English | Introduction to Writing & Study of Literature I: "MISFITS AND MONSTERS"
L141 | 2027 | Linda Charnes


Topic:  MISFITS AND MONSTERS

Everyone knows what it's like to want to "fit in" to the society that
we are a part of and all of us know what it is like to be, in one way
or another, a "misfit."  What are the ways in which our culture forces
us into conformity, and how are we also shaped, and misshapen, by
forces of exclusion?  Under what conditions does a garden variety
"misfit" become a "monster?"  And what happens when those who fit in
all too well find themselves exposed/constructed as misfits and
monsters?  In this course we will study these questions through close
literary, historical, and social analysis of a range of texts.
Readings will include Shakespeare's OTHELLO and TAMING OF THE SHREW;
Swift's GULLIVER'S TRAVELS; Mary Shelley's FRANKENSTEIN; Kafka's
METAMORPHOSIS and IN THE PENAL COLONY; and Art Speigelman's MAUS,
Parts One and Two.

Assignments:  Students will write five papers -- four 3-4 page papers
and one 6-10 page revision-expansion of an earlier essay.  There will
be a final exam.  The Associate Instructors may also choose to assign
regular quizzes.  Attendance in lecture and discussion meetings and
participation in discussions will count for a significant portion of
the course grade.