Theme: Motion and Emotion
now what were motionless move(exists no
miracle mightier than this:to feel)
The English word "emotion" has its root in the Latin expression "movement out," and in its contemporary meaning the word continues to imply the movement of the spirit, of agitation or excitement. For the Romance languages there is an etymological association, but the persistent linking of motion and emotion in literature worldwide suggests that these basic elements of human experience have a much deeper, more translatable connection. Vertigo, euphoria, dizziness, liberation, and nausea: all express this connection.
The goal of C Lit 240 is to hone your individual writing skills while also giving you the opportunity to grow as a critical reader. To this end, the course will examine an international selection of literary works using the themes of motion and emotion as a point of comparison for texts and as a starting point for composition. We will explore the metaphoric qualities of spatial movement or "the journey" for representing other types of migrations (emotional, national, social, etc). We will consider the effect of technologies of motion and cultural patterns of mobility on expression of emotion and mobility in literature. And finally we will address motion's counterpart, immobilization or stagnation, and its potential for emotional expression in literature.
Texts: Mary Shelley _Frankenstein_, Junichiro Tanizaki _Diary of a Mad Old Man_, Nella Larsen _Passing_, and a selection of critical writing, excerpts, short stories and poetry. Also, we will use the short edition of the expository
writing textbook _Acts of Inquiry_.