Next Section Begins: April 15, 2019
Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein is a quintessential gothic novel, a foundational text in the history of science fiction, and a gripping monster story. It is beautiful, horrible, and philosophically engaging, has been continually in print since 1823, and has inspired countless imitations and adaptations. Find out what the fuss is about with me. Whether you’re reading Frankenstein for the first time or the tenth, this fascinating text is worth a closer look.
Next Section Begins: April 15, 2019
Bram Stoker’s Dracula is both a compelling story and a microcosm of Victorian fixations, hangups, obsessions, anxieties. Dracula has stalked the imagination of both literary and popular culture since its publication in 1900, as attested by its enduring popularity and the scores of adaptations that have been made since. Come read this novel with me, and discover both what is so seductive and what is so repulsive about Dracula.
In the Anglo-Saxon epic Beowulf, the title character fights three monsters: Grendel, Grendel’s mother, and a dragon. Together, we will explore the symbolic meaning of each of these monsters, show what they each have to do with each other, and in the process grapple with the oldest epic in the English language.
Stories of shapeshifters and werewolves go back centuries. Anglo-Norman writer Marie de France writes about Bisclavret in the twelfth century, but although her werewolf is the best-known it is not the only, or even the first tale of werewolf knights in the middle ages. In this course we will discover a number of medieval werewolves, from the moving to the horrifying, and begin to understand what makes werewolves so compelling.
Zombies are utterly modern monsters. Although reanimated corpses and spectres appear in older stories, as in the fifteenth century Three Living and the Three Dead, the zombie as we understand it now did not appear in fiction until the twentieth-century. Together we will explore film, prose, and comic books to explain what zombie stories tell us about our own times.
The Monster Package
You can register for a whole year of monster courses. Although these courses work well as stand-alone individual courses, they also complement each other and develop a whole, comprehensive course on monster literature. If you’d rather do things all the way, register for the whole package!
Courses will be repeated, subject to registration, so if you register for the Monster Package after some of the courses have already been completed you will be automatically registered for the next offering of the courses you.
Le Morte Darthur
Sir Thomas Malory’s Le Morte Darthur is the only work of medieval literature still commonly read by laypeople for pleasure. It represents an inflection point for Arthurian literature: it is the primary source to which virtually all adaptation or expansions of Arthurian legend return, and it is the lens through which scholars and amateurs alike have viewed older Arthurian legend for centuries. Come read Le Morte Darthur with me, and discover the adventure, the pathos, the mystery, and the humour of this amazing work.
Poetry Writing Workshop
Personalized, begins on your schedule
I am an award-winning poet. Take advantage of my expertise! In this two-week workshop I will develop a poetry-writing plan with you, provide you with poetry-writing exercises prompts, personally read, edit, and critique your poetry, and suggest venues and strategies for publication. When we are done you will have a small portfolio of poetry you can be proud of.
This workshop is individualized and private, and begins whenever you are ready for it.