Fall 2014

Corporeal States:  Body, Nation, Text in Modern African Literature

Listed in: Black Studies, as BLST-412  |  English, as ENGL-471  |  Sexuality, Women's and Gender Studies, as SWAG-471


C. Rhonda Cobham-Sander (Section 01)


(Offered as ENGL 471, BLST 412 [A], and SWAG 471.)  How do literary texts transmute human bodies into subjects–gendered subjects, colonial subjects, disabled subjects, terrorists, cultural icons, cyborgs?  And what happens when we use ideas about the body to represent the body politic? In this course we will examine how modern African writers utilize a variety of genres, including ethnographic writing, Kung Fu movies, pornography, traditional epic, and graffiti, to challenge our notions of what counts as a body, as a nation, or as a text. Alongside novels by established writers, we will consider recent books and digital creations by Chimamanda Adichie, Chris Abani, Teju Cole, Zakes Mda, Werewere Liking, and Taiye Selasi.

Open to juniors and seniors.  Limited to 15 students.  Fall semester.  Professor Cobham-Sander.

If Overenrolled: Preference given to junior and senior majors.


2022-23: Not offered
Other years: Offered in Fall 2014