Office: 128A Hillyer Hall
Office Hours: M-R, 12:30-1:30
Web site: http://uhaweb.hartford.edu/major
Text: Required Text: The Norton Anthology of American Literature, Sixth Edition, Vol. 2.
Course Overview and Objectives
Welcome to American Literature II: 1865 to Present. While it is not possible to make an exhaustive survey of such a large body of work in one semester, this course will introduce you to the major literary movements, genres, periods, and the prevailing social and historical circumstances that have informed American prose, poetry, and drama over the last 130 years. We will also make brief forays into the literary criticism that has helped to shape our appreciation of the literature. You should be aware that we may at times cover issues suggested by the text, such as race, gender, class, and sexuality that may make you feel uncomfortable during our discussions. All viewpoints are welcome; I do, however, caution you to be sensitive to your peers in all of your comments.
The objectives for this course are several, and their successful completion depends on the degree of your investment. Ideally, this course will enable you:
· to appreciate the beauty and diversity of American literature;
· to understand key critical and technical terms of literary study and to use those terms in discussions, papers, and exams;
· to understand the connections between the everyday circumstances of American life and the literary works;
· to evaluate literature by thinking, speaking, and writing critically;
· to compare and contrast genres, periods, and themes so that you may come to an understanding of the larger tableaux of American literature;
· to express your opinions in a comfortable environment where all viewpoints are treated equally.
Grading and Evaluation
· two papers (4-6 pages) 20% each
· mid-term exam 20%
· final exam 20%
· attendance, participation,
short writing assign. 15%
· quizzes 5%
Regular attendance and participation is important to your success in this class. Your input will determine not only your participation grade, but it will also have an impact on the success of the class as a whole. You are expected to participate actively in all class activities, whether you are reading, working in groups, brainstorming, drafting, or critiquing a fellow student’s draft. Class time will often involve discussions; this means that you need to have all of your reading assignments done before class and you should be prepared to discuss the materials. I suggest that you draw up a list of topics or questions that you would like to discuss for each reading assignment.
You may rewrite one of your papers. Please check with me first to see whether a rewrite would be beneficial. A rewrite is a “re-seeing” of the paper; it is not simply a retyped version of the paper. If you decide to rewrite your paper, do not limit yourself to the issues I noted on the graded version. I will not regrade a paper in which you have changed only spelling and grammatical errors. You must turn in the previously graded paper with the revision. These rewrites are due within two weeks of your receiving the original paper grade, and I will count the higher grade. I suggest that you use your rewrite for a paper that receives a grade of C- or below. I will not accept rewrites if the original paper is not turned in on time, nor will I accept late rewrites.
All papers, including rough drafts, are due at the beginning of the class period on the due date. I accept late papers, but they will be penalized five points for each calendar day they are overdue. For example, a B paper (85 points) due on Monday and turned in on Tuesday will automatically become a B-/C+ paper (80 points). This policy includes papers that are not turned in at the beginning of class. Do not wait until the last minute to write or print your final draft. I will not accept computer, disk, or printer problems as excuses for late work. If you cannot make it to class the day a paper is due, then you should have a friend or classmate bring that paper in.
I take attendance at every meeting. You may have no more than three (3) absences for a MW class. Please use your absences when you are ill or when you have a family emergency; no distinction is made between excused and unexcused absences. Please keep track of your absences. Students who make a habit of missing the class (more than four) will be dropped from the course. Absence from a previous class is no excuse for failure to complete assignments on time—this includes reading assignments.
You must bring your books to class everyday unless I tell you otherwise. Failure to do so will lower your class participation grade.
You may have several announced and unannounced quizzes throughout the semester. These quizzes will cover lectures and readings. If you are absent on the day of a quiz, you will not be allowed to take the quiz.
No make-up exams will be given unless you have a verifiable doctor’s excuse and you have not missed more than three classes.
Plagiarism is the theft of someone else’s work or ideas. Credit to the source must be given in an appropriate format. If you plagiarize, you will receive a “0” on the paper and you may fail the course. More than one instance of plagiarism may result in dismissal from the University.
I encourage you to stop by my office during office hours to discuss your work at anytime throughout the semester. If my office hours are inconvenient, please make an appointment to talk with me at another time. Individual work in conferences is often one of the most helpful ways to improve your understanding of the material and your writing.
Excessive tardiness is disruptive behavior. If you arrive after I have taken roll, you should remind me after class so you are not counted absent. Moreover, if you are tardy for four or more classes, I will count you absent for each of those classes. No extra time will be allotted when you are late for a quiz.