|Quizzes, Essays, other work||40%|
A list of topics covered in the course is provided in the calendar.
Lectures: 2 sessions / week, 1.25 hours / session
Because we'll do much of the work of this subject through discussions, I'll expect you to be actively here during class and to practice the skills of a good participant: informed attention, helpful contribution, generous and intelligent listening.
Some time during the term, memorize and recite any poem [or section of a poem or of prose] by a writer read this term. The choice piece poem [at least 14 lines long] and of occasion is up to you; the piece need not necessarily be one in the texts we'll read, nor need the occasion be during class-time.
An option for replacing a memorization: evidence of having attended two poetry readings [probably not slams or contests] in the Boston area.
One more option for replacing a memorization: go to the David Hockney exhibit at the Museum of Fine Arts and write a thoughtful response.
To keep us focused, on most days we discuss literary texts, we'll have a short quiz.
Four 4-page "response" papers, distributed throughout the term. I'm interested in the connections you'd make in these "thinking-it-through" exercises: between the external portrait of the Wife of Bath and the story she tells.... or between satire and humor in Swift and Hogarth... or between what "wit" means to John Donne and to Oscar Wilde.... These papers are occasions for you to ask questions and to make connections; such connections make the "thick description" by which we understand things systemically. I don't expect a fully-delineated, proven argument in a 3 page exercise; I do look for careful reading, insightful thinking, good statement of questions or problems or insight or response. Due at flexible intervals, because you know your own rhythms and the rhythm of your other responsibilities; plan so that you do good work. If you want me to act stern and arbitrary in order to motivate you, I will oblige if you consult in advance.
This exercise will work through three parts: at the start of the week of Lec #23 we'll generate questions [you write potential final-exam questions], and at the end of that week we [well, you] will answer them- first in a last-week collective study-session, and then in a written final exam. [At least a third of the questions on the final will derive from questions the students set in their last-week exercises.]
In accordance with the seriousness of what we're about, the ratio--allowing for flexibility in the interests of justice--will be the following:
|Quizzes, Essays, other work||40%|
Plagiarism -- the use of another's intellectual work without acknowledgement -- is a serious offense. It is the policy of the Literature Faculty that students who plagiarize will receive an F in the subject and that the instructor will forward the case to the Committee on Discipline. Full acknowledgement for all information obtained from sources outside the classroom must be clearly stated in all written work submitted. All ideas, arguments, and direct phrasing taken from someone else's work must be identified and properly footnoted. Quotations from other sources must be clearly marked as distinct from the student's own work. For further guidance on the proper forms of attribution, consult the style guides available in the Writing and Communication Center and the MIT Web site on Plagiarism.
|1||Introductions, explanations, mutual question and answer
|2||Medieval Literature: Middle English, secular and profane|
|3||More irony of character and more social comedy of manners: This time infused with gender|
|4||The Bayeaux Tapestry|
|5||Conclude Chaucer: Textual authority and the "experience" of the Wife of Bath|
|6||Humanism, Wit, and the English Renaissance|
|7||Shakespeare, Romeo and Juliet
1 day after Lec #7: American Repertory Theatre production of Romeo and Juliet
|8||The Augustan Age: Neoclassicism, Satire, Scatology|
|9||Johnathan Swift, Gulliver's Travels|
|10||Sense, Sensibility, Landscape|
|11||Romanticism, Revolution, Aesthetics|
|12||Jane Austen, Pride and Prejudice|
|13||Jane Austen, Pride and Prejudice and Poems by John Clare and Christopher Smart|
|14||Lewis Carroll, Alice in Wonderland|
|15||Lewis Carroll, Alice in Wonderland (cont.)|
|16||The Age of Reform, Restraint, Parody|
|17||Arthur Conan Doyle: Sherlock Holmes stories|
|18||Film: Oscar Wilde, The Importance of Being Earnest|
|19||Henry James, Daisy Miller|
|20||Henry James, Daisy Miller (cont.)|
|21||Post-Empire and the Fragmentation of History|
|22||Samuel Beckett, Waiting for Godot|
|23||Harold Pinter, The Homecoming|
|25||Final Exercise Questions|
|26||Assignment: Responses due|
|27||Final Evaluations, Poems, Monty Python|