Upper Division and Graduate English Courses

Fall 2017

Upper-Division Course Rotation


Prerequisite: Completion of English 111 and 112 or their equivalents


305-001 The Art of the Essay MW 3:00-4:15 CRN: 41273
505-001 CRN: 41652
Heidi Huse
The Craft of Essay Writing in the 21st Century
The sky’s the limit for essay writing in an oral, print, visual, and digital age! Essays today can be prepared for oral delivery as very traditionally-structured exposition, as letters, as online blogs, or as multi-modal exposition that encompasses all of the above. This semester we will examine the essay writing of others—from famed essayists writing about the essay itself, to “great American essays” on topics relevant to us today, to essays from the past, to a variety of online blogs and exposition, to focused single-topic essays. The essays that students read will inspire their own written, visual, digital, and multi-modal first person, second person, and third person audience-driven essay writing: personal narrative essays; source-based argumentation and calls to action; and reflective or research-based exposition. Students will leave the course with a variety of possibilities for not only college essays, but for every personal, professional, or civic writing purpose students might encounter as global citizens, local community members, writers, educators, and digital communicators.


310-001 Fiction Workshop TR 1:00-2:15 CRN: 41294
510-001 CRN: 41653
David Carithers

This course is for people who want to write fiction for the first time, those who want to become stronger writers of fiction, and anyone looking for a reason to write regularly. Readings and assignments will focus on character-driven literary short stories, but we will also experiment with flash fiction and sci-fi/fantasy pieces. The class will be conducted as if we were a voluntary group of writers meeting for the purpose of improving our craft through in-class writing, workshopping of drafts in progress, and discussion of the published works of others. We will also experience the publishing process through the production of a class anthology and submission of one work to a literary journal or contest.


325-001 Technical Communications TR 8:00-9:15 CRN: 41276
525-001 CRN: 41654
325-002 Technical Communications TR 9:30-10:45 CRN: 41282
525-002 CRN: 41655
Trisha Capansky
Technical Communication for Career and Life Management
This course equips you with tools for marketing yourself so that you are a viable contender in the job market. The course also offers you an understanding of the language used in contracts, legal documents, bank statements, and government reports so that you are prepared to protect your credit, identity, and assets. Career planning will help you negotiate advancement opportunities, salary increases, benefit packages, and other incentives for the quality of life you hope to obtain. You will be provided with skills and strategies to help you address a variety of communication tasks in workplace environments. Personal planning will help you prepare for obstacles such as financial setbacks, job loss, auto repair, healthcare, bankruptcy, and identity theft. Your ability to maneuver through life’s opportunities and obstacles largely depends on how well you understand the fine print in technical documents and the communication process. This course is taught as a hybrid to create an environment where students have a greater amount of time to reflect upon the issues and materials discussed, and demonstrate their reflection through thought-provoking, soundly developed arguments.


341-001 American Literature before 1900 TR 8:00-9:15 CRN: 41277
Charles Bradshaw
Performing the Frontier in Early America
Throughout the nineteenth century, Americans depended increasingly upon romanticized ideals of the disappearing frontier to symbolize their uniqueness. We’ll examine how early American literature participated in this process by looking at representations of the frontier in writings by Charles Brockden Brown, James Fenimore Cooper, Robert Montgomery Bird, Emma Dorothy Southworth and others. However, we’ll also look at how the frontier helped create two of America’s most iconic figures, Mark Twain and Buffalo Bill Cody, as they projected their own versions of the frontier to a world-wide audience through their travels, their writing, and their performances. Students will write two shorter analytical papers, and a final project will involve researching and writing a scholarly introduction for a frontier novel that they “recover” themselves.


343-001 Literatures of Contemporary America TR 11:00-12:15 CRN: 41289
543-001 CRN: 41656
David Carithers
[This course will be team-taught with Spanish Assistant Professor Sylvia Morin and cross-listed with SPAN 350: Masterpieces of Spanish and Spanish-American Literature. Students may register and receive credit for either ENGL 343 or SPAN 350.]
Join Dr. Carithers and Dr. Morin in a discussion of literature written across and within the borders of the Americas, particularly those between the United States, Mexico, and Central and South America. Covering the giants of the genre in Jorge Luis Borges and Gabriel García Márquez as well as emerging artists—with room along the way for Junot Díaz’s best-seller The Brief and Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao—this course will explore the diverse American experience with a focus on cross-cultural and multi-gendered Latin-American perspectives. Required reading includes short stories and novels and features an equal distribution of male and female authors. Student learning will be assessed through weekly reading journals and a midterm and final research paper. All readings and discussions will be in English.


350-001 Women Writers (Gender, Race, and Class) MWF 12:00-12:50 CRN: 41254
Melvin Hill
Women in Speculative Fiction
Speculative Fiction includes multiple genres that not only entertain but also educate (“edutainment”), which underlines the uneasiness about the world in which we live and the world that awaits us. The novels and short stories for this course are written by women of diverse backgrounds, and who address issues of gender, race, sexuality, and the struggles women face in an ever-evolving technological society. Some of the works will cover transhumanism, apocalyptic interpretations/visions of the future, and ideas of survivalist realism. This course will explore Margaret Cavendish’s The Description of a New World, Called the Blazing World (1666), Mary Shelly’s Frankenstein; or, The Modern Prometheus (1818), Leslie Marmon Silko’s Ceremony (1977), Sabrina Vourvoulias’ Ink (2012), and Octavia Butler’s Kindred, Graphic Novel Edition (1979, 2017). This course will offer critical insights into SF as well as address questions brought forth by women in the genre.


380-001 Modern Drama TR 1:00-2:15 CRN: 41295
580-001 CRN: 41657
Jeff Longacre
In his 1997 film Deconstructing Harry, Woody Allen’s character quips: “When I was younger it was less scary waiting for Lefty than it is waiting for Godot.” If you don’t get the joke, which refers to famous plays by American playwright Clifford Odets and Irish playwright Samuel Beckett, then you will after taking this class! The twentieth century was when drama got real, then got absurd, then got real absurd. In this course, we will define and chart the evolution of modern drama through a survey of many of the representative plays of the twentieth century, including plays by American, British, Irish, and a few continental playwrights, including, Henrik Ibsen, August Strindberg, Bertolt Brecht, Eugene O’Neill, Tennessee Williams, Arthur Miller, Samuel Beckett, Harold Pinter, Tom Stoppard, Caryl Churchill, Brian Friel, and Tony Kushner. In addition to English majors and minors, this course is particularly useful to those students interested in theater arts, fine arts, or film studies. This course may substitute for 3 hours of your upper-division American OR British Literature requirements as long as you have not already used a substitution in the respective area; ask your advisor if you qualify!


425-001 Advanced Grammar TR 2:30-3:45 CRN: 41298
625-001 CRN: 41658
Heidi Huse
English Grammar in the Age of Texts and Tweets
Advanced Grammar focuses on the system and pattern of English at the word and sentence levels. We’ll look closely at the specific elements in basic sentence patterns and parts of speech in formal usage, in our current context of digital communication. We’ll examine those elements that remain foundational as English continues to evolve, as all languages do. We will also look at grammar from a rhetorical perspective, particularly at the role it plays in establishing a writer’s/speaker’s ethos and in communicating effectively to any audience. Selected stories and plays can help us to critique grammatical evolution in a community’s or individual’s growth and empowerment. Teaching grammar will be woven throughout the entire course.


435-001 Fantasy Literature TR 9:30-10:45 CRN: 41283
640-001 CRN: 21744
John Glass
Fantasy Literature may well be the twentieth century’s defining literary genre, and how or why that is true is partly the focus of this course. Students in English 435 will begin by reading two nineteenth century works that influenced the development of fantasy literature generally and the imaginations of C.S. Lewis and J.R.R. Tolkien particularly. The course will then turn to its primary focus: a selection of Lewis’s Narnia books and a close study of Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings. We will finish by looking at Rowling’s Harry Potter series. Discussion will be guided by the overarching goal of understanding fantasy literature as a reflection of its age. What is it about the most successful fantasy literature that can account for its remarkable popularity? And what themes and elements make the best—and most popular—fantasy literature literary? Students will need to consider not only the language and subjects in the works we read, but also the ways in which those works relay on mythological, literary, and spiritual sources to shape the worlds they present. Students will write two papers and take mid-term and final exams. Students in any year and pursuing any major are welcome and encouraged to consider this elective. For students not taking this as an elective, the course satisfies three hours credit for British Literature.


480-001 Chaucer MWF 10:00-10:50 CRN: 41246
680-001 CRN: 41660
Daniel Pigg
English 480 considers one of the greatest writers in the canon of British literature: Geoffrey Chaucer. As a writer, Chaucer was experimental in his use of various literary forms (romance, fabliau, saint’s legend, lyric, and epic). Most readers now are drawn to the sense of irony and humor that he develops in his texts concerning the state of the world and human actions. Chaucer is a poet of his age—the late fourteenth century—but his works also transcend those bounds. We will consider not only his well-known Canterbury Tales, but also his romance epic Troilus and Criseyde and the elegiac Book of the Duchess. Chaucer will be seen both as a typical medieval poet as well as an exemplary writer.


485-001 Shakespeare MWF 11:00-11:50 CRN: 41252
685-001 CRN: 41661
Chris Hill
This will be a broad introduction to Shakespeare’s dramatic writing, focusing on a few political tragedies as well as some of the more complicated problem comedies. The centerpiece of the course will be three history plays that examine political lessons from the reigns of Richard II and Henry IV. Our texts will include useful ancillary materials to discuss as a class, and we will use film adaptations to talk about choices of staging and interpretation. Students can expect to do both formal and informal writing about the plays.


494-001 Internship in English by Arrangement CRN: 41304
David Carithers

The Internship in English is an opportunity for students to gain experience in the use of both written and oral communications in the world of work. This internship is not monetarily compensated. Course performance is based on an agreement between the interning student and the Chair of the Department of English and Modern Foreign Languages. The student will submit a portfolio of work to be evaluated. See the UT Martin Catalog for further information.


499-001 Capstone (1 credit hour) T 9:30-10:45 CRN: 41284
Chris Hill

As the final course required of all English majors, Capstone gives you the opportunity to create a portfolio of your best writing as the culmination of your English studies. Constructed as a process-oriented class, Capstone will help hone critical thinking, research, writing, and editing skills as you expand and revise writing from previous classes. Capstone also will help you craft a graduate-length paper under the direction of department faculty. Whether you are preparing for graduate school, a career in teaching or writing, or if you’re looking to improve some of the skills you have developed over your college career, this course will give you concrete evidence to show others what you have accomplished.


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