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Clark University Home > Academic Catalog

Clark University    
  Dec 14, 2017
2017-2018 Academic Catalog

ENG 343 - Literary Theory & Global Culture

This seminar examines the myriad aesthetic choices available to fiction writers in the era commonly referred to as “globalization.” How do we imagine the relationship between literature and contemporary politics? In what ways do the increasingly permeable borders of the modern world reshape our understanding of literature? How does literature help us to understand the new idioms of selfhood that emerge in a global age? Is there a particular literary form that is best suited to represent - and critique - the era in which we live? This course will survey the vocabularies that humanities scholars have invoked to address the rapidly shifting institutions and cultural frameworks of global capitalism, including, for example, questions pertaining to literary aesthetics and form and debates regarding realism, modernism, and postmodernism. We will touch upon questions of relativism and discourses of human rights; ways of conceptualizing global belonging and global citizenship; and the aesthetics of realism and postmodernism as responses to world-historical events of the late twentieth century and beyond. Students can expect to encounter philosophically rich texts from key thinkers in postcolonial and cross-cultural studies. For undergraduate English majors this course satisfies the theory requirement.

Anticipated Terms Offered: Every year.