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Deptarment of English graphic

Upper Division Courses Fall 2006

Please note: descriptions have not been submitted for all Upper Division English courses that will be offered in Fall 2006. Please check the online course listing for the full roster along with information on class days/times.

Course Titles

English 3302 - Business and Technical Report Writing

English 3302 - Business and Technical Report Writing

English 3307 - Shakespeare

English 3309 - Creative Writing

English 3312 - Studies in Fiction: The Modern British Novel

English 3313 - Studies in Dramatic Literature

English 3315 - British Science Fiction

English 3316 - History of Rhetoric

English 3323/Humanities 3323 – Technology and Literature

English 3333 - Writing for the Mass Media

English 3340 - Cultural Criticis

English 4306 - Science Writing

English 4314 - Major Authors: Richard Wright & James Baldwin

English 4323 - Feature Writing for Business and Industry

English 4330 - Humanities Seminar - Christmas in America: The Holiday and the Controversy

English 4360 - Publications Workshop

English 5317 - Theory of Rhetoric

English 6323 - Communications and Technology

Course Descriptions

ENG 3302 - Business and Technical Report Writing
Wayne Schmadeka

Study and practice writing the types of documents frequently used in the workplace, including cover letters and resumes, proposals, progress reports, formal reports, and Power Point presentations.

Learn to develop documentation to identify, study, and document real worldsolutions for the real world challenges students face in their work and personal lives.

Probable major assignments

  • Propose a formal report
  • Write a progress report
  • Write a formal report

Recent examples of formal reports include:

  • Recommending construction of a pedestrian walkway from, an off-campus, parking lot to the UHD campus
  • Evaluating whether it is better for the student to remodel her existing home or build a new home
  • Soliciting funds from the Gates Foundation for an HIV prevention program in provincial China
  • Recommending upgrading HISD Police vehicles with state-of-the-art communications equipment

ENG 3302- Business and Technical Report Writing

Dr. Karina Stokes

This class will be conducted as much like a professional workplace as possible. Students will learn the value of attending virtual meetings to discover what the supervisor expects on the next assignment. Each reading and writing assignment is designed to add a new skill to students’ repertoires. First, students will learn basic concepts of communication and review the basics of grammar. A “how-to” for using Word to format documents will be included in the class. Then, students will gain an understanding of audience analysis, subject focus, document planning, and revision as they analyze a target audience for a job application. The next lessons covered will teach students how to create visually appealing documents students will create a resume and cover letter with appropriate layout as well as readable, clear text. Writing instructions for a workplace will be the focus of one assignment. All of the skills developed to this point will then be combined with the fine art of collaboration. Researching appropriate sources, gathering information, and creating graphics will follow the culmination of this knowledge will be shown in a clearly written proposal and two reports. In small groups of three, students will develop a proposal to study and solve some problem faced by university / college students. Individually written progress reports will update the instructor on each group’s work. Finally, student groups will create a formal feasibility report on the results of their research, interviewing, and/or experimenting. By the end of the class, students will have mastered the basic professional writing skills of finding and documenting information, planning and organizing documents for a specific purpose and audience, and producing lucid text in a visually pleasing layout with appropriate graphic elements.

ENG 3307 - Shakespeare
Jon Harned
MW 10:00 - 11:15

This introductory course in Shakespeare will confront obstacles that often prevent contemporary readers from enjoying and interpreting his plays. Since Shakespeare’s Elizabethan English is initially troublesome to understand today, the official textbook for the course will be The Norton Shakespeare, which offers state-of-the-art glosses on vocabulary, obscure passages, and historical allusions, but students may choose to buy instead editions of individual plays from the No Fear Shakespeare series, each of which provides a modern, facing-page translation. The Norton Shakespeare will be available in the bookstore the No Fear Shakespeare editions of the plays may be purchased from local or online booksellers. A further difficulty for modern readers is to understand Renaissance ideas about the cosmos, religion, politics, family structure, gender roles, social class, race, and literary genres such as tragedy and pastoral romance. Through oral reports on background sources and contemporary criticism, we will study historical, cultural, and literary contexts that would have been familiar to Shakespeare’s audience. These intellectual frameworks, as we will see, do not provide anything like a definitive reading of Shakespeare but rather open doors for responsible, creative interpretation, criticism that is responsive to the ideological ferment of Shakespeare’s time and to similarities and differences between his time and our own. We will discuss seven of his mature plays—Macbeth, Twelfth Night, As You Like It, Othello, King Lear, Hamlet, and The Tempest. Besides delivering an oral report, students will also write two two-page interpretations of short passages, a four-page interpretation of a topic in one play, and a ten-page interpretation of a topic in one play drawing on published criticism. There will also be a midterm and a final.

English 3309 – Creative Writing
Robin Davidson
MW 11:30 am – 12:45 pm

The Russian poet Marina Tsvetaeva writes, “The whole event of poetry—from the poet's vision to the reader's reception—takes place entirely within the soul, that first, lowest sky of the spirit.” In this workshop, we will explore the “event” of poetry, fiction, and non-fiction prose—the presence of literature in our lives, both as readers and writers. We will examine our memories and dreams as well as the details of our daily lives for kernels of story that abide there, paying close attention to literary craft. In our fifteen weeks together, we will read our way through a variety of genres—poetry, short fiction, and memoir and authors—twentieth-century American men and women, as well as writers of different historical moments and cultures. We will engage the visual arts and music as literary space. And we will consider the role of creative writing as a public response to matters of social urgency in our century. It is my hope that, over the course of the workshop, you will begin to develop a cycle of poems or stories or essays that deal with the things of the world about which you feel most deeply.


English 3312 – Studies in Fiction: The Modern British Novel
Paul Kintzele
MW 11:30 am – 12:45 pm

This course is an introduction to one of the most explosive and innovatory periods in British literary history. Our primary task will be to read a sequence of novels as intensely and carefully as possible. We will ask questions such as: How did 20th-century novelists respond to the literary forms and practices they inherited from the Victorians? How was the very concept of the “novel” defined and redefined? What were the new ways in which 20th-century writers used language? What do these novels tell us about a larger social and political context that includes the Great War, the dissolution of the British Empire, the advent of modern technology, the Irish question, the status of women in society, and the relation of Britain to its former colonies? What do these texts say about the past—including the literary past? Our overarching goal, then, will be to examine how certain writers met the cognitive, ethical, aesthetic, and political challenges that faced them during this eventful century. Authors may include: Conrad, Joyce, Woolf, Lawrence, Beckett, Fowles, Byatt, Rushdie, and Ishiguro. Requirements: Three essays and occasional quizzes.

ENG 3313 - Studies in Dramatic Literature
Dr. Susan Ahern
TR 8:30 – 9:45 am
CRN 11800

This course will work to strengthen your skills in reading, discussing, and writing about dramatic works in ways that recognize their theatricality. You will refine your ability to:

  • Recognize characteristics in language, style, characterization, and habits of thought in plays from a range of playwrights in different genres and from various cultural moments across Western theater history
  • Use critically knowledge of relevant staging practices, techniques, conventions, and theories.
  • Recognize and discuss examples of ways that changes in stages and theaters affect the kinds of plays written and performed
  • Investigate how drama reaffirms, undermines, helps constitute the ideas, values, and tastes of a given culture

Text: Klaus, Carl H., Miriam Gilbert, and Bradford S. Field, ed. Stages of Drama: Classical to Contemporary Theater. 5th ed. New York: Bedford/St. Martin's Press, 2003. ISBN: 0-312-39733-X.

  • Handouts, WebCT links, and reserves to provide relevant theory and criticism
  • Requirements – Participation in website discussion, two exams, two papers, group project with presentation.

ENG 3315 - British Science Fiction

Dr. Nicole LaRose

Aliens, monsters, intelligent machines, apocalypse, and disaster may be the subjects of science fiction, but the genre has traditionally used these fantastical subjects as a way to deal with historical turmoil. Industrialization, politics, war, and revolution are therefore the actual subjects of science fiction.In this course we will survey British science fiction with a focus on the ways the novels and films address their historical moments.The interrogation of history results in a rethinking of the meaning of humanity and the potential for utopian thought. The survey may include Mary Shelley, H.G. Wells, Aldous Huxley, George Orwell, John Wyndham, J.G Ballard, Martin Amis, and filmic reimaginings based on novels by these authors. Readings will also be drawn from theorists and critics of science fiction. Students will be expected to complete weekly response papers, one short paper, one longer research-based papers, and a final exam.


English 3323 / Humanities 3323 – Technology and Literature
Dan Shea
TR 10:00-11:15 A.M.

The rapid scientific, technological, and industrial developments of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries inspired a wide variety of literary responses. Some authors could barely contain their enthusiasm for the speed and thrill of cars and airplanes, mechanized factories and cities, telephones and films. Others feared that things were moving too fast and that the world was becoming more suitable for robots than for humans. All agreed that the world had changed—and that we would have to change with it.

In this course we will review a variety of responses to these “modern” technological developments, primarily in British literature from the mid-nineteenth to the mid-twentieth centuries. In particular, we will focus on texts which consider the effects of modern technology and industry on the future of the human race. Many of the works we will consider explore questions about how humanity will evolve as a result of modern life. Will technology make us smarter and better, or will it make us weak and lazy? Will it liberate or enslave us? Will it wipe us out altogether? Readings in the historical contexts and in criticism (with particular attention to race, class, gender, and empire) will help us explore the ways authors asked and answered such questions. We will close with texts which consider newer technologies, including cyberspace, cybernetics, etc.

Authors may include Charles Dickens, H.G. Wells, Bram Stoker, F. T. Marinetti, Aldous Huxley, Mina Loy, T. S. Eliot, Wyndham Lewis, Marx and Engels, William Gibson. Films may include Le Voyage dans la Lune, Metropolis, High Treason, Bladerunner.

English 3340 – Cultural Criticism
Robin Davidson
MW 1:00 pm – 2:15 pm

“If a writer is silent, he is lying,” says the Czech Nobel Laureate Jaroslav Seifert. Polish poet Ewa Lipska writes, “Art is not always a cure. Sometimes it is a poison. It is up to us to decide whether to use it for tolerance and genuine dialogue, or for some barbaric purpose.” In this course, we will employ the works of such Frankfurt School writers as Jürgen Habermas, Theodor Adorno, Hannah Arendt, and Walter Benjamin to explore the trajectory of Eastern European literature from the Holocaust of World War II through the fall of communism in 1989. In particular, we will consider the role of the poetic volume and the novel in a totalitarian society. Readings will include literary selections from the Polish (Herbert, Miłosz, Zagajewski, Szymborska, Lipska), the Czech (Seifert, Kafka, Kundera, Hrabal), and the Romanian (Manea, Cassian, Ursu). Photographs of Poland and the Czech Republic will comprise part of our cultural study. We will also consider the notion of “liberal democracy,” both with regard to Central Europe and contemporary American culture and literature. You will be asked to compose an annotated bibliography, two critical essays, and an oral presentation.

ENG 3316 - History of Rhetoric
Dr. Karina Stokes

Ever wonder why essays follow a specific style of introduction, body paragraphs, and concluding paragraph? Ever wonder why letters follow a specific formal style? Ever wonder why communication follows certain standard forms in Western countries and why other forms are used in Eastern countries? This course will answer these questions and more. Learn how to persuade others that your ideas are worthwhile by understanding the most effective strategies for communicating which have been developed over the centuries and are still employed today.


ENG 3333: Writing for the Mass Media
MW 1:00-2:15

This course covers elements of a variety of types of writing for mass media, including basic tools, style, and writing for print, Web, broadcast, advertising, and public relations as it is a survey of such a wide variety of writing applications, students have the opportunity to select one or more of the above areas pf professional writing for further exploration on their own as a course project. Also included is a brief segment on ethics and legal concerns about writing. The textbook is by J. G. Stovall: Writing for the Mass Media¸ 6th edition (2006). The course also takes advantage of the professor's extensive experience in trade and science journalism, and high-tech PR. Depending on the number of students enrolled, substantial individual advising and critique may be available from the professor.

ENG 4306: Science Writing
Professor Robert L. Jarrett
W 5:30-8:15

This course will focus on writing about current scientific research to expert and lay audiences. Providing a common ground for student research and writing, the course topic will focus on the science of climate change. The primary semester assignment will be an article or report on a current scientific issue in one of the many sub-disciplines of climate change. Student research reports are encouraged to focus on a narrow scientific question or issue within the broad area of climate change. As a means of working methodically towards this report, student will write several abstracts of contemporary research (to help define a research area, issue, or topic of interest), a research proposal, and a literature review of current research on their topic/issue. A short feature article, poster session, or presentation that communicates to lay audiences will be the final assignment.

Assigned texts are Writing in the Sciences (Ann Penrose) and Tim Flannery’s recently-published The Weather Makers. Students will also consults pieces of long reports on climate change from the National Academy of Sciences and the IPCC (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change) report Climate Change 2001: The Scientific Basis.

English 4314 – Major Authors: Richard Wright and James Baldwin
Dr. Chuck Jackson
TR 11:30am – 12:45pm

This course focuses specifically on the writings (both fiction and nonfiction) of two of the most widely read and critically acclaimed African American authors of the twentieth century. While this is not a course in which we read biographical texts about each author, we will theorize the relationship between authorship and authority in a larger social and cultural context, including the strong friendship that developed between the authors and its subsequent, very public dissolution. Moreover, we will consider how each author boldly and, at times, controversially represents the concatenation of race, gender, class, sexuality, violence, and the desire for national belonging, as well as how each articulates a vision of social and political justice.

Along with select nonfiction texts by each author, students will read Richard Wright’s Native Son, Uncle Tom’s Children, and either Lawd, Today! or Eight Men along with James Baldwin’s Go Tell It On the Mountain, Giovanni’s Room, and Another Country. In addition, students will read theoretical selections on the subjects of authorship, African American subjectivity, Marxist literary theory, the transatlantic, masculinity studies, and queer theory.

ENG 4323: Feature Writing for Business and Industry
Professor A. Chiaviello
MW 11:30-12:45

This course covers the entire process of researching, writing, and marketing a feature story, including audience analysis, selection of topics, querying editors, approaches to researching a story, drafting and revising, editing and proofing, and sending out manuscripts to editors. We pay particular attention to the writing of stories that explain and promote products and services of business or industry, but instruction is tailored to the individual student's needs and interests. The inexpensive and concise textbook is by N. M. Hamilton: Uncovering the Secrets of Magazine Writing, a step-by-step guide to writing creative nonfiction for print and Internet publication, a slim volume oriented to producing marketable feature stories. The course also takes advantage of the professor's extensive experience in marketing freelance magazine and newspaper stories. Substantial individual advising and critique is available from the professor.

ENG 4330 Humanities Seminar - Christmas in America: The Holiday and the Controversy
Michael Dressman
MW 8:30-10:00 a.m.

This semester’s theme is an examination of the Christmas holiday as it is and has been celebrated in the United States. This theme will allow a review and analysis of literature and the arts connected to Christmas, as well as laws and policies promoting and limiting acknowledgement of the holiday.

Work for the class will include becoming familiar with visual art, music, drama, films, and readings – fiction and nonfiction – all on the theme of Christmas. Research will be demonstrated in papers and in-class presentations. We will explore historical, cultural, esthetic, religious, and personal identity issues, including notions of childhood.

This class is appropriate for students majoring in Humanities, English, and Interdisciplinary Studies. Students in Professional Writing, Sociology, Political Science, Communication, Social Sciences, and other fields may also find a place for this course in their degree plans.

ENG 4360: Publications Workshop
Professor A. Chiaviello Hours: to be arranged individually

This is a virtual independent study that involves working at Dateline: Downtown, the UHD student newspaper. Course requirements include the regular submission of publishable articles to the newspaper as well as general office and publication production and distribution duties. Students in this course become integral members of the newspaper staff and compile a portfolio of their writings for the course grade. Readings and exercises from the new book by R. Kanigel (The Student Newspaper Survival Guide) may also be assigned, and the student will use the AP Styleguide for guidelines to news writing. Close and sustained interaction with the student newspaper staff is essential, and the student can conference with the professor by appointment and for mid-term and final grades.

ENG 5317 - Theory of Rhetoric
Dr. Karina Stokes

We will examine political and scientific communications in light of the theories of rhetoricians from ancient times to the present.Our focus will be power – social, political, and psychological power. The power to persuade and the ethical issues involved in using that power will be discussed in detail. Our scope will be broad enough to include philosophy, psychology, linguistics, science, and political theory in an effort to thoroughly examine the power that can be wielded in the act of communication.

ENG 6323 - Communications and Technology
Wayne Schmadeka

Critical evaluation of the uses of software to interpret data for, and communication information to, expert and non-expert audiences that are internal and external to an organization.

Learn to:

  • Identify the audiences, their needs and expectations
  • Identify the needs and expectations of the organization addressing the audience
  • Develop documents for internal and external consumption that satisfy the needs and expectations of both the audiences and the organization
  • Develop familiarity with the capabilities and appropriate uses of various tools to develop graphics and charts and deliver documents in multiple formats, including Word, Frame Maker, text, html, pdf, Power Point and Excel
  • Develop familiarity with the advantages and limitations of, and the technologies employed to achieve, single sourcing.

Probable major assignments

  • Use an online survey tool to identify the needs and expectations of the audiences for a organization’s website or documentation
  • Analyze and prepare a report recommending changes to an organization’s website or documentation so that it better meets its audiences‘ needs
  • Use graphics to simplify the representation of complex real-world data


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Last updated or reviewed on 4/21/09

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