Syllabi

My courses have ranged from English 101, "Introduction to Expository Writing," to graduate courses on "Women and Modernism." Here are a few sample syllabi. Please contact me for more information about any of these courses.

Human Body and Identity

The Human Body and Identity English/Biology block course considers English literature, biological science, and the interplay between the two to investigate how we as humans understand ourselves as species, race, gender and individuals. Understanding our identity often begins with our origin stories. Thus, we will begin by examining various origin models such as those provided to us by literature and by science, starting with scientific understandings presented by Charles Darwin's Theory of Evolution by Natural Selection and proceeding to insights provided by modern genetics and genomics, in order to explore how our ideas of identity have changed ... .

View full syllabus.

Women's Studies: Women and the World

In this course, we will consider a wide range of studies by and about women in two parts:

  1. First, we will investigate the global history of women's issues including the "three waves" of feminism, women's suffrage, women's rights and contemporary women's lives.
  2. The second half of the semester will extend these investigations into contemporary issues such as work, media, body image, poverty, violence, homophobia and human trafficking.

View full syllabus.

British Modernism & War

In this course, we will consider the response to war by modernist writers. The following questions will guide our query into the conflation between war and modernism ... .

View full syllabus.

J.K. Rowling and the Worlds of Harry Potter

What's so magical about Harry Potter? As literary critics, we will attempt to answer this question in five short weeks and seven long-ish books. To do so, we will explore the works of J.K. Rowling and the issues of the multiple worlds of Harry Potter including family, education, publication and censorship, courtship, sex, death and mourning, reality and fantasy, fandom, pedagogy, and author studies. This will be a reading and writing intensive course, concluding in a lengthy research paper. Constant vigilance will be required, and heroic deeds will be rewarded. Take heart and charge!

View full syllabus.

Introduction to English Studies

In this course, we will begin our journey as literary critics by considering three literary genres - poetry, drama and fiction - and the various strategies for reading, analyzing and writing about them. We will begin with Michael Pollan's Botany of Desire which we will use as a case study on research and argumentation methods. As we proceed, we will consider the following questions ... .

View full syllabus.

British Modernisms

In this course, we will consider various modernisms and their incarnations: poetry, fiction, and essay; imagism and vorticism; English and Irish (and a few Americans); male and female; war and peace; known and unknown. The following questions will guide our query in to all things "modern" ... .

View full syllabus.

Virginia Woolf and Bloomsbury

This summer, we will study several of the works of Virginia Woolf in the context of her community of friends, lovers and foes, often referred to as The Bloomsbury Group. We will discuss the literary works of her contemporaries such as Lytton Strachey, Katherine Mansfield, T.S. Eliot, Leonard Woolf, D.H. Lawrence and E.M. Forster as well as her correspondence with Vita Sackville-West, Vanessa Bell and others. In addition, we will consider the corresponding developments by other members of The Bloomsbury Group in areas of painting, design, economics, politics and cultural critique. As part of our examination of these works, we will consider the development of Woolf's ideas about art, gender, nation and the experimentations within each ... .

View full syllabus.

British Literature History II

Welcome to a survey of British Literature from 1700 to the present! In this course, we will be exploring five developmental units of British Literature: the 18th Century, Romanticism, Victorianism, Modernism, and Contemporary Literature. Rather than trying to cover every author writing and every text produced during this long period, we will pursue a more rigorous understanding of the philosophy and contexts of each unit ... .

View full syllabus.

Readings in British Literature

This summer, we will be reading a wide range of British literature, from William Shakespeare to Virginia Woolf, and in the process discuss the forms of chivalry, courtship, epic and heroes/heroines from the Renaissance through the Modern periods ... .

View full syllabus.

Introduction to Expository Writing

I knew a man who was a great mountain climber. One day, a friend asked him, "What's the best training for mountain climbing? Biking? Weights?" The man looked at him, mystified, and said, "The best training for climbing is climbing." So, too, the best training for writing is writing. In this class we will write and write and write. We will cross-train by writing in different modes and genres, from free-writing to non-fiction narratives to formal argumentative essays. Our mission here is to become better writers and to be able to write successfully for multiple audiences (professors and professionals). Charge!

View full syllabus.

Masterpieces of British Literature: Masterpieces and Responses

In this course, we will look at five "masterpieces" (Twelfth Night, Paradise Lost, Pride and Prejudice, Heart of Darkness, and Mrs. Dalloway) and responses to them (Shakespeare in Love, The Marriage of Heaven and Hell, Bridget Jones' Diary, The God of Small Things, and The Hours). As part of our analysis, we will look at the issues of and connections between gender, land, nation, and text.

View full syllabus.

Women Writers: Women and Bodies

In this course, we will look at the relationship between women and the body in four forms: the physical body, the geographical body, the national body, and the textual body. For this excavation, we will be reading the following texts as a class: Quicksand by Nella Larsen, Spleen by Olive Moore, The God of Small Things by Arundhati Roy, and Mrs. Dalloway by Virginia Woolf.

View full syllabus.

Shakespeare for Non-Majors: Interpretation and Performance

How does one read and interpret Shakespeare? What are the processes, choices, consequences and effects of interpretation in the reading and performing of Shakespeare? In this course, we will read several of Shakespeare's sonnets and plays with the following focuses:

  1. reading, understanding, analyzing the texts
  2. posing possible interpretations of the texts
  3. analyzing interpretations of the texts in performance.

In addition, we'll consider the portrayal and discussion of these issues: justice/mercy, nature/nurture, death/mourning, monsters/monstrosities, sexuality/gender representation, the fool, and the performance of self.

View full syllabus.

Graduate Pedagogy Workshop

This workshop is designed to prepare you to teach in the college English classroom and to practice different methods of teaching and different ways of thinking about teaching. We will be calling on experienced faculty and graduate students to present their ideas on and experiments in teaching. We will also be presenting mini-lessons for each other, and this microteaching will give us a chance to test our legs and try new ones.

View full syllabus.