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English Department
Wendell Phillips Center 151
Cynthia Dobbs
Department Chair
3601 Pacific Ave.
Stockton, CA 95211


(This list of courses may not be up to date. Please see the latest General Catalog for a complete list of current courses.)

ENGL 025. English 25 (4) English 025 provides an introduction to the discipline of English studies. Students are expected to write about and discuss various topics that arise in the study of literary works. Prerequisites: a passing score on the General Education writing skills examination or WRIT 021. Multiple and varied sections are listed by thematic focus title each semester.

ENGL 031. Aesthetics of Film (4) An introduction to the principles of artistic expressiveness of films; lighting, color, camera, composition, space, movement, image, setting and sound. Attention is also given to narrative techniques and editing styles. Explores such theories as realism, formalism, surrealism, Marxism, psychoanalysis and gender theory. Both American and foreign films are viewed and discussed.

ENGL 041. British Literature before 1800 (4) A study of major authors, works and traditions from Beowulf through the Pearl Poet, Chaucer, Spenser, Shakespeare, Donne, Milton, Dryden, Pope, Swift and others, to Johnson. Balanced concern for particular works, for historical continuity, for distinctive features of movements and periods such as the Renaissance and the Augustan period, and for the expanding definition of English literature.

ENGL 043. British Literature after 1800 (4) Begins with Blake and ends with Pinter, and includes such authors as Wordsworth, Byron, Keats, Tennyson, Browning and Hardy, Yeats, Thomas, Joyce, Eliot, Lawrence, and Lessing. The approach is historical, with a focus on the distinctive qualities of the Romantic, Victorian, Modern and Contemporary traditions. Connects with ENGL 041, but that course is not a prerequisite.

ENGL 051. American Literature before 1865 (4) A survey of principal American writers through the middle of the 19th century, including poetry, prose and at least one longer work of prose. Writers that may be treated include Hawthorne, Poe, Melville, Douglass, Stowe, Bradstreet, Jefferson and Dickinson. Emphasis will be placed on the thought, aesthetics, and cultural impact of these and other writers.

ENGL 053. American Literature after 1865 (4) The second half of the American literature survey, beginning with the Realists (writers such as James, Twain, Crane and Chopin) and moving into the 20th century with such authors as H.D., Pound, Stevens, Eliot, Frost, Hemingway, Cummings, Faulkner, Williams and Hughes. Contemporary writers will include O’Hara, Ginsberg, O’Connor, Snyder, Morrison, Li-Young Lee, and Alice Walker.

ENGL 063. Masterpieces of World Literature (4) This course explains selections from the western canon as well as other world cultures, with emphasis on the linkages of the great literary traditions; geographic, national, mythic/archetypal, generic, and thematic. The literary texts will be read through various critical prisms, exploring philosophical, political, psychological, and ethnic contexts. The sweep of the course will move across time and place. Some examples would include the study of classics with the Medieval and Early Modern. Readings in modern and contemporary writing will show how these texts have been influenced by the long heritage of world literature, significant for understanding current globalization, and both the unity and diversity of the human community.

ENGL 082. How English Works (4) Studies the nature, use, and workings of English as a modern language. Considers word-formation (morphology), and phrase and clause structure (syntax) in relation to meaning (semantics), use (pragmatics), stylistics, and communication (discourse theory). Addresses significant issues such as standardization, dialects, language acquisitions, etc. The course is intended for prospective teachers, writers, lawyers, and other professionals who work with language.

ENGL 087/187. Internship (2-4/2-4) Supervised experience in an off-campus work setting drawing on skills particular to English studies, such as writing, editing, analyzing of texts, etc. Internships are limited to the number of placements available. ENGL 187 represents advanced internship work involving increased independence and responsibility.

ENGL 093. Special Topics (4)

ENGL 101. Integrative Tutorial (1) Integrative Tutorial (1 unit/semester, with the expectation that a student will take it at least three and as many as six consecutive semesters). Designed to help students draw their studies together, the integrative tutorial is a form of independent study in which a faculty member helps a student see the connections between courses she/he has taken to fill in gaps that would otherwise go unaddressed in course work. Prerequisite: permission of the instructor.

ENGL 105. Technical Writing (4) Study of the process of preparing the documents most frequently used in professional settings: memos, letters, instructions, proposals, and reports. While the emphasis is on professional writing in science and engineering fields, the principles apply to other fields as well. Prerequisite: Junior Standing.

ENGL 107. Writing Non-Fiction (4) An upper-division seminar in the writing of non-fiction prose, emphasizing such familiar forms as the essay, biography, autobiography, professional and academic articles and free-lance writing. These and other sub-genres of non-fiction will be the focus for this collaborative, seminar-style course intended for apprentice writers interested in polishing and publishing their work.

ENGL 109. Professional Communications (4) Advanced practical writing course on how to produce clear, concise, and persuasive documents for a variety of readers and in a variety of contexts. Proofreading and revision skills are emphasized, and assignments cover the most commonly used forms in professional writing, such as letters, memos, and proposals. Course includes one service learning project, which gives students the opportunity to apply their skills outside of the classroom.

ENGL 111. Creative Writing: Fiction and Drama (4) Emphasizes steady, productive writing of stories and plays. Practical advice is offered in fictional and dramatic techniques, and in ways to improve writing, especially through revision. Student manuscripts are submitted regularly for response and verbal-written criticism by peers and by instructor in a workshop setting.

ENGL 113. Creative Writing: Poetry (4) For students who want to write poetry and need the discipline and guidance of a class. Focuses on careful analyses of poems submitted by students, interspersed with poems written by published poets. The goals: to find one’s unique voice, to enlarge one’s skills and visions, to encourage discipline and editing.

ENGL 115. Screenwriting (4) In this comprehensive course, students study the art and craft of short subject and feature film screenwriting, including, but not limited to: theme, plot, story, structure, characterization, format, and dialogue via writing, lecture, discussion, close analysis, and instructor-peer critique. Time will be spent not only on idea generation and visual storytelling, but on how to meaningfully connect with the audience. Students will be required to write: two short film treatments (one original and one adaptation), a short film script, a detailed feature film treatment, and the first 10+ pages of a feature film screenplay.

ENGL 117. Film Production (4) Students are introduced to the fundamental principles of motion picture production, emphasizing visual storytelling and auditory communication through demonstration, hands-on production and critical analysis. Students produce short films in small crews. Some equipment and materials are provided by the school, but approximately $300 should be budgeted for miscellaneous expenses and lab fees.

ENGL 121. Major Filmmakers (4) Focus is on the work of such major directors as Coppola, Fassbinder, Scorses, Fellini, Kubrick, Bergman, Hitchcock, Antonioni, Losey, Bertolucci and Truffaut. The course also considers major schools of cinema: French New Wave, Italian Neo-Realism, New German Cinema and narrative genres such as the psychological thriller, chamber film and epic. Emphasis is placed on critical analysis and interpretation of the individual director’s styles and themes.

ENGL 123. Film, Literature, and the Arts (4) Investigates the theory, practice and critical methods underlying aesthetic form in the arts, including film, literature, painting and sculpture. Corollary illustrations are drawn from music and architecture. This comparative course attempts to examine the underlying styles and structures among the arts.

ENGL 124. Film History (4) Comprehensive look at the history of cinema, from its beginnings in Europe and America, through the emergence of national cinematic traditions and the classical period tied to the Hollywood studio system, and concluding with current transnational developments. Screening and analysis of significant American and international films.

ENGL 125. Critical Colloquium (4) A study of the theory and practice of the major modes of interpreting and criticizing literature, including but not limited to formalist, psychoanalytic, structuralistic, gender and feminist and deconstructionist in representative perspectives offered by designated English Department members and guest lecturers.

ENGL 126. Literature and the Environment (4) This class will examine how literature reflects, represents, and constructs the “nature” of Nature both in scientific and cultural terms. In a time when the “dying planet” is foremost in our consciousness, we will look at literary texts that have idealized, demonized, engaged debate, or projected assumptions about the role of such topics as the wilderness and the frontier, the garden and the jungle, the desert and the city. We will consider the role of animals as creatures with whom we share the planet: how they play a psychological and philosophical function in our literary heritage. The course may focus on many topics: the role of memory and landscape, the Pastoral and Paradise; the ethical and legal constructions of Nature; Romanticism and its discontents; how poetry, the novel, memoir, and travel writing have shaped our understanding of the natural world and the built environment. We will consider the role of science, technology and the Post Human and Virtual Nature as modes of writing, research and thinking that reflect the emergent field of Ecocriticism.

ENGL 127. Contemporary Critical Issues (4) Examines major aspects of literary theory from structuralism to post-structuralism. Focuses on the interplay between and among such movements as deconstruction, post-colonialism, the new historicism, phenomenology and psychoanalysis. The course also discusses how contemporary theory has impacted such topics as gender, canon, reader-response and post-modernism.

ENGL 128. Science and Literature (4) This class will bridge the gap between the study of literature and the study of science as we explore the intersections between these two within the realm of human culture that they both share. We will explore how the practice of science is represented (or misrepresented) in literature and culture. We will study the effects that culture and literature have on science, on scientific revolutions and the acceptance of new theories. We will also examine how the practice of science can be understood as “literary”. Our readings will come from scientists like Newton and Darwin, from literary artists like Jonathan Swift and Connie Willis, and from the theorists that study the practice of science.

ENGL 130. Chaucer and His Age (4) Focuses on Chaucer as the central figure of the medieval period, with in-depth study of The Canterbury Tales, The Book of the Duchess, The House of Fame, The Parliament of Fowls, and Chaucer’s romance, Troilus and Criseyde. Introduces students to historical and cultural frameworks for the medieval world.

ENGL 131. Shakespeare (4) Eight to ten of Shakespeare’s plays, studied from a variety of critical perspectives, such as the historical, psychological, philosophical, formalist, cultural and theatrical approaches. Selections from each major genre (comedy, tragedy, history). Specific plays vary from term to term; the reading list may include such works as Twelfth Night, The Tempest, King Lear, Macbeth, Richard II, Henry IV (Parts One and Two) and Henry VIII.

ENGL 133. Major British Authors (4) Advanced, in-depth analysis of an individual author (or pair of authors). Topics likely to be covered include the range of the author’s work, cultural context, significant literary influences, impact on other authors, and major scholarship written about the author. Students will conduct directed research. By semester the course varies to focus on authors such as Chaucer, Milton, Austen, G. Eliot, Hardy, Forster, Joyce, Woolf, and Murdoch/Byatt. May be repeated once for credit with a different focus.

ENGL 134. Jane Austen (4) This course allows students to see how a young girl writing stories for her family transforms into one of the best loved novelists of all time. Discussion covers her published novels, letters, and previously unpublished childhood stories. In addition, we’ll consider why certain writers become “ageless” figures who remain alive and well in popular culture by viewing film versions of her novels and creative adaptations like Clueless and Bridget Jones’s Diary. Responsibilities include quizzes, papers, and a major project, to be shared at the end-of-semester “Jane Austen Night” on campus.

ENGL 135. Major American Authors (4) Advanced, in-depth analysis of an individual author (or pair of authors) including aesthetic qualities of the work throughout the author’s career, historical and cultural contexts shaping the work, literary influences on the author’s writing and thought, influence on other writers, and major scholarship about the work. Students will conduct directed research. By semester the focus of the course changes to include authors such as Twain, Dickinson & Whitman, Ellison & Wright, Faulkner & Morrison, Frost & Stevens, Kingston & Tan, Melville, Steinbeck & Dos Passos. May be repeated once for credit with a different focus.

ENGL 141. Topics in British Literature Pre-1800 (4) Study of a single literary period designed to strengthen students’ critical reading and writing skills as well as examine questions of literary themes, cultural and intellectual context, national identity, ethnicity, class, and/or gender. Students will conduct directed research. Topics vary with titles such as The Age of Beowulf, The Medieval Mind, English Renaissance, Women Writers before Austen, and The Age of Unreason: 18th Century Literature. May be repeated once for credit with a different focus.

ENGL 143. Topics in British Literature After 1800 (4) Study of key literary movements, genre and aesthetic developments, historical and social contexts, and thematic concentrations from Romanticism to the Victorian Age to Modernism and the Post World War II era. Students will conduct directed research. Topics change. Representative titles include the Victorian Novel, British Lyric poetry, and Modern and Contemporary British Literature. May be repeated once for credit with a different focus.

ENGL 151. Topics in American Literature before 1865 (4) Study of significant literary periods or movements in America before 1865. Topics change while the course examines the signature features of a specific period or movement: its aesthetic and thematic concerns, as well as the political, economic, intellectual, and cultural contexts shaping and shaped by the literature in question. Possible titles include The American Renaissance, The Birth of the American Short Story, Early American Humor, The Politics of Home Life, and Slavery and The American Imagination. May be repeated once for credit with a different focus.

ENGL 153. Topics in American Literature After 1865 (4) In-depth analysis of significant literary periods or movements in America after 1865. Topics change while the course examines the signature features of a specific period or movement: its aesthetic and thematic concerns, as well as the political, economic, intellectual, and cultural contexts shaping and shaped by the literature in question. Possible titles include American Realism, American Modernism, Modern American Novel, American Nature Writing, Literature of the American South, Literature of California, Contemporary American Fiction, and Contemporary American Poetry. May be repeated once for credit with a different focus.

ENGL 161. Topics in American Ethnic Literature (4) Studies of contributors to American Literature within the context of their shared ethnicity. Topics change. Possible offerings include American Immigrant Literature, African-American Poetry, Black Women Writers, Blues, Jazz and Literature, and Chicano/a Literature. May be repeated once for credit with a different focus.

ENGL 163. Topics in Transnational Literatures (4) Comparative analysis of literature from two or more national traditions, including works from several historical periods or a single period, with an emphasis on genre, style, cultural milieus, and critical affinities between texts. Topics change. Possible offerings include Masterpieces of World Literature, Romanticisms, International Modernism, Postcolonial Literature, Literature and Film of the Pacific Rim, and Modernist Poetry. May be repeated once for credit with a different focus.

ENGL 164. WAR (4) This course allows students to consider the various ways writers and filmmakers struggle to describe the indescribable—war. How does war affect the men and women who fight it, and those left behind? Who decides what the difference is between revolution and treason, between freedom fighters and terrorists? How can war provide us with the means to show our greatest strengths and capacity for self-sacrifice—yet also make us, somehow, less than human? Assignments include papers and in-class presentations.

ENGL 166. Literature and the Law (4) Fictional texts are read against legal texts in the hope that they will be mutually illuminating and that they will enhance our understanding of law and justice. The course will provide you with everything you need to know as a lay person about the American legal system and contribute to your civic education. Justice is analyzed with respect to evidence, criminal intent, mitigating circumstances, punishment, oral performance of the lawyers, witnesses, prosecutors, etc. The course encourages students to identify and construct logical and strong arguments, an asset no matter what profession they choose.

ENGL 182. History of the English Language (4) Studies the development and change of English language from the beginnings to the present day. Supports students’ understanding of the language through historical and cultural analysis. Considers English phonology and orthography in connection with the study of texts in historical (Old, Middle, and Modern English) and regional English. Expands on the poetics and stylistics begun in English 82, and give special attention to the history of the book. Intended for English majors and others who will use linguistic knowledge in the analysis and production of texts.

ENGL 191. Independent Study (2-4) Student-initiated projects involving subjects not addressed by current course offerings. In consultation with a faculty director, the student shall submit in writing a proposal which defines the specific subject matter, the goals, the means of accomplishing the goals and the grounds for evaluating the student’s work. The proposal must receive the approval of the director of the project prior to registration, and responsibility for fulfilling the terms of the proposal lies with the student.

ENGL 193. Special Topics (4) Additional courses not covered by regular offerings.

ENGL 197. Undergraduate Research (2-4) Provides opportunity for qualified students to complete a supervised original research project. Students are encouraged to travel to collections and use unique materials and resources in developing an original paper or other public presentation of their findings.