Fall 2014

Beacon Hall 269

102-14 [1373] TR 11:00

102-18 [1377] TR 12:30


Kirk T. Hughes, PhD

Office Hours Beacon  229

MW 2:00-3:30




Literature & Composition: Love and Literature

Course Description

While love is one of the most common, popular, and celebrated dimensions of contemporary American experience, it has also been one of the most richly and diversely represented.  Happily, ours is not the first cultural moment to encounter heart rending questions about true love, right love, productive love, distracting love, lasting love, love of country, polite love, legal love, “the right-perfect-she/he’s-the one-for-me love.”

We’ll use literature this semester as a resource for figuring out this “love thing.”  Or, rather, we’ll use close reading, discussion, group presentations, writing, and performance related to a rich variety of texts to ask important questions:  How have different dimensions of love been represented? How do contemporary love texts relate to historically distant predecessors? How does language work? How do texts laud, inspire and instruct? How do they warn, intimidate, and prohibit.  Starting with contemporary love pop-love songs , we’ll first explore lyric love poetry--ancient and modern.  We’ll then consider several contemporary American authors in relation to each other and to several key classic texts.