There? Their? Or They’re? Telebears XIV–English

Posted by: Avinash on Thursday, April 26th, 2007

English must be fun. Go to lecture, listen to absorbing thoughts about the most amazing texts ever written, write essays about those texts, and then have the professor/GSI knock you down because your interpretation doesn’t coincide with theirs. Must always be fun being an English major.

Here’s what the students say about their fickle profs. (Note: English reviews are long. So Telebears scheduling will take Friday off and return Monday.)

(Have any memories about professors in this department for a class or in general? Leave them in the comments.)

English 45A, Literature in English
Steven Justice, MW 10-11, 277 Cory
Paradise Lost (Penguin Classics)Edmund Spenser's Poetry (Norton Critical Editions)The Canterbury Tales: (original-spelling edition) (Penguin Classics)John Donne's Poetry (Norton Critical Edition)
“I really didn’t think that I was going to be mesmerized by Medieval literature, but after taking this class, I found the subject absolutely intriguing!…His enthusiastic level is sky high, esp. according to him, because of his caffeine necessity…Like watching Conan O Brien teach medieval lit….It doesn’t hurt that he looks like the guy from law and order….yum!”

James Turner, MW 12-1, 3 LeConte
The Norton Anthology of English Literature, Volume 1: The Middle Ages through the Restoration and the Eighteenth Century (Norton Anthology of English Literature)The Norton Anthology of English Literature, Volume 2: The Romantic Period through the Twentieth Century (Norton Anthology of English Literature)Hamlet (Folger Shakespeare Library)
“There is no doubt that Professor Turner is a brilliant scholar. However, his lectures can be unclear and he tends to be very harsh on students…All bad reviewers are on crack…To begin, this professor reminds me of the Sheriff of Nottingham in Costner’s Robin Hood…The man should never be allowed to stand in front of a group of students.”

English 45B, Literature in English
Richard Hutson, MW 1-2 141 McCone
The Five-Book PreludeThe Castle of Otranto: A Gothic Story (Oxford World's Classics)Pride and Prejudice (Bantam Classics)Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass: An American Slave, Written by Himself (The Bedford Series in History and Culture)Autobiography and Other Writings (Oxford World's Classics)Legend of Sleepy Hollow and other Stories from the Sketch BookEssay on Man and Other Poems (Dover Thrift Editions)The Sovereignty and Goodness of God: with Related Documents (The Bedford Series in History and Culture)Gulliver's Travels
“I really want to like him, but I feel like I’m not learning. His lectures actually seem to have structure and he seems confident in delivering them, yet if you pay really careful attention you will realize that he never actually teaches anything!…I go to lecture to see his beautiful suits, rather than for his lectures.”

Steven Goldsmith, MW 2-3 277 Cory
Benito Cereno (Bedford College Editions)Pride and Prejudice (Bantam Classics)Wieland and Memoirs of Carwin the Biloquist (Penguin Classics)Autobiography and Other Writings (Oxford World's Classics)The Norton Anthology of English Literature, Volume C: The Restoration and the Eighteenth CenturyThe Norton Anthology of English Literature, Volume D: The Romantic PeriodFrankenstein (Enriched Classics)
“His examples and lectures are so clear and brilliant, you can’t help but be smarter at the end of them…always had unique insight even on books that seemed dull at first glance. excited about the material. everyone loved him…you can’t help but to watch him walking back and forth, up and down the stairs, rubbing his hands and so forth…. HOTT!”

English 45C, Literature in English (again?)
Eric Falci, MW 11-12, 2 LeConte
Beckett: Waiting for Godot (Landmarks of World Literature (New))The Sound and the Fury: The Corrected Text with Faulkner's Appendix (Modern Library)Their Eyes Were Watching GodA Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man (Penguin Classics)The Norton Anthology of Modern and Contemporary Poetry, Third Edition, Volume 1: Modern PoetryWide Sargasso Sea: A Novel (Norton Paperback Fiction)To the LighthouseTheir Eyes Were Watching God CD
“Very interesting and very enthusiastic about what he teaches. i enjoyed reading almost all of the texts. the paper topics were pretty broad and give you a lot of space to write about what you’re most interested in. he is very friendly/approachable & takes what his students say into consideration when lecturing.”

Lyn Hejinian, MW 3-4, 3 LeConte
The Grand Piano, The Turn of the Screw (Dover Thrift Editions)The New Negro : Voices of the Harlem RenaissanceSleeping with the Dictionary (New California Poetry, 4)Petals of BloodCaneImaginations (A New Directions Paperbook)Three Lives and Q.E.D. (Norton Critical Edition)Mrs. Dalloway (Annotated)
“BEWARE: If you’re looking for a professor who tears apart texts in lecture, do not take this course…She has led an interesting life. The fact that she has a whole section of her works in the Norton is just icing on the cake…she investigates her themes with real focus and is the first to downplay her own importance in the canon.”

English 117A, Shakespeare
David Landreth, TuTh 1230-2, 390 Hearst Mining
The Riverside ShakespeareThe Jew of Malta (Revels Student Editions)
“He makes Shakespeare accessible and exciting through his interpretations and occasional acting. I love it when he seamlessly tosses in pop culture references and jokes…Enthusiastic professor with cheezy jokes. Somewhat dry commentary…Watch in awe as he quotes the Bard and Morrissey in the same lecture.”

English 117S, Shakespeare
Alan Nelson, TuTh 930-11, 159 Mulford

“He has a good sense of humor for an old guy and is very explanatory but gets ticked off at people’s idiosyncracies…very interesting and extremely approachable and friendly to his students…his lectures were insulting in that he merely summarized the texts we were reading and never offered any in-depth analysis.”

English 118, Milton
Kevis Goodman, MW 3-4, 150 Kroeber
John Milton, Complete Poems and Major Prose
“Can’t say I love the class, however. Readings were pretty heavy after the midterm, and I didn’t like that the class was both big and sectionless…i loved milton, and was afraid until I took her class! she amazed me with her wit, and great knowledge…Lectures are excellent, and her enthusiasm for the material is nothing short of inspirational…earns every bit of her Distinguished Teaching Award.”

English 125E, The Contemporary Novel
John Bishop, TuTh 2-330, 106 Stanley
Ceremony (Contemporary American Fiction Series)Pale FireThe Bloody ChamberLibra (Contemporary American Fiction)WattThe Road (Oprah's Book Club)Against the Day
“Bishop has a bit of public speaking anxiety, but he manages to keep the class interested and entertained… He makes jokes out of the blue that, if you are spacing out, will snap you back into focus. Also, the novels he chose to teach were so strange that I wanted to go to class to see what he had to say about them…Intelligible, rambling lecture style. Little workload/reading. Very approachable.”

English 130D, American Literature: 1900-1945
Katherine Snyder, MWF 12-1, 4 LeConte

CaneMiss Lonelyhearts & the Day of the LocustQuicksand and Passing (American Women Writers Series)Gentlemen Prefer Blondes -and- But Gentlemen Marry Brunettes: The Illuminating Diary of a Professional LadyThe House of Mirth (Signet Classics)Three Negro ClassicsLet Us Now Praise Famous Men: The American Classic, in Words and Photographs, of Three Tenant Families in the Deep SouthThe Great GatsbyNative Son (Perennial Classics)The Sun Also Rises
“Lectures are unstructured, unclear, and disconnected, and she always runs over the alloted time…lectures are uninspired, and she often comes off as a caricature of a profesor you’d see in a movie…Helpful? In a theoretical sense…little unorganized about her lectures but if you go to her office hours, she will clarify and she will make time to see you.”

(Data taken from RateMyProfessors and Berkeley Online Schedule of Classes)
(Image from Angry Flower)

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