NOTE: SOME EVENING FILM SHOWINGS REQUIRED.
In pursuing the theme of “Beauty and the Beast,” this course will investigate "what constitutes a classic?" and "what is popular culture?" and redefining the relationship between the two. The assigned readings will focus on the blurring of boundaries that usually render “beauty” and “beastliness” as inherently incompatible qualities. By looking at instances where beautiful people act in beastly ways or texts which glamorize evil, this course will analyze social assumptions about the significance of virtue and vice. We will read a variety of texts from antiquity until the present, and also analyze how film portrays the interrelationship between outward beauty and the beast within.
Requirements: two four-page papers, a midterm and a final essay exam, and a final project. Participation in class discussion is also a must.