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Organization, Regulations, and Courses 2023-24

ENGL 74.12 Garden Politics

This will be a senior seminar based on discussion of various literary, popular, critical, theoretical, and eco-critical texts related to gardens; we will consider issues of power involved in an apparently apolitical leisure activity. Students will be encouraged to find their own topics of interest for discussion and for a final paper modeled on journal articles. We begin where much of English-language culture begins, with the “Book of Genesis.” In that text, the Garden of Eden is the site of creation, and its story suggests questions about who owns a garden, what it means, whom it is for, and what can disrupt or destroy it. We will then move on to other questions of meaning and belonging suggested by gardens as topic and trope, beginning with some postcolonial gardens and critiques that explicitly comment upon the politics, ethics, and power relations encoded in these topics. We will also consider a broad range of related issues and discourses connecting humans and the environment. Literary authors will include Francis Hodgson Burnett, H.D., T.S. Eliot, Ross Gay, Derek Jarman, Jamaica Kincaid, Andrew Marvell, John Milton, Olive Senior.


Not open to students who have received credit for ENGL 64.02.

Degree Requirement Attributes

Dist:LIT; WCult:W

The Timetable of Class Meetings contains the most up-to-date information about a course. It includes not only the meeting time and instructor, but also its official distributive and/or world culture designation. This information supersedes any information you may see elsewhere, to include what may appear in this ORC/Catalog or on a department/program website. Note that course attributes may change term to term therefore those in effect are those (only) during the term in which you enroll in the course.

Department-Specific Course Categories

Senior Seminar: Course Group IV