Themes in Literature: Literature and Infrastructure

English 1160
Literature and Infrastructure
Section 03
Steven Watts

So much of our daily lives, from large scale debates about climate change and media coverage to more localized concerns like which grocery store offers the best produce, is determined by structures designed to be hidden or overlooked. This class will explore how such infrastructure is represented in literature and examine how literary strategies and techniques can help us pay attention to overlooked aspects of everyday life, recognize how our daily lives are organized through those structures, and communicate our experiences with each other. We will read poetry by Walt Whitman and Tommy Pico, fiction by Virginia Woolf and Mohsin Hamid, and nonfiction by Hanif Abdurraqib and Zadie Smith, along with other texts.