Books for the Course
There will be an online packet of essays available in Blackboard. In addition to those readings, we will be discussing readings from the following books and novels. Click image links below to purchase new or used books online. (Make sure your browser ad-blocker is turned off.)
As a culminating experience for senior English majors, this seminar-style course provides students an opportunity to reflect on their college literary studies; to deepen their understanding of literature, its role in the pursuit of truth, and its place in their lives; and to apply what they have learned as majors in completing a substantial project. This project will focus on a significant work, author, or literary topic and should reflect thorough research, thoughtful analysis, and clear communication. The course subject matter varies each semester to reflect the interests and expertise of the professor.
You have spent several years studying English literature and/or English Education. Why did you do that? What does it all mean? What will you do with it after graduation? How will your literary studies impact your personal and professional lives? This capstone seminar provides you an opportunity to reflect upon these and other questions and to examine more deeply what English literary studies means to you. We will be studying, reflecting, engaging, and commenting on literary studies as an academic discipline by exploring in greater depth contemporary literary criticism.
Our goal is to come to a richer understanding of English studies as a field of cultural inquiry, as a methodology for discovering truth, and as a lifelong endeavor to ask and explore the deeper, fundamental questions of existence: What does it mean to be human? What does it mean to be human in relation to other human beings in a global context? What is human flourishing, and how can we collaborate with others to seek universal human flourishing? Additionally, we will be exploring the relationship between literary studies and your career aspirations (graduate school, teaching, publishing, writing, or some other related occupation), through a comprehensive capstone project that will be developed in scaffolded stages over the course of the semester.