What are words for? Linguistics and Style in Literature
As readers, we often look for meaning in texts by studying aspects like plot and character. In this course, we will study how writers use linguistic resources to create meaning. Our exploration will draw on the field of linguistics and on the literary study of stylistics. By making the language itself our focus, we will consider three major elements in the construction of texts: sound, form, and words. How is spoken language portrayed on the page? How do structure and pattern create meaning? How does vocabulary contribute to the world of the text?
Students will complement close readings with secondary research in order to write cogent analyses of literary texts. In this course, we are interested not only in written representations of language, but also in the oral codes of film, television, and music. The works that we will examine include a selection of short poetry, the novels So Long a Letter by Mariama Bâ, The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett, and the play The Bald Soprano by Eugène Ionesco.
These readings and discussions will feed into the composition of several analytical papers over the course of the semester, along with other writing exercises designed to develop critical thinking, research, composition, editing, and presentation skills.
French R1B satisfies the second half of the Reading and Composition Requirement. Classes are conducted in ENGLISH