Department of English

University of Toronto


ENG273Y1Y L0101 MW2-5
Queer Writing
Instructor: Margeaux Feldman
Office Phone: TBD
Office Location: TBD

Brief Description of Course: This course has two main objectives. The first is to introduce students to what may be termed lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, two-spirited, and queer texts across different genres and time periods. The second is to offer an introduction to queer theoretical perspectives – both canonical and current (note: you do not need to have any previous experience with theory in order to succeed). In order to think about queer subjectivity, we will turn to classical, modern, postmodern, and contemporary literature, including poetry, novels, plays, memoirs, and graphic novels, as well as film, art, and popular culture. Following in the footsteps of many queer theorists, we will also think about “queerness” more capaciously, as a term for describing non-normative desires more broadly. Our focus for this course will centre on the ways in which queer subjects foster and maintain intimate relations with others – whether they are familial, romantic, or sexual – in a world that privileges heterosexual and heteronormative relationships. Thus, this course will take into consideration questions of ideology, fantasy, pleasure, trauma, politics, and nationality, and the role that these forces play in shaping queer identity and queer relationships.

Required Reading:  Literary: Sappho (Anne Carson Translation), If Not, Winter: Fragments of Sappho; Anne Carson, Autobiography of Red; Oscar Wilde, The Picture of Dorian Gray; Henry James, “The Beast in the Jungle”; Willa Cather, “Paul’s Case”; Virginia Woolf, Orlando; Djuna Barnes, Nightwood; Carson McCullers, The Member of the Wedding; Jeanette Winterson, Written on the Body; Tony Kushner, Angels in America; Dorothy Allison, Bastard Out of Carolina; Alison Bechel, Fun Home; Maggie Nelson, The Argonauts; Juliet Jacques, Trans: A Memoir

Theoretical: Freud, Three Essays on the Theory of Sexuality (selections); Michel Foucault, The History of Sexuality (selections); Judith Butler, Gender Trouble (selections); Eve Sedgwick, “Epistemology of the Closet”; Heather Love, Feeling Backwards (selections); Ann Cvetkovich, An Archive of Feelings (selections)

First Three Authors/Texts: Sappho, Carson, Freud

Method of Evaluation: Response papers (4 x 5% = 20%); two essays (45%); term test (15%); informed participation (20%)

Link to ARTSCI Calendar Course Description.

Link to ARTSCI Summer Timetable with Room Allocations.

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