Upper-Division Seminar: Mind and Modernism

Course Number: ENGL 197
Prerequisites: Check on GOLD
Advisory Enrollment Information: This course cannot be repeated and is limited to upper-division English majors only.
General Education Areas Fulfilled: Check on GOLD
Catalog Course Entry: ENGL 197
Quarter: Fall 2012
Day(s): MW
Time: 11:00-12:15pm
Location: SH 2617

How does our understanding of the human mind shape our understandings of community, politics, and ethics? At the turn of the twentieth century, new ideas about the unconscious, the body’s lived experience in time, behavior, and habit inspired a wide array of formal literary experiments. We’ll think about what those experiments mean for definitions of “modernism,” as we examine how ideas from Sigmund Freud, Henri Bergson, William James, John B. Watson and others relate to some of the most convincing and enduring literary representations of skepticism, race relations, human connection, isolation, sympathy, memory, and desire. Works and selections from Henry James, Charlotte Perkins Gilman, W.E.B. Du Bois, Gertrude Stein, Marianne Moore, Wallace Stevens, Jean Toomer, Marcel Proust, Eugene O’Neill, William Faulkner, Nella Larsen, Samuel Beckett, and Alfred Hitchcock. Requirements include a formal presentation, active seminar participation, a five-page essay, and a final research project.