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Instructor Class Description

Time Schedule:

Lauren M Grant
ENGL 281
Seattle Campus

Intermediate Expository Writing

Writing papers communicating information and opinion to develop accurate, competent, and effective expression.

Class description

The primary aim of this course will be to further develop the writing skills you have acquired in other university writing courses, specifically by examining how genre informs writing strategies. In order to narrow our project, we will focus our attention on the topic of Jane Austen’s novels, their modern day adaptations, and the critical and cultural writing surrounding this topic.

The recent proliferation of Austen adaptations (film, television, novels, etc.) introduces questions of genre and rhetorical choice. How do key elements of Austen’s novels transfer, or fail to do so, across genres? Does Jane Austen’s nineteenth-century audience share any characteristics with the audience members of Joe Wright’s 2005 adaptation of Pride and Prejudice? How, rhetorically speaking, do authors and directors make their attention to audience visible, in text and on film? What, for film critics, constitutes a “successful? Austen adaptation? How are Austen adaptations marketed, and what does this tell us about audience?

Student learning goals

General method of instruction

Recommended preparation

Class assignments and grading

More importantly, your writing for this course will allow you the opportunity to experiment with the various genres we examine in class. We will begin by writing a traditional, academic essay on an Austen novel, refreshing our academic writing skills. Next, you will craft your own film review of an Austen adaptation, followed by a comparative analysis of an Austen novel and your choice of Austen adaptation. Finally, students will craft a proposal for their own Austen adaptation. A great deal of freedom will be given with this final project; depending on your academic interests, your proposal could consist of a chapter-draft of a new Austen sci-fi novel, along the lines of Seth Grahame-Smith’s Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, a business budget plan for a new Austen film adaptation, or an Austen website. All formal writing assignments will be paired with a rhetorical analysis reflection piece in which you account for and defend your rhetorical choices and explain their intended effects.

Because this is a composition class, the writing requirements will be extensive - approximately 30 pages over the course of the quarter.


The information above is intended to be helpful in choosing courses. Because the instructor may further develop his/her plans for this course, its characteristics are subject to change without notice. In most cases, the official course syllabus will be distributed on the first day of class.
Last Update by Lauren M Grant
Date: 02/02/2010