MAPH students are not bound to classes offered through MAPH; they may choose classes from any department in the Humanities Division. However, these courses are designed with MAPH students in mind, and are taught by MAPH's Directors and Preceptors.
Winter 2018 Course Descriptions
Approaches to Art History
Wretchedness and the Early Nineteenth Century Novel
Romantic period novels teem with disconcerting life-forms having trouble with the business of living –outcasts, prisoners, madwomen, paupers, immortals, wretches, sufferers of many kinds. The most famous of these is the creature in Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein, but he is only one of many precarious figures that test the limits of sympathy, sociality, the biopolitical imagination and the boundaries of being alive. This course will investigate such creatures and their forms of suffering in British novels from the 1790s through the 1830s, asking what their function is in the development of the novel form; why they are often linked to the uncanny, the supernatural and the irrational; and how vulnerability, suffering and wretchedness work in relation to revolution, optimism and biopolitical rationality. Readings will include novels (Shelley, Godwin, Edgeworth among them), political philosophy and poetry of the period, and theoretical and critical work (Foucault, Butler, Agamben, among others).