2014-2015

English

The English Department offers language, literature and writing studies on several levels. It provides varied experiences in the careful reading of literary texts and it promotes Willamette's writing culture.

Requirements for the English Major (10 Credits)

Core courses

Two courses in literature written before 1800, at the 300 or 400 level, only one of which may be a Shakespeare course (2)

One course in American Ethnic or Post-Colonial Literature, at the 300 or 400 level (1)

  • ENGL 326 Literature of Diaspora
  • ENGL 337 African-American Literature I (1)
  • ENGL 338 African-American Literature II (1)
  • ENGL 381 Latin @ Countercultures Digital Research Project (1)

Four additional courses (4)

  • Two additional electives at the 300 or 400 level (2)
  • Two additional electives (2)
  • (at least one course besides Senior project at 400 level)

Senior Experience (1)

  • ENGL 490 Independent Study (1) (with permission) or
  • ENGL 499W Senior Seminar in English or
  • HUM 497W Humanities Senior Seminar (1)

The advisor and the student will develop together a major program that ensures the study of a wide variety of literary texts and varied interpretive strategies.

Individual research is encouraged through Reading and Conference (ENGL 390) and, for students with excellent academic records in their English studies, Independent Study (ENGL 490). Senior evaluation for the English major will usually consist of a senior thesis developed from a Humanities Senior Seminar or in the senior seminar in English. Some advanced students may produce the senior thesis or a directed creative project in Independent Study (ENGL 490).

English majors are encouraged to take courses from the following related fields: theatre, music, religion, classical studies, philosophy, art history, history, and interdisciplinary arts courses.

To be eligible for honors in the department, a student must complete at least two 400-level courses besides the Senior Seminar and have a GPA of 3.8 in the department.

Requirements for the Creative Writing Concentration for the English Major (10 Credits)

Core courses (3)

Two courses in literature written before 1800, only one of which can be Shakespeare course (2)

Two courses in literature written after 1800, with at least one in American Ethnic or Postcolonial literature (2)

Two additional creative writing courses (2)

  • ENGL 135 Introduction to Creative Writing (1)
  • ENGL 329W Creative nonfiction (1)
  • ENGL 331 Intermediate Fiction Writing (1)
  • ENGL 332 Intermediate Poetry Writing (1)
  • ENGL 339 Special Topics in Creative Writing (1)

Senior Experience (1)

Requirements for the English Minor (5 Credits)

The minor program in English consists of five credits-two required courses and the options listed below-selected in consultation with an English Department advisor from the following:

  • ENGL 201 Close Reading (1)
  • ENGL 202W Introduction to Literary Theory (1)
  • Two credits chosen in consultation with your English Department advisor from English courses numbered above 300 (2)
  • One other English credits (1)

Indicators of Achievement

Student Learning Outcomes for the English Major

  1. Engaged imagination and engagement in the imaginative process
    • Asks an inventive question and offers an original claim
    • Extends and complements current critical conversation in genuine and creative ways
    • Offers insights that provoke real interest and curiosity in the reader
  2. Careful reading of texts
    • Demonstrates close reading—attends to the details of the text, to its particular uses of language, to form and structure, manipulation of tone
    • Attends to complexities in the text—recognizes ambiguity, contradiction, ruptures, fissures
    • Attends to nuances and complexities in the text—recognizes cogency, coherence, and consistency, as well as ambiguity, contradiction, and inconsistency
    • Conscientiously avoids inappropriate manipulation of the text (e.g., gross misinterpretation or over-reading)
  3. Ability to engage with varied critical perspectives
    • Articulates a theory that authorizes the arguments the paper makes to support its claim
    • Recognizes and responds to scholarly critical conversation about the text
    • Contextualizes references to specific critics, theorists, and scholars (e.g., identifying their critical approach and larger argument about the text in question)
    • Enters scholarly, critical conversation (rather than simply quoting to back up writer‟s own point)
  4. Critical acumen
    • Identifies significant and relevant evidence in the text to advance the paper‟s claims and arguments
    • Anticipates and responds to likely challenges and alternative argumentative approaches
    • Uses text and theoretical material shrewdly and with deliberation
    • Displays sound logic and good judgment in argument‟s execution
  5. Reasoned argument
    • Offers appropriate textual evidence in support of claims; Explains use and validity of evidence
    • Develops and extends arguments, rather than simply amassing evidence to make a single point
    • Organizes sequence of and relationship between arguments effectively
    • Arrives at a plausible, non-obvious, non-trivial conclusion
  6. Clear prose
    • Establishes an appropriate scholarly voice, tone, and authority
    • Paragraphs effectively and provides transitions between and within paragraphs
    • Varies sentence structure and length appropriately
    • Observes conventions of standard American edited prose in grammar, punctuation, usage, mechanics

Faculty

Part-Time and Visiting Faculty


Course Listings

ENGL 116W (IT) Topics in American Literature (1)

A study of topics in American Literature ranging over the history of American letters. Topics may be organized around a major author, an idea, a genre, a major work, a literary movement, or a critical approach. Topics, texts and emphases will vary according to the instructor. Intended primarily for non-majors.

  • General Education Requirement Fulfillment: Writing-centered; Interpreting Texts
  • Offering: Every semester
  • Instructor: Staff

ENGL 117W (IT) Topics in British Literature (1)

A study of topics in significant texts from British literature. Topics may be organized around a major author, an idea, a genre, a major work, a literary movement or a critical approach. Topics, texts and emphases will vary according to the instructor. Intended primarily for non-majors.

  • General Education Requirement Fulfillment: Writing-centered; Interpreting Texts
  • Offering: Every semester
  • Instructor: Staff

ENGL 118W (IT) Topics in World Literature (1)

In this course students examine the principle literary genres and authors in world literature from various time periods (for example, Medieval, Renaissance, 17th, 18th, 19th and 20th centuries). We analyze these texts, on the one hand to understand their genre and stylistic attributes and literary value, and on the other hand to reach an understanding of cultural and historical values. While the focus is literary, discussions will include cultural material of relevance to the literature: influence of one national literature on another, cultural interaction in matters of the formal beauties of literature, cross-national influences of literary theories and the dynamic processes of literary aesthetics-literary ideologies and movements. Intended primarily for non-majors.

  • General Education Requirement Fulfillment: Writing-centered; Interpreting Texts
  • Offering: Every semester
  • Instructor: Staff

ENGL 119 (IT) The Forms of Literature: The Art of Reading Poetry, Drama, Fiction (1)

An introduction to the art of reading imaginative literature: poetry, drama and prose fiction. Emphasis on understanding and enjoyment of literature as a rich part of our cultural heritage. Intended primarily for non-majors.

  • General Education Requirement Fulfillment: Interpreting Texts
  • Offering: Alternate years
  • Instructor: Staff

ENGL 135 (CA) Introduction to Creative Writing (1)

This course introduces students to the practice of writing as an artistic medium. Combines analysis, study of form, and hands-on experience. May be single genre, or multiple genres, covering poetry, fiction, creative nonfiction, or dramatic writing.

  • General Education Requirement Fulfillment: Creating in the Arts
  • Offering: Fall/Spring
  • Instructor: Staff

ENGL 137W Writing for Academic Audiences (1)

Teaches strategies that are vital in writing for scholarly audiences, primarily in situations that require you to present well-reasoned arguments, supported with evidence. The course will provide instruction and sustained practice for students interested in familiarizing themselves with the conventions of academic inquiry and effective college-level writing, laying a strong foundation for future scholarly writing projects. Through systematic feedback from the instructor and peers, the course will emphasize techniques for generating, revision, and editing texts, as well as the effective use of readings and other source materials in writing.

  • Prerequisite:  First- or second-year standing and permission of instructor
  • General Education Requirement Fulfillment: Writing-centered
  • Offering: Annually
  • Instructor: Newmann Holmes

ENGL 201 Close Reading (1)

This course is intended to serve as the first course in the department for English majors and minors, providing training in the disciplinary conventions of close reading and academic writing. Focus on attention to form and structure. Definitions of genre and examples of a variety of genres (poetry, fiction, drama, possibly film), with particular emphasis on poetry.

  • Offering: Every semester
  • Instructor: Staff

ENGL 202W (IT) Introduction to Literary Theory (1)

Continued study of literary conventions and practice, including periodization and theory as modes of approaching literary study. Examples of historical periods and movements, canonical and non-canonical works, conceptual and applied study of various literary theories.

  • General Education Requirement Fulfillment: Writing-centered; Interpreting Texts
  • Prerequisite: ENGL 201
  • Offering: Every semester
  • Instructor: Staff

ENGL 203W Fundamentals of Creative Writing (1)

A focused study of the major issues in the craft and practice of creative writing, covering both poetry and pose narrative. Combines close analysis with creative experimentation and investigates genre and form through process. This course serves as the foundation course for English majors concentrating in creative writing.

  • General Education Requirement Fulfillment: Writing-centered
  • Prerequisite: ENGL 201, may be taken concurrently
  • Offering: Annual
  • Instructor: Strelow

ENGL 254W Regional Literature (1)

This course will examine the connections between literature in English and the specific culture of a region in the Americas (possibilities include the Northwest, Borderlands, Southern States and Caribbean) as reflected in a variety of works of prose, poetry, and drama.

  • General Education Requirement Fulfillment: Writing-centered
  • Offering: Alternate years
  • Instructor: Strelow

ENGL 311 The Avant Garde as a Critical Tradition (1)

A study of the development of critical alternatives to the traditional narrative cinema. The course will consider experimental films beginning in the 1920's and stretching to the present, focusing on ways in which the avant garde cinema has set about to reveal and question mainstream practice. The course will include early experimenters like Dziga Vertov, the American independent cinema, the French New Wave, and the work of directors such as Bunuel, Kurosawa, Fellini, Bergman and others.


ENGL 319 (IT) Special Topics in Literary Study (1)

In-depth study of a significant topic in literary study. Topics, tests, and emphases will vary with semester and instructor, but might include a study of a particular literary genre, movement, author, or approach. Past topics have included Sentimentalism, Adaptation, Postcolonialism, Dramatic Monologue. The course will consider the representational possibilities and limitations of literary works, as well as how literary works may embody and convey cultural values.

  • General Education Requirement Fulfillment: Interpreting Texts
  • Prerequisite: A 100- or 200-level English course in literature
  • Offering: Annually
  • Instructor: Staff

ENGL 326 Literature of Diaspora (1)

Students in this course will examine literature from various geographic locations comprising a particular culture's (South Asian or Latin) dispersal of people, language, and culture-and study how various contexts influence and shape cultural production and representations of identity. Within these myriad sites, we will investigate the double consciousness necessary to maintain a sense of 'self' outside one's place of cultural origin, and the impact of colonization on definitions of 'home.' Our primary focus will be textual analysis, including questions of genre, language, narration and perspective. We will also study the sociopolitical and cultural conflicts and causes for emigration that provide the fiction's contexts (in the case of South Asian diaspora: caste and religious divisions; India's partition; civil war in Sri Lanka; tensions within England, North America, and the Caribbean), and discuss how national divisions play out in the microcosm of each text. Discussions and readings of primary literature will be aided by (post) colonial discourse and contemporary multimedia.

  • Offering: Alternating years
  • Instructor: Makau, Perez

ENGL 329W Creative Non-fiction (1)

Through a combination of reading and writing, students will explore the treatment of various kinds of subject matter in various modes of creative nonfiction; investigate the use in creative nonfiction of techniques from various genres, including poetry and narrative fiction; and develop their ability to construct a range of written voices, from colloquial to formal, while also achieving an individual voice in their writing.

  • General Education Requirement Fulfillment: Writing-centered
  • Prerequisite: A 200-level writing or writing-centered course or consent of instructor
  • Offering: Annual
  • Instructor: Nadelson

ENGL 331 (CA) Intermediate Fiction Writing I (1)

Second-level course in fiction writing. Practice and analysis of short- or long-form fiction. Combines writing workshop with discussion of narrative craft. Students will produce a significant portfolio of fiction, through drafting and revision, as well as complete critical analysis of published work.

  • General Education Requirement Fulfillment: Creating in the Arts
  • Prerequisite: ENGL 135 or consent of instructor
  • Offering: Fall
  • Instructor: Chasar, Nadelson

ENGL 332 (CA) Intermediate Poetry Writing (1)

Second-level course in poetry writing. Practice and analysis of traditional or contemporary poetics and poetic form. Combines writing workshop with discussion of poetics and assigned readings. Students will produce a significant portfolio of poetry, through drafting and revision, as well as complete critical analyses of published or personal work.

  • General Education Requirement Fulfillment: Creating in the Arts
  • Prerequisite: ENGL 135 or consent of instructor
  • Offering: Spring
  • Instructor: Chasar, Nadelson, visiting writers

ENGL 336 (EV) Visible Evidence: The History and Theory of Documentary Film (1)

This course examines the tradition of the documentary film, considering its historical development, changing presentational strategies and the ways in which it inevitably intertwines evidence and argument.

  • General Education Requirement Fulfillment: Examining Values
  • Offering: Fall
  • Instructor: Nolley

ENGL 337 African American Literature I: Slave Narrative & Early African American Literary Tradition (1)

This course is a study of origins of African American literary and vernacular tradition. Formal and Thematic analysis of this tradition in 18th century and Antebellum America (with some examination of Britain). A goal is to understand the influence of this tradition on form and focus on contemporary African American Writers.

  • Prerequisite: Previous 100- or 200- level English course.
  • Offering: Alternate years
  • Instructor: Makau

ENGL 338 African-American Literature II: Modern African-American Literature (1)

A study of modern/contemporary literature written by African-Americans. Formal and thematic analysis of the novel with secondary examples from folktale, lyric and drama.

  • Prerequisite: A 100- or 200-level English course in literature
  • Offering: Alternate years
  • Instructor: Makau

ENGL 339 Special Topics in Creative Writing (1)

Practice and analysis of fiction, poetry, or dramatic writing, depending on the interests of the instructor. Taught by visiting writers or prominent writers in the community, this course will focus on a single genre or a particular issue of the writing craft that crosses genres. Topics may include playwriting, the novella, the novel, the prose poem, the poetic sequence, college, multiple voices, non-linear narrative strategies, hybrid forms.

  • Prerequisite: ENGL 135ENGL 203W or consent of instructor
  • Offering: Alternate years
  • Instructor: Guest artists

ENGL 341 Shakespeare (1)

A study of plays by Shakespeare, representing development through his dramatic career as well as across genres of comedy, tragedy, and history.  Attention to questions of form, genre, sources, and theatrical practice; to the role of the theatre in early modern English culture and politics; to recurring cultural, historical, and political issues the plays engage; to the history of Shakespeare as a cultural artifact.

  • Prerequisite: A 100- or 200-level English course in literature
  • Offering: Spring
  • Instructor: Hobgood, Moon

ENGL 344 Major Author (1)

Study of the works of a major author (such as Milton, Faulkner, Joyce). Consideration of significant influences, development of literary style and vision through consideration of the author's primary texts; critical appraisal of influence on later authors; survey of major criticism to the present. May be repeated for credit with focus on a different author.

  • Prerequisite: A 100- or 200-level English course in literature
  • Offering: Fall
  • Instructor: Staff

ENGL 345 Chaucer (1)

A study of Chaucer in Middle English, including the entire Canterbury Tales and a selection from the short poems and dream visions. Extensive secondary reading establishes Chaucer's context in the 14th century; examines the Classical, French, Italian, and English literary influences on his work; and proposes various theoretical approaches to interpretation in the 21st century.

  • Prerequisite: 100- or 200-level English course in literature
  • Offering: Alternate odd years in fall
  • Instructor: Hobgood, Moon

ENGL 347 Medieval Literature (1)

This course is a study of British literature from roughly A.D. 800-1500, the early and middle English periods. The survey will cover a range of authors and their works, including the Beowulf and Gawain poets, Chaucer, Marie de France, Julian of Norwich, Margery Kempe, and William Langland. Among other topics, we will examine form and genre; the recurring cultural, historical, and political issues the literature engages; how medieval literature anticipates and shapes modern and early modern literatures.

  • Prerequisite: 100- or 200-level literature course.
  • Offering: Alternate years
  • Instructor: Hobgood, Moon

ENGL 348 Early Modern English Poetry (1)

This course introduces students to English poetry written in the 16th and 17th centuries. Exploration of this literary period and genre will attend to topics like the development of the sonnet cycle in English; the growth of English courtier culture and the rise of poetry as a profession; the role of women poets in responding to and complicating a traditionally male-dominated poetic canon; poetry as expression of religious devotion and in ecclesiastical politics; the employment of poetry to negotiate private, erotic desire and public, political authority.

  • Prerequisite: 100- or 200-level literature course.
  • Offering: Alternate falls
  • Instructor: Hobgood, Moon

ENGL 353 The Early Novel (1)

Study of the development of the novel in Britain, from Restoration-era spiritual autobiography, fable, and romance to Jane Austen's psychological realism. Attention to questions of form, genre, and canon-formation, as well as the novel's intervention in debates about courtship, domesticity, and female authorship, middle-class individualism and national community, reason and feeling, empiricism and enchantment, and the social value of reading.

  • Prerequisite: A 100- or 200-level English course in literature
  • Offering: Alternate years
  • Instructor: Staff

ENGL 354 The Modern Novel (1)

A study of the continuing development of the novel in English from the nineteenth century to the present. Attention to formal characteristics of the genre, including narrative structure and characterization, and to literary movements such as sentimentalism, realism, naturalism, modernism, and postmodernism. Consideration of the novel as an expression or cultural, political, and economic contexts.

  • Prerequisite: A 100- or 200-level course in literature
  • Offering: Alternate years
  • Instructor: Michel, Nolley, Strelow

ENGL 355W Feminist Film Criticism (1)

Writing-centered study of approaches to literature from a variety of feminist perspectives. Consideration of the impact of feminist thought on literary study, and analysis of feminist innovations, revisions, and critiques of critical methods and literary theories. Conventions of feminist critical discourse. Applications of feminist theories and criticisms to the study of motion pictures.

  • General Education Requirement Fulfillment: Writing-centered
  • Prerequisite: Previous course in ENGL, FILM, or WGS, or consent of instructor
  • Offering: Alternate years
  • Instructor: Michel

ENGL 359 Early Modern Drama (1)

A study of works by early modern playwrights, representing the diverse range and scope of drama, other than Shakespeare, written and performed in 16th and 17th century England. Attention to questions of form, genre, and the theatrical practice; to the role of the theatre in early modern English culture and politics; to recurring cultural, historical, and political issues the plays engage; to the unique relationships between playgoers and London's states.

  • Prerequisite: A 100- or 200-level English course in literature
  • Offering: Alternate years
  • Instructor: Hobgood, Moon

ENGL 361 Modern Poetry & Poetics (1)

This course is a study of innovation and change in English-language poetry from 1800 to the present including but not limited to Romanticism, Modernism, and Post-modernism. Texts and emphases will vary depending on instructor.

  • Prerequisite: A 100 or 200 level Literature course.
  • Offering: Alternate years
  • Instructor: Chasar

ENGL 373 Contemporary Literature (1)

A study of contemporary works (works from the last two decades) which students and faculty will read together in order to evaluate and interpret new forms in light of a variety of critical theories.

  • Prerequisite: A 100- or 200-level English course in literature
  • Offering: Alternate years
  • Instructor: Strelow

ENGL 381 Latin@ Countercultures Digital Research Project (1)

This course examines instances of countercultural expression in post-War Latin@ literature, performance, and popular media. Counterculture in this context refers to a variable set of subject positions and aesthetic forms that include feminist and queer art and criticism, political movements, punk, the avant-garde, sexual cultures, the paraliterary (such as comic books, zines, and speculative fiction) and DIY (do-it-yourself) culture and publishing. Written and archival work for this course will contribute to a class blog housed at the Latin@ Countercultures Digital Research Project website (latincountercultures.com). Texts will include novels, plays, poems, graphic novels, scholarly monographs, art, film and performance footage. We will draw insights from the fields of queer studies, performance studies, and literary theory and history.


ENGL 390 and 391 Reading and Conference (.5 or 1)

To enable a student to acquire the necessary knowledge and experience of literary periods which are not covered by courses offered at Willamette University.

  • Prerequisite: Consent of instructor
  • Offering: On demand
  • Instructor: Staff

ENGL 394 Major Internship I (1)

See the internships section for more information.

  • Offering: On demand
  • Instructor: Staff

ENGL 438 Literature and Sexuality (1)

Study of literary representations of sexuality, gender, the body, desire. Analysis of normative literary constructions of sexuality and subversions of norms. Texts will vary, but will be drawn primarily from British and American literature.

  • Prerequisite: ENGL 201 and ENGL 202W or consent of instructor
  • Offering: Alternate years
  • Instructor: Michel

ENGL 441 Tradition and Influence in Literature (1)

The role of tradition, authorial influence and literary history in a broad range of works chosen from English, American and world literatures.

  • Prerequisite: ENGL 201 and ENGL 202W or consent of instructor
  • Offering: Alternate years
  • Instructor: Staff

ENGL 450 Advanced Studies in Authorship (1)

An intensive study of specific topics arising from close study of an author's works. Topics will vary, but may include historical development of the idea of authorship, theoretical debates about the nature of authorship, and opportunities for upper-level students to apply their skills in analytical thinking and critical writing to problems arising from an author's texts.

  • Prerequisite: ENGL 201 and ENGL 202W or consent of instructor
  • Offering: Alternate years
  • Instructor: Staff

ENGL 453 Advanced Studies in Literature 1300-1800 (1)

The advanced studies in literature courses are designed specifically for the English major who is contemplating graduate study in English or Comparative Literature. Both courses are in-depth studies of British and American canonical texts. Not open to freshmen.

  • Prerequisite: ENGL 201 and ENGL 202W or consent of instructor
  • Offering: Alternate years
  • Instructor: Staff

ENGL 454 Advanced Studies in Literature 1800-Present (1)

The advanced studies in literature courses are designed specifically for the English major who is contemplating graduate study in English or Comparative Literature. Both courses are in-depth studies of British and American canonical texts. Not open to freshmen.

  • Prerequisite: ENGL 201 and ENGL 202W or consent of instructor
  • Offering: Alternate years
  • Instructor: Staff

ENGL 456 Advanced Studies in Genre (1)

Examination of generic conventions through study of exemplary literary texts and critical works. Emphasis will vary. (Possibilities include Lyric, Epic, Novel, Autobiography) Not open to freshmen.

  • Prerequisite: ENGL 201 and ENGL 202W or consent of instructor
  • Offering: Alternate years
  • Instructor: Staff

ENGL 458 Advanced Studies in Literary Theory (1)

This course will offer students intensive readings in major theoretical texts from Formalism to the present. We will also examine the mutually influential relationships between recent literary theory and such disciplines as philosophy, anthropology, linguistics and psychoanalysis. Possible theories might include: Formalism, Structuralism, Deconstructionism, Reception Theory, New Historicism, Psychoanalytical Theory, Post-Colonialist Theory. Not open to first year students.

  • Prerequisite: ENGL 201 and ENGL 202W or consent of instructor
  • Offering: Alternate years
  • Instructor: Staff

ENGL 490 Independent Study (1)

Intensive study of a selected area.

  • Prerequisite: Permission of the department; 3.5 g.p.a. in major
  • Offering: On demand
  • Instructor: Staff

ENGL 498W Senior Seminar in Creative Writing (1)

A capstone course for students concentrating in creative writing in the English major. Students will participate in an intensive semester-long workshop and produce a significant body of creative work, in poetry or prose. In consultation with faculty, students will generate individual reading lists and develop a critical study of craft or process. Seminar participants will write and revise, ready and critique the writing of others, and present their finished work in a public forum. Student who elect this senior experience must submit a proposal to the English faculty a semester in advance.

  • General Education Requirement Fulfillment: Writing-centered
  • Prerequisite: ENGL 203W, 300-level creative writing course, and consent of instructor
  • Offering: Annually
  • Instructor: Nadelson, Chasar

ENGL 499W Senior Seminar in English (1)

The Senior Seminar is a capstone experience for English majors who wish to undertake intensive independent research and writing on a literary text or topic of their own choosing, with the approval of the English faculty. The Seminar will provide instruction in framing a research question, developing a theoretical approach, conducting library research, evaluating criticism, and structuring a substantial essay. Seminar participants will write and revise their papers in stages, read and critique the papers of others, and present their papers aloud. Students who elect this senior experience must submit a proposal to the English faculty a semester ahead.

  • General Education Requirement Fulfillment: Writing centered
  • Prerequisite: ENGL 201 and ENGL 202W or consent of instructor
  • Offering: Annually
  • Instructor: Staff

Jump to a Discipline

Jump to a Discipline's
Learning Outcomes

Jump to a Specific Course