ENGL 342: Digital Literature: Technologies of Storytelling

Course description:
In an increasingly digitised, networked, and visual culture, it has become clear that narrative is only one among many forms that is used to organise information and represent our world. The movement from print to digital media, however, has by no means left this cultural form behind. This course will introduce and analyse a range of narrative fiction that has emerged with the ascendancy of digital media, including hypertexts and Web-based fiction; textual adventure games/Interactive Fictions (IFs); and text-based multi-user discourses (MUDs). It will also address the role of narrative in structuring and shaping artefacts of contemporary popular culture that are exclusive to screen media, such as Web-logs (or “blogs”) and video games.

NOTE: Only basic computer literacy and web navigation skills are recommended for this paper, but no technical skills are needed. The “computer lab” is like a tutorial that will involve computers as well as discussion.


ENGL 233: Approaches to Literary Studies

Course description:
Taking as our primary object of study Joseph Conrad’s classic novel Heart of Darkness, this paper will introduce students to a range of analytical approaches and theories of literary study. Over the semester, we will investigate how critics have interpreted the novel using New Criticism; narrative theory; structuralism and formalism; Marxist criticism; gender and feminist theory; adaptation studies; New Historicism; postcolonial theory; psychoanalytic criticism, and cognitive/evolutionary approaches to literary study.


ENGL 467: Storyworlds and Cognition

Course description:
ENGL 467 applies advanced narrative theory to a range of fictional storyworlds across media, including texts in print (novels and short fiction) and in digital environments (digital fiction and videogames). More specifically, it combines cognitive-based narrative theory and literary theory in order to identify the affordances and limitations of different modes and media, with particular focus on the representation of fictional minds. In recognizing the ways in which narratives across media represent consciousness and cognition, we aim to determine what such texts can tell us about the minds of actual readers, viewers, and players in turn.