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 2020

Taught By: Melissa Monroe

Section: A

CRN: 6811

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 Michel Houellebecq's vision of secular contemporary France taken over by a conservative Islamic government. 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 (Kierkegaard, Nietzsche, Buber, Jaspers, Maritain), but our principal focus is on literary authors such as (in addition to those named above) Franz Kafka, T.S. Eliot, Wallace Stevens, Albert Camus, James Baldwin, Isaac Bashevis Singer, Paul Celan, Anne Carson and Cynthia Ozick. 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. This class is open to undergraduates with permission from the instructor

College: New School for Social Research (GF)

Department: Creative Publishing (GPUB)

Campus: New York City (GV)

Course Format: Seminar (R)

Max Enrollment: 10

Add/Drop Deadline: February 4, 2020 (Tuesday)

Online Withdrawal Deadline: April 12, 2020 (Sunday)

Seats Available: Yes

Status: Open*

*Status information is updated every five 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: 1:00pm 1/26/2020 EST

Meeting Info:

Days: Wednesday

Times: 4:00pm - 5:50pm

Building: Fanton Hall 72 5th

Room: 713

Date Range: 1/22/2020 - 5/6/2020