Department of English

University of Toronto

ENG150Y1Y L0101

ENG150Y1Y     L0101    LEC MW10; TUT F10 or F11
(Please note: on ROSI, students must sign up for a tutorial on Fridays at 10 or 11 AM)
The Literary Tradition
Instructor: Prof. M. Nyquist
Office Location: Jackman Humanities Building, Room 831

Brief Description of Course: Our course will explore connections among literary works from various traditions. We will begin with epic and dramatic literature produced in ancient Greece and Rome, yet will question the notion that this literature belongs to a distinctly “Western” tradition. After reading selections from foundational texts considered sacred – selections from the Hebrew Torah, the Christian Testament, the Qur’an, together with readings on Indigenous and Buddhist traditions – we will turn to medieval, early modern, enlightenment, and modern literature before concluding with pieces by two contemporary Canadians. To provide such a wide-ranging reading experience with coherence, we will focus on conceptions of “honour” as they appear in the texts selected. By the end of the course, you will have acquired a sense of the extraordinary richness of literary forms, the surprising diversity of literary traditions, and the excitement that comes with reading and talking about literature.

Required Reading: Homer, Iliad, trans. Lattimore (Chicago); Sophocles, Antigone (BB); Virgil, Aeneid, trans. Mandelbaum (Bantam); King James Bible (Oxford World’s Classics); Qur’an, trans. Haleem (Oxford World’s Classics); Dante, Inferno, trans. Musa (Penguin); Arabian Nights, trans Haddawy (Penguin); Cervantes, Don Quixote, trans. Grossman (Ecco); Shakespeare, The Tempest (Signet); Sor Juana Ines de la Cruz, Poems, Protest, and a Dream, trans. Peden (Penguin); Selected texts by Voltaire, Rousseau, and Von Kleist (BB); selected stories by Pauline Johnson (BB); Kafka, Metamorphosis and Other Stories, trans. Corngold (Bantam); Mouawad, Scorched, trans. Gaboriau (Playwrights Canada); Hage, Cockroach (Anansi).

Texts have been ordered at the Bob Miller Bookroom, 180 Bloor St. West (416-922-3557), except for those marked “BB,” which will be posted on Blackboard.

First Three Authors/Texts: Homer, Iliad; Sophocles, Antigone; Euripides, Hecuba.

Method of Evaluation: In-tutorial reflection pieces (35%); end-of-first-term take-home (15%); attendance and participation (15%); three-hour final examination (35%).

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