Sonntag, 3. Februar 2008
Don't Panic!
...especially not in room UA136, where our course will meet. Thanks for working so hard, you won't regret it! See you there.

Please make sure to click on "Ältere Beiträge" in each archive section, I put up lots of material for the course, especially comments on each text.

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Dienstag, 11. Dezember 2007
Ist speedreading sinnvoll?
DIE ZEIT


Eine Dreiviertelstunde für Harry

Schneller lesen mit Hilfe von Power- oder Visual Reading? Ein Selbstversuch im Dschungel der Schnell-Lesekurse.

Von Tonio Postel

Genau 47 Minuten soll Anne Jones, die Weltmeisterin im Schnelllesen, für den letzten Harry Potter-Band gebraucht haben. Alles eine Frage der Technik, sagt sie. Das will ich auch können. Was ließe sich da an Zeit sparen! Bildungslücken würden endlich geschlossen: Ein paar Wochen für die Klassiker der Weltliteratur, ein paar Tage für den Brockhaus. Und zwischendurch zehn Minuten für die ZEIT.

Übungsprogramme für schnelleres Lesen gibt es genug. Ich versuche es mit PoweReading. »Doppelt so schnell lesen bei gleichem Textverständnis. Garantiert!« steht auf der DVD-Hülle. Vorn reitet der Autor und Schnelllesetrainer Zach Davis in Anzug und Krawatte mit einem Surfbrett auf einer Welle aus Wörtern.

Zum Start des Programms wird nicht gelesen, sondern erst einmal viel gesprochen: Davis steht vor einem Flipchart und erklärt: Normalleser können etwa 200 Wörter pro Minute verarbeiten, Turboleser machen es nicht unter 1500 bis 2000. Davis spricht langsam und prononciert. Am Anfang eines Satzes faltet er seine Hände, um sie am Ende wieder auszubreiten. Wer schnell lesen lernen will, muss offenbar erst sehr langsames Sprechen ertragen.

Endlich kommt die erste Übung: Sie soll meine Lesegeschwindigkeit und mein Textverständnis messen. Ich lese den vorgegebenen Abschnitt, notiere die benötigte Zeit und beantworte danach Fragen zum Inhalt. 2,48 Minuten habe ich gebraucht, von zehn Antworten waren sieben richtig. Das ist okay, aber jetzt soll es besser werden.

Davis verrät seinen ersten Trick: Da sich das Auge beim Lesen nicht gleichmäßig von einem Wort zum nächsten bewege, sondern vor und zurück springe, gehe Zeit verloren. Ein Stift oder ein Finger, der unter der zu lesenden Zeile entlangfährt, soll das Auge einfangen und dem Hin und Her ein Ende machen. Mit dem Finger auf dem Text fühle ich mich wieder wie in der Grundschule.

Beim nächten Tipp soll die Blickspanne effektiver genutzt werden. Etwa zwei Zentimeter sei diese breit, sagt der Lesetrainer, »wir verschenken die Hälfte davon«. Sein Vorschlag: weiter innen in der Zeile beginnen zu lesen. »Ignoriere den Rand.« Genau diese Ansage macht ihn für mich erst interessant, und ich blicke instinktiv in die Verbotszone.

Dann kommt die »Drill-Einheit«: Eine sogenannte Hochgeschwindigkeitsübung steht an. Das Gehirn soll, ähnlich einem Muskel im Fitnessstudio, kontinuierlich »übertrainiert« werden, um das Lesetempo dauerhaft zu steigern. Meine Werte bleiben letztlich bei allen fünf Geschwindigkeitsmessungen in etwa gleich. Aber den Inhalt kann ich mir nicht mehr merken, zu sehr konzentriere ich mich darauf, die Powerlese-Regeln zu beachten. Aber Trainer Davis tröstet mich per Video: »Man muss nicht 100 Prozent eines Textes verstehen.« Es genügten die Schlüsselwörter.

Das reicht mir aber nicht. Überschriftenwissen habe ich schon, und von Harry Potter sollte mehr hängen bleiben als Quidditch und Gleis neundreiviertel. Schließlich will ich kein Bildungsmuggel bleiben.

Ich versuche es mit Visual Reading. Die Methode ist ähnlich, nur die Übungstexte sind komplizierter, richtige kleine Fachartikel. Die Fragen kann ich kaum beantworten. Dafür soll ich nach jeder Übung meinen Puls messen. Wozu das gut ist, erfahre ich nicht.

Mein Textverständnis liegt bei bescheidenen 20 Prozent. Bald schon wird klar, dass ich mich, nach den Maßstäben des Visual Reading, als »schwächeren Leser« einstufen muss. Ansonsten ähneln die Ratschläge jenen des PoweReading, auch wenn alles etwas wissenschaftlicher, ja: umständlicher, wirkt.

Der Autor Christian Grüning, der bereits Kinder einer Hochbegabtenförderung für die Gedächtnisweltmeisterschaften trainierte, spricht von chemischen Reaktionen, die beim Lesen und Verstehen ablaufen. Es kommen viele Begriffe vor wie »Interne Repräsentationen«, »Neurologische Bits«, »Regressionen« oder »visueller Kanal«. Ich erfahre, welche Aufgaben beim Lesen vom limbischen Gehirn, vom Stammhirn oder vom Neocortex übernommen werden. Eine Erkenntnis lautet: »Beim zügigen Lesen hat man kaum noch Möglichkeiten abzuschweifen, ist voll und ganz mit dem Lesevorgang beschäftigt«, wohingegen das Lesen, »wie man es aus der Schule kennt«, ein »ideales Schlafmittel« sei.

Ich gebe mich geschlagen und frage einen Fachmann: Kann man sein Ergebnis anhand solcher Anweisungen tatsächlich verbessern? Ernst Pöppel, Neurowissenschaftler am Institut für Psychologie an der Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität in München, hält allein den Ansatz für »ziemlich dämlich«. Wenn man etwas wirklich verstehen wolle, sei das oberste Gebot die Langsamkeit: »Dann muss ich Wort für Wort lesen.«

Pöppel kritisiert, dass wir »schon in der Schule auf Schnelligkeit getrimmt« würden. Das sei falsch. »Wir verwechseln Schnelligkeit oft mit Intelligenz.« Man solle sich Zeit lassen für einen Text, um ihn umfassend verstehen zu können. Nur wenn man in etwa wisse, was einen inhaltlich erwarte, beispielsweise bei einer Doktorarbeit, sei ein »hypothesenorientiertes« Lesen, also ein Überfliegen des Textes nach Stichwörtern, plausibel.

Ich werde mich wohl von der Idee verabschieden müssen, so schnell lesen zu können wie Anne Jones, und konzentriere mich lieber wieder auf einen anderen Aspekt beim Lesen: den Genuss. Davon war in keinem der Programme die Rede.

DIE ZEIT, 22.11.2007 Nr. 48

48/2007
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Samstag, 25. August 2007
The Big, Scary Paper
Well, here are some more hints regarding the paper:

-Read the syllabus paragraph closely, it is designed to help you!

-If you have general problems with writing papers, are not used to writing them, don't really know where to start, I would recommend you read through the MLA Handbook from cover to cover, it is written in a very simple style and designed to help students who have no idea how to write a paper, or what a paper even is.

-Regarding the content, I am aware that there are different, i.e. deductive and inductive, styles of argumentation. Let me just say that as long as your paper and your paragraphs are well structured, I don't care.

That said, be aware that I generally believe that a paper caters to the reader, and therefore ought to always
1) let the reader know where in the overall structure of the paper they are,
2) be stylistically appropriate, and
3) show that the author is aware of what they are supposed to do.

Regarding 1):
ideally you structure the text not by headlines or such clumsy instruments, but by having a neat, tight, logical, and developing structure of content. Ask your composition teachers (essay writing courses) on how to do this. A good book is Strunck&White, as noted on your syllabus, they explain a lot. A neat trick is this: you start out with a million headlines, sub-headlines, and so forth. Go all the way, be at 1.2.2.2.2.3.4.5.a if you want. Then, turn each of these headlines into a phrase, or sentence WITHIN the flowing text, and only keep the most central headlines. This way, you can easily compose the text and put in all your sources, then later have a polished text that looks as if you had this layout in mind as you wrote the text (which would be the ideal, but that takes a lot of practice. If you can do that, way to go and ignore the above-said).

Regarding 2):
a paper is not a poem, but it is not an instruction on how to build a desk either, make it interesting, but not a romance novel. Be aware that we are often influenced by the texts we read, and they tend to creep into our prose style. If you are working on Hemingway or James that may not be that problematic, but if you read a lot of Melville or Emerson, you may end up with sprawling sentences or ellipsis, which really aren't supposed to show up in academic research papers.

Regarding 3):
show that you know what the topic of your paper is, what it implies, and, more importantly, what it is NOT. You are a student writing a paper on a specific question within the field of research around a specific text or body of texts in literary sciences. You do not have to reinvent the wheel, you do not have to deliver a doctorate thesis, you do not have to convince the professor that whatever they taught is wrong. You do have to show that you know your texts, that you know your topic, that you have a clear thesis you can prove based on text or other evidence, how your thesis relates to the existing body of research, and that you are able to deliver a paper based on established norms in the academic society.

Limit the scope of your paper until it becomes managable. Many topics are in dire need of book-length treatment, but you neither have the time, nor the equipment at this point to write a book. So let us narrow it down. Perhaps there is a specific passage you have in mind, maybe a monologue or a certain application of one topic, so that can help you cut down the scope. It is always better to deliver a thorough, exhaustive, and well-thought through paper one a very specific topic than a superficial scanning or survey of the history of world literature, so use limiting: limit socio-historical topics to specific times, make them synchronic, not diachronic, for example, or exclude other approaches to your topic that pop up in secondary literature you read. The most common way to do that is already present on your syllabus. A paper title often contains a catchy, attention-grabbing general title, like a quote or a controversial phrase, followed by a colon, and then the acutal topic of the paper. Look at some linguistics books, and you will find long, complicated treatments with one single word, colon, and then a five- or ten-line narrowing-down of the topic. You may think, this is too specific, but think again, because these texts can be very long and yet be extremely specific. Any reader will be happy to read a paper that thinks its topic over and over, that really goes in deep and developes one or several layers of abstraction, that finds nuances in the text and delivers good text analysis together with solid secondary literature. A good way to shortcut and abbreviate discussions that are generally referenced with regard to your topic but that you think is not that central to your text is to mention them with a sentence and citation of relevant texts and positions in your footnotes or endnotes.

Unless you are very, very, very creative, assume that what you are working on has been written on by people decades before you were born. So you need to show that you are well-aware of the research that came before you, of the established body of research in your field, that is. So start out with recent articles and books on the subject, note down sources they use and make sure to check them out, especially if they keep referring to them or if the same texts are cited by more than one person or often...it probably is a central text regarding your topic that you should have read. Position yourself clearly with regard to these texts, that is, think about what your thesis is and if you agree or disagree with these scientist, if you change an existing approach or opinion, or if you found a totally different way of thinking about the text. Make sure you point this out and discuss all relevant texts in an academic format (check the MLA for more details).

Have a clear thesis and know what you are saying and what you are not saying. If you become ambiguous, your reader (and in this case the person grading you) will be confused and may misunderstand your paper, possibly entirely misconceiving it and finally thinking it is nonsense.

If possible, recognize the theoretical foundations in which your thesis is rooted (and trust me, there is almost nothing you can say that does not reflect a theoretical or philosophical assumption to some degree). This is important, because you may actually have a thesis that conflicts with your theoretical assumptions, and that will show in the paper. Let's assume, for example, that you think texts are products of their authors, that authors are in control of what they write, and that the text is the precise reflection of the author's intention. This is a highly debated statement, obvious though it may seem, check out poststructuralism for opposition to this idea. Now, if you use one group of critics that also say more or less that, then you are fine, so go ahead and quote Matthiessen, Ransom, Wimsatt, Beardsley. You might, however, work on the imagery in Moby Dick, and find a great text you want to quote that was written by Derrida, Lacan, Foucault, or Barthes. They would disagree with your basic assumption about the nature of writing, writers, and texts. This will almost certainly clash with your argument, even if you don't see it right away. So especially if you try to pimp your paper with a lot of bling theory, make sure you know at least who is friend and foe, and where you stand.

-Last but not least, ask older students, and, of course, the teacher!

Oh, and a note from personal experience. Write down the full citation when you read something that you want to use, and start from the beginning with a MLA citation format AS YOU ARE WRITING! Nothing is more frustrating than to have the dreaded paper formatting behind you and then to have to go in and spend days at the library trying to find that one book where you read that one sentence about that one guy who said something cool. It's not worth the pain, just jot it down on a piece of paper.
You need: Author, Title, Place of publication, Publisher, Year, page numbers (if applicable also: Editor(s), Book and Article Title(s)).
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Samstag, 21. Juli 2007
Sign-up sheet
The Old Manse Emerson and Hawthorne lived in
If you want to participate in this course, please sign up here and please drop me an email, that way you won't have to publish your email here online and fall prey to spam.
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(To sign up, add a comment, state name, semester, major/minors)
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Freitag, 20. Juli 2007
Welcome!
Welcome my dear friends, to the show that never ends....
-ELP

This show is certain to end, and that rather quickly, but at least here we will have some time before, during, and after the actual class to discuss texts, ask questions, (hopefully) find answers.

This blog is an additional outlet for the course participants, a way to contact your instructor (that would be me, Sören Fröhlich), and to discuss your findings in a more fashionable way than writing letters to me or waiting for the class.

Whenever you find yourself stuck with your reading, post a story or add a comment regarding it, and we all will help to the best of our abilities.

Whenever you have a question that you feel is not that relevant to the course, but that you want to discuss anyway, post it.

Whenever you found something you think is neat and want to share it, go ahead.

Oh, and if you are absolutely worried about signing up with blogger.de to comment here--sorry about that, I just don't have a website where I could publish this site--just email me your comments, I will happily publish them for you. Also, since this is a blog, I have no choice but to post the most recent post on top, so don't let yourself be confused by this reversed order.

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Some "fine print" regarding the status of this blog:

Please respect this space as an official site associated with the course, so watch your language and refrain from inappropriate comments, they could be censored.

Now, let me make some things clear: what happens here, stays here (as they say about Vegas), and it has NO formal bearing on the course as such.
In other words: unless I ask you to post something here or the like, the posts here are NOT a formal part of your grade, which
a) hopefully will relax you...there is no "right" or "wrong" here (though there rarely will be one in the classroom anyhow)
b) will not help you if you miss your deadlines ony any of the course requirements and then post something five to midnight...I will entirely disregard this and you'll be in trouble...apart from the fact that you will have shown that you were aware you're messing up, so you might be in even bigger trouble.
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Syllabus
Katholische Universität Eichstätt-Ingolstadt
Lehrstuhl für Amerikanistik
Wintersemester 2007/08
Proseminar: “The American Renaissance:
Canonical Cacophony of American Literature”
Instructor: Sören Fröhlich, M.A.

Syllabus
This Proseminar focuses on 19th century American literature.
Prerequisites are: successful passing of the “Introduction to Literary Studies,” advanced knowledge of English, a basic knowledge of American history, and a thirst of knowledge! This syllabus will be your course guide. The rules of the course are written down so that we will not have to spend much time discussing them in class, as we the course itself is meant to be fun and will focus on the material at hand.

Class Meeting Time and Place:
This class meets as a Blockseminar. That means that ALL units take place on four days (February 12th, 13th, 14th, and 15th), with a total of 6,5 hours (Zeitstunden) per day, in two sessions and a lunch break (so a day will look something like this: session 1 from 09:30-13:00, lunch break, session 2 from 14:00-17:00).

Signing up:
Since the instructor will unfortunately not be on campus until shortly before the course, you will want to communicate your intention to participate via email. You can also sign up on the course blog: http://www.americanrenaissance.blogger.de , but to protect your data—it is a public blog—please don’t post your email there, but sign up and drop your instructor a line via email. Your information will be deleted off the blog after the course is over, but the blog will remain online.

Instructor’s Contact Information:
Sören Fröhlich, M.A., Lehrbeauftragter
American Studies Department
KUE-I, Universitätsallee UA207

Office hours:
February 11th, 12th, 13th, and 14th: 9:00-9:25, UA207.
February 15th: 10:00-17:00,
or by appointment.
For appointments outside of these office hours please email me.

Goals:
This course aims to give students a firm understanding of works and authors of a certain period in the history of American Literature. In addition to introducing basic literary concepts, it furthermore stresses these basic skills: reading and analyzing English prose and poetry, researching, rewriting and presenting materials in a scientific manner, speaking freely before the class, and writing a paper with a clear thesis, according to scientific standards. As much as possible, and time permitting, we will attempt to achieve these goals through communicative activities in the group. This course will be reading-centered, so the chief requirement is that you make a commitment to keeping up with the reading, and that you come to class prepared to discuss what you have read. It is recommended that you read all literature at your own pace and leisure during the semester as you will most likely not be able to read the literature along with the course progression.

Required Books:
Except for full-length novels, required texts and materials will be copied in the course reader, available at the American Studies Department, UA209. All additional reading and discussions of the texts will be presented at www.americanrenaissance.blogger.de .

The short texts we will read:
· Hawthorne, Nathaniel. “Wakefield.”
· Melville, Herman. “Hawthorne and His Mosses,” “Bartleby the Scrivener.”
· Whitman, Walt. “Song of Myself,” “Drum-Taps,”
· Emerson, Ralph Waldo. “The American Scholar,” “Nature,” “Experience.”
· Poe, Edgar Allan. “The Tell-Tale Heart,” “The Black Cat,” “The Purloined Letter”
· Dickinson, Emily. “Dying,” “Parting,” “Pain Has An Element”

You MUST read the FULL text of and bring one copy for yourself (library, friend's book, bought, though purchasing is probably best any way is fine, just have it read before the lecture starts) to class of:
· Hawthorne, Nathaniel. The Scarlett Letter.
· Thoreau, Henry David. Walden, or Life in the Woods.
· Melville, Herman. Moby Dick.

Recommended:
(Beginning your quest to academic knowledge can be intimidating and confusing, so here are some general tools that may be of use to you, for more specific problems with any aspect of the material covered, please contact the instructor.)

Miscellaneous tools to help you with your writing:
· Roget's Thesaurus,
· Webster's Collegiate Dictionary (or comparable),
· German-English dictionary (PONS, Oxford-Duden, or comparable),
· Strunk&White. The Elements of Style. NYC: Longman Publishers,
· MLA Handbook (6th edition or 2nd ed. of the “Publishing Manual”).

Standard Resources for the Study of American Literature:
· Drabble, Margaret. The Oxford Companion to English Literature. Oxford: Oxford UP.
· Zapf, Hubert. Amerikanische Literaturgeschichte. Stuttgart: Metzler.
· Baym et al. The Norton Anthology of American Literature. NYC: W.W. Norton.
· Culler, Jonathan. Literary Theory: A Very Short Introduction. Oxford University Press.
· For basic questions regarding literary terms and concepts you may want to look into Abrams, Michael H. A Glossary of Literary Terms. Boston: Heinle&Heinle.
· Eagleton, Terry. Literary Theory: An Introduction. Malden: Blackwell.
· Jahn: Introduction to Narratology. http://www.uni-koeln.de/~ame02/pppn.htm
· Leitch, Vincent B. The Norton Anthology of Theory and Criticism. NYC: W.W. Norton.

Other Resources (Sonstiges):
· The course blog: http://www.americanrenaissance.blogger.de Feel free to discuss any issues related to the course on the blog right now. Since you will read the texts before coming to class, and since you will not see each other in the classroom, this is a good way to exchange ideas and opinions or ask questions. Your instructor will be participating in the blog activity, and can help you with any questions and/or problems you might have regarding the material. Additional course material will be posted on the blog. This material is not part of the reader, but is merely meant to help you in your research and your reading of the texts.
· The Sprachenzentrum
· University Library, check the OPAC. CAUTION: if you order books via Fernleihe, do it early, they may take weeks (part of writing a research paper is getting your sources together at the right time)!

Grades:
Your grade will be calculated according to the following percentages:

Presentation of assigned readings 35%
Oral Class Work 15%
Written Paper 50%
Total grade 100%


Grades issued are defined as follows:
1 Excellent
2 Good
3 Satisfactory
4 Passing, but unsatisfactory
5 Failing
6 Failed
Please note: Failing=4.6
Missing an assignment =6



The Paper:
Half of your grade depends on the quality of research paper you write.
The paper will be written in clear, college-level English, on DIN A-4 paper, 1.5 spaces, Times New Roman pt. 12 font, about 15 pages (15 plus end of paragraph, 14 to the very end of the page, not counting cover, index, and bibliography) with a cover sheet, an index or outline, an introduction, a main body, and a conclusion, as well as a section for works cited. Apart from this, your paper has to conform to the general standards explained in the MLA handbooks. Please ask any questions regarding the paper BEFORE starting on it, especially with regard to finding literature and citation (for example: Wikipedia is NOT a scientific resource, find the corresponding entry in the Encyclopaedia Britannica or, more ideally, in dictionaries specialized in your topic).
You have to chose the topic of the paper yourself and consult on the subject with the instructor BEFORE writing the paper (this is for your own protection, as instructors can often help you avoid bad topic choices). The paper will be written on the topic of your in-class presentation, unless you make other arrangements with the instructor if you find another, more interesting topic. Please give sufficient time for research and composition, as some topics can be very time-consuming. In the paper, you are expected to display a) a high level of familiarity with the topic discussed b) a familiarity with secondary sources that support and frame your thesis c) a firm grasp on formal aspects of scientific papers such as quotations, bibliography, and development of an original thesis by fully explaining it in an argument.
Alternatively, you can also write a 10-page essay on a topic. This essay will rely less on (but also cannot do without) formal requirements and secondary sources, but will be expected to show much deeper reflection on and a much more thorough understanding of the subject as well as a higher level of originality. Talk to the instructor if you prefer this form of a final paper.

A note on plagiarism (Plagiate):
Because a foreign language is best learned by communicating and interacting with others, I encourage you to work together to learn vocabulary, discuss texts and theories, to practice presentations, help each other out with words or phrases in class, or even to assist one another with written assignments.
However, there are limits, and plagiarism will result in automatic failing of the class. In this course, the following activities will be considered plagiarism:
· Cheating on tests, quizzes, questions, presentations, at home or in class.
· Copying someone else’s presentations, questions, or presentations.
· Copying papers from the internet or any other source, copying papers from other students, using ANY text without indicating the source in a scientifically sound way.
· Having someone else take tests or write papers for you.
(It is OK to cite original sources mentioned in one work and not that work itself as long as these sources are relevant to your paper. Best consult the MLA handbook on how to use texts in this way—you will have to add “as quoted in:”—because after all, they could have misquoted that original source.)

Attendance:
It is imperative that you attend our units (texts discussed). Any student who misses THREE or more class units will NOT receive a course grade. In addition, please be aware that there is a component in your grade for in-class work. If you are not in class, you can't earn this part of your grade unless you can prove medical or other such emergency.

Punctuality:
Due to the time constraint and the nature of the class, being on time is important!!! If you are late to any three or more units, this will count as one absence. Also, be prepared to explain yourself, in fluent English, if you stumble in at half past the hour, or to receive extra assignments! Fair warning is hereby given!

In the Classroom:
You are expected to be polite, to respect one another and me, and to pay attention for the entire class time. Please help make our classroom atmosphere congenial so that everyone is comfortable to participate.
· The official policy does not allow for eating or drinking in classrooms.
· Pop quizzes are fair game (bun unlikely).
· The classroom is English only, including all questions, answers, papers, presentations,
· Refer to specific passages or texts you read. If possible, be substantial.
· Come to class ready to participate.
· Make sure you have done the homework, slept and eaten!
· Do not speak out of turn.

Homework:
As with all university courses, you are expected to spend at least 2 hours on homework for every 45 minute lesson in the classroom. If you finish the homework assignment in less than 2 hours, it is best to use the extra time to prepare your own topic, look for relevant connections, go over the readings again, memorize vocabulary, or read more by an author you enjoyed reading.
-At any point you might have the following homework types of assignments for the next day:
1. A written assignment to be handed in or to be sent by email (please make sure your email works, no excuses).
2. A learning assignment, such as reading through an additional text.
3. Preparing questions on the texts you read.
-Assignments will be announced in class or on the course website.
-Any homework is due on the next class day and will NOT be accepted for credit afterward.
-You are expected to read and prepare the material to be covered in class BEFORE coming to class.

Approximate Schedule and Sample Topics:
You are expected to send in your topic with a short description together with a “handout” (thesis paper) to the instructor, at the latest two weeks before the classes start (on January 28, 2008).
(This is an approximate schedule of our course, we may vary content and time allotted to focus more on certain aspects and/or texts. Make sure you have read all texts before coming to class, to have your presentation ready and to be able to guide your fellow students through the topic and text you are presenting. The topics below are sample topics you may chose as they are, or which you may modify after checking with the instructor. You may also chose another topic altogether, if you feel comfortable with it and got an OK for that topic from your instructor.)

12.02.2008:
1. Formalities, Introduction
2. Before the American Renaissance
“The Establishment of 19th-century American Literature”
“Romanticism Versus the American Renaissance”
3. THE American Renaissance
“The American Renaissance: A Counterculture?”
“Cacophonous Canon: The Development of the American Renaissance in American Studies.”
4. Hawthorne
“Is the ‘A’ for Adultery?”
“The Doctor Is In: Chillingworth’s Science of Dissemination.”
5. Emerson (1)
“Signs of Spirit and Signs of Things: Emerson’s View on Language.”
13.02.2008:
1. Emerson (2)
2. Thoreau
“Thoreau: Punster Extraordinaire”
“Is Walden an Environmentalist Text?”
4. Whitman (1)
“Poe’s Rationcination and Whitman’s Cosmic Whole”
“‘Song of Myself’: An Encyclopedic Poem?”
“Whitman’s View(s) on Literature.”
14.02.08:
1. Whitman (2)
“The Body in ‘Song of Myself’.”
“The ‘Catalogues’ and Whitman’s View on Language.”
2. Melville (1)
“What Is Moby Dick?”
“American History in Moby Dick.”
“The Pequod as Melting-Pot?”
15.02.08:
1. Melville (2)
“The Whiteness of the Whale.”
“Obsession and Drivenness in Moby Dick.”
“Ahab: Visionary or Lunatic?”
2. A Darker Side
“‘Wakefield’ and the Problem of Perspective.”
“Whitman and War”
“How Significant is ‘Bartleby’ Today?”
“Poe and the American Renaissance”
“Dickinson and the American Renaissance”
3. Beyond the American Renaissance
“Literary Criticism and the Dead White Males.”
“Modernism and the American Renaissance”
“The American Renaissance Today”
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