Department of English

Brenda Martinez


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Courses


E 314V • Women, Gender, Lit, Culture

34980 • Spring 2019
Meets TTH 11:00AM-12:30PM PAR 308
CDWr (also listed as WGS 301)

E 314V l  6-Women, Gender, Lit & Culture

 

Instructor:  Martinez, B

Semester:  Spring 2019

Unique #:  34980

Cross-lists: WGS 301.27

Restrictions:  n/a

Computer instruction:  No

 

Prerequisites: One of the following: E 303C (or 603A), RHE 306, 306Q, or T C 303C (or 603A).

 

Description: When Gloria Anzaldúa stated, “A woman who writes has power and a woman with power is feared,” she defined writing as a tool for political resistance.  In this course we will examine literary texts by and about women of color and the way literature attempts to expose deep political, economic, and social issues in American society with an emphasis on the intersections of gender, economic, and racial justice.  Since women’s and gender studies examines and critiques power, together we will learn to identify and challenge hierarchies within social institutions and explore the relationships between privilege, oppression, and resistance.  We will playwith stories that identify, interrogate, and rebel against gendered tropes in a variety of genres: poetry, essays, novels, comic books, music, and film.  Together we will explore how feminist critique can reveal the relationship between forms of oppression and resistance based on gender, race/ethnicity, class, ability, sexuality, and nationality.  In order to situate these works historically, materially, and culturally, we will read key figures within Black, Latina, Indigenous, Third-World, and Postcolonial/Decolonial feminism such as bell hooks, Joan Morgan, Patricia Hill Collins, Kimberlé Crenshaw, Angela Davis, Gloria Anzaldúa, Gayatri Spivak, Chandra Talpade Mohanty, Andrea Smith, Sarah Ahmed and more.  We will interrogate cultural, political, and economic issues facing women today including globalization, colonialism, war, and various forms of state violence.  Finally, students will be asked to engage in critical reflection as we wrestle with the underlying questions:  How do we write through traumatic and violent moments? How can we speak our truths?

 

The primary aim of this course is to help students develop and improve the critical reading, writing, and thinking skills needed for success in upper-division courses in English and other disciplines.  They will also gain practice in using the Oxford English Dictionary and other online research tools and print resources that support studies in the humanities. Students will learn basic information literacy skills and models for approaching literature with various historical, generic, and cultural contexts in mind.

 

This course contains a writing flag.  The writing assignments in this course are arranged procedurally with a focus on invention, development through instructor and peer feedback, and revision; they will comprise a major part of the final grade.

 

Tentative Texts: This Bridge Called My Back edited by Cherrie Moraga & Gloria Anzaldua (Selections) • Poetry: Mucha Mucha, Too Much Girl by Leticia Hernandez-Linares • Comic Book: Genius (Issues 1-5) • Visual Album: Lemonade (2016)

• Biopic: Selena (1997) Biopic

 

Requirements & Grading: There will be a series of 3 essays.  Essay 1 will be revised and resubmitted by arrangement with the Instructor; Essay 3 will have a mandatory proposal, annotated bibliography and rough draft before the final is submitted (70% of the final grade).  There will also be reading responses, a group presentation, homework assignments, and class participation grades (30% of the final grade).

E 314L • Banned Books And Novel Ideas

35085 • Fall 2018
Meets TTH 11:00AM-12:30PM GAR 0.120
Wr

E 314L  l  3-Banned Books and Novel Ideas

 

Instructor:  Martinez, B

Unique #:  35085

Semester:  Fall 2018

Cross-lists:  n/a

Restrictions:  n/a

Computer instruction:  No

 

Prerequisites:  One of the following: E 303C (or 603A), RHE 306, 306Q, or T C 303C (or 603A).

 

Description:  How often do you think about your right to read?  In this course we will be discussing, reading, and writing about the politics of banned books that have all been classified as transgressive and judged to be offensive by various constituencies.  We consider the works of literature that have threatened national governments, imagined dystopian futures, and violated community values.  We will learn how to study social problems in an interdisciplinary and dynamic manner.  This course will raise the following questions:  How has censorship been used as political tool? Who censors? Who is censored? What exactly is being “kept” from children and/or adults when particular texts are challenged or banned within school districts?

 

This seminar is invested in creating a student-centered learning environment through discussion and engaged interactive learning, which means that students are expected to be active participants in shaping the knowledge produced by the class.  Hence our community classroom will be an intimate space where students will share from their course journal to prompt student centered discussion.  Regardless of your future career goals or discipline this course will provide you with the tools and skills to think critically about the world, cultures and cultural products you will navigate while preparing you to articulate your thinking through written language.

 

The primary aim of this course is to help students develop and improve the critical reading, writing, and thinking skills needed for success in upper-division courses in English and other disciplines.  They will also gain practice in using the Oxford English Dictionary and other online research tools and print resources that support studies in the humanities.  Students will learn basic information literacy skills and models for approaching literature with various historical, generic, and cultural contexts in mind.

 

This course contains a writing flag.  The writing assignments in this course are arranged procedurally with a focus on invention, development through instructor and peer feedback, and revision; they will comprise a major part of the final grade.  Expect and plan to write regularly during the semester, complete substantial writing projects, and receive feedback to help you improve your writing.  You will also have the opportunity to revise one more assignments, and to read and discuss your peers’ work.

 

Tentative Texts:  The Kite Runner - Khaled Hosseini (including discussion of the film); The Handmaid’s Tale - Margaret Atwood (including discussion of TV Show); 1984 or Animal Farm – George Orwell; In the Time of the Butterflies - Julia Alvarez; The House on Mango Street - Sandra Cisneros; Beloved or The Bluest Eye - Toni Morrison.

 

Additional short stories, essays, and visual materials will be provided by the course instructor.

 

Requirements & Grading:  There will be a series of 3 short essays, one of which will be revised and resubmitted.  Subsequent essays may also be revised and resubmitted by arrangement with the Instructor. (25% of the final grade).

 

Essay 1, 15%; Essay 2, 15%; Essay 3 + Annotated Bibliography, 20%; Reading Responses in course journal, 10%; Presentations, 5%; Participation, 10%; Final (Revised) Paper, 25%.

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