Ethnic and Third World Literature
Ethnic and Third World Literature

Lisa Gulesserian


Lisa Gulesserian

Interests


Diaspora Studies, Postmemory, Anglophone Literature, Postcolonial Literature, Urban Theory

Biography


Lisa Gulesserian is a graduate student in the Department of English at the University of Texas at Austin. To see her publications and teaching experience, please navigate to the links listed under "PROFILE" to the right.

Courses


E F344L • Dark Pasts: Film/Graph Nov/Lit

83195 • Summer 2014
Meets MTWTHF 1:00PM-2:30PM PAR 105

Instructor:  Gulesserian, L

Unique #:  83195

Semester:  Summer 2014, first session

Cross-lists:  n/a

Flags:  n/a

Computer Instruction:  No

Prerequisites: C L 315, E 603B, 316K, or T C 603B.

Description:

“The past is never dead. It’s not even past.”

--William Faulkner

Whether distant or recent, the past isn’t dead—it is alive and well in our present. By vehemently criticizing “the dark ages” or merely telling a story that “is not a story to pass on,” many authors and filmmakers keep the past alive. In this course, we will feel the pulse of painful pasts in books, graphic novels, and films. Through close reading and critical viewing, we will uncover versions of personal loss (of family, of life) and historical traumas (such as the Armenian Genocide and the Holocaust). In our endeavor to analyze various imaginative restorations of the past from around the globe, we will explore questions such as: How can artists represent difficult, forgotten, or unwanted histories? Does media affect the way we remember and imagine the past? What role does collective memory play in fictional narratives (and vice versa)? How can there be multiple versions of the same painful history? What happens when we reimagine a distant past? Ultimately, we will see that the past is “not even past” because literature and film continually resuscitate it for future generations.

Tentative Reading List: We will look at graphic novels (such as Art Spiegelman’s Maus), novels (including Micheline Aharonian Marcom’s Three Apples Fell from Heaven and Russell Banks’s The Sweet Hereafter), and films (such as Atom Egoyan’s The Sweet Hereafter and Ararat, along with Roberto Benigni’s Life Is Beautiful and Liev Schreiber’s Everything Is Illuminated).

Requirements & Grading: Major assignments will include two short analyses (2-3 pages each), worth 20% together; one longer paper (5-8 pages) with one peer review session and mandatory revision, worth 35% together; a group presentation, worth 20%; and biweekly response blog posts and in-class participation, worth 25% together.

E 314L • Banned Books And Novel Ideas

34656 • Fall 2012
Meets TTH 2:00PM-3:30PM FAC 7

Instructor:  Gulesserian, L            Areas:  -- / A

Unique #:  34656            Flags:  Writing

Semester:  Fall 2012            Restrictions:  n/a

Cross-lists:  n/a            Computer Instruction:  Yes

Prerequisites: E 603A, RHE 306, 306Q, or T C 603A.

Description: Cultural productions have been banned and censored for a number of reasons, some expected—profanity, lewdness, vulgarity, sacrilege—and some surprising—retelling the past. This course will attend to books, graphic novels, short stories, and films that have caused public controversy because of their unique representations of historical events. Whether nostalgically revisiting “the good old days,” vehemently criticizing “the dark ages,” or merely telling a story that “is not a story to pass on,” many from England, India, South Africa, Iran, Antigua, Lebanon, and America have been banned, censored, or criticized for their historical imaginings. Through close reading and critical writing using formal, historical, and cultural approaches to literature, we will work to uncover some versions of the past that have gotten a few authors in trouble. The Oxford English Dictionary and other resources essential to literary study will aid us in this endeavor and will also help prepare you for upper-division courses in various disciplines. The stakes are high when representing difficult, forgotten, or unwanted stories from the past—in this course, we will examine why reimagining the past in cultural productions around the globe was, and continues to be, so fraught.

Texts: Fictional works may include Aphra Behn’s Oroonoko (1688), Jonathan Swift’s Gulliver’s Travels (1726), Joseph Conrad’s Heart of Darkness (1899), Nadine Gordimer’s Burger’s Daughter (1979), Toni Morrison’s Beloved (1987), Salman Rushdie’s The Satanic Verses (1988), Jamaica Kincaid’s A Small Place (1988), Marjane Satrapi’s Persepolis (2000), and Ari Folman’s Waltz with Bashir (2008). Critical works may include Michel-Rolph Trouillot’s Silencing the Past (1997).

Requirements & Grading: One group presentation on recent scholarship of an assigned reading; three short critical essays (2-4 pages each); one research paper (5-8 pages); regular blog posts related to the readings in our course, and the Learning Record midterm and final evaluations. Revision is mandatory for the research paper and two of the three short critical essays. Participation in classroom discussion is also a requirement.

Grades in this course are determined on the basis of the Learning Record, which accompanies a portfolio of work presented at the midterm and at the end of the course. These portfolios present a selection of student work, both formal and informal, completed during the semester; ongoing observations about student learning; and midterm and final evaluations of the student’s development across five dimensions of learning: confidence and independence, knowledge and understanding, skills and strategies, use of prior and emerging experience, and reflectiveness. This development is centered around the major strands of work in the course: reading, writing process, presentation, digital literacy, and collaboration. At the midterm and the final, students will evaluate their performance in the course and argue for the grade they deserve. Final grades will be based on how well students demonstrate and provide evidence for development in their written grade evaluations.

RHE 309K • Rhetoric Of Suburbs And Slums

44125 • Spring 2012
Meets TTH 12:30PM-2:00PM PAR 6

Depending on who you ask, London can be a cultural mecca or a den of vice, Los Angeles can be a palm tree paradise or a polluted suburb, and Lagos can be a dangerous slum or an exciting place where residents reclaim space for their own uses. In this course, we will identify and analyze the discrepant ways that we think and feel about cities (and their respective suburbs and slums) around the world. We’ll begin our exploration by looking at explicit arguments made about (sub-)urban places by urban planners, environmentalists, advertisers, architects, and citizens. With a firm grasp of the various arguments made about these places, we’ll then move into uncovering implied arguments made about cities, suburbs, and slums by artists, musicians, writers, and filmmakers. We’ll end our journey through these locales with you and your peers adding to the conversation. By listening to The Arcade Fire’s recent album The Suburbs, by reading about favelas in Mike Davis’ work, by looking at advertisements for high-rise condos in Austin, and by watching Slumdog Millionaire, we will see how urban, suburban, or slum developments are connected. For better or for worse, with the rapid urbanization of our planet, cities, suburbs, and slums are here to stay. What we say about the nature, value, and future of these places is just as important.

Assignments and Grading

Formal assignments for this course are as follows:

- One 4-7 page rhetorical analysis paper of an explicit argument (with peer review and additional revision)

- One 4-7 page analysis paper of an implicit argument (with peer review and additional revision)

- One group argument project using multimedia

Grades in this course are determined on the basis of the Learning Record, which accompanies a portfolio of work presented at the midterm and at the end of the course. These portfolios present a selection of student work, both formal and informal, completed during the semester, ongoing observations about student learning, and analysis of student work and interpretations with respect to the student’s development across five dimensions of learning: confidence and independence, knowledge and understanding, skills and strategies, use of prior and emerging experience, and reflectiveness. This development centers around the major strands of work in the course: reading, rhetoric, writing, digital literacy, and collaboration. The criteria for grades are posted at the Learning Record web site, http://www.learningrecord.org/.

Required Texts

Everything’s an Argument. Lunsford and Ruszkiewicz. Bedford/St. Martin’s, 2010.

Easy Writer:  A Pocket Reference. Third or Fourth Edition.  Lunsford. Bedford/St. Martin’s, 2009/2010.

Course Packet, to include excerpted writings from Jane Jacobs, Mike Davis, Robert Moses, James Howard Kunstler, Rem Koolhaas, and the like.

RHE 309K • Rhetoric Of Suburbs And Slums

43990 • Fall 2011
Meets TTH 2:00PM-3:30PM PAR 6

Depending on who you ask, London can be a cultural mecca or a den of vice, Los Angeles can be a palm tree paradise or a polluted suburb, and Lagos can be a dangerous slum or an exciting place where residents reclaim space for their own uses. In this course, we will identify and analyze the discrepant ways that we think and feel about cities (and their respective suburbs and slums) around the world. We’ll begin our exploration by looking at explicit arguments made about (sub-)urban places by urban planners, environmentalists, advertisers, architects, and citizens. With a firm grasp of the various arguments made about these places, we’ll then move into uncovering implied arguments made about cities, suburbs, and slums by artists, musicians, writers, and filmmakers. We’ll end our journey through these locales with you and your peers adding to the conversation. By listening to The Arcade Fire’s recent album The Suburbs, by reading about favelas in Mike Davis’ work, by looking at advertisements for high-rise condos in Austin, and by watching Slumdog Millionaire, we will see how urban, suburban, or slum developments are connected. For better or for worse, with the rapid urbanization of our planet, cities, suburbs, and slums are here to stay. What we say about the nature, value, and future of these places is just as important.

Assignments and Grading

Formal assignments for this course are as follows:

- One 4-7 page rhetorical analysis paper of an explicit argument (with peer review and additional revision)

- One 4-7 page analysis paper of an implicit argument (with peer review and additional revision)

- One group argument project using multimedia

Grades in this course are determined on the basis of the Learning Record, which accompanies a portfolio of work presented at the midterm and at the end of the course. These portfolios present a selection of student work, both formal and informal, completed during the semester, ongoing observations about student learning, and analysis of student work and interpretations with respect to the student’s development across five dimensions of learning: confidence and independence, knowledge and understanding, skills and strategies, use of prior and emerging experience, and reflectiveness. This development centers around the major strands of work in the course: reading, rhetoric, writing, digital literacy, and collaboration. The criteria for grades are posted at the Learning Record web site, http://www.learningrecord.org/.

Required Texts

Everything’s an Argument. Lunsford and Ruszkiewicz. Bedford/St. Martin’s, 2010.

Easy Writer:  A Pocket Reference. Third or Fourth Edition.  Lunsford. Bedford/St. Martin’s, 2009/2010.

Course Packet, to include excerpted writings from Jane Jacobs, Mike Davis, Robert Moses, James Howard Kunstler, Rem Koolhaas, and the like.

RHE S309S • Crit Read And Persuasive Writ

88065 • Summer 2011
Meets MTWTHF 10:00AM-11:30AM PAR 204

Nineteenth-century British explorer Dr. David Livingstone once said, “It is far easier to travel than to write about it.” Although Dr. Livingstone’s wariness about describing one’s travels might have some truth to it, today’s travel guides, travel forums, travel blogs, travel magazines, newspaper travel sections, and television travel channels seem to say otherwise. In this course, we will study “travelers” as a “public”—a community of people brought together by a common concern—by looking at the various ways that they represent, discuss, and debate traveling. We will begin by familiarizing ourselves with the public discourse about travel across a variety of genres. After choosing one argument about travel to analyze rhetorically, you will then evaluate another argument found through your own research by determining the generic conventions and evaluation criteria of your chosen source. By the end of this course, you will join the public of travelers and make an argument about traveling that adheres to the expectations of your chosen genre. In this way, we will study rhetoric as a civic art that not only increases your critical abilities in terms of public texts, but also prepares you to write to and for a public in a respectful, knowledgeable, and effective way.

Assignments and Grading Criteria

Formal assignments for this course are as follows:

•    Short writing assignments (TBD, to include assignments such as annotated bibliographies, reading responses, Diigo posts, & research summaries)

•    One 4-7 page rhetorical analysis paper (with peer review and additional revision)

•    One 5-8 page argument evaluation paper (with peer review and additional revision)

•    One 5-8 page argument paper (or equivalent multimedia project) in a group newspaper/magazine (or forum/television channel, if using media) (with peer review)

Grades in this course are determined on the basis of the Learning Record, which accompanies a portfolio of work presented at the midterm and at the end of the course. These portfolios present a selection of student work, both formal and informal, completed during the semester, ongoing observations about student learning, and analysis of student work and interpretations with respect to the student’s development across five dimensions of learning: confidence and independence, knowledge and understanding, skills and strategies, use of prior and emerging experience, and reflectiveness. This development centers around the major strands of work in the course: reading, rhetoric, writing, digital literacy, and research. The criteria for grades are posted at the Learning Record web site, http://www.learningrecord.org/.

Required Texts

•    Everything’s an Argument. Lunsford and Ruszkiewicz. Bedford/St. Martin’s, 2010.

•    Easy Writer:  A Pocket Reference. Third or Fourth Edition. Lunsford. Bedford/St. Martin’s, 2009/2010.

•    Excerpted writings and videos from the New York Times “Travel” section, the Travel Channel, Alain de Botton, Susan Sontag, Jamaica Kincaid, and the like.

Profile Pages