EN 232: American Literature II
MWF 1-3:30, CAS 107

 


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Instructor: Dr. Amie A. Doughty
Office: 301 KJS Library
Office Hours: MWF 9:00-9:30 and by appointment
Phone: 635-2378
E-mail: adoughty@lssu.edu
Web Address: http://www.lssu.edu/faculty/adoughty

Required Text:
Lauter, Paul, ed. The Heath Anthology of American Literature, Volume 2. 4th ed. New York: Houghton, 2002.

Course Description and Goals:
Catalog Description: A chronological study of American literature from the Civil War through the present, covering the Age of Realism and the development of twentieth century literature. Prerequisite: EN110. Pre- or co-requisite: EN111.

The Reality: We're going to spend the next six weeks trying to cover almost 150 years of American Literature. You’ll be reading well-known authors as well as some lesser known ones, and you’ll be learning about them in terms of history (literary as well as world) and artistry. By the end of the session, you should have a solid understanding of how these authors and their texts fit into their historical era and what makes them lasting documents.

Course Policies:

Attendance: This is a small class and absences will be more noticeable than in many classes. You are expected to attend class and to be prepared to discuss the literature you're reading. If you are unable to come to class, it is your responsibility to make up the work you missed and to get notes from a classmate. Because this class meets for six weeks only, missing even a single session will mean you miss a significant chunk of material.

Class Discussions: I firmly believe that the best learning comes from student-generated class discussions. Therefore, I expect you to come to class having read the materials and prepared to discuss them. If I call on you, I expect you to have something to say about the readings we're doing, even if it's a question about what was going on or your objections to what we've been saying about the text. It is OK to disagree with me and with your classmates, as long as you express your disagreement in a courteous manner. Because this class is small, it is important that everyone has something to say, so leave your discussion inhibitions at the door.

Assignments: Each assignment is worth 25% of your final grade.

·         Journal (and Quizzes if necessary): Each week you will be required to submit a journal discussing one of the readings from the past week. The journals need to focus on analyzing the text you choose. DO NOT give a plot summary of the text. Rather, talk about its literary merit—character, narrative, historical importance, theme, etc. Be specific in your analysis, and bring in specific examples from the text to support your points. Each journal should be 2-3 pages long. In addition to the journals, you may be responsible for taking reading quizzes if I discover that you are not doing the readings. Quizzes may not be announced, so you should always be prepared to take one.

·         Paper: You will write a 3-5-page paper for this assignment. Choose one text that you did not read (preferably by an author we did not cover) in the Late Nineteenth Century: 1865-1910 section (1-886) and write an analysis of it based on some of the historical aspects of the period that we have discussed in class. You can focus on how it reflects and/or challenges the events that were happening during this period. Alternately, you may examine it in terms of some of the literary trends of the time (realism/naturalism/regionalism). This paper is due on Monday, 14 July.

·         Presentation: During the first week of class, you will pair up with another student in the class and together choose one of the authors that we’ll be reading in class (see syllabus). On the day that we are scheduled to read that author, you and your partner will present a brief overview (no more than 10 minutes) of the author’s work in its historical context and then lead a discussion of the assigned reading. You may, if you like, choose different/additional readings by that author for the class to read, but if you want to do this, you must let me know at least 1 week in advance so that I can announce the change to the class. The presentation/discussion should last a minimum of 30 minutes (only 10 of which may be biographical and historical presentation).

·         Final Exam (Take-home): Due Monday 4 August. I will distribute the exam the week before it is due.



Assignment Formatting: All assignments need to be prepared in MLA formatting. That means no cover page for papers. Include a Works Cited Page for each text that you discuss in you papers. Any good handbook will have MLA format in it. I will be happy to help you if you have any questions about the formatting.

Late Work: I will accept work no more than one week late. All late work will lose 10%. If you know that you won’t be able to get work in on time, see me before the due date, and we may be able to make arrangements for an extension.

Plagiarism: Plagiarism is the passing off of another's work (whether quoted, paraphrased or summarized) as your own without proper documentation and can result in serious repercussions, including expulsion from the university. Do your own work.