This is the easiest 10% of your grade. Just show up.
To offer you some extraneous incentive to do the reading, you will be tested on several of the longer texts you are required to read. The grading for these tests will be uneven, so the grade for any one test may count for more or less than any other. Your final reading test grade will be an average of all the reading tests. Strong hint: You have to be present and to have done the reading to do well on the reading tests.
Throughout the year you will be given short writing assignments. The grade assigned for these works will be an average of all the grades given for the assignments. If you fail to submit any one assignment, you’ll thus suffer in two ways: first, you'll rob yourself of the opportunity to learn, to improve your writing, and to engage in the practice of writing, and second, you’ll automatically lower your final grade by reducing your average grade in this category.
When our Liaison Librarian Erin Patterson visits the class (Oct. 12 & 14) she will assign you some work to do in the library.
First Term Paper
Expository essay: Demonstrate your knowledge on a topic, and communicate information clearly.
Compare and contrast: Oedipus to Beowulf, or “The Miller’s Tale” to The Faerie Queene.
Clearly show your familiarity with both texts as you find some point to argue, e.g. that the lesson offered by Oedipus Rex is more relevant to you than is the thesis of Beowulf, or that Beowulf is more inspiring. Present your argument point-by-point, comparing similarities in the two texts and contrasting differences.
DUE: Week 10
Second Term Paper
First, read Hans Fallada's Every Man Dies Alone. Ideally, read it a second time. Those who read a work more than once are far more capable of writing about it in an informed and thoughtful manner. The specific expectations for this paper will be given to you in class before we begin to discuss the novel in February.
DUE: Week 20
On the last day of class, we will work together to build a comprehensive exam. Yes, that means that the exam will cover the entire year, from Sophocles to the Modernists.