Division of Arts and Letters

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The Minor in Literature

Division of Arts & Letters
Contact
Debra Parker
Arts & Letters Chair
dparker@ben.edu

The Minor in Literature is designed to develop students' appreciation and understanding of English and American literature, as well as writings of other nations in translation. 

How do you earn a minor in Literature?

Students can earn a minor in Literature by completing at least 21 hours of the following required courses with a grade of "C" or higher. At least six hours (two courses) must be at the 300 level. 

LITR 100 | Introduction to Literary Analysis I

ntroduction to literary study and criticism. Focus on genres, techniques and development of literature. Emphasis on critical reading and writing. Introductory course for Literature minors. 

At least one course from the following:

LITR 255 | American Literature I 

Survey of American literature from its Colonial roots, particularly the influence of the Puritans, to its flowering in New England. Counts as pre-1800. 3 semester credit hours. Typically offered: Fall Term.   

LITR 256 | American Literature II 

Survey of American literature since the Civil War. Emphasis on development of Realism and Naturalism in the 19th century, and modernism in the 20th. Counts as post-1800. 3 semester credit hours. Typically offered: Spring Term.   

LITR 257 | British Literature I 

Historical survey of representative British literary texts from the Anglo-Saxon period to 1800, with attention to modes of critical reading and development of important  genres. Counts as pre-1800. 3 semester credit hours. Typically offered: Periodically.   

LITR 258 | British Literature II 

Historical survey of representative British and Anglophone literary texts from 1800 to the present, with attention to the larger cultural context and contemporary modes of literary analysis. Counts as post-1800. 3 semester credit hours. Literature Core Elective. Typically offered: Spring Term.   

Descriptions of Courses in Literature  

LITR 099 | Critical Reading 

This course teaches students to be critical readers and thinkers. They will learn to read and accurately summarize information.  They will learn to use textbooks to prepare for classroom lectures and discussions as well as prepare for taking tests. They will increase proficiency in their reading skill, improve vocabulary, and develop versatility in reading rate. They will learn different ways of reading and learning in different disciplinary contexts. 3 semester credit hours. Typically offered: Fall and Spring Terms.  

LITR 100 | Introduction to Literary Analysis 

Introduction to literary study and criticism. Focus on genres, techniques and development of literature. Emphasis on critical reading and writing. Introductory course for Literature minors. Prerequisite for 300-level Literature courses. 3 semester credit hours. Typically offered: Spring Term.   

LITR 210 | Literature and Film

Selected literary texts and their representation on film; analysis of the relationship between the two genres, and differences between written texts and visual media. 3 semester credit hours. Typically offered: Spring Term, Odd Years.   

LITR 224 | Literature: Short Stories in Fiction 

The study of types of short fiction in historic perspective to give the student an understanding of the nature and forms of fictional literature. Prerequisite: WRIT-101 with a grade of "C" or better. 3 semester credit hours. Typically offered: Fall Term, Odd Years.   

LITR 255 | American Literature I 

Survey of American literature from its Colonial roots, particularly the influence of the Puritans, to its flowering in New England. Counts as pre-1800. 3 semester credit hours. Typically offered: Fall Term.   

LITR 256 | American Literature II 

Survey of American literature since the Civil War. Emphasis on development of Realism and Naturalism in the 19th century, and modernism in the 20th. Counts as post-1800. 3 semester credit hours. Typically offered: Spring Term.                                                            

LITR 257 | British Literature I 

Historical survey of representative British literary texts from the Anglo-Saxon period to 1800, with attention to modes of critical reading and development of important  genres. Counts as pre-1800. 3 semester credit hours. Typically offered: Periodically.   

LITR 258 | British Literature II 

Historical survey of representative British and Anglophone literary texts from 1800 to the present, with attention to the larger cultural context and contemporary modes of literary analysis. Counts as post-1800. 3 semester credit hours. Literature Core Elective. Typically offered: Spring Term.   

LITR 263 | Literature of the Early Modern Period 

Selected literary and cultural texts drawn from the late sixteenth to the eighteenth centuries. Places these texts in the context of emerging modernity. Counts as pre-1800. 3 semester credit hours. Typically offered: Spring Term, Odd Years.   

LITR 264 | Global/Postcolonial Literature and Theory 

A comparative study of literature and theory concerning colonial, postcolonial, third world, and diasporic cultures and communities. The course may include such topics as education and the colonial/postcolonial condition; intellectual culture and imperialism; the politics of tourism, identity and diaspora; travel, migration, and globalization; and trauma, genocide, and historical fiction. Counts as diversity elective for majors. 3 semester credit hours. Typically offered: Spring Term, Odd Years. 

LITR 265 | Shakespeare 

Critical reading of representative comedies, tragedies, and histories. Emphasis on such issues as his dramatic art, critical response, and role in constructions of literary culture. Counts as pre-1800. 3 semester credit hours. Literature Core Elective. Typically offered: Spring Term, Even Years.   

LITR 267 | Studies in Poetry 

Critical study of selected poetry, with attention to both formal and interpretive issues; theories of poetry as literary genre. Topics will vary. 3 semester credit hours. Literature Core and Writing Intensive. Typically offered: Spring Term, Even Years.   

LITR 268 | Studies in Drama 

Critical study of selected dramatic literature from a range of cultures and periods; theories of drama as literary genre. Topics will vary. 3 semester credit hours. Literature Core and Writing Intensive. Typically offered: Periodically.   

LITR 269 | Introduction to Creative Writing 

Writing workshop for students; introduction to various forms of modern fiction and poetry. Students will have the opportunity to create original poetry and fiction. Applicable as Fine Arts Core Elective. 3 semester credit hours. Fine Arts Core Elective. Typically offered: Fall Term, Odd Years.   

LITR 279 | U. S. Multiethnic Literature 

A comparative study of literature reflecting the diversity of American culture. In our exploration of just a sampling of the multiple voices of U. S. literature, we will consider these narratives within specific historical, cultural, rhetorical, and literary contexts. Counts as diversity elective for majors.  3 semester credit hours. Literature Core Elective. Typically offered: Fall Term, Even Years.   

LITR 280 | African-American Literature 

Historical and critical exploration of African-American writers' contributions to American fiction, poetry, drama, and non-fiction, from the oral tradition to the present. May include an  Afrocentric approach. Counts as diversity elective for majors. 3 semester credit hours. Literature Core Elective. Typically offered: Spring Term, Even Years.   

LITR 281 | Gender and Literature 

Introduction to gender studies as a mode of literary analysis, and to the role of literary texts in shaping gender constructions. Counts as diversity elective for majors. 3 semester credit hours. Literature Core Elective. Typically offered: Fall Term, Odd Years.   

LITR 291 | Topics in Literature 

Intermediate-level study of authors, themes, movements, and genres; attention  to historical context. Sample topics: American Renaissance, Nineteenth-Century British Women Writers, Gothic, Science Fiction, Lyric. 3 semester credit hours. Literature Core Elective. Typically offered: Periodically. Course Repeatable. Maximum number of units allowed 99.   

LITR 307 | Modern English Language 

Study of traditional, structuralist, and transformational theories of grammar and language, with attention to practical applications for language instruction. Includes introduction to contemporary linguistic theory. Prerequisite: LITR 100. 3 semester credit hours. Typically offered: Spring Term.   

LITR 357 | The Nineteenth Century 

Advanced study of 19th-century fiction, poetry, and/or drama. Topics may include Victorian literature, the 19th-century novel, and Romanticism. Counts as post-1800. Prerequisite: LITR 100. 3 semester credit hours. Typically offered: Spring Term, Odd Years.   

LITR 362 | Modern Literature  

Examines the evolution of poetic and narrative forms since the late 19th century. Emphasis on major British and/or American poets and novelists; may also include translated works from other cultures. Counts as post-1800. Prerequisite: LITR 100. 3 semester credit hours. Typically offered: Spring Term, Even Years.   

LITR 369 | Creative Writing: Fiction 

Advanced writing workshop with focus on writing and revision of fiction: includes group discussions and individual conferences. Students will produce a professional portfolio of fiction. Prerequisite: LITR 269. 3 semester credit hours. Typically offered: Spring Term, Even Years.   

LITR 370 | Creative Writing: Poetry 

Advanced writing workshop with focus on writing and revision of poetry: includes group discussions and individual conferences. Students will produce a professional portfolio of poetry. Prerequisite: LITR 269. 3 semester credit hours. Typically offered: Spring Term, Odd   

LITR 385 | Major Authors and Genres

Detailed study of major writers and/or literary genres. Authors to be studied may include such figures as Jane Austen, Toni Morrison, Geoffrey Chaucer, or Zora Neale Hurston; genres to be studied may include the history of drama and the rise of the novel. Prerequisite: LITR 100. 3 semester credit hours. Typically offered: Spring Term, Odd Years.  

LITR 391 | Advanced Topics in Literature 

Advanced study of authors, themes, movements, and genres; attention to historical context. Sample topics: Literature and the Environment, Women Writers of Color, Satire, focused study of major author. Prerequisite: LITR 100. 3 semester credit hours. Typically offered: Periodically. Course Repeatable. Maximum number of units allowed 99.   

LITR 395 | Independent Study 

Students with interest in independent study of topics not offered in the curriculum may propose a plan of study in conjunction with a faculty member. Approval based on academic appropriateness and availability of resources. Prerequisite: LITR 100 and junior or senior standing. 3 semester credit hours. Department Consent Required. Course Repeatable. Maximum number of units allowed 99.