Department of English

University of Toronto

5000 Series Course Descriptions

ENG5021HF
Black Forms: Critical Race Theory and Diasporic Literature 
A. Thomas 

Course Description:
What can critical race theory tell us about literary form? How might practices of formal analysis contribute to an understanding of the study of difference? This course proposes an exploration of the relation between literary form and critical race theory. Using critical comparative approaches from a range of humanistic and theoretical fields, we will pay particular attention to experimentation and genre and consider, on the one hand, global discourses of race (particularly Blackness), and, on the other, 20th- and 21st-century Black and diasporic literature and theory whose experiments with form trouble, challenge, or construct notions of identity, group, relation, and race.

Course Reading List:
Readings may include: Charles Chesnutt, Conjure Stories; Jean Toomer, Cane; Claude McKay, Home to Harlem; Audre Lorde, Zami; Dionne Brand, Map to the Door of No Return; Zadie Smith, NW; Fred Moten, In the Break; Saidiya Hartman, Wayward Lives, Beautiful Experiments; Achille Mbembe, Critique of Black Reason; Sylvia Wynter and Katherine McKittrick, On Being Human As Praxis; Colson Whitehead, Zone One; Toni Morrison, Paradise; Tiffany King, Black Shoals; Christina Sharpe, In The Wake; Denise Ferreira da Silva, Toward A Global Idea of Race.

Course Method of Evaluation and Course Requirements:
Participation: 20% (throughout the semester)
Seminar Presentation/Class facilitation: 20% (sign up in second week)
Final paper (15 pages): 50%
Course reflection: 10%

Term: F-TERM (September 2021 to December 2021)
Date/Time: 4:00 pm to 6:00 pm, Wednesdays
Location:
ONLINE DELIVERY (SYNCHRONOUS), via teleconferencing.  Link to be sent to students directly by the instructor.

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ENG5025HF
Malcolm X and African-Canadian Literature
G. E. Clarke

Course Description:
In this seminar, we will explore the seminal influence upon African-Canadian letters of the African-American public intellectual Malcolm X, only 39 when assassinated in 1965. Although (European/Caucasian) Canadian media accorded X usually cursory and derogatory attention, and though he was marginalized by both U.S. Civil Rights Movement figures and by the Nation of Islam, his ideas for Black Nationalism, anti-imperialism, and Black cultural and political empowerment still made their way into the works of African-Canadian authors. We will explore the meaning of the various appropriations, by Black Canadian writers, of various "Malcolms."

Course Reading List:
The Autobiography of Malcolm X--Malcolm X The Iconography of Malcolm X--Graeme Abernethy The Hard Times and Life Crimes of Ricky Atkinson--Atkinson with Joe Fiorito In Another Place, Not Here--Dionne Brand Ghosts In Our Blood--Jan Carew Polishing His Coffin--Austin Clarke "Interview with Malcolm X"--Austin Clarke "Revolutionary": The Autobiography of Burnley "Rocky" Jones-- Jones with James Walker Being Black--Althea Prince Harlem Duet--Djanet Sears

Course Method of Evaluation and Course Requirements:
8 Response papers (1 due for each text): 40%
Research paper: 40%
Participation: 20%

Term: F-TERM (September 2021 to December 2021)
Date/Time: 2:00 pm to 4:00 pm, Tuesdays
Location: RM UC F204 (
University College, 1 Devonshire Pl, Toronto, ON M5S 3K7)
Delivery: IN-PERSON

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ENG5074HS
In the First Person: Memoirs and Mediality
S. Kamboureli

Course Description:
This course will engage with the construction and social function of autobiographical subjectivity in printed and graphic memoir forms that blend different discourses or combine two or more media. Framed by the premise that the memoir is a mediated mode of self-expression, the course will study the relationship between what Foucault calls the "technologies of the self" and the media technologies through which the memoir's self-referential subject expresses itself. We will approach this issue by putting memoirs in dialogue with a range of theoretical and critical material about life writing, subject formation, corporeality, and mediality. Our discussions will then focus on the performativity, positionality, and relationality of the writing subject; the tropes through which the body figures in self- narratives; the intertextual and inter/medial structure of memoirs; the ways in which discourses such as the self-reflexive essay, philosophy, autoethnography, and confession inflect self-expression; the agency gained in writing a memoir, especially in relation to collectivities; and the impact of digital technologies and social media on memoirs today. The range of (mostly Canadian) memoirs selected will afford us the opportunity to address these questions in relation to gender, sexuality, "race," and class.

Course Reading List:
Tentative Texts: Memoirs: Roland Barthes, Roland Barthes; Michel Leiris, Manhood; Alice Kaplan, French Lessons; Marjane Satrapi, Persepolis; David Chariandy, I've Been Meaning to Tell You: A Letter to my Daughter ; Dionne Brand, A Map to the Door of No Return; Samra Habib, We have always been here: A Queer Muslim Memoir; Augie Merasty, The Education of Augie Merasty: A Residential School Memoir; Fred Wah, Diamond Grill; Roy Kiyooka, Mothertalk: Life Stories of Mary Kiyoshi Kiyooka; and Mini Aodla Freeman, Life among the Qallunaat.

Tentative Theoretical/Critical Material: Selections from Michel Foucault, Technologies of the Self; Aakash Singh Rathore, A Philosophy of Autobiography: Body & Text; Judith Butler, The psychic Life of Power; Sidonie Smith and Julia Watson, eds., Women, Autobiography, Theory: A Reader; Martina Wagner-Egelhaaf, ed., Handbook of Autobiography / Autofiction; Bart Moore-Gilbert, Postcolonial Life-Writing: Culture, Politics, and Self-Representation; Nassim Winnie Balestrini et. al., eds., Intermediality, Life Writing, and American Studies; Jorgen Bruhn, What Is Mediality, and (How) does it Matter? Theoretical Terms and Methodology; Julie Avril Minich, Writing Queer Lives: Autobiography and Memoir; Michael A. Chaney, Graphic Subjects: Critical Essays on Autobiography and Graphic Novels; Bunty Avieson, et. al., eds., Mediating Memory: Tracing the Limits of Memoir; Nassim Winnie Balestrini, et. al., eds., Intermediality, Life Writing, and American Studies. 

Course Method of Evaluation and Course Requirements:
Seminar Report 20%
Short Paper 20%
Informed Participation 20%
Research Paper 40%.

Term: S-TERM (January 2022 to April 2022)
Date/Time: 10:00 am to 1:00 pm, Wednesdays
Location:
RM JHB 616 (Room Change) (Jackman Humanities Building, University of Toronto, 170 St. George Street)
Delivery: IN-PERSON

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ENG5281HF
Whitman and Nationalism 1855-1891/2
N.Dolan 

Course Description:
As most scholars have noted, and as any new reader soon sees, Whitman's poetry and prose is everywhere exuberantly nationalistic. And yet at the same time, readers and scholars also agree that Whitman's writing is everywhere deeply marked by his experiences of perceived social exclusion as a homosexual, as a brother to the mentally ill, and as a member of the working class. His writing is thus sensitive and resistant to the pervasive tendency of human collectivities to organize themselves according to binary oppositions of "in-group" versus "out-group." How then, it is fair to ask, was it possible for Whitman at once to draw upon the always-incipiently-binary rhetoric of nationalism and to undermine structural social exclusion? Our course will explore this central tension as expressed in Whitman's poetry and prose across the full arc of his career, from 1855-1891/2. This exploration will include delving into both the theory and history of nationalism, especially the various currents of nationalistic discourse prominent in American public life in the 19th century. We will also be interested in comparative perspectives generated by consulting examples of "national" poetry from other countries.

Course Reading List: 
Leaves of Grass, 1891/2 "deathbed" edition & selected works of nationalist theory.  

Course Method of Evaluation and Course Requirements:
Term paper (60%); Brief presentation (20%); Class Participation (20%).

Term: F-TERM (September 2021 to December 2021)
Date/Time: 4:00 pm to 7:00 pm, Fridays
Location: RM OI 11200
(Ontario Institute for Studies in Education, 252 Bloor St W, Toronto, ON M5S 1V6)
Delivery: IN-PERSON ** First two weeks of classes in September 2021 taught online.

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ENG5527HF
Making and Re-Making Modernism
C. Battershill

Course Description:
Modernist literary culture was built on strong relationships between writing and other kinds of making. Writers and artists were publishing their own magazines, printing their own pamphlets, and staging their own experimental plays. Taking matters of literary circulation and publication literally into their own hands, modernist writers emphasized the importance of the handmade in an increasingly mechanized world. In this course, we will examine modernist little magazines, small presses, interdisciplinary artistic workshops, and theatrical productions in Britain and Ireland from 1900 to 1945 in order to understand the collaborative practices and aesthetic imperatives of modernist writers and interdisciplinary artists. Now that about a century has passed since these artistic collaborations took place, the objects that modernists made are being re-made and re-distributed through library special collections and digitization initiatives. Everything from scraps of fabric from dance costumes to handprinted books are now being remediated and represented in online collections. Our reading of modernist texts in all genres will therefore be informed by a constellation of critical works on digital archives, taste, craft, class, and the avant-garde.

Course Reading List:
Readings will likely include: Virginia Woolf, "Monday or Tuesday," extracts from Essays & Diaries; Auden, Spender, et al "The Aim of Group Theatre"; Roger Fry "Vision and Design"; Claude McKay (selected poems); reviews & ephemera relating to the Ballet Russes; selections from Nancy Cunard & Henry Crowder; Laura Riding & Robert Graves' A Survey of Modernist Poetry; The Penguin New Writing

Course Method of Evaluation and Course Requirements:
Presentation & Book Review: 30% Essay Abstract: 10% Essay: 40% Participation & Peer Feedback: 20%

Term: F-TERM (September 2021 to December 2021)
Date/Time: 10:00 am to 12:00 pm, Mondays
Location: RM OI 11200
(Ontario Institute for Studies in Education, 252 Bloor St W, Toronto, ON M5S 1V6)
Delivery: IN-PERSON  ** First two weeks of classes in September 2021 taught online.

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ENG5874HS (Cancelled - June 7, 2021)
Late James
D. Wright

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ENG5994HS
Modern South Asia in Literature and Media
R. Mehta

Course Description:
Throughout the twentieth century, territorial re- mappings, independence struggles, and ethnonationalist state violence have constituted modern South Asia as a radically shifting cultural construct that coincides and collides with lived experience and aspiration. This course tackles urgent questions of anti-colonialism, feminism, queerness, technology, spirituality, stardom, caste apartheid, ecology, and populism, through a close reading of literature and media spanning the mid- twentieth century to present times. It brings the insights of cultural critique to bear upon a range of materials, from Anglophone classics and fiction and film in translation to poetic cosmopolitanism and avant-garde re- imaginings.

Course Reading List:
Reading and viewing list-subject to change] Anjum Hasan, Lunatic in My Head Agha Shahid Ali, Call Me Ishmael Tonight, selections Bama, Just One Word, selections Amrita Pritam, The Revenue Stamp Anand Patwardhan, Waves of Revolution Bapsi Sidhwa, Ice Candy Man Dayanita Singh, Myself Mona Ahmed Mira Nair, Mississippi Masala Raja Rao, Kanthapura R.K. Narayan, The Guide Saadat Hasan Manto, Mottled Dawn, selections Michael Ondaatje, Anil's Ghost Satyajit Ray, Pather Panchali Salman Rushdie, Midnight's Children Shimit Amin, Chak De! Vivek Shanbhag, Ghachar Ghochar

Course Method of Evaluation and Course Requirements:
Ongoing Seminar Presentations, 20%; Informed Participation 20%;  Two Essay, Research Papers: 1) First paper due Feb 18, 20%, 2) Final paper due Apr 15, 40%.

Term: S-TERM (January 2022 to April 2022)
Date/Time: 12:00 pm to 2:00 pm, Thursdays
Location: RM BL 305 (Claude T. Bissell Building, 140 St. George Street, Toronto, ON, M5S 3G6)
Delivery: IN-PERSON

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Seminar Presentation/Class facilitation: 20% (sign up in second week)

Final Paper (15 pages): 50%

Course reflection: 10%

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