Dec 08, 2023  
2021-2022 Catalog 
2021-2022 Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

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ENGL 161 - Cultures of Desire

Credits: 5
Examines literary and cultural representations of desire associated with love, money, intercultural relations, justice, the erotic, etc. from a diverse range of mainstream and under-represented U.S. and global communities. Studies the operations of desire in literature, music, the arts, and film, among other cultural forms, with attention to fulfillment, oppression, resistance, and empowerment for various identities.

Enrollment Requirement: Eligible for ENGL 99  or instructor consent.

Satisfies Requirement: Humanities/Fine Arts/English and Diversity

Course Outcomes:
Students who successfully complete this class will be able to:

  1. Investigate the role and significance of desire in the functioning of literary and cultural texts, especially in representations of Jove, the erotic, sexuality, the body, the spirit, and community, whether obvious or hidden, explicit or implied.
  2. Identify elements and processes of hegemony–e.g., idealization, normativity, repression, displacement, etc.-and resistance as these operate within texts, for example, with regard to historic and current concerns relating to gender, sexual orientation, pleasure, morality, transcendence, justice, children, censorship, pornography, violence, disease, deviance, etc.
  3. Understand the historical, cultural and political contexts within which literary and cultural texts emerge and have influence, including how power relations, social movements, and scientific discourses (such as biology, medicine, psychology, sexology, among other disciplines) have impacted the representation and meaning of desire in various contexts.
  4. Examine the intersections of gender, sexuality, race, ethnicity, class, (dis)ability, age, religion, and/or location as these may shape representations of desire, situating them within comparative social and cultural contexts.
  5. Explore past and current aspirations towards sexual freedom, empowerment and/or liberation as expressed in diverse literary and cultural productions, including heterosexual contexts as well as those of marginalized groups such as the LGBT community and the (dis)abled, among others.
  6. Apply critical thinking and multiple strategies of interpretation, including literary critical schools such as poetics, feminisms, queer theory, psychoanalysis and/or cultural studies.

Program Outcomes
Demonstrate college-level reading skills by summarizing, analyzing, interpreting, synthesizing, and evaluating college texts; and develop an awareness of the approaches writers use for different audiences, genres, and rhetorical situations.

College-wide Outcomes
  • Critical Thinking - Critical thinking finds expression in all disciplines and everyday life. It is characterized by an ability to reflect upon thinking patterns, including the role of emotions on thoughts, and to rigorously assess the quality of thought through its work products. Critical thinkers routinely evaluate thinking processes and alter them, as necessary, to facilitate an improvement in their thinking and potentially foster certain dispositions or intellectual traits over time.

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