L202 2083 KREILKAMP
Literary Interpretation

1:25p-2:15p MWF (25) 3 cr.

COAS INTENSIVE WRITING SECTION. OPEN TO MAJORS ONLY. DECLARED MINORS OBTAIN AUTHORIZATION FROM BH442.

We read works of literature in solitude, yet we come together to discuss and argue about them. We begin with personal visceral response - "I loved this book," "I hated this character" - which we then try to translate into communication and a shared discourse. This introduction to the methods of literary interpretation will proceed with the understanding that to become a skilled interpreter of literature involves entering a critical community and a communal conversation - a community and conversation of which our own classroom will aim to provide a model. We will engage in close textual analysis of works from a variety of genres, cultures, and time periods in order to sharpen and develop our critical reading skills. We'll develop a vocabulary with which we can precisely describe recurring approaches, methods, themes, and problems in literary form and history. With such a vocabulary in hand, we will be equipped to take account of the way the originality or uniqueness of any given work of literature derives from an author's variation on or departure from established norms and conventions. Assignments will include frequent response papers, three formal papers, and in-class work and quizzes.