ENGL 313 A: Modern European Literature In Translation

Meeting Time: 
MW 12:30pm - 2:20pm
LOW 113
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Irena Percinkova-Patton

Additional Details:

“Modernity is a word in search of its meaning” (Octavio Paz). This course will introduce you to celebrated poets, novelists, and playwrights whose works probed the modern condition and defined modern esthetic values in Europe. We’ll search for the meanings of “the modern” and “modernity” across literature, art, and philosophy, from the mid-nineteenth century through the aftermath of World War II. First, we’ll focus on the emergence of a distinctly modern poetic sensibility in Baudelaire’s The Flowers of Evil, modern narrative technique in Flaubert (The Sentimental Education), and modern drama (Ibsen’s Ghosts); next, we’ll explore the sense of crisis informing the vision of modernity in Kafka (“The Metamorphosis” and The Trial), and Beckett’s Endgame; we’ll conclude with Solzhenitsyn’s One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich, a classic of “socialist realism” exposing the evils of Soviet communism. The goal is (i) to develop a good sense of how major modern writers, artists, and thinkers perceived themselves, their art, and the changing world around them, and (ii) to gain insights into the origins, aspirations, and conflicted progress of “the modern.”

Catalog Description: 
Covers selected fiction, poetry, drama, and nonfiction (diaries, manifestos, etc.) in translation by European writers from the mid-19th century to the present. Considers questions of aesthetics, history, and form. Writers may include Bachmann, Baudelaire, Brecht, Celan, Chekhov, Dostoevsky, Ferrante, Flaubert, Ibsen, Jelinek, Kafka, Perec, Proust, Rilke, Tsvetaeva, and Undset.
GE Requirements: 
Visual, Literary, and Performing Arts (VLPA)
Other Requirements Met: 
Last updated: 
March 16, 2016 - 11:01am