English | Seminar: Literature and Interdisciplinary Studies
L370 | 22073 | Tarez Graban
ENG L470: SEMINAR: LITERATURE AND INTERDISCIPLINARY STUDIES
22073 - 1:00p-2:15p TR (20 students) 3 cr.
TOPIC: "Women in the Archives / Vandals in the Stacks"
This seminar offers undergraduates a unique practicum in archival
research using the resources of the Indiana University Archives as a
site for intellectual study. “Women in the Archives” has three main
goals: to foster the habits of mind that are essential for creating
and using archives; to mark critical intersections between feminist
theories and theories of “archive”; and to equip you to think about
archiving as literary investigation, cultural interpretation, and
This semester, you will have an unprecedented opportunity to explore
and process the donations of former faculty member Cecilia Hennel
Hendricks (1883-1969), whose life and work created unusual
intersections between women in the academy, women on the frontier,
writing instruction in higher education, and creative literary
expression. As you process these donations, you will also help shape
some important moments in feminist, literary, and American
histories. The experience you gain will be the jumping-off point for
your own research project that integrates the “how to” with the “how
Class days will alternate between discussion, workshop, and research
in the IU Archives (Wells Library, fourth floor). Class readings
will help to place the Hendricks collection in its broader
historical and literary contexts while preparing us to consider the
• How do we represent “gender” in the archives?
• How do those representations get remembered over time?
• What role do archives play in maintaining a society’s sense
of past, present, or future identity?
• When do objects “tell the truth”?
• What are the contradictions between preservation and access?
• Which speaks more loudly—representations of “as it was”
or “as it could be”?
• When is archiving like mediation, disruption, vandalism, or
Our readings will include a coursepack of articles and two novels
from the following list: The Archivist: A Novel (1998, Martha
Cooley); Possession (1990, A.S. Byatt); The Hoosier Schoolmaster
(1871, Edward Eggleston); The Thread that Runs So True (1949, Jesse
Stuart). We will also be viewing some published collections online.
Assignments will include an individual research journal, two
collaborative problem-solving exercises, regular posts to the class
weblog, and a seminar-length paper with a poster presentation to
showcase your work.
This class is available for Hutton Honors credit by special
arrangement with the instructor.