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    English 122iw. Imagining the World in Medieval and Renaissance Literature

    Instructor: Alan Niles
    Tuesday & Thursday, 1:30-2:45pm | Location: TBA

    How did writers and audiences imagine the world before modernity? This course offers an introduction to the first 1000 years of English literature (roughly 700-1700) and the shifting terms through which writers were able to imagine the world beyond their borders. We will encounter hardy seafarers, fantastical monsters, and real and imagined peoples at the margins of Europe and beyond. We will study the genres of travel narrative, romance, epic, drama, and lyric, and the different ways these forms registered global connections, ideas of race, and cultural and religious difference. We will pay particular attention to the accelerated pace of global

    encounters and connections starting in the Renaissance, and the ways that English literature was able (or not) to register new peoples and places, new forms of economic connectivity, and the violence of colonialism and empire.

    Note: This course satisfies the English Concentration "Arrivals" requirement for the Class of 2022.

    English 124sg. Sex, Gender, and Shakespeare

    Instructor: Alan Niles
    Tuesday & Thursday, 9:00-10:15am | Location: TBA

    This class is an introduction to Shakespeare’s writings and their representations of sex, gender, romance, love, and queerness. We will study poems about erotic and queer desire, plays that stage ideas about gender and gender fluidity, and film adaptations that bring modern perspectives to race and sexuality. Readings will include such plays as Twelfth NightRomeo and JulietA Midsummer Night’s DreamTitus AndronicusMacbeth, and Measure for Measure; Shakespeare’s Sonnets; and films by Derek Jarman, Baz Luhrmann, and Julie Taymor. Throughout our course, we will ask: how are the forms of gender identity and sexual expression we encounter in Shakespeare’s works familiar, or different? How might they challenge, inspire, or disturb us today?

    Note: This course satisfies the English Concentration "Shakespeare" requirement for the Class of 2022.