Mar 26, 2023  
2019-2020 Undergraduate Catalog 
2019-2020 Undergraduate Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

ENGL 339 - Popular Fiction (3 credits)

(Prereq: ENGL 101  and ENGL 102  or ENGL 211  and one other 200 level ENGL class) What makes popular fiction popular? Why do we find pleasure in reading these texts? How are the various genres (detective, hard-boiled crime, western romance, horror, fantasy, science fiction, and thriller) structured and what cultural viewpoints do these formulas reinforce? As we read and discuss sample of each genre, including works by Agatha Christie, Raymond Chandler, Louis L’Amour, Stephen King, J.R.R. Tolkein, and Octavia Bulter, we will be looking at the texts through the critical lenses of literary theory, including psychoanalytic, feminist, Marxist, and structuralist approaches. We will also use this study of popular fiction to raise questions about authorship, readership, literary value, and the mass marketing strategies used to sell these texts.