EG1763: World Literature

Credits 3 Lab Hours 0 Lecture Hours 3 Clinical Hours 0
Tiered Course Indicator
This course is a study of literature from around the world in English, with emphasis upon the diverse historical, geographical and cultural contexts of human values and social orders. Selections will include prose, fiction, poetry and drama from different time periods and regions of the world. "Fiction is a particularly regarding form of literature. It yields a measure of enjoyment and insight more readily than any other form...fiction is, indeed, nothing less that all human experience." (Altenbernd. Stories. 2) Modern short stories and novels turn on issues of knowledge, self-interest and social relations, al founded in a n individual character's perhaps isolated or even antisocial point of view. On the other hand, the older traditions of the fable and tale hinge on how an agent participates in a larger (usually moral) order, thus providing that he or she belongs (or fails to belong) in a larger community. Readers respond differently to the individual and communal emphasis in fiction. Some authors (like Shakespeare and Dickens) deal with personal perspective and moral agency at the same time, which is one reason why they are still so popular and influential today. Poetry moreover offers us insights into the soul, the community and the world, even as the poet modulates the language used to discover the insight and to capture the reader's ear. Drama plunges us into the traumas and delights of characters who act out key moments of their lives on stage, in order to engage the audience in their dilemmas. Different cultures have different literary styles and thematic concerns, which are what this course surveys. Yet we can do all forms of literature for all people. The selections should be valuable representative of major cultural traditions, and they must be pertinent and interesting to readers in the United States at the end of the 20th century.