English 207-01 Survey of American Literature
Order ID:89JHGSJE83839 Style:APA/MLA/Harvard/Chicago Pages:5-10
English 207-01 Survey of American Literature
English 207-01 Survey of American Literature I
The Norton Anthology of American Literature: Beginnings to 1865 shorter 9th edition
Course Description: English 207 offers a broad survey of American literature, from the beginnings, through the colonial era, to just after the 19th century. In addition to major issues and writers (which will include both men and women of European, Native American, and African ancestry—the three chief cultures that intermixed throughout American history), students will study the literary genres characteristic of these periods. Class sessions will be a mixture of lecture and discussion.
for CLASS ESSAYS
Content: (points indicate DEDUCTIONS)
Adequate length (points are deducted fractionally, depending on how far the essay falls short of the length, before any other point deduction is even considered)
Unclear thesis statement (10 points)
Extensive plot summary (15 points)
Poor organization, focus, and/or paragraphing (10 points)
“Padding” (10 points)
Nonexistent conclusion (10 points)
Weak and/or repetitive conclusion (5 points)
Missing quotes WITH citations (10 points)
No Works Cited page (10 points)
Style: (points indicate DEDUCTIONS)
For each of the following—5 points if few, 10 points if regular, and 15 points if rampant:
- Word choice
MLA format: (according to example provided in the syllabus) first-page header, last- name pagination (at the header, or half-inch, top margin), double-spacing, 12-point Times New Roman font, one-inch margins, parenthetical page citation (5 points)
English 207 Essay: The American Dream vs. the American Gothic
The “American Dream” is and always has been especially ripe for gothic potential; “dream” implies an ideal, and ideals by definition are lofty, abstract, whimsical, and naively hopeful. Taking nothing away from American idealism, the American Gothic is, in fact, its dark twin—the sobering, self-examining reality check working to “keep it honest,” so to speak.
SOCIAL/HISTORICAL SIGNIFICANCE OF THE AMERICAN GOTHIC:
- Race (Indian wars, slavery, immigration, Reconstruction, etc.)
- Religion (perverse justification for Anglo-centric Manifest Destiny; the fire-and-brimstone darkness and guilt of Puritan heritage—especially the Salem witch trials)
- Gender and sexuality
- Territorial expansion and urban growth (and the victims of such)
SITES OF THE AMERICAN GOTHIC EXPERIENCE: (All fall under westward expansion, Manifest Destiny.) the frontier, the wilderness, the city, and old houses (especially later, though still present even before the frontier closed in the late 19th century; especially important for the 20th century)—vs. the ancient baronial manors of the European Gothic
The American Gothic, then, is a lot “closer to home” than the European Gothic’s more fantastic focus on the supernatural.
The Gothic is all about the HIDDEN—the denied, the unspoken, the buried—and the UNCANNY (Freudian concept) return or revelation of what has been hidden or denied. Central to any study in the Gothic is Freud’s concept of THE UNCANNY (from his essay of the same name): fear arising from the familiar—when something long forgotten, suppressed, buried, etc. suddenly “rises to the surface” to be confronted, faced, acknowledged, dealt with. The key here is REPETITION, of the past and of people—déjà vu and doubling (especially of people)—which complicates identity and calls attention to the oppressive threat of a once-thought-done-with past.
Again, not all American works are as obviously gothic as others, but the methods and approaches of the Gothic are always there.
Compare how 2 works COVERED IN CLASS after the midterm point reflect the tension between the American Dream and the American Gothic. Keep style and imagery particularly in mind.
Length: 3 to 5 pages, MLA style
This is what individual anthology entries on your Works Cited page (completely separate page, with MLA-style pagination at top right) should look like: (the formula, then examples)
Last Name of Author, First and (if any) Middle Name of Author. Title of Work within
the Anthology (in quotation marks if a short story or a poem, underlined or
italicized if a play). The Full Name of the Anthology (underlined or italicized)
followed by the edition. Translator (Trans., only if the original work was not
written in English; first name first; if more than one, alphabetical by last name).
Editor (Ed., first name first; if more than one, alphabetical by last name). City
of Publication: Publishing Company, Latest Copyright Date. Pages that the
work occupies within the anthology (numbers only).
(Notice how the entries are listed alphabetically according to the author’s last name, and how they are reverse indented; that is, indented the opposite of how you indent a paragraph, with only the first line NOT indented.)
Sophocles. Oedipus the King. Backpack Literature: An Introduction to Fiction,
Poetry, Drama, and Writing 5thed. Trans. Dudley Fitts and Robert Fitzgerald. Ed.
Dana Gioia and X.J. Kennedy. Boston: Pearson, 2016. 690-732.
13 Questions Have to Be Answered
- (The American Dream) “Rip Van Winkle” So whats so gothic about it? And how is religion/ geography important? Vs (The American Gothic) Social Issues – Race, Religion, Gender and Sexuality, and Territorial Expansion, urban growth. SITES – the frontier, the wilderness, the city, old houses. Fred’s “The Uncanny”
- Nature = God (pantheistic). Transparent eye-ball” (the poet). Autodidacticism, direct experience. Words/language (poetic) = The highest means of man to achieve divine perception.
- (Cooper) discuss Natty and Chingachgook as DOUBLES and what it says about American frontierism.
- (Apess) How does Apess make use of irony to achieve his intended effect?
- (Hawthrone) How does he Gothicize the Puritans, considering his use of ambiguity and enigmatic objects?
- (Poe) How does his Gothicism/horror react against Emersonian Transcendentalism?
- A) Abraham Lincoln b) Harriet Beecher Stone c) Harriet Jacobs d) David Walker e) Martin Dealany f) William Llyod Garrison g) Angelina Grimke h) Sojourner Truth. Reacting to slavery particularly in light of, The Fugitive Slave Law of 1850 (part of the compromise of 1850). The Supreme Court Dred Scott vs Sanford ruling of 1857. How do each?
- Margaret Fuler’s Transcendentalist feminism: (TIMES) The Great Lawsuit: Man vs Man, Women vs Women. The Grand Radical Dualism. How do these works comment on a question gender?
- (Civil Disobedience) Harry David Thorean’s “Resistance to Civil Government” The Ideal man vs. government. Taxes. Voting. Slavery and the wars with Mexico. Transcendentalism. VS (Frederick Douglass) “What to the Slave is the 4th of July?” Its rhetorical strategy. Irony is argument.
- Herman Melville’s “Bartleby, the Scrivener” “I would prefer not to”. The setting. Class,capitalism + modernity (from agricultural to industrial). The gothic.
- Citing examples from her poems, discuss Dickinson’s Dark Romanticism. (3 paragraphs)
- How does both the form of Whitman’s poem and the imagery it uses reflect Emerson’s Transcendentalist call for an “American” poet?
- How does Davis use the Gothic toward her naturalism and muck-raking?