Comparative Literature | Narrative: The History and Theory of Narrative Forms
C313 | 27532 | Prof. Rosemarie McGerr


TR 1:00-2:15
*This course satisfies A&H requirements*

This course will introduce students to the variety of narrative
forms found in literatures from different times and cultures.   We
will examine some of the ways in which critics and theorists
interpret the aesthetic, psychological, and philosophical aspects of
narrative.  Among the issues we will explore are the social
functions of narrative texts, the relationship of gender and
narrative form, the role of inter-textuality in narrative tradition,
and the interplay of closed and open forms of narrative. In addition
to examples of myth, fairy tale, parable, and legend, we will study
more complex forms such as epic, romance, frame narrative, and
novel.  The readings for the course will include texts from ancient
times to the twentieth century.  We will begin with a selection of
myths, fairy tales, legends, and ancient and modern fables, and then
turn to longer narrative forms: The Odyssey, The Tale of Genji, The
Arabian Nights, Yvain, Inferno, The Decameron, Lazarillo de Tormes,
The Sorrows of Young Werther, Pride and Prejudice, To the
Lighthouse, Things Fall Apart, and In the Labyrinth.

Writing Requirements:
Students will write one comparative essay (5-7 pages), complete two
short projects on critical terms, and take a final exam.