Graduate Courses

"The person, be it gentleman or lady, who has not pleasure in a good novel, must be intolerably stupid."

- Jane Austen, Northanger Abbey (1817)


Summer 2018 Graduate Course Offerings

Genre: The Cinematic Novel - EH 577 | Christopher Raczkowski
TR, 6:00 pm to 8:30 pm
Full summer term: May 29 through July 26

As a concept, the cinematic novel has numerous definitions and has been used for a dizzying array of analytical purposes. Critics have used it to identify everything from novels about Hollywood filmmaking to Hollywood film adaptations of novels. Others have used it as a way to theorize the powerful influence of film on the novel: how certain techniques like montage, cross-cutting, flash-back, slow-motion, fade out, close-ups, wide-angles, etc. have influenced the way writers produce narrative visions of the modern world. Given the large number of novelists employed as screenwriters in the early days of filmmaking, the term is equally appropriate for thinking about the way that the cinema was and continues to be powerfully influenced by the techniques of the novel. In this class, we will utilize all of these conceptions of "the cinematic novel" in order to focus on the 20th century shift from modernist to postmodernist culture. More specifically, my hope is that a focus on the cinematic novel can serve to highlight a shift in narrative techniques or modes of seeing (and representing) the world that underwrites the transition from modernist to postmodernist art and thought.

Special Topics: Jane Austen, Secret Radical? - EH 590 | John Halbrooks
MTWRF, 12:40 pm to 3:10 pm
Maymester: May 7 through May 25

This course takes its title from Helena Kelly's provocative book. (I have added the question mark.) We will consider Kelly's claims about Austen's politics, as well as her claim that Austenian film adaptations have entirely whitewashed the novels' radicalism. We will study two of Austen's novels (Pride and Prejudice and Emma), as well as film adaptations. Furthermore, each student will present on another Austen adaptation of their choosing in the last days of the course.

Fall 2018 Graduate Course Offerings

Graduate Writing for English - EH 502 | Cris Hollingsworth
R, 6:00 pm to 8:30 pm

The subject of this introduction to graduate research and academic writing is satire, a tradition of lampoon and ridicule that includes Lucian's A True Story, Cervantes's Don Quixote, Swift's Gulliver's Travels, Carroll's Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, short stories by Mark Twain and Dorothy Parker, and science fiction by writers like H. G. Wells, Aldous Huxley, and Philip K. Dick. Evaluated assignments will include a research essay, a library exercise and report, participation in workshop activities, and a presentation. This course is required of all MA students in their first year of work; its prerequisite is admission to the English Graduate Program.

Teaching College Writing - EH 505 | Patrick Shaw
MW, 2:30 pm to 3:45 pm

This course examines issues in composition history, theory, and pedagogy in the context of teaching first-year composition. Students will use this knowledge to develop course material appropriate to teaching first-year composition. Topics include syllabus and assignment design, lesson planning, course management, teaching in the linguistically and culturally diverse classroom, and assessment. Pre-requisite/Co-requisite: EH 502.

Studies in Chaucer - EH 513 | John Halbrooks
W, 6:00 pm to 8:30 pm

This course will survey Chaucer's poetry and will introduce students to recent developments in Chaucerian scholarship. Students will also gain valuable experience through involvement with the "Chaucer: Sound and Vision" conference, to be held on our campus in October.

Genre: African American Poetry - EH 577 | Laura Vrana
M, 6:00 pm to 8:30 pm

This course explores what Countee Cullen framed as "this curious thing: / To make a poet black, and bid him sing!" in America. Surveying poetry by African American writers from seventeenth-century origins among enslaved poets to twenty-first century texts, we will study the history of black poetry through its major periods, examining such questions as: What role does black poetry play in social and historical movements, from abolition to the Civil Rights Movement and #BlackLivesMatter? What does the contrast between "formal" and "experimental" works do to our views on black poetry? How has the trajectory of African American poetry over 300 years paralleled, differed from, and interacted with other developments in American literature and society?

Graduate Fiction Writing I/II - EH 583/584 | Nathan Poole
R, 6:00 pm to 8:30 pm

Advanced Fiction Writing is a seminar, writing workshop, and directed-study for intermediate and experienced writers of fiction. Through tailored writing projects students will work toward developing a greater understanding of the means and manners of fiction. Discussions and assignments will also involve literary journals and the submission process. Much of class time will be spent discussing peer work and literary models.

Special Topics: Milton - EH 590 | Richard Hillyer
TR, 2:00 pm to 3:15 pm

We will be studying John Milton's greatest poems and selections of his prose focusing on two topics: divorce and freedom of the press.

Special Topics in Creative Writing:
Crafting Your Eco-System - EH 591
| Charlotte Pence
T, 6:00 pm to 8:30 pm

What happens when the environment is more than a setting but a subject of one's work--be it in a sci-fi story or ruminative personal essay? In this special-topics, creative writing graduate class, we will explore how to create a nuanced environment in one's poetry, nonfiction, and fiction. Some questions we will address include what tools can writers use to convey the history of the land? How can writers communicate natural or man-made disasters to a variety of readers? And how have we invented nature, both in our lives and in our creative work? One bonus of this class is that students will have the opportunity to hear Andrea Wulf, author of The Invention of Nature, speak in Mobile. A final portfolio of original fiction, nonfiction, and poetry with a critical introduction, a book review ready for submission, and attendance at three readings will constitute the course's major requirements.

Thesis Hours - EH 599

Please see Dr. Harrington if you would like to register for thesis hours and have not already discussed your committee, graduation requirements, etc.