Course: English Literature

V English Literature • 2016 listing - for reference only • Grade 9 or above • Literature Sequence
* Primary Instructor
Bruce McMenomy
* Sections
[Enrolled students will be notified if teacher schedules change between course posting at the time enrollment opens and the scheduled start of classes. Please see Tuition and Fees for refund policy.]
Section 1 Instructor: Bruce McMenomy
Classes meet from September 6, 2016 to June 2, 2017
Wednesday 11:00 AM to 12:30 PM ET
Enrollment Policy: Midyear Transfer Allowed
Tuition: $500.00

* Website
Please review more extensive materials at the teacher's English Literature website.
* Description
This is an introductory survey of English literature from the earliest survivals to the twentieth century. We approach the literature historically, tracing the developments of themes, ideas, and techniques of writing, as well as looking at the long and fascinating history of the language itself.

The course is built around a very solid textbook, England in Literature, part of the "America Reads" series from Scott, Foresman. I will supplement the readings along the way with several novels and plays, and some incidental smaller items to be made available online.

The course attempts to introduce the student as well to the idea of close reading of texts: whereas Western Literature to Dante focuses on extensive reading of a wide range of material, all of it in translation, English Literature is more intensive: it looks at a smaller body of material more closely. In part this is possible because we will be examining most of the texts as they were originally written, with only the occasional minor adjustments for spelling. The Old and Middle English materials (not normally accessible to high school students without considerable specialized language study) are given here in modern translations, but beginning in the Renaissance, texts are as originally written. Throughout the course we try to mold careful and analytical readers, responding to the literature with a discerning and charitable eye.

* Meetings
This course meets once a week for discussion and review of assigned homework.
* Homework
Regular reading every week; for a reasonably strong reader, this should not require a great deal more than about an hour a day, or perhaps less. There are a few fairly short written assignments, and before-and-after unit quizzes (one covering historical background, one covering literary material), and four exams that will generally require some more concentrated review.
* Prerequisites
None
* Recommended background
This is a course that requires no formal prerequisite, but certainly no other literary material is going to prove disadvantageous. World Literature and Western Literature to Dante are both useful in providing background material in the broadest sense, but neither is required.
V Textbooks and Materials
* England in Literature (Macbeth Edition)
Helen McDonnell, John Pfordresher, Gladys Veidemanis
This text is required.
ISBN: 067329384X
Best sources: Scholars Online Bookstore
Other information: If you cannot secure the Macbeth edition, the Hamlet edition is acceptable as well - merely make sure that you also have the optional Folger version of Macbeth listed below. That accounts for the only differences between the two volumes.

This book is now out of print, as Scott, Foresman has been assimilated by Prentice-Hall. Used copies are available, and I have a few copies available myself for loan to students who cannot find them, but I will require payment for shipping and their return at the end of the year.

* Much Ado About Nothing (Folger Shakespeare Library)
William Shakespeare
This text is required.
ISBN: 0743482751
Best sources: Scholars Online Bookstore
Other information: Please use this edition only. Unannotated editions of Shakespeare usually spell disaster for student comprehension, while using different texts (which often vary substantively) will merely create confusion in class.
* Richard III (Folger Shakespeare Library)
William Shakespeare
This text is required.
ISBN: 0743482840
Best sources: Scholars Online Bookstore
Other information: Please use this edition. Other editions are not acceptable for various reasons: chief among them the fact that unannotated texts tend to be impenetrable for the younger student.
* A Tale of Two Cities (Penguin Classics)
Charles Dickens
This text is recommended; purchase and use is optional.
ISBN: 0141439602
Best sources: Scholars Online Bookstore
Other information: This or Great Expectations is required for the class. You do not need to acquire both, though you may. Any unabridged version of the novel will suffice.
* England in Literature (Hamlet Edition)
Helen McDonnell, John Pfordresher, Gladys Veidemanis
This text is recommended; purchase and use is optional.
ISBN: 0673293831
Best sources: Scholars Online Bookstore
Other information: NOTE: This is presented as an alternative if you cannot find the Macbeth edition. It is not otherwise needed. If you get this volume rather than the Macbeth edition, please ALSO secure the Folger Library Macbeth given as optional below.
* Frankenstein: Or the Modern Prometheus (Penguin Classics)
Mary Shelley
This text is recommended; purchase and use is optional.
ISBN: 0141439475
Best sources: Scholars Online Bookstore
Other information: You may use any complete text of this book you have available. You should get either this or Pride and Prejudice, though you may read both.
* Great Expectations (Penguin Classics)
Charles Dickens
This text is recommended; purchase and use is optional.
ISBN: 0141439564
Best sources: Scholars Online Bookstore
Other information: This or A Tale of Two Cities is required for the class. You need not get both, though of course you may. Any unabridged edition is sufficient.
* Macbeth (Folger Shakespeare Library)
William Shakespeare
This text is recommended; purchase and use is optional.
ISBN: 0743477103
Best sources: Scholars Online Bookstore
Other information: NOTE: Not normally required. This is offered as an alternative for those who buy the Hamlet Edition of the textbook. If you have the Macbeth Edition, it is not necessary.
* Pride and Prejudice (Penguin Classics)
Jane Austen
This text is recommended; purchase and use is optional.
ISBN: 0141439513
Best sources: Scholars Online Bookstore
Other information: This or Mary Shelley's Frankenstein is required for the class; you need not get both (though you are free to do so).


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