Department of English

University of Toronto

Critical Topographies

Critical Topographies: Theory and Practice of Contemporary Literary Studies in English 
P. Downes  & N. Morgenstern

*PLEASE NOTE: As of September 2011, this is now a Required Course for all M.A. J.D./M.A. and Ph.D.U. Students. This course is restricted to English students.

Course Description:

The aim of Critical Topographies: Theory and Practice of Contemporary Literary Studies in English is to provide M.A. students about to embark on professional studies in the discipline of “English” with a comprehensive overview or set of maps with which to understand the discipline and locate themselves in the current state of the field. Contemporary literary studies in English can sometimes appear bewildering in terms of both the issues analyzed and methods applied – so much so that there is now no one unifying paradigm, objective, or methodology. The course aims to address this phenomenon; it aims not only to chart current critical topographies but also to suggest how they came into being and what opportunities they and new modes of critical practice offer for significant future research.

Course Requirements and Method of Evaluation:
Critical Topographies will be team-taught in a single section by two faculty members (although one hour of the three hours per week will involve break-out sessions involving smaller groups). The course is designed to foster cohesion and community among members of the M.A. class.

Participation (attendance; evidence of active engagement with seminar discussion; weekly question submission 15%); oral presentation 15%; meeting with seminar leaders 10%; short essay 20%; final paper 40%.

Term: F-Term (September 2015 - December 2015)
Date/Time: Friday, 10:00am - 1:00pm, 3 hours
10:00am-12:00noon - Lecture: Room JHB 100 (Jackman Humanities Building, 170 St. George Street) 
12:00noon-1:00pm - Breakout Session Rooms: Room JHB100a and JHB100b (Jackman Humanities Building, 170 St. George Street)

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