Course Descriptions

01:013:231 Introduction to the Literatures of South Asia, Spring 2017

Course Offered: Spring 2017

Course Description

This course introduces students to the literature of the Indian subcontinent, which is situated within the broader region of South Asia (Bangladesh, India, the Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka). It surveys a selection of translated texts in various Indian languages from the classical to the postcolonial periods and explores a range of genres such as the epic, drama, poetry, essay writing, the short story, the novel, and film. In particular, we will examine how key cultural concepts have reappeared across Indian literary traditions over time, reimagined within the context of specific historical junctures and socio-linguistic networks. We will thus give attention to themes such as the conflict between tradition and modernity, man-woman relationships, communalism and caste conflict, colonialism and nationalism, problems of translation, and the intersections between ideas of religiosity and ideas of the literary.

Course Objectives

By the end of this course, students will develop a theoretical understanding of several major literary-historical movements in South Asia, especially India, and gain a sense of the richness and diversity of Indian literary traditions more generally. Furthermore, they will be able to draw connections across these traditions through close reading and critical analysis, demonstrating both the continuities between, as well as the historical and cultural specificities of, literary tropes and concepts. This course fulfills the SAS Core Curriculum Requirements for Arts and the Humanities, goals o and p.

This course fulfills one of the requirements for the AMESALL Major (Regional and Comparative Option) and the AMESALL MinorThis course also satisfies the SAS Core Curriculum Goals "Philosophical and Theoretical Issues" (AHo) and "Arts and Literatures" (AHp).