My Expectations of You:

I expect you to arrive on time to class, ready to discuss the assigned text (as needed, I will help you wake up since we are meeting at 8:30); if we are discussing a text, I expect you to have a copy of it with you in class and be willing to partiicapte in class discussion. I also expect you to turn in all work in time and to create your own paper topics in consultation with me. I expect you to be willing to read and reread sometimes extremely difficult, sometimes philosophical texts and to work productively with your own resistance to the challenges of doing so. Similalry, I expect you to be willing to read "everything" closely, including book covers, copyright pages, facsimiles, graphic design, and website pages.


Please turn off your cell phones and computers before class. Take notes with paper and pen or pencil. If you are late to class, or if you leave during class, or if you leave class early, I will count you as absent. You are allowed two absences without excuse or penalty.

So that we can quickly google information as needed during class, I will ask a different student at each class meeting to sit next to the class computer and serve as our technical assistant.

Required Books (11 in total):
They are all (supposed to be) in the UF Textbook store, but feel free to order them online. Please just order these editions, linked here, so that we will all be on the same page when we discuss the required books in class.

Thomas Bernhard, Correction

Jacques Derrida, Archive Fever: A Freudian Impression

Daniel Defoe, Robinson Crusoe

Henry James, The Aspern Papers

Wilhelm Jensen, Gradiva

Soren Kierkegaard, Either / Or Part 1 Kierkegaard's Writings (Princeton UP)

Jerome McGann, A Critique of Modern Textual Criticism, Foreword by David C Greetham

Dimitri Nabokov, The Original of Laura

Vladimir Nabokov, Pale Fire

Georges Perec, 53 Days

Wilkie Collins, The Moonstone

Required Readings: I have also put a number of required readings on UF's electronic course reserve or linked them on the schedule webpage of this course. Print out copies of all assigned online readings and bring them to class.

Required Writing: One short paper (1,00 words) due, research assignment due October 11 and October 15 (see below), a research paper (6k words) due December 8 in class, co-leading class twice, and responses (see below) to each reading due by 6 p.m. the day before each class.

Assignment for research paper: Keep a notebook on the editing of a posthumously published work of literature or philosophy we have or will read for this course. (You may choose a work not on the syllabus, but consult with me first.)

1. Keep a note book (word doc) of your research (go to databases on UF libraries. Consult JSTOR, Project Muse, EBSCO, back issues of The Times Literary Supplement [TLS]), etc. and give your research paper a tentative title. Date your entries. Your entries should be analytical notes, questions, written out as complete sentences, and records of what you searched (give search engine you used and the words and phrases you seached).

2. Write an annotated bibliography of at least four articles and / or book chapters related to your research project. Email 1 and 2 to me October 11.

3. Give a coherent narrative account (intellectual autobiography) of your research: explain why you did what did you do, however random it may seem. Consider, as relevant, the editor's paratexts, the author's notebooks, files, any archives, in print or digital. The author's biography / autobiography, letters, and so on. What did you "read"? Everything?

4. Summary of tentative results. Analyze how you "read" the entries in your notes: what editorial assumptions about authorship, interference, intention, texts, literature as a container, the book as finished or unfinished, archives, letters, supplementary anecdotes that frame a (biographical or autobiographical) reading of the literary text and so on are operative in the posthumously published work you have analyzed? Consider literature and philosophy as the questioning, even undoing of the assumptions about readability on which editing depends. What more to want to learn? Email 3 and 4 to me October 15.

Assignment for each class:

Part A. Two discussion questions on each assigned film and on each assigned reading are due by 6 p.m. on Mondays and Wednesdays. Email your questions in one word document to me with your name at the bottom of the document at


Many of the readings will be difficult, partly because the vocabularies the writers use contain technical terms you probably won't know as well as "big words" you may not know. Since you can easily go to wiktionary to look up the meanings and etymologies of words you don't know, I ask that you include at least one word you had to look up with your discussion questions. That will help everyone in the class. And since this is an English class, you should want to expand your vocabulary. :)


Recommended Readings


Rainer Maria Rilke, The Notebooks of Malte Laurids Brigge