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English 605

Introduction to Scholarship in English Studies
Terry Oggel
Fall 2013 TTh 5:30-6:45; Hibbs 308 Office: 345 Hibbs

Office Hours: Th 3:30-4:30pm Phone: 828-1331 email:


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Required: Harner, Literary Research Guide. 5th ed. MLA, 2008.

Williams and Abbott, An Introduction to Bibliographical and Textual Studies. 4th ed. MLA, 2009.

Recommended: MLA Style Manual and Guide to Scholarly Publishing. 3rd ed. MLA, 2008.

Course Description

For Books are not absolutely dead things, but doe contain a potencie of life in them to be as active as that soule was whose progeny they are; nay they do preserve as in a voill the purest efficacie and extraction of that living intellect that bred them.

-- John Milton, Areopagitica (1644)
This course introduces students to theory, methodology, and tools for research in English studies and for assessing and establishing texts. It emphasizes techniques of conducting original research and of assessing the quality of others’ research; it stresses both analytic and synthetic aspects of research-based argumentation.  Students acquire knowledge of and expertise in using a research tools (electronic and print) and in broadening their imaginations in employing research materials and methods in the development of their own scholarship.  In the final project, students prepare a critical edition of a literary work.  Several papers are required, from 2 to 15 pages in length.
Class participation, and therefore attendance, is required. This is a seminar. The quality of the class depends on the give and take of discussion with all students involved. Missed classes must always be explained, beforehand when possible or promptly afterwards when not (please provide a note, with dates, or use e-mail). As a policy, missed work cannot be made up. Electronic submissions are not allowed.
Special features of the course will include demonstrated or mediated electronic resource searching; visit to Cabell’s book preservation department; presentation on the function of research in undergraduate composition pedagogy; and discussion with the author as part of the project in textual criticism. Details about these will be provided later.

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