|ENGLISH 102 PAPER TOPICS
Please read this page carefully. It discusses paper format for out-of-class essays. AN ESSAY TURNED IN ON ITS DUE DATE SHOULD ALWAYS BE YOUR BEST EFFORT, NOT SOMETHING WRITTEN AT THE LAST MINUTE OR A FIRST DRAFT. Follow the guidelines below:
Papers must be stapled in the upper left corner. I will bring a stapler to class whenever papers are due. Papers bound by paper clips or in folders of any sort will be returned to you. (A Trapper will be required for the research paper—more on this at a later time.)
Papers must be typed or computer generated. Always double-spaced, in a standard 12-point font. Papers with illegible fonts, such as Old English or Algerian, will be returned to you unread.
Don’t use title pages. Instead, contain the following heading in the upper left corner of the first page:
Due Date (like this: 10 Jan. 2016)
Your last name 2 or 3 or 4, etc.
(like this: Smith 2)
Be sure to title your essays. Paper #3 or Drama Paper is not a title. Get creative.
When it’s necessary, include a Works Cited page and don’t forget to parenthetically document your research within the text. Otherwise, you have committed plagiarism.
Please remember that I will not accept any papers when you don’t attend the workshops! So, please don’t leave them in my box , drop them off and then run out of class, or attempt to e-mail them to me. There are no exceptions to this rule!
Also remember that if you are more than FIFTEEN minutes late to class on a workshop day, you will not be allowed to participate in it. No excuses, no exceptions, no make-ups.
Please write a five-to-seven-page paper on ONE of the following topics:
Read Emily Dickinson’s “My Life Had Stood—a Loaded Gun” (544) and Adrienne Rich’s “Aunt Jennifer’s Tigers” (457). What would Dickinson think of Rich’s poem, and why?
Read Elizabeth Barrett Browning’s “How Do I Love Thee?”(792) and Wendy Cope’s “Lonely Hearts” (504). What would Browning think of Cope’s poem, and why?
Read T.S. Eliot’s “The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock” (773) and then Sylvia Plath’s “Daddy” (827). What would Eliot think of Plath’s poem, and why?
Read William Blake’s “London” (514) and then Bob Kaufman’s “No More Jazz at Alcatraz” (583). What would Blake think of Kaufman’s poem, and why?
Read Yusef Komunyakaa’s “Facing It” (683) and Shirley Geok-lin Lim’s “Riding Into California”(680). What would Komunyakaa think of Lim’s poem, and why?
With this essay, you need to trust your judgment based on your interpretations and observations of the assigned poems. Use the terms learned in class to help you. In order for this paper to be effective, you must refer to both poems and use lyrics to support your ideas. (Remember to cite line numbers, document in MLA format, and include a Works Cited page, with your papers!). PLEASE DO NOT CONSULT OUTSIDE SOURCES.
WORKSHOP AND MY DRAFT DUE: MONDAY, FEBRUARY 22
FICTION PAPER/ORAL REPORT
For the oral report, the class will be divided into groups, with four or five people each. You and your groupmates will then be asked to report on various aspects of a short story featured in your textbook (not one listed on your syllabus). These aspects are as follows:
Point of View
Symbolism and Theme (If group has five in number, then these will be split up.)
Each group members will select one aspect on which to report.
Your group will have fifteen minutes to speak. This translates into roughly four minutes per person—every member will be timed. A brief class discussion will follow each group presentation.
You will be responsible for reading each group’s chosen selection; yet, you WILL NOT BE REQUIRED to do journal entries for them.
Because oral reports have a tendency to alarm people, there is no need for you to memorize your report (unless you’re daring). Feel free to use notecards, visual aids, even Powerpoint. Under no circumstances can oral reports be made up.
*A fine group presentation demonstrates organization, so I recommend that you meet and practice outside of class, if you can. PLEASE DO NOT CONSULT OUTSIDE SOURCES. The only sources you may use are the text, your mind, and perhaps the comments of your group members.
Grades for the oral report will be determined on an individual basis.
Your fiction paper will be a typed, five-to-seven-page written account of your oral report. Please adhere to MLA format—you know the penalty, if you don’t. Cite page numbers when quoting. Don’t forget your Work Cited page. Please make copies of your paper for the workshop.
ORAL REPORT DAY: WEDNESDAY, MARCH 9
FICTION PAPER DUE AND WORKSHOP: MONDAY, MARCH 14
Shakespeare’s language tends to scare people because of its lyrical, allusive, and dated quality. Without too much offense to dear William, you and your groupmates will take a scene in Othello, any scene, and translate it into modern English, keeping the basic meaning of the dialogue.
Yes, this is difficult, but you’re up to the task. (Besides, acting’s fun.) Plays are meant to be seen as well as heard.
Again, due to unfortunate time constraints, you may need to rehearse outside of class, but I will try to give you as much time for preparation in class as I can.
You will not be graded on your acting, but instead on your translation. All group members will receive the same grade, so take this assignment seriously.
Act 1, scene 1 Monday, April 4
Act 1, remainder Wednesday, April 6
Act 2 Monday, April 11
Act 3 Wednesday, April 13
Act 4 Monday, April 25
Act 5 Wednesday, April 27
Pick a book, any book of your choice. You can choose a novel, a short story collection, a book of poetry, or a play. For this assignment, I prefer that you stay away from nonfiction, even though it is a valid literary form. The book you have chosen should be a fresh reading experience for you.
Your research paper will be based on the book-length work you have chosen. Some ideas:
Write about themes, characters, symbols in the novel or novels you have read.
Compare and contrast a novel or play with its film adaptation.
Read some genre fiction. Is it literature?
What do critics have to say about the work you have read? Do you agree with them?
Look at a collection of poetry. How does the poet use the terms we have discussed in class in his or her work?
You will have a lot of freedom with this assignment; however, you MUST DO IT, as it is a mandatory part of your final portfolio. If you don’t, you will fail the class.
Adherence to MLA format is mandatory. Again, not doing so will result in a failing grade for the portfolio or final draft.
Once you’ve finished the work, you will have a stronger direction for your paper. If you’re stumped for ideas, please ask me for help. Our library tour will help you to discover valuable sources for this paper.
The paper will be due in stages; all requirements are typed, double-spaced. First, a one-to-two-page overview of your topic will be due on WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY 17. It is called a Research Prospectus. It tells me what you plan to do for your paper and why.
Next, on MONDAY, MARCH 7, an Annotated Bibliography will be due. This is a list of sources in alphabetical order, along with a brief caption for each one of how the source is helping you with the paper. Here’s an example:
Abrams, M.H. The Mirror and the Lamp: Romantic Theory and the Critical Tradition.
London: Oxford UP, 1971. Print.
This book contains a lengthy discussion of the Samuel Taylor Coleridge’s use of imagination featured in some of his poetry.
The research paper workshop will be held on MONDAY, APRIL 18. You need to workshop a completed draft of your paper, with a proper Works Cited page. I will be coming around to groups to check for completeness of papers. If you don’t have a completed draft of the paper, you will not be allowed to participate in the workshop.
My draft of the paper will be due on WEDNESDAY, APRIL 20. Please place it into a Trapper-like folder and include copies of all secondary sources. This may seem like a nuisance to you, but it is a necessity to thwart the temptation for prospective plagiarists.
How many sources? How many pages? I’m expecting nine-to-eleven pages of text for this paper, along with six to nine relevant, reliable sources. I will get grouchy if there are less than nine pages or more than twelve pages.
No copies of print secondary sources (the book you’ve chosen is excluded from this requirement): ONE LETTER GRADE OFF THE FINAL PORTFOLIO DRAFT
No Works Cited page: AUTOMATIC F
No Source Citations: AUTOMATIC F
“Creative” forms of documentation: ONE LETTER GRADE OFF THE FINAL PORTFOLIO DRAFT
Happy reading and writing! Choose a work that interests you!