Seminar study of special topics in language and literary study. Limited to seniors majoring in English.
English 498N: Mapping the readerís journey. We book lovers have had our hearts stolen, been transported to a different place by at least one book. Because you can never take the same journey twice, rereading a beloved book can reveal new insights, into the reader as well as the book. In this course weíll focus on the experience of reading, exploring the difference between first readings and subsequent readings, discovering how the book is never the same and how we change as readers trekking across readings and through time. In addition to Anne Fadimanís Rereadings, a collection of essays by diverse writers on the surprises and insights rereading brings, William Faulknerís As I Lay Dying, and selections from The Book that Changed My Life by Roxanne Coady and Joy Johannessen, you will work closely with a book you choose. This is a writing-intensive course; assignments include regular reflective exercises to log your journeys, formal arguments you develop through rereading and revision, and a portfolio essay. To prepare for this class, begin thinking about some of those old loves you yearn to revisit again for a few weeks. Works of literature you read several years ago when you were in another time and place will be good candidates. And if youíve already done some writing about the books you are considering, thatís a bonus. Hopefully, rereading will leave both you and the book you revisit changed, and you, dear traveler, will have a deepened appreciation for who you are as a reader and the role reading can play in your present and future journey.
Student learning goals
know and be able to describe the skills, abilities, and investments that define you as a reader
understand the contribution of your education and major to your strengths as a reader
understand and characterize how you have evolved as a reader over time
articulate why and how reading matters to you and identify the role reading can play in your goals for the future
General method of instruction
Each student will develop an individual project supported by discussion, informal and formal writing, small group work, presentation, and a portfolio.
Class assignments and grading
Three linked essays with revision Short informal writing assignments Selected readings Individual rereading
participation 1/3 essays w/revision 2/3