Saturday, August 13, 2016

The Literary Novel: Contemporary Fiction

Instructor: Tony D’Souza

Instructor Contact Info:
(Note that the first letter in Tony's email address is A)

Instructor Bio:
Tony D'Souza--MFA, University of Notre Dame
  • Author of three novels: Whiteman, The Konkans, and Mule
  • Sue Kaufman Prize from the American Academy of Arts and Letters for Whiteman
  • The Konkans was called a best novel of the year by the Washington Post
  • Mule was recently optioned for film by Warner Bros
  • Tony has contributed to The New Yorker, Esquire, Playboy, Salon, Granta, Mother Jones, McSweeney's, and is the recipient of a Guggenheim, an NEA, and an O. Henry
  • Website
Course NumberIMF 57301

Course Title: The Literary Novel: Contemporary Fiction

Available Sections: OL1, OL2, OL3

Class Type: Literature

Course Description:
This literature course explores the literary novel, including narrative arc, theme, character, style, and point of view. Critical discussion will focus on the way each component is employed. Students will analyze works from both a literary analysis perspective and a writer’s perspective.

We'll be looking at a really exciting list of novels from the past 20 years, including some very recently released novels. All of the novels for this course will be two hundred pages or less, something of a trend in contemporary publishing: Justin Torres' We The Animals, for example, clocks in at just 140 pages, but took the literary world by storm, won a slew of prizes and more than a little fame for the previously unknown Torres, and was a celebration of language and story in a relatively short novel-style. NY editors have told me that the shorter novel form has attracted attention in recent years because of changing tastes among readers and the wild success of some of these books. Paulo Coehlo's The Alchemist has sold tens of million copies and is considered a modern masterpiece. This manageable length will also allow us to experience a wide range of authors even in the short quarter system. We'll be traversing cultures, genders and voices with authors such as Jamaica Kincaid and Faiza Guene.

Textbook info (6 texts):
The Alchemist
Paulo Coehlo
HarperOne 2006

At the Bottom of the River
Jamaica Kincaid
Farrar, Straus & Giroux 2000

Kiffe Kiffe Tomorrow
Faiza Guene
Mariner 2006

The Restraint of Beasts
Magnus Mills
Scribner 1999

Dept. of Speculation
Jenny Offill
Vintage 2014

We the Animals
Justin Torres
Mariner 2012

Class Preview Date: September 19 (do not post in class until start date of 10/3; available early for review purposes only--email Beth to drop/add classes after open enrollment ends on 9/16)

Class Start DateOctober 3

First Assignment Info -- Click link to read important updated information before class begins, including the new video journal requirement for LU's student identity authentication policy.

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