Fall 2016: Majors Course Descriptions

English 130: Introduction to Literary Studies for English Majors and Minors

Dr. Matthew Cella | MWR 9:00 - 9:50 AND MWF 10:00 - 10:50

This course will introduce you to the various methods for analyzing and interpreting literature in order to improve your proficiency as a literary scholar and English Major or Minor. Our readings will cover the three main literary genres (fiction, poetry, and drama) and will be drawn from a wide range of time periods and cultural backgrounds. Through critical thinking, writing, and active discussion, we will dissect these works of literary art using the tools and approaches most commonly employed within the field of literary studies. With a broad background in the practices and principles that characterize literary study, students will learn to read literature both more closely and more deeply. Requirements included regular reading quizzes, unit exams on each of the three genres, and three short analytical papers (also addressing each of the three genres).

English 213: Writing and Research about Literature

Dr. Laurie Cella | MWF 10:00-10:50

Students will write and workshop several critically informed research papers involving both primary and secondary texts and using standard methodologies in the discipline. Students learn to access authoritative critical, cultural, and/or historical sources using specialized research tools, and learn to apply diverse critical perspectives to at least three different genres. Course work includes reading and writing assignments that develop writing skills and original, critically informed analyses. Students should expect to write at least three documented papers. Prerequisite: ENG 130

This semester's focus: Blonde Ambition. In this course, you will build on the research and writing skills you learned in ENG 130. We will examine our chosen texts from the lens of race, class and gender. We will examine the implication of whiteness and white privilege with the image of the blonde in American literature. We will read: Sherman Alexie's poetry, Anita Loos's Gentlemen Prefer Blondes, and Loraine Hansberry's Raisin in the Sun. We will also read literacy criticism to become familiar with the various critical approaches available to literary scholars. Requirements include: weekly posting on D2L, an annotated bibliography, one short essay and one longer researched essay.

ENG 224 - Introduction to Creative Writing

Dr. Kim van Alkemade | MW 5:00-6:15 pm and TR 6:30-7:45 pm

Introduction to Creative Writing introduces elements of creative writing in a variety of genres, providing practice analyzing short stories, creative nonfiction pieces, poems and/or dramatic scenes from the point of view of a creative writer. In a series of creative assignments, students will learn to use the tools of creative writing—such as scene, dialog, imagery and description—to explore and improve their own creative writing. Students will write a series of short summary/analysis responses to reading assignments. Students will complete a series of short explorations of creative writing, with a culminating assignment of an expanded and revised creative work in a process portfolio. This course satisfies the requirement for a course in Writing.

English 234: American Literature II

Dr. Michael Bibby | MW 2:00 - 3:15

English 236: British Literature I

Dr. Shari Horner | TR 11:00-12:15

English 238: Technical/Professional Writing I

Dr. Laurie Cella | TR 9:30-10:45

The primary goal for this course to give you the skills you need to solve rhetorical problems in your professional career. Technical Writing is not an in-depth study of one particular field, but rather an increased awareness of audience and concise response to a particular problem. In this class, you will be asked to think critically, examine many possible solutions, and then choose the best response to the given situation. For each assignment, I will provide the particulars, and we will work together to develop an effective rhetorical solution. However, as the semester progresses, you will be asked to solve these problem more independently. By the end of the semester, you will feel more comfortable solving these workplace dilemmas on your own. I want you to be ready to work on your own, since most on the job projects will ask you to solve these problems without the support of the classroom or a professor. We will be using Mike Marcel's textbook, Technical Communication, 11th ed.

By the end of this course, you will be able to:

* create documents that adhere to the eight measures of technical writing excellence

* incorporate graphic design elements effectively into your documents

* collaborate effectively within a small group to identify and solve rhetorical problems

* create a professional career portfolio, including a concise resume and cover letter

* identify and address ethical dilemmas on the job, and respond thoughtfully

* create and deliver a professional oral presentation based on your research

English 240: Global Literature

Introduction to Modern World Dramatic Literature—Realism and After
Dr. Tom Crochunis | TR 2:00 - 3:15

In this course, we will read plays first performed in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, focusing on realism’s emergence as a strategy in Western drama, on varied ways of adapting realistic dramaturgy in relationship to other cultural traditions, and on the intellectual and cultural sources that lead dramatists to extend beyond realism. Students in the class need not begin the course with an extensive background in reading drama. Plays read for the course will include works by European, Asian, African, and North and South American writers that either define or serve to extend the strategies of theatrical realism. We will engage with the course’s plays through careful reading, viewing, discussion, writing, and in some cases performing or theatrically envisioning scenes. Major course assignments will include two short (4-6 page) papers engaging with individual plays and their critical reception, regular short in-class writing assignments, and one longer comparative study and presentation that connects a play read for the course to other plays that preceded or followed it.

English 243: Art of the Film

Dr. Michael Pressler | M 12:00-12:50, W 12:00-1:50, F 12:00-12:50

Education 290: Introduction to English Language Arts Education

Dr. Tom Crochunis | MW 2:00-3:15

As the first of three English pedagogy courses, Introduction to English Language Arts Education invites students interested in teaching English to begin their intellectual and professional journey. Through the course’s readings, discussions, activities, and assignments, you will learn terminology and concepts associated with English teaching in secondary schools and gain hands-on experience with devising assignments, developing lesson plans, and leading activities in class. The course will involve field experiences in secondary school English classrooms that will provide real-world examples of the ideas discussed in class. Additionally, the course will ask you to read professional literature and reflect on your assumptions about teaching English and on the kinds of dispositions that a teacher needs to develop to serve students well. This course is a prerequisite for ENG-426: Teaching Adolescent Literature and EDU-422: Teaching English in the Secondary Schools.

Because this course serves as an introduction to English teaching, students in the writing or literature degree programs who are interested in learning more about teaching are welcome. Taking this course might be a way to find out whether further courses in teaching English would be of interest. The course can count as an elective for students in those programs.

English 307: Poetry Writing

Dr. Nicole Santalucia | MW 3:30-4:45

English 308: Fiction Writing

Prof. Neil Connelly | MWF 11:00 - 11:50

During the first half of the semester, students will be introduced to key concepts of narrative through lectures, readings, and sometimes unusual exercises. All of this will lead toward the creation of an original literary short story. The second half of the semester is dedicated to workshopping these pieces, with each student having a day dedicated to his/her fiction. No prerequisite save the desire to write compelling stories.

English 330: Shakespeare

TBA | TR 5-6:15

English 349: Victorian Literature

Dr. Catherine Dibello | MWF 1:00-1:50

This section of ENG 349 will focus on Victorian British fiction with secret-based plots and/or perverse characters. Reflecting the anxieties and the seamy underside of Victorian life, these works alarmed and titillated the Victorian public and continue to fascinate today's readers. This student-centered course will emphasize discussion and oral reports. Written assignments include an analytical paper, an annotated bibliography, and a final essay exam. Victorian Literature counts in the new curriculum's History and Movements category. Texts include Bronte's Jane Eyre, Dickens's Great Expectations, Braddon's Lady Audley's Secret, Collins's The Woman in White, Stevenson's The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, and Wilde's The Picture of Dorian Gray.

English 358: Ethnic Literature

Dr. Ray Janifer| TR 12:30-1:45

Introduces literature by members of culturally diverse groups including but not limited to African, Hispanic, Asian and Native Americans. Representative authors include John Edgar Wideman, Ha Jin, Junot Diaz, Toni Morrison, Sherman Alexie, Richard Rodriguez and Octavia Butler. Expect to write at least one analytic paper dealing with works read in the course. This paper may be broken up into two shorter papers on two separate works. This semester I plan to focus on the multicultural voice of ethnically diverse authors and their sense of identity, time, and place. A partial reading list includes:

Ha Jin-Under the Red Flag

Toni Morrison- Song of Solomon

Octavia Butler- Parable of the Sower

Huraki Murakami- Dance, Dance, Dance

Junot Diaz- The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao

English 359: Native American Literature

Dr. Erica Galioto | TR 9:30-10:45

In 2012, Louise Erdrich won the National Book Award for her fourteenth novel, The Round House. Like her other fictional works, The Round House compelling reveals a difficult point of contact between a Native American reservation and the larger American society it intersects. The story includes unspeakable violence, mourning of loss, meditation on kinship, reflection of tribal spirituality, adolescent coming-of-age, and a web of characters that extends into her other novels.

In this course, we will enter Erdrich’s fictional world at its inception in 1984 with Love Medicine and meet the complex characters whose families’ futures intertwine over a hundred years through her subsequent novels. We will consider a range of critical and theoretical sources as we analyze Erdrich’s presentation of issues such as ethnic identity and cultural survival, gender and sexuality, orality and textuality, literary and cultural tradition, memory and identity, spirituality and religion, and reader response and identification. On our journey from Love Medicine to The Round House, we will read a selection of Erdrich’s other novels and contemplate her status as the most prolific and widely-read American Indian writer today.

English 360: Popular Genres

Dr. Sharon Harrow | MW 2:00-3:15

English 360: Popular Genres ~ Detective fiction

This course will introduce you to mystery/ detective fiction, which is and always has been a widely and wildly popular literary genre, extending back to the birth of the novel, when the Newgate Calendar; or Malefactor’s Bloody Register, was as popular as were novels and the Bible. There are multiple schools of detective fiction, including: the Golden Age, the Hardboiled, the Police Procedural, and many more. Stories of crime, mysteries, or transgression of social norms often reveal writers’ concerns and questions about their society. For example, what is the nature of not just CRIME, but of KNOWLEDGE itself? What enables or blocks attempts to discover TRUTHS about the world? In the face of corruption and VICE, how do people seek JUSTICE? We will consider multiple perspectives, asking how class, gender, race, geography, politics, culture, etc. impact the mystery genre. We will also consider why the mystery genre is a useful vehicle for unraveling questions about self and society. What makes something mysterious? What is in need of resolution? Who creates/ solves problems? We will also read from the body of scholarship that has investigated generic conventions and the cultural work of the genre.

In order to understand the significant literary, social, and philosophical questions that underline this “pulp” genre, we will examine novels and stories by writers that might include: Edgar Allan Poe, Arthur Conan Doyle, Agatha Christie, Dashiell Hammett, Raymond Chandler, Dorothy Sayers, and Walter Mosley.

Possible assignments include: close reading/ critical analysis, a research paper, and several other mysteriously fun assignments. This class will hone your skills in critical thinking, analysis, and literary interpretation.

By the end of this course, the pleasures of reading and writing will no longer be a mystery to you!

English 366: History and Structure of the English Language

Dr. Shannon Mortimore-Smith | MWF 11:00-11:50

In her book, Grammar to Enrich and Enhance Writing, Connie Weaver writes: “The teaching of grammar should be positive, productive, and practical. Grammar is more than correctness, and the teaching of grammar should emphasize and open up possibilities for expression.” According to Weaver, “Students should be able to see grammar as a way to strengthen writing, and as something that has immediate and clear implications for writing in real genres, for real purposes, and for real audiences.” As such, this class is less concerned with issues of “correctness” or “perfection” and more concerned with the possibilities that effective rhetorical and grammatical choices can provide for thoughtful, skilled writers. In addition, while you will certainly learn a great deal about grammatical concepts and theories as a student in this course, our focus will be on how these theories are applied to your own writing and in your future classrooms, not on the isolated study (or “skill and drill”) of these concepts alone.

Students in the course will:

  • Demonstrate an understanding of the history of the English language and how it influences written and verbal communication today
  • Identify current issues concerning the study of grammar, grammar instruction, and language and literacy acquisition
  • Implement positive, productive, and practical strategies for using and teaching grammar effectively
  • Acquire the conventions of standard written English within the context of authentic reading, writing, and critical thinking experiences
  • Analyze and address the patterns of error in student writing and offer skilled and thoughtful diagnostics
  • Identify and utilize “mentor texts” that model effective grammatical constructs to students
  • Develop innovative lesson plans and intervention strategies that demonstrate the power of the written word
  • Experience a renewed joy for playing with words and language

English 368: Studies in Fiction

Dr. William Harris | TR 11:00-12:15

Provides focused, in-depth study of fiction’s fundamental components, such as plot, character, and narrative point of view. Featured topics could include the rise of the novel, the Bildungsroman, or magic realism. Expanding on the basic fundamentals of fiction analysis taught in ENG 130, this course further develops students’ analytical skills and extends their awareness of critical approaches to fiction. Students should expect to write at least one analytical paper. Prerequisite: ENG 130.


Sin. Lust. Greed. Redemption. Moral ambiguity. Innocence vs. corruption, freedom vs. fate, &—sometimes—the sheer pleasure of being bad. These are just some of key ideas in film noir, one of the most popular genres in the history of cinema. The hard-boiled crime & suspense novels that many noir films were based on are now regarded as American literary classics. And yet film noir—a category of film associated with a wave of films that emerged in the early 1940s­—is defined by more than just such themes & sources. It’s also characterized by a particular visual style and narrative structure that reflect the social, political and cinematic context of the period. This semester we will study a variety of noir films & the classic novels on which most of them were based in order to consider noir’s literary roots, its cinematic antecedents, its status as a genre, its rebirth as neo-noir (from the 1970s to the present), & its enduring appeal. Questions about genre, visual style, narrative form, sexuality, gender, & American national identity will inform readings and discussions.

Films & novels may include The Maltese Falcon, Double Indemnity, The Big Sleep, Out of the Past, Kiss Me Deadly, The Grifters, They Shoot Horses, Don’t They?, The Long Goodbye, & Chinatown. Additional readings will help us understand the history of film noir production & analysis. Prepare for stylish banter, witty dialogue, stunning visuals, & memorable stories & characters!

Assignments may include shorter analysis papers, weekly discussion activities, & a research/argument paper.

For students in the NEW English curriculum, this semester the course will count for the GENRE requirement. For student under the OLD curriculum, it will count for the POST-1800 requirement.

Education 422: Methods of Teaching English in Secondary Schools

Dr. Erica Galioto | TR: 8-9:15 AM

This “Methods” course is a practicum in English/Language Arts instruction for secondary certification English majors in the semester before student teaching. Our primary concern will be the joining of theory about teaching and learning with the practical methods of implementing such theory in a secondary classroom. In our weekly readings and discussions, we will explore the theoretical foundations of different learning styles, composing practices, teaching models, ranges of critical thought, and education philosophies, to name a few. Extending beyond abstract analysis, we will then move these theories into their practical applications, as we use them to inform and challenge our own classroom practices. Each class will include a practical workshop component; we will often focus on planning lessons, sequencing assignments, constructing assessments, and differentiating the classroom. Drawing on our varied experiences as both teachers and students, we will develop teaching strategies, activities, and assignments that will address the diverse learners in our secondary classrooms. The students in this practicum will begin to form personal pedagogies that are situated in the larger field of English education, but are also very much rooted in their own classroom practices. Expect to leave this course equipped with a practical portfolio, philosophy of teaching statement, and an understanding of how to put theory into practice. EDU-290: Introduction to English/Language Arts Education and ENG-426: Teaching Adolescent Literature are pre-requisites for this course.

English 428: Advanced Fiction Workshop

Prof. Neil Connelly I MWF 12:00 - 12:50

Open only to those who have successfully completed English 308, this course opens with a series of directed writing prompts but moves swiftly to workshop, when each student contributes his/her own fiction for the class's consideration. The class concludes with a week long discussion of publishing.

English 438: Technical/Professional Writing II

Dr. Carla Kungl | TR 8:00-9:15

TEXT: Markel, Mike. Technical Communication. 11th ed. Boston: Bedford/St. Martins, 2015.

This seminar is a hands-on, full steam ahead exploration of technical writing in the workplace. As such, we will not only explore some of the theoretical issues raised in professional communication-- writing for various audiences, understanding persuasive strategies, and exploring ethical dilemmas-- but we will also work on improving the practical elements of our writing. We'll work on improving clarity and coherence, understanding more thoroughly how purpose and audience affect our work, and develop greater skill in document design. We will also re-address many of the skills and assignments learned in English 238: memos, letters, status reports, oral presentations, research assignments, and resumes. In addition, we will stretch our computer literacy, creating a full-length design proposal and website using desktop publishing and website creation software.

Reflecting actual workplace strategies, much of the work we do will be collaborative, with each group member actively creating and contributing to the larger semester-long project. Your team's major projects for the course will be to write a proposal to research a topic related in some way the Shippensburg community, accompanied by individual websites. The project will include a detailed work plan, status report and completion report. The class is an elective in the Technical/Professional Communications minor and is not offered very often. If you are interested, don't wait till next time! Pre-requisite: ENG 238 (Technical Writing I).

English 460: Senior Seminar

Dr. Rich Zumkhawala-Cook | TR 11:00-12:15 (this seminar counts as a course in criticism)

Global Culture

In this age of globalization and the expansion of transnational markets new links between global citizens have dramatically shaped how we interact and see ourselves in the world. Common institutions and organizations have drawn geographically and culturally distant landscapes together into what looks like a single society of shared culture and consciousness. Many have argued that globalization promises the expansion of liberty and individual choice, while others have noted the destruction of local customs and the dependence of marginal societies on the economic whims of Western capitalist profit. This course will look at a variety of contemporary theoretical and imaginative texts (novels and films) that attempt to describe and explain the complex processes of globalization and the ways that it contributes to—or is affected by—transnational movements of peoples, knowledge, customs, identities and values. We will examine the effects of these phenomena on social conditions and economies, and the ways that citizens have struggled to culturally define themselves, their traditions, and their communities as new members of the “global village.” We will also pay attention to the conventions of narrative and language that represent and reconstruct the intimate structures of globalization.

Seminar students will be responsible for class discussion and leadership, weekly writing, a presentation, a short essay and a 12-15 page research analysis.

Possible texts will include:

Naomi Klein, No Logo.

Eduardo Galeano, Upside Down

Barbara Ehrenreich, Global Woman

Margaret Atwood, Oryx and Crake

Mohsin Hamid, Moth Smoke

Kwame Appiah, Cosmopolitanism

Thomas Friedman, Hot, Flat, and Crowded

Vandana Shiva, Earth Democracy

Benjamin Barber, Jihad vs. McWorld

Jamaica Kincaid, A Small Place.

Chris Abani, Grace Land

Amitava Kumar, A Foreigner Carrying in the Crook of His Arm a Tiny Bomb

Mario Vargas Llosa, The Storyteller

Current Happenings 

Thursday, October 20, 2016:  Susan Perabo, Writer-in-Residence at Dickinson University, will give a reading from her work in Old Main Chapel, 6:30 p.m.   

This event is free and open to the public!