COMPLIT 140 - First-Year Literary Seminar
Section: 002 Postmodern Murder Mysteries and Spy Stories
Term: WN 2008
Subject: Comparative Literature (COMPLIT)
Department: LSA Comparative Literature
Credits:
3
Requirements & Distribution:
HU
Other:
FYSem
Waitlist Capacity:
50
Advisory Prerequisites:
Enrollment restricted to first-year students, including those with sophomore standing.
Repeatability:
May be repeated for a maximum of 6 credit(s).
Primary Instructor:

It is not by accident that some of the most influential theorists of the century have made a contribution to the detective story genre, either by analyzing it or by writing murder mysteries themselves — Julia Kristeva and Umberto Ecco are among the most famous examples — nor that the best contemporary writers have written for the genre — e.g., the latest Nobel Prize winner Orhan Pamuk or the American Don Delillo. This course offers an interdisciplinary examination of the detective story genre. We will start with the film classic, Casablanca, uncoveringits famous literary and cinematic mysteries. Then, as background, we will explore key poststructuralist theories of the 20th century that underline and inform the fiction we will be discussing. Finally, we will examine how the texts communicate among themselves and why and how postmodern authors incorporate other texts into their own. We will thus combine the best of the two worlds: an extensive reading list full of thrilling mysteries and an introduction to the literary theory of the 20th century, dealing with issues of intertextuality, semiotics, poststructuralism, representation, globalization, postcolonialism, and psychoanalysis.

Course materials include: fiction (Umberto Ecco, Julia Kristeva, Don Dellilo, Michael Ondatjee, Orhan Pamuk, Amitav Gosh, J.L. Borges), theory (Tzvetan Todorov, Julia Kristeva, Slavoj Žižek, Fredric Jameson), and film.

Evaluation will be based on a midterm paper, a final essay, a presentation on a self-designed topic, and participation in class.

COMPLIT 140 - First-Year Literary Seminar
Schedule Listing
001 (SEM)
P
23441
Open
3
2LHSP Y1
4Y1
-
TuTh 2:30PM - 4:00PM
002 (SEM)
P
28757
Open
2
6Y1
-
TuTh 10:00AM - 11:30AM
NOTE: Data maintained by department in Wolverine Access. If no textbooks are listed below, check with the department.
Syllabi are available to current LSA students. IMPORTANT: These syllabi are provided to give students a general idea about the courses, as offered by LSA departments and programs in prior academic terms. The syllabi do not necessarily reflect the assignments, sequence of course materials, and/or course expectations that the faculty and departments/programs have for these same courses in the current and/or future terms.

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