Spring 2013 - Undergraduate Course Descriptions

Gu, Ming
Discipline and Number
LIT 4348 Section 003
MW Time 1:00 PM - 2:15 PM
Course Title
Critical Approaches to Literatur

Description of Course:

This course is a rudimentary introduction to literary criticism and its methodologies. Its objective is to teach students how to go beyond an intuitive and commonsensical approach to literature and to lay an initial conceptual grounding for literary and cultural studies. It is a practical reading course guided by major ideas of literary studies and critical approaches. It consists of two components: 1) to learn basic ideas and approaches of major schools of literary theory; 2) to apply the acquired critical approaches to selected literary texts, which include a poem, two short stories, a Shakespearean play, and two novels. While paying sufficient attention to learning major ideas and approaches of literary studies, it lays emphasis on how to read the chosen literary texts from a variety of perspectives. By close reading the same literary texts using different critical approaches, students will have an opportunity to master major ideas and approaches of literary criticism and become sophisticated and thoughtful readers.

Required Texts:

1) Wilfred Guerin, et al., A Handbook of Critical Approaches to Literature, 6th edition, Oxford University Press, 2011.
2) William Shakespeare, Hamlet, Dover Publications, 1992.
3) Mark Twain, Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, Dover Publications, 1994
4) Mary Shelley, Frankenstein, Dover Publications; Third edition, 1994.

Course Requirements/Evaluation Criteria:

1) In-class presentations 10%
2) In-class quizzes 25%
3) A mid-term paper 25%
4) A final examination 25%
5) Attendance and Participation in discussion 15%
Total: 100%

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