ENG3407 D618, Gothic Literature and Visual Culture FA2016

active 2 years, 7 months ago
ENG3407 D618, Gothic Literature and Visual Culture FA2016
This Course is OPEN.
Professor(s)
Department
English
Course Code
ENG 3407
Semester / Year
Fall 2016
Course Description

In the eighteenth century, the Gothic genre emerged to enable a new type of reading and thinking about what it means to be human: it created a new imaginative space in which to consider not only dreams and nightmares, but also fantasies of alternate identities. It was possible, through the Gothic, to imagine vampires, zombies, werewolves, and other types of monsters that reflect and mutate human desires.

The purpose of this course is to gain a better understanding of the popular genre of the Gothic as it was developed and practiced in the late-eighteenth century and through to today in a variety of cultural contexts. An important foundation to this class is the idea that the Gothic is more than simply mysterious or strange; it is a transgressive and provocative sort of strange.

The course will focus on key concepts such as horror, haunting, madness, monsters, and the undead, concepts that serve as entry points to theories such as the uncanny, queerness, and the sublime. Students will critically read, analyze, and write about the ways that the Gothic questions what it means to be normal or accepted. The class will learn about and practice using tools for reading, interpreting, and critically responding to fiction, film, poetry, and other cultural manifestations of the Gothic. In addition, students will participate in conversations about contemporary American identities and also engage in experiential learning through field trips to Gothic architectural spaces.

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