Feb 25, 2024  
2022-2023 Undergraduate Catalog 
2022-2023 Undergraduate Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

HON 363 - The Castaway Narrative in World Literature

Prerequisite, acceptance to the University Honors Program, or consent of instructor. While stories of drift and survival at sea are certainly as old as humanity’s first attempts to float, the literary and cultural form of castaway narrative has its own history that is tied directly to the world-historical conditions of trans-oceanic travel and the accompanying geo-political relations between colony and colonizer. It is therefore possible to also see the castaway narrative, not as simply the result of any national cultural development, but instead a literary form that emerges simultaneously in various sites of cultural production. From a historical perspective, we might argue that the castaway narrative emerges throughout the globe at the very moment that circumnavigation is made possible and thus can be read an important transnational literary form in which competing ideas and visions of the newly imagined world are proposed and contested. As such, these stories of survival at sea, tend to also be fascinating ideological texts that allow us to see the interplay between concrete world historical conditions and more abstract categories of language, geography, ethnography, race, gender, and national identity. (Offered as needed.) 3 credits