English | Introduction to Criticism
L371 | 2031 | Sterrenburg

11:15a-12:30p TR (30) 3 cr

Our course surveys a wide range of literary criticism.  We read the
critics critically, and we'll attempt understand what they are doing and
why. We'll also practice writing different kinds of criticism.  Our texts
will include at least two surveys of criticism, Andrew Bennet's
and Thomas McLaughlin's CRITICAL TERMS FOR LITERARY STUDY.  Our varieties
of criticism include the studies of language, structure, narrative,
discourse, race, gender, desire, pleasure, culture, popular culture,
ideology, and the canon.  We'll likewise consider relationships between
written texts and pictures.  This includes the critique of visual imagery.
W. T. J.
Mitchell's book ICONOLOGY: IMAGE, TEXT, IDEOLOGY will assist this inquiry.
We'll probably also look at Mitchell's recent work on dinosaur icons.
We'll ask how different kinds of criticism operate in relation to one
another.  The course reads some literary works in conjunction with these
different approaches.  Our texts come from British and American
literature,and generally they concern themselves with themes of
self-reliance.  Daniel Defoe's ROBINSON CRUSOE, poetry by Robert Frost,
and essays by Henry David Thoreau are possibilities.  Student work in the
course will consist of a mid-term and a final, a series of short paragraph
page-length working papers, and a set of four papers in the 4-5 page