Spring Quarter Course Highlights

Hello, all! We’d like to interrupt your end-of-quarter whirlwind to turn your attention to some truly wonderful and exciting courses being offered by the English Department this Spring Quarter. All three of these courses are new to the catalog as of last week, and we hope you’ll consider them for a spot in your spring schedule. Please see the full catalog here and see below for details on each of the three courses.



This courses focuses on representations of families in modern drama. Modern playwrights from the late 19th and 20th centuries often sought to push the boundaries of acceptable subject matter presented on stage. Instead of presenting an ideal toward which the audience might aspire, playwrights began to explore the darker side of human relationships and asked their audiences to confront social problems or to recognize the absurdities of human existence. Playwrights shocked audiences, critics, and censors through their treatments of divorce, incest, controlling parents, and disobedient or disappointing children. These family problems are usually connected to larger social forces or metaphysical conditions. In addition to examining the subject matter of these plays, we will consider how modern playwrights experiment with form or technique in presenting the darker side of family life, first by attempting to bring audiences into private family spaces through the development of dramatic realism, and then by highlighting the strangeness of everyday family life through the influence of absurdism and other non-realist techniques. The reading list for the course includes several major modern plays from Europe, Britain, and America: Ibsen’s A Doll’s House; Strindberg’s Miss Julie; Bernard Shaw’s Mrs Warren’s Profession; Eugene O’Neill’s Desire Under the Elms; Lilian Hellman’s Little Foxes; Tennessee Williams’s Cat on a Hot Tin Roof; Samuel Beckett’s Endgame; Edward Albee, American Dream; August Wilson’s Joe Turner’s Come and Gone; and Martin McDonagh’s The Beauty Queen of Leenane.



This book production course examines our relationship with the book as a physical object: How do the material details of a book relate to the words on the page? How do the production choices a publisher makes impact the reader’s experience with the text? What are the steps, priorities, and challenges of book production? Using DePaul’s Big Shoulder project as a guide, students in this course will examine the book production process from the points of view of publisher, author, and editor. They will learn the vocabulary, methodologies, and practice of book production, examine different book production choices such as digital, DIY, and mass market, and become knowledgeable in contemporary book production culture and practice.


stack of magazines

In this course, students interested in a publishing career will explore the elements of good magazine writing and learn how to edit articles for print and on-line magazines. We will begin by considering a basic and all-important concept: What makes a good story? Students will sharpen their editing skills by first learning how to edit their own work. We will also consider story presentation, fact-checking, ethics, and line-editing. Readings from a variety of magazines will reinforce the ideas and themes discussed in class. We will read classics from the canon of great magazine writing and stories by new, young writers. The course will culminate in each student producing one story to be edited by the class in workshop.

Event: Career Panel for English Students Tonight!

Are you an English Major?

Would you like to write/edit professionally?

Is the sky blue somewhere in the world?

If you answered yes to one or more of these questions, then you should definitely be at the career panel for English students with evening.

When: 6:30-7:30 pm
Where: Arts and Letters Hall #211 

Panel Members:

gioia diliberto, depaulunderground.wordpress.comGioia Diliberto 

Chicago based writer and the author of five books – two historical novels and three biographies. Her acclaimed 1992 book, Hadley, the ground-breaking true story behind Ernest Hemingway’s memoir A Moveable Feast, was recently reissued as Paris Without End. Ms. Diliberto specializes in writing about women’s lives. She has been a contributor to many publications, from The New York Times and The Chicago Tribune, to Smithsonian and Vanity Fair, and she has been a judge for prominent literary contests, including The National Book Award. Her work has been translated into several languages, and The Collection, her novel set in Coco Chanel’s 1919 atelier, has been optioned for a movie.

Chris Green, depaulunderground.wordpress.comChris Green

Author of two books of poetry: Epiphany School and The Sky Over Walgreens. His poetry has appeared in such journals as Poetry, Verse, Court Green, North American Review, and RATTLE. He edited the anthology, A Writers’ Congress: Chicago Poets on Barack Obama’s Inauguration and is co-editor of Brute Neighbors: Urban Nature Poetry, Prose & Photography. He teaches in the English Department at DePaul University.

kathleen rooney, depaulunderground.wordpress.comKathleen Rooney

Founding editor of Rose Metal Press and the author, most recently, of the essay collection For You, For You I Am Trilling These Songs (Counterpoint, 2010) and the forthcoming novel in poems, Robinson Alone (Gold Wake Press, 2012). With Elisa Gabbert, she is the author of the collaborative poetry collection That Tiny Insane Voluptuousness (Otoliths, 2008).