2012-2013 Undergraduate Catalog

Comparative Literature

Students may complete a major or minor in Comparative Literature.

Steering Committee

Bryn Mawr College

Elizabeth Allen, Professor of Russian and Comparative Literature on the Myra T. Cooley Lectureship in Russian
Pim Higginson, Associate Professor of French and Director of Africana Studies
Hoang Nguyen, Assistant Professor of English and Film Studies
Maria Cristina Quintero, Professor of Spanish and Director of Comparative Literature
Roberta Ricci, Chair and Associate Professor of Italian and Director of Film Studies
Azade Seyhan, Fairbank Professor in the Humanities, Professor of German and Comparative Literature, Interim Chair of German, and Director of Comparative Literature

Haverford

Israel Burshatin, Professor
Maud McInerney, Associate Professor of English
Jerry Miller, Assistant Professor of Philosophy
Deborah Roberts, Professor of Classics and Comparative Literature
Roberto Castillo Sandoval, Associate Professor of Spanish & Comparative Literature
Ulrich Schoenherr, Associate Professor of German and Comparative Literature
David Sedley, Associate Professor of French
Travis Zadeh, Assistant Professor of Religion              

The study of Comparative Literature situates literature in an international perspective; examines transnational cultural connections through literary history, literary criticism, critical theory, and poetics; and works toward a nuanced understanding of the socio-cultural functions of literature. The structure of the program allows students to engage in such diverse areas of critical inquiry as East-West cultural relations, global censorship and human rights, diaspora studies, film history and theory, and aesthetics of modernity. Therefore, interpretive methods from other disciplines also play a role in the comparative study of literature; among these are anthropology, ethnology, philosophy, history, history of art, religion, classical studies, area studies (Africana studies, Middle Eastern studies, Latin American studies, among others), gender studies, and other arts.

Comparative Literature students are required to have a reading knowledge of at least one foreign language adequate to the advanced study of literature in that language. Some Comparative Literature courses may require reading knowledge of a foreign language as a prerequisite for admission. Students considering graduate work in Comparative Literature should also study a second foreign language.

Major Requirements

Requirements for the Comparative Literature major are COML 200: Introduction to Comparative Literature (normally taken in the sophomore year); six literature courses at the 200 level or above, balanced between two literature departments (of which English may be one)*—at least two of these (one in each national literature) must be at the 300 level or above, or its equivalent as approved in advance by the adviser; one course in critical theory; two electives; COML 398: Theories and Methods in Comparative Literature and 399: Senior Seminar in Comparative Literature.

*In the case of languages for which literature courses in the original language are not readily accessible, students may on occasion be allowed to count a course taught in English translation for which they do at least part of the reading in the original language.

Honors

Students who, in the judgment of the advisory committee, have done distinguished work in their courses and in the senior seminar will be considered for departmental honors.

Minor Requirements

Requirements for the minor are COML 200 and 398, plus four additional courses—two each in the literature of two languages. At least one of these four courses must be at the 300 level. Students who minor in comparative literature are encouraged to choose their national literature courses from those with a comparative component.

Both majors and minors are encouraged to work closely with the chairs and members of the advisory committee in shaping their programs.

NOTE: Please note that not all topics courses (B223, 299, 321, 325, 326, 340) count toward COML elective requirements. See adviser.

COURSES

COML B200 Introduction to Comparative Literature

This course explores a variety of approaches to the comparative or transnational study of literature through readings of several kinds: texts from different cultural traditions that raise questions about the nature and function of storytelling and literature; texts that comment on, respond to, and rewrite other texts from different historical periods and nations; translations; and readings in critical theory.
Requirement(s): Division III: Humanities
Approach: Critical Interpretation (CI)
Units: 1.0
Instructor(s): Quintero,M.
(Spring 2013)

COML B209 Introduction to Literary Analysis: Philosophical Approaches to Criticism

Designated theory course. An introduction to various methods of reading the literary text from the perspective of critical methods informed by philosophical ideas. In their quest for self-understanding and knowledge, literature and philosophy share similar forms of inquiry and imaginative modeling. Selected literary texts and critical essays focus on questions of language, translation, understanding, and identity in their relation to history, epistemology, ethics, and aesthetics. One of the main objectives of the course is to provide students with the critical tools necessary for an informed reading of texts.
Requirement(s): Division III: Humanities
Crosslisting(s): GERM-B209; PHIL-B209
Units: 1.0
(Not Offered 2012-13)

COML B211 Primo Levi, the Holocaust and Its Aftermath

A consideration, through analysis and appreciation of his major works, of how the horrific experience of the Holocaust awakened in Primo Levi a growing awareness of his Jewish heritage and led him to become one of the dominant voices of that tragic historical event, as well as one of the most original new literary figures of post-World War II Italy. Always in relation to Levi and his works, attention will also be given to other Italian women writers whose works are also connected with the Holocaust.
Requirement(s): Division III: Humanities
Counts toward: International Studies Minor
Crosslisting(s): ITAL-B211; HEBR-B211
Units: 1.0
(Not Offered 2012-13)

COML B212 Borges y sus lectores

Primary emphasis on Borges and his poetics of reading; other writers are considered to illustrate the semiotics of texts, society, and traditions
Requirement(s): Division III: Humanities
Crosslisting(s): SPAN-B211
Units: 1.0
(Not Offered 2012-13)

COML B213 Theory in Practice: Critical Discourses in the Humanities

An examination in English of leading theories of interpretation from Classical Tradition to Modern and Post-Modern Time.
Requirement(s): Division III: Humanities
Approach: Critical Interpretation (CI)
Crosslisting(s): ITAL-B213; ENGL-B213; FREN-B213; GERM-B213; HART-B213; PHIL-B253; RUSS-B253
Units: 1.0
(Not Offered 2012-13)

COML B220 Writing the Self in the Middle Ages

What leads people to write about their lives? Do men and women present themselves differently? Do they think different issues are important? How do they claim authority for their thoughts and experiences? We shall address these questions, reading a wide range of autobiography from the Medieval period in the West, with a particular emphasis on women’s writing and on feminist critiques of autobiographical practice.
Requirement(s): Division III: Humanities
Approach: Critical Interpretation (CI)
Counts toward: Gender and Sexuality Studies
Crosslisting(s): CSTS-B220
Units: 1.0
Instructor(s): Conybeare,C.
(Fall 2012)

COML B222 Aesthetics: The Nature and Experience of Art

Here are some questions we will discuss in this course: What sort of thing is a work of art? Can criticism in the arts be objective? Do such cultural entities answer to more than one admissible interpretation? What is the role of a creator’s intentions in fixing upon admissible interpretations? What is the nature of aesthetic experience? What is creativity in the arts? Readings will be drawn from contemporary sources from the analytic and continental traditions, including John Dewey’s Art as Experience, and works in Gary Iseminger, ed., Intention and Interpretation. Prerequisite: One introductory course in philosophy.
Requirement(s): Division III: Humanities
Crosslisting(s): PHIL-B222
Units: 1.0
(Not Offered 2012-13)

COML B223 Topics In German Cultural Studies

This is a topic course. Course content varies.
Requirement(s): Division III: Humanities
Approach: Cross-Cultural Analysis (CC); Critical Interpretation (CI)
Crosslisting(s): GERM-B223; CITY-B247
Units: 1.0
Instructor(s): Schlipphacke,H.
(Fall 2012)

COML B225 Censorship: Historical Contexts, Local Practices and Global Resonance

This course examines the ban on books and art in the US, Latin America, the Middle East, and Eastern Europe through a study of the historical, political, and sociocultural conditions of censorship practices and the rhetorical strategies writers and artists use to translate repression and trauma into idioms of resistance. Prerequisite: EMLY B001 or a 100-level intensive writing course.
Requirement(s): Division III: Humanities
Approach: Cross-Cultural Analysis (CC)
Counts toward: Latin Amer/Latino/Iberian Peoples and Cultures; Middle East Studies
Units: 1.0
(Not Offered 2012-13)

COML B231 Cultural Profiles in Modern Exile

This course investigates the anthropological, philosophical, psychological, cultural, and literary aspects of modern exile. It studies exile as experience and metaphor in the context of modernity, and examines the structure of the relationship between imagined/remembered homelands and transnational identities, and the dialectics of language loss and bi- and multi-lingualism. Particular attention is given to the psychocultural dimensions of linguistic exclusion and loss. Readings of works by Julia Alvarez, Anita Desai, Sigmund Freud, Milan Kundera, Friedrich Nietzsche, Salman Rushdie, and others.
Requirement(s): Division III: Humanities
Counts toward: Latin Amer/Latino/Iberian Peoples and Cultures; International Studies Major
Crosslisting(s): GERM-B231; ANTH-B231
Units: 1.0
Instructor(s): Seyhan,A.
(Spring 2013)

COML B234 Postcolonial Literature in English

This course will survey a broad range of novels and poems written while countries were breaking free of British colonial rule. Readings will also include cultural theorists interested in defining literary issues that arise from the postcolonial situation.
Requirement(s): Division III: Humanities
Crosslisting(s): ENGL-B234
Units: 1.0
(Not Offered 2012-13)

COML B237 The Dictator Novel in the Americas

This course examines representations of dictatorship in Latin American and Latina/o novels. We will explore the relationship between narrative form and absolute power by analyzing the literary techniques writers use to contest authoritarianism. We will compare dictator novels from the United States, the Caribbean, Central America, and the Southern Cone. Prerequisite: only for students wishing to take the course for major/minor credit in SPAN is SPAN B200/B202.
Requirement(s): Division III: Humanities
Approach: Critical Interpretation (CI)
Counts toward: Gender and Sexuality Studies; Latin Amer/Latino/Iberian Peoples and Cultures
Crosslisting(s): ENGL-B237; SPAN-B237
Units: 1.0
(Not Offered 2012-13)

COML B238 The History of Cinema 1895 to 1945 Silent Film: From the United States to Soviet Russia and Beyond

This course will explore cinema from its earliest, most primitive beginnings up to the end of the silent era. While the course will focus on a variety of historical and theoretical aspects of cinema, the primary aim is to look at films analytically. Emphasis will be on the various artistic methods that went into the direction and production of a variety of celebrated silent films from around the world. These films will be considered in many contexts: artistic, historical, social, and even philosophical, so that students can develop a deeper understanding of silent cinema’s rapid evolution.
Requirement(s): Division III: Humanities
Counts toward: Film Studies
Crosslisting(s): ENGL-B238; HART-B238; RUSS-B238
Units: 1.0
(Not Offered 2012-13)

COML B245 Interdisciplinary Approaches to German Literature and Culture

This is a topics course. Course content varies.
Requirement(s): Division III: Humanities
Counts toward: Gender and Sexuality Studies
Crosslisting(s): GERM-B245; ENGL-B260
Units: 1.0
Instructor(s): Schlipphacke,H.
(Spring 2013)

COML B248 The Reception of Classics in the Hispanic World

A survey of the reception of Classical literature in the Spanish-speaking world. We read select literary works in translation, ranging from Renaissance Spain to contemporary Latin America, side-by-side with their classical models, to examine what is culturally unique about their choice of authors, themes, and adaptation of the material.
Requirement(s): Division III: Humanities
Counts toward: Latin Amer/Latino/Iberian Peoples and Cultures
Crosslisting(s): CSTS-B248; SPAN-B248
Units: 1.0
(Not Offered 2012-13)

COML B251 Romantic Prose Fiction

This seminar studies representative works of Romantic poetry’s “poor relation”—prose fiction. Readings include novels from England, France, Germany and Russia, such as Frankenstein, A Hero of Our Time, The Red and the Black, The Sorrows of Young Werther and Wuthering Heights, as well as short stories. Discussions include such topics as national varieties of Romanticism, the Romantic ideals of nature, love and the self, and the impact of the revolutionary era on art. Illustrative examples of Romantic painting and music are also considered. All readings and discussions in English.
Requirement(s): Division III: Humanities
Approach: Critical Interpretation (CI)
Units: 1.0
(Not Offered 2012-13)


COML B257 The Realist Novel Revisited

This seminar undertakes the study of a deceptively simple cultural and literary historical concept—realism—by closely reading well-known 19th-century novels by George Eliot, Gustave Flaubert, Theodor Fontane, Henry James, Stendhal, Leo Tolstoy and Ivan Turgenev, all of which have traditionally been placed within realism’s parameters. Critical essays exploring the nature of realism, either in general or in a particular author’s works, are also discussed. The ethical implications of the realist enterprise and, more broadly, the possible relations between art and life receive special scrutiny.
Requirement(s): Division III: Humanities
Approach: Critical Interpretation (CI)
Units: 1.0
(Not Offered 2012-13)

COML B260 Ariel/Caliban y el discurso americano

A study of the transformations of Ariel/Calibán as images of Latin American culture.
Requirement(s): Division III: Humanities
Approach: Critical Interpretation (CI); Inquiry into the Past (IP)
Counts toward: Latin Amer/Latino/Iberian Peoples and Cultures
Crosslisting(s): SPAN-B260
Units: 1.0
Instructor(s): Sacerio-Garí,E.
(Fall 2012)

COML B261 The Russian Anti-Novel

A study of 19th- and 20th-century Russian novels focusing on their strategies of opposing or circumventing European literary conventions. Works by Bulgakov, Dostoevsky, Nabokov, Pushkin, and Tolstoy, are compared to Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice and other exemplars of the Western novelistic tradition. All readings, lectures, and discussions in English.
Requirement(s): Division III: Humanities
Crosslisting(s): RUSS-B261
Units: 1.0
(Not Offered 2012-13)

COML B266 Travel and Transgression

Examines ancient and medieval travel literature, exploring movement and cultural exchange, from otherworld odysseys and religious pilgrimages to trade expeditions and explorations across the Atlantic. Mercantile documents, maps, pilgrim’s logbooks, and theoretical and anthropological discussions of place, colonization, and identity-formation will supplement our literary analysis. Emphasizes how those of the Middle Ages understood encounters with “alien” cultures, symbolic representations of space, and the development of national identities, exploring their influence on contemporary debates surrounding racial, cultural, religious, and national boundaries.
Requirement(s): Division III: Humanities
Crosslisting(s): ENGL-B266
Units: 1.0
Instructor(s): Taylor,J.
(Fall 2012)

COML B271 Litertura y delincuencia: explorando la novela picaresca

A study of the origins, development and transformation of the picaresque genre from its origins in 16th- and 17th-century Spain through the 21st century. Using texts, literature, painting, and film from Spain and Latin America, we will explore topics such as the construction of the (fictional) self, the poetics and politics of criminality, transgression in gender and class.
Requirement(s): Division III: Humanities
Crosslisting(s): SPAN-B270
Units: 1.0
Instructor(s): Gastanaga,J.
(Fall 2012)

COML B274 From Myth to Modern Cinema: From Dionysus to the Silver Screen

Explores how contemporary film, which is, like Greek drama, a creative medium appealing to the entire demographic spectrum, looks back to the ancient origins. In addition to literary-historical interpretation, the course will involve various methodological approaches such as film and gender theory, psychoanalysis, and feminist theory. Current topic description: This course explores how contemporary film, a creative medium appealing to the entire demographic spectrum like Greek drama, looks back to the ancient origins. Examining both films that are directly based on Greek plays and films that make use of classical material without being explicitly classical in plot or setting, we will discuss how Greek mythology is rewritten, re-assessed and appropriated for modern audiences and how the classical past continues to be culturally significant. In addition to literary-historical interpretation, particular attention will be paid to feminist theory, film and gender studies, and psychoanalysis.
Requirement(s): Division III: Humanities
Crosslisting(s): CSTS-B274
Units: 1.0
Instructor(s): Baertschi,A.
(Fall 2012)

COML B278 Reading the Middle East

This course examines major themes in modern Middle Eastern literatures through selected prose works by prominent modern writers in translation from Arabic, Hebrew, Persian and Turkish. Topics include tradition versus modernity, gender and the family, the individual and the state, and the impact of regional conflict.
Requirement(s): Division III: Humanities
Approach: Critical Interpretation (CI)
Units: 1.0
(Not Offered 2012-13)

COML B279 Introduction to African Literature

This course examines major themes in modern Middle Eastern literatures through selected prose works by prominent modern writers in translation from Arabic, Hebrew, Persian and Turkish. Topics include tradition versus modernity, gender and the family, the individual and the state, and the impact of regional conflict.
Requirement(s): Division III: Humanities
Approach: Critical Interpretation (CI)
Counts toward: Africana Studies
Crosslisting(s): ENGL-B279
Units: 1.0
Instructor(s): Beard,L.
(Fall 2012)

COML B293 The Play of Interpretation

Designated theory course. A study of the methodologies and regimes of interpretation in the arts, humanistic sciences, and media and cultural studies, this course focuses on common problems of text, authorship, reader/spectator, and translation in their historical and formal contexts. Literary, oral, and visual texts from different cultural traditions and histories will be studied through interpretive approaches informed by modern critical theories. Readings in literature, philosophy, popular culture, and film will illustrate how theory enhances our understanding of the complexities of history, memory, identity, and the trials of modernity.
Requirement(s): Division III: Humanities
Approach: Critical Interpretation (CI)
Counts toward: International Studies Major
Crosslisting(s): ENGL-B292; PHIL-B293
Units: 1.0
Instructor(s): Seyhan,A.
(Fall 2012)

COML B302 Le printemps de la parole féminine: femmes écrivains des débuts

This study of selected women authors from the French Middle Ages, Renaissance and Classical periods—among them, Marie de France, the trobairitz, Christine de Pisan, Louise Labé, Marguerite de Navarre, and Madame de Lafayette—examines the way in which they appropriate and transform the male writing tradition and define themselves as self-conscious artists within or outside it. Particular attention will be paid to identifying recurring concerns and structures in their works, and to assessing their importance to female writing: among them, the poetics of silence, reproduction as a metaphor for artistic creation, and sociopolitical engagement.
Requirement(s): Division III: Humanities
Counts toward: Gender and Sexuality Studies
Crosslisting(s): FREN-B302
Units: 1.0
Instructor(s): Armstrong,G.
(Spring 2013)

COML B306 Film Theory

An introduction to major developments in film theory and criticism. Topics covered include: the specificity of film form; cinematic realism; the cinematic “author”; the politics and ideology of cinema; the relation between cinema and language; spectatorship, identification, and subjectivity; archival and historical problems in film studies; the relation between film studies and other disciplines of aesthetic and social criticism. Each week of the syllabus pairs critical writing(s) on a central principle of film analysis with a cinematic example. Class will be divided between discussion of critical texts and attempts to apply them to a primary cinematic text.
Requirement(s): Division III: Humanities
Counts toward: Film Studies
Crosslisting(s): ENGL-B306; HART-B306
Units: 1.0
Instructor(s): Levine,S.
(Spring 2013)

COML B310 Genres of Italian Popular Fiction in a Comparative Context

This course explores the Italian “giallo” (detective fiction), today one of the most successful literary genres among Italian readers and authors alike. Through a comparative perspective, the course will analyze not only the inter-relationship between this popular genre and “high literature,” but also the role of detective fiction as a mirror of social anxieties. In Spring 2011, ITAL B310 will be offered in English. Italian majors taking this course for Italian credit will be required to meet for an additional hour with the instructor and to do the readings and writing in Italian. Prerequisites: one literature course at the 200 level.
Requirement(s): Division III: Humanities
Crosslisting(s): ITAL-B310
Units: 1.0
(Not Offered 2012-13)

COML B312 Crimen y detectives en la narrativa hispánica contemporánea

An analysis of the rise of the hardboiled genre in contemporary Hispanic narrative and its contrast to classic detective fiction, as a context for understanding contemporary Spanish and Latin American culture. Discussion of pertinent theoretical implications and the social and political factors that contributed to the genre’s evolution and popularity.
Requirement(s): Division III: Humanities
Crosslisting(s): SPAN-B311
Units: 1.0
(Not Offered 2012-13)

COML B313 Classical Bodies

An examination of the conceptions of the human body evidenced in Greek and Roman art and literature, with emphasis on issues that have persisted in the Western tradition. Topics include the fashioning of concepts of male and female standards of beauty and their implications; conventions of visual representation; the nude; clothing and its symbolism; the athletic ideal; physiognomy; medical theory and practice; the visible expression of character and emotions; and the formulation of the “classical ideal” in antiquity and later times.
Requirement(s): Division III: Humanities
Counts toward: Gender and Sexuality Studies
Crosslisting(s): ARCH-B303; HART-B305
Units: 1.0
(Not Offered 2012-13)

COML B314 Troilus and Criseyde

Examines Chaucer’s magisterial Troilus and Criseyde, his epic romance of love, loss, and betrayal. We will supplement sustained analysis of the poem with primary readings on free will and courtly love as well as theoretical readings on gender and sexuality and translation. We will also read Boccaccio’s Il Filostrato, Robert Henryson’s Testament of Cresseid and Shakespeare’s Troilus and Cressida.
Counts toward: Gender and Sexuality Studies
Crosslisting(s): ENGL-B314
Units: 1.0
(Not Offered 2012-13)

COML B321 Advanced Topics in German Cultural Studies

This is a topics course. Course content varies.
Requirement(s): Division III: Humanities
Counts toward: Gender and Sexuality Studies
Crosslisting(s): GERM-B321; CITY-B319
Units: 1.0
(Not Offered 2012-13)

COML B322 Queens, Nuns, and Other Deviants in the Early Modern Iberian World

The course examines literary, historical, and legal texts from the early modern Iberian world (Spain, Mexico, Peru) through the lens of gender studies. The course is divided around three topics: royal bodies (women in power), cloistered bodies (women in the convent), and delinquent bodies (figures who defy legal and gender normativity). Course is taught in English and is open to all juniors or seniors who have taken at least one 200-level course in a literature department.
Requirement(s): Division III: Humanities
Counts toward: Gender and Sexuality Studies; Latin Amer/Latino/Iberian Peoples and Cultures
Crosslisting(s): SPAN-B322
Units: 1.0
(Not Offered 2012-13)

COML B323 Culture and Interpretation

This course will pursue such questions as the following. For all objects of interpretation—including works of art, music, literature, persons or cultures—must there be a single right interpretation? If not, what is to prevent one from sliding into an interpretive anarchism? Does interpretation affect the nature or the number of an object of interpretation? Does the singularity or multiplicity of interpretations mandate such ontologies as realism or constructivism? Discussions will be based on contemporary readings.
Requirement(s): Division III: Humanities
Counts toward: International Studies Major
Crosslisting(s): PHIL-B323
Units: 1.0
Instructor(s): Krausz,M.
(Fall 2012)

COML B325 Etudes avancées

An in-depth study of a particular topic, event or historical figure in French civilisation. The seminar topic rotates among many subjects: La Révolution frantaise: histoire, littérature et culture; L’Environnement naturel dans la culture française; Mal et valeurs éthiques; Le Cinéma et la politique, 1940-1968; Le Nationalisme en France et dans les pays francophones; Etude socio-culturelle des arts du manger en France du Moyen Age à nos jours. Current topic description: A historical, social and anthropological approach to religion(s) through literature in post-revolutionary France.
Requirement(s): Division III: Humanities
Crosslisting(s): FREN-B325
Units: 1.0
Instructor(s): Mahuzier,B.
(Fall 2012)

COML B326 Etudes avancées

An in-depth study of a particular topic, event or historical figure in French civilisation. The seminar topic rotates among many subjects: La Révolution frantaise: histoire, littérature et culture; L’Environnement naturel dans la culture frantaise; Mal et valeurs éthiques; Le Cinéma et la politique, 1940-1968; Le Nationalisme en France et dans les pays francophones; Etude socio-culturelle des arts du manger en France du Moyen Age à nos jours.
Requirement(s): Division III: Humanities
Crosslisting(s): FREN-B326
Units: 1.0
(Not Offered 2012-13)

COML B340 Topics in Baroque Art

This is a topics course. Course content varies. Current topic description: The course considers costume and fashion from the perspective of visual and cultural studies, combined with a historical acknowledgment of consumerism. Representations of costume in Europe and Latin America from the fifteenth century forward to the present day.
Requirement(s): Division III: Humanities
Counts toward: Gender and Sexuality Studies
Crosslisting(s): HART-B340
Units: 1.0
Instructor(s): McKim-Smith,G.
(Fall 2012)

COML B345 Topics in Narrative Theory

Narrative theory through the lens of a specific genre, period or style of writing. Recent topics include Victorian Novels and Ethnic Novels. Current topic description: This course traces the development of the U.S. ethnic novel. We will examine novels by Native Americans, Chicana/os, and African Americans, focusing on key formal innovations in their respective traditions. In addition, we will become versed in key concepts developed by narrative theorists to understand the genre of the novel.
Counts toward: Gender and Sexuality Studies; Latin Amer/Latino/Iberian Peoples and Cultures
Crosslisting(s): ENGL-B345
Units: 1.0
Instructor(s): Harford Vargas,J.
(Spring 2013)

COML B350 Voix médiévales et échos modernes

A study of selected 19th- and 20th-century works inspired by medieval subjects, such as the Grail and Arthurian legends and the Tristan and Yseut stories, and by medieval genres, such as the roman, saints’ lives, or the miracle play. Included are works by Bonnefoy, Cocteau, Flaubert, Genevoix, Giono, Gracq, Hugo, and Yourcenar.
Requirement(s): Division III: Humanities
Crosslisting(s): FREN-B350
Units: 1.0
(Not Offered 2012-13)

COML B351 Medieval Encounters in Contemporary Fiction

Muslim, Christian and Jewish relations, particularly in the medieval period, have occupied a number of recent works of fiction in English and other languages. Why that subject has so captured the literary imagination and how individual authors treat it are the central issues the course aims to ad-dress. Selected works of fiction will serve as entry points into questions of how different religious communities interacted with and perceived one another before modern times. Another goal of the course is to make students think about how works of historical fiction serve to shape as well as to challenge current religious sensibilities.
Requirement(s): Division III: Humanities
Units: 1.0
(Not Offered 2012-13)

COML B365 Erotica: Love and Art in Plato and Shakespeare

The course explores the relationship between love and art, “eros” and “poesis,” through in-depth study of Plato’s Phaedus and Symposium, Shakespeare’s As You Like It and Antony and Cleopatra, and essays by modern commentators (including David Halperin, Anne Carson, Martha Nussbaum, Marjorie Garber, and Stanley Cavell). We will also read Shakespeare’s Sonnets and Romeo and Juliet.
Requirement(s): Division III: Humanities
Counts toward: Gender and Sexuality Studies
Crosslisting(s): ENGL-B365; PHIL-B365; POLS-B365
Units: 1.0
Instructor(s): Hedley,J., Salkever,S.
(Spring 2013)

COML B375 Interpreting Mythology

The myths of the Greeks have provoked outrage and fascination, interpretation and retelling, censorship and elaboration, beginning with the Greeks themselves. We will see how some of these stories have been read and understood, recounted and revised, in various cultures and eras, from ancient tellings to modern movies. We will also explore some of the interpretive theories by which these tales have been understood, from ancient allegory to modern structural and semiotic theories.
Requirement(s): Division III: Humanities
Crosslisting(s): CSTS-B375
Units: 1.0
(Not Offered 2012-13)

COML B388 Contemporary African Fiction

Noting that the official colonial independence of most African countries dates back only half a century, this course focuses on the fictive experiments of the most recent decade. A few highly controversial works from the 90’s serve as an introduction to very recent work. Most works are in English. To experience depth as well as breadth, there is a small cluster of works from South Africa. With novels and tales from elsewhere on the huge African continent, we will get a glimpse of “living in the present” in history and letters.
Requirement(s): Division III: Humanities
Counts toward: Africana Studies
Crosslisting(s): ENGL-B388
Units: 1.0
Instructor(s): Beard,L.
(Spring 2013)

COML B398 Theories and Methods in Comparative Literature

This course, required of all senior comparative literature majors in preparation for writing the senior thesis in the spring semester, has a twofold purpose: to review interpretive approaches informed by critical theories that enhance our understanding of literary and cultural texts; and to help students prepare a preliminary outline of their senior theses. Throughout the semester, students research theoretical paradigms that bear on their own comparative thesis topics in order to situate those topics in an appropriate critical context.
Units: 1.0
Instructor(s): Seyhan,A.
(Fall 2012)

COML B399 Senior Seminar in Comparative Literature

Thesis writing seminar. Research methods.
Units: 1.0
Instructor(s): Higginson,P.
(Spring 2013)

COML B403 Supervised Work

Units: 1.0
(Fall 2012, Spring 2013)