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Dialogue and Revision in African American

ENGL 016.301
instructor(s):
TR 10:30-12

Through the study of various literary forms--autobiography, cinema, drama, poetry, and prose--we will consider the importance of terms like "identity", "community", "voice", "freedom", "travel," "escape", "literacy", and "citizenship" as they are utilized by numerous African American narrators. Indeed, largest concern will be with the ways these narrators indulge in authorial dialogues which reflect either distance from or disagreement with other writers over how best to narrate an American experience complicated by issues of race, gender, class, and sexuality. We will consider, then, how African American narratives enact revisionary postures which demonstrate not only literary mastery but literary geneology as well. There will be several short papers whose purpose will be participation in a dialogue with Frederick Douglass, Toni Morrison, Spike Lee, Sherley Anne Williams, and August Wilson.