Comparative Literature Graduate Course Offerings

Fall 2020

CPLT 735 1 "Composition Practicum/Pedagogy"
Kathleen Leuschen
T 10AM-1PM
Max 7
[Crosslisted with ENG 791]
Content: This course provides an opportunity for you to design (and practice teaching) engaging writing courses that help students achieve the learning outcomes for Emory’s first-year writing program. You will participate in a number of activities central to post-secondary instruction in composition, including outcomes generation and customization, assignment and syllabus development, and scoring guide/rubric development and application. You will respond to sample student papers and conduct lessons and activities that integrate the texts you have selected. You will also observe and reflect on the classroom practices of a peer teaching a first-year course and your own teaching performance (via video capture). These activities are informed by praxis-oriented readings selected to broaden your knowledge of writing instruction in the first-year course and across the curriculum.

By the time you finish this course, you should be able to

* Describe the importance of “rhetorical conceptualization” and integrate a rhetorical lexicon into your course.
* Describe the significance of portfolio teaching and portfolio thinking for writing instruction and incorporate a semester-long portfolio project into your course.
* Develop assignments and lessons that enable multilingual speakers to leverage their language abilities and experiences.
* Practice traits of a reflective instructor by evaluating and improving upon what you learn from planning and delivering lessons.
* Develop process-oriented strategies for teaching students to write in various genres and modes about complex ideas and reading materials.
* Use writing to help students practice various critical thinking skills (e.g., analysis, synthesis, critique, interpretation, exemplification, definition, problem solving, and evaluation).
* Apply techniques that involve students in meaningful collaboration (e.g., peer review).
* Respond helpfully to student writing and develop valid grading tools (e.g., rubrics/scoring guides).
* Participate constructively in programmatic assessment activities.
* Develop short proposals for internally funded pedagogical grants.
Texts: TBA
Particulars: Department Consent Required.

CPLT 750R 1 "Literary Theories"
Geoffrey Bennington
Th 1-4PM
Max 10
[Crosslisted with FREN 780]
Content: The course explores some of the ways in which an influential way of thinking about language has affected ways of thinking about literature. After investigating the main tenets of structuralist theory, as derived from Saussure’s Cours de linguistique générale, we shall go on to see how the internal logic of structuralism led to the rather different positions often referred to as ‘post-structuralism’ and/or ‘post-modernism’, and to a questioning of the position of theory itself.
Texts: TBA
Particulars: TBA

CPLT 751 1 "Animal, Vegetable, Mineral"
Sean Meighoo

M 1-4PM
Max 12
Content: Recent work in the newly established and rapidly expanding interdisciplinary field of animal studies seems to have permanently unsettled the classical philosophical distinction between the “human” and the “animal.”  This body of work has effectively redefined nonhuman animals as ethical subjects themselves by complicating the distinction between the rational or linguistic “human” on one hand and the irrational or nonlinguistic “animal” on the other.

Yet even within the field of animal studies, the ethical status of the inanimate or nonsentient “plant” as well as the inorganic or nonliving “stone” remains very contentious.  New interdisciplinary fields have begun to emerge – fields with such tentative names as “critical plant studies” and “ecotheory” – further calling into question the distinction between the “human” and the “nonhuman” that the field of animal studies itself has already broached.

Does the claim for sentience among plants undermine the ongoing political struggle for animal rights?  Does the argument for some kind of agency on the part of stones overturn the very basis of all ethical thought and action?  Have the binary oppositions “rational/irrational” and “linguistic/nonlinguistic” that serve to define the human being within the classical philosophical tradition simply been replaced by the binary oppositions “animate/inanimate,” “sentient/nonsentient,” “organic/inorganic,” and “living/nonliving” within the field of animal studies?

• Matthew Calarco, Zoographies: The Question of the Animal from Heidegger to Derrida (New York: Columbia University Press, 2008), ISBN 978-0231140232;
• Michael Marder, Plant-Thinking: A Philosophy of Vegetal Life (New York: Columbia University Press, 2013), ISBN 978-0231161251;
• Jeffrey T. Nealon, Plant Theory: Biopower and Vegetal Life (Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press, 2016), ISBN 978-0804796750;
• Jeffrey Jerome Cohen, Stone: An Ecology of the Inhuman (Minneapolis: University of Minnesota, 2015), ISBN 978-0816692620;
• Timothy Morton, Ecology Without Nature: Rethinking Environmental Aesthetics (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 2007), ISBN 978-0674034853;
• Jane Bennett, Vibrant Matter: A Political Ecology of Things (Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 2010), ISBN 978-0822346333.
Particulars: Four response papers (3-4 pp. each, 40% total); Long essay (12-15 pp., 40%); Attendance and participation (20%).

CPLT 751R 4 "Idealogies of Theory: Édouard Glissant and Feminist Theory"
Valerie Loichot
T 1-4PM
Max 3
[Crosslisted with FREN 780, WGS 730R, & ENG 789]
Content: Martinican poet and Philosopher Edouard Glissant seems like an unlikely partner for feminist theory. Some critics have argued that the question of women, gender, and sexuality was thwarted in his writings that privilege the imperative of remaining human (i.e. non-gender-marked or coded as masculine by default) in a context of enslavement, colonization and de-colonization. This seminar will show, however, that Glissant’s thought had a lot to gain from women and feminist thinkers and poets, and that his theories (or Relation, Opacity, Creolization, Tout-Monde, and Caribbeanness/Antillanité) have a lot to contribute to feminist theories of sexuality, time, space, memory, theology, and ecology. The seminar is organized around systematic pairings of Glissant’s texts and its feminine/feminist interlocutors. Seminar contributors will be encouraged to propose and theorize their own pairings with authors from the syllabus and/or of their own choosing.
Texts: Readings by Glissant will include Le Discours antillais (Caribbean Discourse), Poétique de la Relation (Poetics of Relation), “Métissage et créolisation,” Traité du Tout-Monde (Treatise on the Whole-World), and Philosophie de la Relation. Texts by his interlocutors will include Gloria Anzaldúa’s Borderlands/La Frontera, Suzanne Césaire’s Grand camouflage (Great camouflage), Hélène Cixous’s “Le Sexe ou la tête” (“Castration or Decapitation”), Saidiya Hartman’s “Venus in Two Acts,” Luce Irigaray’s Ce Sexe qui n’en est pas un (This Sex Which is Not One), Kara Keeling’s Queer Times, Black Futures, Catherine Keller’s Cloud of the Impossible, María Lugone’s “The Coloniality of Gender,” Grace Nichol’s Startling the Flying Fish, M. NourbeSe Philip’s “Notanda,” Ntozake Shange’s A Daughter Geography, Christina Sharpe’s In the Wake, and Sylvia Wynter’s “Beyond Miranda’s Meaning.”
Particulars: Sustained participation (including involvement in seminar discussions, occasional short Canvas responses and mini-interventions on a concept or text), a twenty-minute oral presentation, and a 10-12-page final research paper plus annotated bibliography. The seminar is taught in English. Some reading knowledge of French is helpful but not required. Class discussions will be customized according to the registered students’ skills. We will discuss Glissant’s texts paying close attention to the original (with the help of seminar members who speak French). Students from the French doctoral program or students wishing to read and write in French will be encouraged to do so and will be given targeted assignments on texts available only in French.

CPLT 751 5 "Hermeneutics"
Jill Robbins

W 1-4PM
[Crosslisted with RLR 700]
Content: TBA
Texts: TBA
Particulars: TBA

CPLT 751 5 "Health Humanities"
Vincent Bruyere

W 1-4PM
[Crosslisted with FREN 770]
Content: In this seminar, the emergent field of Health Humanities serves as a platform to both think about the pressure to be interdisciplinary scholars in precarious times and reabsorb some of it in the form of close readings. A focus on temporality will allow us to make provisions for notions of demographic transition, chronic illness, and health crisis in the critical repertoire of affect studies, visual culture, and literary criticism.
Texts: TBA
Particulars: Taught in English.

CPLT 752R 1 "Romanticism, Imagination, Planetarity"
Deborah Elise White

Th 4-7PM
Max 6
[Crosslisted with ENG 730R]
Content: A survey of major works of British Romanticism as they explore encounters with the untranslatable and the inhuman in global contexts traditionally defined by revolution, industrialization, and imperialism. Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak has suggested the word planetarity to help name such encounters--that is, encounters with an alterity (or otherness) unassimilable both to economic formulas of capitalist globalization and to psychic figures of interiorized subjectivity. In this seminar we will consider how romantic-era prose, poetry, and drama is inextricable from such economic formulas and psychic figures and yet also the site of their coming into crisis--the site where their norms break down.  For many of these texts, “imagination” stands in a privileged relation to such moments of breakdown. What only seems paradoxical is that the planetary stakes of romanticism emerge from its investment in imagination or what Percy Shelley (channeling Sydney) calls “the defense of poetry.” This seeming paradox will inform much of our work, and also serve as a point of departure to address a wide range of issues informing romantic era writing. This seminar can serve as an introduction to the field and does not require any prior study of it.
Texts: The Major Works (OUP: 978-0199537914)
De Quincey: Confessions of an English Opium Eater (OUP: 978-0199600618)
Equiano: The Interesting Narrative and Other Writings (Penguin: ASIN B00C6ON9QU)
Keats: The Major Works (OUP: 978-0199554881)
Percy Shelley: Shelley's Poetry and Prose (Norton: 978-0393977523)
Charlotte Smith: The Story of Henrietta (Valencourt Classics: ASIN: B008S6379Y)Wordsworth: the Major Works (OUP: 978-0199536863.
Particulars: Assignments, attendance, participation in seminar discussion, 1500-word "book review" assignment, and oral presentation required of all students -- those taking the course for a letter grade will write a longer research-style paper (ca 18-20 pages) and those taking it S/U will write a short reflection on the semester's work and its relation to their other research interests (ca 5 pages).

CPLT 797R 1-SUP  Directed Readings
By permission of the Director.  Please contact the Program Office (N101 Callaway) for more information.

CPLT 798R 1  Supervised Research
For independent research aimed primarily at preparation for graduate exams and dissertation prospectus. Please contact the Program Office (N101 Callaway for more information).
*Must be taken S/U
Content: Variable Credit 1-12

CPLT 799R 1  Dissertation Research
By permission of the Director.  Please contact the Program Office (N101 Callaway) for more information.