, and other social dynamics impact the way people speak and also the way people interpret what they hear. We will also look at the ways in which language affects politics/policy and vice versa. In addition to course readings and lectures, we will be doing hands-on data collection, learning the methods involved in gathering sociolinguistic data, forming and testing hypotheses, and analyzing evidence from a variety of sources. Specific topics we will cover include the "Observer's Paradox," regional identity (especially Texan identity), official languages, sex and gender, and languages in politics.
*This class fulfills the multicultural requirement.*
ENGL 2383.160 Bible as Literature
Dr. David Roach
(TR 9:30-10:50 am) CRN: 56403
"Till heaven and earth pass," Jesus declared, "not one jot or tittle shall pass from the law," and two thousand years later, the Bible continues to be read, studied, and taught in cultures across the world. Yet the Bible is in fact composed of many different books, and our objective over the course of the semester is to learn about the genres and styles of scriptural writing. We will explore such genres as Jewish epic, history, Paul's letters, and wisdom literature, and we will discuss topics like covenant, grace, sacrifice, redemption, mercy, justice, and service. Examining the Bible's beautiful language, brilliant imagery, and fascinating symbolism offers us an exciting, new way of understanding the most popular book in human history.
ENGL 2388.160 Introduction to Film Studies
Dr. Wyatt Phillips
Lecture: ENGL 2388.160 (MW 11:00-11:50pam) CRN 56364
Discussion: 701 (F 9-9:50am) CRN 56367
Discussion: 702 (F 10-10:50am) CRN 56368
Discussion: 703 (F 11-11:50am) CRN 56369
Discussion: 704 (F 11-11:50am) CRN 56370
Discussion: 705 (F 11-11:50am) CRN 56371
Discussion: 706 (F 1-1:50pm) CRN 56372
As regular moviegoers and avid binge-watchers, we intuitively respond to the "grammar," of film. Our pulse quickens when the monster nears its hapless victim; we get lumps in our throats when the hero finally wins the heart of the one s/he loves. But how exactly do films make us laugh, cry, and scream? The course draws on examples from U.S. and global cinema in order to explore the film techniques that produce such complex effects—we'll cover everything from mise-en-scene to cinematography, from editing to sound. Then we will build on those fundamentals to consider different modes of cinema such as narrative, documentary, and experimental. Ultimately, the course asks what distinguishes film from all the other arts, and what makes this "Seventh Art" at once so conceptually rich and so potentially deceptive. Popcorn not included.
English 2391.004 Introduction to Literary Studies
Dr. Marjean D. Purinton
(TR 12:30-1:50pm) CRN 31520
In this course, we will identify and practice foundational skills essential to writing textual criticism and literary analysis. We will conduct close readings across literary periods and genres. We will employ the language of literary analysis, terms specific out our field. We will learn the citation style standard for our field—Modern Language Association (MLA). We will engage in class discussions and in group work. Our learning activities will include short essays and peer-reviewing workshops. In this class, you will encounter a process-driven, feminist pedagogy that invites you to participate in your own discovery experience. Among our readings, you will find Louise Erdrich's novel The Round House, William Shakespeare's tragedy Othello, Lorraine Hansberry's play A Raisin in the Sun, Susan Glaspell's play Trifles, Virginia Woolf's nonfiction A Room of One's Own, Charlotte Perkins Gilman's short story "The Yellow Wallpaper," Kate Chopin's short story "The Story of an Hour," and various poems by Emily Dickinson, William Wordsworth, Mary Robinson, Robert Browning, Robinson Jeffers, Tracy K. Smith, Joy Harjo, and others.
ENGL 2391.D01 Introduction to Literary Studies: Science Fiction Storyworlds
Dr. Bruce Clarke
*Online* (W 6:00-8:50) CRN 61184
In this science fiction-themed section of Introduction to Literary Study, we will look at the literary art of world building. Each of these narratives takes its reader somewhere beyond the known world. Some take place on water worlds devoid of land; another on a planet all sand, devoid of oceans; still another on a planet where ice and snow never recede. One story takes place inside a living vessel enormous enough to contain a simulated Earth environment complete with rivers and rain forests; another story takes place inside an ecologically diverse generation ship bound for a planet orbiting a nearby star. In these storyworlds, the human characters encounter androids and AIs with real feelings, or extraterrestrial beings who seem almost but not quite human, or grotesque yet intelligent aliens in search of meaningful relationships. As we touch down on these fictional worlds and their denizens, we will also study narrative techniques for carefully describing how these stories work as literary fictions, through different kinds of narrators, different perspectives and points of view, different discursive structures, and different approaches to time, space, life, and technology.
Texts: Stanislaw Lem, Solaris; Ursula Le Guin, The Left Hand of Darkness; Frank Herbert, Dune; Philip K. Dick, Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?; Octavia Butler, Dawn; Joan Slonczewski, A Door into Ocean; Kim Stanley Robinson, Aurora.
Assignments: one class report, two short essays, a term paper, and a midterm and final exam.
ENGL 3302 Anglo-Saxon Literature: Learning and Literature in England Before 1066
Dr. Brian McFadden
Section 001 (M 6:00 – 8:50pm) CRN 31530
Section D01 (M 6:00-8:50pm) CRN 60847
"Till heaven and earth pass," Jesus declared, "not one jot or tittle shall pass from the law," and two thousand years later, the Bible continues to be read, studied, and taught in cultures across the world. Yet the Bible is in fact composed of many different books, and our objective over the course of the semester is to learn about the genres and styles of scriptural writing. We will explore such genres as Jewish epic, Jesus' parables, Paul's letters, and wisdom literature, and we will discuss topics like grace, sacrifice and the scapegoat, redemption, mercy, justice, service, and religious environmentalism. Examining the Bible's beautiful language, brilliant imagery, and fascinating symbolism offers us an exciting, new way of understanding the most popular book in human history.
English 3305 British Renaissance Literature: Introduction to Shakespeare
Dr. Matthew Hunter
(TR 2:00-3:20pm) CRN 49622
Shakespeare's career begins with a story of frustrated love, and since the publication of the Venus and Adonis in 1593, there has perhaps been no subject more central to Shakespeare's works than love. This course will introduce students to Shakespeare's dramaturgy by examining Shakespeare's shifting depictions of love--love before marriage, love within families, love between friends, and love between enemies. Is loving another the same as knowing another? What is the difference between love and desire? Is there a right way to love? What is the dividing line between amour fou and a bad romance? These questions will preoccupy us throughout the term Major texts will include Romeo and Juliet, Othello, King Lear, and Antony and Cleopatra.
ENGL 3312: Women in Film History
Dr. Allison Whitney
(MWF 9:00-9:50pm) CRN 57534
This course will examine the work of women in the cinema, including an international selection of directors, as well as professionals in every part of film production: actors, editors, costume designers, and technological innovators. With case studies ranging from the 1890s to the present day, students will discover how feminist historiography has challenged dominant narratives about the cinema's evolution as a medium, while also learning how to conduct their own historical research. We will consider women's work in many modes and genres of filmmaking, including documentary, animation, and experimental film, while also considering the history of women as film viewers and creators of film culture.
ENGL 3311 British Victorian Literature
Dr. Bruce Clarke
Section 001 (T 6:00-8:50pm) CRN 57459
Section D01 (T 6:00-8:50pm) CRN 60697
In England during the reign of Queen Victoria, the manifold stresses of imperialism and modernization threw many peculiar shadows. The British literary works we will read this semester capture a number of these shadier hues. A misunderstood monster pieced together from cadavers. A doomed romance with a dark lover. An explorer who discovers the underground world of an advanced civilization. A scientist who transforms himself into a murderous hedonist. Another scientist who visits the far future and returns with a flower. Still another scientist who hunts vampires through hypnosis. A colonial adventurer who puts shrunken heads on fence posts. Paying particular attention to the onset of Charles Darwin's theory of evolution at mid-century, we will study what makes these novels tick as works of literature through an introduction to narrative theory, while building an informed picture of the wider culture producing these weird tales of the fantastic, wondrous, and horrendous.
Texts: Mary Shelley, Frankenstein; Emily Bronte, Wuthering Heights; Edward Bulwer-Lytton, The Coming Race; Robert Louis Stevenson, Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde; H. G. Wells, The Time Machine; Bram Stoker, Dracula; Joseph Conrad, Heart of Darkness.
ENGL 3313 Film Studies: The Truth is Out There? – UFOs in Lubbock and Global Sci-fi Cinema
(TR 12:30-1:50pm) CRN 57536
In September 2019, the US Navy confirmed that blurred footage taken by military pilots featured UFOs (Unidentified Flying Objects). These unprecedented confirmations recall Lubbock's own under-explored history with mysterious figures flying in the sky. In the 1951, floating lights appeared over the city. Dubbed "The Lubbock Lights," they were chronicled by Texas Tech scientists and investigated by the government. The lights disturbed all who claimed to see them. One old Larissa farmer told an investigator that "despite the range wars, Indians and stagecoaches [he had experienced], he had been scared."
This course on global science fiction cinema aims to understand the role of conspiracy and paranoia. We ask: what comfort do conspiracy theories offer in troubling times saturated with fake news? How do they provide a way of looking that allows citizens to see beyond the state's "official" stories? Combining theories on conspiracy with those related to cultural trauma, this course investigates the unspoken histories of both Lubbock and different cultures. Our gaze will move from stories of alien invasion in Japan (Before We Vanish by Kiyoshi Kurosawa) to metaphors for the discrimination of Apartheid in South Africa (District 9 by Neill Blomkamp). We will watch a story about a Syrian refugee as a Superman (Jupiter's Moon by Kornél Mundruczó) and read tales where the madness of China's bloody Cultural Revolution echoes the madness of discovering extraterrestrial life (Three Body Problem by Liu Cixin). These films and novels provide a thorough introduction to the global science fiction genre. Moreover, they will equip us to better engage with Lubbock's past when we plunge into the Texas Tech University Library's archives to understand a key moment of UFO mass sighting (or mass delusion?). Ultimately, students will learn the tools to write persuasive research papers about conspiracy—the estranging and powerful sight that looks up to the sky and believes that somewhere 'the truth is out there.'
ENGL 3325 Modern and Contemporary American Literature: Race and the Immigrant Experience in American Comic Books
Dr. Mike Lemon
(Online |R 6:00 – 8:50 PM) CRN 60848
From their inception to Action Comics #1 and beyond, comics creators – often second-generation immigrants – have explored race relations and the immigrant experience. Through this course, students will learn to read comics, identify genres within the medium (superhero, historical fiction, auto/biography, YA, horror), and analyze how immigrant and transnational creative teams respond to shifting cultural responses to immigration and race. In addition to scholarly articles in comics studies, texts may include Action Comics (DC, 1938), A Contract with God (Baronet Books, 1978), Superman: Birthright (DC, 2003-2004), American Born Chinese (First Second, 2006), Ms. Marvel (Marvel, 2014), Bitch Planet (Image, 2014-2015), Infidel (Image, 2018), and They Called Us Enemy (Top Shelf, 2019)
ENGL 3335: Ancient and Medieval World Literature: The Epic Tradition
Dr. Ryan Hackenbracht
(MWF 9:00 am-9:50 am) CRN 60691
Epic poetry has fascinated Western civilization for millennia. More than any other genre, it has stood the test of time but also evolved, adapting itself to new cultures and times. Covering three historical periods—ancient Greece, imperial Rome, and medieval Europe—we will consider how, from Homer's warriors to Dante's sinners in hell, epic probes the depths of what it means to be human, to desire or exercise power, to endure violence but inflict it on others, and to become, if possible, better people than we were the day before.
Assignments will include an annotated bibliography and 12-page research paper. Readings will include: Homer's Iliad, Hesiod's Works and Days, Virgil's Aeneid, Ovid's Metamorphoses, Augustine's Confessions, Dante's Inferno, and T. H. White's The Once and Future King.
ENGL 3342: Travel, Migration, and Literature: The Return of the Prodigals
Dr. Roger McNamara
*Online* (W 6:00-8:50pm) CRN 61401
There is plenty of literature about immigration, of people leaving their beloved homelands and traveling to new countries either as refugees, for better jobs, or to further their education. However, this course will focus on the literature about immigrants and their descendants returning home. In some cases these homelands are real—for instance, when the children of immigrants to the U.S. return to the Dominican Republic or Sri Lanka. In other cases, these homelands are imagined. For example, when descendants of slaves (Black Africans) and indentured laborers (Indians) return to Nigeria or India. What is the experience of these children and the descendants—or "prodigals"—who return home? How do they interact with the people who have remained in their places of origin? Are they "insiders" returning to the "motherland" or are they always "outsiders" who are "Westernized"? And why do they return home? Is it a return to their roots, to help what they think to be impoverished nations and people, or for mundane and regular jobs.
In exploring this literature, we'll be looking at prodigals situated in countries ranging from the U.S. and the U.K to Nigeria, India, and Sri Lanka. We'll conclude with a text that explores "prodigals" in science fiction.
ENGL 3350: Topics in Book History and Digital Humanities
(TR 11:00-12:20 PM) CRN 60692
Have you ever judged a book by its cover? It's okay – we all do it! In this course, we will actively learn why and how it might be valuable and interesting to judge books by their covers, pages, and typefaces – as well as how these material facts fit into the larger history of how humans make and use texts. We'll begin with an overview of material text production across history and cultures, examining early writing and publishing technologies. We'll move through the transition from scribal to print cultures and the hand press period, through the nineteenth-century industrialization of print, and end with digital texts and the internet. Students learn about the relationships between texts and their material embodiments, from stone to screen, papyrus to paper, codex to Kindle. A primary principle of this course will also be learning by doing in a hands-on way. Students will produce prints in the English department Letterpress Studio, as well as bind a book—learning about some of the stages of textual production. The course is the foundational course in the undergraduate minor in Book History and Digital Humanities.
ENGL 3351 Creative Writing: Fiction
Dr. Katie Cortese
(MWF 2:00-2:50PM) CRN 55214
This course is for people who like to read and write stories, and want to share and critique their own work in a large-group format. In addition to writing short works of fiction, we'll read and discuss stories and craft essays by such authors as Roxane Gay, Tommy Orange, Randa Jarrar, Karen Russell, Gish Jen, and more. As we learn to read, write, and critique short stories, we'll broaden our understanding of what it means to be human in a diverse, changing, and interconnected world.
Required Texts: Flash Fiction Forward ed. by James Thomas and Robert Shapard & Bird by Bird by Anne Lamott.
This course fulfills the multicultural requirement.
ENGL 3351 Creative Writing: Poetry
Section 004 (T 6:00-8:50pm) CRN 60698
Section D04 (T 6:00-8:50pm) CRN 60699
Well, write poetry, for God's sake, it's the only thing that matters—e. e. cummings.
I'm a political poet—let us say a 'human' poet, a poet that's concerned with the plight of people who suffer. If words can be of assistance, then that's what I'm going to use—Juan Felipe Herrara
Both quotes by cummings and Herrara speak to the belief that that poetry has always been necessary to human beings as individuals and as cultures or communities. Or, as William Carlos Williams so famously said: "It is difficult to get the news from poems yet men die miserably every day for lack of what is found there." So, poetry's necessity to human beings will be both implicit and affirmed daily in this workshop course which will focus on building a poetry toolbox for those who love, are intrigued or even scared by poetry. How will we do this? By looking closely at central tools of craft. These include the line in relation to the sentence or sentences that make up a poem. And within each line and each sentence are words. Therefore, we must become wordsmiths. Looking closely at poetry involves listening closely to understand the tools (rhyme, alliteration, stresses...) that make poems sing. Into the poetry toolbox will be all that goes into a poem's ability to stretch the imagination and the sense of what is possible. In this way, we will discover (or affirm) how and why poetry can connect us with other human beings (and sometimes with other sentient beings) in ways that no other literary genre can.
Central to the daily work of the semester are reading, writing, and revision. Therefore, plan to be brilliantly present to discuss your own and your fellow poets' work as well as to discuss the poems assigned and those you discover. Plan to write. A lot. Plan to read widely, recklessly and voraciously. Among the poets we will read in English and occasionally in translation are Robert Hayden, Tracy K. Smith, Paul Muldoon, Marie Howe, Natasha Trethewey, Juan Felipe Herrara, Charles Simic, Elizabeth Bishop, Emily Dickinson, John Keats, Paul Celan, e. e. cummings, Stanley Plumly & James Wright.
ENGL 3351 Creative Writing Nonfiction: Writing about Illness
Dr. Tomas Morin
(TR 8:00-9:20am) CRN 31673
A patient waits in an examination room. A doctor enters with a set of general questions. The patient's responses are part of a larger story, a story that is often unexpressed or unheard. This traditional model of examination, and diagnosis, is flawed because it often leads to a failure to recognize the story of illness that a person carries inside them. In this class we will examine the ways in which stories of illness have been told in order to better practice the art of illness as storytelling. We will read Susan Sontag, Joshua Cody's memoir [sic], and other assorted works./p>
English 3360 Issues in Composition: Learning to Think Different(ly)
Section 002 (W 6:00-8:50pm) CRN 31703
Section D02 (W 6:00-8:50pm) CRN 31701
Everyone these days is talking buzzwords: Critical Thinking. Thinking Outside the Box. Growth Mindset. Twenty-first Century Skills.
So what, exactly, does it take to communicate/think successfully today?
Do you feel prepared?
If you're like most students, you've learned to develop written arguments and to critically analyze written forms. Even in computer-mediated classrooms, writing, imaging, and various forms of multimedia authoring are usually taught as discrete skills—separate from writing/communicating.
Yet we live in an undeniably multimediated world, a world where image and sound are at least as important as the written word. Concerned that we not lock our students into single modes of expression, limiting their learning by constraining the tools they use and the media in which they deliver information, this course is designed to encourage you to explore some of the issues in composition/communication that will allow you to think/present your thinking "differently".
We will begin (and end) our process of exploring what it means to communicate effectively by doing some hefty self-analysis. Next, we'll look at our toolbox of communicating, perhaps trying to expand upon/strengthen what you're "good" at. Next, we'll try our hands at something different: communicating using different media. Finally, we'll circle back to narrative and its import in communication, and you'll create a narrative podcast.
ENGL 3363 Introduction to Science WritingDr. Scott Weedon
Section 001 (M 6:00-8:50pm) CRN 56246
Section D01 (M 6:00-8:50pm) CRN 57640
Science is the systematic study, documentation, and prediction of our universe. In order for scientists to be heard and for scientific knowledge to be believed, scientists have to communicate their findings, they have to write. The necessity of communication, collaboration, and persuasion mean that science is a deeply social activity. Scientific language does powerful and important work in our world, making trustworthy claims about what is valuable, safe, clean, better, concerning, and factual. Professionals who write about science take on a great responsibility for shaping how others will understand or adopt ideas and technologies.
The course examines two modes of science communication:
1. How scientists as professionals and researchers present problems, methods, data, and findings to disciplinary and interdisciplinary audiences through genres like research papers, grant proposals, poster presentations, patent applications, and technical reports.
2. How scientists as professionals and researchers explain and contextualize problems, methods, data, and findings to publics and non-expert audiences through genres like popular descriptions, testimony, creative nonfiction, interviews, impact statements, and risk communication.
ENGL 3365 Professional Report Writing
Multiple instructors/times available
Offered both onsite and online
Preparation of professional and academic reports and publications through the use of communication analysis. This class will look at reports in society and the workplace.
ENGL 3365.016: Professional Report Writing
Dr. Ken Baake
(TR 3:30-4:50pm) CRN 56160
This English course examines the work place documents that create knowledge and support decision-making—proposals and reports. Proposals seek approval or funding for a plan or activity. Reports provide information on the feasibility or progress of such activities, or on the status of scientific research. Proposals and reports emerge from real rhetorical situations or exigencies. They are examples of rhetorical genres, or strategies available for social action.
Our class will consider information reports, analytical reports, feasibility studies, recommendation reports, and empirical research reports. We will consider proposals as part of the document cycle that leads to reports. As students in the class, you will research and write a report about some decision you are facing in your lives—for example, one involving technology, such as what kind of car to buy; one involving career, such as how to prepare for a certain job; or one involving some other personal decision, such as the nutritional value of a diet you are considering The goal is to explore how the techniques of report research and writing can be applied to everyday decisions we face at home or on the job.
ENGL 3365.010 Professional Report WritingDr. Rob Grace
(TR 9:30-10:50am) CRN 31714
Professional Report Writing prepares students to write effectively in their future line of work. This course introduces students to genres and conventions of workplace writing and provides instruction on how to write clearly, concisely, and purposefully when drafting reports to inform professional audiences. Throughout the course, students will lead an iterative writing project in which they will plan, research, draft, and revise a report to help decision-makers address a real-world problem. Overall, this course provides students with opportunities to improve their writing abilities and become better writers in their current or expected profession.
ENGL 3366: Style
Section 001 (R 6:00-8:50pm) CRN 57905 &
Section D01 (R 6:00-8:50pm) CRN 49631
This course focuses on effective writing style. It will cover topics such as developing an effective and personal voice, avoiding overwriting and underwriting, choosing effective and fresh words, avoiding clichés, choosing and foregrounding clear subjects and lively verbs, naming definite actors and actions, making sentences connect, assigning emphasis, controlling rhythm, achieving grammatical variety, and applying general principles of effective writing in both text-based and non-text based contexts. We will also read and discuss arguments about writing style (both scholarly and otherwise), examining the politics and values that style communicates. We'll observe how style shapes what can be said and to whom, and describe how different styles suit different audiences. We will have numerous opportunities to analyze the work of professional writers, analyze our own writing style, adapt writing for multiple situations and audiences, and develop a personal style of writing.
ENGL 3369.001 Information Design
Dr. Jason Tham
(TR 12:30-1:50pm) CRN 52487
This course covers principles of visual design to help designers effectively organize and present information across interfaces, such as print, small to mid-sized mobile devices, and conventional websites. Students will learn strategies to create user-friendly interfaces, including key lessons in typography, information architecture, layout, color, and more. Students will explore particular issues that arise in new device contexts, such as wearable and responsive interfaces. Students will apply these design principles within different industries, including academic, scientific, technological, and general business contexts.
ENGL 3371.001 How Language Works
Dr. Aaron Braver
(MWF 2:00-2:50pm) CRN 49633
What does it mean to have a command of language—do animals have it? Infants?
By examining the structures of the world's languages, we will discover why linguists believe in a "universal grammar" in spite of the world's rich linguistic diversity.
We'll also learn how to make the sounds of the world's languages—from the clicks of Africa's Bantu languages to Native American ejective consonants.
This course is suited to anyone interested in language, how the mind works, or the characteristics that make us uniquely human.
ENGL 3388: Star Wars and Media Culture
Dr. Allison Whitney
(MWF 10-10:50 am) CRN 32229
This course will offer a survey of methods and issues in media studies using the Star Wars franchise as the central object of study. Students will draw upon over four decades of Star Wars transmedia texts to learn approaches to textual analysis, sound studies, adaptation, film music, media archaeology, material culture and ephemera, industrial history, and fan culture. In addition to the Star Wars films, students will study radio plays, comic books, toys and games, actors' star personae, costume and production design, and primary sources such as industrial patents and oral histories.
ENGL 3391 Vietnam War Literature
Dr. Yuan Shu
(TR 9:30-10:50am) CRN 60704
In American popular culture, Vietnam has usually been represented as a war rather than a country with history and culture. Now forty-four years after the fall of Saigon on April 30, 1975, how should we move beyond the Hollywood representation and cultivate new understandings of the conflict, the country, and the people?
This course aims to offer a balanced view of the war from the diverse perspectives of former American soldiers and nurses, of former North and South Vietnamese soldiers, as well as of Vietnamese immigrants and refugees. We begin by investigating how American veterans with different political views reflect upon their own experiences in Vietnam and the meanings of the war. Moreover, in reading various accounts of the war from the North and South Vietnamese perspectives, we reconsider how the war has impacted the Vietnamese culture and society. We conclude by examining the experiences of Vietnamese immigrants in North America and their negotiation with Western concepts such as democracy, freedom, and individualism. We explore different genres that encompass fiction, drama, poetry, film, song lyric, and oral history, and discuss different authors with diverse racial, gender, class, sexual, and cultural backgrounds.
English 4312 Studies in Drama: Cinderella StoriesDr. Matthew Hunter
(TR 3:30-4:50pm) CRN 60693
How do we fit into the world? Although the myth of the self-made man might suggest otherwise, every Cinderella has a fairy godmother who imparts upon them everything she needs to become the shining light of the ball. Ranging from the Renaissance to the present day, this course looks at stories of transformation—call them "Cinderella stories"—in which outsiders turn themselves into insiders thanks to the guidance of a companion who is already in the know. Usually through some sort of makeover, these well-meaning friends teach the heroines and heroes of the Cinderella story how to master the unspoken codes and conventions of their particular society: how to speak, how to dress, how to comport themselves, how to play the part of a man or a woman, even how to love. As their insiders teach outsiders how to fit in, Cinderella stories lift the veil on social relations, showing us how they are built up out of commodified goods and ingrained practices. Their happy endings accordingly bear within them the lesson that Madonna made into a song: that we are all living in a material world.
Our readings in this course will focus on the Renaissance, where Cinderella stories flourish in no small part because the Renaissance was a period of radical "self-fashioning." Books on good manners, good speech, and good style flourished during this time, fostering the believe that any nobody could become a somebody if they just learned how to talk the right talk. But our discussions will also require us to consider how Cinderella stories get picked up in later moments, including, especially, our own. Venturing out of the Renaissance, we will consider plays from the Victorian era, novels from the twentieth century, and films from the last two decades, in order to ask why we can never seem to let go of a fantasy that only rarely is fulfilled.
ENGL 4315 Studies in Film: Selling Multiculturalism: Commercial Cinema, Multicultural Aesthetics, Conventional MainstreamsENGL 4315.D01 Studies in Film
Dr. Scott Baugh
(M 6:00-8:50pm) CRN 60705
Contemporary marketing specialists like Guy Garcia have described the emergence of a "new mainstream" that merges traditional & multicultural markets. What consequences and even contradictions occur for such new mainstreams? How does a wide range of popular & commercially successful feature films—like Black Panther, Gravity, The Revenant, A Star Is Born, Bohemian Rhapsody, and many more—operate within and appeal to these markets? Are these contemporary releases part of something genuinely "new," and how do they compare with older commercial-arts patterns and political contours of multiculturalism? In this class we will begin with a concise introduction to film studies and some approaches to reading movies. Students with no previous coursework in film studies but a vigorous interest in learning are welcome! With a steep learning curve, we will then consider these questions alongside cinema's conventions, industrial standards, marketing trends, and business models to focus especially on what a select body of films offers us as viewers, "film studies readers," and smart consumers.
This section will meet online in synchronous meetings 6-8.50pm (cst) on Mondays in Spring 2020.
English 4321.001 Studies in Literary Topics – Victorian Monster Fiction
Dr. Alison Rukavina
(MWF 12:00-12:50pm) CRN 32264
The late nineteenth century was a time of rapid social change, and Victorian authors explored the impact of social, political, and cultural transformations on mankind in an emerging new subgenre—monster fiction. A subgenre related to the gothic, monster fiction examines human or supernatural monsters as a consequence of modernity as well as a societal threat. Victorian monsters revealed something about the world that produced them and while the genre like its gothic forbearer evokes a sensation of dread, terror, and suspense, it is also a social critique of the period. H.G. Wells' The Invisible Man examines science's role in society and the ethics and moral responsibilities of a scientist. The monster in the novel is science's creation yet in another text the monster is the scientist, as one finds in Robert Louis Stevenson's The Strange Case of Jekyll and Hyde. In Oscar Wilde's The Picture of Dorian Gray, the monster is both the man who is trapped by society's expectations and society itself. Monster fiction's horrifying protagonists and antagonists explore both the monstrous within and from without. Both Bram Stoker's Dracula and Richard Marsh's The Beetle are about the fear of the foreign other – where the vampire becomes an invading force that threatens not only the nation but also British masculinity. Students in the course will consider how late-nineteenth-century monster fiction engages with different types of Victorian monstrosity and monstrous behavior, as well as how the genre was a site of anxiety regarding technology, empire, race, and gender.
ENGL 4351 Creative Writing Nonfiction: Truth vs. Truth
Dr. Tomas Morin
Section 002 (W 6:00-8:50pm) CRN 57465
Section D02 (W 6:00-8:50pm) CRN 57934
What is the difference between the Truth and a truth? This is an important question to grapple with for anyone who wants to write creative non-fiction. Our era of "fake news" makes this question even more important. In this class we will examine how other non-fiction writers negotiate these truths in their writing. In addition to The Lifespan of a Fact by John D'Agata, we will also read The Circuit: A Tennis Odyssey by Rowan Ricardo Phillips, and other works.
ENGL 4365: Special Topics in Technical Communication: Crises in Digital Democracy: Fake News, Conspiracy Theories, Demagoguery, and Hate Speech OnlineDr. Michael Faris
Section 001 (T 6:00-8:50pm) CRN 51677
Section D01 (T 6:00-8:50pm) CRN 57906
In this class, we will explore questions and problems related to toxic online rhetoric. The last few years have seen a rise of incivility online, despite utopian beliefs in the early days of the Internet that it would be an inclusive site of democratic life. This class will particularly focus on four types of "toxic discourse": fake news, conspiratorial thinking, demagoguery, and hate speech. We will explore questions such as the following: What makes for healthy or productive public debate and rhetoric? How does fake news spread (and what constitutes fake news)? How can we confront fake news and disinformation? What roles do technologies play in the circulation of fake news? What is demagoguery and what does it look like? How does hate speech spread online? What role does paranoia and conspiratorial thinking play in online forums? What is trolling, why do people do it, and what effects does it have? What is the relationship between truth, goodwill, good faith, argumentation, and democracy? To explore these questions, we will read some rhetorical, political, and technological theory to help us understand these phenomena; explore case studies and examples together from popular (and not so popular) online sites like Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, blogs, reddit, and more; and explore together potential technological, social, and civic solutions to these problems. Students in the course will identify and research case examples of fake news, conspiracy theories, demagoguery, and hate speech online and write about these case examples in a variety of genres and media.
ENGL 4373.001 Studies in Linguistics: When Literature Meets Linguistics
Dr. Min-Joo Kim
(TR 9:30-10:50 AM) CRN 57466
What if William Shakespeare and Ferdinand de Saussure were best friends of each other? What would they have talked about over dinner or over a cup of tea? In this course, we will be looking at how to analyze literary works through the lens of linguistics. We will learn about authors' choices of certain lexical items, syntactic structures, and tense/aspect/mood markers as a way of creating a coherent discourse, and how they reflect workings of the underlying principles of human language and human thought.
Note: This course will require no prior knowledge of linguistics.
ENGL 4380 Professional Issues in Technical Communication
Dr. Craig Baehr
Section 001 (W 6:00-8:50pm) CRN 55720
Section D01 (W 6:00-8:50pm) CRN 45565
This advanced undergraduate capstone course covers professional issues, processes, and specializations in the field of technical communication, strategies for developing a professional dossier appropriate for entry-level employment, and preparation for certification in the field. The course will build on skills acquired in previous coursework and introduce you to project management processes and methods used in producing technical communication projects, including process maturity, content strategy development, and methods of tracking and assessment. Additionally, the course provides professional development through the introduction of various professional organizations and development strategies for professional portfolios and dossiers.
Coursework will involve the development of a professional portfolio, a pre-certification exam, and a group project.
*Requires permission from the undergraduate advisor – email email@example.com for assistance.