SPR18 303-01

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Humanities 303-01: History and Culture

SPRING 2018

T/Th 11-12.15 in HUM 121

Sean Connelly

Office location/ hours in HUM 219 on T/Th 12.30-1.30 and by appt.

Contact: connelly@sfsu.edu

Prerequisite: ENG 114 or equivalent. This is an upper division course. First and second year students need instructor permission to enroll. 

The Project:

HUM303 introduces students to critical perspectives on the relationship between culture and history. How do texts “express” the cultural values and socio-material conditions of their historical contexts?

Avoiding the blind alley of presentism, we will examine the ways readers and audiences contribute to signification by generating cogent meanings from representations. Subject to the “common sense” of a determinate situation, how are we to interpret the artifacts of our own time and those of prior periods? How do those meanings change over time?

In order to address such questions we will analyze works from a variety of genres, including film, the novel, poetry, popular music, photography, and painting. Does the form of a given signifying practice shape its content or is form itself a kind of content? To do so we will develop a vocabulary of keywords including ideology, narrative discourse, dialectics, and the bolded terms in this syllabus.

Modernity— as a historical period,  a civilizational project, and a social experience mediating our relationship to the world– lies at the heart of this course, though we will be focusing on that concept in some very particular ways.

For example, in contradiction to many moderns’ sense of themselves as rational subjects governed by Enlightenment principles, we will investigate the dark and irrational currents animating the Modern Era from its inceptions to the present. The quest for knowledge as a form of mastery over the natural world, Renaissance poets and refugee Marxist philosophers alike have argued, possesses a diabolical aspect. The forces of the past are like revenants, undead yet still unburied.

Students who do the work will complete the semester with a general knowledge of the Modern, a solid foundation in narratology, and a basic critical toolkit with which to analyze cultural production and semiosis.

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Basic Etiquette

ARRIVE ON TIME,  work completed, with a hard copy of the assigned text. All assignments should be typed and include name/date/course. No electronic devices should be used during class.

Intellectual Honesty

CHEATING DESTROYS trust between teacher and student. If you can’t trust your teacher, then you deserve a new one. If you can’t trust your students, etc.

As a general rule any ideas/words that are not your own should be cited. Yet intellectual honesty encompasses more than actively avoiding plagiarism. For example, reading a wikipedia entry rather than an assigned novel or allowing others to do your work for you are examples of cheating.

See http://www.sfsu.edu/~vpsa/judicial/titlev.html

Accessibility

If there’s anything I should know about you as a student, please talk to me RIGHT AWAY and I’ll do my best to help. See also: Disability Program and Resource Center (338-2472 or dprc@sfsu.edu).

Resources

The SAFE Place – (415) 338-2208; http://www.sfsu.edu/~safe_plc/

Counseling and Psychological Services Center – (415) 338-2208; http://psyservs.sfsu.edu/

Additional information on rights and available resources: http://titleix.sfsu.edu

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The Work: Grading Rubric

5-6 page Essay 15% (Write an informed and incisive academic essay on one of the 3 novels assigned for this course. You MUST use key terms drawn from Abbott’s Introduction to Narrative in a thoughtful and germane manner. Due dates: Crime and Punishment [3/8], Vandover and the Brute [4/24], Devil on the Cross [5/15]. )

Class Work 25% (class participation, attendance, in-class work) Students are expected to complete the assigned readings, think about what they read, and actively participate in class discussion. Late work will not be accepted.

Midterm 20% (Short responses to key terms) 3/8

Film Analysis Presentation 20% 5/2, 5/4, 5/9, 5/11

Final Exam 20% (Short responses to key terms) 5/16

Title: Der Totentanz (Dance of Death); Image ID: SS35559_35559_26074659

Creator: Hasemann, Arminius  Date: 1926

Required Texts:

BUY HARD COPIES of the right books! Read with a pencil. Flag significant passages. Always look for patterns. Talk about what you read.

H. Porter Abbott, Introduction to Narrative 978-0521715157

Fyodor Dostoevsky, Crime and Punishment 978-1631490330

Christopher Marlowe, Dr. Faustus 978-0486282084

Ngugi wa Thiongo, Devil on the Cross 9780143107361

Frank Norris, Vandover and the Brute 9781554812394

Ian Roberts, German Expressionist Cinema 978-1905674602

https://epublications.marquette.edu/gothic_glossary/

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eReader:

* recommended but not required

Adorno and Horkheimer, “The Culture Industry: Enlightenment as Mass Deception”:  CultureIndustry

*Ancuta, “Asian Gothic”: NCGAncutaAsianGothic

*Belsey, “Constructing the Subject, Deconstructing the Text”: belseysubject

Berman, All That is Solid Melts Into Air (excerpts): Solid_Air

Baldick, “Introduction” from Oxford Book of Gothic TalesBaldickGothic

Baraka, “Dope”: Dope

*Bronfen, “Cinema of the Gothic Extreme”:  GothicCinema

Clavin, “Race, Rebellion, and the Gothic: Inventing the Haitian Revolution”: GothicHaiti

Eagleton, “Allergic to Depths”: https://www.lrb.co.uk/v21/n06/terry-eagleton/allergic-to-depths

*Hall and Gieben (eds), Formations of Modernity: Formations of Modernity

Hawkes, “Faust Among the Witches”: FaustWitches

Hughes, et al. “Commodity Gothicism”, “Degeneration”, “Doubles”: ENCGothic

Marx and Engels, Communist Manifesto (excerpt): ManifestoSec1

*McNally, Monsters of the Market (excerpts): monsters-of-the-market-zombies-vampires-and-global-capitalism

Moretti, “Dialectic of Fear”: DialecticofFear

*Snodgrass, Encyclopedia of Gothic Literature (excerpts):  Encyclopedia_Of_Gothic_Lit

*Toohey, “The Cultural Logic of Periodization”: The Cultural Logic of Historical Periodization

*White, “The Value of Narrativity in the Representation of Reality”: HWhiteNarrativity

Williams, “Dominant, Residual, Emergent”: WmsDRE

Films:

https://analepsis.org/hum425-filmography-horrorgothicthriller/

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Schedule

Week One:  1/23-1/25

Tuesday

In Class: Course Introduction. Baraka, “Dope”

Screen: The Hunger clip.

Thursday

Screen: The Cramps, “I Was a Teenage Werewolf”  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HrbTkNwbUz8 ; Xmal Deutschland, “Mondlicht” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1_1FHvLxeA4 ;Pink Turns Blue, “I Coldly Stare Out” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yqCy29-DDm8; Bauhaus, “Bela Lugosi’s Dead” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1U1SiIWuZeE

Due: Berman, All That is Solid Melts Into Air (Prefaces, Introduction)

 

Week Two: 1/30-2/1

Tuesday

Due: PRINT, READ and ANNOTATE Marx and Engels, “Manifesto of the Communist Party”;  Eagleton, “Allergic to Depths”

Screen: Bram Stoker’s Dracula

Thursday

Due: Williams, Dominant, Residual, Emergent

Screen: “All That is Solid Melts Into Air”

 

Week Three: 2/6- 2/8

Tuesday

Due: Marlowe, Dr. Faustus

Screen: The Psychedelic Furs, “Sister Europe“; Angel Heart (d. Parker 1987)

Thursday

Due: Marlowe, Dr. Faustus; Baldick, “Introduction”

 

Week Four: 2/13- 2/15

Tuesday

Due: Hawkes, Faust Among the Witches; Abbott, Introduction to Narrative (Ch. 1)

Thursday

Due: Dostoevsky, Crime and Punishment; Abbott, Introduction to Narrative (Ch. 2)

 

Week Five: 2/20- 2/21

Tuesday

Due: Dostoevsky, Crime and Punishment; Abbott, Introduction to Narrative (Ch. 3)

Thursday

Due: Dostoevsky, Crime and Punishment; Abbott, Introduction to Narrative (Ch. 4)

 

Week Six: 2/27- 3/1

Tuesday

Due: Dostoevsky, Crime and Punishment; Abbott, Introduction to Narrative (Ch. 5)

Thursday

Class Canceled

 

Week Seven: 3/6- 3/8

Tuesday

Due: Dostoevsky, Crime and Punishment; Abbott, Introduction to Narrative (Ch. 6)

Thursday

Wrap CP

 

Week Eight: 3/13- 3/15

Tuesday

Review

Thursday 

MIDTERM

Due: Dostoevsky Essay

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Week Nine: 3/20- 3/22

Spring Break

 

Week Ten: 3/27- 3/29

CR/NC Option Deadline on 3/30

Tuesday

Due: Norris, Vandover and the Brute

Thursday

Due: Norris, Vandover and the Brute

Week Eleven: 4/3- 4/5

Tuesday

Due: Norris, Vandover and the Brute

Thursday

Due: Norris, Vandover and the Brute

 

Week Twelve: 4/10- 4/12

Tuesday

Due: Roberts, German Expressionist Cinema

Thursday

Due: Roberts, German Expressionist Cinema

 

Week Thirteen: 4/17– 4/19

Tuesday

Due: Roberts, German Expressionist Cinema

Thursday

 

Week Fourteen: 4/24- 4/26

Tuesday

Due: Norris Essay

Adorno and Horkheimer, “The Culture Industry: Enlightenment as Mass Deception”

Thursday:

Due: Ngugi, Devil on the Cross

 

Week Fifteen: 5/1- 5/3

Tuesday

Film Analysis Presentations

Due: Ngugi, Devil on the Cross

Thursday

Film Analysis Presentations

Due: Ngugi, Devil on the Cross

 

Week Sixteen: 5/8- 5/10

Tuesday

Film Analysis Presentations

Due: Ngugi, Devil on the Cross

Thursday

Film Analysis Presentations

Due: Ngugi, Devil on the Cross

 

Week Seventeen: 5/15

Tuesday

FINAL EXAM

Ngugi Essay Due

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