English Literature

College of Arts & Sciences

Reading Modern Literature

CAS EN 125

Prereq: First Year Writing Seminar (e.g., WR 100 or WR 120). Introduces key concepts for understanding major developments in modern literature. Readings in poetry, drama, and fiction from varying traditions, designed to motivate an interest in some of the most engaging, and challenging, works of our time. Topics vary by instructor. Carries humanities divisional credit in CAS. This course fulfills a single unit in each of the following BU Hub areas: Aesthetic Exploration, Writing- intensive Course. 4 cr. Tuition: $2800

Summer 1 (May 21-June 27)

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Introduction to Drama

CAS EN 143

Introduction to the understanding, interpretation, and appreciation of a wide range of drama from different eras and diverse places, from the festivals of ancient Greece to the twenty-first century Broadway stage. We consider extraordinary plays from Renaissance England, nineteenth- century Europe, and twentieth-century Africa and the United States. Likely works include Antigone, Macbeth, A Doll's House, Death and The King's Horseman, Angels in America, Top Dog / Underdog and Hamilton. Focus on theater as a distinctive, developing artistic form, with explorations of political and aesthetic contexts. This course cannot be taken for credit in addition to the course with the same number that was previously titled "Literary Types: Drama." Carries humanities divisional credit in CAS. 4 cr. Tuition: $2800

Summer 2 (July 2-August 8)

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Seminar in Literature

CAS EN 220

Prereq: (CAS WR 100 or EN 120). Topic for Summer 2019: Friendship. Friendship is essential to many of our lives. But ideas about friendship have changed over time. To take one famous example, Tennyson's oft-quoted lines "'Tis better to have loved and lost/ Than never to have loved," were written about a close friend. What is the nature of such love? This course explores literary languages of friendship from Renaissance depictions of the "friend zone," to Victorian frenemies, to the often-fractured landscape of contemporary America. Authors may include Shakespeare, Austen, Oscar Wilde, August Wilson, Frank O'Hara, and Jim Jarmusch. Required of concentrators in English. Satisfies CAS WR 150 requirement. This course fulfills a single unit in each of the following BU Hub areas: Writing, Research and Inquiry, Research and Information Literacy. 4 cr. Tuition: $2800

Summer 1 (May 22-June 26)

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British Literature II

CAS EN 323

Prereq: (CAS EN 322). Overview of English literature between 1700 and 1900. Topics include London as urban center, modern prose fiction, Romantic and Victorian poetry, tensions between religion and science. Authors may include Pope, Swift, Wordsworth, Austen, Dickens, Tennyson, and Wilde. 4 cr. Tuition: $2800

Summer 2 (July 2-August 8)

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Shakespeare I

CAS EN 363

Six plays chosen from the following: Richard II, Henry IV (Part I), Troilus and Cressida, As You Like It, Hamlet, Othello, Antony and Cleopatra, and The Winter's Tale. 4 cr. Tuition: $2800

Summer 1 (May 21-June 27)

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Shakespeare II

CAS EN 364

Six or seven plays chosen from the following: Richard III, A Midsummer Night's Dream, Romeo and Juliet, The Merchant of Venice, Much Ado About Nothing, Measure for Measure, King Lear, Macbeth, Coriolanus, and The Tempest. 4 cr. Tuition: $2800

Summer 2 (July 2-August 8)

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Introduction to African American Women Writers

CAS EN 370

Topic for Summer 2019: Toni Morrison's American Times. Examines four of the Nobel Laureate's novels, using primary and secondary materials to construct historical contexts and critical perspectives. 4 cr. Tuition: $2800

Summer 1 (May 21-June 27)

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Detective Fiction

CAS EN 373

A survey of crime and detective fiction from the late 18th to the late 20th centuries, in the British and American traditions. Reading, discussion, exams, and written work focus on masters of the genre, including Poe, Doyle, Christie, Sayers, Hammett, Chandler, and Cain. 4 cr. Tuition: $2800

Summer 1 (May 22-June 26)

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American Literature I

CAS EN 533

A survey of American literature from its (contested) beginnings through the mid-nineteenth century. Focuses on fiction, poetry, and autobiography from major authors (including Melville, Hawthorne, Dickinson, Whitman, Douglass, and Thoreau). Also briefly encounters other genres such as sermons, essays, and exploration narratives. Among our lines of inquiry are these: How do political and philosophical questions shape literary forms and styles (and vice-versa)? How do authors write themselves into (and out of) literary traditions, particularly in matters of influence? And how do the roots (and routes) of early American literature continue on in twentieth- and twenty-first-century U.S. literature? 4 cr. Tuition: $2800

Summer 1 (May 21-June 27)

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English Drama from 1590 to 1642

CAS EN 552

The heritage of Marlowe and Shakespeare: the collapse of a historic world; Jacobean pessimism and decadence in the plays of Webster, Middleton, Ford, and others. 4 cr. Tuition: $2800

Summer 2 (July 1-August 7)

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Studies in Modern Fiction

CAS EN 582

Topic for Summer 2019: Skepticism, Faith, and Fiction After WWII. "Nihilism stands at the door," Nietzsche famously said in the 1880s, and he defined "nihilism" as the condition in which "the highest values devaluate themselves. The aim is lacking; 'why?' finds no answer." In the years after World War II--after global economic collapse, after the concentration camps and the Bomb, as religious traditions lost their grip ever more--Nietzsche's prophecy seemed to many people to have been realized. Yet in the face of this radically skeptical condition, many authors sought what Nietzsche called "the new arts of enduring it." They sought, that is, forms of art and storytelling that might confront and acknowledge the dislocations of modern history and yet also express some sort of faith--some affirmation in the face of anomie, a glimpse of new "highest values," a provisional answer to the question of "why?" This course will examine the remarkable variety of forms that such responses have taken, from experimental theater to southern Gothic fiction and lyrical late modernism to postmodern satire. Authors addressed may include Samuel Beckett, Peter Weiss, James Baldwin, Flannery O'Connor, Walker Percy, Marilynne Robinson, Cynthia Ozick, Don DeLillo, and J. M. Coetzee. 4 cr. Tuition: $2800

Summer 1 (May 22-June 26)

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