SETS Graduate Courses | College of Arts

SETS Graduate Courses

School of English and Theatre Studies Tentative Graduate Course Offerings 2022*

*Note: All courses are subject to change without notice. Official course outlines will be provided to students in the first week of classes. 

Winter 2022 Course Outlines

COURSE CODE COURSE TITLE DESCRIPTION INSTRUCTOR DAY/TIME
ENGL*6201 Canadian Literary Humanism

This course will draw on the work of Sylvia Wynter, Frantz Fanon, Zygmunt Bauman, and others, to explore the relationship between visions of the human and literary expression in Canadian contexts. We will look at canonical Canadian authors as well as lesser-known writers in order to understand how Canadian writers have both endorsed and resisted settler-colonial imaginaries. We will also think about the relationship between the humanities more generally and a particular vision of what it means to be human.

Dr. Paul Barrett

LEC Tues

02:30PM - 05:20PM

MCKN, Room 314

ENGL*6431 Topics in 19-Century Literature

While we often dismiss the occult or the supernatural in literature as simple entertainment, this course encourages students to examine how literary works employ the occult and the supernatural in order to address issues of power, race, gender, imperialism and modernity. By examining three figures of the undead—the mummy, the ghost, and the vampire—students will gain a historical understanding of how literature of the occult and the supernatural critiqued, reaffirmed or revised nineteenth-century theories of progress, social order, and science. 

Dr. Pablo Ramirez

LEC Wed

02:30PM - 05:20PM

MCKN, Room 317

ENGL*6811 Cli-Fi, Environmental Literature and Ecocriticism

This course will focus on Canadian, American, and Australian contemporary Environmental Literature as well as Anthropocene Fiction that combines Climate and Science Fiction, and Donna Haraway’s challenge to this term with her own: Chthulucene.  Our study of this literature will be impelled by Adam Trexler’s questions: ‘How does living in the Anthropocene reconfigure human economies and ecosystems? How does climate change alter the orms and potentialities of art and cultural narrative? Western traditions and theories relating to environmental thinking such as science and Deism, Deep Ecology, Posthumanism, and the idea of Post-Nature (or that nature no longer exists) will be read against Indigenous storytelling about earth justice, and critics like Haraway who story new ways of being with companion species on this damaged Earth. Besides applying these approaches to stories in our critical analyses, we will also explore the emotional impact of climate change, and its myriad implications for young people facing life on a degraded planet where shortages of resources also mean greater inequality and increased violence.        

Dr. Martha Nandorfy

SEM Mon

02:30PM - 05:20PM

MCKN, Room 317

THST*6210 Devising

This course is a hybrid seminar-lab that invites students to engage in performance creation as artist-scholars. We will look at a range of approaches to artistic research within theatre and performance studies through readings/viewings and will actively engage in performing/researching via practical workshops and student performance projects. Throughout the course, we will consider a number of questions, including:

  • What is artistic research? What are the stakes of this mode of knowledge making?
  • How can we document artistic research? What is impossible to document/capture?
  • How do we articulate artistic research? What different approaches do artists take to sharing artistic research projects?
  • What are the values/challenges of collaboration in artistic research?
  • What role does site play in performance research?
  • How do we account for the positionality of the researcher in artistic research? 
  • How can artistic research be a form of community engaged art making? 

Each student will be involved with a performance creation project—which can be done solo or in groups—as deviser, director, designer, performer or dramaturg. Performance projects will allow students to delve into their own research interests, while also considering the values and challenges of actively connecting theory and practice. 

Dr. Kimberley McLeod

LEC Tues

11:30AM - 02:20PM

MASS, Room 205

LAB Fri

01:00PM - 02:50PM

MASS, Room 205

THST*6250 Bodies Spaces Performance

By providing a collection of lenses and the application of various somatic approaches, this course reviews arts-based methods within a performance studies context. All class are “workshops" in the senses, body movement, structural anatomy, pleasure, engagement, self-management, trust. In this creative laboratory, learners apply movement resources to slow down combining movement meditation, sonic ecologies, eco-Nature inquiries, and expressive art/play/writing. By considering recent scientific advances, the course makes links made between the body and the brain/mind and the application (exercise, operation, play) of movement as a means to activate the brain’s natural neuroplasticity. Neuroplastic principles for interdisciplinary movement addresses the roles of failure, environment and reward in motor learning and skills acquisition, as well as the value and tools for building a durable practice focusing on health and wellbeing and longevity; applications of somatic theory and practice promote tactics for interventionist research and social change. Further, we engage in an inquiry that regards the body and place/space as a transactional process requiring mutual interdependence and sympoiesis within contexts of current post-human, Anthropecene and Chthulucene discourses.

The pedagogy relies on techniques of improvisation, the Alexander Technique, the Franklin method, Moshe Feldenkrais’ method, Kinesiology, Capoeira, Contact Improvisation, Body-Mind Centering, Mindfulness, as well as conceptions of voice, movement, culture, self and Other. Through an application of these and other somatic approaches, students are challenged to explore (and perhaps dissolve or annul) the nature of physiological habits. Learners cocreate frameworks of dynamic rhythm, rediscovering bio mechanic mobilities and other means that facilitate access to the body/mind’s sensorium. Our applications of inter-culturally informed methods seek to decolonize, imagining speculative futures of learning, humanity, and a range of eco-perceptual possibilities.

The course examines criteria for evaluating arts-based research methods and seeks to establish rigour in research creation (as defined by SSHRC) regardless of the arts modality; the psychology of perception suggests the existence of a common human cognitive system that treats all or most sensorily conveyed meanings in the same way. As per theories of semiotics, as all signs are also texts/objects of perception, the modality (in semiotic terms) will determine at least part of its nature, meaning, and impact. The aim of our arts-based research is to advocate and promote current and emerging research practices and subject, including (but not limited to) research into materials, processes, methods, concepts, aesthetic, and style, regardless of disciplinary area or representational form. 

Dr. Mark Lipton

LEC Mon

07:00PM - 09:50PM

MASS, Room 205

THST*6320 Performance and Difference In a recent interview, playwright Branden Jacobs-Jenkins observes, "[F]or whatever reason, writing for the theatre has always been rooted in reinterpretation and adaptation. So, actually the roots of what we do has always been the retelling or reframing of stories that exist already, because the success of the theatre is based on the success of a social understanding." This graduate seminar will explore the practice of reinterpretation and adaptation in contemporary theatre with an eye in particular to the types of "social understanding" that are produced with respect to questions of race both in canonical plays and in their twenty-first century successors by playwrights of color. Particular attention will be paid in our discussions to how each play mediates conceptions of race in its time and what types of theatrical forms, technologies, and techniques are used to convey those representations. The general calendar title “Performance and Difference” will be narrowly applied to the performance of blackness across a wide range of British and American plays. Questions of indigeneity will arise in relation to a limited number of scenarios, but for reasons of time and complexity, we will not be addressing cognate forms of social difference and the ascription of alterity Dr. Daniel O'Quinn

LEC Mon

02:30PM - 05:20PM

ALEX, Room 309

*Note: All courses are subject to change without notice. Official course outlines will be provided to students in the first week of classes.