Ethnic and Third World Literature
Ethnic and Third World Literature

Rebecca Macmillan


Ph.D. Candidate

Contact

Interests


Contemporary Poetry and Poetics / Theories of the Archive / Photography and Visual Culture / Feminist and Affect Studies

Courses


E 343P • Postmodern Literature

34975 • Spring 2018
Meets TTH 2:00PM-3:30PM PAR 103

E 343P  l  Postmodern Literature

 

Instructor:  Macmillan, R

Unique #:  34975

Semester:  Spring 2018

Cross-lists:  n/a

Restrictions:  n/a

Computer Instruction:  No

 

Prerequisites:  Nine semester hours of coursework in English or rhetoric and writing.

 

Description:  Over two decades ago, writer David Foster Wallace proclaimed, “Postmodern irony has become our environment.”  But just what counts as postmodern—or postmodernism—remains notoriously difficult to define.  Throughout the semester, we will investigate a range of stories, novels, poetry, critical writings, and works of visual art.  Guided by these texts, we will explore how postmodernism relates to a specific historical period, a selection of aesthetic concerns, and an effort to make sense of the world.  We will also question the circle of white male writers on which postmodernism often centers, and examine the genre’s relationship to issues of gender, race, and class.  Finally, we will consider the significance and circulation of postmodern literature in the present day.

 

Texts:  Readings may include: Jorge Luis Borges, Labyrinths (1962); John Barth, Lost in the Funhouse (1968); Lyn Hejinian, My Life (1980); Toni Morrison, Beloved (1987); David Foster Wallace, Girl with Curious Hair (1996); Colson Whitehead, John Henry Days (2001); Harryette Mullen, Sleeping with the Dictionary (2002); Alison Bechdel, Fun Home: A Family Tragicomic (2006); as well as selected reviews, interviews, and critical essays.

 

Requirements & Grading:  Final grades will be based on: a 4-5-page essay (draft and final) (25%), a 5-6-page essay (draft and final) (30%), several short writing exercises (20%), class participation (15%), and an in-class presentation (10%).  Attendance is mandatory; more than three absences may result in a reduction of the final grade.

E 371K • Modern And Contemporary Poetry

35125 • Spring 2018
Meets TTH 11:00AM-12:30PM PAR 304

E 371K  l  Modern and Contemporary Poetry

 

Instructor:  Macmillan, R

Unique #:  35125

Semester:  Spring 2018

Cross-lists:  n/a

Restrictions:  n/a

Computer Instruction:  No

 

Prerequisites:  Nine semester hours of coursework in English or rhetoric and writing.

 

Description: “Poetry is not only dream and vision;” writes Audre Lorde, “it is the skeleton architecture of our lives.”  This course will explore the role of poets and poetry in the twentieth- and early twenty-first-century by considering a selection of celebrated poetry volumes.  We will investigate these works with an eye toward the poetic practices they adopt and advance as well as the historical, political, and cultural contexts in which these works arise.  Class readings, writing, and discussion will also focus on the construction and effects of poetic language, forms, and devices.  Finally, we will pay particular attention to the role of poets and poetry in the present—asking how contemporary practitioners and artists are using poetry to address urgent present-day conditions such as racialized violence, inequalities based on gender and class, and environmental crisis.

 

Texts:  Readings may include: Gertrude Stein, Tender Buttons (1914); Langston Hughes, The Weary Blues (1926); Marianne Moore, Observations (1926); Allen Ginsberg, Howl and Other Poems (1956); Gwendolyn Brooks, In the Mecca (1968); Adrienne Rich, Diving Into the Wreck (1973); Lyn Hejinian, My Life (1980); Rafael Campo, What the Body Told (1996); Claudia Rankine, Don’t Let Me Be Lonely: An American Lyric (2004); Adrienne Su, Sanctuary (2006); Harryette Mullen, Urban Tumbleweed: Notes from a Tanka Diary (2013); Ada Limón, Bright Dead Things (2015); as well as selected reviews, interviews, and critical essays.

 

Requirements & Grading:  Final grades will be based on: a 5-6-page essay (draft and final) (35%), two exams (each 20%), several short writing exercises (15%), class participation and an in-class presentation (10%).  Attendance is mandatory; more than three absences may result in a reduction of the final grade.

E 314V • Women, Gender, Lit, Culture

34690 • Fall 2016
Meets MWF 11:00AM-12:00PM GDC 6.202
(also listed as WGS 301)

E 314V  l  6-Women, Gender, Literature, and Culture

 

Instructor:  Macmillan, R

Unique #:  34690

Semester:  Fall 2016

Cross-lists:  WGS 301

Restrictions:  n/a

Computer Instruction:  No

 

Prerequisites:  One of the following: E 603A, RHE 306, 306Q, or T C 603A.

 

Description:  “Stories are compasses and architecture;” notes the writer Rebecca Solnit, “we navigate by them, we build our sanctuaries and our prisons out of them, and to be without a story is to be lost in the vastness of a world that spreads in all directions like artic tundra or sea ice.”  This course will explore a range of contemporary women’s writing, focusing especially on literature that archives ordinary experiences tied to gender and encourages both social change and political engagement.  We will read a variety of stories, essays, poems, and experimental writings, asking:  How do issues of gender intersect with those related to race, class, and sexuality? How do literary works constellate and disrupt identity categories and their relationship to present-day inequalities?

 

The primary aim of this course is to help students develop and improve the critical reading, writing, and thinking skills needed for success in upper-division courses in English and other disciplines.  They will also gain practice in using the Oxford English Dictionary and other online research tools and print resources that support studies in the humanities.  Students will learn basic information literacy skills and models for approaching literature with various historical, generic, and cultural contexts in mind.

 

This course contains a writing flag.  The writing assignments in this course are arranged procedurally with a focus on invention, development through instructor and peer feedback, and revision; they will comprise a major part of the final grade.

Tentative Texts:  Natasha Trethewey’s Beyond Katrina (2010); Maggie Nelson’s The Argonauts (2015); Sandra Cisneros’s The House on Mango Street (1984); selected writings by Audre Lorde, Maxine Hong Kingston, and Eileen Myles.

Requirements & Grading:  There will be a series of 3 short essays, the first of which must be revised and resubmitted.  Subsequent essays may also be revised and resubmitted by arrangement with the Instructor (70% of the final grade).  Students will also be encouraged to write in a range of creative forms, including: blog posts, informal book reviews, and personal narratives (30% of the final grade).

RHE 309K • Rhetoric Of Photography

43585 • Spring 2015
Meets TTH 11:00AM-12:30PM PAR 204

Photographs may help us to remember, force us to look away, or move us to question the accuracy of what we see. This course will investigate the arguments photographs make, with special attention given to how the materiality of these images influences the stories they tell. We will look at the rhetoric of both digital and physical photographs as they proliferate in contemporary culture—for example, in news media, family albums, and on social networking sites. We will consider how photographs inform gender, racial, class, and political identities, as well as familial and public life. In doing so, this course will address a range of critical questions: To what extent are photographs subjective documents, framed by the concerns of their makers and the technologies used to produce them? To what political and social ends are photographs deployed? How is the rhetoric of photographs influenced by the personal or institutional archives in which these objects are housed?

Course readings will introduce students to a range of writing on photography, material culture, and visual rhetoric. Students will also have the chance to visit the Harry Ransom Center and to explore the archive’s photography holdings. In Unit 1, students will select a contemporary photographer of their choice to research, focusing on specific critical questions. In Unit 2, students will select and analyze a particular body of work by their chosen photographer, describing how this collection of photographs visually constructs its claims. In Unit 3, students will create a visual argument through the curation of their own photographs. In this final work, students may use, for example, a selection of recent digital images or aged family snapshots. Students will also reflect in writing on the argument their photographs make, and how the material form of these photographs contributes to their meaning.

Assignments and Grading

Short Writing Assignments – 20 %

Essay 1.1 – 10%

Essay 1.2 – 10%

Essay 2.1 – 10%

Essay 2.2 – 10%

Collection of Photographs & Essay 3.1 – 15%

Collection of Photographs & Essay 3.2 – 15%

Final Project Presentation – 10%

Required Texts and Course Readings

Lester Faigley, Diana George, Anna Palchik, and Cynthia Selfe, Picturing Texts (2004) 

Andrea A. Lunsford and John J. Ruszkiewicz, Everything’s An Argument (2013)

Andrea A. Lunsford, Easy Writer: A Pocket Reference (2010)

Course Packet – This will include selected works by authors such as Susan Sontag, bell hooks, Rebecca Solnit, Fred Ritchin, and Stephen Shore.

RHE 309K • Rhetoric Of Photography

44630 • Fall 2014
Meets TTH 9:30AM-11:00AM PAR 101

Photographs may help us to remember, force us to look away, or move us to question the accuracy of what we see. This course will investigate the arguments photographs make, with special attention given to how the materiality of these images influences the stories they tell. We will look at the rhetoric of both digital and physical photographs as they proliferate in contemporary culture—for example, in news media, family albums, and on social networking sites. We will consider how photographs inform gender, racial, class, and political identities, as well as familial and public life. In doing so, this course will address a range of critical questions: To what extent are photographs subjective documents, framed by the concerns of their makers and the technologies used to produce them? To what political and social ends are photographs deployed? How is the rhetoric of photographs influenced by the personal or institutional archives in which these objects are housed?

Course readings will introduce students to a range of writing on photography, material culture, and visual rhetoric. Students will also have the chance to visit the Harry Ransom Center and to explore the archive’s photography holdings. In Unit 1, students will select a contemporary photographer of their choice to research, focusing on specific critical questions. In Unit 2, students will select and analyze a particular body of work by their chosen photographer, describing how this collection of photographs visually constructs its claims. In Unit 3, students will create a visual argument through the curation of their own photographs. In this final work, students may use, for example, a selection of recent digital images or aged family snapshots. Students will also reflect in writing on the argument their photographs make, and how the material form of these photographs contributes to their meaning.

Assignments and Grading

Short Writing Assignments – 20 %

Essay 1.1 – 10%

Essay 1.2 – 10%

Essay 2.1 – 10%

Essay 2.2 – 10%

Collection of Photographs & Essay 3.1 – 15%

Collection of Photographs & Essay 3.2 – 15%

Final Project Presentation – 10%

Required Texts and Course Readings

Lester Faigley, Diana George, Anna Palchik, and Cynthia Selfe, Picturing Texts (2004) 

Andrea A. Lunsford and John J. Ruszkiewicz, Everything’s An Argument (2013)

Andrea A. Lunsford, Easy Writer: A Pocket Reference (2010)

Course Packet – This will include selected works by authors such as Susan Sontag, bell hooks, Rebecca Solnit, Fred Ritchin, and Stephen Shore.

RHE S309K • Rhetoric Of Photography

87315 • Summer 2014
Meets MTWTHF 10:00AM-11:30AM GAR 3.116

Photographs may help us to remember, force us to look away, or move us to question the accuracy of what we see. This course will investigate the arguments photographs make, with special attention given to how the materiality of these images influences the stories they tell. We will look at the rhetoric of both digital and physical photographs as they proliferate in contemporary culture—for example, in news media, family albums, and on social networking sites. We will consider how photographs inform gender, racial, class, and political identities, as well as familial and public life. In doing so, this course will address a range of critical questions: To what extent are photographs subjective documents, framed by the concerns of their makers and the technologies used to produce them? To what political and social ends are photographs deployed? How is the rhetoric of photographs influenced by the personal or institutional archives in which these objects are housed?

Course readings will introduce students to a range of writing on photography, material culture, and visual rhetoric. Students will also have the chance to visit the Harry Ransom Center and to explore the archive’s photography holdings. In Unit 1, students will select a contemporary photographer of their choice to research, focusing on specific critical questions. In Unit 2, students will select and analyze a particular body of work by their chosen photographer, describing how this collection of photographs visually constructs its claims. In Unit 3, students will create a visual argument through the curation of their own photographs. In this final work, students may use, for example, a selection of recent digital images or aged family snapshots. Students will also reflect in writing on the argument their photographs make, and how the material form of these photographs contributes to their meaning.

Assignments and Grading

Short Writing Assignments – 20 %

Essay 1.1 – 10%

Essay 1.2 – 10%

Essay 2.1 – 10%

Essay 2.2 – 10%

Collection of Photographs & Essay 3.1 – 15%

Collection of Photographs & Essay 3.2 – 15%

Final Project Presentation – 10%

Required Texts and Course Readings

Lester Faigley, Diana George, Anna Palchik, and Cynthia Selfe, Picturing Texts (2004) 

Andrea A. Lunsford and John J. Ruszkiewicz, Everything’s An Argument (2013)

Andrea A. Lunsford, Easy Writer: A Pocket Reference (2010)

Course Packet – This will include selected works by authors such as Susan Sontag, bell hooks, Rebecca Solnit, Fred Ritchin, and Stephen Shore.

Profile Pages