Second language pedagogy — how we teach world languages — aims to drive language development within a classroom so that a learner has the competency to navigate everyday and professional interactions. Situating second language teaching within a usage-based model of language acquisition, the coursework focuses on lesson design and classroom practices that foster development of interdependent language skills (speaking, reading, writing, listening and intercultural competence). We also address contemporary social justice issues in language learning.
Students develop tools to design lessons, integrate high-leverage practices in the language classroom and evaluate how a language curriculum aligns with both national standards and models of natural human communication. This praxis-oriented course gives students many opportunities to practice strategies of language teaching in small group and mock-teaching exercises.
This course is open to all students and recommended for those who may wish to teach a second language, including teaching English abroad. It is required for students who intend to work a teaching assistant in MLL and may be taken any time before, or concurrent with, a student’s first semester of work as a TA.
This course is designed for first-year students with two aims in mind: an exploration of literary texts from around the world and an introduction to the discipline of World Literature. This course is at the forefront of literary study, as it brings global perspectives to Kenyon. It emphasizes the study of literature as a way of crossing linguistic, national and cultural borders. The course draws attention to language by placing novels, poems, plays and short stories written in different languages and translated into English in conversation with one another. It questions the boundedness of the nation by showing how the writing, publishing and reading of literary texts is already a transnational activity. Finally, it reveals how local and global cultures are intertwined in the literary text. Course readings may include Ahmed Saadawi’s "Frankenstein in Baghdad," Eileen Chang’s "Love in a Fallen City," Luigi Pirandello’s "One, No One, and One Hundred Thousand," Thomas Mann’s "Death in Venice," Haruki Marukami’s “The Elephant Vanishes,” Virginia Woolf’s "The Waves" and Gabriela Mistral’s "Poem of Chile." The theme and texts taught in the course vary each year, and students are encouraged to contact the course instructor to find out the specific reading list for a given year. This counts toward major requirements in MLL (Tracks I, II, III) or toward any minor offered in MLL. This course paired with any other course taught in the MLL department counts toward the humanities diversification requirement. Only open to first-year students. No prerequisite. Offered every fall.
This course analyzes artistically significant films from different cultures that address a given theme, such as the tension between obedience and autonomy or love and loss, and course material varies according to topic. Students explore how the films’ cinematic qualities convey thematic content. The discussion format asks students to reflect on their own values, behavior and ability to make thoughtful life choices. Readings on the theme complement consideration of the historical and geographical settings of the films. The course emphasizes the development of interpretation through varied writing assignments to conclude with a short research paper. Coursework includes collaborative preparation for class discussion, weekly posts, journal entries, an essay, a mid-term and a final exam. Attendance at screenings outside of class is required. Films are subtitled. This course can count toward the film major, international studies and the fine arts diversification requirement (when paired with another film course). No prerequisite. Offered every year.
This course focuses on both the theoretical and practical aspects of literary translation. By reading numerous essays on translation that encompass a wide range of eras and literary traditions, from canonical texts to current debates, it provides the opportunity to think critically about and discuss this vital and yet often understudied cultural practice. These theoretical approaches are used as a framework to compare published translations, to review books of translation, and to inform student practice of the art. In addition to weekly writing assignments and workshops, students complete an extensive literary translation and participate in a reading of their work. This course can be used to satisfy major requirements in MLL. Prerequisite: proficiency in at least one other language besides English and permission of instructor. Generally offered every two years.
With this course students gain an overview of the discipline of modern languages and literatures. Discussion focuses on readings by scholars that survey developments in various sub-fields of the discipline, such as language learning, cultural studies, feminisms, race and ethnicity and translation studies. In addition, the course supports the majors’ successful completion of their senior research project. Students articulate their individual research process, complete a literature review, write summaries and practice writing a prospectus with an annotated bibliography. Supplementary individual research and writing guidance is available throughout the semester. Several writing workshops develop collaborative engagement and focus on the writing process. The course is a seminar, taught by the faculty coordinator with presentations by other MLL faculty as well. The course counts toward the major and is offered on a credit/no credit basis.
This course offers an opportunity to study on an individual basis an area of special interest — literary, cultural or linguistic — under the regular supervision of a faculty member. It is offered primarily to candidates for honors, to majors and, under special circumstances, to potential majors and minors. Individual study is intended to supplement, not to take the place of, regular courses in the curriculum of each language program. Staff limitations restrict this offering to a very few students. To enroll in an individual study, a student must identify a member of the MLL department willing to direct the project and, in consultation with him or her, write a one-page proposal for the IS, which must be approved by the department chair before it can go forward. The proposal should specify the schedule of reading and/or writing assignments and the schedule of meeting periods. The amount of work in an IS should approximate that required on average in regular courses of corresponding levels. Typically, an IS earns the student 0.25 or 0.5 units of credit. At a minimum, the department expects the student to meet with the instructor one hour per week. Because students must enroll for individual studies by the end of the seventh class day of each semester, they should begin discussion of the proposed individual study by the semester before, so that there is time to devise the proposal and seek departmental approval.
This course offers independent study for senior candidates for honors under the direction of the honors supervisor. Normally offered in the spring semester, this course may be offered in the fall with the approval of the student's honors supervisor and the chair of modern languages and literature. Permission of instructor and department chair required.