Fall 2020 Undergraduate English Courses: Twentieth Century

359:362 Digital Literary Study

01   TF3  CAC   19948   GLISERMAN   FH-B1

This course will examine two or three novels using software to open the texts to a deeper scrutiny than the unaided mind can attain. We will be doing a small-scale data mining project. In particular we will be looking at the semantic webs--word families--that the text weaves. Students will choose the areas that they might wish to examine—for example, one might want to look at how the mind is represented, and thus one examine all the language associated with thinking and feeling; or one might be interested in the natural world, or the socially constructed world. Reading two or three novels at most, we will have an opportunity to read, reread, and read at another level of intensity to see that a text is not flat and linear, but dimensional and highly networked. We will also read scholarly essays on these texts to gain yet another perspective, and to see what critical readers see and fail to see. There will be a weekly blog, two papers (and the 2nd can be built on the first), and a variety of semantic mappings—no final exam.