2020-21 Pomona College Catalog 
    
    Sep 28, 2021  
2020-21 Pomona College Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG] Use the dropdown above to select the current 2020-21 catalog.

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ENGL010 PO - Introduction to Close Reading

When Offered: Offered alternate years; next offered fall 2020
Instructor(s): C. Rosenfeld
This course will focus on the central method of literary criticism known as “close reading.” Close reading begins, not with the question, “What do these words mean?” but instead, the question, “What do these words say?” And then, “What if these words mean just what they say?” And then, “What would have to be true about the world in which this poem or story operates in order for these words to mean just what they say?” Through our iterative encounter with these and related questions, we will consider how literature compels us to revise what we know, or think we know, about the world and how it operates. It is the central argument of this class that close reading allows us to understand poetic and fictional worlds according to their discrete and unique logic; it is the political gamble of this course that close reading the worlds of fiction and poetry permits us to see ‘this’ world; ‘the actual, real, or historical world’ in its capacity to be otherwise. Readings will range from Isabella Whitney, George Herbert, and John Donne to Shirley Jackson, Aimee Bender, and Carmen Maria Machado. We will watch a few films (Hitchcock’s Rope and Lamorisse’s The Red Balloon) and we will read example of close reading from the visual arts (e.g. T.J. Clark).
Satisfies the following General Education Requirement(s), subject to conditions explained in the Degree Requirements section of this Catalog:
Area 1



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