AsSiGNMENTS

English 3900 Critical Approaches to Literature, Fall 2020

TR 3:30-4:45 p.m., Online

Interpretation Survey

Spend a few moments writing all the questions you ask of every work of literature you read and post to GeorgiaVIEW > Discussions > Assignments and Discussion Questions. We'll post your questions here, and throughout the semester we'll compare them to the questions the theorists we're reading would ask.

 

Here are the questions our class asks:

Here are the questions the theorists we're reading would ask any work of literature:

Discussion Questions

In addition to participating in Zoom meetings of the entire class and Zoom breakout meetings for small group activities, you can also respond to questions on the GeorigaVIEW discussion forum.

Small Group Activities

In addition to participating in Zoom meetings of the entire class and the GeorgiaVIEW discussion forum, you can also work with small groups in Zoom breakout rooms.

 

Zoom Breakout Room Students

Breakout Room 1

Christina Agramonte

Austin Cole

Signe Madson

Breakout Room 2

Rosalie Bodkin

Alex West

Breakout Room 3

Grace Carlson

Caleb James

Ellen Yeudall

Article Summary and Article Application

The informal article summary compels you to practice determining the key ideas of a specific theorist's essay, and the informal article application compels you to apply a specific theorist's ideas when interpreting a work of literature. In order to develop tentative understanding of sometimes difficult ideas, you will pair up to discuss the article, and then one person will summarize it and the other will apply it. Over the course of the semester, you will both summarize an article and apply an article.

Article Summary

The article summary, which will summarize a particular theorist's essay, should

Article Application

The article application, which will critically read a work of literature by applying a particular theorist's ideas, should

Due Dates

  1. Your written assignment will be due in two places (first, GeorgiaVIEW > Course Work > Discussions and, second, either Assignments > Article Summary or Assignments > Article Application) two days before we are scheduled to discuss an article. Failing to submit to GeorgiaVIEW means failure of the assignment.
  2. I will return your graded assignment to you in GeorgiaVIEW > Course Work > Assignments > Article Summary or Article Application approximately one week after we discuss the article in class. Due to GeorgiaVIEW limitations, I am unable to return graded assignments to you unless and until you submit them to the Assignment dropbox. Here's how to calculate your course grade.
  3. For example, we are scheduled to discuss Kristeva and Deleuze and Guattari on Thursday, 9-3. Therefore, someone's article summary and someone else's article application will be due in GeorgiaVIEW on Tuesday, 9-1. Those two students will choose which article (Kristeva's or Deleuze and Guattari's); and they will meet to discuss the article's main ideas and how to apply it to a work of literature we're reading in class. Then, each student will write their own paper, either summary or evaluation and post it to the class discussion board by Tuesday, 9-1. I will return the graded article summary and application to the students the following week in GeorgiaVIEW > Course Work > Assignments > Article Summary or Article Application.

Sign Up

Sign up here for two slots: one article summary (sum) and one article application (app) at least three weeks apart. Note that you will discuss the article with the other person scheduled to write about it as well as coordinate your summaries and applications.

 

Due Date

Reading

Student

S, 8-30

1 Lacan

sum Alex West

app

T, 9-1

2 Kristeva or

Deleuze and Guattari

sum Austin Cole

app Grace Carlson

S, 9-6

3 Mulvey

sum Rosalie Bodkin

app Signe Madson

S, 9-27

4 Williams or

Jameson

sum Christina Agramonte

app Caleb James

T, 9-29

5 Althusser

sum Signe Madson

app Ellen Yeudall

S, 10-11

6 Wittig or Crenshaw

sum Caleb James

app Christina Agramonte

T, 10-20

7 Halberstam or Rubin

sum Ellen Yeudall

app Rosalie Bodkin

T, 11-3

8 Fanon

sum Grace Carlson

app Austin Cole

9 Said

sum

app Alex West

Interpretation Exercise

While the article summary compels you to practice determining the key ideas of a specific theorist's essay and the article application compels you to apply a specific theorist's ideas when interpreting a work of literature, in an informal manner and with help of a partner, the interpretation exercise requires you to work alone to complete an interpretation exercise in Lois Tyson's Using Critical Theory and then compose a formal essay that applies the general concepts of a critical approach in the interpretation of a work of literature as well as the specific concepts from one or two particular theorists of the critical approach. Your written essay should be built from the interpretation exercise, guided by a thesis, and prove a theoretically informed interpretation of a work of literature using appropriate evidence. Your well-organized presentation should clearly convey how you are using concepts from the critical theory to interpret the work of literature.

Parameters

Sign Up

Sign up here for one interpretation exercise slot. I strongly recommend that your interpretation exercise be scheduled two or three weeks apart from your article summary and article application.

 

Due Date

Exercise

Student

T, 9-10

Tyson, Psychoanalytic Theory:

Dickinson, Ellison, or Faulkner

1

Tyson, Psychoanalytic Theory:

Gomez or Walker

2

T, 10-6

Tyson, Marxist Theory:

Dickinson or Ellison

3 Signe Madson

Tyson, Marxist Theory:

Faulkner, Gomez, or Walker

4 Alex West

R, 10-15

Tyson, Feminist Theory:

Dickinson, Ellison, or Faulkner

5 Ellen Yeudall

Tyson, Feminist Theory:

Gomez or Walker

6 Austin Cole

T, 10-27

Tyson, Lesbian, Gay, and Queer Theory:

Dickinson or Ellison

(the student who signs up for this slot may may submit Exam 2 on T, 11-3)

7 Rosalie Bodkin

Tyson, Lesbian, Gay, and Queer Theory:

Faulkner, Gomez, or Walker

(the student who signs up for this slot may may submit Exam 2 on T, 11-3)

8 Christina Agramonte

T, 11-10

Tyson, Postcolonial Theory:

Dickinson, Ellison, or Faulkner

9 Caleb James

Tyson, Postcolonial Theory:

Gomez or Walker

10 Grace Carlson

Group Presentation

In the formal presentation, two or three groups of students will collaborate to teach two of the following eight critical approaches to the class:

On Thursday, October 22, students will form groups. By Thursday, November 5, groups will inform the professor of their first and second choice.

 

One week before the presentation, the group should inform the class of what 1 overview article and 1 theoretical article it will teach as well as provide the professor with copies of the articles (if not in Tyson's Critical Theory Today and Leitch's The Norton Anthology of Theory & Criticism ).

 

During the 30-45 minute presentation followed by 10 minute question and answer session, the group should

Parameters

Sign Up

You will sign up for groups on Thursday, October 22.

 

Date Theory Students

T, 11-17

Group 1

Ecocriticism

Rosalie Bodkin

Caleb James

Signe Madson

Ellen Yeudall

R, 11-19

Group 2

Deconstruction

Christina Agramonte

Grace Carlson

Austin Cole

Alex West

Exam 1

Exam 1 will cover formalism (New Criticism) and psychoanalysis. There will be two essay questions. In the first essay, you will be asked to compare and contrast the formalist and psychoanalytic methodologies. The second essay question will ask you to demonstrate and practice the formalist and psychoanalytical approaches to literature on your choice of one text from the following: 1) Anne Sexton's poem "The Black Art" or 2) Lorrie Moore's short story "How to Be an Other Woman," both available in the GeorgiaVIEW course packet.

 

Your theory essay will be graded on 1) your ability to balance a broad understanding of the general theory with a healthy amount of specific terms from particular theorists as well as on 2) your ability to assess similarities and differences between the two general theories.

 

Your application essay grade will be based on how you interpret the text; in other words, illustrate your understanding of the critical methodologies by making apparent the questions a New Critic and psychoanalytic critic ask of a text.

Parameters

Exam 2

Exam 3

Student Work of Literature Theorists