Courses

English Collage

English Literature

ENGL109Introduction to Literary Theory and Research Methods This course will introduce critical schools and theoretical frameworks for prospective and declared English majors. It will focus on one literary text (or a limited set of literary texts) as a focus of analysis in order to understand literary studies within a historicized field of development. Students will read and research critical analyses of this text and the theories that underpin them. Possible theoretical perspectives include: New Historicism, Deconstructionism, Reader-Response, Feminist, Sexuality, Psychoanalytic, Critical Race, Postcolonial, Marxist. This course is a requirement for all English majors (and a prerequisite for all 300-level courses). By the end of the term, students will complete a curricular design, a document that will articulate their path through their major. This course fulfills a Foundations requirement.
ENGL150Reading the World: Beyond Realism An introductory study of works that go beyond realism, including attention to their cultural and social contexts. Focus areas may include fantasy or speculative fiction. All Reading the World courses stress the development of critical writing ability, critical thinking, and active discussion. This course fulfills a Foundations requirement.
ENGL151Reading the World: Environments An introductory study of literary and cultural texts that articulate how human beings are connected to the natural world. The course will explore how locations and ecosystems shape and are shaped by human systems of meaning. Topics may include gardens, sustainable worlds, urban environments, and deep ecology, among others. All Reading the World courses stress the development of critical writing ability, critical thinking, and active discussion. This course fulfills a Foundations requirement.
ENGL152Reading the World: Genre Media Literacy and the 2020 Elections This course explores representations of the world through the lens of genre. Just as human understanding emerges from historical and cultural positions, so too does the choice of literary genres (fictional and nonfictional narratives, drama, and poetry) shape meaning. This class will focus on a genre (or a pairing of genres) as a way to examine how aesthetic and historically-rooted dimensions of literary forms give rise to representations of the world. All Reading the World courses stress the development of critical writing ability, critical thinking, and active discussion. This course fulfills a Foundations requirement.
ENGL153Reading the World: Classical Hollywood in Global Context An introduction to the language of cinema, foregrounding historical and theoretical contexts of classical Hollywood cinema (1930-1945) and various aesthetic alternatives from around the world. Requires a weekly film screening outside of class. All Reading the World courses stress the development of critical writing ability, critical thinking, and active discussion. This course fulfills a Foundations requirement.
ENGL154Reading the World: Global Stages This course explores the cultural work done by done theater. As a genre that encourages coming together to see live theater, drama speaks to societies about themselves in the place and time they inhabit. This course uses a thematic focus (gender, The American Dream, Identities, etc.) based on the offerings of local university and community theater. This course fulfills a Foundations requirement.
ENGL155Reading the World: Identities This course explores literary and cultural texts addressing the nature of human identity and its development, particularly through issues of difference. Focus may be on one or more of the following: race, class, gender, nationality, sexuality, the body. All Reading the World courses stress the development of critical writing ability, critical thinking, and active discussion. This course fulfills a Foundations requirement.
ENGL156Reading the World: Social Justice This course examines social justice from a literary perspective, focusing on a particular issue, event, movement, or historical moment. It will emphasize areas of power difference, such as race and ethnicity, disability/ability, class, gender, and sexuality. All Reading the World courses stress the development of critical writing ability, critical thinking, and active discussion. This course fulfills a Foundations requirement.
ENGL200Craft Apprenticeship Students majoring in English may participate in intensive workshops, internships and other forms of apprenticeship that provide opportunities to deepen knowledge and skills within various craft sequences in the major (Literary Criticism and Theory, Film Criticism and Theory, Poetry, Fiction or Nonfiction Prose, and Journalism). To be considered for this partial-unit credit, a student must approach (and collaborate with) a faculty member to develop a proposal of the expected work and learning goals in the craft apprenticeship. A written reflection and/or other form of supervised writing at the internship or apprenticeship site will be required. A minimum of 10 hours of work per week (over the course of 2-4 weeks) is expected. Enrollment is by permission of the instructor and department only. Credit: .20 units.
ENGL205Feature Writing This course builds upon the fundamental writing and reporting skills and techniques introduced in ENGL 105. It introduces students to the process of creating feature stories, in the tradition of narrative or literary journalism, for print and online publications. This class will consist of regular writing workshops, intense self- and peer-editing, reading, and discussion. This course counts toward the Journalism craft sequence.Prerequisite: Take ENGL-105
ENGL207Arts Journalism This course explores the nature of arts, entertainment, and cultural criticism. Its purpose is to help students develop critical skills and express their views creatively, convincingly, and in a way that will engage a popular print or online reader. Students will also learn how to review specific works of art or popular culture, how to critically profile a major artist or popular celebrity, as well as write a broader piece of criticism that looks at larger artistic or cultural issues. This course does not count toward the Journalism craft sequence but will enrich your journalism background.
ENGL/SEMN208Food and Travel Writing Through reading, writing, and studying various media in the realm of journalism and creative nonfiction, we will explore identity, history, and culture-our own, and that of others- through food and place, and artfully write and workshop nonfiction writing about lived experience. This Shared Passages Sophomore Seminar includes faculty-led travel to Costa Rica the first week of winter break, wherein we will actively apply theory through hands-on experience. A passport and additional fees for travel will be required, though need-based financial assistance will be available to make the trip accessible for all students.Prerequisite: Sophomores only
ENGL/SEMN217World Indigenous Literatures: The People and the Land A selective study of the literary traditions and contemporary texts of indigenous peoples around the world, focusing on indigenous communities in regions where Kalamazoo College students study and with a particular emphasis on texts that explore the complex relationships between indigenous communities and the land they claim as their own. This course is a Shared Passages Sophomore Seminar. For the Historical and Cultural Breadth requirement, this course fulfills the minoritarian, diasporic, or transnational requirement.Prerequisite: Sophomores only.
ENGL/SEMN219Magical Realism Magical realism is a genre that combines elements of the fantastic with realism often in order to imagine utopias or resist restrictive aspects of society. This course will examine the genre, interrogate its relationship to other genres of fantasy, and consider the relationship between the aesthetic patterns of the genre and its potential for social advocacy. This course is a Shared Passages Sophomore Seminar. For the Historical and Cultural Breadth requirement, this course counts as a 20th- or 21st-century course, or it fulfills the minoritarian, diasporic or transnational requirement.Prerequisite: Sophomores only
ENGL220African American Literature A study of central writers, works, and eras in African American literature with an emphasis upon how they engage in an improvisational conversation across periods and movements. For the Historical and Cultural Breadth requirement, this course counts as a 20th- or 21st-century course, or it fulfills the minoritarian, diasporic, or transnational requirement.
ENGL221African Literature This course will reflect on modern literatures in English from Africa. We will take a multi-genre approach, reading short stories, magic realist novels, and political tracts and reflect on the problems of diaspora in modern postcolonial states, the economic impact of colonial and neo-colonial practices, the policies responsible for dispossession, the use of English as an African language, and the rhetorical and political strategies used to combat forms of oppression. For the Historical and Cultural Breadth requirement, this course counts as 20th- or 21st-century course, or it fulfills the minoritarian, diasporic, or transnational requirement.Prerequisite: A Reading the World course or instructor permission.
ENGL222American Indian Literatures A selective study of the literary traditions and contemporary texts of American Indian people with a focus on building an interdisciplinary understanding of cultural production. For the Historical and Cultural Breadth requirement, this course counts as 20th- or 21st-century course, or it fulfills the minoritarian, diasporic, or transnational requirement.Prerequisite: A Reading the World course or instructor permission.
ENGL/SEMN227(Un)making the British Empire This course will investigate the expansion of the British empire in the nineteenth century and the forms of indigenous resistance that grew in response to it. Texts will be drawn from across Britain's colonial holdings. Throughout, we will examine British imperial and settler colonial ideologies in ways that center indigenous perspectives and voices. This course will be especially useful for those studying abroad in India, Australia, Botswana, or Thailand. This course is a Shared Passages Sophomore seminar. For the Historical and Cultural Breadth requirement, this course counts as a 19th-Century course, or it fulfills the minoritarian, diasporic or transnational requirement.Prerequisite: Sophomores Only
ENGL230US Ethnic Literature A study of American literary texts primarily of the 20th and 21st centuries, from the perspective of their ethnic origins. For the Historical and Cultural Breadth requirement, this course counts as a 20th- and 21st-Century course, or it fulfills the minoritarian, diasporic, or transnational requirement. Prerequisite: A Reading the World course or instructor permission.
ENGL244Studies in 20th-Century Literature An examination of radical departures from conventional technique in the most innovative modern poetry, fiction, and drama. For the Historical and Cultural Breadth requirement, this course counts as a 20th- and 21st-Century course.Prerequisite: A Reading the World course or instructor permission
ENGL245Electronic, Hypertext, and Multimedia Literature A study of digital and print literatures that emerge from computing and internet technologies, with a particular emphasis on the medium through which they are produced and rendered. Forms include CD-ROM, cybertext, hyperlink, mobile apps, and GPS/satellite synchronized. Through these forms, this course will explore how digital culture impacts textuality and challenges reading practices. For the Historical and Cultural Breadth requirement, this course counts as a 20th- and 21st-Century course.Prerequisite: A Reading the World course or instructor permission.
ENGL246Modernism to Millennium: British Literature 1900-PRESENT A study of the literary culture of Britain and Ireland during this period through its literature. The course will highlight the aesthetic innovations that took place over the course of the twentieth century and examine their intersection with their historical context, including imperialism and decolonization, the World Wars, immigration and shifts in ethnic identity, class politics, and challenges to gender and sexual norms. For the Historical and Cultural Breadth requirement, this course counts as a 20th- or 21st-Century course.Prerequisite: A Reading the World course or instructor permission.
ENGL260Studies in Film This course enables an in-depth study of genre, national/regional cinema, or aesthetic movement. Topics vary by year. For the Historical and Cultural Breadth requirement, this course counts as a 20th- and 21st-Century course. This course counts toward the Film Criticism and Theory craft sequence.Prerequisite: ENGL-153 or Instructor Permission
ENGL/SEMN264Global Shakespeares Shakespeare is the most translated, adapted, performed, and published Western author. Just what this means to Western and non-Western cultures is at the heart of this course. Many cultures have written back to Shakespeare, addressing race, sexuality, gender, and religion from their own cultural perspectives. What do exchanges between differently empowered cultures produce and reproduce? We'll tackle such questions as we read works by Shakespeare and literary/film adaptations from around the globe. This course is a Shared Passages Sophomore Seminar. For the Historical and Cultural Breadth requirement, this course fulfills the minoritarian, diasporic, or transnational requirement.Prerequisite: Sophomores Only
ENGL265Shakespeare A study of Shakespeare's histories, comedies, and tragedies. Historical context, various critical perspectives, close textual explication, and analysis of film versions will be subjects for discussion. For the Historical and Cultural Breadth requirement, this course counts as a Pre-19th-Century course.Prerequisite: A Reading the World course or instructor permission.
ENGL266Discoveries: British Literature 1550 -1750 A study of British literature emerging during the Renaissance/early modern period. This course will pair literary analysis with investigations of the artistic, political, religious, and social developments of the period, setting the literature amidst the various discoveries of the period. For the Historical and Cultural Breadth requirement, this course counts as a Pre-19th-Century course.Prerequisite: A Reading the World course or instructor permission.
ENGL268The Victorians: British Literature 1832-1900 A study of British culture of the period through its literature, with emphasis on novels, poetry, and nonfiction. The course focuses on several defining themes of this tumultuous age: imperialism and racism, industrialism and its discontents, the Women Question, Darwin and the crisis of faith. For the Historical and Cultural Breadth requirement, this course counts as a 19th-Century course.Prerequisite: A Reading the World course or instructor permission.
ENGL/AMST269New World Narratives: American Literature 1500-1790 A study of the different tales emerging from those indigenous to or settling "America." Texts include American Indian creation myths, European exploration narratives, Puritan poetry, captivity and slave narratives, and late 18th-century fiction and nonfiction. For the Historical and Cultural Breadth requirement, this course counts as a Pre-19th-Century course.Prerequisite: A Reading the World course or instructor permission.
ENGL/AMST270Reform and Renaissance US Literature U.S. Literature 1790-1865 A study of literature emerging during a period of significant cultural upheavals: the unsettling of indigenous populations, the movement of European populations westward, and the Slavery and Woman questions. Through an exploration of diverse texts, students will examine a literature shaped by an impulse to transform or reform pre-existing perspectives and genres. For the Historical and Cultural Breadth requirement, this course counts as a 19th-Century course.Prerequisite: A Reading the World course or instructor permission.
ENGL/AMST275American Realisms: U.S. Literature 1865-1914 This course examines a variety of approaches to knowing a literary period. We will explore theoretical, socio-historical, formal, and thematic paradigms that can organize our understanding of the wide variety of written and cinematic texts produced in the period between the end of the Civil War and the beginning of World War I. Through a study of the frequently conflicting stories about gender, race, sexuality, art, and Americanness that come to voice during this period, students will challenge and complicate their definitions of literary realism. For the Historical and Cultural Breadth requirement, this course counts as a 19th-Century course.Prerequisite: A Reading the World course or instructor permission.
ENGL/AMST276Modernism and Postmodernism: U.S. Literature 1914 - Present A study of the rise of a modern aesthetic in the wake of World War I and the postmodern response in the second half of the 20th century with an eye toward the diversity of voices and formal choices that mark this period. For the Historical and Cultural Breadth requirement, this course counts as a 20th- or 21st-Century course.Prerequisite: A Reading the World course or instructor permission.
ENGL285Writing Pedagogy This course will introduce students to fundamentals of writing pedagogy and teach them strategies for helping writers with diverse backgrounds and learning styles strengthen their writing skills.
ENGL310Constructing Blackness In this course, we will examine the social construction of race and how race and racial identities are consciously, and subconsciously or un-consciously, represented in literature, film, popular culture, and socio-cultural phenomena. As such, we will use Critical Race Theory as a lens to read and to analyze texts--historical, literary, filmic, and cultural--that specifically address the socio-historical construct of Black racial representation. This course fulfills the Applied Theory requirement for the Literary Criticism and Theory craft sequence. For the Historical and Cultural Breadth requirement, this course counts as a 20th- or 21st-Century course, or it fulfills the minoritarian, diasporic, or transnational requirement.Prerequisite: ENGL-109, CES-200, CES-240, or CES-260, or instructor permission.
ENGL318Post-Colonial Literature This course will investigate some of the central issues in the field of post-colonial literature and theory, such as how literature written in the colonial era represented the colonized and impacted those who were depicted and how writers and readers deployed literature as a method of exploring new possibilities of identity. This course fulfills the Applied Theory requirement for the Literary Criticism and Theory craft sequence. For the Historical and Cultural Breadth requirement, this course counts as a 20th- or 21st-Century course, or it fulfills the minoritarian, diasporic, or transnational requirement.Prerequisite: ENGL-109 CES-200, CES-240, or CES-260 or instructor permission.
ENGL323Chicana/O/X Literature A selective study of Chicana/o/x literary and cultural texts. Possible emphases could include colonialism and conquest, indigenismo, geopolitical conflict or "the Borderlands," identity formations and identifications, and/or sociocultural resistances. This course fulfills the Applied Theory requirement for the Literary Criticism and Theory craft sequence. For the Historical and Cultural Breadth requirement, this course counts as a 20th- or 21st-Century course, or it fulfills the minoritarian, diasporic, or transnational requirement.Prerequisite: Take one of the following: ENGL-109, CES-200, CES-240, CES-260, or WGS-101; or instructor permission.
ENGL324Early Modern Women's Literature: Shakespeare's Sisters A study of the women writers that Virginia Woolf termed "Shakespeare's Sisters" when she (we now know mistakenly) lamented the lack of early women writers. We'll study these, primarily British, women writers of the period, emphasizing the social, political, economic, and cultural conditions of women's authorship before the nineteenth century. This course fulfills the Applied Theory requirement for the Literary Criticism and Theory craft sequence. For the Historical and Cultural Breadth requirement, this course counts as a Pre-19th-Century course.Prerequisite: ENGL-109 or WGS-101 or instructor permission.
ENGL32519th-Century Women's Literature: The Epic Age A study of British and U.S. women writers of the period, emphasizing social, political, economic, and cultural conditions for women's authorship as well as recurring concerns and themes of women authors and the emergence of African American women's writing. This course fulfills the Applied Theory requirement for the Literary Criticism and Theory craft sequence. For the Historical and Cultural Breadth requirement, this course counts as a 19th-Century course.Prerequisite: ENGL-109 or WGS-101 or instructor permission.
ENGL326Women's Literature 1900 - Present: Modern Voices A study of women's writing in English in the 20th and 21st centuries, emphasizing cultural diversity, thematic commonalities, and questions of voice and gender. This course fulfills the Applied Theory requirement for the Literary Criticism and Theory craft sequence. For the Historical and Cultural Breadth requirement, this course counts as a 20th- or 21st-Century course.Prerequisite: ENGL-109 or WGS-101 or instructor permission.
ENGL331East Asian Diasporic Literatures This course will analyze literature written in English by people in the East Asian Diaspora. This includes writers from China, Korea and Japan and their descendants living in the U.S., Great Britain, Canada, Australia, the Caribbean, and Latin America. The course takes a transnational approach in considering questions around racial and ethnic identity, global capitalism, nationality and citizenship, as well as issues of gender and sexuality. This course fulfills the Applied Theory requirement for the Literary Criticism and Theory craft sequence. For the Historical and Cultural Breadth requirement, this course counts as a 20th- or 21st-Century course and it fulfills the minoritarian, diasporic, or transnational requirement.Prerequisite: ENGL-109; or CES-200, CES-240, or CES-260; or instructor permission.
ENGL434Advanced Film Theory: Cinema & Spectator This upper-level course introduces students to significant movements in film theory, including feminism, structuralism/poststructuralism, transnationalism, cultural studies, formalism, and psychoanalysis, via a reflection on the experience of spectatorship. We will reflect upon film's relationship to material reality, the cultural impact of the medium, the history and diversity of audience response, and the roles of gender, race, and sexual interpretation on spectatorship. We will consider how the filmgoer is situated by the medium as a recipient of a film's message and how s/he has historically been an active and critical presence who challenges and transforms the text. We will take a theoretical as well as a historical approach to these questions, thinking not only of films and filmmakers but also of the experiences of movie-going publics. We will approach film theory with an eye to its history, to the ways in which film theories dialogue with each other, and how cinema instantiates film theory. This is the required capstone course for the Film Criticism and Theory craft sequence.Prerequisite: ENGL-153 or Instructor Permission; ENGL-260 recommended.
ENGL436Advanced Topics in Literary Theory An intensive study of selected perspectives in contemporary critical theory. This is the required capstone course for the Literary Criticism and Theory craft sequence.Prerequisite: Junior standing.
ENGL485Advanced Writing Pedagogy This course will allow students who have successfully completed Writing Pedagogy to deepen their experience and understanding through the exploration of specific topics related to the teaching of writing.Prerequisite: Previously take Writing Pedagogy
ENGL490Advanced Literary Studies Seminars focusing on major figures and movements in English and American literature. May be repeated for credit when content changes. Ask the professor teaching it for a specific course description. This course fulfills the Advanced Literary Studies requirement. This course is a disciplinary senior seminar and fulfills the Shared Passages Senior Seminar.Prerequisite: Junior standing.
ENGL/SEMN491Building the Archive: Baldwin & His Lega Baldwin & His Legacy In November of 1960, James Baldwin delivered an address, "In Search of a Majority," at Stetson Chapel which was later published in his book Nobody Knows My Name. This seminar will approach this visit (and Baldwin's work) as a site of analysis. As an actual event, the occasion left artifacts (publicity, newspaper accounts, published essay). It also can be read within the legacy of other Civil Rights era visitors to the college, including Charles V. Hamilton (co-author of Black Power: The Politics of Liberation). Moreover, as a writer who addressed national and international identity, racial politics (personal and cultural), and sexuality, Baldwin's writings remain relevant. Through close attention to Baldwin and his milieu, this course will invite students to bring their own experiences and disciplinary knowledge to the reading, writing, and archival research. We will consider an archive of oral histories from those in the community who participated in or were influenced by the civil rights movement. This is a Shared Passages Senior Seminar and fulfills the Advanced Literary Study requirement.Prerequisite: Seniors only.
ENGL492American Indian Literature and Law "American Indian Literature and the Law" is an interdisciplinary examination of the relationship between literary and legal texts that uses Critical Race Theory as a lens. Our goal is to uncover and analyze the complicated relationship between United States law and the creative productions of Indigenous nations of North America. At heart, this senior seminar asks us to reflect deeply on the power of storytelling and the relationship between "the text" and "the world." Our course is thus necessarily interdisciplinary, and we will conduct research on government documents relating to Indigenous peoples in addition to researching literary and cultural criticism on our texts, using these skills to develop final projects that reflect the interests of each student. This is a Shared Passages Senior Seminar and fulfills the Advanced Literary Study requirement.
ENGL593Senior Integrated Project Each program or department sets its own requirements for Senior Integrated Projects done in that department, including the range of acceptable projects, the required background of students doing projects, the format of the SIP, and the expected scope and depth of projects. See the Kalamazoo Curriculum -> Senior Integrated Project section of the Academic Catalog for more details.Prerequisite: Permission of department and SIP supervisor required.

English Writing

ENGL105Introduction to Journalism: Newswriting Principles and Techniques This course introduces students to the basic reporting and writing skills essential to creating "hard news" stories for print and online publications. In this class, students will write and re-write regularly to master key types of news stories. This course fulfills a Foundations requirement.
ENGL107Introduction to Creative Writing An introduction to the process of writing both poetry and prose, pairing the study of published work with the workshopping and development of student writing. This course fulfills a Foundations requirement.
ENGL210Intermediate Poetry Workshop A workshop in which students practice and study poetic craft and both traditional and untraditional form by reading model texts and sharing their work. This course counts toward the Poetry craft sequence.Prerequisite: ENGL-107 and Sophomore Standing
ENGL211Intermediate Fiction Workshop A workshop in which students study and practice the elements of short fiction by reading model texts and sharing their own work. This course counts toward the Fiction craft sequence.Prerequisite: ENGL-107 and Sophomore Standing
ENGL215Creative Nonfiction Workshop A workshop that offers model texts and writing assignments that explore the possibilities of this hybrid form in which its practitioners look both inward and outward, drawing on the traditions and techniques of poetry, fiction, journalism, and critical writing to tell true stories. This course counts toward the Nonfiction craft sequence.Prerequisite: ENGL-107 and Sophomore Standing
ENGL437Advanced Poetry Workshop A workshop which enables students to develop and complete an independent writing project. Includes deeper discussion of poetic craft and form. This course is the required capstone course for the Poetry craft sequence.Prerequisite: ENGL-210 and Junior standing
ENGL438Advanced Fiction Workshop A workshop which enables students to develop and complete an independent writing project in fiction. Includes a discussion of longer forms (the novella and novel) as well as short stories. This course is the required capstone for the Fiction craft sequence.Prerequisite: ENGL-211 and Junior standing
ENGL439Advanced Nonfiction Workshop This course is the capstone workshop for both the journalism and creative nonfiction tracks in the English Department and allows student to develop and complete an independent writing project in nonfiction writing. Includes discussion of book-length works of literary nonfiction that seeks to find intersections between creative nonfiction and narrative journalism. This course is the required capstone for the Nonfiction and Journalism craft sequences.Prerequisite: ENGL-205 or ENGL-215, and Junior standing.