Courses

Spring 2020

Advanced Creative Writing (Literary Translation)
Students will choose, early in the semester, one author to focus on in fiction, poetry, or drama. All work will be translated into English and discussed in a workshop format. We will address the challenges of revising, with the goal of arriving at a 25-30 page sample of the author's work. Weekly readings will focus on the comparison of pre-existing translations and also on some translation theory.
Instructors: Jhumpa Lahiri
Advanced Creative Writing (Literary Translation)
Students will choose, early in the semester, one author to focus on in fiction, poetry, or drama. All work will be translated into English and discussed in a workshop format. We will address the challenges of revising, with the goal of arriving at a 25-30 page sample of the author's work. Weekly readings will focus on the comparison of pre-existing translations and also on some translation theory.
Instructors: Jhumpa Lahiri
Afterlives of the Artists
We will examine the ways in which Giorgio Vasari's "Lives of the Artists" have morphed into modern and postmodern literature, focusing on the novelistic and lyric subversions of the original model. Adjustments to the standard narrative include biographies of wretched artists, artsy dealers, and aesthetically inclined criminals; texts set within the imagined world of a painting; tales privileging the instrument or materials over the artist; and dramatically rewritten or unwritten lives of the usual suspects. At stake here is less the figure of the artist than his or her disfiguration in the service of contemporary literature.
Instructors: Eileen Adair Reeves
Afterlives of the Artists
We will examine the ways in which Giorgio Vasari's "Lives of the Artists" have morphed into modern and postmodern literature, focusing on the novelistic and lyric subversions of the original model. Adjustments to the standard narrative include biographies of wretched artists, artsy dealers, and aesthetically inclined criminals; texts set within the imagined world of a painting; tales privileging the instrument or materials over the artist; and dramatically rewritten or unwritten lives of the usual suspects. At stake here is less the figure of the artist than his or her disfiguration in the service of contemporary literature.
Instructors: Eileen Adair Reeves
Beastly Tales
What does it mean to talk like an animal? Why and how do writers attempt such tricks? This course has as its focus a particular type of fiction, that of the speaking animal. We will examine the long-term development of this genre in novels, novellas, television and the occasional lyric, paying particular attention to the tension between the fantastic premise of the animal autobiography and a set of realistic concerns about the natural world. We will also take into account man's changing relationship with animals, a menagerie of privileged bookish beasts, and the repertory of stylistic strategies on which these writers draw.
Instructors: Eileen Adair Reeves
Beastly Tales
What does it mean to talk like an animal? Why and how do writers attempt such tricks? This course has as its focus a particular type of fiction, that of the speaking animal. We will examine the long-term development of this genre in novels, novellas, television and the occasional lyric, paying particular attention to the tension between the fantastic premise of the animal autobiography and a set of realistic concerns about the natural world. We will also take into account man's changing relationship with animals, a menagerie of privileged bookish beasts, and the repertory of stylistic strategies on which these writers draw.
Instructors: Eileen Adair Reeves
Creative Writing (Literary Translation)
Practice in the translation of literary works from another language into English supplemented by the reading and analysis of standard works. Criticism by professionals and talented peers encourages the student's growth as both creator and reader of literature. Students must be fluent in their chosen language.
Instructors: Jhumpa Lahiri
Creative Writing (Literary Translation)
Practice in the translation of literary works from another language into English supplemented by the reading and analysis of standard works. Criticism by professionals and talented peers encourages the student's growth as both creator and reader of literature. Students must be fluent in their chosen language.
Instructors: Jhumpa Lahiri
Culture and Revolution in the Modern Middle East
This seminar will explore the relationship between revolution and culture in the modern Middle East, with specific reference to the literature and history of Egypt, Palestine, Syria, and Iran. Readings will consist primarily of novels and memoirs written in the midst of revolution or revolutionary movements in the twentieth and early-twenty-first century in addition to secondary sources on history, social change, and the relationship between aesthetics and politics. All readings are in English, though students who wish to read work in Arabic or Persian may do so through consultation with the instructor.
Instructors: Max David Weiss
Culture and Revolution in the Modern Middle East
This seminar will explore the relationship between revolution and culture in the modern Middle East, with specific reference to the literature and history of Egypt, Palestine, Syria, and Iran. Readings will consist primarily of novels and memoirs written in the midst of revolution or revolutionary movements in the twentieth and early-twenty-first century in addition to secondary sources on history, social change, and the relationship between aesthetics and politics. All readings are in English, though students who wish to read work in Arabic or Persian may do so through consultation with the instructor.
Instructors: Max David Weiss

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