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C LIT 240 A: Writing in Comparative Literature

The Literature of Discovery and Exploration

Meetings: 
MW 9:30am - 11:20am / MGH 242
F 9:30am - 10:20am / MGH 251
SLN: 
11775
Instructor:
Nicla Riverso-Levander

Syllabus Description:

The Literature of Discovery and Exploration

 In this course, we will investigate the Western narratives of the ‘discovery’ of unknown countries by reading a selection of travel narrative ranging from medieval times to the end of the 19th century. Our main goal is to examine travel writing as a literary genre and to analyze travel texts for their social, political, religious and cross-cultural implications. In examining narrative choices, writing styles and points of view and reflecting upon the social, religious and political pressures on them, we will gain a greater awareness of the ways in which individual travelers passed on knowledge of the world that they were discovering. Each text will be read in its uniqueness, but also in relation to the other texts as well as with respect to the historical context. We will also reflect upon and analyze a range of issues generated from their retelling of stories, their gathering of information and narrating experiences in order to detect problems of truth, and recognize real facts from fiction in a context where interest and curiosity about distant lands and people brought the idealization-- or the denigration-- of other cultures. 

Additional Details:

In this course, we will investigate the Western narratives of the ‘discovery’ of unknown countries by reading a selection of travel narrative ranging from medieval times to the end of the 19th century. Our main goal is to examine travel writing as a literary genre and to analyze travel texts for their social, political, religious and cross-cultural implications. In examining narrative choices, writing styles and points of view and reflecting upon the social, religious and political pressures on them, we will gain a greater awareness of the ways in which individual travelers passed on knowledge of the world that they were discovering. Each text will be read in its uniqueness, but also in relation to the other texts as well as with respect to the historical context. We will also reflect upon and analyze a range of issues generated from their retelling of stories, their gathering of information and narrating experiences in order to detect problems of truth, and recognize real facts from fiction in a context where interest and curiosity about distant lands and people brought the idealization-- or the denigration-- of other cultures. 

Catalog Description: 
Comparative approach to literature and a workshop in writing comparative papers in English. Emphasis on cross-cultural comparison of literary works. Readings in English with an option to read selected texts in the original languages Offered: AWSp.
GE Requirements Met: 
English Composition (C)
Writing (W)
Credits: 
5.0
Status: 
Active
Last updated: 
December 8, 2019 - 9:11pm
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