ENGL311 (Section 001, Schedule #42062)
Virginia Commonwealth University
Spring 2021
MW 2pm-3:15pm :: MPC Academic Learning Commons 1102 (in Blackboard & on Zoom until further notice)
Prof. David Golumbia
Office: 333 Hibbs Hall
Spring 2021 Office Hours: by appointment, over Zoom

Linguistics and Literary Theory

Literature is made out of language, especially written language, so there are many strong connections between the theoretical questions raised by the study of literature and those raised by the study of language. This class explores some of those connections. We will cover topics such as the relationship between written language and spoken language; the incorporation of spoken language into written texts (such as the use of dialogue in novels); poststructuralist questions about the nature of language; the question of “style” in writing; the historical relationship between the study of language and the study of literature; the idea of “literary” writing; the question of interpretation in the production and reception of language; and the use of linguistics concepts in the practice of literary criticism. Evaluation will be via short written assignments and vigorous participation in discussion. Some familiarity with literary theory and/or linguistics will be useful but is not required.

Modality: mixture of synchronous Zoom-based lecture/discussion and text-based discussion, lecture, and reading notes. Most of the discussion and reading notes for the class will be done in Blackboard forums.

Texts (you are welcome to purchase the texts, but it is not required and PDFs of the selections we will read are available in Blackboard)

Assignments and Evaluation

Official VCU Policy Statements

Week-by-Week Syllabus

Week One.

Week Two.

Week Three.

Week Four.

Week Five.

Week Six.

Week Seven.

Week Eight.

Week Nine.

Week Ten.

Week Eleven.

Week Twelve.

Week Thirteen.

Week Fourteen.

Week Fifteen.

Last updated  April 11, 2021.