AMERICAN LITERATURE TO 1810
1. ABOUT THE COURSE
Literature of the early Americas from the sixteenth through the early nineteenth century dealing with the discovery, conquest, and settlement of the Americas, with European imperialism, colonial creole patriotism, the American independence movements, and the early American nation states. Texts by men and women in the various British, Spanish, and French colonies, such as John Smith, Mary Rowlandson, Ebenezer Cook, Benjamin Franklin, Thomas Jefferson, J. Hector St Jean de Crevecocur, Samson Occom, Phillis Wheatley, and Charles Brockden Brown, as well as Christopher Columbus, Samuel de Champlain, Alvar Nunez Cabeza de Vaca, Guaman Poma de Ayala, Carlos Siguenza y Gongora, Sor Juana Ines de la Cruz, Alonso Carrio de la Vandera, Andros Bello, and Domingo F. Sarmiento. Apart from reading narratives, poetry, and oratory by these and other authors, we will also study visual and material artifacts by means of presentations and film screenings. The primary texts are required reading and should be obtained in the editions indicated or as contained in the coursepack (CP). There will also be an apparatus of suggested secondary readings in the Rerserved Reading Section of the Library to provide (optional) background readings and to assist you in the process of writing, expanding, and revising of papers.
ENG 430 Coursepack, Olaudah Equiano, The Interesting Narrative (Penguin); Alvar Nunez Cabeza de Vaca, The Account (Arte Publico); Thomas Jefferson, The Portable Jefferson (ed. Merrel Peterson, Viking); Benjamin Franklin, Autobiography (Signet); Sor Juana Ines de la Cruz, Poems, Protest, and a Dream (Penguin); William Byrd, History of the Dividing Line (Dover); J. Hector St. Jean de Crevecoeur, Letters from an American Farmer (Penguin), Susanna Rowson, Charlotte Temple (Oxford); Charles Brockden Brown, Edgar Huntley (Penguin), Domingo Faustino Sarmiento, Life in the Argentine Republic (Hafner).
II. COURSE SCHEDULE
M 8/31 Introduction
PART A: DISCOVERY, EXPLORATION, CONQUEST, AND SETTLEMENT
Christopher Columbus, "The Journal" and "Letters" (CP).
Bemal Diaz del Castillo, from A True History of the Conquest of New Spain (Cp).
M 9/7 LABORDAY
Alvar Nunez Cabeza de Vaca, The Account.
Felipe Guaman Poma de Ayala, "Letter to A King" (CP).
John Smith, from A True Relation (CP)
Samuel de Champlain, from Voyages to New France.
DUE: 1-PAGE STATEMENT OF PURPOSE FOR PAPER # I
SLIDE PRESENTATION: ANERICA AS IMAGE AND MAP
DUE: DRAFT 1, PAPER # I DUE (3-5 PS)
Discussion: Mary Rowlandson, The Goodness and Sovereigntyof God (CP).
MOVIE: CABEZA DE VACA
DUE: PAPER # 1, FINAL DRAFT DUE (3-5 PS)
B: RELIGION, CULTURE, AND LITERATURE IN THE TRANS-ATLANTIC ATLANTIC EMPIRES.
Discussion. Michael Wigglesworth, Day of Doom (CP).
Cotton Mather, The Wonders of the Invisible World (CP).
Susanna Martin, Examination of Susanna Martin (CP).
Discussion: Jonathan Edwards, Sermons (CP).
Samson Occom, Sermon Preached at the Execution of Moses Paul (CP).
Phillis Wheatley, Selected Poems
Phillis Wheatley, Selected Poems, cont.
DUE: STATEMENT OF PURPOSE FOR PAPER # 2.
Carlos SigUenza y Gongora, The Misfortunes of Alonso Ramirez (CP)
C. EMPIRE, CULTURE, AND ECONOMY IN EARLY-AMERICAN LITERATURE
Andros Bello, "Agriculture in the Torrid Zone" (CP).
DUE: DRAFT 1, PAPER # 2 (3-5 PS).
Ebeneezer Cooke, The Sot- Weed Factor (CP)
Thomas Jefferson, Notes on the State of Virginia (in The Portable Jefferson, part I
DUE: FINAL DRAFT, PAPER # 2.
D. THE LIFES AND EDUCATION OF MEN AND WOMEN IN THE EARLY AMERICAS
Benjamin Franklin, Auotbiography (Signet).
F 10/23 Franklin, cont.
Olaudah Equiano, The Interesting Narrative
W 10/28 Equiano, cont.
MOVIE: Son of Africa
Ann Bradstreet, Selected Writings (CP)
Sor Juana Inez de la Cruz, La Respuesta /The Answer.
DUE: STATEMENT OF PURPOSE PAPER # 3
Sor Juana, "First Dream"
Movie: (optional) 1, the worst of all.
E. TRAVEL, SCIENCE, AND COLONIAL CHARACTER
William Byrd, History of the Dividing Line, part I
DUE: DRAFT 1, PAPER #3 (5-7 ps).
W 11/11 Byrd, cont.
Alonso Canio de la Vandera, A Guide for Blind Travellers between Buenos Aires and Lima. (CP).
DUE: FINAL DRAFT, PAPER # 3 (5-7 ps.)
J. Hector St. Jean de Crevecoeur, Letters from an.American Farmer, part 1.
Crevecoeur, Letters, cont
Crevecocur, "Sketches of Eighteenth-Century America."
Susanna Rowson, Charlotte Temple.
W 11/25 Rowson, cont.
Sarmiento, Life in the Argentine Republic.
W 12/2 Sarmiento, cont.
Charles Brockden Brown, Edgar Huntley.
DUE: STATEMENT OF PURPOSE PAPER 4
W 12/9 Brown, cont.
DUE: DRAFT I, PAPER # 4 (7 ps)
- FINAL EXAM.
- DUE: PAPER 4, FINAL DRAFT
- DUE: ALL COURSE WORK (including e-mail group discussion print-outs, drafts, and papers).
1. READING ASSIGNMENTS
are to be completed by the beginning of the class period assigned for discussion of a given text.
2. WRITTEN ASSIGNMENTS
a. e-mail discussion
Once a week, on a day specifically assigned to you, you will contribute to a discussion which you will be having with three or four other students in the class throughout the term. In your e-mail group conversation, you will discuss any observations you or your peers can make about the literature or any connections you may find between texts or between the primary and the secondary materials. In class, you will sometimes be asked to report on your group discussion. The purpose of this assignment is to allow you to build a community with your peers and to further collaborative learning.
There are two kinds of papers in this class: (a) informal PRELIMINARY DRAFTS at various stages of perfection-(typed) and (b) FINAL DRAFTS (two 3-4-page and two 5-7- page), which are expected to be up to professional standards (typed, double-spaced, referenced, edited, etc.). PRELEMINARY DRAFTS are not graded individually, but as a whole process at the end of the term (how much improvement you have made from one to the next draft). FINAL DRAFTS are graded as individual performances, independent of how much you have improved. You may revise one final paper for a better grade after talking to me first. The grade assigned to the revision will be averaged out with the original grade.
These short quizzes (essay and/or multiple choice) will periodically be given at the beginning of class in order to review the out-of-class reading assignments.
3. ORAL ASSIGNMENTS
a. student presentations
Every student will give two 10-15 minute presentations on texts of his/her choice. The presentation off a given text is to be given at the beginning of the class period assigned for discussion of that text. Presentations may provide historical/biographical background information and point out how this information is relevant to our reading of the text or identify one or two-themes, raise questions/issues in the text and -speculate on answers. Also, every presenter should have a number of questions for class discussion.
b. class participation
Every student will be expected to participate in class discussions.
Although you may be able to clear certain questions over e-mail, you are still strongly advised to see me frequently in order to talk about your work in general during office hours. If you cannot see me during my regularly scheduled office hours, arrange other times with me. During weeks when papers are due, you will be encouraged to sign up for extra conferences specifically intended to assist you in the writing process.
A substantive part of your leaming experience in this class will depend on your participation in class discussion, as well as receiving and giving responses to the written work which students bring in. Therefore regular attendance is imperative and required. Attendance will be taken at every meeting. Tardiness disrupts the class and will not be looked upon kindly. Three tardies will therefore count as one absence. If you have more than three unexcused absences at the end of the semester, your final grade will be lowered by 0. I points for every absence (after the third). Students who have more than a total of 8 unexcused absences will automatically fail this course. In order to be excused from an absence in case of a serious illness, you must produce a written explanation for your absence and proper and official documentation attesting to your illness. Obligations to teams, sororities or fraternities, clubs, jobs, other courses or appointments with professors/advisors will not-be considered to be valid excuses.
1. Paper I .............. 15%
2. Paper R ............ 15%
3. Paper IR ........... 15%
4. Paper TV .......... 15%
5. Presentations ......... 10%
6. Drafting/Revising ....10%
7. Participation ............10%
8. E-mail Discussion.....10%