English 435: Women in Literature

Course No: 1435
Subject: English
Grade Level: 12
Course Length: Semester
Course Type: Elective
UC/CSU Subject Approval: B
Prerequisite: English 100 or 103H; 200 or 203H; 300 or 303H
Criteria for Enrollment: None
Fulfillments: Eight-semester graduation requirement

This course is designed to investigate various portrayals of women in literature, film, and other media in order to learn how gender roles develop and change in different historical, political, and cultural contexts.    Through a study of diverse literary greats – Virginia Woolf, Zora Neale Hurston, Kate Chopin, Rita Dove, William Shakespeare, Barbara Kingsolver, and others — we will examine the myriad images of women in literature.  We will explore how women have accepted, struggled against, and transformed traditional roles of daughter, sister, friend, wife, and mother.  This course involves critical thinking about contemporary issues and will prepare the student for a college introductory composition class.  The writing in the course will be both expository and creative; we will react critically to the works we read, and we will continue to develop our personal literary “voices.”  The goal of the course is to broaden our understanding– historically, socially, economically, spiritually — of women, of men and women in relationships, of the cultural forces that make “gender” such a compelling, interesting topic.  This course promises to be exciting and valuable to women and men; all are encouraged to join in the adventure of “Women in Literature.”