Fall 2019

ENG 2100 Intro to Literary Studies

  • Lower Level

  • Prerequisite(s):WRT 1060 (or equivalent) with a grade of C or higher and English major or minor standing


An introduction to literary studies, close reading, literary devices, research practices, and writing for English majors and minors.


In this course we will read samples from each major literary genre: prose fiction, poetry, drama, and non-fiction. Students will master close reading and literary explication skills, take weekly reading comprehension quizzes, complete short close-reading papers, and one long research paper.


We will use a “slow learning” method, spending more time on fewer texts to fully flex our skills at reading them thoroughly. Authors we will explore include William Shakespeare, Robert Browning, Emily Dickinson, Eliza Haywood, Aphra Behn, and more.

ENG 3600 Fiction: Frame Narratives

  • Upper Level

  • Satisfies the University General Education Requirement in the 'Literature Knowledge Exploration' Area

  • Prerequisites: WRT 1060 (or equivalent) with a grade of Cor higher and junior standing


Stories within stories. Unreliable narrators. Letters, journals, flashbacks, and confessions. What influences readers of a story beyond the text itself? How does prose fiction uniquely lend itself to outside influences? This class will explore prose fiction that is told as a frame narrative, or is surrounded by other texts and media which influence how consumers read it over time. Works we will explore may include: Frankenstein, Heart of Darkness, Maus, The Handmaid’s Tale, and others. Assignments may include: in-person and online surveys of book-covers, popular culture analysis, close-reading, reading comprehension quizzes, and a creative interpretation final project.

Winter 2020

ENG 3220: Observing & Recording the Eighteenth Century

  • Upper Level

  • Prerequisites: ENG 2100


Reading across various genres—novels, poetry, periodicals, broadsides, plays, diaries, travelogues—we will study what and how people recorded the world around them in the eighteenth century. We will track records across the century to study how writers explored issues of race, gender, colonialism, class, sexuality, and more.


We will explore Special Collections, and find texts that uniquely observe and record the reaches of eighteenth-century England's empire, and create digital editions to make these works freely available to researchers around the world for the first time.

ENG 4900 (Capstone) History & Theories of the Book

  • Upper Level

  • Satisfies the University General Education Requirement for the Capstone experience; satisfies the University General Education requirement for Writing Intensive in the Major Area

  • Prerequisite for Writing Intensive: Completion of the University Writing Foundation Requirement

  • Prerequisites: ENG 2100 & at least two of the three required 3000-level British & American literary history courses; or permission of the instructor


For this capstone seminar students will study the material object that has for most of history contained the literature we read—the book. Beginning with clay tablets, illuminated manuscripts, and papyrus scrolls, students will learn the history of “book” production, and the theory behind the study of books, & bibliography. Examining the print-shop of Early Modern Europe, Japanese woodblock and silk printing, through hyperlinks and eBooks, this class will ask students to think about how the vehicle that literature students study so deeply influences the way we understand and consume literature.


Much of this class will be spent in “lab” hours in Kresge Library’s Special Collections working hands-on with books up to 400 years old. Students will produce a final project equivalent to a research essay, but taking various forms.

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