Spring 2020 - ENGL 111W D100
Literary Classics in English (3)
Class Number: 1326
Delivery Method: In Person
Examines literary “classics”, variously defined, apprehending them both on their own terms and within larger critical conversations. May incorporate the comparative study of work in related artistic fields and engage relevant media trends. Includes attention to writing skills. Students with credit for ENGL 101W may not take this course for further credit. Writing/Breadth-Humanities.
The summer of 1816 was dreary, wet and cold in post-Napoleonic Europe. An eighteen-year old Mary Wollstonecraft Godwin was travelling in with her lover, Percy Shelley, when the two struck up a friendship with the infamous poet, Lord Byron and his physician, John Polidori. During the course of three rainy days in June, the four friends, plus Mary’s stepsister, Claire Clairmont, found themselves confined by the weather to Byron’s residence near Geneva, entertaining themselves by discussing galvanism and reading ghost stories. When Byron suggested that they each write a ghost story of their own, Mary took up the challenge, eventually publishing one of the most influential novels of all time: Frankenstein; or, the Modern Prometheus. In this course, we will go back to that eighteen-year old girl writing at a crucial time period in history, as we analyze Frankensteinin relation to the literary, political, scientific and environmental events of the day. We will also examine the process through which Frankensteincame to occupy such an important role in cultural memory as we study a number of more contemporary works that revisit some of the themes that Frankensteinraise. Like Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein, Philip K. Dick’s Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep, Margaret Atwood’s Oryx and Crake and Cherie Dimaline’s The Marrow Thieves also wrestle with the ethics of scientific inquiry, the fostering of empathy for socially marginalized individuals, the place of humanity in the natural world, and the meaning of life in general. Our journey of enquiry will also take us through a number of different genres as we consider the legacy of Frankenstein in films, video games and websites as well as books.
- 3 in-class essays 3 x 25%
- Revision of an in-class essay 10%
- Tutorial work (including take-home and in-class work) 10%
- Attendance, preparation and participation 5%
Philip K. Dick, DO ANDROIDS DREAM OF ELECTRIC SHEEP
Margaret Atwood, ORYX & CRAKE
Cherie Dimaline, THE MARROW THIEVES
Mary Shelley, FRANKENSTEIN; OR, THE MODERN PROMETHEUS (online text)
Department Undergraduate Notes:
IMPORTANT NOTE Re 300 and 400 level courses: 75% of spaces in 300 level English courses, and 100% of spaces in 400 level English courses, are reserved for declared English Major, Minor, Extended Minor, Joint Major, and Honours students only, until open enrollment begins.
For all On-Campus Courses, please note the following:
- To receive credit for the course, students must complete all requirements.
- Tutorials/Seminars WILL be held the first week of classes.
- When choosing your schedule, remember to check "Show lab/tutorial sections" to see all Lecture/Seminar/Tutorial times required.
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