Culture - Literature (LITR)

LITR 1150. Muslim Writers and the Qur’an (in English Translations). 4 Hours.

Covers selected writers who fairly represent a wide range of Muslim attitudes to the Qur’an. Muslim writers use the Qur’an for political and social criticism, question Qur’anic texts related to the status of women, or question the authenticity of the Qur’an itself. After 9/11, however, Muslim writers in the West have presented characters who find in the Qur’an a source of positive powers. Readings are drawn from works such as the following: Leila Aboulela, Minaret; Monica Ali, Brick Lane; Gamal Al-Ghitani, Zayni Barakat; Tehmina Durrani, Blasphemy; Nuruddin Farah, Maps; Taha Hussein, An Egyptian Childhood; Yusuf Idris, “A House of Flesh”; C. H. Kane, Ambiguous Adventure; Hanif Kureishi, The Black Album and “My Son the Fanatic”; Naguib Mahfouz, The Children of the Alley.

LITR 1250. Dante’s Inferno and Medieval Italian Culture. 4 Hours.

Introduces an overview of Dante’s Commedia focusing on the first book, “Inferno,” read in English translation. Examines the descending stages of hell; their meanings; and their social, political, and historical relevance for Dante’s society. Dante’s Divina Commedia created a powerful world, one that had a deep meaning for both the author and the reader of that time. But can one so easily understand it as constructed by the Commedia in the Middle Ages? Does Dante’s world have relevance today as well? Some scholars may say it does more so than ever. If so, how? Through analysis of selected chapters (Canti), students have an opportunity to attempt to establish their possible relevance to the modern human condition and perhaps even to themselves.

LITR 1990. Elective. 1-4 Hours.

Offers elective credit for courses taken at other academic institutions. May be repeated without limit.

LITR 2850. Apps, Memes, and Bots: Global Literature in the Age of the Internet. 4 Hours.

Introduces students to new and emerging forms of electronic literature like augmented reality applications, participatory narratives, literary apps, memes, and social media bots. Focuses on born digital literature created around the world. Explores the theories and approaches to reading electronic works in a globalized world. Offers students an opportunity to read, critique, and author works of electronic literature. Although a reading knowledge of a second language can enhance the students’ experience, the course is fully taught in English.

LITR 2990. Elective. 1-4 Hours.

Offers elective credit for courses taken at other academic institutions. May be repeated without limit.

LITR 3500. International Perspectives. 4 Hours.

Uses major representative works of fiction from the modern European tradition to introduce students to an array of theoretical and critical perspectives (cognitivism, Marxism, formalism, and identity politics). Major authors include Dostoevsky, Mann, Kafka, Camus, Duras, and Achebe. Team-taught in English by members of the modern language department. Serves as an introduction to literature for language majors, who can get credit in their field of concentration by reading some of the works in the original language.

LITR 3990. Elective. 1-4 Hours.

Offers elective credit for courses taken at other academic institutions. May be repeated without limit.

LITR 4560. Masterpieces of Spanish Literature: 18th–20th Century. 4 Hours.

Surveys the literature of eighteenth-, nineteenth-, and twentieth-century Spain. Includes the literary movements of romanticism, realism, and the Generation of ‘98. Conducted in Spanish.

LITR 4561. Masterpieces of Spanish Literature: 12th–17th Century. 4 Hours.

Traces the development of Spanish literature from the Middle Ages (las jarchas, El poema del Cid, El libro de buen amor, La Celestina) through the Renaissance and Baroque periods or Golden Age (Garcilaso de la Vega, the picaresque novel, the mystics, Cervantes, Lope de Vega, Calderon). Conducted in Spanish.

LITR 4655. Latin American Literature. 4 Hours.

Offers an overview of the major trends in Latin American narrative, poetry, drama, and essays, from Bernal Diaz through Borges and Bolaño. Studies broad cultural and political contexts, especially the Cold War period and the impact of neoliberalism. Conducted in Spanish.

LITR 4990. Elective. 1-4 Hours.

Offers elective credit for courses taken at other academic institutions. May be repeated without limit.

LITR 4992. Directed Study. 1-4 Hours.

Offers students a way of going beyond work given in the regular curriculum; may also enable students to complete major or minor requirements in certain situations. Priority is given to language majors and to juniors and seniors. May be repeated without limit.