ENAM 712




    The primary readings for the course are the same as those for ENAM 312, and like the students in 312 you'll take a final exam. Your writing assignments are different. During the semester you'll write (1) one 9-12 page essay, (2) two 2-3 page reviews, and (3) at least 2 e-mail postings/responses.

    (1) The final essay is due Monday, April 29th -- the last day of class. This will be the single most important assignment. I'll go into more detail about it later, and I'll encourage you to come and talk over your ideas with me as you develop them -- but for now you should know that you'll be allowed to write on whatever author/topic from our reading list interests you most.

    We won't meet physically as a class, but I'm hoping we can create a kind of community in virtual reality. The other two sets of assignments are intended to help nurture that. (2) The two reviews will give you a chance to explore secondary sources on two of the authors we'll read, and by sharing what you find with the class, to contribute to and enlarge our "conversation" about American Lit since 1865. You start by picking an author from each half of the semester (Whitman - Eliot, then Williams - Sexton). By Friday February 1 you'll meet with me in my office to choose an article or book chapter dealing with an author from the first half. Then by Friday March 1 you'll write and submit to me and to the rest of the class a 600-word (approximately) review of the article/chapter. Reviews should address themselves to the class as a group, and include both a summary and an evaulation of the critic's argument. It would be especially useful to suggest how this other reading of one of our authors complements, complicates, confounds, etc., the line I've taken in the lectures. You'll submit the reviews electronically, with HTML tagging, so that I can post them to this website for the rest of the class to read. You don't need to know any HTML tagging; after writing your review, you'll simply have to add the tags according to THIS MODEL.

By Friday March 22 we'll meet individually again in my office, and you'll pick an article or chapter about an author read in the second half of the course. You'll write, tag and electronically submit another 600-word review to me by Wednesday April 3, and again I'll post them for the whole class to read.

    (3) Both the essay and the reviews will be graded. The e-mail postings won't, but I'm hoping you'll still take them seriously as a way to express yourself and "hear" other voices during the term. "Posting" means that each of you will, according to THIS SCHEDULE, send the group 400 (or so) words expressing one or two of your ideas, observations or questions about one of the authors we'll read. "Replying" means that, again according to assignments on THE SCHEDULE, you'll also write a 400 (or so) word reply to another student's posting. Everyone will post once, and must reply at least once, but it would be great if you reply as often as the spirits (of interpretation, of community) move you. You can get all our e-mail addresses from the CLASS LIST, but I'll also send an e-mail to the whole group early in the term, and you can just save that and use "Reply All" as a way to mail all of us at once.