17 January 2012

Literature of the Great War

ENG373/HST395 20th Century Fiction
Mead Spring 2012
January
18 W Introduction and a really quick trip through No Man’s Land
20 F The Great War and Modern Memory, Preface & Chapter 1
23 M TGWAMM, Chapter 2
25 W TGWAMM, Chapter 3
27 F TGWAMM, Chapter 4
30 M TGWAMM, Chapter 5
February
1 W TGWAMM, Chapter 6
3 F TGWAMM, Chapter 7
6 M TGWAMM, Chapter 8
8 W TGWAMM, Chapter 9
10 F Prof off-Campus. NO CLASS
13 M Student’s Choice. Brief paper on one short story or one poem.
15 W All Quiet on the Western Front,
17 M All Quiet on the Western Front
20 M NO CLASS
22 W All Quiet on the Western Front
24 F Short Stories
27 M Short Stories
29 W Short Stories
March
2 F Poetry
5 M Poetry
7 W Poetry
9 F Return of the Soldier
12 M Return of the Soldier
14 W Return of the Soldier
16 F Catch-up Day
19 M NO CLASS
21 W NO CLASS
23 F NO CLASS
26 M Paper #2 Due. Work with one poem or story and either novel.
28 W Journey’s End
30 F Journey’s End
April
2 M Journey’s End
4 W How does genre matter?
6 F NO CLASS
9 M NO CLASS
11 W Good-bye To All That
13 F Good-bye To All That
16 M Good-bye To All That
18 W Good-bye To All That
20 F Thesis Workshop
23 M Library Day
25 W Conferences
27 F Edit Session
30 M Conferences
May
2 W 15-page research paper due. Evaluations



Class Policies

Please see my blog http://stephenxmead.blogspot.com/ for policies regarding attendance, plagiarism, process writing, and useful links.
Also, be aware that there are useful, legitimate sites that I strongly encourage you to pursue for a better understanding of the issues, events, and implications of The Great War. An excellent place to start is the PBS site: www.pbs.org/greatwar. Be sure to check out the menu sitting at the bottom of the pages for fun things like maps. The site contains good bibliographical suggestions for student who might have to write, I don’t know, a fifteen-page research paper on the subject. There is also Trenches on the Web at http://www.worldwar1.com/. This site is not exactly scholarly; it is more of the “Great War Buff” site, but it is filled with great images, songs, papers, etc. You might also want to check out http://www.firstworldwar.com/; http://www.worldwar-1.net/; http://www.worldwar1.nl/; http://www.bbc.co.uk/history/worldwars/wwone/; http://www.ww1battlefields.co.uk/; http://www.richthofen.com/ww1sum/ is worth looking at if only for the flash animated maps. All this without having to go to Wikipedia once.

Course goals and structure: Literature of the Great War is cross-listed as HST395, ENG373, and IDS301. Originally, this was to have been a team-taught class with myself and a professor in the social sciences. Due to the enrollment numbers, we were unable to offer the class as team-taught. I have therefore pruned the purely historical works and added literature relevant to the Great War. Perhaps most significantly, I have made Paul Fussell’s monumental work, The Great War and Modern Memory, central to the class. We will work through this text first, for it will become the lens through which we shall read and interpret the novels, poems, short stories, and plays to follow. The main idea, then, is to study not so much the historical events as how those events became understood in the public memory by their appearances in literature.
Needless to say, this is an unusual class and something of an experiment. The syllabus is subject to change. There are, however, some things you can count on: bring expected to speak in class every day unprompted; having read the material thoroughly before class; it being assumed that you are taking serious, cogent notes of the readings, class discussions, and out-of-class conversations about the course work. You are also expected to be familiar with first-year-level writing standards (thesis, secondary sources, research, paragraphing, works cited, methodology, etc.) At present, there are two short papers and one research paper required, but we may as a group decide to change the assignments, especially if students have creative ideas that are challenging and innovative.

Required Texts:
The Great War and Modern Memory, The Illustrated Edition. Paul Fussell. Sterling, 2009
All Quiet on the Western Front, Erich Maria Remarque. Ballentine 1982.
The Penguin Book of First World War Stories, 2007
The Penguin Book of First World War Poetry, 2006
The Return of the Soldier, Rebecca West. Broadview, 2010
Journey’s End, R.C. Sherriff. Penguin 2000.
Good-bye To All That, Robert Graves. Anchor Books, 1998.
Recommended Text:
The First World War, Hew Strachan. Penguin, 2005.

Office Hours: Old Main 312B tel. 4336
smead@stmartin.edu You may leave me a voice or electronic message, but I cannot promise to respond before the next class meeting.
TR 9:30-11:00 And By Appointment

Students with special needs must declare them as soon as possible and the instructor will make all reasonable accommodations.

Grades: A= distinguished; B= clearly above average; C= acceptable, in the middle of the pack; D= passing, with reservations. F= not acceptable.
Paper #1 20%
Paper #2 20%
Participation 20%
Research Paper 40%

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