Descriptions from Faculty

January Interim 2015

ENG 130.01  Introduction to Native American Literatures  Online Course
Dr. Brill de Ramírez

What is the relationship between human persons and stories? What is the relationship between oral storytelling and written literature?  Why do we read literatures and tell and listen to stories?  In this January Interim course, you will be learning how stories (oral, written, lived) powerfully communicate the realities of the world to their readers (and, in the case of films, their viewers) as demonstrated in the work of Native American writers and filmmakers.

We will explore issues of great relevance to the problems, struggles, and achievements of people around the world because Native American literature requires that we face head on the painful histories of colonization, European and Euro-American empire building, racism, and Manifest Destiny, along with the attendant themes of survivance, endurance, indigenous sovereignty, and the re-indigenization of North America.

Additionally, you will learn the broad relevance of your studies in Native American Literatures. The material you study this semester and the cultures and histories that you learn about will be directly relevant to your understandings of contemporary international and global relations. In many ways, the realities of the 21st century are defined in terms of the interactions between the West and the Non-Western world, their past historical relations, and the legacies of that past as it impacts today. Counts for NW gen.ed. credit.

Two synchronous online exams will be held on Tuesdays, Jan. 6 and Jan. 13 from 3-4 pm. The final exam will be held Monday, Jan. 18 from 3-5 pm.

ENG 301 Advanced Writing – Argumentative Writing
Professor Anne Herbert, Anne

This on-line course focuses on an exploration of public literacy and critical engagement with current public discourse.  Students analyze and apply argumentative language and style, argumentative claims, and organizational patterns of both print and visual rhetoric. 

During the January Interim session, this class will not meet in a classroom on campus.  Rather, the course but will be delivered entirely on line through a Sakai course site, with daily assignments, Mon-Saturday.   

Spring Semester 2015

ENG 101 English Composition

English 101 prepares students to
1. write accurately, clearly, and effectively;
2. achieve an acceptable level of competency in grammar, punctuation, and 
3. complete all stages of the writing process successfully;
4. execute the major forms of expository writing effectively; and
5. demonstrate an acceptable level of competency in research techniques and 

ENG 123/385-40 Modern Austrian Fiction in Vienna
Dr. Timothy Conley

*Honors Sections with Study Abroad Travel during Spring Break

Focus:  Both courses will ask how the cultures and history of Vienna have been represented in fiction and how the experience of visiting the sites represented in the novels can change our understanding of both the fiction and the city.

Final Projects: each student will prepare a visual/verbal/audio project on the city in the fiction and the fiction in the city.  Choices of texts to be determined.

Evaluation: participation in all classes on campus and all classes and activities in Vienna is essential (25%); journals/notebooks  kept during the week in Vienna will be worth 25%; the final project will constitute the remaining 50% of the grade,

Texts:  for both ENG 123 and 385:

Bernhard, Woodcutters
Canetti, Yellow Street
Jelinek, The Piano Teacher
Jelinek, Wonderful, Wonderful Times
Linklater, Before Sunrise
Reed, The Third Man

Text for ENG 385 only:

Bachmann, Malina

ENG 124-01 American Writers
Dr. Danielle Glassmeyer

English 124 will be focusing on American writers from the 20th century such as Crane, Hemingway, Salinger, Vonnegut, and Porter.  We will especially focus on how these writers reflect upon what it means to be “an American,” and furthermore, what it means to be “an American man” or “an American woman,” in their novels, poems, stories, and essays.  Active and thoughtful daily preparation and participation are key aspects of your final grade in this class; in addition, quizzes, brief reflective writing, some group reporting on research, and a researched paper written in stages, and a final exam will contribute to your final grade. 

ENG 123-01 & 02 European Writers
Professor Celine Bourhis

In this course, we will study the representation of human values in significant texts (in translation) by European writers. More specifically, we will read, analyze, and discuss six essential works of philosophical literature by Fyodor Dostoevsky, Franz Kafka, Herman Hesse, Albert Camus, and Milan Kundera. While our approach will be mostly literary, we will also study cultural, social and historical issues at stake in these texts.

Methods: Lectures and Discussions

Required Texts:

  • Notes from Underground by Fyodor Dostoevsky
  • The Trial by Franz Kafka
  • Steppenwolf  by Hermann Hesse
  • The Stranger by Albert Camus
  • The Fall by Albert Camus
  • The Unbearable Lightness of Being by Milan Kundera

Assignments and Evaluations:

  • 10 Quizzes (50 points)
  • 6 Forum contributions (200 words each) (60 points)
  • 1 Midterm exam (120 points)
  • 1 Final paper (5 to 7 pages) (100 points)
  • 1 Final exam (120 points)
  • Participation and Class discussions (50 points)

Total: 500 points

A=500-450; B=449-400; C=399-350; D=349-300; F=299 and below.

ENG 190-02 Women in Literature
Dr. Jean Jost

Come join us for a skip around the globe as we read women’s novels and some poetry from the Netherlands, France, Germany, Cuba, the Southern USA , Australia and elsewhere. We will have one short quiz a week, a take-home midterm, and take-home final exam. We always have a good time.

ENG 207-03 Creative Writing I
Dr. Demetrice Worley

In this course we will examine, analyze, and participate in the craft of creative writing.  We will read creative texts by professional and nonprofessional writers, we write creative texts in two genres (poetry and prose), and we will share our understandings of our creative writing self/selves with each other orally and in written form. 

Methods: Discussion/Writing Workshops

Examinations: Specific Poetry, Fiction, and Creative Nonfiction Writing Assignments; Poetry Terms Examination; Prose Terms Examination; and Semester Creative Writing Portfolio

Text: Imaginative Writing: The Elements of Craft, 3rd ed., Janet Burroway

ENG 233-01 American Literature to 1865
Dr. Timothy Conley

Course Description:  ENG 233 is one of two required survey courses in American Literature, intended as introductory courses for English majors.  As such, the course provides an overview of literary texts and movements from Native American oral literatures to the poetry of Whitman and Dickinson.  We will focus on both cultural and aesthetic cultural issues:  our goal will be to examine the terms by which "America" and "literature" have been understood by diverse writers for diverse communities.  In addition, we will explore the ways contemporary readers/writers have interpreted these texts. Writing/reading/interpretation are themselves considered as negotiations of meaning and effect within particular groups.

We will make frequent use of computer-assisted technologies, both in and out of class, and so you must have an active e-mail account and be (or become) familiar with Sakai, Bradley's web-based teaching/learning program. I usually answer e-mail very promptly; take advantage of this opportunity to extend our exchanges beyond the given office hours.  Note: the course does not satisfy the General Education-Human Values requirement. 


Lauter, Paul, ed. The Heath Anthology of American Literature: Volumes A-B.  7th  ed. Boston and New York: Houghton Mifflin

St. Martin's Handbook, or comparable grammar text with explanation of MLA Style.

ENG 237-01 British Literature to 1800
Dr. Jean Jost

This course begins with Beowulf and includes some Irish tales, King Arthur ‘s exploits,  Chaucer’s Canterbury journey,  a look at Sidney’s Faerie queen,  a hopeful Utopian experience, and poetry from the seventeenth and eighteenth century.  We have a short quiz each class, a take-home midterm, and a take-home final examination. Come join us for the fun. 

ENG 300-02 Advanced Writing - Exposition
Dr. Jean Jost

If you like short stories, you will love this writing course about interesting characters and happenings. We will explore characterization, cause and effect,  problem-solving, a brief mini-research paper in your field,  comparison and contrast of stories,  and other interesting dimensions of writing.  Short quizzes covering the stories  will be part of the course. 

ENG 301-02 & 03 Advanced Writing - Argumentative Writing
Professor Anne Herbert

This on-line course focuses on an exploration of public literacy and critical engagement with current public discourse.  Students analyze and apply argumentative language and style, argumentative claims, and organizational patterns of both print and visual argumentative rhetoric.  Analysis of visual rhetoric on the Internet and in a 3-D virtual environment (SECOND LIFE) is a significant focus of this course.

Method of Instruction:  

Asynchronous Assignments:  This course requires extensive use of all features of Sakai to complete weekly assignments, including readings from on-line texts, video or audio lectures/presentations, as well as group discussion forum activities. Most assignments are asynchronous, with firm due dates.

Synchronous Assignments:  Second Life (a 3-D virtual environment) is a major component of this course.  In addition to a one-hour face-to-face orientation session in the Bradley Library (early in semester), students will meet mid-semester in the Second Life virtual world for a mandatory one-hour presentation.  All other Second Life assignments are asynchronous activities and independent research within the virtual world.

 Enrollees must have reliable, high-speed Internet access.   Laptops loaded with Second Life can be checked out and used in the BU Library to complete assignments in Second Life.   Personal computers must meet the system requirements for Second Life:

Texts: No print textbook – all instructional materials will be accessible through Sakai, Second Life, or the Internet. 

ENG 301-04 Advanced Writing - Argumentative Writing
Dr. Thomas Palakeel

This English Composition (C2) course focused on persuasive writing draws on the work of great thinkers, ancient and modern, on topics such as education, language, mind, nature, gender, ethics, and government. As envisioned by BU Gen Ed Program (, this class seeks to help you develop “intellectual tools necessary to explore the best that civilization has produced” and to send you off at the end of this semester with the critical thinking and writing skills necessary to respond to “political, social, cultural, technological and natural environment.”

TEXTS: Lee Jacobus A World of Ideas Ninth Edition. Bring a journal notebook to class. There will be plenty of writing in class and at home.

Style: Lessons in Clarity and Grace (11th Edition) by Joseph Williams and Joseph Bizup. (We will work through the lessons in class, largely through in-class journal exercises.)

ENG 304-01 Advanced Writing - Research in Individual Disciplines
Dr. Timothy Conley

Course Description:  In ENG 304 students develop strategies for and successfully complete an upper-level research project:

Required Text:

Ruskiewicz, John, Janice Walker, and Michael Pemberton.  Bookmarks: A Guide to Research and Writing.  3rd ed.  New York: Pearson, 2006. 

ENG 306-05 Advanced Writing – Business Communication
Professor Susan Manley

This advanced writing course (Gen. Ed. C2) provides students with practical experiences and proven strategies for effective professional writing and business communication. Throughout the semester, students will focus on adapting messages for given audiences and purposes, and they will create a variety of business documents. They will also have the opportunity to practice interviewing techniques and to learn the fundamentals of non-verbal communication. This course, which includes individual and collaborative writing assignments, applies to all majors.

At the end of the semester, students will submit a comprehensive portfolio project to demonstrate what they heave learned about professional writing and communication.

ENG 306-06 & 07 Advanced Writing - Business Communication
Professor Celine Bourhis

This course is an advanced writing course (English Composition, C2)—part of the General Education Program—that will focus on strategies for effective writing. More specifically, we will examine key concepts of business communication (rhetorical situation analysis, collaboration, design, and ethics). We will also study successful writing strategies and practice writing a variety of essential business documents, such as letters, memos, reports, and proposals. This course, which includes individual and collaborative writing assignments, applies to all majors. ENG 306: Business Communication is designed to help students communicate and write effectively in professional settings.

Methods: Lectures, discussions, workshop.

Required Text: Oliu, Walter, Charles Brusaw, and Gerald Alred. Writing That Works: Communicating Effectively on the Job. 11th ed. New York: Bedford St. Martin’s, 2013.

Assignments and Evaluations:

  • Peer reviews
  • In-class activities
  • 5 writing projects
  • Final exam: oral presentation

ENG 336 20th Century American Literature
Dr. Danielle Glassmeyer

This course will focus on gender – specifically the cultural construction of masculinity – as a way to organize our inquiry into texts by writers such as Crane, Hemingway, Buck, Michener, and Vonnegut, and filmmakers such as Kazan, Hitchcock, and Logan.  Students will have the opportunity to study narratology/narrative theory and the class will use its methods as an analytic tool.  Course grade will be determined by elements to include active involvement in discussions, written and oral reports on group findings, reflection papers, brief reports on analytic exercises, and a major researched paper project developed in stages.  Presentation of preliminary research at the English Department Colloquium or University Expo will be strongly encouraged.

ENG 329 African American Literature: Black Women Novelists
Dr. Demetrice Worley

In this course we will read and analyze texts written by African American Women from the 20th century to the opening of the 21st century to analyze the role of and the impact of “silence” in Black women writers’ texts:  What is the relevance of silence in African American women’s private lives? Public lives?  Political/social struggles?  What is/was the meaning(s) of silence in African American women’s private/public lives during the first half of the 20th Century?  During the second half of the 20th Century?  How will silence impact African American women’s lives in the 21st Century?

Methods: Whole-class Discussion; Small-group Discussions

Examinations: Class Participation, Oral Presentation (Collaborative), Midterm Examination, Semester Paper (12 to 15 pages), and Final Examination

REQUIRED TEXTS: What Looks Like Crazy on an Ordinary Day, Pearl Cleage; Beloved, Toni Morrison; Their Eyes Were Watching God, Zora Neale Hurston; Praisesong for the Widow, Paule Marshall; The Color Purple, Alice Walker; Quicksand, Nella Larsen; and TBA.

ENG 381-01 Literatures of Asia
Dr. Thomas Palakeel

This Gen Ed Non-Western Civilization course will focus on the intellectual and aesthetic aspects of key literary works produced by the Indian, Chinese, and the Japanese cultures. Through a close study of major texts in English translation, the course explores the nexus between culture, literature, history, and modernity. We are also interested in the study of non-Western notions of genres, literary conventions and literary periods. The texts under study represent Asia’s uniquely Hindu, Buddhist, and Taoist heritage.

Texts:  The Mahabharata, Trans. John D. Smith; Anthology of Japanese Literature Edited by Donald Keene; Hesse’s Siddhartha/Dammapada New Directions edition; Chinese Poems and Sakuntala and the Ring of Recognition (both Dover thrift editions); Analects of Confucius (Norton Critical Edition)   


ENG 403/503 Advanced/Intensive Creative Nonfiction Workshop
Dr. Thomas Palakeel

Creative Nonfiction is a belletristic prose genre committed to factual, verifiable truth while aspiring to a heightened sensitivity to the beauty of language. The form takes advantage of the narrative techniques of fiction and lyricism of poetry. In recent years, several major books have elevated the status of the genre to high literature. The greatest example of the genre in my view is, of course, Thoreau’s Walden. Most prominent contemporary creative nonfiction writers include Annie Dillard, John McPhee, Tracy Kidder, Janet Malcolm, Susan Olean, Gay Talese, and David Sedaris.

Texts: Your own work is the primary textbook.
1.  The Rings of Saturn by W. G. Sebald
2. Touchstone Anthology of Creative Nonfiction edited by Lex Williford and Michael Martone
3. Must read a third book of creative nonfiction of your choice. (No need to buy.)

ENG 407/507 Advanced/Intensive Poetry Workshop
Dr. Kevin Stein 

This semester's workshop will focus on writing, revising, and engaging poetry (as opposed to fiction or non-fiction).  As usual in such settings, you will workshop fellow students' work and receive same in turn. Our primary goal is for each of you to complete a self-designed poetry project approved by the instructor.  To aid and enhance this process, you’ll also read from the work of professional writers and discuss that work in class, as well as attend the semester's Visiting Writers Series events. Several prose assignments will familiarize you with poetry’s literary marketplace and deepen your understanding of your personal aesthetic influences.

Finally, to ensure classmates receive your best commentary in response to their works, you will be asked on occasion to respond digitally to ALL classmates’ poems submitted in selected weeks. This schedule will be announced weekly in workshop.

Our purpose is to create a community in which writers write and think about writing – a place to write and write about writing, and a place to think about thinking about writing.