2019 - 2020

  Reimagining History in Contemporary American Literature  
Sonia WeinerGilman-humanities277 Tue1200-1400 Sem  2
University credit hours:  2.0

Course description


Reimagining History in Contemporary American Literature

Dr. Sonia Weiner


A genre of speculative fiction, alternate history reimagines history by reshaping it, posing different historical scenarios, developments and narratives, yet remaining close enough to ‘consensus history’ (‘facts’) for the reader to understand its ‘distortion.’ Such texts, which permit insights into the existing reality, are largely critical of it. This course will focus on the way contemporary America reimagines its history, especially in relation to the contemporary era of post-truth, misinformation and hoaxes. We will additionally consider the role of photography embedded within historical fantasy, and explore the shifting understandings of photographic meaning.


Tentative Authors: Colson Whitehead, Ben Winters, Michael Chabon, Amitava Kumar.


In-class Midterm = 40%

Final Paper = 60%


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