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Spring 2017 Undergraduate English Courses: Special Topics

358:254 Introduction to Science Fiction

01  MTH3  CAC   14470  KURNICK  SC-101

This course is an introduction to the history of science fiction, from its emergence as a recognizable genre in the late nineteenth-century to the present day.  While there are plenty of recognized sci-fi “classics” (some of which we’ll read), the genre also challenges our conceptions of literary value, and we’ll be considering such issues as well as we read samples from the “pulp” magazines that were such fertile ground for the form throughout much of the twentieth century, as we think about how the genre has been taken up by mainstream writers, and as we investigate sci-fi’s central importance to radio, TV, and film. We’ll pay attention to how the speculative impulse in sci-fi allows narrative experiments in conceptualizations of race, gender, sexuality, class, the family, and humans’ relations to animals, technology, and the natural world.