Faith in Modern Literature: Supreme Fictions and Gods that Failed

New School for Social Research: Creative Publishing

Liberal Arts
Graduate Course
Degree Students (with Restrictions)
Faith in Modern Lit
Spring 2023
Taught By: Melissa Monroe
Section: A

CRN: 13288

Credits: 3

Reports of the death of God may or may not be exaggerated, but issues of faith and doubt, both religious and secular, have figured prominently in modern literature, from Samuel Beckett’s God-forsaken seekers to Graham Greene’s tormented whisky priests; from Flannery O’Connor’s “Christ-haunted South” to Cynthia Ozick's secular New York Jews, struggling to define their relationship to the tradition they've inherited. In this course, we look at works of modern fiction, poetry and drama that address either Judeo-Christian belief or the secular creeds which have been proposed as replacements for conventional religion. We read brief selections from philosophers and theologians (Nietzsche, Kierkegaard, Buber, Jaspers, Maritain), but our principal focus is on literary authors such as (in addition to those mentioned above) T.S. Eliot, Wallace Stevens, Albert Camus, Arthur Koestler, James Baldwin, Paul Celan, and Anne Carson. We consider not only the religious (or anti-religious) views expressed in the work, but also how the literary form of each text contributes to its meaning. Our discussion of style extends to student work; four essays are assigned over the course of the semester, and we look at effective examples of student writing.

College: New School for Social Research (GF)

Department: Creative Publishing (GPUB)

Campus: New York City (GV)

Course Format: Seminar (R)

Modality: In-Person

Max Enrollment: 8

Add/Drop Deadline: February 5, 2023 (Sunday)

Online Withdrawal Deadline: April 16, 2023 (Sunday)

Seats Available: No

Status: Closed*

* Status information is updated every few minutes. The status of this course may have changed since the last update. Open seats may have restrictions that will prevent some students from registering. Updated: 10:00am EDT 9/24/2023

Meeting Info:
Days: Wednesday
Times: 4:00pm - 5:50pm
Building: 6 East 16th Street
Room: 901
Date Range: 1/25/2023 - 5/10/2023