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English: Seminar in American Lit I

ENGS 023 OL1 (CRN: 61865)

3 Credit Hours

About ENGS 023 OL1

Selected texts from the beginnings to the Civil War. Explores periodization, genre, key terms and concepts through close reading and critical analysis. Fulfills major requirements; open to non-majors.



Dates: May 18 - June 12, 2020

More Information

Section Description

This Intro to literary analysis focuses on works written across various genres from the pre-colonial to the 19th century, with a special emphasis on the rise of post-revolutionary "American Literature." Texts include Native American myths and legends, pioneering colonial poetry, shockingly personal colonial diaries, moving autobiographies from founding fathers and Americans who escaped slavery. We’ll explore the rise of the short story as well as radically new poetic forms. Authors include Anne Bradstreet, Ben Franklin, Edgar Allan Poe, Herman Melville, Harriet Jacobs, Frederick Douglass, Walt Whitman, Emily Dickinson and more. There are no prerequisites for this class.

Section Expectation

Students will be expected to: read, engage in class discussion via wikis (not “live” but with ongoing posts), post short draft essays to the discussion board weekly (300-500 words), draft a final paper (a 1200-1500 word expansion/revision of one of your weekly essays), demonstrate a good command of critical terms, and participate actively in peer review.


Grades will be based on timely participation and writing assignments. Weekly short essays will be evaluated for critical analysis content, mainly. The final paper draft of the final essay will be evaluated for content, organization and polish. Your performance in peer review will be evaluated for attention to detail, critical analysis and constructive, well-supported suggestions.




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