Graduate Courses, Summer & Fall 2005

Summer One 2005

Note: There are no graduate courses in Summer Two.

English 528: Seminar in Creative Writing
Professor Barbara Henning
12:00 pm to 4:30 pm

In this seminar in creative writing we will read and workshop both short stories as well as poetry. In the process we should learn about the borderline between the genres. Students will be expected to respond to published stories and poems as well as work by other students. During the workshop, there will also be exercises, free-writing and experiments, focusing on style and generating new material. I will try to shape the course around the interests of the particular students enrolled. Please contact me when you register so we can talk for a few minutes.

English 671: Feminist Theory and Literary Applications
Professor Carol Allen
Mondays & Wednesday
3:00 pm to 5:15 pm

This course introduces various theoretical frameworks that feminist scholars have devised in order to explain the conditions of women with the hopes that this understanding will lead to enlightenment and more pronounced freedom for women and, by extension, men. There is no unifying agreement on either what the conditions were that led to global, gender inequalities or how to fix the problem once the root causes have been identified. Thus we will spend the semester exploring the major schools of thought on the condition of women. Moving from theory to experience and back, each student is challenged to first comprehend both the general ideas and broader implications of each approach and then formulate her or his personal views on these ideas. Required texts may include:Feminist Frameworks, by Jaggar and Rothenberg; Feminist Thought, by Rosemarie Tong; Hawthorne's The Scarlett Letter; Morrison's Sula; poetry by Emily Dickenson; Conde's Tituba; an Esmeralda Santiago's American Dreams.

FALL 2005

English 523: Fiction Writing Workshop
The Short-Short Story: Episodes & Flash Fiction
Professor John High
6:10 to 8:30 pm

The Short-Short Story represents an exciting new form re-emerging in contemporary writing. These 2-3 pages stories often combine elements of poetry, parable, and performance writing within the basic framework of fiction. Their sudden impact results from both their brevity as well as their quick and potentially explosive pacing. This is an intensive writing workshop in which we will focus on the students' stories and process of writing. We'll study the essential framework and craft of fiction (character, setting, plot, point of view, etc.), while exploring the still undefined territory of the short-short genre. How can we craft our fictions to move with urgency, immediacy, and surprise? Short, episodic writing requires a vitality of voice, a sense of the sudden and unexpected in plotting, and the mind's careful meditation on the subtle nuances of events.

We'll look at ancient parables and mythic writings as well as at what's being published now as a way to examine how contemporary writers are experimenting with the form. We'll read texts ranging from those of the ancient Sufi, Navajo, Eskimo, and Egyptian parables to stories by Yasunari Kawabata, Jayne Anne Phillips, Raymond Carver, Lydia Davis, Jamaica Kincaid, Jorge Luis Borges, and Michael Ondaatje. The course will include writing exercises to motivate and encourage students to more fully ground themselves in the craft of the short-short story as well as experiment with his or her imagination in a form of writing open to innumerable approaches and merging paths. Students will explore the possibility of episodic writing in their own work without restrictions of genre jurisdiction. Though the short-short implies brevity in form & structure, students working on expansive short stories, plays, novels, or novellas will be encouraged to interweave the craft of episodic writing into their ongoing longer work. The goal of the course includes completion of a portfolio of work, and revised editions of texts for a class anthology, group reading, & party.

English 524: Poetry Writing Workshop
Professor Lewis Warsh
6:10 to 8:30 pm

Each student will initiate what might be a long poem of several pages or even a book-length poem. We'll discuss the ways of accumulating data by direct observation and journal writing, by reading the newspaper (which is a kind of daily poem), and by sustaining a rhythm, a feeling, a theme. We'll pay attention to ways of improvisation, how to translate daily life into poetry, and how to use repetition and variation. We'll use as models some of the great long poems of the last century, most notably "Paterson" by William Carlos Williams, and "The Skaters" by John Ashbery. Mostly we'll look closely at each other's work, give each other feedback and advice, and share each other's concerns regarding the importance of poetry in the world.

English 526: Writing Media I: The Story
Professor Claire Goodman (Department of Media Arts)
6:00 to 8:50 pm

This cross-listed course is an introduction to the methods and principles of great STORYTELLING in the media. It is the cornerstone course for all forms of story: commercials, sitcoms, movies, experimental shorts, even documentaries and photographic essays. In the first half of the semester, by means of screenings and discussion, students will learn to recognize and analyze basic story elements such as narrative structure, character, setting, plot, design, irony, and comedy. In the second half, in workshop-style classes, students will work on creating their own stories using these elements. Each student will develop their own movie-short screenplay and treatment as a final project. A professional screenwriter will be a guest speaker at one of the classes. Requirements: access to a computer, purchase of Final Draft writing software, and permission of instructor to take the course.

English 527: Introduction to Grant Writing
Professor Marilyn Zlotnik
6:10 to 8:30 pm

This course is designed to give students experience in the research, planning, and writing skills involved in preparing competitive grant proposals. The overall objective of the course is to provide students with an overview of the art and science of the grant writing process, including the style of technical language used. The course will provide opportunities for students to search out funding sources and fully develop all of the major components of a grant proposal that is responsive to funder requirements and priorities. Students will develop a grant proposal that will be reviewed by peers in class and by a panel of expert grant seekers. The course will include direct instruction, class discussions, small group sessions, Internet and field research, skill-building assignments, and presentations.

About the Instructor: Marilyn Zlotnik has been with Metis Associates, Inc., a New York City - headquartered research and consulting firm, since l994. Currently Ms. Zlotnik holds a dual appointment in the company, serving as the Director of Program Planning and Grants Development and as a Managing Senior Associate in the Division of Applied Research and Evaluation. Ms. Zlotnik spearheads internal proposal development activities to promote Metis' research and evaluation and information technology services and directs the development of competitive grant proposals for Metis clients, including public education agencies, institutions of higher education, and community-based organizations. Over the past ten years, these activities have resulted in grant awards in excess of $120 million to support the implementation of human services initiatives in a wide array of program areas and settings, both in New York City and across the country. In addition, Ms. Zlotnik has designed and conducted training and technical assistance sessions in the area of grantsmanship for over 15 years.

English 636: The Radical Decade--British Literature in the l930s
Professor Bernard Schweizer
6:10 to 8:00 pm

Through the lens of literature, this course will explore the dramatic developments of the l930s, as England (and much of the rest of the world) slithered from exuberance (the 'Roaring Twenties'), to depression (economic and otherwise), to total crisis (World War II). We will read a representative cross-section of l930s literature (poetry, travel writing, essay, short story, and novel) to study how the predominant cultural and political forces of the time--notably the rise of totalitarianism abroad, ideological polarization at home in England, the global economic slump, and the Spanish Civil War--impacted on the period's literary production. Some of the questions that will focus our reading are: How do British writers of the period engage their readers to take sides on vital political and social issues? What is the role of Modernism in this time of crisis? Do men and women interpret the thirties condition differently? And what is the relationship between politics and art anyway? At a time when the world was seemingly coming apart at the seams, and reality may have seemed as strange, if not stranger, than fiction, Britain's men and women grappled in fascinating ways with this difficult and yet stimulating condition. Texts: W.H. Auden, poems; Katherine Burdekin, Swastika Night (l937); Graham Greene, It's a Battlefield (1934); Storm Jameson, Company Parade(1934; George Orwell, The Road to Wigan Pier (l937); Evelyn Waugh, Vile Bodies (1930); Rebecca West, "The Abiding Vision" (1935); Virginia Woolf, Three Guineas (l938); and selections taken from Women's Poetry of the l930s.

English 641: Literacy & Basic Writing
Professor Xiao-Ming Li
6:10 to 8:00 pm

In this course, we will examine whom we teach and what we teach in basic writing courses, i.e. who are basic writers? And what is literacy? Based on the understanding of those two issues, we will discuss how to teach basic writers what we claim to teach. To answer the question of whom, we will read Shirley Brice Heath and Shondel Nero, whose studies of basic writers, the latter of students at LIU in particular, provide useful templates for our own ethnographic or case studies. For the question on literacy, we will read such influential educators as E.D. Hirsch, Paulo Freire, and Patricia Bizzell. To ponder the last question of how, we will examine models such as the Pittsburg model (Batholomae and Petrosky) and the Amherst model (Robert Varnum), and those described by Mina Shaughnessay and Geneva Smitherman in their well celebrated books. A Sourcebook for Basic Writing Teachers edited by Theresa Enos will be used as a companion book for all discussions.

Participants of the class will keep a reading journal to "think aloud" all reading assignments. Each will also engage in a semester-long project to study one of the three key issues proposed above. The project will culminate in a paper of 10-15 pages, which should 1) synthesize and evaluate the readings pertinent to the issue; 2) analyze one basic writer's written texts throughout the semester in the context of the writer's life experience; and 3) propose concrete methodology tailored to this particular basic writer.

English 646: Individual & Small Group Writing Instruction
Professor Mary Hallet
6:10 to 8:00 pm

In this course, students will examine the theory and practice of individual and small group writing instruction. We will examine a range of strategies for working with students one-on-one in tutoring, facilitating small group workshops in the writing classroom, and designing effective small group student/teacher conferences. We will locate our work within various theoretical and historical contexts. The course will focus on the following: structuring sessions and establishing priorities; assessing, diagnosing, and responding to student writing; eliciting generative critique among students; strategies for intervention, planning, drafting, revising, proofreading, and editing; helping students help each other with grammatical and mechanical concerns; working with ESL students; attending to interpersonal dynamics and cultural and ethnic differences in one-on-one and small group interactions.

Classes will be conducted as seminars/workshops so that all students have the opportunity to participate not only in class presentations, but also in small group conferencing and workshopping among themselves. Writing will include weekly responses to reading, and a final written project, based on topics of interest that arise during the semester. Possible texts (complete or selections from): Lindermann, A Rhetoric for Writing Teachers; Meyer and Smith, The Practical Tutor; Spielberg, Across Property Lines: Textual Ownership in Writing Groups; Flynn and King,Dynamics of the Writing Conference: Social and Cognitive Interactions.

English 649: Nineteenth Century British Horror Fiction
Professor Louis Parascandola
6:10 to 8:00 pm

This course will explore the growth of the gothic (horror) novel during the nineteenth century. This period saw the rapid development of the sciences and social sciences, which often legitimized (while at the same questioning) the prevailing Divine, social and political hierarchies. The works discussed in this course, including Frankenstein, Wuthering HeightsThe Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. HydeDracula, and The Island of Dr. Moreau, all examine the uneasy tension between rebellion and following the established order which marks the beginning of the modern sensibility.

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