Loyola University Chicago

Department of English

Fall 2023 Graduate Course Descriptions

Intro to Graduate Study (ENGL 400)

Section: 001 #4754
Instructor: S. Bost
3.0 credit hours Lecture
T 7-9:30 PM

This course provides an overview of ideas, conventions, terms, and practices associated with graduate study in English.  Rather than reproducing the status quo, however, we will interrogate each of the traditions we encounter and discuss a variety of possible future directions for the profession of English.  I am viewing this course as a collective project.  Rather than transmitting knowledge in one direction, we will work from the ground up with the texts we read.  Assignments will focus on disciplinary and methodological reflection, dialogue, speculation, and pedagogy.  Students will have the choice of writing a 10-page conference paper or creating an alternative format for presenting your work, like a curriculum, a digital project, or a creative approach to literary analysis.  The “final exam” for this course will be a collaborative effort at reimagining goals and power structures in the academy.  Readings will include Gregory Semenza's Graduate Study for the Twenty-First Century, the Norton Critical edition of Nella Larsen's Passing, the MLA Handbook, and a number of essays and other materials available on our course Sakai site.  

Topics in Critical Theory (ENGL 420)

Section: 001 #6607
Instructor: A. Sen
3.0 credit hours Lecture
W 7:00 - 9:30 PM LSC

Species, Space, Power, Home

Animal Studies and Environmental Studies are often discussed as separate and even contesting subfields. This course will bring together different theoretical strands to show how animals are necessarily bound up with questions of space and place, coexistence, and dwelling. In studying these relationships, we will emphasize material issues of power and infrastructure, as well as affective visions of belonging that enable and thwart co-living. Special emphasis will be placed on the idea of straying as a distinctly animalized concept that can effectively illuminate mechanisms of power at work in moving through territorial demarcations. We will also attend to the specific contexts of race and region as we navigate our course concepts.

Texts will span theory, art, and culture, and may include works by Mel Chen, Joshua Bennet, Benedicte Boisseron, Nayanika Mathur, Aimé Césaire, dg nanouk okpik, Elizabeth Lo (film), and Jerzy Skolimowski (film).


Topics in Early Modern Literature and Culture (ENGL 450)

Section: 001 #5937
Instructor: J. Knapp
3.0 credit hours Lecture
Th 7:00 – 9:30 PM LSC

Early Modern Poetics of Scale

The early modern period witnessed a rapidly expanding world. Trade, exploration, and colonization led to a remapping of geographic space in an attempt to account for a new knowledge of the earth’s global topography. The heavens similarly grew thanks to new technologies like the telescope and advances in theoretical mathematics. While astronomers used technical developments in lens production to look to the sky, natural philosophers took to the microscope to unveil a tiny universe previously hidden to the naked eye. Space seemingly expanded in every direction. Time too took on an expansive character, as cosmologists attempted to map expanding space onto the past and into the future. Numerologists sought to predict the Day of Judgment by calculating dates and prophecies found in scripture, and philosophers pondered the nature of eternity: time without time. The spatiotemporal expansion of the period inspired literary innovation and the project of world making in particular. In this seminar we will explore this connection by reading literary works by Spenser, Donne, Marvell, Milton, Pulter, Traherne, and Cavendish alongside works of natural philosophy, astronomy, and cartography.


Topics in Modernism (ENGL 480)

Section: 001 #5938
Instructor: M. Reddon
3.0 credit hours lecture
Tu/Th 4:15 – 5:35 PM LSC 

Indigenous Modernism

This course considers how Indigenous writers and artists have negotiated subjectivity within colonial modernity. Guided by critiques of modernity, we will consider how Indigenous modernist literature theorizes a set of historical concerns regarding truth, kinship and political economy. Read as a speculative literature, modernism traces the production of the subject through the discursive creation of the body. In this context, how have Indigenous authors written towards, against, within race? How does race constrain or enliven their writing? Our course will begin with an analysis of the intersection between state sovereignty and subjectivity and open onto texts that articulate the divergent forms of subjection Indigenous people undergo. In our class, the Indigenous authors we read will demonstrate how colonial logics of sovereign subjectivity may shape but never wholly determine the vitality of Indigenous life-worlds and their expression. Of particular interest to us will be texts that demonstrate the disparate modes of racialization and juridical legislation across transnational contexts. Course description subject to change.


Modern Poetry (ENGL 481)

Section: 001 #6708
Instructor: D. Chinitz
3.0 credit hours lecture
M 7:00 – 9:30 PM LSC

This course will investigate the process by which different ways of creating a modern poetry arose in dialogue with and, sometimes, in reaction against each other. We will investigate such competing and synergistic concepts as Decadence, Symbolism, and Imagism, and the conceptions of modernity, the cultural politics, and the poetic techniques associated with them. These rubrics hardly define a neat field, and we will see that conflicting impulses frequently coexist within the work of a single writer, and that one category of modernism often blurs into another. While considering modern poetry from this generally literary-historical perspective, the course will focus on such key figures as William Butler Yeats, T. S. Eliot, Marianne Moore, Langston Hughes, Ezra Pound, H.D. (Hilda Doolittle), William Carlos Williams, and Wallace Stevens.