American literature 4 (Amerikai irodalom 4.) in spring 2015
Federmayer Éva, Fri 11:00–12:30, R433, host: DAS (R306)
3-credit seminar, 30 h/term; strong prereq: BBN-AME-214
description & set texts
This is a discussion seminar that focuses on texts that highlight the emergence and development of modernism and postmodernism in American literature. Since neither modernism nor postmodernism is monolithic but multifarious, informed even by contradictory ideologies, we will devote this semester to a sampling of canonical modernist and postmodernist texts in American literature to sharpen our critical acumen about multiplicity. We will work on short stories, chapters from a longer work, poems, two novels and a play/film adaptation to tease out the generic, gender, class, race/ethnic differences that shape modernist and postmodernist writing. All along, students are expected to keep track of their readings by doing the corresponding assignments in the Workbook that I will upload (the url will be announced in due time). Students are required to download and print out the Workbook which is to be submitted, with all assignments completed, at the last session of the semester. Please note that the requirements in the syllabus are broken down into weeks but we might even have spill-overs (as experience has taught me) and other unforseeable events in class that might upset a neat weekly schedule. In case of illness, the rule of thumb is that the students are requested automatically to move on to the next issue in line (and do the corresponding assignment in the Workbook. If not sure, the best way to find out about the assignment is to send me a short letter via email. Syllabus and Reading List 2/13 Intro 2/20-27 “The New Negro”: Washington, Du Bois (WB2 Units 1-2) a) Video on Booker T. Washington; fill out corresponding section in WB b) Du Bois, Chapters I and III from The Souls of Black Folk (Heath2); or 3/6 “The New Woman”: Gilman (WB2 Unit3) a) Charlotte Perkins Gilman, ‘The Yellow Wallpaper’ (1892) or c)Thornstein Veblen, Theory of the Leisure Class (1899) at 3/13-20 Modernist Poetry: T.S. Eliot, Wallace Stevens, William Carlos Williams (WB2 Units 4-5) Pound, Retrospect (copy), T.S. Eliot, “The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock,” “Tradition and the Individual Talent,” Wallace Stevens, “The Snow Man,” “Anecdote of the Jar” (Heath2), “Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Blackbird” (Norton2), William Carlos Williams: The Red Wheelbarrow,” “Portrait of a Lady,” “The Great Figure,” Spring and All,” “The Young Housewife,” “To Elsie,” “The Dead Baby,” “The Wind Increases,” “This is Just to Say,” “A Sort of Song,” “Landscape with the Fall of Icarus” (Norton2). Sampling from poems in electronic version: TS Eliot d) Prufrock: e) f) overview: Stevens g)Snowman: h)Anecdote of the Jar: i)13 Way of Looking at a Blackbird: WCW j)Portrait of a Lady + interpretations k)The Figure 5 (and criticism): l)Spring and All and interpretations m) n)The Young Housewife: o)To Elsie: interpretaions : p)The Red Wheelbarrow + interpretations: q)This Is Just to Say, interpretations: r)Landscape with the Fall of Icarus + interpretations. s)A Sort of Song: 3/27 Midterm 4/10-17 Modernist Fiction 1: Scott Fitzgerald (WB2 Units 6-7) Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby, also available in etext version at–-) 4/24 Contemporary African American Fiction: Toni Morrison/1 (WB2 Units 8-9) Toni Morrison, The Bluest Eye (Norton Anthology by Women or elsewhere; find or buy your own copy) 5/15 Final Exam (WRITTEN)
requirements & assessment
Requirements: active class participation, oral presentation, midterm and endterm (written) exams, completion of Workbook. Number 1 requirement is to come to class with the TEXT of the day on hand. (If you work with e-texts, make sure you print them out first.) Readings: as indicated in the syllabus + the corresponding sections in Netting America available on the Internet. When availabe, I also encourage students to use electronic texts the urls of which I indicated in the syllabus Grading: all grades averaged