Search | Directories | Reference Tools
UW Home > Discover UW > Student Guide > Course Catalog 

Instructor Class Description

Time Schedule:

Heather L. Stansbury
ENGL 200
Seattle Campus

Reading Literary Forms

Covers techniques and practice in reading and enjoying literature in its various forms: poetry, drama, prose fiction, and film. Examines such features of literary meanings as imagery, characterization, narration, and patterning in sound and sense. Offered: AWSp.

Class description

In this course, we will focus on the themes of ambition and desire in a variety of literary works and forms. The aspirations of glory, the pangs of unrequited love, and the psychological and physical consequences of forbidden desire are some of the topics to be explored. We will begin with some poetry, taking an extended look at Shakespeare’s sonnets. We will continue to look at poetic devices as we move from sonnets to epic poetry with excerpts from Milton’s epic poem about the fall of man, Paradise Lost. With this text, Milton’s Satan and his pursuit of power will be explored in great detail. Returning to the great bard, our reading of Shakespeare’s Macbeth, a play as much about fate and freewill as it is about ambition and desire, will be enhanced with a live performance of the drama outside of class, as well as by scenes from film versions to be screened in class. We will end with Vladmir Nabokov’s controversial novel of taboo desire Lolita. Please be warned that some readings will be difficult, but I promise they will be rewarding. These works can be provocative, but my hope is that they will allow for rich discussions. Issues of gender and sexuality will continue to arise.

A course packet will also be required, and a few critical pieces on our primary texts will be assigned. As this is a W course, you will be expected to write.

Student learning goals

General method of instruction

Recommended preparation

Class assignments and grading


The information above is intended to be helpful in choosing courses. Because the instructor may further develop his/her plans for this course, its characteristics are subject to change without notice. In most cases, the official course syllabus will be distributed on the first day of class.
Last Update by Heather L. Stansbury
Date: 06/28/2011