Penn Arts & Sciences Logo

Introduction to Literary Theory

ENGL 094.401
instructor(s):
fulfills requirements:
Sector 1: Theory and Poetics of the Standard Major
Sector 6: 20th Century Literature of the Standard Major

This course provides an exposure to the main discourses and practices of theory understood as literary and cultural theory. We will start with early formulations of the problem of interpretation with Plato and Aristotle, then move on to modern and contemporary approaches. We will survey the main concepts of Formalism, Structuralism, Post-structuralism, Psychoanalysis, Marxism, Feminism and Deconstruction. We will engage with Post-colonial studies, Cultural Studies and Queer Theory. We will use the Norton Anthology of Theory and Criticism (2001).   

Requirements: One oral report, two short papers (8 pages) and a final research paper (15 pages). No final exam.