1 semester, 3 Credits
Focuses on the creation of complex, analytic, well-supported arguments that matter in academic contexts. Students receive regular feedback on their writing, both from their peers and the instructor, and learn flexible strategies for revision. Assignments promote an awareness of stylistic conventions, rhetorical possibilities, and genuine inquiry.
ENG 161 - Introduction to Journalism
1 semester, 3 Credits
Introduces students to basic journalistic experiences including interviewing, researching, and news, feature, and sports writing. It defines both standards of journalistic writing and the legal standards that govern journalism, and combines lively writing experience with critical awareness. Prerequisite: Intensive Writing Level I Proficiency
ENG 175 - Introduction to Literature
An investigation of the three main literary genres — poetry, fiction, and drama — with an emphasis on writing. Students completing this course should be able to read with engagement and discernment, discuss literature critically, and write analytically and with an awareness of scholarly conversations. Required for English majors. Intensive Writing Level I Proficiency
ENG 204 - Literary Journalism
A plus on any résumé, magazine journalism gives students practical hands-on experience editing and publishing a literary journal. We will solicit and edit work, design and help produce The Alembic. Students will read literary texts in several genres within a critical context and formulate, discuss, and develop sophistication in critical issues. Comparative essays, close readings, and book reviews will all be part of the course.
ENG 231 - Survey of British Literature I
This course is an intensive survey of English literature from its Anglo-Saxon beginnings through the 18th century. The course traces the rise of the English language as a vehicle for literary art and emphasizes historical development of literary genres. Intensive Writing Level II Proficiency
ENG 232 - Survey of British Literature II
This is an intensive survey of English literature from Romanticism to Modernism. The course emphasizes the development of a specific British literary tradition, manifested in a variety of literary genres. Intensive Writing Level II Proficiency
ENG 285 - Introduction to Creative Writing
Introduction to Creative Writing in fiction and poetry for Creative Writing majors and other interested students. Classes discuss reading and writing assignments in seminar and workshop settings. Students keep reading journals, write substantive critiques of each other’s work, a book review on poetry or fiction, and assemble a portfolio of their work including nine poems and three short stories, all with two to four revisions.
ENG 287 - Composition Studies
Intended for upper-level students who are interested in the teaching of writing and/or the processes by which we learn to write. Offers students an overview of the history, major theories, and critical issues in the field – as well as practical experience in revising, designing assignments, giving feedback, and critically analyzing their own and others’ work. Prerequisites: Completion of Level 1 Writing Proficiency.
ENG 301 - Intermediate Writing
In this course, students will refine their writing process, polish their research and writing skills, and learn how to make effective, thesis-driven, evidence-based arguments. They will enhance their rhetorical awareness, as they analyze and discuss arguments in various genres and reflect on their own and their peers’ written work. Prerequisite: Intensive Writing Level I Proficiency
ENG 304 - History of the English Language
This course examines the historical and linguistic development of the English language as revealed through selected literary texts from the Middle Ages to the present. We will examine the technical aspects of language (semantics, syntax, phonology), as well as larger literary concerns.
ENG 305 - Medieval Literature
Varies in organization: sometimes concentrates on a major genre (Romance, Drama, Dream Vision); sometimes surveys the period (Beowulf to Malory); sometimes focuses on the richness of the last quarter of the 14th century (Gawain-Poet, Chaucer, Langland).
ENG 307 - Chaucer's Canterbury Tales
The road to Canterbury . . . A lusty Wife skilled in the “art of love”; a loud-mouthed, drunken, heavily armed Miller; a devout Parson; a Cook whose food you would never want to eat; martyred saints; knights in shining armor; damsels in distress (and not); an especially memorable kiss; sex in a pear tree; and talking chickens. Welcome to the world of Chaucer!
ENG 307 is an introduction to the life and work of Geoffrey Chaucer (c. 1342-1400), the most influential English poet of the Middle Ages. Our focus will be Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales, an exhilarating tour through the kaleidoscopic world of late medieval England, which we will read in the original Middle English. Because the course assumes no prior familiarity with Middle English, a portion of class time will be dedicated to mastering Chaucer’s language. In addition to studying the literary aspects of Chaucer’s art, we will examine medieval attitudes towards religion, morality, politics, gender, family, sex, love (both “courtly” and non-courtly), and marriage. No previous knowledge of medieval literature or language is required.
ENG 308 - Sixteenth-Century Literature
Surrey, Spenser, Sidney, Shakespeare, Marlowe, and Drayton. The course may include prose romances, especially Sidney’s Arcadia.
ENG 310 - Milton
Samples Milton’s works from his early poetry on, culminating in his great epic, Paradise Lost. The focus is on Milton’s ability to create moving experiences in his verse, as well as his original concerns about 17th-century English culture.
ENG 311 - Shakespeare: Histories and Comedies
This course concentrates on Shakespeare’s early plays, primarily comedies and histories, with close analysis of the texts in the light of relevant political, social, and cultural contexts, and with some attention to stage history and film productions.
ENG 312 - Shakespeare: Tragedies and Romances
This course concentrates on Shakespeare’s later plays, primarily tragedies and romances (or tragic-comedies), with close analysis of the texts in the light of relevant political, social, and cultural contexts, and with some attention to stage history and film productions.
ENG 313 - Renaissance Drama
A mix of comedies and tragedies from 1580-1650, including Marlowe, Kyd, Jonson, Middleton, Webster, Beaumont and Fletcher. The plays will be studied within the social and political context of early modern England.
ENG 314 - Spenser
This course provides us with the universe according to the great allegorist of Elizabethan England, Edmund Spenser. He is placed within the context of authors whom he quarried (Vergil, Ovid, Petrarch, Ariosto, Tasso, Castiglione, Sidney; two or three of these will be studied each semester) to construct his monumental poem The Faerie Queene. We will read that poem in its entirety.
ENG 316 - Chaucer: The Love Poetry
Concentrates on chaucer’s love and dream poetry, which may nclude Troilus and Criseyde, The Book of the Duchess, The House of Fame, The Parlement of Foules, and The Legend of Good Women. These early poems show Chaucer as a distinctly European poet, and they allow a thematic exploration of medieval literature, philosophy, music and the visual arts. Texts are read in Middle English but no previous experience with the language is required.
ENG 317 - Seventeenth-Century Literature
Explores three remarkable eras of British literature: the late Renaissance (1600-1642), the Interregnum (1642-1660), and the Restoration (1660-1700). The literary works of this century are as magnificent and eclectic as the culture they reflect, popularizing and refining such genres as the play, the novel, the epic, the lyric, the masque, the essay, the newspaper, and the joke book.
ENG 320 - Early American Literature
Examines early American texts, particularly the literature of colonial New England. Inquires how early New World encounters, as recorded and interpreted in the era’s autobiographical and other writings, shaped the lives and identities of Native Americans, conquerors, settlers, slaves, and post-Revolutionary Americans. Topics include the impact of emerging print culture on the development of American democracy. Same as AMS 320. Intensive Writing Level II Proficiency
ENG 321 - Age of Satire
Explores a range of works published during the Restoration and early 18th century, but concentrates on satire. We shall consider the works of major and minor writers, including Dryden, Rochester, Defoe, Swift, Pope, and Fielding.
ENG 322 - Age of Johnson
Examines changes in the definition, use, and manufacturing of literature that took place from roughly 1745 to 1800.We shall consider the works of major and minor writers, including Fielding, Gray, Sterne, Blackstone, Gibbon, Boswell, and Burns. Special attention will be paid to the writings of Samuel Johnson.
ENG 349 - Nature and the Arts
Looks at the poems of Virgil and 17th-century continental landscape painting, then examines the ways 18th and 19th century British writers and artists adapted these models to express their own attitudes towards nature and rural life. Writers include Milton, Gray, Wollstonecraft, and Wordsworth; artists include Claude, Rubens, Gainsborough, Constable, and Turner. Usually includes fieldtrips to the Hay Library at Brown to view their works on 18th-century landscape gardening, to the RISD Museum to view their collection of British landscape watercolors, and to the Yale Center for British Art to view the collection of Constable and Turner landscapes.
ENG 351 - Romantic Age
From semester to semester, Romantic Age has different thematic emphases, such as Romanticism and Nature, Romantic Representations of Women, Romanticism and Revolution, and Romantic Ballad and Song. The reading list may include Austen, Baillie, Blake, Byron, Coleridge, Keats, Scott, Mary and Percy Shelley, Wollstonecraft, and Wordsworth. Intensive Writing Level II Proficiency
ENG 353 - The Victorian Age
Social reform, shifting perceptions of religion and science, expanding empires, and aesthetic experimentation defined the Victorians and produced new literary genres. Thematic emphasis of this course varies but always connects Victorian literature and its social context. Authors combine the canonical (Dickens, Tennyson, the Brownings, Wilde) with pioneers of sci fi, detective fiction, and children’s literature (Wells, Conan Doyle, Carroll, etc.).
ENG 354 - Nineteenth-Century British Novel
Focuses on 19th-century novels in a variety of styles: realistic, Gothic, sensationalistic, comic, and horror. Students will investigate how these novels fit, develop, or disrupt novelistic conventions and social expectations of their day, particularly those concerning social class, gender roles, and imperialistic British nationality. Major authors may include Austen, Dickens, Eliot, the Brontës, Trollope, Collins, and Stoker. Same as WMS 354.
ENG 355 - American Literature to 1865
Concentrates on the period of the American Renaissance (1836-1860) with some attention to earlier writings. Authors may include Franklin, Poe, Emerson, Cooper, Douglass, Jacobs, Thoreau, Hawthorne, Stowe, Melville, Dickinson, and Whitman. The central topics concern the variety of responses to the question of American democratic opportunity, the frontier, and slavery.
ENG 356 - American Literature 1865 - 1914
Surveys American literature through some of the most difficult years in our history, the years of industrialization, urbanization, mass immigration, Reconstructiion and Jim Crow. Authors may include Twain, James, Dreiser, Dickinson, Chesnutt, Crane, Gilman, Robinson, Cahan, Wharton, and Frost.
ENG 357 - Modern Drama
A survey of drama including authors such as Ibsen, Strindberg, Wilde, Chekhov, Lorca, Yeats, Giraudoux, O’Neill, Pirandello, Albee, Miller, and Williams. The course explores the development of drama in its social, political, and psychological contexts.
ENG 358/ENG 359 - Communications Internship
Juniors and seniors may obtain internships at local businesses and agencies to develop and apply skills in writing and analysis, in the workplace. In addition to the 10-15 hours per week of supervised experience, students must compose and fulfill a contractual learning agreement. Pass/Fail credit only.
ENG 360 - Modern Irish Literature
A survey of Irish literature from 1880 to the present. Emphasis is placed on the Literary Revival (1880-1940). Authors include Yeats, Synge, Joyce, O’Casey, Lady Gregory, O’Faolain, O’Connor, O’Flaherty, Beckett, Bowen, Heaney, and Friel. Topics include the appeal of the past, literature and politics, the formation of a new Ireland, and the problem of violence.
ENG 363 - Twentieth-Century British Novel
Surveys the pre-World War I period, the inter-war years, and the post-1945 period. Authors include Conrad, Joyce, D.H. Lawrence, Forster, Woolf, Greene, Ford, Orwell, Waugh, Burgess, and others. Occasionally, non-British works are included. Topics for discussion range from the modernist revolt and the age of crisis, to the tensions between tradition and change.
ENG 364 - Modern American Fiction
Covers American fiction since World War I. Authors include Anderson, Hemingway, Fitzgerald, Cather, Dos Passos, Faulkner, Welty, O’Connor, Salinger, Heller, Percy, Pynchon, Morrison, and Fellow. Topics for discussion include the search for identity through tradition, the disillusionment of the ’30s, the Southern Renaissance, and the problematics of mass society. Crosslisted with: AMS 364-001
ENG 365 - Twentieth-Century African American Literature
A reading-intensive introduction to 20th-century African-American fiction, autobiography, drama, and poetry, with particular attention to social and cultural contexts. Writers include Nella Larsen, Ralph Ellison, Amiri Baraka, Toni Morrison, John Edgar Wideman, and Anna Deavere Smith. Focus on race, class, and gender, and on the authors' approaches to the role of literary arts in society. Fulfills the Core Curriculum’s Writing II and Diversity proficiencies. Crosslisted with: BLS 365-001 and AMS 365-001
Intensive Writing Level II Proficiency, Diversity Proficiency
ENG 366 - Developments in Twentieth-Century Fiction
The focus is high Modernist prose fiction — Joyce, Proust, Stein, Woolf, Beckett, and others — with a glance at the predecessors — Balzac and Flaubert — and at the post-Modern followers.
ENG 368 - Twentieth-Century American Drama
Surveys American drama from O’Neill to the present. Dramatists include O’Neill, Miller, Williams, Albee, Hellman, Wilder, and others.
ENG 369 - Women in Literature
Explores great works of fiction, poetry, and drama by women. Critical analysis of literature considers differing forms of literary criticism, including psychoanalytical theory, feminist theory, Marxist criticism, and historicism. Emphasis on the analytical categories of gender, class, race, ethnicity, age, physical condition of writers, and the societies they depict. Victorian to Contemporary writers. Same as WMS 369.
ENG 370 - Global and Postcolonial Literature
Examines contemporary global and postcolonial literature. Focuses on novels and short stories from countries and regions that were formerly part of the British Empire, with an emphasis on Anglophone Caribbean, African, and Indian fiction. Key themes: globalization; the effects of colonization and decolonization on the identities of the decolonized; and migration, exile, diaspora, displacement, and belonging. Intensive Writing Level II Proficiency, Diversity Proficiency
ENG 371 - Contemporary Poetry
A study of poets in the English-speaking world from about 1940 to present. Auden, Thomas, Lowell, Plath, Bly, Levertov, Heaney, Kinnell, Brooks, Olson, Creeley, and Walcott are representative of the new post-Modernism, a definition of which is still evolving.
ENG 372 - Contemporary Drama
A survey of drama from 1960 to the present. Emphasizes the relationship between the theater and national identity, and discusses how issues involving race, gender, language, and culture are represented in plays from a variety of nations. Diversity Proficiency
ENG 373 - U.S. Fiction Since 1960
The focus is on prominent writing done or recognized in this period with attention to the infection of nonfiction with fictional techniques and the “democratization” of the term literature to include sci-fi, mystery, reportorial writing, and the wide range of ethnic and gender concerns.
ENG 375 - Page to Screen
What happens when a printed work is transformed into a movie? In this course, we’ll trace the art and history of cinematic adaptation. Because the variety of sources that have been adapted into films in astonishing, we’ll look at many different kinds of works – stories, novels, poems, plays – and investigate the extents and limitations of literature and film.
ENG 376 - Toni Morrison
Examines a selection of novels by the 1993 Nobel laureate Toni Morrison. Analyzes her dialogue with African American and American history, with an emphasis on individual and communal trauma, memory, and healing. Selected, accessible Morrison scholarship will be studied as well, with a focus on race, class, and gender, and on Morrison’s strategies as a creative writer. Same as AMS 376, BLS 376 & WMS 376. Diversity Proficiency
ENG 380 - Creative Writing in Fiction
This course helps students learn to write short stories. Exercises are designed to strengthen students’ skill in rendering the elements of fiction. All work is discussed in a workshop situation. An anthology of short stories is read along with students’ work. A folio of exercises, short stories, and revisions provides the basis for the course grade. Fine Arts Core Requirement
ENG 381 - Creative Writing: Poetry
This course helps students learn to write poetry. Exercises are designed to sharpen students’ skill in rendering the elements of poetry. All work is discussed in a workshop situation. An anthology of poetry is read along with student work. A folio of exercises, poems, and revisions provides the basis for the course grade. Fine Arts Core Requirement
ENG 384 - Contemporary Rhetorical Theory
Familiarizes students with a range of key issues, questions, and debates in contemporary rhetorical theory. Writing focuses on applications of theoretical ideas to the analysis of contemporary cultural texts, civic concerns, current events, and issues of academic and/or personal interest. Students learn to collaborate, revise, and compose in diverse genres and modes. Prerequisites: Completion of Level I Writing Proficiency.
ENG 385 - Advanced Writing
Explores the art of the essay by reading selected works of major essayists, analyzing carefully their prose style, and using their works as models for imitation. By semester’s end, students will write original essays that demonstrate their control of the essay form, and their understanding of various techniques of prose style. Prerequisite: Intensive Writing Level I Proficiency.
ENG 390 - Law and Literature
Introduces students to both literary and legal texts, careful to identify and consider similarities and differences in literary and legal expression. Explores how both lawyers and writers handle legal matters. What, if anything, do they or can they learn from one another? Why are so many great writers drawn to the law?
ENG 391 - Film Noir and the Noir Novel
One of the most fascinating of twentieth-century genres is the “dark cinema” that flourished in the 1940’s and 1950’s as well as its literary antecedent, the roman noir or “dark novel.” In this course, we’ll study this genre, whose tales of crime and deceit involve fascinating relationships between men and women, love and theft, community and isolation, guilt and obsession. Same as TDF 324
ENG 400 - Literary Criticism and Theory
An intensive examination of major works of literary criticism, from Plato to the present. Students will learn to write theoretically about literature and will be asked to apply specific critical methods to literary works. Readings may include Plato, Aristotle, Coleridge, Nietzsche, Freud, Derrida, Foucault, Nussbaum, and Cixous. Prerequisite for students writing a senior thesis. Intensive Level II Proficiency
ENG 440 - Studies in Literature*
Explores special topics not covered in regular offerings; may not be repeated from year to year. The following Studies in Literature topics have been offered recently: Nature and the Arts, 18th-Century Novel, Medieval Romance, and Law and Literature.
*Fall 2015, Nature and the Arts, Intensive Writing II Proficiency
ENG 441 - Studies in Literature*
Explores special topics not covered in regular offerings; may not be repeated from year to year. The following Studies in Literature topics have been offered recently: Comedy in American Poetry, Holocaust Literature, and Romantic Novel.
*Fall 2015, Introduction to Composition Studies, Intensive Writing II Proficiency
ENG 442 - Seminar: The Prose Poem
Designed to be both a literature and a creative writing course. Introduces students to prose poetry, and traces the development of its tradition both here and abroad. Scrutinizes this hybrid form and traces its enigmatic history. Students will also write some prose poems.
ENG 460/ENG 461 - Tutorials
Tutorials provide individualized, independent study of a particular concept, topic, theme, or author, as well as advanced creative and/or expository writing. The student and instructor agree upon a mutual area of interest, the direction of study, and the nature and frequency of the meetings.
ENG 480/ENG 481 - Seminars*
Seminars explore intensively a selected literary concept, genre, topic, or author. Classes are small in size and offer students the opportunity for oral presentations, leadership of class discussion, and a major research project. Recent seminar topics include Wordsworth, Literature of Spiritual Crisis, The Prose Poem, Women and Slavery, Yeats and Joyce, and New York Avant-Garde.
*Fall 2015, Joyce and Yeats, Joyce and Yeats, Oral Communication Proficiency
ENG 488 - Seminar: Poetry Capstone
Builds on the craft skills acquired in ENG 381 in a smaller class with an intense focus on revision and critical reading. Students are encouraged to write more extensively while also concentrating with greater sophistication on applying ideas about prosody, form, and subject matter. The course culminates in a final portfolio of twelve poems, a book review of a contemporary poet, and a recitation.
ENG 489 - Seminar: Fiction Capstone
This is an advanced writing workshop, building on skills acquired in earlier English and Creative Writing courses. In addition to reading a selection of short fiction, students are expected to write and workshop their own short stories. At the end of the course students submit a bound volume of their short stories prefaced with brief scholarly introduction.
ENG 490 - Independent Study
ENG 498/ENG 499 - Senior Thesis
Designed for seniors wishing to undertake a significant research project. Students work with a faculty advisor who will guide them from the planning stages of the thesis to its completion. A written proposal must be approved by a faculty advisor and department chair before registering. The thesis will be evaluated by the advisor and a second reader. Prerequisite: ENG 400.