Mar 31, 2023  
Catalogue 2022-2023 
Catalogue 2022-2023 [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

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ENGL 228 - African American Literature

Semester Offered: Spring
1 unit(s)
(Same as AFRS 228  and DRAM 228 )  Topic for 2022/23b: Black Modernism: On Ghosts, Mystics, And Prophets. Can writing be black? Is that a good or bad thing? What makes it so? Can it be both black and modern? Is blackness something artists need to leave behind en route to their arrival as modernists? Or instead, does blackness necessitate that artists be modern in a way different from other (non-black) artists? This course ranges from the social protest fiction of the 1940s through the Black Arts Movement to the postmodernist experiments of contemporary African American writers. In giving our attention to the aforementioned questions, we cover the debates that have informed African American literary production, particularly the tension that has historically existed between the aesthetic and the political imperatives that inform the art. Be aware that being distinguished as “modern” is not the only temporal marker that these writers and their fictions share. Our readings this term also invoke the idea of the past (signaled by the presence of ghosts and mystics) as well as that of the future (signaled by the presence of mystics and prophets). We explore through these writers why time travel—both backward and forward—is a prominent narrative feature in black fiction.  Tyrone Simpson.

This course satisfies the REGS requirement for the English major.

Two 75-minute periods.

Course Format: CLS

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