What is this course all about?
Welcome! This course will survey important works of twentieth-century English literature, considering the cultural and historical forces that shaped the writing of the period, and exploring in turn how the period's innovative literary techniques contributed to a rethinking of issues such as identity, colonialism, race, class, gender, the notion of "place," and the nature of consciousness. Because this is a survey course, it makes no pretense to thematic unity. Rather, some lectures will touch on the broad spectrum of literary, historical, and intellectual issues out of which this literature emerged; others will zoom in on the literary works under discussion for the week.
This course strives to further develop students' analytical writing skills, to sharpen critical thinking skills, and to extend students' ability to interpret increasingly sophisticated literary texts. Although focusing on 20th-century English literature in particular, the course is designed to improve your ability to appreciate, analyze, and write coherently and persuasively about texts in general, equipping you with interpretive skills that will assist you in your lifelong practice of reading.
1. To carefully read and critically analyze the social and historical values
modernist literature reflects.
2. To appreciate the complexity, absorb the richness and grasp the
relevance of literary works to life itself.
3. To write as well as express verbally with focus, command, and
grammatical correctness about themes, figurative language, societal
influences of modern literature.
4. To be able to the deepen one's awareness of language and its power
through reading and writing, speaking and listening.
5. Most importantly, learn a lot and enjoy the readings!
Discussion is the cornerstone of this course. Students are required to participate in spirited, analytical discussions where your opinions and conjectures are tested by the instructor and your classmates. All opinions in the classroom must be supported by textual evidence.