Brief Description of Course: This advanced research seminar examines the complex relation between three key terms for literary study: canon, biography, and form. Most generally, we will explore large and fundamental questions: what is the relation between historical identity and canonical identity, authorial intention and authorial style, genius and convention, life and art? More particularly we will survey, critique, and deploy different methods of canon-construction, biographical criticism, and close reading in order to interpret literary texts and write literary criticism with rigor, imagination, and a highly developed personal style.
Students will spend most of the year writing a research paper on a topic of their own choosing. Coursework in the first term will model some approaches to literary research and criticism by focusing on the drama of the English renaissance. Coursework in the second term will include critical and theoretical readings, intensive writing workshops and peer review, and student presentations of original research.
Required Reading: TBA.
First Three Authors/Texts: TBA.
Method of Evaluation: TBA.
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