Speculative Fiction (LIT2422.01)

Paul La Farge

For the last hundred years or so, speculative fiction has been a way for writers to imagine the future, but also, implicitly or explicitly, to think about the present. We’ll read genre, mainstream, and hard-to-classify works from the 1920s to the 2010s, with particular attention to the ways in which speculative fiction uses language to create a world, and the ways in which its created worlds cast light on gender, race, politics, and other human notions. We’ll read stories and novels by Evgeny Zamyatin, H.P. Lovecraft, Stanislaw Lem, Samuel R. Delany, Philip K. Dick, Ursula K. LeGuin, Russell Hoban, Octavia Butler, Kazuo Ishiguro, Cixin Liu, Yoss, and others. There will be both critical and creative writing assignments.

Learning Outcomes:
-- an awareness of the ways in which speculative fiction may shape our ideas about the present (and the future);

--a sense of the diversity of speculative fiction, both in terms of whose voices it may represent, and what forms it may take;

--the ability to write critically about speculative fiction, and more generally, to think critically/analytically about 'genre' fiction;

--some understanding of the techniques used by writers of speculative fiction to create plausible and/or compelling imagined worlds.

Delivery Method: Remotely accessible
Course Level: 2000-level
Credits: 4
T/F 4:10PM - 6:00PM (Full-term)
Maximum Enrollment: 45
Course Frequency: One time only

Categories: All courses , Literature , Remotely Accessible