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123250 AR Literature Course - American/North American Lit./Studies (2012W)

The City that Never Sleeps': New York as Reality and Cultural Artifact

5.00 ECTS (2.00 SWS), SPL 12 - Anglistik
Continuous assessment of course work

This is an interactive course! Participation in group discussions and lively participation in online discussion forums will be part of the final grade!

Registration/Deregistration

Note: The time of your registration within the registration period has no effect on the allocation of places (no first come, first serve).

Details

max. 24 participants
Language: English

Lecturers

Classes (iCal) - next class is marked with N

Friday 12.10. 12:00 - 14:00 Raum 4 Anglistik UniCampus Hof 8 3E-EG-19
Friday 19.10. 12:00 - 14:00 Raum 4 Anglistik UniCampus Hof 8 3E-EG-19
Friday 09.11. 12:00 - 14:00 Raum 4 Anglistik UniCampus Hof 8 3E-EG-19
Friday 16.11. 12:00 - 14:00 Raum 4 Anglistik UniCampus Hof 8 3E-EG-19
Friday 23.11. 12:00 - 14:00 Raum 4 Anglistik UniCampus Hof 8 3E-EG-19
Friday 30.11. 12:00 - 14:00 Raum 4 Anglistik UniCampus Hof 8 3E-EG-19
Friday 07.12. 12:00 - 14:00 Raum 4 Anglistik UniCampus Hof 8 3E-EG-19
Friday 14.12. 12:00 - 14:00 Raum 4 Anglistik UniCampus Hof 8 3E-EG-19
Friday 11.01. 12:00 - 14:00 Raum 4 Anglistik UniCampus Hof 8 3E-EG-19
Friday 18.01. 12:00 - 14:00 Raum 4 Anglistik UniCampus Hof 8 3E-EG-19
Friday 25.01. 12:00 - 14:00 Raum 4 Anglistik UniCampus Hof 8 3E-EG-19

Information

Aims, contents and method of the course

"New York is a different country," the entrepreneur Henry Ford once quipped, "Everybody thinks differently, acts differently." Ford's remark, which describes New York City as an isolated space, distinct from 'the rest of America, is revealing in the light of the recent Spatial Turn with its focus on the cultural significance of urban spaces and the meaning of location and belonging as identity markers. Throughout its history, New York City has not only been characterized as an 'independent space' in its own right, but also as the epitome of the 'American Dream.' It is part of this ambiguous rhetoric that New York symbolizes both 'Americanness' (being the first U.S. capital) and globalization ('The World's Business Capital'). Perhaps more than any other city, NYC lends itself to contradictory projections that portray it either as a democratic 'melting pot' or as a misanthropic Moloch. The course will investigate a wide range of images and fictions based in the city of New York, from the early days of the U.S. republic to the heyday of immigration and finally the terror of 9/11. We will examine a number of influential texts about the 'Big Apple,' including short fiction (e.g., Stephen Crane's Maggie from 1893), longer prose (Dos Passos's Manhattan Transfer from 1925), poetry (Hart Crane's "To Brooklyn Bridge" from 1930), comedies (Annie Hall from 1977), film melodrama (Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close from 2011), and television shows (Sex and the City, 1998-2004). Our discussions will be grounded in scholarly works associated with urban studies and spatial theory (T. Bender, M. de Certeau, H. Lefèbvre, S. Sassen, E. Soja, E. Wheeler).

Assessment and permitted materials

Regular attendance; active in-class participation; presentation as part of an expert session with 4-page handout to be distributed in class; reading assignments; occasional quizzes; at least 8 elaborate entries in the discussion forum.

Minimum requirements and assessment criteria

The course investigates the aesthetics and function of one of the greatest symbols of America itself: New York. Looking at NYC as both a site of lived experience (immigration, terrorism, etc.) and as a cultural artifact (epitomizing America's highest dreams and darkest fears), we will try to grasp the fascination and enduring vision associated with the city.

Examination topics

Presentations by students in the form of expert sessions (based on PowerPoint and handouts, focusing on five discussion questions and two or three relevant passages/sequences from movies or literary texts to be selected by the experts and discussed in class); forum discussions on Moodle.

Reading list

All relevant texts are available on Moodle.

Association in the course directory

Studium: Diplom 343, UF 344, MA 844;
Code/Modul: Diplom 325, 326/328, 336/338, 721-723, UF 4.2.4-323, MA5, MA7;
Lehrinhalt: 12-0126

Last modified: Mo 07.09.2020 15:33