Spring 2023 Course Descriptions: Storrs Campus

Spring 2023

Each semester the faculty for the Department of English provide course descriptions that build upon the University's catalog descriptions. These individually crafted descriptions provide information about variable topics, authors, novels, texts, writing assignments, and whether instructor consent is required to enroll. The details, along with reviewing the advising report, will help students select course options that best meet one's interests and academic requirements.

The following list includes Undergraduate courses that are sequenced after the First-Year Writing requirement and will change each semester.

Honors Courses

Honors courses are limited to fifteen to twenty students in each section. They are open only to Honors students or with the consent of the instructor. This semester, we are offering:

2701-04 | TuTh 2:00-3:15 | Forbes, Sean


1000-Level Courses

1103W: Renaissance and Modern Western Literature

Prerequisites: ENGL 1007 or 1010 or 1011 or 2011.

1103W-01 | M 5:00-7:30 | Pelizzon, V. Penelope

In this course, we’ll spend time with some of the most fabulous poems, stories, and novels of the last 500 years. We’ll read works by Polish, Russian, Turkish, Greek, French, German, Mexican, American, and English authors. We’ll work chronologically backwards, beginning with recent writers whose historical context is more familiar, moving in reverse to periods where we’ll call on secondary materials to help ground our understanding of the issues at stake for each writer. Authors likely to appear on the syllabus include Constantine Cavafy, Nazim Hikmet, Gwendolyn Brooks, Paul Celan, Wisława Szymborska, Marina Tsvetaeva, Franz Kafka, Charles Baudelaire, Arthur Rimbaud, Anton Chekhov, Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz, Louise Labé, and William Shakespeare. Projects include weekly response writings as well as three revised papers of 5-6 pages each. 

1503: Introduction to Shakespeare

Prerequisites: None.

1503-01 | MWF 9:05-9:55 | Gallucci, Mary 


1616W: Major Works of English & American Literature

Prerequisites: ENGL 1007 or 1010 or 1011 or 2011.

1616W-01 | MWF 10:10-11:00 | Cordon, Joanne

Distressing Damsels 

This class will look at classic texts that present female characters who challenge the expectations of the worlds they live in, from small bits of defiance to more serious challenges to the way women are supposed to behave. As Carrie Fisher observes of her Star Wars character, Princess Leia: “I was not a damsel in distress. I was a distressing damsel.” Texts may include: Jane Austen’s Persuasion, Lewis Carroll’s Alice in Wonderland, Oscar Wilde’s The Importance of Being Earnest, Ernest Hemingway’s The Sun Also Rises, and August Wilson’s Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom. Course requirements include class discussion, lots of low-stakes writing, three essays.  


2000-Level Courses

2013W: Introduction to Writing Studies

Prerequisites: ENGL 1007 or 1010 or 1011 or 2011.

2013W-01 | MWF 12:20-1:10 | Barron, Kyle

This course serves as an introduction to writing as an ever-evolving field of inquiry that includes rhetorical analysis as well as the study of writing's social and ethical implications across diverse traditions, contexts, and technologies. Rather than focus on prescriptive (rule-based) approaches to writing, we will spend the semester learning all about writing—about persuasion, style, genre, and the all-important rhetorical situation (and how to apply rhetorical awareness to incoming and outgoing information streams). This course (a writing course about writing) will require a significant amount of writing. Some of the writing will be formal (academic essays, rhetorical analyses), some of the writing will be informal (journal entries, multimodal presentations), all of the writing will be awesome. The semester will culminate in the assembly of a final portfolio where you compile revised versions of the work you’ve already tackled.

2013W-02 | TuTh 2:00-3:15 | Buckner, Sophia

2055WE: Writing, Rhetoric, and Environment

Prerequisites: ENGL 1007 or 1010 or 1011 or 2011.

2055WE-01 | MWF 10:10-11:00 | Barron, Kyle

This course joins environmental literacy to writing and rhetoric both as a topic of study (how science and environmental issues get “written up” and communicated) and as a practice (how we might write about and grapple with environmental topics and movements, such as climate). We will explore numerous cross-disciplinary topics and inquiries including visual rhetoric, translation across disciplines and genres, dissemination of complex information to broad populations, scientific controversy, post-truth polemics, and the sustainability of consumerism, consumption, and capitalism in the era of human-influenced climate change. A central goal of our work will be to foreground the rhetorical dimension of environmental discourse and feature writing itself as a component of environmental literacy.

Throughout the semester we will work together to explore and analyze different texts from a wide variety of genres, disciplines, and levels of complexity—ranging from Pulitzer Prize-winning bestselling novels to esoteric publications from academic journals—in an attempt to, among other things, identify growing rifts in our public discourse when it comes to environmental matters, especially, and most recently, climate change. We will engage with authors and texts that both excel at and struggle with bridging these rifts, while determining what rhetorical tools and approaches they each use in the process. We will use the knowledge we build together to take on several major projects that provide opportunities to research, write, revise, and synthesize information, contributing our voices to ongoing scholarly conversations. We will also have a chance to embrace our creative sides, first investigating the role that narrative (storytelling) plays in conveying challenging or controversial information before turning to craft our own descriptive, narrative prose.

2100: British Literature I

Prerequisites: ENGL 1007 or 1010 or 1011 or 2011.

2100-01 | TuTh 9:30-10:45 | Hasenfratz, Bob
2100-02 | MWF 11:15-12:05 | Gallucci, Mary

2101: British Literature II

Prerequisites: ENGL 1007 or 1010 or 1011 or 2011.

2101-01 | M 5:00-7:30 | Barreca, Regina

Exploring how British society reacts to cataclysmic change (including but limited to political upheaval, community scandal, and personal trauma) by closely reading the best of its literature from the late 19thth-century until the start of the 21st-century, this course will address, among others, these central questions:  

Are good people always secretly bad?  

How far does the psychological imprint of a family go before the larger imprint of society makes a mark?   

How is money different from class? 

How does desire differ from love?  

How do various writers grapple with similar issues and yet create such remarkably different works? 

How can their approaches vary so significantly, their shared language scatter itself so widely, and their narrative voices clash so violently while still remaining under the heading of “Modern British Literature”?

This demanding class, designed with ambitious students in mind, includes works by some of the most well-known and significant British writers of the previous two centuries. We'll be reading novels by George Eliot, James Joyce, Elizabeth Bowen, Alan Sillitoe, Muriel Spark, Patrick McGrath, and Zadie Smith. Class participation essential; two exams and (almost) daily in-class writings. 

2200: Literature and Culture of North America Before 1800

Also offered as: AMST 2200
Prerequisites: ENGL 1007 or 1010 or 1011 or 2011.

2200-01 | MWF 12:20-1:10 | Franklin, Wayne 

This course carries CA 1 Gen Ed credit. 

This course examines the early written and oral record of the area that eventually became the United States. It does so within the context of various non-textual analogues (e.g., architecture, art, landscape, material culture, and social, economic, and political institutions). The goal is to achieve a holistic understanding of the ways in which peoples of many varied backgrounds, from the Asian-derived indigenous inhabitants of North America to the various immigrant populations from continental Europe and the British Isles and the enslaved Africans they introduced to the Western hemisphere, came to express their views of the land and their experiences on it and with each other. Primary readings are drawn from recorded Indigenous mythic and historic texts, travel accounts originally written in various European languages (e.g., French, Spanish, Dutch, German, and English), works centered on indigenous-Euro-American contact and conflict, social history documents of literary value, key political documents, and poetry, early fiction and autobiography. Quizzes on major readings plus a midterm and a paper on the final two texts will be required. 


Cabeza de Vaca, Account. Arte Publico. 9781558850606 

Benjamin Franklin, Autobiography, Dover. 9780486290737 

Olaudah Equiano. Interesting Narrative. Penguin. 9780142437162 

Crèvecoeur, Letters from an American Farmer. Penguin 9780140390063 

Derounian Stodola, ed., Women's Captivity Narratives. Penguin 9780140436716 

Giles Gunn, ed. Early American Writing. Penguin 9780140390872 

  1. B. Brown, Wieland and Carwin. Penguin. 9780140390797

2201: American Literature to 1880

Prerequisites: ENGL 1007 or 1010 or 1011 or 2011.

2201-01 | MWF 2:30-3:20 | Phillips, Jerry

2203: American Literature Since 1880

Prerequisites: ENGL 1007 or 1010 or 1011 or 2011.

2203-01 | MWF 10:10-11:00 | Kim, Suhyun

This course will read American literature since 1880 to the present, focusing on the diverse perspectives and positions that shape our understandings of America. We will explore how writers whose voices have often fallen out from the mainstream narratives of the nation have understood, questioned, negotiated, and imagined different meanings of America throughout history. Class discussions will center around themes that relate to issues of race, gender, sexuality, and class.  
Readings will include works of fiction, non-fiction, and poems by both canonical and more emergent and non-canonical writers that may include Nella Larsen, James Baldwin, Toni Morrison, June Jordan, Jamaica Kincaid, Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz, Tiphanie Yanique, among others. There will be class discussions and quizzes. Assignments may include short response papers, weekly journals, discussion group activities, a public-facing project, and a final paper.

2203W: American Literature Since 1880

Prerequisites: ENGL 1007 or 1010 or 1011 or 2011.

2203W-01 | MWF 1:25-2:15 | Lacey, Darby

The goals of this course are two fold. First, we will explore a sample of the last 140 or so years of American literature. Second, we will allow our questions about the selection of literature that we read and their relationship to our worlds to serve as a jumping off point for our own writing.  

Because our time period is so large and there are so many possibilities of texts that this course might include, we will be reading somewhat adventurously within the time and national bounds of the course title. This means that we will read across genres including novels, plays, poetry, television, graphic novels, and personal writing by canonical writers – such as Mark Twain, William Faulkner, and Toni Morrison – and non-canonical and emergent writers – such as Ocean Vuong and Carmen Maria Machado. We will also read texts thematically rather than chronologically even as we continue to consider historical context for each text. Students will have a choice in our final text of the semester.  

As this is a W course, we will also think about the processes of writing frequently and you will write often in class. In W courses at UConn you are required to write 4500 words or 15 pages of revised writing. This writing will be spread across a research paper, a rationale paper for our student chosen text, and an opinion/letter to the editor paper. Taken together, the readings and assignments for this course provide a foundation for English majors interested in 20th- and 21st-century American literature and the type of scholarly writing done in English courses. Additionally, this course offers other majors an entry point into literary studies by opening up connections between fiction, history, cultural politics, and lived experience and an exploration of metacognitive writing practices that are applicable to all writing endeavors. 


2207: Empire and US Culture

Also offered as: AMST 2207HIST 2207
Prerequisites: ENGL 1007 or 1010 or 1011 or 2011.

2207-01 | MWF 10:10-11:00 | Phillips, Jerry

2214: African American Literature

Also offered as: AFRA 2214
Prerequisites: ENGL 1007 or 1010 or 1011 or 2011.

2214-01 | TuTh 11:00-12:15 | Cutter, Martha

This course will be an investigation of African American literature written from 1845-2022. We will consider the genre of the slave narrative, early novels and fiction by African American writers, poetry and fiction written during the Harlem Renaissance, and contemporary works by authors such as Toni Morrison, Ta-Nehisi Coates, Colson Whitehead, and Meg Giddins. We will conclude the class with an examination of Ava DuVernay’s film 13th 

Readings will likely include Frederick Douglass, Narrative of Life of Frederick Douglass; short stories by Charles Chesnutt, Richard Wright, Ralph Ellison, and Zora Neale Hurston; essays by James Baldwin; Nella Larsen’s Passing; Toni Morrison’s Song of Solomon; Meg Giddins’ The Women Could Fly, Ta-Nehisi Coates’ Between the World and Me, Patrisse Khan-Cullors’ When They Call You a Terrorist: A Black Lives Matter Memoir, Colson Whithead’s The Underground Railroad, and poetry by Langston Hughes, Gwendolyn Brooks, and others.  

Requirements will include: a midterm; a final exam; weekly or bi-weekly Husky CT postings; a paper; and class participation. This class will be centered on discussion of texts by students, and as such it necessitates that students participate on a regular basis.  

2274W: Disability in American Literature and Culture

Also offered as: AMST 2274W
Prerequisites: ENGL 1007 or 1010 or 1011 or 2011.

2274W-01 | TuTh 11:00-12:15 | Henderson, Tolonda

This course, which fulfills CA1, CA4, and COMPW, has been designed around three guiding principles. First, disabled people have voice and agency. Both speaking and non-speaking disabled people have a great deal to say and have the desire and ability to shape their own lives. We will start the semester with disability narratives (e.g. Disability Visability edited by Alice Wong; El Deafo by CeCe Bell) that reinforce this concept and spend time on Disability Twitter to explore the activism there. This will include following activists and issues on Twitter as well as creating Twitter threads based on what you have learned. Second, disability is a socially constructed concept. In other words, the meaning of disability is neither stable nor self-evident. We will explore readings from Disability Studies that explore and excavate these observations. Third and finally, expertise is meant to be shared. While many students understand their professor to be the only audience for their work, this class will provide opportunities to invite other students and the general public to benefit from what you have learned. Our 15 pages of revised writing will include a personal reflection on disability narrative as a genre, an annotated bibliography on a disability related topic of your choice, and a researched essay based in our work on Twitter. 

2276W: American Utopias and Dystopias

Also offered as: AMST 2276W
Prerequisites: ENGL 1007 or 1010 or 1011 or 2011.

2276W-01 | Tu 5:00-6:15 | Hybrid | Grossman, Leigh

2301: Anglophone Literatures

Prerequisites: ENGL 1007 or 1010 or 1011 or 2011.

2301-01 | TuTh 12:30-1:45 | Coundouriotis, Eleni

Anglophone literatures are English language works from Africa, the Caribbean, and South Asia. These works were shaped by the history of British colonialism and its long aftermath in an ongoing decolonization. To tackle this complex history and the extensive movement of peoples that resulted, the course focuses on the theme of crossing boundaries, whether these are physical boundaries, boundaries of identity, religion, or national affiliation. Although sometimes liberating, the crossing of boundaries often arises from or leads to crisis and added precarity. We will explore the experiences represented in these works but also the literary questions that crossing boundaries provokes. Most of our reading will draw from contemporary works and include fiction as well as drama and poetry. Assignments include 3 papers (3-4 pages each), a video presentation posted on Husky CT, and a final exam.  

2301W: Anglophone Literatures

Prerequisites: ENGL 1007 or 1010 or 1011 or 2011.

2301W-01 | TuTh 2:00-3:15 | Hogan, Patrick

See the description for 2301W-02

2301W-02 | TuTh 3:30-4:45 | Hogan, Patrick

The obvious feature that connects Anglophone literatures is the colonial history (partially) shared by their countries of origin. Why would we otherwise link such different nations as Nigeria, India, Canada, and Australia? This course will, therefore, stress colonialism and the ways in which these diverse literatures emerged from colonial conditions. Of course, the diversity of these literatures is as consequential as the similarity. In connection with this, it is important to distinguish various kinds of colonialism. Colonialism in Nigeria is not the same as colonialism in Canada, for example. As this is a literature course, we also need to be aware of the various literary approaches to “emplotting” colonialism, which is to say, creating stories that address the colonial condition. We will begin the semester by considering just what constitutes colonialism (e.g., how we might define “colonialism”). From there we will turn to the chief varieties of colonialism and some of the recurring structures—particularly story genres—taken up by authors in examining colonialism.  

Shahzia Sikander, “Ready to Leave” 


After a couple of weeks on these theoretical topics, we will turn to literary works. In the course of the semester, we will consider narratives from different types of colony. For example, we may examine a work from Canada (such as Margaret Atwood’s Surfacing) and/or one from Australia (such as Nugi Garimara’s Follow the Rabbit-Proof Fence); we will certainly examine some works from India (perhaps including some poetry and visual art about Kashmir), and works from two or three African nations, such as Kenya (e.g., Ngugi wa Thiong’o’s A Grain of Wheat), South Africa (e.g., J. M. Coezee’s Waiting for the Barbarians), and Nigeria (e.g., Adichie’s Half of a Yellow Sun or Bandele’s film of the novel), as well as a selection of stories from across the continent--Ama Ata Aidoo’s African Love Stories. As the title of Aidoo’s collection suggests, we will pay particular attention to the ways in which authors take up the love story genre to address colonialism, though we will take up other recurring genres as well.  


Coursework will include short responses to readings, one or two group presentations, general class participation, and two 8-page essays, preceded by outlines and drafts. The essays will explicate part of one of the literary works (or perhaps rewrite part creatively) in line with themes explored in the course; each essay will involve cultural or historical research integrated with the explication (or creative rewriting).  

Nilima Sheikh, “Each Night Put Kashmir in Your Dreams”


2305: Modern Japanese Literature

Also offered as: AAAS 2305JAPN 2305
Prerequisites: ENGL 1007 or 1010 or 1011 or 2011.

2305-01 | TuTh 9:30-10:45 | Igarashi, Yohei

This course surveys modern and contemporary Japanese literature, from 1868 to the present. All readings are in English translation. Focusing on novels, but including also folk tales, poetry, short stories, and film, the course considers how our works registered various literary traditions as well as momentous twentieth-century historical developments, gender roles and their discontents, and how literary works interacted with other art forms and media. Works include those by Abe Kōbō, Kawakami Hiromi, Mishima Yukio, Murakami Haruki, Natsume Sōseki, and Yoshimoto Banana.

2401: Poetry

Prerequisites: ENGL 1007 or 1010 or 1011 or 2011.

2401-01 | TuTh 8:00-9:15 |Cohen, Bruce

See the description for 2401-02

2401-02 | TuTh 9:30-10:45 | Cohen, Bruce

This introductory course will focus on the close reading and analysis of verse to expand your appreciation of the traditions of poetry. We will explore poetic techniques, forms and strategies and learn to critically analyze poetry. In essence, we will delve into what makes a poem a “poem.” We will discuss some of the various “schools” of poetry to provide you with some historical context for the sensibilities and conventions of poetry. The goal of the course is to expand your interest in poetry to the point that you will read it outside of class, well after the course has concluded and be able to discuss poetry in an intelligent manner. Course requirements include class participation, written essays and a final exam. 

2401-03 | Online | Choffel, Julie

This course will offer a survey of poetry in English across traditions. We will study conventions of poetic forms, genres, and devices, and how poets have taken up, altered, or abandoned them. We will find out, from the poems themselves, how to read them and what they are for. Coursework will consist of close readings, online discussion and group work, collaborative research and exercises, and a final paper. 


2405: Drama

Prerequisites: ENGL 1007 or 1010 or 1011 or 2011.

2405-01 | TuTh 9:30-10:45 | Marsden, Jean

This course emphasizes the role of drama as theater – works written to be performed.  After beginning with an exploration of three iconic classical dramas, two Greek tragedies and one Roman comedy, the first half of the course focuses on the evolution of genre in a range of tragedies and comedies written between 1595 and 1900.  The second half of the course is dedicated to a diverse selection of twentieth-century dramas, with a particular emphasis on innovative or experimental stagings.  Assignments will include two papers, a scene staging, a group presentation, and a final exam. Plays read will include Sophocles, Oedipus Rex, Euripedes, Medea, Shakespeare, Much Ado About Nothing, Wilde, The Importance of Being Earnest, Williams, Streetcar Named Desire, Hansberry, Raisin in the Sun.

2407: The Short Story

Prerequisites: ENGL 1007 or 1010 or 1011 or 2011.

2407-01 | MWF 12:20-1:10 | Staff
2407-02 | MWF 11:15-12:05 | Cordon, Joanne

Narrative Survival Kit 

In The White Album, Joan Didion argues that narrative helps us make sense of the world we live in: “We tell ourselves stories in order to live.” Following her insight, we will read a spectrum of classic to contemporary short stories, sampling the fictional worlds created by a diverse group of writers. We will also consider how various artists deploy the elements of the genre: Plot, character, setting, point of view, and style. All of the stories come from The Story and Its Writer. Assignments will include midterm, a class debate of the “best” short story, and one essay. 

2407-03 | Online | Codr, Dwight

This course is designed to introduce students to the short story as a literary form. We will focus our attention on how stories work, what techniques and devices authors use to achieve certain types of effects on readers, the various components of narrative fiction, the difference between authors and narrators, and the importance of irony in the study of any kind of narrative text. The course, which includes short stories from a range of periods and authors, invites students to engage critically and creatively with these stories through formal writing assignments, discussion board posts, a recorded presentation, and a final examination testing reading comprehension. Students will also read theoretical texts and pieces of literary criticism, which they will apply to the assigned stories.

Authors covered in this course include the following: Nathaniel Hawthorne, James Baldwin, William Faulkner, Flannery O’Connor, Shirley Jackson, Charlotte Perkins Gilman, Edgar Allen Poe, Gabriel García Márquez, Alice Walker, E.T.A. Hoffmann, Jorge Luis Borges, Ambrose Bierce, Herman Melville, Franz Kafka, Stephen Crane, and George Saunders.

This is a fully asynchronous course that demands exceptional organizational skills and motivation of its students. While students will have opportunities to meet with the professor during office hours, there are no class meetings and virtually all feedback appears in the form of assessment rubrics and written commentary.

Catalogue Description: The short story as a literary form with study of significant Continental, British, and American writers. CA 1.

2411: Popular Literature

Prerequisites: ENGL 1007 or 1010 or 1011 or 2011.

2411-01 | Online | Cormier, Emily

Popular Literature has always included books that attract a young audience; Young Adult books have often found a much wider audience than “young adults.” In this class we will focus on this segment of Popular Literature, concentrating our discussion on the convergence of ideas found in award-winning dystopian fiction, graphic novels, and realistic novels. By reading different sub-genres, we aim to see whether these divergent forms address similar anxieties about coming-of-age in America or if the form is more directly related to content. Each student will also create an individual guiding question that will lead them to examine one specific topic throughout all the texts we read. This course begins with a close look at three adolescent dystopian novels: The Giver,  Feed, and The Marrow Thieves.  In these novels our protagonists are trapped in worlds where they are constantly surveilled by forces that exert control, eliminate choice, and seem insurmountable. We continue with a unit on word and image texts: Fun Home, American Born Chinese, This One Summer, where we learn how to “read” images in as much detail as words. Finally, we read Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe, and The Hate U Give, two novels in traditional form to complete our foray into this subset of (very) Popular Literature.

2411-02 | Online | Cormier, Emily

See description for 2411-01

2600: Introduction to Literary Studies

Prerequisites:  ENGL 1007 or 1010 or 1011 or 2011; open to English majors, others with instructor consent.

2600-01 | TuTh 9:30-10:45 | Dennigan, Darcie

Hello, English majors-- and also Hello, lovers of genius and of poetry. In this course, you will explore the multifaceted approaches to thinking, writing, and research-- critical and creative, all three!-- that studying English invites you to undertake. Expect forays into modernism and modern art, literary criticism, library archives, digital humanities, a cancel culture debate, and more. And all of this will be guided by self-proclaimed genius Gertrude Stein and her book Tender Buttons. Requirements include large amounts of analytical and creative writing (some graded and some simply for practice), Career Center activities, willingness to take risks and engage in conversations, and an open mind. Not required but useful with Stein: a sense of humor.  

2600-02 | MW 11:15-12:05 | Hybrid | Deans, Tom

This course is an invitation to the various ways of doing English Studies. You’ll learn some key terms and methods to help you thrive in upper-division English courses as we explore several modes engaging with literary, rhetorical, and cultural criticism. We’ll look to the past (What theories of interpretation have prevailed in earlier times?) and to the future (Where is English Studies now, and where is it trending?). Requirements include 2-3 critical essays/projects, active class discussion, attendance at 2 out-of-class readings/talks, a collaborative mid-semester oral exam, a literature review on a relevant topic of your choice, and 2 collaborative class presentations. 

2603: Literary Approaches to the Bible

Prerequisites: ENGL 1007 or 1010 or 1011 or 2011.

2603-01 | TuTh 9:30-10:45 | Dolan Gierer, Emily

The goal of this course is to understand the Bible as one of our earliest ancient texts, one which weaves together literature, history, and theology. We will explore the various literary genres of the Bible, examine the complex characterizations of both God and humans, wrestle with thematic ambiguities around gender, national identity, violence, suffering, and sacrifice, while also developing a better understanding of the narrative conventions of ancient Hebrew writers.  This course is open to everyone interested in studying the Bible as one of the most popular and enduring literary texts of all times, and helps fulfill the Early Literary, Cultural, and Linguistic History requirement for English majors. 

2607: Literature and Science

Prerequisites: ENGL 1007 or 1010 or 1011 or 2011.

2607-01 | MWF 3:35-4:25 | Lacey, Darby

This course considers the dialogue between scientific and critical-humanistic ways of understanding the world, particularly through the literary arts. Our course will be shaped by the following guiding inquiries:

  • What is science? What is truth? Who gets to decide what is true?
  • How is science narrativized? How does scientific language shape literary production? How do literature and rhetoric shape scientific discourses?
  • How can literature and other creative works help us imagine alternative medical and environmental futures?

Likely texts include Robin Wall Kimmerer’s creative nonfiction work Braiding Sweetgrass, Michael Frayn’s play Copenhagen, Susan Sontag’s short story “The Way We Live Now” and work of cultural criticism Illness as Metaphor/AIDS as Metaphor, among others. Projects for the course include a response paper, a plan for a museum exhibit, and a creative project. Lectures in this course will be few and far between. Instead, students will take an active role in their learning as we will foreground their own inquiries and questions in activities and discussions.

As this course satisfies the CA1 requirement, I invite students from all majors to take this course and extend a special welcome to students majoring in science and engineering. I hope to build a classroom environment that creates dialogue about the roles of science and literature in our contemporary world.

2610: Introduction to Digital Humanities

Also offered as: DMD 2610
Prerequisites: None.

2610-01 | MWF 12:20-1:10 | Booten, Kyle

This project-based course will explore how computers can help us to understand humanistic topics (such as literary texts, historical events, and philosophical questions) in new and powerful ways. 

Key topics that we will consider:

* How to design interactive web-based archives and digital games for the humanities

* How to use computational tools to analyze vast quantities of literature or historical data that would be impractical for a human to read

Hands-on activities will introduce tools and techniques of the Digital Humanities; no prior experience with them is assumed.

2614: Writing with Algorithms

Prerequisites: ENGL 1007 or 1010 or 1011 or 2011

2610-01 | MWF 1:25-2:15 | Booten, Kyle

How do you program a computer to write a poem? This course is an introduction to programming with the popular and versatile computer language Python; it is also a kind of creative writing workshop. The first part of the course will take the form of a series of technical labs introducing Python and exploring ways that it can be used to generate poems and other literary texts. In the second part of the course, participants will share and discuss their own works of computer-generated literature. 

This course is designed for those who have no prior programming experience. For many, programming "poetry bots" can be an engaging way to learn to code. However, this course is also an opportunity to think critically and scientifically about the relationship between computation and language.  

2635E: Literature and the Environment

Prerequisites: ENGL 1007 or 1010 or 1011 or 2011.

2635E-01 | MW 1:25-2:15 with  multiple options for a Friday discussion | Menrisky, Alexander

This course offers an introduction to human relationships with environment through the lens of literature. In other words, it is a survey of the different ways writers and other figures have represented environment—and human relations with it—over time and across genres, rather than of the science of environment. We will read fiction, nonfiction, poetry, film, and other media (mostly from the United States) to consider how concepts like “nature” and “environment” have meant different things at different times. We will do so specifically by studying how ideas about “nature,” race, and gender have influenced each other in an American context, from the mid-nineteenth century to the present. Accordingly, we will have two major objectives throughout the semester: (1) to understand the diversity of ways writers conceive of environment, and (2) to think through the relationship between literary form/genre and environment—why a writer might favor a certain form/genre to communicate about environment and environmental problems and how those forms/genres shape readers’ perceptions. Even though we can’t possibly touch on all of them, we’ll survey a wide range of genres, including nature writing, ecopoetry, and “cli-fi.” Texts will include works by such authors as Henry David Thoreau, Rachel Carson, Simon Ortiz, Tommy Pico, and Robin Wall Kimmerer, as well as films such as Princes Mononoke. Weekly meetings include two lectures and one (smaller) Friday discussion section. 

2640: Studies in Film

Prerequisites: ENGL 1007 or 1010 or 1011 or 2011.

2640-01 | TuTh 2:00-3:15 | Semenza, Gregory

The Horror Film

This course focuses on the history, politics, and theory of the international horror film, from the silent era through present day; it also surveys the important sub-genres of horror, including the monster films, paranormal films, slasher films, gialli, and folk horror films, just to mention a few.  Often criticized—sometimes even dismissed—as the lowliest of all forms—horror has in fact always been one of the most formally innovative and ideologically complex film genres.  The passionate responses it tends to inspire in audiences, from cult-like devotion to outright disgust, raise fascinating questions about why we love (or hate) to be frightened.  How do the things that most terrify us change over time or within different locales?  How do we draw ethical lines (personal, institutional, or national) about what we are willing to depict or watch on film?  What do our individual and collective responses to horror say about us and the world in which we live?

2701: Creative Writing I

Prerequisites: ENGL 1007 or 1010 or 1011 or 2011. May not be taken out of sequence after passing ENGL 3701, 3703, or 3713.

2701-02 | TuTh 11:00-12:15 | Dennigan, Darcie

This is a course for students who want to practice becoming more comfortable with failure, boredom, and confusion. You'll write each week, inside and outside of class, and you'll read a lot too. Your final project will be self-directed and may take the form of a play, performance, poem, essay, or something else. Through writing experiments from or inspired by Gabrielle Civil, Bohumil Hrabal, Sibyl Kempson, Bhanu Kapil, Francis Ponge, Heriberto Yepez, Robert Walser, and more, you will get closer to -- maybe even next to!-- your writing self, and the ineluctable expression that only you can execute. Some questions we will explore as a class: *How much space can you or should you take up on the page? *How boring can you be, and what might be wonderful about boring writing? *How can you give yourself permission to write the things you're most scared to write? This is a studio course, which means our class meetings will be part playground, part laboratory, part dark forest. What's most important is being there, in class, every week-- to experiment, explore, and question together.  

2701-03 | TuTh 12:30-1:45 | Buckner, Sophia
2701-04 Honors Section| TuTh 2:00-3:15 | Forbes, Sean 
See description for 2701-05
2701-05 | TuTh 3:30-4:45 | Forbes, Sean

Finding Your Artistic Voice Through Creative Writing Prompts

In this introduction to creative writing class, we will examine the different approaches that a writer can take when trying to establish a speaker in a poem or short story. The first half of the course will be dedicated to writing narrative poetry and for the second half we will focus on short and long form fiction stories. We will look at exemplary works of poetry and fiction from writers like David Dominguez, Allison Joseph, Richard Blanco, and fiction stories from One Story and One Teen Story, print literary journals that publish only one story per month. Students will produce a final portfolio of their original work. Class participation is an essential component to this largely workshop-based course along with weekly writing prompts such as writing in iambic pentameter and challenging in class writing prose sketches

3000-Level Courses

3010W: Advanced Composition for Prospective Teachers

Prerequisites: ENGL 1007 or 1010 or 1011 or 2011.

3010W-01 | TuTh 3:30-4:45 | Courtmanche, Jason

Advanced Composition for Prospective Teachers is a course designed primarily for Secondary English Education majors, dual degree students in English and Education, and English majors considering teaching as a career. We will study current theories of composition with a comprehensive approach to literacy that includes reading.  

Students will be required to translate theory into practice. You will inspect and write about your own literacy, respond to current research (and to one another’s ideas about current research), and work with local high school students to truly get a sense of whether or not your ideas (and those of the theorists) hold water.  

Expect a lot of class participation, a lot of reading, and a lot of writing and revision. You each will each compose four essays of 1200-1500 words and weekly response papers (1 page/300 words) to the assigned readings, as well as a final reflection. We will read four major texts, excerpts from three others, as well as several articles, and two novels along with sophomores from EO Smith.  

You will receive one final, holistic course grade based on your growth as a writer, the quality of your essays, and your effort, participation, and attendance in all course activities.  

Course texts are likely Penny Kittle and Kelly Gallagher's 180 Days: Two Teachers and the Quest to Engage and Empower Adolescents, Maja Wilson's Reimagining Writing Assessment, Felica Rose Chavez's The Anti-Racist Writing Workshop, and Carlin Borsheim-Black and Sophia Sarigiandes' Letting Go of Literary Whiteness.  

3012: Books and Book Publishing

Prerequisites: ENGL 1007 or 1010 or 1011 or 2011 or 3800; open to juniors or higher. Cannot be taken for credit after passing ENGL 3011.

3012-01 | TuTh 3:30-4:45 | Grossman, Leigh

Where do books come from? This advanced publishing course delves into how book publishing works, and all the steps a manuscript goes through in becoming a book or e-book—and why some books sell to mainstream publishers while others don't. The course also touches on the skills necessary to break into and to be successful in the publishing field, whether as a line editor, production editor, writer, agent, publicist, or other creative position. A number of publishing professionals will be on hand as guest lecturers on specific topics, and to answer questions.  

3015W: Writing Across Cultures

Prerequisites: ENGL 1007 or 1010 or 1011 or 2011

3015W-01 | TuTh 11:00-12:15 | Decapua, Sarah

Approximately seven thousand spoken languages and innumerable dialects and sign languages are in use around the world, making languages important archives of knowledge. This course is designed to help students better understand and develop robust knowledge of the rhetoric surrounding language, or linguistic diversity; to analyze the rhetoric behind arguments related to linguistic diversity; to understand the relationship between rhetoric and linguistic diversity in both historical and contemporary contexts; and to construct and defend compelling arguments related to linguistic diversity. In addition to the theoretical work of the course, students will practice writing about rhetorical moves related to conversations about linguistic diversity and gain experience negotiating the personal, social, political, and rhetorical factors that impact their writing about various cultures. Students do not need to have a diverse language background to participate in this course.    

As a writing-intensive course, Writing Across Cultures will include several composition assignments, which students will revise throughout the course. Students also will join the conversation surrounding linguistic diversity through large- and small-group discussions, both in-person and in online discussion forums, and will gain experience reading and commenting on each other’s work during peer-response sessions, which will help to improve their own writing. Course assessments will include Weekly Reading (e.g., essays; chapters in textbook; open access resources, as appropriate); three major papers (formal essays, 5 pages each; drafts and revisions); a fourth major assignment will be a multimodal project; in-class writing. Students will use writing and multimodal composition to articulate their knowledge of and experience with the rhetoric of linguistic diversity, while also developing their own rhetorical composing skills. As students engage with the rhetoric surrounding linguistic diversity, they will become more skilled rhetoricians themselves. Students will use reading and composing in the course to acquire, use, and disseminate their knowledge about rhetoric and linguistic diversity. 


3091: Writing Internship

Prerequisites: ENGL 1007 or 1010 or 1011 or 2011; open to juniors or higher.

3091-01 | Arr. | Fairbanks, Ruth 

3111W: Medieval Literature

Prerequisites: ENGL 1007 or 1010 or 1011 or 2011.

3111W-01 | TuTh 2:00-3:15 | Hasenfratz, Robert


3210: Native American Literature

Prerequisites: ENGL 1007 or 1010 or 1011 or 2011

3212-01 | MWF 12:20 - 1:10| Jangula-Mootz, Kaylee

The field of Native American literature has absolutely exploded in the years post-2010 with an incredible variety in literary form, genre, and regional representation. No longer is “reservation realism” the only type of book publishers and readers want from Native authors. With this richness and variety in mind, our Native American Literature course (ENGL 3210) this semester will be crafted around the theme of Native-authored genre fiction. Texts we read this semester will represent the following genre categories: crime/detective, horror, dystopian/futurism, sci-fi and fantasy, romance, and comedy. Some of the selected texts include: The Round House by Louise Erdrich; The Firekeeper’s Daughter by Angeline Boulley; The Marrow Thieves by Cherie Dimaline; and Hearts Unbroken by Cynthia Leitich Smith, among other short fiction selections.



3212: Asian American Literature

Also offered as: AAAS 3212
Prerequisites: ENGL 1007 or 1010 or 1011 or 2011; open to juniors or higher.

3212-01 | TuTh 9:30-10:45 Distance Learning | Kim, Na-Rae

By exploring various artistic productions by Asian Americans, this course seeks to grasp central issues and themes for understanding contemporary Asian America, and furthermore, multicultural America. Asian American literary productions exhibit vibrant re-imagination of American history, nation-state, nationalism, citizenship, identity, and difference.   

This course is not a survey of these works, as Asian Americans are a diverse group of people whose literature reflect multiple backgrounds, experiences, and perspectives. Instead, our readings and assignments focus on key themes including: racism, stereotypes, gender expectations, migration, representation, and redefining America. Through this course, we consider how even the seemingly most personal relationships expressed in cultural production are rooted in and shaped by historical and social circumstances.  


3215W: Twentieth- and Twenty-First Century African American Literature

Also offered as: AFRA 3215W
Prerequisites: ENGL 1007 or 1010 or 1011 or 2011; open to juniors or higher.

3215W-01 | TuTh 2:00-3:15 | Williams, Erika

3218W: Ethnic Literature of the United States

Prerequisites: ENGL 1007 or 1010 or 1011 or 2011; open to juniors or higher.

3218W-01 | MWF 12:20-1:10 | Kim, Suhyun

This course will read works of contemporary fiction and nonfiction by writers of color, immigrant writers, and non-American writers who write about the US or (mainly) for the US audience. By doing so we will interrogate the mainstream stories told about the US as a nation and examine the varied positions and perspectives that may newly shape or expand our narratives about the nation. 
This will be a discussion-based class. As a W course, some of the assignments for this class may include short response papers, weekly journals, a mid-term paper, a proposal presentation, and a final paper. Writers may include Jamaica Kincaid, James Baldwin, NoViolet Bulawayo, Nicole Dennis-Benn, and Steph Cha, among others.

3220: Jewish American Literature and Culture

Also offered as: HEJS 3401 
Prerequisites: ENGL 1007 or 1010 or 1011 or 2011.

3220-01 | TuTh 9:30-10:45 | Weiss, Amy 


3420: Children’s Literature

Prerequisites: ENGL 1007 or 1010 or 1011 or 2011.

3420-01 | MWF 12:20-1:10 | Cormier, Emily

In this survey of Children’s Literature, we will read works from the 1700s to the present, focusing on the shifting meaning of childhood itself. Students can expect to read primers, poetry, fairy tales, novels, a graphic narrative, and picture books. We will also read selected articles that invite us into the scholarly conversation around the works we are reading.  We will plan a special field trip to the Archives and Special Collections where we will encounter selections from the Maurice Sendak archive that show his process in creating books like Where the Wild Things Are, In the Night Kitchen, and others. There will be short writing assignments, exams, a research project, and a picture book presentation. Classes will be primarily discussion-based, with a mix of small-group activities and larger class discussion. Texts will include Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, Inside Out and Back Again, The Dream Keeper, Goodnight Moon, and more.

3420-02 | TuTh 9:30-10:45 | Smith, Victoria

In this course, we will explore a range of children’s literature in English, including fairy tales, picture books, realism, historical fiction, poetry, nonfiction, and graphic narrative. Our task will be to think critically about what these texts tell us about children’s literature as a genre; what literature for young readers reveals about how we understand childhood, including questions of representation and diversity; and how these books participate in larger movements in history, culture, and art. Our course material will include important texts in the history of the genre but will focus on more recent examples that help us explore the changing landscape of literature for young readers in relation to matters of diversity of representation, such as When You Trap a Tiger by Tae Keller, Melissa by Alex Gino, and Dreamers by Yuyi Morales. Please note that this is not a course on teaching children’s literature to young people. We may touch on the role of children’s literature in education, but we will not be discussing teaching practices. In addition to engaged and thoughtful class participation, students will complete a series of three research and writing assignments across the semester. 

3422: Young Adult Literature

Prerequisites: ENGL 1007 or 1010 or 1011 or 2011 or 3800; open to juniors or higher.

3422-01 | TuTh 8:00-9:15 | Henderson, Tolonda

This course has been developed around three guiding principles. First, identity formation is a common and critical theme in Young Adult literature. The books we will be reading (e.g. Firekeeper’s Daughter by Boulley; Eliza and her Monsters by Zappia) highlight this theme with protagonists who sit at a variety of intersections of social locations. Second, Young Adult literature can and should be read critically. We will discuss what it means to read critically, how to do so, and why it is important. Third and finally, expertise is meant to be shared. While many students understand their professor to be the only audience for their work, this class will provide opportunities to invite other students and the general public to benefit from what you have learned. Work will include regular critical reflections on the novels we will read, an annotated bibliography on a critical issue in and around one of our novels, and in class presentations. 

3422-02 | Distance Learning | MWF 9:05-9:55 | Cormier, Emily

In Young Adult Literature we study both the origins of this genre and the most recent contributions, as well as multiple scholarly articles that offer windows into overarching genre questions (What is YA Lit?) and current scholarly trends (How do contemporary scholars write about YA Lit?). Students also conduct their own research into the scholarship of the book of their choice, create their own arguments, and test out their own voices and perspectives. Together, we read a book from each decade, starting in the 1950s, trying to piece together how audiences, power dynamics, publishing trends, and popular ideologies of adolescence shift over time. We pay special attention to how race, sex, gender, class, and sexuality influence the hierarchies, anxieties, problems, and even the joys of YA texts. Early books include The Catcher in the Rye and The Bell Jar; later books include The Poet X and Laura Dean Keeps Breaking Up with Me. In between we will read a selection of books from the 70s, 80s, 90s, and early aughts that range from a “forbidden” sex-talk book by Judy Blume to formal poetry by Marilyn Nelson.  Along the way, we will ask ourselves serious questions about how and why such divergent books can all be considered Young Adult Literature. Forms of assessment include midterm exam, final exam, annotated bibliography, analytical responses, presentations, and class participation.    


3503: Shakespeare I

Prerequisites: ENGL 1007 or 1010 or 1011 or 2011. May not be taken out of sequence after passing ENGL 3505.

3503-01 | TuTh 11:00-12:15 | Semenza, Gregory

After more than 25 years of teaching and studying Shakespeare, I still marvel at how good he really is. My major goal in this introductory class is to share some of the things I've learned about his plays over the years, and to explore with you the reasons why his artistry continues to influence and move us 400 years after his death. My more technical goal is to instill appreciation and understanding of the following: the historical context in which Shakespeare lived and created his art; the major dramatic genres; the chief characteristics of Shakespeare's dramatic style: systematic indeterminacy, pervasive metatheatricality, and dialectical structuring; the basic terms and devices of Shakespearean drama, including soliloquy, aside, play-within-the-play, and exposition; the major characters such as Hamlet, Lear, and Juliet; and the major dramatic themes, including nature versus nurture, fate and freewill, and sacred and profane love.

Just a few years beyond the quatercentenary year—the 400th anniversary of Shakespeare’s death—this seminar will also focus on Shakespeare’s cultural legacy. Looking critically and theoretically at engagements of Shakespeare in scholarship, corporate business practices, educational curricula, music, television, and film, we will ask the question “Why Shakespeare?” That is, how and why has the “cultural capital” of Shakespeare been evoked since at least the publication of the First Folio in 1623? More specifically, how has Shakespeare been presented to the masses in terms of sexuality, gender, race, violence, and nationalism? What happens when Shakespeare’s name is evoked in “lowbrow” entertainment or appropriated in popular culture forms? What can the serious study of reception, adaptation, appropriation, and other such engagements teach us about Shakespeare and his considerable influence?

In addition to the required 6 plays, you will also read some sonnets and critical articles; listen to a 30-minute podcast episode; and watch 4 or 5 films and a TV series.  Assignments will include participation, quizzes, short papers, and a final examination.

3509W: Studies in Individual Writers

Prerequisites: ENGL 1007 or 1010 or 1011 or 2011; open to juniors or higher.

3509W-01 | TuTh 3:30-4:45 | Shringarpure, Bhakti

Leila Aboulela and Chimamanda Adichie

3611: Women’s Literature 1900 to the Present

Also offered as: WGSS 3613
Prerequisites: None.

3611-01 | TuTh 11:00-12:15 | Breen, Margaret

We will be focusing on a selection of significant texts that, written by women during the last ninety years, reflect a variety of cultural contexts. In addition to the novels and essays listed below, we will also be reading and discussing a range of short pieces (short stories, poems, and essays), which will be accessible via Husky CT. Our course texts are important because of both the stories they tell (stories regarding alienation, coming-of-age, resilience, resistance, violence, memory, and forgetting) and the ways in which those stories are told (ways regarding narrative technique, point of view, plot construction, metaphor, and so on).  

Likely Texts: 

Virginia Woolf: A Room of One’s Own (1929) 

Alice Walker: “In Search of Our Mothers’ Gardens” (1972) 

Nella Larsen: Passing (1929)  

Nawal El Saadawai: Memoirs from the Women’s Prison (1983)  

Adrienne Rich: “Notes toward a Politics of Location” (1984) and “‘When We Dead Awaken’:  

Writing as Revision” (1972), Husky CT 

Audre Lorde: “The Master’s Tools Will Never Dismantle the Master’s House” (1984) 

Dorothy Allison: Bastard Out of Carolina (1992)  

Judith Butler: “Imitation and Gender Insubordination” (1991) 

Sarah Waters: Tipping the Velvet (1998)  

Min Jin Lee: Pachinko (2017)  

Judith Halberstam: “Introduction,” The Queer Art of Failure (2011) 

Casey Plett: Little Fish (2018) 


Lively discussion; 2 timed essay exams; one 7-8-page paper 

3623: Studies in Literature and Culture

Also offered as: AAAS 3998
Prerequisites: ENGL 1007 or 1010 or 1011 or 2011.

3623-01 | TuTh 11:00-12:15 | Distance Learning | Kim, Na-Rae

Asia In and Through Asian American Literature

While Asian American literature has long been engaging Asia from its incipient moment, there has been a recent upsurge of Asian American texts that are set heavily, if not entirely, in Asia. This course explores 21st Century Asian American cultural productions that track Asia in various ways, including: American protagonists visiting Asia, historical fictions set entirely in Asia, exploring Asian food, culture, Asian lives and livelihoods before coming to the United States, and more. Our primary focus will be literature (novels, short stories, poems, plays, memoirs) but we will also look at films, documentaries, food shows, social media, and other forms of cultural productions. Through this examination, we will consider: Asian American aestheticizing of Asia; contemporary forms of globalization that allow for particular imaginations, attitudes, or modes of engaging Asia; politics, poetics, and ethics in engaging Asia as an Asian American; and the intertwined modernity and mutual construction of Asia, America, and Asian America. 

3629: Holocaust Memoir

Also offered as: HEJS 3629
Prerequisites: ENGL 1007 or 1010 or 1011 or 2011; open to sophomores or higher. Not open to students who have passed ENGL 3623 or 3619 taught as Holocaust literature.

3629-01 | TuTh 2:00-3:15 | Breen, Margaret

It has been more than 75 years since the end of World War II, during which over 6 million Jews—60% of European Jewry—were murdered. Other groups were also targeted; they include Communists, Jehovah Witnesses, Sinti-Roma, Afro-Germans, homosexuals, Poles, and people with disabilities. That historical event remains an ongoing phenomenon through its resultant cultural production.  The Holocaust lives today even as the events and people connected to it become part of the past.  

Likely Texts: 

Doris Bergen, War and Genocide  

Elie Wiesel, Night  

Primo Levi, Survival in Auschwitz  

Nechama Tec, Dry Tears  

Charlotte Delbo, Auschwitz and After 

Nechama Tec, Defiance  

Jonathan Safran Foer, Everything is Illuminated  

Patrick Desbois, Holocaust by Bullets  

Mimi Schwartz, Good Neighbors, Bad Times: Echoes of My Father’s German Village    

Lively discussion; one midterm; one shorter and one longer (research) paper 

3698: Variable Topics – Introduction to Native American and Indigenous Studies: Histories, Cultures, and Communities

Combined with WGSS 3998
Prerequisites: ENGL 1007 or 1010 or 1011 or 2011; open to juniors or higher.

3698-01 | W 4:40-7:10 | Newell, Christopher

Introduction to Native American and Indigenous Studies: Histories, Cultures, and Communities

This cross-disciplinary and integrative course seeks to introduce students to the complexities of the histories, cultures, and communities of Native American and Indigenous Peoples in North America. Course topics focus on the social, cultural, and political issues that are currently and historically central to the lives of Native peoples and nations. Readings are curated from multiple genres and disciplines: history, literature, autobiography, arts and music, film, and creative writing among others. The course also unabashedly centers the work of Native American and Indigenous scholars, artists, and community leaders.


3698: Variable Topics – Women and Gender in the Deaf World

Combined with ASLN 3254 & WGSS 3254
Prerequisites: ENGL 1007 or 1010 or 1011 or 2011; open to juniors or higher.

3698-02 | TuTh | Brueggemann

Women and Gender in the Deaf World

The roles of women inside and outside the Deaf world. How language and cultural barriers perpetuate the roles defined for and by d/Deaf women within Deaf and hearing societies.  Literature and film/documentary, alongside other humanities and social science readings, form the texts of the course.


3701: Creative Writing II

Prerequisites: ENGL 2701; instructor consent required.

3701-01 | TuTh 3:30-4:45 | Cohen, Bruce

Poetry and Prose-Poetry

The class will be a poetry and prose-poetry writing workshop. It is designed for students who have a serious and committed interest in writing and discussing poetry and have taken 2701. We will be reading and analyzing five books of poems and will be unraveling the craft and esthetic design of the various poets. We will also dissect the differences between poetry & prose poetry. Naturally, students will be required to produce original work and actively participate in the writing workshop. Students will be asked to research outside writers and share work with the class. It is assumed that all students have an active vocabulary and understanding of poetry. The class is by permission only and students will be asked to submit poems for consideration for entrance into the class.

3703: Writing Workshop

Prerequisites: ENGL 2701; instructor consent required.

3703-01 | W 5:00-7:30 | Barreca, Regina

Creative Nonfiction

“Success means  being heard  and don't stand there and tell me you are indifferent to being heard. Everything about you screams to be heard. You may write for the joy of it, but the act of writing is not complete in itself. It has its end in its audience. Writing is a good example of self-abandonment. I never completely forget myself except when I'm writing and I am never more completely myself than when I am writing.”  Flannery O’Conner, Habits of Being 

Designed for students with an interest in writing creative non-fiction with any eye towards publication, this course assumes a serious commitment both to reading and writing.  Students will produce seven pieces of  writing throughout the semester (between 750-1250+ words each); four of these are required essays. Each work will focus on that week’s assigned topic. Each student will email their finished piece to all the other members of the seminar, including the instructor, by FRIDAY AT NOON. Students are responsible for reading and commenting in detail on their colleagues’ work; I’ll provide a list of questions. Half your grade for the course will be earned by the thoughtful, judicious and specific commentary you offer your colleagues. Comments on each essay written for that week will then be submitted to the other members of the seminar, including the instructor, by the following SUNDAY AT MIDNIGHT. As a final project, each student will submit four carefully edited and revised essays to the instructor for grading, out of which three will be submitted for publication during the final class.  In addition to deadlines being non-negotiable, attendance at every class is assumed. Every member of the class will speak during every session.  Many of the students who have successfully completed this course have seen their work published. It’s not easy, but it’s worth it.

3713: Literary Magazine Editing

Prerequisites: ENGL 2701; open to sophomores or higher; instructor consent required. Recommended preparation: one 3000-level creative writing workshop.

3713-01 | TuTh 9:30-10:45 | Forbes, Sean

Each year around mid-September, a call is placed in the Creative Writing Digest for students to submit an application letter to work on the Long River Review, UConn’s award-winning art and literary magazine. The Long River Review seeks editors and staff for the following positions: Editor-in-Chief / Managing Editor / Fiction Editor / Nonfiction Editor / Poetry Editor / Translation Editor / Interviews Editor / Blog Editor / Editorial Reading Panels. Student editors all register for English 3713, a practicum in literary journal editing, offered every spring. Class members read widely in contemporary literary magazines, familiarizing themselves with older and newer print and online publications. Readings are combined with research presentations, writings, and hands-on editing work. The class culminates with the public release of its major project, that year’s issue of the Long River Review. English 3713 is offered by permission only. Students who wish to apply should look for the submission call in the Creative Writing Digest to submit their application letter addressed to the Professor teaching the course. Interviews take place during the advising period.

3715E: Nature Writing Workshop

Prerequisites: ENGL 1007 or 1010 or 1011 or 2011; open to sophomores or higher; instructor consent required. Recommended preparation: ENGL 2701.

3715E-01 | TuTh 2:00-3:15 | Dennigan, Darcie

This is a studio-based creative writing course, set on particularly exploring Donna Haraway's term sym-poiesis--making with--what can you write with lichen? with the bacteria clinging to the lip of your water bottle? with your family, and with each other? Expect to write abundantly in and outside of class about and from your position on 2023's Earth. Be prepared for nonlinear, challenging writing assignments.  There will be a range of readings, mostly from contemporary writers finding their own words and futures in the Anthropocene, and you'll have the chance to respond to those works in critical response posts and in class: Kate Schapira, Hiromi Ito, Maryam Parhizkar, Henry David Thoreau, Francis Ponge, Ross Gay, Charles A. Foster, Robin Wall Kimmerer, Antonin Artaud, and more. Expect to discuss your own writing in small and large group workshops, and to have your semester culminate in an extended writing project that imaginatively considers the concept of interdependence. 

4000-Level Courses

4101W: Advanced Study: British Literature

Prerequisites: ENGL 1007 or 1010 or 1011 or 2011; at least 12 credits of 2000-level or above English courses or consent of instructor; open to juniors or higher.

4101W-01 | TuTh 2:00-3:15 | Winter, Sarah

Radicals, Frauds, and Imposters: Satire and Sensationalism in Nineteenth-Century British Literature 

This course invites students to study a wide range of texts including novels, plays, satirical poems and illustrations, antislavery and other political tracts, and investigative journalism published between 1817-1862. Many of texts criticize, make fun of, or expose individual or collective hypocrisy, political crimes and scandals, swindles and scams, governmental incompetence, or widespread social and imperial injustices. They also entertain readers with stories of strange mass delusions or domestic deceptions perpetrated within families by imposters. Students will learn how to analyze satirical writing styles, journalistic investigative techniques, sensational fictional plots, and both radical and reactionary political critiques, as well as conduct research on topics of individual interest that may connect with similar kinds satire in public political culture today. Readings will include texts by novelists Charles Dickens and Mary Elizabeth Braddon, Chartist playwright Ernest Jones, Black British writers Robert Wedderburn, Mary Prince, and Mary Seacole, and journalist Charles Mackay.  

Course requirements: a 15-20 page research paper, including at least one draft and a revised final version; library research orientation and peer writing workshop; one short research database paper and presentation; annotated bibliography; midterm exam. 


4201W: Advanced Study: American Literature

Prerequisites:  ENGL 1007 or 1010 or 1011 or 2011; at least 12 credits of 2000-level or above English courses or consent of instructor; open to juniors or higher.

4201W-01 | MW 3:35-4:50 | Franklin, Wayne

Regionalist Expression in the US

We often say that stories “take place,” meaning that a narrative follows some sort of time sequence but even more that it is meaningfully set in some particular place. But does “setting” really matter? This course will explore the general idea by examining how American writers have engaged with their regional landscapes, cultures, and heritages from the Revolutionary era to the present. We will read significant examples of regionalist expression from the time of J. Hector St. John de Crèvecoeur’s Letters from an American Farmer (1782) and Catharine M. Sedgwick’s A New England Tale (1822) to William Kennedy’s “Albany” trilogy (1978-83) and Annie Proulx’s The Shipping News (1993) and Close Range: Wyoming Stories (1999), with other examples interspersed. As suggested above, we will approach the question of regionalism with due caution, considering various theories of whether place matters for literary works, and if so, how it does—and not just in American literature but in other traditions as well. Students will write reaction papers to the readings and a substantial critical paper exploring the issue of regional expression in the work of one or two authors. That final paper will go through several drafts across the semester.

4897: Honors VIII: Honors Thesis

Prerequisites: ENGL 1007 or 1010 or 1011 or 2011 or 3800 ; open to juniors or higher; open only to Honors students.

4897-01 | Arr. | Williams, Erika



4965W: Advanced Studies in Early Literature in English

Prerequisites: ENGL 1007 or 1010 or 1011 or 2011; at least 12 credits of 2000-level or above English courses or consent of instructor; open to juniors or higher.

4965W-01 | TuTh 12:30-1:45 | Marsden, Jean

Literature and Sexuality, 1660-1800

Assumptions regarding proper and improper sexuality are a fundamental aspect of human society and a crucial component of literature as diverse as public drama, private poetry, and interior subjectivities of the novel.  The years between the restoration of the English monarchy in 1660 and the dawn of the Romantic period were a period of flux, a time which saw these assumptions change and with them everything from class structures and property laws to gender expectations and the “new” category of the homosexual.  Please note: this is a class about sexuality, not about sex.  While some of the works we will examine are explicit, many others debate chastity and proper masculine and feminine behavior.  We will read conduct books, legal documents, literary and social theory, as well as a diverse range of drama, fiction, and poetry.  Readings will include:  The Man of Mode, The Lucky Chance, and The London Merchant, poetry by Rochester and Behn, Fanny Hill, and Pamela.

Class requirements will include short research projects, eight one-page papers, class presentations, and a critical problem paper. The second half of the semester will be focused on the development of a longer researched project and a portfolio of course work.