English 5321.252 Spring 2015
Professor Paul Cohen Office: FH358
Phone: 245-7685 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Office hours: M-Th 1:00-2:00 and by appointment
Course Web site: http://www.english.txstate.edu/cohen_p/postmodern/1.html
DESCRIPTION: This seminar will provide an introduction to some of the most extraordinary and exciting types of innovative fiction of the past fifty years.
Jorge Luis Borges: Labyrinths
Thomas Pynchon: The Crying of Lot 49
Vladimir Nabokov: Pale Fire
Italo Calvino: If on a winter's night a traveler
Lydia Davis: The Collected Stories of Lydia Davis
Tom McCarthy: Remainder
Georges Perec: Life a User's Manual
Much supplementary material will be available through an extensive course Web site.
REQUIREMENTS : You will write two papers on postmodern writing: a shorter one on an assigned topic, due on February 15, and one on a topic of your choice, due on April 19. You will submit the papers electronically. You will write a take-home Final Examination essay due on May 7. The first paper and the Exam will each count as 25% of your course grade, and the long paper will count as 50%.
TERMS AND NAMES
POSTMODERN LONG NOVELS
This schedule will definitely change as the course moves on. I will announce upcoming changes in class, and you will be responsible for knowing about them and coming to class prepared.
January 22: Modernism and Postmodernism
January 29: Theory
Susan Sontag: "Against Interpretation"
Jean Baudrillard: from Simulations
William Spanos: "The Detective and the Boundary: Some Notes on the Postmodern Literary Imagination" (JSTOR)
Brian McHale: from Postmodernist Fiction
February 5: Jorge Luis Borges
"Tlön, Uqbar, Orbis Tertius"
"The Garden of Forking Paths"
"Pierre Menard, Author of the Quixote”
“Funes the Memorious”
“The Secret Miracle”
"Partial Magic in the Quixote"
“Kafka and His Precursors”
February 12: Vladimir Nabokov: Pale Fire
February 19: Lydia Davis
"Mr. Burdoff's Visit to Germany"
"Cockroaches in Autumn"
"French Lesson I: Le Meurtre"
"The Center of the Story"
"Almost No Memory"
February 26: Thomas Pynchon: The Crying of Lot 49
March 5: Lydia Davis
" The Outing"
"A Mown Lawn"
"Certain Knowledge fropm Herodotus"
"Samuel Johnson Is Indignant"
"First Grade: Handwriting Practice"
"Letter to a Funeral Parlor"
March 12: Italo Calvino: If on a winter’s night a traveler
March 26: Georges Perec: Life a User's Manual
April 2: Georges Perec: Life a User's Manual
April 9: Lydia Davis
"Murder in Bohemia"
"Oral History (with Hiccups)"
"Jane and the Cane"
"Southward Bound, reads Worstward Ho"
"Mother's Reaction to My Travel Plans"
April 16: Postmodern poetry, art. music, and film
April 23: Tom McCarthy: Remainder
April 23: Tom McCarthy: Remainder and conclusions
May 7: Final Examination due at 10:30 pm
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