Jul 14, 2024  
2013-2014 Academic Catalog 
2013-2014 Academic Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

ENG 290-01 - Introduction to Literary Theory (Fall)

4 credits (Fall)
This course is designed to introduce key concepts and issues that inform debates about the place of literature in the life of the mind. As we proceed, we will examine the shifting interrelationship between text and context that helps shape the contours of literary criticism from the classical period to our postmodern moment. This particular version of ENG 290 is grounded in an age-old question: does literature have a role to play in the regulation of a State? In Plato’s Republic, for example, poetry is exiled unless and until it can “prove her title to exist in a well-ordered state,” and in Shakespeare’s Hamlet, poetry (or its dramatic equivalent) is instrumental in exposing a “truth” that the State does not wish to express. Using the Republic and Hamlet as our interpretative framework, we will explore the “ancient quarrel between philosophy and poetry” in selected readings that run the gamut from classical and renaissance philosophers and poets to more recent ground-breaking theoretical essays that focus on Hamlet in order to examine a particular critical problem. A premium will be placed on class discussion.

Prerequisite or co-requisite: ENG 120  or ENG 121  for majors; for non majors, ENG 120  or ENG 121  or any course in the study of literature in another language department.
Note: Plus-2 option available.
Instructor: Andrews