Texts may include : Selections from Ovid’s Metamorphoses. Montaigne’s “Of practice.” Poems by, Charles Baudelaire, Stéphane Mallarmé, William Carlos Williams, W.H. Auden, and Rita Dove. John Keene’s “Acrobatique.” Molière’s flightless The Flying Doctor. Cyrano de Bergerac’s The States and Empires of the Moon. Euripides’ Medea. Angela Carter’s Nights at the Circus. Marie NDiaye’s Three Strong Women (Part III). Augustown by Kei Miller. Works by Pieter Bruegel, Edgar Degas, Christian Schad, Kiki Smith, Francesca Woodman, and Kara Walker.
Our fascination with flight has led to literary representations of heroic feats and tragic transformations. Humans sprouting wings, levitating, devising prosthetic machines, and turning into birds, are found in both canonical and popular texts. These characters are rescued, incite revolutions, terrorize humble people, deliver messages, and promise technological progress. In this course we will look at how flying characters are lauded and condemned, as well as the narratives, language, and gender politics used to bestow these evaluative claims. How does flight shift narrative perspective, function as a plot device, or help create genres? We will practice forming clear, concise, evidence-based arguments to interpret textual and visual media. This course will also introduce students to the university library, its collections and databases, and making arguments within a scholarly community.
French R1A fulfills the first half of the Reading and Composition Requirement in the College of Letters and Science. Class conducted in ENGLISH.