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Minnesota State University, Mankato
Minnesota State University, Mankato

Undergraduate Courses

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From adolescent literature to the world novel, you’ll find a wide range of topics and perspectives to explore in our courses. Critical exploration of literary works from a variety of genres, cultural groups, and historical periods will equip you with insights and skills that last a lifetime.

Courses are listed sequentially by number:

  • 100- and 200-level courses are introductory-level courses
  • 300- and 400-level courses are upper-division, undergraduate courses
  • 500-level courses are graduate courses (may have 400-level students in the course) (see Graduate Courses)
  • 600-level courses are graduate courses (graduate students only) (see Graduate Courses)


Undergraduate (100- and 200-level)

110: Introduction to Literature. Study and analysis of elements of prose, poetry and drama in English from earlier periods through contemporary. Emphasizes critical reading of literature. May include such genres as short story, novel, memoir, nonfiction, biography, autobiography, poem, play, screenplay. GE-6

112W: Introduction to Poetry and Drama.  Study and analysis of elements of poetic and dramatic literature in English, including translations, from earlier periods through contemporary. Emphasizes critical reading of and writing about literature. GE-6
Prereq: ENG 101

113W: Introduction to Prose Literature. Study and analysis of prose literature in English from earlier periods through contemporary. Works will be chosen from the following forms: short stories, essays, novellas, novels, memoirs, autobiographies, and other long forms. Emphasizes critical reading of and writing about literature. GE-6
Prereq: ENG 101 

118: Diverse Cultures in Literature and Film.  Students in this course learn about diverse peoples and societies by reading and writing about novels, non-fiction, poetry, and/or films. GE-6, GE-7; Diverse Cultures - Purple

125: International Children's Literature.  The course purpose is to increase students' knowledge of international children's literature that is written in English or translated into English. Students will be introduced to individual books, authors, and methods of responding to literature. This course studies children's literature set in countries such as Afghanistan, WWII Germany, and the Dominican Republic. GE-6, GE-7; Diverse Cultures - Purple

146: Introduction to Shakespeare.  This course will introduce students to Shakespeare's plays (histories, tragedies, and comedies) and sonnets. Students will read, analyze, and develop interpretations of these works, learning about Shakespeare's language, historical situations, and world views. GE-6, GE-8

211W: Perspectives in Literature and Human Diversity.  Courses will explore various specialized topics in literature to increase understanding of literary contributions made by under-represented peoples, to develop critical thinking, reading, and writing skills, and to increase appreciation of the diversity of human experience. Typical courses include: Multicultural Literature, Women’s Literature. May be repeated as topics change.  GE-6, GE-7; Diverse Cultures - Purple

Prereq: ENG 101

212W: Perspectives in World Literature. Courses will introduce students to works of literature from a variety of world cultures. Designed to increase knowledge of world cultures and appreciation and understanding of cultural differences in representation, and in seeing, believing, and being. Emphasizes critical thinking, reading, and writing. GE-6, GE-8
Pre: ENG 101 

213W: Perspectives: Ethics and Civic Responsibility in Literature.  Courses will focus on some characteristic ways in which literature addresses and explores the ethical dimensions of citizenship and the relationships between works and their cultural contexts. Emphasizes critical thinking, reading and writing. Typical courses include: War and Peace; Utopias and Dystopias. May be repeated as topics change. GE-6, GE-9
Pre: ENG 101

215: Topics in Literature.  Courses will explore specialized topics in literature. May be repeated as topics change. GE-6
Pre: ENG 101

275W: Introduction To Literary Studies.   An introduction to literary genre and to the techniques of writing about literature.

Prereq: ENG 101

Undergraduate (300- and 400-level)

316: Topics in Literature.  Topic-oriented course in literature. May be repeated with change of topic.

318: Multicultural Literature. Specific topics in multicultural literature with detailed study of a particular period, region, or group in the United States and their contributions to a diverse literature. Topics include African American Literature, American Indian Literature, Southern Writers of Color, and others. May be repeated as topics change.  Diverse Cultures - Purple

319: Animals and Literature. Examines literature focusing on animals from various time periods, genres, and geographical locations. By analyzing the role of animals in various literary texts, students will develop a greater understanding of human-animal interactions and relationships and related ethical and theoretical issues. This is a required course for the Human-Animal Studies minor.

320: British Literature to 1785. Representative works from British literature encompassing Beowulf through the Eighteenth Century.
Prereq: ENG 275

321: British Literature 1785-Present. Representative works from British Literature, the Romantic Period to the present.
Prereq: ENG 275

325: Children’s Literature. Introduction to authors, genres, illustrations, and works of literature published for elementary age children. Current and classic works.

327: American Literature to 1865. A survey of American Literature from its beginnings to the end of the Civil War.
Preoreq: ENG 275

328: American Literature: 1865 to the Present. A survey of American Literature from the end of the Civil War to the present.
Pre or Coreq: ENG 275

402W: Gender in Literature.  Selected topics course on literature by and about women. Diverse Cultures - Purple

403W: Selected Authors.  Studies the works of three or fewer authors in depth. Content changes. May be repeated.

405: Shakespeare: Comedies and Histories.  A study of Shakespeare’s comedies and histories. This course will run for a half-semester.

406: Shakespeare: Tragedies.  A study of Shakespeare’s tragedies. This course will run for a half-semester.

410: 21st-Century Literature.  Study of literature from the 21st century, with an emphasis on how these works represent contemporary concerns.
Pre: ENG 275

412W: Arab American Literature. Critically examines a wide array of literature, non-fiction, film, and art to explore the historical experience of diverse Arab American communities. Diverse Cultures - Purple

425: Topics in Children’s Literature.  Topics have included genres such as fantasy or historical fiction and thematic topics such as survival or journeys.

426: Selected Periods.  Selected periods of literary study. May be repeated with different content.

432: Selected Studies in the Novel.  Content changes. May be repeated.

433W: Selected Studies in World Literature.  Topics on themes, issues, and developments in genres of the literatures of the world. Diverse Cultures - Purple
Pre or Coreq: ENG 275

435: The World Novel.  A study of selected novels from a variety of time periods and cultures, including Eastern and Western Europe, Asia, Africa, and Latin America.  Diverse cultures - Purple

436W: Native American Literature.  This course surveys the earliest Native American literary works, from oral tradition and songs to contemporary works and authors, with a particular emphasis on tribal and cultural contexts that identify these works as Native American.  Diverse Cultures - Purple

437W: Latina/o Literature.  Surveys the origins and development of Chicana/o and Latina/o literature from oral narratives, early poetry, and narrative fiction and memoirs, through the Chicano Movement and the emergence of Chicana/o literature and drama.  Diverse Cultures - Purple

438W: African American Literature.  This course surveys the earliest African American literary works, including slave narratives, poetry, folklore, and oration, through 20th century movements such as the Jazz-Age, Harlem Renaissance, and Black Arts Movement of the 1960s, to contemporary works and authors.  Diverse Cultures - Purple

441: Literary Theory and Criticism. Theories of literature and its production and use. 
Pre: 6 semester credits in literature

461: World Literature for Children and Young Adults.  Selected works of literature for students in grades 5-12 from a variety of countries and cultures.

463: Adolescent Literature.  Motivation and interests of and materials for adolescent readers. 

492: Selected Topics.  Various topic-oriented courses in literature. May be repeated.

495: Special Studies. Specialized, in-depth study of topics such as Holocaust literature, environmental literature, or regional literature.

498: Internship. On-site field experience, the nature of which is determined by the specific needs of the student’s program option.

499: Individual Study. Extensive reading and writing in an area for which the student has had basic preparation.