Tu Th 6:30-9:30pm
This course explores the world of the fairy tales (or Märchen) collected and edited by Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm.
The course begins with an intellectual orientation explaining the complexity of the tales by readings from Jack Zipes
Two Brothers Named Grimm”) and Vladimir Propp (Morphology of the Folktale). We then proceed to examine and
discuss the more popular fairy tales, including “Snow White,” “Cinderella,” “Rapunzel,” and many more. Contrary to
a sentimental or popular understanding, these fairy tales are complicated works of fiction, often politically charged,
sexually provocative, violent in nature, and, well, grim. For each class the student is assigned a specific question to
be answered in conjunction with a particular fairy tale. These questions serve as the basis of our analysis of the fairy
tale generated through class discussion. A 10-15 page paper analyzing a fairy tales not covered in class is due at
the conclusion of the course. Evaluation/grade is based on attendance, quality of assigned questions on fairy tales,
and the final paper analyzing the selected fairy tale.
Estimated Student Fees: $75
Novels Right Now: Commodities or Future Best Sellers
M Tu Th 1:00-3:00pm
In this project, we will read four very recent novels that have appeared on the best-seller lists and have also
achieved at least some literary acclaim. In class meetings, we will discuss the novels, but we will also consider what
makes books popular and what makes them ‘literature’. We will explore best-seller lists from the past, as well as
past winners of literary awards. We will consider questions such as these:
Are contemporaries able to recognize a ‘masterpiece’?
How often does literary fiction achieve best-seller status?
What distinguishes literary fiction from commodity fiction?
We will meet three afternoons a week, and students will write four short (2-5 page) papers, one about each of the
four novels we will read and discuss.
In addition, each student will select a related topic to research and present to the class. For instance, one student
might look up what was on the best-seller lists when a novel that has entered the literary canon of ‘great works’ was
first published. Another student might seek out reviews of best-selling novels from another decade or another
century to see if any were proclaimed important works of literature and whether we agree with that judgment now.
Note: Students will be required to purchase four newly published novels for this project.
Sci-Fi Sixties: From Camelot to the Final Frontier
EH 102 or EH 208
M Tu W Th 10:00am-12:00pm; Tu Th 1:00-4:00pm
Novelist Ursula K. Le Guin once wrote, “Prediction is the business of prophets, clairvoyants, and futurologists. It is
not the business of novelists. A novelist’s business is lying.” The point of science fiction is not to predict the future