Spring 2013 Undergraduate English Courses

350:367 Nineteenth Century Black Literature







This course focuses on black writers from the diaspora, a multifaceted community created by travels across the oceanic space of the Atlantic slave trade between Africa, the Americas, and Europe from the fifteenth century on.  We trace the development of a diasporic sensibility in African-American and Afro-Caribbean literature, the tropes of movement, exile, and regeneration black writers have used to construct a transnational, imagined, racial community, but also, hybrid and politicized notions of blackness.  This course asks, how have black writers chosen to tell a global story of the race?  We will also explore, how have women writers placed themselves within these histories and narratives?

Book List:

Olaudah Equiano, The Interesting Narrative of the Life of  Olaudah Equiano
Charles Johnson, Middle Passage
Martin Delaney, Blake, Or, The Huts of America
Pauline Hopkins, Of One Blood: Or, The Hidden Self
Michelle Cliff, Free Enterprise
Suzan Lori-Parks, Venus
Lawrence Hill, Someone Knows My Name


In addition to reading the assigned books and articles and participating in class discussions, you will be required to do: 1 written, in-class, presentation (2-3 pages) on a novel from the course, 2 papers, and a final exam.