Instructor: Andersen | MWF 10:10 – 11:05 AM

Writing, Picturing, and the Shock of the New

From taking selfies to writing dating profiles, narrating and presenting a self to the world is a part of our everyday lives. But before the age of social media and the internet, poet T. S. Eliot reflected on the time and energy it takes “To prepare a face to meet the faces that you meet.” In this class, we’ll explore our changing relationship with nature, technology, and society by reading and discussing works of English literature from 1780 to the present. How do writers tell the story of a developing self in a rapidly changing world? How do technological innovations and scientific discoveries alter our notions of what it means to be human? How do humans impact the environment, and how does the natural world shape our understanding of ourselves? We’ll reflect on these questions as we read various forms and genres of literature, including lyric poetry, dramatic monologues, short stories, the bildungsroman (coming of age novel), science fiction, stream of consciousness narrative, and experimental drama.