Tufts University: Joseph Litvak - English - Professor ratings, reviews and much more | JumboAccess
Professor Litvak is great. He conveys clearly his thorough understanding of the evolution, breadth, and substance of Black Comedy. He demands class discussion and is tolerant of alternative views and interpretations provided that they're justified; he won't accept bullshit, especially in papers. He can be slightly cocky, but so is Black Comedy, which inspires his teaching style. He's still approachable and helpful outside of class. The Fall-05 T.A. was Ashley Sheldon, who is brilliant and a more than apt grader. Get to know her if she's your T.A.
Class is a 75-minute block twice per week. For the first class you'll read half a novel or a play and for the second you'll view a movie or television show, plus the occasional critical/newspaper article (article packet from English department was about 80pp). Pop quizzes (5) to test whether you've done the reading can be hard to pass even if you have because questions are very specific. Two five-page papers that value style as much as content (these need to be really good) as well as the standard English course final exam.
The texts you study are awesome. The Fall-05 lineup consisted of Vladimir Nabokov/Edward Albee/Evelyn Waugh/Muriel Spark/"To Die For"/"Welcome to the Dollhouse"/"Fargo"/"Chris Rock: Bigger and Blacker"/"To Be Or Not To Be"/"The Sopranos"/"Kiki and Herb: Will Die For You"/etc. Huge variety, some challenging, all excellent.
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