Courses In English

CURRENT COURSE DESCRIPTIONS

This is an unofficial list of English courses that will be offered in SUMMER 2017. It is strictly for the use of expanded course descriptions. For the complete official course offerings, please consult the UIC SCHEDULE OF CLASSES.

ENGL 109: American Literature and American Culture
CRN: 21674
Times/Days: T 10:45-1:15 pm
Instructor: Corbin Hidday
“A map of the world that does not include Utopia is not worth even glancing at…” –Oscar Wilde
Literature of Utopia and Dystopia: In this course, we will explore literature of utopia and dystopia, using Thomas More’s originary text, Utopia (1516), as our foundation to explore fundamental contradictions of social reality. The Greek word, utopia, stages this contradiction, at once referring to an “ideal” society and no place at all. We will read literature of utopia and dystopia in order to grapple with this central contradiction, and also to consider other relevant questions: what does it mean to think Utopia today? Is it worth thinking about Utopia today? Our central texts will come from the Americas and cover a wide range of genres, within both literary and cinematic texts. Many of the worlds constructed by a utopian/dystopian literary imagination seem particularly suited for our own political, ethical and environmental moment of ethno-nationalism, the rise of populism, endless war and catastrophic climate change, producing a lived experience where the line between science fiction and reality is blurred. We will explore intersections between utopia/dystopia and race, gender, class, while considering the stability or instability of Nature, the human subject, and the role of desire. Potential authors include: Ernest Callenbach, George Orwell, Philip K. Dick, William Gibson, Margaret Atwood, Octavia Butler, Cormac McCarthy, Kim Stanley Robinson, and Colson Whitehead.

ENGL 305: Studies in Fiction
CRN: 18838
Times/Days: TR 10:45 - 1:15
Instructor: David Schaafsma
This course is labeled Studies in Fiction, but the focus this summer will be Young Adult Graphic Novels, with a further focus on texts about girls. This is a course I initially envisioned would be primarily of interest to people in my Program in English Education, but anyone interested in comics or Young Adult Literature is welcome. My idea is that there should be more high interest contemporary literature in schools in addition to the Established Literary Canon (which I also love). But I also know a lot of people like YA, a lot of people like comics, and in addition, we are also witnessing (or maybe you are not yet witnessing, so let me say I am) a kind of revolution in YAL and comics that features more and more work for girls and women, so we/you want to get on that bandwagon.