7 November 2012
TO: Graduate Students, Scandinavian Studies
FROM: Andy Nestingen and Marianne Stecher-Hansen
RE: Linked seminars in Winter quarter 2013
SCAND 504 (Critical Theory) & SCAND 508 (Topics in Prose)
During winter quarter 2013, we will be offering a linked pair of graduate seminars SCAND 504/SCAND 508: Violence in Theory – Violence in Prose. The aim of the linked courses is to create a deeper conversation and richer learning context than is possible in a single seminar. To create a link between the seminars, we have chosen theory and novels that share questions and themes, which the seminars will use to create a common framework. Each seminar is described below, with the idea that students may be interested in registering for both. For students enrolling in both seminars (10 credits), evaluation will be based on a single substantive research paper, which constitutes the primary assignment for both seminars.
SCAND 504: Critical Theory (cross-listed with CLIT 510B/ENGL 510B)
Andrew Nestingen, Tues./Thurs. 1:30 –3:20pm (314 Raitt)
Where does violence come from, and how has it been accounted for? This graduate seminar in critical theory explores these questions in three methodological frameworks: psychoanalysis, Marxism, and affect theory. The course will move from studying
canonical accounts of violence in each of these frameworks to critiques of such accounts. It also examines the cultural and historical contingency of violence. Reading includes Sara Ahmed, Hannah Arendt, Walter Benjamin, Franz Fanon, Sigmund Freud, Karl Marx, Jean-Paul Sartre, and Raymond Williams. The aim of the course’s organization is threefold: to introduce students to these important bodies of theory; to question and contrast how these theories make sense of violence; and
to tie the course closely to SCAND 508, which is organized around a parallel structure.
SCAND 508: Topics in Scandinavian Prose
Marianne Stecher-Hansen, Mon./Wed. 1:30 – 3:20pm (314 Raitt)
How does violence engage and affect readers of fiction? How is violence represented as a consequence and an expression of culture, history, society, and as an aspect of human psychology? During the winter quarter 2013, SCAND 508 will focus on canonical and contemporary texts in Nordic prose that speak to these questions. From blood-feuding in the Icelandic family saga to WWII novels about humanity’s war-mongering spirit, to contemporary novels preoccupied with gender and racial violence, this seminar will explore Nordic masterpieces within the framework of an engaging theoretical discourse
provided by the linked seminar, SCAND 504. Reading for SCAND 508 includes Laxdaela Saga and selected works by Knut Hamsun, J.V. Jensen, Sigrid Undset, Aino Kallas, Väino Linna, Pär Lagerkvist, and Karen Blixen as well as recent novels by Sofi
Osksanen, Christian Jungersen, and Jonas Khemiri.