The following schedule may be modified, depending upon the needs of the class.  These modifications, if any, will be minimal and will be announced several times in class, accompanied by handouts.  In the reading and assignment schedule, Literature refers to the main text, Literature:  Reading, Reacting, Writing, by Kirszner and Mandell. The reference text is Simon & Schuster's Handbook for Writers.


1st meeting                  Introduction to poetry, fiction, drama, research

Monday                      Topics of discussion:  syllabus, writing assignments and research,

July 10                       begin introduction to how to read a poem

                                    Reading to be covered in class today:  Literature, pp. 1-4;

pp. 7-12; pp. 15-19; pp. 770-774.  Marianne Moore, "Poetry," p. 767; Nikki Giovanni, "Poetry," p. 768; Archibald MacLeish, "Ars Poetica," p. 769; Thomas Lux, "The Voice You Hear when You Read Silently" (overhead); other poems from my files.

                                    Writing:  Paragraph response to reading and discussion.

                                    Handout focus:  Topics for research essay; course syllabus; topics for first 500-850 word essay


2nd meeting                How to read a poem: an introduction to evaluation

Tuesday                     Topics of discussion:  literary terms used in evaluating poems and

July 11                       short stories, interpretation and response

Reading: Literature, pp. 9-12; pp. 57-58; pp. 801-804; poems from my files; Matthew Arnold, "Dover Beach," p. 1153; Alfred, Lord Tennyson, "Ulysses," p. 1243; Robert Frost, "Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening," p. 1191; Ezra Pound, "The River-Merchant's Wife: A Letter," p. 1227; John Donne, "Batter My Heart, Three-Personed God," p. 1176; Langston Hughes, "Theme for English B," p. 1106; Langston Hughes, "Harlem," p. 918.

                                    Writing:  Choose one of the following poets and answer questions assigned on that poet--Arnold, Tennyson, Frost, or Hughes.


3rd meeting                How to read a short story:  an introduction to evaluation

Wednesday                Reading: Literature, pp. 57-58; (Short stories) Alberto Alvaro

July 12                       Ríos, "The Secret Lion," p. 59; John Updike, "A & P," p. 124.

                                    Writing:  Answer questions on one of the two short stories. 


4th meeting                 Writing about literature

Thursday                   Topics of discussion:  coming up with ideas, outlining, and

July 13                       drafting a personal-response essay.

                                    Reading:  Literature, pp. 19-40; pp. 804-821.

Looking Ahead:  Essay #1 and portfolio due Monday, July 17th. 


5th meeting                Researching, Using Library Sources

Monday                      Topics of discussion:  ideas for research essay, using library and

July 17                       online sources—We will meet in class and then go to the library for orientation.

                                    Reading:  Handbook for Writers, pp. 484-500; 507-537.

                                    Writing:  library exercise.       

Due today:  Essay #1 and portfolio.  The portfolio should contain rough drafts of the essay, outline of the essay, final draft, any responses written in class, and answers to questions over literature we have read so far.

Looking ahead:  Library exercise due tomorrow, Tues., July 18th; working bibliography for research topic (in MLA format) due Thursday, July 20th


6th meeting                Theme in literature, poetry

Tuesday                     Topic of discussion:  First thirty minutes, discussion of library

July 18                       exercise, of research topics and possible sources, of working bibliographies. Second hour and a half, theme of carpe diem (seize the day)

Reading:  Literature, pp. 3-4; p. 775; pp. 823-824; pp. 916-918; Robert Herrick, "To the Virgins to Make Much of Time," p. 847; Andrew Marvell, "To His Coy Mistress," p. 936; Edmund Waller, "Go, Lovely Rose," p. 1246; Philip Larkin, "Next Please" (online at:

 Or at ); A. E. Housman, "Loveliest of Trees, the Cherry Now" (online at:

Christopher Marlowe, "The Passionate Shepherd to His Love," p. 783; Sir Walter Raleigh, "The Nymph's Reply to the Shepherd," p. 784.

Writing:  Reading questions and comparison


7th meeting                Theme and character in literature, short story

Wednesday                Topic of discussion:  wrap up discussion of poetry and themes

July 19                       from previous class; discuss theme in short stories

Reading:  Literature, pp. 121-124; pp. 381-385; Eudora Welty, "A Worn Path," p. 422; Katherine Anne Porter, "The Jilting of Granny Weatherall," p. 727.

Writing:  answers to questions over reading

For next class meeting:  You will bring a working bibliography to class (see pp. 496-497 in Handbook for Writers).  We will discuss MLA style in class, and you will turn in at the end of class, a list of your possible sources in MLA format.


8th meeting                 Writing about Literature

Thursday                   Topics of discussion:  writing about theme and character in

July 20                       literature, first hour; second hour, writing about research topics, discussing plagiarism; using MLA format in a bibliography.

                                    Reading:  Handbook for Writers, pp. 530-537; pp. 538-546.

Due:  Working bibliography for research essay.

                                    Handout:   sample bibliography


9th meeting                 Showing What You’ve Learned

Monday                      Writing:  In-class essay comparing poems with carpe diem themes

July 24                       or discussing character development and theme in short stories.  You will have two hours to write an essay on an assigned topic.

                                    Due at the end of class:  Essay #2, final draft, and portfolio


10th meeting              Family and Point of View

Tuesday                     Topics of discussion:  first-person narrators, unreliable narrators,

July 25                       third-person narrators (omniscient narrators, limited omniscient narrators, objective narrators), themes about family

Reading: Literature, pp. 222-232.

Poems: Theodore Roethke, "My Papa's Waltz," p. 778; Robert Hayden, "Those Winter Sundays," p. 780; Linda Pastan, "Marks," p. 1224; Lucille Clifton, "My Mama moved among the days," p. 780; Seamus Heaney, "Digging," P. 780; Simon J. Ortiz, "My Father's Song," p. 781.

Short stories: Alice Walker, "Everyday Use," p. 354; Tillie Olsen, "I Stand Here Ironing," p. 202

Writing:  Questions over selected readings; comparative and analytical responses


11th meeting               Tone, Attitude, and the Ironies of War, poetry

Wednesday                Topics of discussion:  literary terms associated with Wilfred

July 26                       Owen's poetry; irony (dramatic irony, situational irony, verbal irony)

Reading:  Literature, p. 847, 849, p. 850; Wilfred Owen, "Anthem for Doomed Youth," 791; Wilfred Owen, "Dulce et Decorum Est," p. 912; Thomas Hardy, "The Man He Killed," p. 838; Amy Lowell, "Patterns," p. 839; Henry Reed, "Naming of Parts," p. 1228; Bruce Weigl, "Song of Napalm," online at:

and at;

Jim Northrup's poems, "The Duke," "Shrinking Away," "Night Walk," "Danang Dirge," "Ogichidag," "wahbegan," "time wounds all heels."  Some of these poems can be found online at  You can hear Northrup read some of his poems at:                  


Stephen Crane, "Do Not Weep, Maiden, for War is Kind," online at

            and at

Writing:  Questions on selected poems; evaluative writing responses


12th meeting              Tone, Attitude, and the Ironies of War, short story

Thursday                   Topics of discussion:  style and word choice, irony; writing

July 27                                   essay #3.

Reading:  Literature, pp. 276-282 (language); p. 82-85 (conflict);

Short story, Tim O'Brien, "The Things They Carried," p. 314.

Writing:  Questions on short story, assigned by group.


13th meeting               Other People, Other Cultures

Monday                      Reading: Literature, Jhumpa Lahiri, “The Third and Final

July 31                       Continent,” p. 148; Nadine Gordimer, “Once Upon a Time,” p. 90.

Writing:  I will assign selected questions from pp. 94 and 162 for group discussion in class.

Due: A final, word-processed copy of Essay #3 and your portfolio


14th meeting               Research:  Putting it all Together

Tuesday                     Topics of discussion:  summarizing, paraphrasing, quoting sources

August 1                     Reading:   Handbook for Writers, pp. 546-562

Writing:  Bring to class hard copies of sources for essay (or copies that can be accessed online or on computer monitor) and preliminary essay writing for peer and professional discussion.



15th meeting              Research:  Putting it all Together

Wednesday                Topics of discussion:  focusing your essay in a thesis statement, 

August 2                     creating an outline, writing and revising drafts, reviewing plagiarism, citing sources.

                                    Reading:  Handbook for Writers, pp. 501-506; pp. 540-562;

pp. 564-575.

Writing:  Bring to class hard copies of sources for essay (or copies that can be accessed online or on computer monitor) and preliminary essay writing for peer and professional discussion.


16th meeting              Drama, Shakespearean theatre

Thursday                   Topics of discussion:  characteristics of drama, focus of

August 3                     Shakespearean comedy and Elizabethan theatre

                                    Reading:  Literature, pp. 1289-1295; pp. 1298-1303; biography of Shakespeare, p. 2002; Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream,

pp. 1699-1763.  We will read sections of the play in class before viewing a production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream


17th meeting               Drama, Shakespearean theatre

Monday                      Viewing: production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream        

August 7


18th meeting               Drama, modern theatre—Focus on Samuel Beckett

Tuesday                     Topics of Discussion:  theatre of the absurd, biography of Samuel

August 8                     Beckett, and Beckett’s influence on modern theatre

                                    Reading: Literature, pp. 1295-1298;  

                                    Viewing:  a production of Endgame (can be read online at

                            or at


If we have less time than expected, we may watch a shorter play of Samuel Beckett’s.      

                                    Everything Samuel Beckett:


19th meeting              Review for final exam

Wednesday                Topics of discussion:  wrap up discussion of drama, first hour;

August 9                     second hour, review for final exam.

Due:  Research essay and portfolio (rough drafts of essay, outline, final draft, photocopies of articles used in research, library exercise completed at the beginning of the summer session, other writing prompts as assigned)


20th meeting              FINAL EXAM

August 10th




Resources:  Web sites

Š       Online Writing Lab (OWL) at Purdue University

For general writing concerns:

The link I’ve provided here is an index to pages that discuss ways to come up with ideas for essays, ways to write effectively, and ways to proofread and edit your writing.

            For help in doing research and documenting sources:


Š       Capital Community College’s Guide to Grammar and Writing:

This web site includes discussion of various grammar subjects and also provides quizzes that you can take to test what you have learned.