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EN167: Introduction to Literature


Fall 2015

English 167: Introduction to Literature

Instructor: Dean Karpowicz
Office: CART 281
Hours: Monday 2:00-3:00; Tuesday/Thursday 2:00-3:00; Friday by appt.
Email: karpowic@uwp.edu


Course Objectives: English 167 offers a survey of the three major areas of literature: fiction, poetry, and drama. Within each of these areas of study, students will be exposed to a variety of different authors with a view toward offering a general understanding of literary analysis. We will approach our texts from both a writer’s perspective as well as a reader’s, glimpsing authorial technique, literary terminology, and reader appreciation. We will delve our texts for meaning—social, philosophical, experimental, nonsensical. Some instruction will be given in literary schools and movements; however, this instruction will not be central to the course. Our focus will remain on a basic understanding of literary study.

Course Work: Homework will consist of several reading assignments and some short writings. However, three major exams will weigh heavily on final grades. Exams will consist of short answer questions and identifications. I strongly urge students to read the assigned material; answering the identifications is nearly impossible without doing so. I tend not to lecture straight from the text; you get bored and so do I. Therefore, attendance is crucial. No journal is required, no portfolio, no memorizing birth, death, or marriage dates. Students will note that the syllabus outlines several assigned readings; however, the class will allow adequate time to evaluate each work, and if we don’t discuss it in class it won’t be on the test.

Message Board: During the first week of class, students will register for the class message board. This message board will be used for responses to the texts that we read. Your responses should be at least a few paragraphs long, and I may ask you to comment on a specific section of the reading. Each student will be required to complete four of the six posted responses, and each  response will be worth twenty-five points. I will not ask you to cite from outside the class texts in your responses, but you will be expected to cite specifics from them.

Required Texts:
A Good Man is Hard to Find
Winesburg, Ohio
The End of the Affair
City of Glass
Death of a Salesman


Class Policies and Procedures:

  • Attendance
    • Students are allowed no more than four absences.
    • Students missing more than nine classes should not expect to pass the class.
    • Students texting or sleeping in class will be marked absent.
    • University events/team functions/games are excused, with written documentation

    Late Work and Make-up Work

    • Late posts will not be accepted. Threads are locked at Midnight. No exceptions.
    • Exams cannot be made up unless there is a documented emergency.

    The Writing and Tutoring Center

    • I recommend that students make use of the tutoring services at Parkside. Information on making appointments and the policies can be found here.


    • Any student found guilty of plagiarism will receive a zero for the theme, and plagiarism can result in a zero for the course. You may view the English Department policy here.

    Disability Services Statement

    It is the University’s policy to provide, on a flexible and individual basis, reasonable accommodations to students who have documented disabilities that may affect their ability to participate in course activities or to meet course requirements. Students with disabilities are encouraged to contact Disability Services for a letter of verification to provide to their instructors. Disability Services is located in WYLL D175 and can be reached at 595-2372 or kirby@uwp.edu

Grading Breakdown

60% Exam Grades (20% each exam)
25% Homework Grades (Assignments and Posts)
15% Attendance & Participation

****The Final exam will NOT be cumulative


English Department

Writing Goal Students will become writers who know how to employ a wide range of strategies as they write and to use different writing process elements appropriately to communicate with different audiences for a variety of purposes.


Students will:

  • craft written responses to texts that put the writer’s ideas in conversation with those in a text in ways that are appropriate to the discipline of English, or other appropriate contexts;
  • create multiple kinds of texts to extend and synthesize their thinking (including, but not limited to, analytical essays,  poems, scripts, brochures, short stories, graphic narratives); write texts for various audiences and purposes that are informed by research (e.g., to support ideas or positions, to illustrate alternative perspectives, to provide additional contexts);
  • craft writing as a process of motivated inquiry, engaging other writers’ ideas as they explore and develop their own;
  •  demonstrate an ability to revise for content and edit for grammatical and stylistic clarity;
  • demonstrate an ability to use the correct citation methods for the appropriate context;
  • demonstrate an ability to use the appropriate technology to communicate ideas;
  • demonstrate an ability to understand language, including its complexities, nuances, ambiguities, connotations and denotations, and be able to express that understanding, with increasing sophistication, as is appropriate for the level and context of the course;


Critical Reading and Analysis Goal Students will become accomplished, active readers who appreciate ambiguity and complexity, and who can demonstrate a wide range of strategies for understanding texts, including interpretations with an awareness of, attentiveness to, and curiosity toward other perspectives.




Students will:

  • read and engage with texts from different genres (including poetry, prose, plays, screen plays, graphic novels, film), styles, and historical periods;
  • read a wide range of texts from many periods in many genres to build an understanding of the many dimensions (e.g., philosophical, ethical, aesthetic, linguistic) of human experience;
  • apply a wide range of strategies to comprehend, interpret, evaluate, and appreciate texts. These strategies may include, but are not limited to: drawing on their prior experience, their interactions with other readers and writers, reflection, intertextuality, their knowledge of word meaning and of other texts, their word identification strategies, and their understanding of textual features (e.g., sound-letter correspondence, sentence structure, syntax, context, graphics, images);
  • demonstrate an ability to read and understand texts from multiple points of view (e.g. sympathetic to a writer’s position and critical of it) and in ways that are appropriate to the academic discipline or other contexts where the texts are being used;
  • develop their capacity to evaluate the aesthetic and ethical values of texts—and will be able to articulate the standards behind their judgments;
  • demonstrate an ability to critically read texts drawn from the full diversity of literary periods and genres and written by authors representing the full range of social, ethnic, and national origins that have contributed to the corpus of literature in English;
  • demonstrate an ability to read, with depth, critical texts, expository prose and other types of writings frequently not used in the curriculum of the major; for example, writing by fellow students;


History and Theory Goal Students will develop a comprehensive knowledge of the variety of texts in diverse time periods and in diverse locations, as well as know something of the critical and historical principles behind the construction of literary, linguistic, and cultural histories, in order to demonstrate an active participation in scholarship.


Students will:

  • learn the terminology of literary and/or cultural periods in order to be active participants in a variety of literary and/or cultural fields;
  • have an awareness of controversies concerning the establishment of distinctions between periods, and an understanding of the general significances attached to various views taken of the transitions and differences between periods;
  • develop an ability to read texts in relation to their historical and cultural contexts, in order to gain a richer understanding of both text and context, and to become more aware of themselves as situated historically and culturally;


Collaborative Learning Goal Students will learn that the ability to communicate their ideas to a larger audience is as important as having the ideas themselves, and that sharing and coordinating ideas sustains and develops the larger intellectual sphere, of which they are a part. Students will understand the connection between collaborative learning and their intended professional field(s), including but not limited to their future professional roles and responsibilities.


Students will:

  • develop and demonstrate an ability to use technology to work collaboratively;


Course Outline

Class Schedule


Week 1
2: Introduction to the course
HW: Read “A Good Man is Hard to Find“; “The River
Reading Question: Mark where you think you know what is going to happen and articulate why.

4: Plot; Good Man is Hard to Find; Discuss “A Good Man is Hard to Find” & “The River”
HW: Read “The Life You Save May be Your Own
Reading Exercise:
1. Whose point of view are we in?
2. Why does it matter?
3. Note any shifts and try to explain why O’Connor makes them.

Week 2
7: Labor Day!!

9:  Introduce Point of View; “The Life You Save may Be Your Own.”
HW: Read “A Stroke of Good Fortune” (Starts on 65)

11: Point of View; Discuss “A Stroke of Good Fortune”
HW: “Good Country People”; Write Response 1
**Those who still haven’t found a book can find the stories here

Week 3
14: Finish Discussion of Point of View; Introduce Character; Discuss “Good Country People”
HW: Read “The Artificial Nigger”;

16: Setting; Good Man is Hard to Find; Discuss “The Artificial Nigger”
HW: Read Winesburg, Ohio: 1-25 (Through “The Philosopher”)
Reading Exercise:
1. Where and how does Anderson define the term grotesque?
2. How is it significant in each of the stories that you read?

18: Literary Convention: The Grotesque; Winesburg, Ohio; Group work
HW: Write Response 2

Week 4
21: Winesburg cont.
HW: Read “Godliness”;

23: Winesburg, cont.
HW: Read “Adventure,” “Respectability,” “Strength of God”

25: Winesburg, cont.
HW: Read “Death,” “Sophistication,” “Departure,” “Strength of God,” “Teacher”
Consider Winesburg: Novel or Collection?

Week 5
28: Finish Winesburg Discussion
HW: Study for Exam 1

30: Exam 1
HW: Read The End of the Affair


2: Literary Movements. An Introduction to Modernism
HW: Read The End of the Affair

Week 6
5: The End of the Affair

7: Discuss The End of the Affair
HW: Read The End of the Affair

9: Discuss The End of the Affair
HW: Read The End of the Affair

HW: Write Response 3

Week 7
12:  Finish The End of the Affair

14: Introduction to Postmodernism
HW: Read City of Glass

16: City of Glass
HW: Read City of Glass; HW: Write Response 4

Week 8
19: City of Glass

21: City of Glass
HW: Finish City of Glass

23: City of Glass
HW: Study for Exam 2

Week 9
26: Exam 2

28: Introduction to Poetry
HW: Read Poetry Packet

30: Poetry: Form and Language 1
HW: Read Poetry Packet


Week 10
2: Poetry: Form and Language 2
HW: Read Poetry Packet

4: Poetry: Speaker
HW: Read Poetry Packet

6: Poetry: Tone 1
HW: Write Response 5

Week 11
9: Poetry: Tone 2

11: Poetry: Context and Interpretation

13: Introduction to Drama; Form: Tragedy
HW: Find examples of the American Dream in popular media and BRING TO CLASS for credit

Week 12
16: Death of a Salesman

18: Death of A Salesman

20: Glengarry Glen Ross
HW: Write Response 6

Week 13
23: Glengarry Glen Ross

25: Glengarry Glen Ross


Week 14
30: Drama; Comedy | The Princess Bride


2: The Princess Bride

4: The Princess Bride
HW: Study for Final!

Final for Sec. 001: Wednesday, December 9, 11:00-12:30

Final for Sec. 002: Friday, December 11, 1:00-2:30

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