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Course Descriptions - Winter 2011

For the most up-to-date information, please consult the UW Time Schedule. Keep in mind that future course listings are tentative and subject to change.

Winter 2011


MTWThF 9:30am - 10:20am
SMI 305 - SLN: 11446
Instructor: Ileana Marin
GE Requirements Met: C, W

Comparative approach to literature and a workshop in writing comparative papers in English. Emphasis on cross-cultural comparison of literary works. Readings in English with an option to read selected texts in the original languages Offered: AWSp.


MTWThF 10:30am - 11:20am
MLR 302A - SLN: 11447
Instructor: Lin Chen
GE Requirements Met: C, W

Comparative approach to literature and a workshop in writing comparative papers in English. Emphasis on cross-cultural comparison of literary works. Readings in English with an option to read selected texts in the original languages Offered: AWSp.


MTWThF 11:30am - 12:20pm
MLR 302A - SLN: 11452
Instructor: Russell Black
GE Requirements Met: C, W

Comparative approach to literature and a workshop in writing comparative papers in English. Emphasis on cross-cultural comparison of literary works. Readings in English with an option to read selected texts in the original languages Offered: AWSp.


MTWThF 12:30pm - 1:20pm
MGH 295 - SLN: 11453
GE Requirements Met: C, W

Comparative approach to literature and a workshop in writing comparative papers in English. Emphasis on cross-cultural comparison of literary works. Readings in English with an option to read selected texts in the original languages Offered: AWSp.


MTWThF 1:30pm - 2:20pm
LOW 217 - SLN: 11454
Instructor: Artur Rosman
GE Requirements Met: C, W

Comparative approach to literature and a workshop in writing comparative papers in English. Emphasis on cross-cultural comparison of literary works. Readings in English with an option to read selected texts in the original languages Offered: AWSp.


MTWThF 4:30pm - 5:20pm
MGH 295 - SLN: 11455
Instructor: Nobuko Yamasaki
GE Requirements Met: C, W

Comparative approach to literature and a workshop in writing comparative papers in English. Emphasis on cross-cultural comparison of literary works. Readings in English with an option to read selected texts in the original languages Offered: AWSp.


MW 1:30pm - 3:20pm
KNE 220 - SLN: 11457
Department Requirements Met: Pre-req to Declare Literature Major
GE Requirements Met: VLPA

Surrealism, which emerged in Paris in the early 1920s from the social upheaval of post-WWI Europe and more especially from Dadaism, is arguably the most influential avant-garde movement of the 20th century. It rejected social, moral and logical conventions and sought to revolutionize art, literature, politics and life in the name of freedom, desire and the unconscious. Surrealist art, which was viewed by the surrealists as a means of liberation beyond purely aesthetic considerations, is characterized by a diversity of forms of expression: writing, painting, drawing, photography, film, collage, found objects, sculpture, theater; and of practices: automatic writing, hypnosis, and somnambulic strolling in the streets of Paris. We will study all these forms of expression and examine the challenges surrealism poses to traditional notions of art, literature and politics.

Readings: André Breton, Manifestoes of Surrealism; Communicating Vessels; Nadja; Louis Aragon, Paris Peasant.


MTWTh 11:30am - 1:20pm
KNE 110 - SLN: 11462
Instructor: Yomi Braester
Department Requirements Met: Pre-req to Declare Cinema Major
GE Requirements Met: VLPA

The mastermind behind the Beijing Olympics opening ceremony, Zhang Yimou, gained world fame for his martial arts movies, Hero and House of Flying Daggers. Twenty years earlier, Zhang was among the pioneers of the new Chinese cinema, with great works such as Raise the Red Lantern. The course follows the trajectory of one of the world's most fascinating filmmakers and asks, What makes a great director?


MTTh 5:30pm - 7:20pm
THO 101 - SLN: 11473
Instructor: Tamara Cooper
Department Requirements Met: Cinema Studies Core
GE Requirements Met: VLPA, W

This quarter we are going to consider the impact of Third Cinema on more contemporary work around the world. Fundamentally, third cinema is that of anti-colonial resistance emerging out of Latin America and Africa in the 1960s. It has had such enormous impact that each time film theorists declare its demise, new questions (which may actually be old questions) arise. We may or may not determine the declared death of Third Cinema premature. As such, ―Third Cinema: a Call to Action‖ begins by contextualizing the works of such anti-colonial filmmakers as Pontecorvo, Solonas, Rouch, Cisse and Sembene to revisit the significance of a Third lens.

We trouble the language and politics of Diaspora, imperfect, hybrid, creolized, transnational cinemas over time and space as these are taken up within the contexts of more contemporary queer, feminist, anti-racist and post-colonial cultural production. We ask what it means to claim inheritance of third cinema practice in contemporary First Nations film as well as that of Latino, African and Asian Diaspora within North America, and the U.K.


MW
JHN - SLN: 11474
Instructor: Jennifer M. Bean
Department Requirements Met: Cinema Studies Core
GE Requirements Met: VLPA

Film history from its beginnings in the 1890s through the golden era of silent film in the 1920s. Topics include the invention of major film techniques, the creation of Hollywood and the studios, and movements such as expressionism, constructivism, and surrealism.


MTWTh 11:30am - 1:20pm
THO 101 - SLN: 11475
Instructor: James Tweedie
Department Requirements Met: Cinema Studies Core
GE Requirements Met: VLPA

Covers the vast changes in filmmaking since 1960. Topics include the continuing influence of the French New Wave, the New German Cinema of the 70s and the "New Hollywood" of the 70s, American independent film of the 80s, and the resurgence of Chinese filmmaking since 1980.


MW
MGH - SLN: 11476
Instructor: Sudhir Mahadevan
Department Requirements Met: Cinema Studies Core
GE Requirements Met: VLPA

Is Bollywood all there is to Indian cinema? This course is an introduction to Indian cinema, or more appropriately, the many cinemas of India. Spend 10 weeks watching great Indian movie classics and new surprises - violent urban gangster films, morbidly humorous films about youth cyber culture, unlikely Shakespeare adaptations, Paris as an exotic and distant city, inventive new sports comedies, to name just a few themes.

Our introduction will be structured thematically around broad ideas - nationalism and Indian cinema; film and mass media; film and the urban experience; cinema and globalization; cinema as experimental and avant-garde art practice. Where possible, we will also explore the relation between film and other practices of image production - popular film posters, lithographed religious calendar images, photography, traveling slide show exhibitors.

Movies will be in Indian languages and subtitled in English. Titles include: LSD: Love Sex aur Dhoka (Love, Sex and Betrayal, 2010, English/Hindi); Satya (Truth, 1998, Hindi), Pyaasa (Thirst, 1957, Hindi/Urdu), Chennai 600028 (2008, Tamil), An Evening in Paris (1967, Hindi), Pather Panchali (Song of the Little Road, 1957, Bengali), Harishchandrachi Factory (Harishchandra's Factory, 2009, Marathi).

Course work includes two screenings and two lecture sessions a week. Readings will be drawn mainly from film studies but will include scholarship from other disciplines such as art history, anthropology, urban theory and sociology.

Grading will draw on short response papers, a longer term-end essay and participation.


MW 9:30am - 11:20am
SAV 131 - SLN: 11478
Instructor: Henry Staten
Department Requirements Met: Literature Core
GE Requirements Met: VLPA

Examination of the development of European literature in a variety of genres and periods. Possible areas of study include literature from romantic fiction of early nineteenth century through great realist classics of second half of the century or from symbolism to expressionism and existentialism.


MW 3:30pm - 5:20pm
SAV 132 - SLN: 11479
Instructor: Laura Eshleman
Department Requirements Met: Literature Core
GE Requirements Met: VLPA

Both travel and writing are journeys to where one isn‘t. Alternately said, literature and travel are means through which one comes to know oneself and the world. Traveling has always been closely tied to the act of writing, of narrating physical and mental displacements, crossings and arrivals. This course will examine the poetics and politics of narrated accounts of journeys to places, real or imaginary. The diversity of travel literature is immense, including examples of diaries and journals, poetry, novels, guide books, journalism, essays, official reports, autobiography, and even science fiction. The course will attempt to offer students an introduction to travel literature by examining an international selection of texts, ancient to recent, that highlight a constellation of issues associated with travel literature. Some course themes: truth, authorship, imperialism and decolonization, anxiety about borders, experience and memory, time, sex and gender, exploration and encounter, Self and Other, mobility, immigration, rhetoric and aesthetics, geography and space, the bildungsroman, symbol and allegory, language, historiography, fantasy, and the dissemination of knowledge. The course will probe the boundary between the discourse of travel and other kinds of writing, and examine the intimate relationships between travel, writing, imagination, and desire. In addition to generating critical writing on the subject of travel literature, students will also complete a practica in which they produce a piece of travel writing that responds to course themes. All texts in English or English translation.


MTWTh 11:30am - 12:20pm
DEN 313 - SLN: 11480
Instructor: Guntis I. Smidchens
Course Website
Department Requirements Met: Literature Elective
GE Requirements Met: VLPA

Survey of various genres of folk narratives studied in performance contexts to reveal their socio-cultural functions in a variety of milieux. Theory and history of folk narrative study, taxonomy, genre classification, and interpretative approaches. Recommended: SCAND 230 or C LIT 230.

Folk narratives (folktales, legends and jokes) are a window into a group's worldview. This course will survey the theory and history of folk narrative study, methods of classification, and interpretative approaches. (No required prerequisites for this course)


MW 9:30am - 11:20am
DEN 211 - SLN: 11481
Instructor: Míċeál Vaughan
Department Requirements Met: Literature Core
GE Requirements Met: VLPA

Medieval Legends of Good Women: At the end of the fourteenth century, the English poet Geoffrey Chaucer produced, among his last works, a collection of narratives he called "Seintes Legende of Cupide." Alternatively titled The Legend of Good Women, the collection contains stories about a dozen ancient women (and their men), e.g., Cleopatra, Dido, Thisbe, Medea, to mention a few. A close reading of the Legend reveals how Chaucer‘s late-medieval narratives about these classical heroines have been influenced by genres like the Christian saint‘s life and the traditions of so-called "courtly love." The tensions between the ideals of Christian hagiography and courtly romance lend a lively complexity to his stories, and to their interpretation.

This course will attempt to define these competing ideals by discussing literary examples from ancient times – in the Old Testament (e.g., the books of Ruth, Judith, and Esther) and Ovid‘s Heroides -- through the Middle ages, with its rich range of saints lives, retellings of Ovid, and classic works like the Romance of the Rose, Dante‘s Vita Nuova, and Boccaccio's Famous Women. After looking at Juan Ruiz's Book of Good Love, we‘ll turn to Chaucer's Legend (and perhaps some of his other works), and conclude with his near-contemporary, Christine de Pizan, esp. her Book of the City of Ladies.


MWF 1:30pm - 2:50pm
MEB 248 - SLN: 11482
Instructor: Jennifer E. Dubrow
Course Website
Department Requirements Met: Literature Elective
GE Requirements Met: VLPA, W

This course will introduce the modern literature of South Asia (India, Pakistan and Bangladesh) from the fifteenth century to the present. Focus will be on novels, short stories and poetry from various South Asian languages (read in translation). The first half of the course covers two novels by women authors, The Namesake by Jhumpa Lahiri and The Crooked Line by Ismat Chughtai. Both detail the coming-of-age of a young protagonist: a second-generation Bengali American coming to terms with his identity in 1980s America (The Namesake); and a young Muslim girl moving from village to city in pre-Independence north India (The Crooked Line). In the second half of the course, we turn to shorter and more complex literary forms: a selection of short stories on the 1947 Independence/Partition of India and Pakistan, followed by Moth Smoke, a recent allegorical novel on present-day Pakistan by Mohsin Hamid. After a brief unit on stories of morality and deception from R.K. Narayan‘s Malgudi Days, we conclude with examples of poetry from the Hindu devotional (bhakti) and Urdu classical lyric (ghazal) traditions. No background in South Asian literature or languages is presupposed. Class sessions will focus on discussion and analysis. Assignments will include close reading and short essay assignments; a group presentation; participation in class discussion; and a final paper.


MWF 11:30am - 12:20pm
SMI 205 - SLN: 11483
Instructor: Richard Block
Department Requirements Met: Literature Elective
GE Requirements Met: VLPA

What does it mean to seek equal status as a citizen when the primary marker of one‘s identity, that of being Jewish, is indicative of a dream to return to Zion? How does one demand of the other, the Jew, that (s)he become German when the very notion of ―Germanness‖ is vague, uncertain, and forever changing? These are the primary questions that will structure our discussions during the term. We will also be interested in the tragic trajectory that proposed solutions to these problems assumed. In other words, we will seek to understand why for Jews the eventual solution to their predicament in Germany was to abandon dreams of assimilation and argue for the birth of a Jewish state. Conversely, we will examine how religious anti-Semitism led to racial anti-Semitism and finally to genocidal anti-Semitism. That is, how for Germans the solution to the ―Jewish problem‖ became a final one: the extermination of all Jews from the globe.

The course will also pursue a second trajectory, namely, the messianic in Jewish thought. How does the coming of the messiah or the fact that he has not yet arrived affect the disposition Jews assume toward their own lives? How do they read history? How do they conceive of truth when truth is not yet revealed save through ritual law? And finally, what does revolution have to do with the Jewish notion of messianism?


MW 1:30pm - 3:20pm
SAV 168 - SLN: 19819
Instructor: José Alaniz
Department Requirements Met: Literature Elective
GE Requirements Met: VLPA

This course surveys graphic novels, newspaper strips, alternative publications, comic books and other media from the 19th century to 1960, the period when comic art entered its modern incarnation or "Golden Age." Among other topics, we will discuss the origins, aesthetics and definitional debates of the comics medium; comics‘ impact on American and world popular culture; the politics of categorizing art into "ages"; and attempts at comics censorship culminating in the 1954 US congressional subcommittee hearings on juvenile delinquency. Authors covered include George Herriman, Milton Caniff, Hergé, Yoshihiro Tatsumi, Bernard Krigstein, Winsor McCay, Richard F. Outcault, Charles Schultz, Jack Kirby, Will Eisner, Fletcher Hanks and Rodolphe Töpffer.


TTh 10:30am - 12:20pm
WFS 201 - SLN: 11484
Instructor: Tom Colonnese
Department Requirements Met: Cinema Studies Elective
GE Requirements Met: I&S, VLPA, W

Studies representations of American Indians in American films from 1900 to present. Examines the foundations of American Indian stereotypes and how Hollywood helped create and perpetuate those stereotypes. Activities include reading critical materials, and viewing, discussing, and writing critically about films by non-native directors.


MTWTh 1:30pm - 3:20pm
SIG 134 - SLN: 11485
Instructor: Albert Sbragia
Department Requirements Met: Cinema Studies Elective
GE Requirements Met: I&S, VLPA

The effort in France in the 1950s to define the cinematic director as the auteur or author of his/her films is the starting point for this course which seeks to introduce undergraduate students to post-war and contemporary European cinema through the films of the continent‘s most creative cineastes. The course will follow a loosely chronological trajectory and will examine the European directors preferred by the Cahiers critics, the French New Wave cinema, the questioning of auteurist cinema by directors in the early sixties, the Czech New Wave and New German Cinema of the sixties and seventies, the Dogme 95 cineastes, Almodovar and New Spanish Cinema, as well as more recent trends in European cinema. Course work includes weekly screenings, lectures and readings as well as a paper and examinations.


TT
LOW - SLN: 11486
Instructor: Eric Ames
Department Requirements Met: Cinema Studies Elective
GE Requirements Met: I&S, VLPA

This course explores the terrain of documentary cinema through the films of Werner Herzog from 1970 to the present. What defines documentary as both distinct from and related to fiction? How do Herzog and his films relate, historically, to the idea and the practice of documentary filmmaking? Each week we will view and discuss one of Herzog's films (including Fata Morgana, Land of Silence and Darkness, The Great Ecstasy of Woodcarver Steiner, Lessons of Darkness, Bells from the Deep, Little Dieter Needs to Fly, My Best Fiend, and Grizzly Man) along with one documentary made by another filmmaker (such as Jonathan Caouette, Robert Flaherty, Robert Gardner, Kazuo Hara, Errol Morris, Ulrich Seidl), asking what the various combinations tell us both about Herzog and about documentary cinema more generally. In English.


MW 3:30pm - 5:20pm
SAV 167 - SLN: 11494
Instructor: Laura Chrisman

PH.D. PROGRAM IN THEORY AND CRITICISM: POSTCOLONIAL LITERARY STUDIES

This class offers an introduction to the field of postcolonial literary studies: its development, aesthetic articulations, theoretical frameworks, major debates, and new directions. Rather than take 'post-colonial' as an unproblematic term, the course addresses the intellectual, aesthetic and material stakes involved in its deployment. We will investigate issues of colonial and imperial domination, decolonization movements, nationalism, neocolonialism, and globalization. We will explore early/mid 20th century theories of anti-colonial resistance, as well as theories associated with the institutional emergence of the field in the 1980s and also consider more recent developments and contestations of the field. Throughout the course the theoretical readings will be accompanied by creative literary readings; students are expected to develop the tools for placing literary and theoretical materials in productive conversation through careful close reading of both.


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