Graduate Literary Study
English 503, Spring 2000
Go directly to:
Office: (973) 353-5279x516; 516 Hill Hall.
Hours: Monday and Thursday, 2:30-3:30, and by appointment
(appointments are always good).
Home: (609) 882-4642 (before 11 p.m.!).
(the best way to reach me).
English 503 involves the following responsibilities on your part:
- Written Assignments: There will be two short papers,
each of around 2,000 words -- the first a standard seminar paper,
the second to be delivered orally at semester's end.
- In-Class Reports: You'll be expected to give several
brief presentations on various matters. Details are below.
- Class Participation: Regular and active class
participation (including doing the readings) is essential, and
counts for a large part of your grade. Class participation
obviously includes class attendance; if you're not there, you're
- E-Mail Participation: All students will be
required to have an E-mail account by the end of the
second week of classes; E-mail participation will count
toward the class participation grade, and much essential
information will be available only electronically. I'll
provide any computing help you need.
Two books -- Mary Shelley's Frankenstein (ed. Marilyn
Butler) and Literary Theory: An Anthology (ed. Julie
Rivkin and Michael Ryan; abbreviated LT) -- are available
at the Rutgers University Bookstore in Bradley Hall. Other
readings will be available in a photocopy packet, on-line, or on
reserve in Dana Library.
In addition to several in-class reports on research exercises,
each student will be responsible for beginning discussion of one
day's materials. That will typically take the form of a brief
(five-minute-ish) informal discussion of the theoretical readings
for the day and their use in interpreting literature. The day's
reporter will also be responsible for steering discussion
throughout the class meeting.
This class has a mailing list called
email@example.com; all students are required to have
an E-mail account by the send of the second week of classes and
to participate in the discussions on the list. Although I have
the greatest sympathy for those suffering from technological
nightmares, don't expect to use computer problems as an excuse
for not doing the reading or writing. If you have a computer
problem, contact me as soon as possible.
Schedule of Class Meetings
- Monday, 24 Jan.
- Monday, 31 Jan.
- Textual Criticism and Bibliography. Readings: W. W.
Rationale of Copy-Text" (on-line); Fredson Bowers, "Current
Theories of Copy-Text, with an Example from Dryden" (photocopy);
Jerome McGann, "What Is Critical Editing?" (photocopy)); textual
variants to Frankenstein (Appendix B in Butler's edition);
Anne K. Mellor, "Revising Frankenstein." Reports: Textual
- Monday, 7 Feb.
- Historical and Biographical Criticism. Readings: Anne
K. Mellor, "My Hideous Progeny"; John Clubbe, "The Tempest-toss'd
Summer of 1816: Mary Shelley's Frankenstein"; Laura E.
Crouch, "Davy's A Discourse, Introductory to a Course of
Lectures on Chemistry: A Possible Scientific Source of
Frankenstein"; Jane Blumberg, "Frankenstein and the
'Good Cause.'" Reports: Research exercises in the library.
- Monday, 14 Feb.
- Formalism. Readings: Rivkin and Ryan, "Formalisms"
(LT, pp. 3-7); Boris Eichenbaum, "Introduction to the
Formal Method" (LT, pp. 8-16); Cleanth Brooks, "The
Formalist Critics" (LT, pp. 52-57) and "The Language of
Paradox" (LT, pp. 58-68); Peter Brooks, "'Godlike
Science/Unhallowed Arts': Language, Nature, and Monstrosity."
- Monday, 21 Feb.
- Structuralism. Readings: Jonathan Culler, "The
Linguistic Foundation" (LT, pp. 73-75); Ferdinand de
Saussure, selection from Course in General Linguistics
(LT, pp. 76-90); Roman Jakobson, "Two Aspects of Language"
(LT, pp. 91-95); J. L. Austin, selection from How to Do
Things with Words (LT, pp. 96-100); Claude
Lévi-Strauss, "The Structural Study of Myth" (LT,
pp. 101-15); Andrew Griffin, "Fire and Ice in
- Monday, 28 Feb.
- Poststructuralism. Readings: Rivkin and Ryan, "The
Class of 1968" (LT, pp. 333-57); Jacques Derrida,
"Différance" (LT, pp. 385-407); Michel
Foucault, selections from The Order of Things (LT,
pp. 377-84) and The Archeology of Knowledge (LT,
pp. 421-28); Christian Bok, "The Monstrosity of Representation:
Frankenstein and Rousseau."
- Monday, 6 March
- Marxism. Readings: Rivkin and Ryan, "Starting with
Zero: Basic Marxism" (LT, pp. 231-42); G. W. F. Hegel,
"Dialectics" (LT, pp. 243-46); Karl Marx, selections from
Grundrisse (LT, pp. 247-50), The German
Ideology (LT, pp. 250-56), "Wage Labor and Capital"
(LT, pp. 262-67), and Capital (LT, pp.
268-76); Georg Lukács, selection from The Historical
Novel (LT, pp. 290-93); Louis Althusser, "Ideology and
Ideological State Apparatuses" (LT, pp. 294-304); Slavoj
Zizek, selection from The Sublime Object of Ideology
(LT, pp. 312-25); Elsie B. Michie, "Frankenstein
and Marx's Theories of Alienated Labor."
- Monday, 13 March
- No class: Spring break.
- Monday, 20 March
- Feminism. Readings: Rivkin and Ryan, "Feminist
Paradigms" (LT, pp. 527-32); Luce Irigaray, "The Power of
Discourse and the Subordination of the Feminine" (LT, pp.
570-73) and "Commodities amongst Themselves" (LT, pp.
574-77); Hélène Cixous, "Sorties" (LT, pp.
578-84); Sandra M. Gilbert and Susan Gubar, selection from The
Madwoman in the Attic (LT, pp. 596-611) and "Horror's
Twin: Mary Shelley's Monstrous Eve"; Ellen Moers, "Female
Gothic"; Barbara Johnson, "My Monster/My Self."
- Monday, 27 March
- Gender Studies and Queer Theory. Readings: Rivkin and
Ryan, "Contingencies of Gender" (LT, pp. 675-78);
selection from Michel Foucault, The History of Sexuality
(LT, pp. 683-91); Teresa de Lauretis, "The Technology of
Gender" (LT, pp. 713-21); Eve K. Sedgwick, selection from
Between Men (LT, pp. 696-712) and "Toward the
Gothic: Terrorism and Homosexual Panic."
- Monday, 3 April
- Psychoanalytic Criticism. Readings: Rivkin and Ryan,
"Strangers to Ourselves: Psychoanalysis" (LT, pp. 119-27);
selections from Freud (LT, pp. 128-77); selections from
Lacan (LT, pp. 178-205); Paul Sherwin,
"Frankenstein: Creation as Catastrophe"; Peter Brooks,
"What is a Monster? (According to Frankenstein)."
- Monday, 10 April
- Ethnic Studies and Postcolonialism. Readings: Rivkin
and Ryan, "English without Shadows, Literature on a World Scale"
(LT, pp. 851-55); Edward Said, selection from
Orientalism (LT, pp. 873-86); Henry Louis Gates,
"The Blackness of Blackness: A Critique on the Sign and the
Signifying Monkey" (LT, pp. 903-22); Homi Bhabha,
selection from The Location of Culture (LT, pp.
945-57); Gayatri Chakravorti Spivak, "Three Women's Texts and a
Critique of Imperialism"; Zohreh T. Sullivan, "Race, Gender, and
Imperial Ideology in the Nineteenth Century."
- Monday, 17 April
- Cultural Studies. Readings: Rivkin and Ryan, "The
Politics of Culture" (LT, pp. 1025-27); Pierre Bourdieu,
selection from Distinction (LT, pp. 1028-36); Max
Horkheimer and Theodor Adorno, "The Culture Industry as Mass
Deception" (LT, pp. 1037-41); Stuart Ewen, selection from
All-Consuming Images: The Politics of Style in Contemporary
Culture (LT, pp. 1082-86); John Fiske, selection from
Television Culture (LT, pp. 1087-98); James Whale,
Frankenstein (1931 movie starring Boris Karloff); Harriet
E. Margolis, "Lost Baggage: or, The Hollywood Sidetrack"; David
Leon Higdon, "Frankenstein as Founding Myth in Gary
Larson's The Far Side."
- Monday, 24 April
- Conference Papers.
- Monday, 1 May
- Conference Papers.