Instructor: Osvaldo Pardo
This course, which is taught in English, will introduce students to Latin American modern literature by exploring a wide variety of works by twentieth-century and contemporary male and female writers who expanded, renewed and questioned the possibilities of narrative forms and genres in an effort to redefine inherited notions of “realism.” Some of the topics to be discussed include the modernization and internationalization of Latin American literature; the changing relation between authors and the market; the politics of translation of Latin American literature; the place of literature in a global age, among others. The authors to be read and discussed include Jorge Luis Borges, Felisberto Hernández, Silvina Ocampo, Clarice Lispector, Mario Bellatin, and Samanta Schweblin, among others.
The course will be conducted as a seminar, which means that active and regular participation in class discussions is essential and expected.
CA 1, CA 4-Int.
Instructor: Clare Eby
Prerequisite: ENGL 1010, 1011, or 2011; open to sophomores or higher
Concentrating on fiction that breaks new ground (particularly in terms of narrative form and structure), this class begins with two classics from shortly after the middle of the 20th century: Sylvia Plath’s vivid and disturbing The Bell Jar, an acid-sharp examination of the position of women in midcentury America; and Thomas Pynchon’s wacky, conspiratorial, postmodern quest narrative, The Crying of Lot 49. We then move on to Art Spiegelman’s holocaust narrative and autobiography Maus (the text that, more than any other, established the graphic novel as a serious art form). Next, we sample texts from the 21st century. We will read at least one book of stunningly interlocking short stories, such as Jennifer Egan’s A Visit from the Goon Squad, which experiments with narrative form to pose questions about how technology changes social interactions, and/or Jhumpa Lahiri’s Unaccustomed Earth, brilliant tales about immigrant families that attend closely to generational differences. We will probably read Gary Shteyngart’s satirical dystopia, Super Sad True Love Story, and definitely read the heartbreaking, multigenerational saga of exile, Junot Diaz’s The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao. There will be seven or so books total, plus some secondary readings. Because this is an honors course, requirements will be equivalent to what I assign in advanced studies (the 4000-level capstones for English majors): one short paper (5-6 pp.); one research paper (10-12 pp), which will be broken down into several preliminary stages, including an annotated bibliography; and a twenty-minute presentation on a scholarly text. The class will be discussion-based (with discussion a significant portion of the final grade); there will also be frequent quizzes.
Topic: Train Reading: Short Fiction Since 1945
Instructor: Kathy Knapp
Prerequisite: ENGL 1010, 1011, or 2011
This course will examine short fiction that originally appeared in The New Yorker and its role in reflecting, shaping, and educating the burgeoning middle class of the postwar years and resituating them in the contemporary era. By reading the stories of John Cheever, John Updike, Philip Roth, and J.D. Salinger among others, as well as that of contemporary writers such as Jhumpa Lahiri, Sherman Alexi, George Saunders, and Junot Diaz among others alongside cultural, historical, and literary criticism and essays, we will see how this fiction has helped readers of the Professional Managerial Class (PMC) form their identity as they came to “arrive” in the suburbs or transform the city by way of gentrification. Indeed, many of these stories wrestle with the ephemeral anxieties peculiar to their readers’ station in life: numbing conformity, debilitated manhood, marital woes, and perceived professional slights. Still others challenge readers to imaginatively engage in a rapidly changing and increasingly globalized world in ways both productive and problematic. These stories have alternately offered the middle class a glamorized version of themselves, exposed their weaknesses, preyed upon their fears, and both challenged and confirmed their assumptions concerning race, gender, class, and privilege. We will supplement our reading by sampling and discussing representations of the PMC in films, television, and advertising. This course should fulfill the objectives of a General Education course and an Honors course, which is to say it is designed to help you write and think more critically and deeply about the way that fiction interacts with our perceptions of ourselves and the larger world.
Instructor: Margaret Breen
Prerequisite: ENGL 1010, 1011, or 2011
In this course we will engage a range of American and British literary works—from the Renaissance to the present—and in the process encounter such great writers such William Shakespeare, Charlotte Brontë, and Alice Walker. We will be reading across genres: poems, plays, short stories, essays, and at least one novel. We will explore how form and social context shape writers’ development of a theme or exploration of an idea, and begin to consider how a particular critical approach can direct our textual analysis. Three 5-6-page essays, as well as several short response pieces.
CA 1, W.
An avid volleyball player, Tonya Tucker is a biological sciences major from Newtown, CT, where she graduated from Newtown High School. Tonya’s experiences in healthcare have shaped the vision she has for her future. Volunteering at a free medical clinic has exposed her to issues in caring for the underserved, which is something she’d like to incorporate into her career, while shadowing at UConn Health’s OB/GYN department has sparked her interest in women’s health. Perhaps her most enjoyable health-related experience has been volunteering at a nursing home where she does art therapy with the residents, as art is one of her interests.
Julie Taing is a graduate of New Britain High School, which offered her the opportunity to become a CNA her senior year. She did her clinicals at hospitals and nursing homes and says that this was an eye-opening experience for her. Before that she had volunteered for two years at the Hospital for Special Care in the Close Observation Unit. She currently works as a CNA in a nursing home, which she says has given her an appreciation of those who work in the health field. Julie is from New Britain, CT and is part of a Cambodian dance troupe that performs Khmer classical ballet and folk dances all over the state. At UConn she’s a chemistry major on the pre-med track.
A nursing major from Nigeria, Bright Eze has worked with a Nigerian health group to educate the rural population about how to manage diabetic symptoms and use a glucometer to keep track of their blood sugar level. He is also the leader of an organization that encourages high school males, who are skeptical that a man can be a nurse, to become one. Bright is an easy-going person who graduated from Wisdom Comprehensive Secondary School. He’s always available to help and loves playing basketball.
Born in Lima, Peru, Roselyn Terrazos-Moreno moved to Newington, CT when she was three years old. During her sophomore year at Newington High School, Roselyn shadowed at an eye clinic, which allowed her to learn about machines and tools of the trade as well as the doctor/patient relationship. Soon to be a physiology and neurobiology major at UConn, she has already volunteered at UConn Health and the Newington VA Hospital. In her spare time Roselyn enjoys photography and manipulating her pictures in Photoshop.
Marcus Patterson is from Waterbury, CT where he graduated as salutatorian of his class at W.F. Kaynor Technical High School. Marcus spent his junior year volunteering at nursing homes which ultimately led to his certification as a CNA. He’ll be majoring in allied health sciences at UConn.