Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Course Syllabus: 2009 version

Be up-to-date with the reading schedule and you will be ahead of lecture. Note, however, that this schedule is not a Procrustean bed : week by week, lecture will follow students' developing interests and the course dynamic. Thus will all material be covered, sublimely, by the end.

September : L.M. Montgomery, Emily of New Moon
Course Wk. 2: L.M. Montgomery, Emily of New Moon
Course Wk. 3: Kingsley Amis, Lucky Jim
Course Wk. 4: Kingsley Amis, Lucky Jim
Course Wk. 5: Stella Gibbons, Cold Comfort Farm
Course Wk. 6: Stella Gibbons, Cold Comfort Farm
Course Wk. 7: Anthony Burgess, A Clockwork Orange
Course Wk. 8: Anthony Burgess, A Clockwork Orange
Course Wk. 9: Helen Fielding, Bridget Jones's Diary
Course Wk. 10: Helen Fielding, Bridget Jones's Diary
Course Wk. 11: Nick Hornby, High Fidelity
Course Wk. 12: Nick Hornby, High Fidelity

Nb: “For purposes of the Class Participation Grade, attendance and punctuality in seminar and at lecture, as well as constructive contributions to discussion, are necessary conditions.

Schedule of Assignment Due Dates
(Assignments coded by colour. See separate assignment posts for details.)

Nb: There is a five percent per day late penalty for all assignments, documented medical or bereavement leave excepted. For medical exemptions, provide a letter from a physician on letterhead which declares his or her medical judgement that illness or injury prevented work on the essay.(The precise word "prevented" must be used in the letter.) The letter must cover the entire period over which the assignment was scheduled and may be verified by telephone.

September 9th, Seminar Writing Presentation #1, in-class.
September 16th: Group Project dates selected.
September 30th, Mid-Term Essay topics posted.
October 7th: Mid-Term Essay peer editing of thesis ¶ or draft outline.
October 14th: Seminar Writing Presentation #2, in-class
October 21st: Mid-Term Essay draft version due in class.
November 4th: Seminar Writing Presentation #3, in-class.
November 4th: Mid-Term Essay draft version returned with comments & conditional grade.
November 18th, Mid-Term Essay peer-editing of preliminary revision.
November 25th, Mid-Term Essay revision due in class.
December 2nd: Mid-Term Essay revision returned with summary comments & final grade
December 16th, Final Examination.

Three Seminar Writing Presentations
Three short in-class writing presentations, three hundred words each, designed to let you display and then analyse your ability to express your critical readings skill in written form. These assignments require you to justify to the class your writing method; receive constructive response from peers and Instructor; and prepare you practically for the Mid-term Essay and Final Essay respectively.

Group Popular Culture Project
A creative project for groups of two that allows you to engage with the present-day cultural context of our course novels. Each group can schedule their presentation on their most suitable available date. Presented in-class, the project will show an example from popular culture--advertising, film, television, etc.--that enlightens and contextualises the course thesis on the differing representations of masculinity and femininity in 20th & 21st century Western society from which our course authors have derived their unique literary engagements.

Mid-Term Essay
A relaxed eleven-week writing path which provides ample time, resources and in-class opportunity to perfect the writing and revision process, in line with the "Writing Intensive" designation for this course.

Final Examination
Open-book Final Examination: Wednesday December 16th 19:00- 22:00, room HCC2245.

Instructor Contact: Office Hours: AQ 6094 -- Tuesday one o'clock to three o'clock, Wednesday in person after class. E-mail to Telephone 778-782-5820

Course Approach:
The course will read the books on their own terms, from the axiom that they 'instruct by delighting.' The books share a common characteristic of post-war British novels that focus on maleness or femaleness. Specifically, female protagonists triumph—in terms that are realistic and are her own—where male protagonists experience crises of masculine identity which resolve themselves only after they learn to accomodate diminishment or failure.The arc, that is, of the female-centred novel is upward, but downward for the male-centred novels. The teleology of the course is toward understanding of how the fiction expresses confidence and triumph "....intimately connected to the workings of the society around it." [Peter Keating.]

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