Fall 2017 Undergraduate English Courses
358:358 Early Twentieth Century Fiction
01 MW5 CAC 15109 GOLDSTONE MU-113
This course is a study of novels and stories in English from 1890 to 1950, a period of extraordinary variety and expansion in fiction---and of upheaval in society at large: wars, depressions, migrations, mass social movements. Fiction does not simply respond to these upheavals; it participates in them, whether through political advocacy, artistic transformation, or even, at times, a willful refusal to engage. The course traces four transformations in fiction:
1. Elevating fiction in literary modernism: Henry James, James Joyce, Virginia Woolf, William Faulkner;
2. Specializing popular literature in detective fiction: Arthur Conan Doyle, Dorothy Sayers, Dashiell Hammett;
3. Globalizing literary English in India: Rabindranath Tagore, Mulk Raj Anand, R.K. Narayan;
4. Challenging racial convention in the U.S.: Jean Toomer, Zora Neale Hurston.
Students can expect a weekly average of 150 pp. of reading, often challenging, always worthwhile. A major aim of the course is to practice reading widely and well. Every class period will include lecture and both small- and large-group discussion. The major writing assignments consist of two papers and a take-home final.