West Chester University

Fall 2002

West Chester University

Spring 2002

Fall 2001





Course Information
  WRT 120 Syllabus
  Lit 165 Syllabus
  About the Instructor

Notes for Effective Writing I
  Understanding the 'Rhetorical Situation'
  Writing Descriptively
  What Makes a Good Story?
  Building a Thesis
  Notes on 'Purpose'
  Strategies for Writing Introductions
  Strategies for Writing Conclusions
  Assignment #5: Argument
  Understanding Rational Argument

Notes for Introduction to Literature
  Fundamental Questions About Literature
  Critical Approaches to Literature
  Approaching Literature
  Critical Thinking and Reading Literature
  Notes on Four Short Stories
  The Genesis of the Short Story
  Defining the Short Story
  The Art of the Short Story
  A Vocabulary for Fiction and Beyond
  Notes on Nathaniel Hawthorne
  Responding to 'The Birthmark'
  A Guided Reading of 'Bartleby the Scrivener'
  Bartleby--Questions for Analysis
  A Cultural Context for 'Bartleby the Scrivener'
  Notes on Innovative Fiction
  Study Guide for Fiction Exam
  Billy Collins - 'Introduction to Poetry'
  A Catalogue of Poems for Study
  Approaching a Definition of Poetry?
  Reading Poetry
  The Craft of Poetry: Imagery
  Readings from 'The United States of Poetry'
  The Craft of Poetry: Sound
  The Craft of Poetry: Structure
  Lines of Continuity
  Study Guide for Poetry Exam
  The Birth of Drama
  On Tragic Character
  Stepping Through 'Oedipus the King'
  Analyzing 'Oedipus the King'
  The Relevance 'Oedipus'Today
  Study Guide for the Drama Exam

Announcements and Assignments
  WRT 120 Announcements
  WRT 120 Assignments
  LIT 165 Announcements
  Lit 165 Assignments


Go Exploring
  Weblog for WRT 120
  Weblog for LIT 165
  Writing Assistance on the Web

Join an Online Forum
  WRT 120 Composition Forum
  LIT 165 Introduction to Literature Forum


~ ~ LIT 165 Syllabus ~ ~

Introduction to Literature WCU / lit165 / FALL 2002

INSTRUCTOR: Stacy Tartar Esch

OFFICE: Main 411 (During scheduled office hours, I may be at the computer in Main 417, around the corner)
OFFICE PHONE: 610-436-______
ENGLISH DEPARTMENT: (English Dept. Secretary) 610-436-2822
OFFICE HOURS: Tues/Thurs 11:00 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. and 4:45 - 5:45 p.m.

This introductory level literature class is designed to help students acquire the tools for understanding, appreciating, and critically analyzing three genres of literature: fiction, poetry, and drama. This semester you will learn some basic concepts about literary technique and innovation. You'll be expected to exercise your objective critical thinking skills as you read, analyze, and discuss a variety of stories, poems, and plays. Please note that LIT 165 is no longer a writing emphasis course and ENG 121 is no longer a prerequisite.

Meyer, Michael. The Compact Bedford Introduction to Literature: Reading o Thinking o Writing, 6th ed.

Students are expected to carefully read and analyze all assigned work prior to class, and to actively participate in all class exercises and discussions. Participation in class is a significant portion of your semester grade (see below).

Students will be expected to complete four examinations (including the final exam) as well as several quizzes, class exercises, and in-class response papers.

Fiction Exam / 20% / Early October
Poetry Exam / 20% / Early November
Drama Exam / 20% / Early December
Final Exam (cumulative) / 20% / Finals week
Preparation / 20% / throughout

Exams. Each genre-based exam will include 30-50 multiple choice, true/false, and matching items designed to gage the student's ability to recall, comprehend, and analyze literary works assigned as well as understand and apply concepts related to the literature assigned. These concepts will be drawn both from the textbook and material provided in class. I'll provide study guides before each exam. Motivated students may pursue supplemental (extra credit) writing assignments to accompany exam grades (after consulting with the instructor).

Preparation. Response papers, classwork, and homework assignments will be assigned throughout the semester to assess preparation or to jump-start discussion. Response papers may be assigned at the start of a class period (or for homework) so that (even if you hate to speak up in class) I can get your individual reaction to the works we're studying. A fairly typical kind of response paper prompt might be a question like, "What do you think you'll remember most about X three days or three years from now?" Classwork, homework, and response papers are checked but not letter-graded. Very poorly executed or missing assignments will hurt your average. If you miss class, make every effort to make up the work you missed by speaking with me and by checking the assignments page on the course website (


Attendance: Students are expected to attend every class having read the assigned material. Any student who misses more than the equivalent of two weeks of class can expect to receive a lowered grade. For instance, missing the equivalent of three weeks will lower your average one whole letter grade (B+ = C+). Missing four weeks lowers your average two whole letter grades (B+ = D+). Missing more than four weeks is automatic failure (A+ = F). Students with serious problems or medical emergencies should notify the Dean of Students, who will contact your instructors about any necessary adjustments. Please be advised that it is not always possible to make up work missed due to absence. Coming to class late: Although I'd rather you come to class late than not at all, chronic lateness to class is disruptive and unacceptable. Please have consideration for your classmates and for the instructor if you are entering the classroom late. Occasional tardiness is not a problem but if it becomes habitual, those lateness will be recorded as absences and you will run a higher risk of receiving a lowered or failing grade for the course.

Late Assignments: All work must be turned in on the due date. Late papers are penalized, and in some cases, not accepted. I encourage you to email me any assignment you failed to bring to class. If I receive it on the day it is due, I won't count it late.

Make-up Exams: Students are responsible for being in class on test days. Students may make up an exam only if special arrangements are made in advance. Late exams are penalized.

Writing Center: If you are having trouble with a writing assignment, do not hesitate to bring your problem to my attention or bring your essay to the Writing Center in Main 203. The Writing Center offers free professional tutoring to any student who is writing a paper for any course offered by the college. The staff will assist students at all stages of the writing process: developing ideas, organizing drafts, revising, and editing. Tutors will not serve as your proofreaders, however; their aim is to help you develop your own skills. You may need to call ahead for an appointment as the center becomes fairly busy once the semester is under way. (436-2121) HOURS: M-Th (10 a.m. to 6 p.m.) and F (10 a.m. to 2 p.m.). Evening hours will be added once the semester begins. Visit the Writing Center's web page for an up-to-date schedule of hours.

Office of Services for Students with Disabilities: I will make accommodations for students with disabilities. If you have a disability, please make your needs known to me and contact the Office of Services for Students with Disabilities at 436-3217. Sufficient notice is required to make such accommodations possible.

Diversity and Fair Language. You are required by University policy to use nondiscriminatory language and to treat all issues of diversity respectfully (including, but not limited to, race sex/gender, ethnicity, disability, and sexual orientation). Read Quick Access, pp.101-103.

Academic Honesty. Plagiarism of any type is a serious academic offense that can result in a failing grade on an assignment, failure of the course, or referral to academic judicial affairs, depending upon the instructor's judgment. You are plagiarizing if you (*) lift either ideas or word-for-word passages from a published book, article, or website without giving credit to the author; (*) pass off another student's work as your own; or (*) allow a "helper" to actually write parts of your paper for you. Don't do it!!!

Final Grades
I'll calculate your final grade based on your exam scores and your preparation average (each component is 20% of your final grade). Students who actively, responsibly participate in class discussions can expect a hefty boost to their preparation grade.

Your final percentage will be converted to a letter grade as follows:

93 - 100 = A 72-76 = C
89 - 92 = A- 70 - 71 = C-
87 - 88 = B+ 68 - 69 = D+
82 - 86 = B 62-67 = D
79 - 81 = B- 60-61 = D-
77 - 78 = C+ 59 - below = F


The reading schedule which appears below for each genre may change slightly during the course of the semester. Selections may be substituted or added. Any changes will be announced in class and posted online.

During the course of the semester I will either distribute or post online supplemental reading materials. Class lectures or additional handouts will also be posted online at the course website ( I encourage you to check this site regularly, in addition to reading the required material listed below.

Please note that the selections listed below are not always presented in the order we will study them. Please listen carefully in class for specific reading assignments.

The Story of an Hour (12), A Sorrowful Woman, (35), A&P (467), Eveline (400), Love in LA (236), Bartleby the Scrivener (108), Miss Brill (232), The Birthmark (306), How to Tell A True War Story (420), Popular Mechanics (248), Girl (439)

More stories may be assigned in class.

Dust of Snow (handout/web)
Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening (789)
Much Madness Is Divinest Sense- (750)
The Mother (handout/web)
Mother to Son (809)
When I Heard the Learn'd Astronomer (904)
A Simile (handout/web)
My Papa's Waltz (671)
Dulce Et Decorum Est (580)
Death of the Ball Turret Gunner (540)
next to of course god america i (643)
The Unknown Citizen (handout/web)
Richard Cory (614)
Rain (handout/web)
Those Winter Sundays (499)
L (A (514)
Catch (503)
The Panther (In the Jarden Des Plantes, Paris) (583)
The Secretary Chant (498)
One Perfect Rose (handout/web)
First Party at Ken Kesey's with Hell's Angels (715)

More poems will be assigned in class

Sophocles, Oedipus the King (969-1026)
Shakespeare's Richard III in Looking for Richard
Henrik Ibsen A Doll's House (1125-1202)
Arthur Miller, Death of a Salesman (1300-1369)

Extra Credit Options
may exist for interested students.
See the instructor for further details.







Questions? Contact me.

All materials unless otherwise indicated are copyright © 2001-2002 by Stacy Tartar Esch.
FALL 2001 site is available at BRAINSTORM-SERVICES.COM
The original contents of this site may not be reproduced, republished, reused, or retransmitted
without the express written consent of Stacy Tartar Esch.
These contents are for educational purposes only.