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Cedar Crest ENG 352 - ENG 352 SYLLABUS

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Cedar Crest College Dr. Carolyn Segal 111 Hartzel Hall 610. 606.4666 x3394 [email protected] Office Hours: Tues., 11:00 a.m.-noon, Thurs., 2:30-3:30 p.m., and by appointment ENGLISH SEMINAR: Writing Women’s Lives ENG 352 (3 credits) Spring 2009 In this book, I want to examine how women‟s lives have been contrived, and how they may be written. Carolyn G. Heilbrun Writing a Woman’s Life A story like a vice, future reader, innocent reader. . . . You who feign suspense or harbor closet wishes for redemption, salvation--or at the very least a little flourish of transcendence . . . All right then, take my hand. There, there now. Let the rhetorical celebration begin! Carole Maso Defiance Texts: See novels listed on syllabus below An up-to-date handbook Course Description: This is the English capstone course, in which, even if we do not find all the answers, we may at least begin to frame the proper questions. To help us, we‟ll be reading six novels written by women in the 20th and 21st centuries. Topics for discussion that should emerge: women‟s themes and gender issues, historical and cultural contexts, the metaphor of storytelling/writing, other postmodern strategies and theme. I expect that you will bring the weight of previous reading/courses to bear on our discussions. Course Objectives (These are in accordance with the objectives of the Humanities Dept.): --Students will have an overview of the development of modern and contemporary literature. --Students will have knowledge of significant works of modern and contemporary literature and their historical and cultural contexts. --Students will be able to analyze a work of literature. --Students will be able to write effective literary essays. --Students will have gained an appreciation of literature, an appreciation of the connections among literary works, and an appreciation of the value of reading.--Students will have a final (capstone) opportunity to synthesize their literary studies and their understanding of the role of literature. Course Outcomes: --Students will demonstrate their understanding of significant literary works. --Students will demonstrate how individual works fit into larger literary, historical, and cultural contexts. --Students will demonstrate reading and analytical/critical thinking skills with oral practice in the seminar portion of the class and with writing. --Students will demonstrate mastery of writing skills. --Students will demonstrate knowledge of literary terms. --Students will demonstrate the synthesis of their studies in English. Course Requirements: Your presence and your participation will determine the success of this capstone course. 1) Attendance is required. You are allowed two (2) absences (these include medical, sports, and theatrical rehearsal excuses, so plan your cuts carefully). More than two absences will affect your final grade; five absences will result in a grade of F. Excessive lateness and early departures will count as absences. 2) All reading and writing assignments must be completed by the dates specified. 3) All class members are expected to participate in weekly roundtable discussions. 4) Each class member will be responsible for leading a discussion of a particular work or significant portions of a particular work. 5) Three essays: a literary autobiography and two analytical papers: Your literary autobiography (3 pages minimum). How did you end up as an English major (or co-major or minor) at Cedar Crest? What led you to this capstone course? What do you read? Why do you read? What do you want from your reading? Do you have a theory or philosophy in regard to reading? What is your earliest memory of reading? of books? Do you see reading (and writing) as central to your life--once upon a time? now? later? These questions do not constitute an outline; they are simply intended as starting points for your reflections. Due at beginning of second class, January 26. This paper will give me an early sample of your writing--and will provide you with an example of my commentary. Note: Use MLA format for all papers. Mid-semester paper, on a topic derived from your reading and discussions. To get started on finding a topic: respond to the premise of a text or to a point in a class discussion. Explicate a passage, showing its relation to the rest of the text. Ask questions of texts and attempt to answer those questions. (Better yet--what question[s] does a particular text ask of you?) Due March 2. Minimum length: 5 pages, not including “Works Cited” page. Final critical paper (8 pages minimum, not including “Works Cited” page): Compare and contrast any two protagonists of the six novels covered in thecourse. What are the similarities and differences in the characters‟ experiences and approaches as they attempt to create (to remember and to create) meaningful lives--and how do these characters “speak” to us? Due April 20. The semester will proceed more smoothly for all, if you --Never wait until just before class to print out your work. --Have all written work prepared on time (late work will automatically lose credit—in the amount of one full grade). --Attend class on a regular basis. --Bring your texts and participate in discussions in a meaningful manner. Assessment/Grading: Relationship of assignments and requirements to outcomes: --Students will demonstrate their knowledge of course content by their completion of two critical papers and by their meaningful participation in seminar discussions. --Students will demonstrate the ability to engage in critical analysis through class discussions and written assignments. --Students will demonstrate the ability to write clearly and effectively in three essays. Final Grade: Average of grades for literary autobiography, mid-semester paper, final paper, and class grade (includes attendance, leading a seminar discussion, meaningful participation in roundtable discussions). Additional Student Responsibilities: --Make-up Policies: If you miss a class, you are still responsible for the material covered. A late paper will have the grade reduced by one letter grade. --The Cedar Crest Honor Code and the


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