Spring 2013 - Undergraduate Course Descriptions

Cotter, Sean
Discipline and Number
HUMA 3300 Section 501
MW Time 5:30 PM - 6:45 PM
Course Title
Reading and Writing Texts

Description of Course:

This course will introduce students to interdisciplinary study of the humanities through the example of the translator. Literary translation is more than the practice of transporting a work of literature into a new language. A translator writes and reads in an unusual way, because he exists in more than one culture at a time. This course will use this unusual perspective to examine three humanistic fields: aesthetic, literary, and historical studies. We will do more than study these fields: we will participate in them. We will write mock translations, read multiple translations of the same work, and study historical translators. We will gain practical and theoretical knowledge of the complicated negotiations of literary translation, negotiations that influence everyone's lives in a multicultural world. We will examine how meanings change with the change of languages, how cultures influence each other, and how language and culture gain emotional and political importance. As a result of our study, we will better understand not only the humanities but also the roles of culture and language in the world around us.

Required Texts:

We will read poetry, prose, essays, plays, and a graphic novel; we will handle primary texts and secondary, critical material from several disciplines. Most of our readings will be distributed on WebCT. Other readings will include:

Brian Friel, Translations
Peter Kuper, The Metamorphosis.
Eva Hoffman, Lost in Translation
Peter Thuesen, In Discordance with the Scriptures.

Course Requirements/Evaluation Criteria:

***You will not be asked to work in any language but English.***

You will be evaluated based on creative and critical written assignments, totaling 20 pages of writing and revision; and active engagement with the class.

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