Interim 2021-22

Writing 111 (FYW), Writing 120 (Writing and Rhetoric), or its equivalent is a prerequisite for all courses in the English department except some 100-level courses. While a few courses have additional prerequisites, most 100- and 200-level courses are open to all students — majors and non-majors alike — who have completed Writing 111, Writing 120, or its equivalent. 300-level courses ordinarily build upon prior work in the English Department. 300-level creative writing courses generally require prior completion of a relevant a 200-level creative writing course as a prerequisite. 300-level courses in literary studies (English courses other than those in creative writing), generally require as prerequisites English 185 and two 200-level English courses. Any course offered in the English department can count as an elective in the major.

Please note that these classes are subject to change.

English 243 Arthurian Legend and Literature – K Cherewatuk

OLd major Reqs: Literary history, pre 1800
New Major Reqs: british lit, pre 1800

This course examines a number of foundational texts of the medieval legend of King Arthur, focusing on key motifs such as the quest and love triangle, main characters, and genres. Students explore the specific social contexts that produced these works and select modern versions that reveal the perennial appeal of the Arthurian myth. Prerequisites: FYW or its equivalent. (ALS-L)

English 260 Topic: Shakespeare and Material Culture – K Marsalek

OLd major Reqs: cross disciplinary, pre 1800
New Major Reqs: british lit, pre 1800

Beds, books, meat pies, medicines, love tokens and laundry baskets–in this course we will study three or four plays by Shakespeare, focusing on the material goods that appear in them.  We will investigate how objects matter in the worlds of the plays: how they construct identity and gender, or create a sense of space, time or location.  We will also examine how the objects and the plays they appear in were produced and circulated in early modern England.  Assignments will include practical work with early recipes, artifacts and rare books, as well as analysis of the plays themselves.  Some classes will be held at sites in the Twin Cities such as rare books libraries and the Minneapolis Institute of Arts. Expenses for these parts of the course will not exceed $75.  Prerequisite: FYW or equivalent. (ALS-L)

English 276 Literature and the Environment – M Allister

OLd major Reqs: cross disciplinary, post 1800
New Major Reqs: elective

Through nonfiction, fiction, and poetry, students explore the complex relations between humans and the “natural” world. Students consider questions such as the following: What does it mean to be connected to a landscape? What is a sense of place? Students also reflect on how they and the writers they read put landscape into language. Also counts toward environmental studies major (all emphases) and concentration. Prerequisites: FYW or its equivalent. (ALS-L)

English 280 A – Topic: The Western – B Nordfjord

OLd major Reqs: genre, post 1800
New Major Reqs: elective

The western has long been considered the American genre par excellence. For much of the 20th century perhaps nothing signified America to audiences around the world as much as the dramatic landscapes and open spaces of the “wild wild west” and its stories of gunslingers, cowboys, sheriffs and Native Americans. Well before Hollywood emerged on the scene, the notion of manifest destiny had helped pave the way for a settlement and colonization of the continent with wide-ranging consequences—and forming the United States as we know it today. From the very beginning of the western expansion to the present day, literary texts and subsequently films have represented and responded to the West and its history in a variety of ways; from euphoric celebration to outright critique.

Course material consists of the novels The Mysterious Rider (Zane Gray), Shane (Jack Schaefer), The Searchers (Alan Le May), The Shootist (Glendon Swarthout) and Fools Crow (James Welch), a wide-ranging selection of Western films, and examples of influential scholarly works on the genre. 

English 280 B – Topic: Contemporary African Poetry – D Okoro

OLd major Reqs: genre, post 1800
New Major Reqs: anglophone lit

This course examines poetry written by African poets who have emerged since the 1980s. Students study the factors that have influenced the development of African poetry and learn to evaluate how literature enacts and reflects the efforts of individuals and groups to negotiate political, social, and cultural contexts. Course materials and discussions invite the exploration of African poets and their poetic personas as witnesses, activists, and spokespeople, and their struggle against tyranny, dictatorship, oppression, and injustice. Offered periodically. Prerequisite: FYW or WRR.

ENGL 287: Professional and Business Writing – R Eichberger

OLd major Reqs: genre
New Major Reqs: elective

This course gives students a hands-on opportunity to develop their use of writing strategies and technologies appropriate to workplaces. Course themes include workplace practices, professional ethics, technology resources, promotional resources, and writing on behalf of an organization. Students create individual and collaborative projects including employment documents, proposals, brochures, memos, and other professional genres. Through case studies, readings, and/or client-based projects, students analyze writing practices in a range of professional settings. Course fee for document production. Also counts toward management studies concentration. Prerequisites: FYW or its equivalent. (WRI)

ID 258: Theater in London – J Naito (Off-Campus)

OLd major Reqs: elective
New Major Reqs: elective

For centuries, London has served as the cultural capital of a nation that has shaped and been shaped by the dramatic arts. In recent decades, with the rise of globalization and the rise of London as a global city, London’s stages have continued to play a central role in British life, while also reflecting the influence of ideas, individuals, and practices that have originated elsewhere. All of this makes London an ideal location in which to study the contemporary diversity of theater and performance. During January, we will attend approximately twenty performances that aim to span the breadth of what London’s theaters have to offer, from productions of Shakespeare and other acknowledged masters to devised productions, site-specific works, and stage plays by emerging playwrights. These live performances will serve as the center of the course, complimented by discussion-based seminar sessions and excursions within and beyond London to relevant sites of cultural and historical interest. Although the majority of our time will be spent in London, we will spend two nights in Shakespeare’s birthplace, Stratford-upon-Avon, and one night in Oxford. Toward the end of January, the program will pause for approximately three days, during which time students will be free to pursue individual plans in London or, depending on the pandemic and other travel restrictions, elsewhere in Europe. Prerequisites: None. (ALS-A; OLE Core: Creativity)