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Department of English

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Topics Courses Winter 2020

Slavery considered Black people things instead of people. How did enslaved authors fight against this kind of representation? How do contemporary North American authors revise these earlier ways of representing slavery? We will begin by close reading short stories about slavery and race. Then we’ll compare two famous nineteenth-century slave narratives, Harriet Jacobs’ Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl and Frederick Douglass’ Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglassand ask how gender affects the experience of the enslaved. We’ll end by considering how Toni Morrison’s masterpiece Beloved rewrites these earlier representations, developing our own contribution to the critical conversation around Beloved.

This course will introduce students to literary studies and the methods it uses. Through close reading, critical writing and rewriting, and thoughtful discussion about specific texts, students will develop the practical skills necessary to succeed as a University English major.

This course asks us to trace connections between key issues in Canadian and U.S. Law & Policy (i.e. Truth and Reconciliation, Residential/Boarding Schools, Indian Removal, MMIW, Oil and Mineral Rights, etc.) and the literatures/textual productions produced by FNMI/Native authors. As a community, this class will explore issues, policies, histories, and laws within Indigenous literature/text on Turtle Island (North America). This course engages in dialogues addressing policy and law and its relationship to creative production highlighting Indigenous survivals, resistance, struggles, and sovereignty within popular culture (speculative fiction, comics, film, music, genre literature, and poetry) from across the U.S. and Canada.

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Karen Preddy
403.220.5470
karen.preddy@ucalgary.ca

Associate Head (Undergraduate Student Affairs)

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Dr. Jason Wiens
403.220.5470
adveng@ucalgary.ca

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