Friday, July 30, 2010

Make-up work

To receive additional credit (5 pts. each) on your last unit test (1865-1914), send me these questions along with your answers no later than the evening of Tuesday, August 3, 2010. Finding answers to one or more of these questions may require going to sources we didn't consult in-class or in reading assignments. It's OK to help each other with your answers, but please do your own work--don't simply copy answers from a classmate.

Unit 3 - Supplementary Test Questions

1. Which writer we studied in this period worked as a Mississippi riverboat pilot?

2. Which writer that we studied during this period wrote about life in Louisiana and often reproduced the regional dialect in short stories?

3. By about what percentage did the U.S. population increase from 1860 to 1910?

4. What scientific book, by what author, continued to influence religious and social thinking during this period. Why was it so influential?

5. List five muckracker authors, the title of one of his or her books, and what the book was about.

6. In what story does Peyton Farquhar appear?

Monday, July 26, 2010

Online class for Tuesday

Your assignments for Tuesday are straight out of the tentative schedule: Washington (pp. 1628-38), London (pp. 1825-37), "Realism & Naturalism" (pp. 1745-47), Howells (pp.1747-50), and James (pp. 1750-52). Your work for Tuesday has three parts: an online quiz to be answered by email, an online discussion to be answered in the comments section, and readings you'll be quizzed over on Wednesday.

Part 1. Copy the quiz questions below and send them to me with your answers by email no later than Tuesday afternoon. My Motlow email address (the one I prefer for you to use) is on the top of your printed syllabus. If you can't find that address, then click the "View my complete profile" link in the right column of this page. You'll then find my email address in the left column of my profile page. The quiz is open-book, open notes.

Part 2. In the comments section at the bottom of this web posting, ask at least one question about today's readings. Please read everyone's questions and my answers; these questions and answers will constitute our in-class discussion for Tuesday.

Part 3. Do your assigned readings for Wednesday (Frost, Sandburg, Stevens, and Williams [but not Eliot]) and be prepared for an in-class quiz Wednesday.


ENGL 2030 Quiz
Tuesday, July 27, 2010

1. According to Booker T. Washington's Atlanta Exposition address, "No race can prosper till it learns that there is as much dignity in tilling a field as in _______________________."

2. Booker T. Washington wrote that blacks in the South would eventually have political rights. From what source did he believe those rights would not come, and what would be required for blacks to receive those rights eventually?

3. In naturalist novels, what happens to characters who "confront major crises"?

4. According to Howells, what should be "the only test of a novel's truth"?

5. Did Howells believe that great novels would have moral effects on the reader? Justify your answer with Howells's own words.

6. According to Henry James, what were the only two valid classifications for a novel?

7. According to James, "No good novel will ever proceed from _______________."

8. What caused the man in "To Build a Fire" to be shocked "as though he had just heard his own sentence of death"?

9. What was the temperature on the Yukon trail in "To Build a Fire?"

Update: One of you has emailed to say you had trouble posting comments. The trouble should be corrected now, but I'm going to post the question I've already received here.

Q: In Realism and Naturalism I do not understand how they were destroyed by them? Was there life destroyed? Was the person destroyed? I didn't understand this part in the reading.
A: The reference is to main characters in realist and naturalist novels. Naturalist novels are basically pessimistic, so that when fictional characters are challenged by overwhelming forces and challenges in life, they die or are crushed by them.

Update 2: Good grief; I'm not even able to comment on my own blog posting. To answer Taylor's question, Yes, that's certainly one way to put it. A realist or naturalist might have some sympathy for a nice guy, but not so much for a Christian. Darwin's concept of survival of the fittest played a big part in the realist's (and especially the naturalist's) worldview. -AMS

Update 3: Tuesday's class is now over. See you Wednesday.

On Monday's fiasco

Today when I arrived for class I was surprised to find none of you there. What to do? I've decided to do nothing, which means everyone not present will receive a zero on his or her participation and quiz grades. May this be a relatively inexpensive lesson in a couple of valuable points, not only for this course but for life in general:
  1. Don't rely on second-hand information when you can go straight to the horse's mouth. In this course the horse's mouth is this weblog, and it's a good idea to read it, yourself, every day. Remember that you, not any of your fellow students, are responsible for being where you're supposed to be and doing what you're supposed to do.
  2. Read carefully. Last Friday's blog post, unedited below, makes it clear that we were still scheduled to meet as a class on Monday.
I'll post Tuesday's online quiz shortly. Let's all move past this fiasco and show up for class Wednesday prepared and ready to go forward in our study of American literature.

Update: You may have noticed that the time stamp for this post gives a time before the class was actually scheduled to meet. That's because posts here have been stamped in Pacific Time. I've tried to correct the time-zone problem for future posts.

Friday, July 23, 2010

This coming week

Dear scholars, I have to attend a funeral Tuesday morning, so we won't be having class that day. On this accelerated schedule, we really can't afford to miss a full day of work, so we'll go ahead with the scheduled assignments. In lieu of an in-class quiz Tuesday, I'll give you an online quiz. We'll go over more details when we meet in class Monday. AMS

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Clarification on Douglass readings

Your assignment should not have included p. 924. Also, the second part of your Douglass reading should be 988-991. I apologize for any confusion these errors may have caused you.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Assignments for Monday, July 19, 2010

It occurs to me that in class today I never mentioned your reading assignment for Monday, but it's still exactly what's listed in the tentative schedule:
  • Longfellow, 643-52
  • Poe, 711-24.
And, of course, your analytical paper is due at the beginning of class Monday.

Monday, July 5, 2010

Significant events in U.S. history to 1700

You are responsible for knowing what these events were, the dates they occurred, and why they are historically significant.
  • Christopher Columbus lands in Hispaniola, 1492
  • DeSoto discovers Mississippi River, 1542
  • United Kingdom founded with coronation of James I, 1603
  • First permanent English settlement founded at Jamestown, Virginia,1607
  • Mayflower arrives at present-day Massachusetts, 1620
  • New York City founded as New Amsterdam, 1625
  • New College (Harvard College) founded, 1636
  • UK governed as Commonwealth, 1649-60
  • British Capture New Amsterdam in second Anglo-Dutch War,1664
  • Salem witch trials held in Massachusetts, 1692
You'll be tested on these events on your quiz Wednesday. You will also be responsible for knowing these and all applicable events for the corresponding unit test and for the final exam.


Monday-Thursday, 9:50 a.m. - noon, MC-126
Instructor: Milton Stanley, M.F.A.W., M.Div. Office hours: M-Thurs. 1:00-4:00 p.m. and by appointment

Required Materials
The Norton Anthology of American Literature, Shorter Seventh Edition
The Little, Brown Handbook, Eleventh Edition
College dictionary
Paper for free writing, written responses, and quizzes

Course Description
In this course students will read and be tested over works of American fiction, poetry, and nonfiction writings. Each student will also do a variety of writing assignments. For a comprehensive list of course goals and objectives, see the ENGL 2130 Weblog.

Class Requirements
  • Do all assigned readings in time for quizzes and class discussions.
  • Always come to class ready to write about and discuss readings.
  • Participate in class discussions.
  • Complete and turn in all writing assignments on time.
  • Turn in both printed and electronic copies of out-of-class essays (please talk to me if you do not have access to word processing and printing services).
Grades in this course will be assigned according to the following scale:
  • A = 90-100
  • B = 80-89
  • C = 70-79
  • D = 60-69
  • F = 0-59
Remember that, according to academic convention, a C is an average grade. The grade of B indicates above-average work, and an A is earned only through outstanding performance. I want you to make the best grade you honestly can. I’m willing to work individually with you through the semester to help you improve your grade. I urge you also to take advantage of a wide range of services offered by Motlow State. Late-term begging, however, is a very bad idea.
Your final grade will be determined according to the following formula:
  • Unit tests (4) 40%
  • Analytical paper 10%
  • Daily quizzes & writing 30%
  • Class participation 10%
  • Final examination 10%
Writing Format and Major Error Policy
For your out-of-class paper, use a 12-point standard font. Double space your essay on plain white paper with one-inch margins. See The Little, Brown Handbook for manuscript guidelines. Please follow MLA format.

If you’re in this class, then you have already completed ENGL 1010 and 1020 or their equivalents. You’re expected, therefore, to be able to write a solid essay without any of the following errors:
  • Fused sentence (FS)
  • Dangling modifier (DM)
  • Comma splice (CS)
  • Lack of agreement between subject and verb (SVA)
  • Sentence fragment (Frag)
Each instance of one of these errors in an essay will result in a one-half letter grade penalty.

Attendance Policy
You are expected to attend classes regularly, and attendance is sometimes critical for adding to class discussions. Please remember that quizzes and in-class writing assignments will be given every day and cannot be made up.

Classroom Deportment
Please keep in mind we’re all adults here. Texting, web browsing, making or taking cell phone calls during class, and getting up to leave before class ends is simply rude and shows disrespect to your teacher, your fellow students, and yourself.

Plagiarism is copying someone else's work without giving proper credit to the author. It's cheating, and a single instance of flagrant plagiarism will cause you to fail the course if you're caught. Even inadvertent plagiarism, such as failing to cite a source, is a serious academic offense. Make sure you avoid plagiarism with everything you write. If you're not sure what plagiarism is or how to avoid it, review your Little, Brown Handbook. Use other resources as well, such as the Writing Center and the Turnitin online service. I am available to help you in person or by e-mail, provided you come to me before turning in your paper.

Assignments, helpful information, and special notices will be posted each day on the course weblog: Be sure to check the site daily for important information about the course. Please see me if regular Internet access is a problem for you.

Other Information
I accept late work only in unusual circumstances. In no circumstance will I give make-ups for daily quizzes or in-class writing assignments. Late work will be lowered at least one letter grade. I do not accept very late work (e.g., wanting to make-up all four unit exams at the end of the semester).

In most cases, in-class writing will be graded pass/fail. For the in-class average, every passing essay will be averaged as a grade of 100 and every failing essay as a 50. A missed assignment is averaged as a 0. That said, the vicissitudes of life are sometimes outside our control, so I'll cut you some slack. I will drop your three lowest quiz grades and your three lowest in-class writing grades. You’ll also be allowed to rewrite one of your unit essays for a new grade. For rewrites, I will accept only papers that have already been graded and returned.

Please see me if you need special accommodations in keeping with the Americans With Disabilities Act.

The final exam for this course will be given in accordance with the MSCC exam schedule.

Special Note on Summer Short-Burn Courses
The pace of a summer short-term course is intense and unforgiving. In this course we will study more than 500 pages (around 30 pages per day) of American literature. Falling behind for even a few days could have catastrophic consequences on your performance and grade. If you’ve signed up for this course, make sure you set aside adequate time to do the work. I want you to do well in this course, but you have to do the work to make the grade.

This syllabus hits only the high points and cannot include everything you need to know during the semester. Stay tuned for more.

A Final Note
Don't let all these dos and don'ts get you down. I want you to do as well as you can in this course, and I'll do my best to help you. But remember that you're the one in charge of your education, so take the initiative in doing the work, asking questions, and seeking help when you need it. I hope you enjoy the richness of literature we read and study this semester.

About your instructor

I'm honored to be your teacher this semester. In case you're interested, you can find out more about me here:

Curriculum vitae
Short essays
Full list of publications
Shorter list of publications

Once again, I look forward to working with you in this very brief summer term.

Thursday, July 1, 2010


This weblog is for Motlow State Community College students in Milton Stanley's ENGL 2130 class, meeting in McMinnville. Be sure to check back here daily for important course information. Please keep in touch, and may your work this semester be fruitful, rewarding, and enriching.