ENGL 670 "Harry Potter in Context"
The weekly message board will run from Saturday to Friday, to encourage you to post soon after as well as before our weekly class discussions, but I encourage you to contribute your ideas throughout the week and to check the board for others' postings. Your postings do not need to be long, but they do need to be substantive: they must be long enough to convey clearly the problem you are taking up and your point of view, connecting your comment to others' comments whenever possible. Postings will count for half (10%) of your class participation grade (20%). I will offer models of successful comments early in the semester..
Critical Writing: During the semester, you will be doing different kinds of critical writing: not only informal postings to the message board, but also more formal papers. All students will write one shorter paper (4 pages in length); undergraduates will also write a longer paper (7-8 pages in length), while graduate students will also write a longer paper with secondary sources (8-10 pages in length), an abstract of that paper, and an essay review of four articles or a book-length study about one of our authors on the syllabus. You will have a choice of two topics for Paper #1, and you will have a choice of text for Paper #2. Both papers should follow the general rules of composition and be typed or word-processed with standard double-spacing, 1-inch margins, and either 10- or 12-point typeface. Title pages and cover sheets are unnecessary. Pages should be numbered, stapled together, and spell-checked. Papers are due by the date and time on the syllabus; late papers will be penalized one grade (i.e.: A to B) for each day late. (Note: The University's Honor Code obliges you to cite the source of any idea that is not your own. Otherwise, you have plagiarized. If you do plagiarize, you will fail this course.)
You will also write four response papers (2 pp in length) in response to our readings. Response papers are designed to ready you for class discussion and to explore ideas you could develop further in your longer paper. Everyone will write a response paper for our first set of readings on school stories; for the remaining three response papers, you may choose which three novels or reading assignments you would like to discuss, being sure to choose one that is not a novel in Rowling's series and two that are. In your response paper, you should not repeat previous class discussions or provide a mere summary of the reading. Instead, your response should begin to analyze the primary and secondary reading assigned for that class session, selecting an issue or theme or question you feel to be significant. I recommend that you select a word, phrase, or short quotation from the reading to initiate your response. These responses are due the day we discuss the material.(See sample response distributed in class.) Responses will be graded on a 1-5 scale: 5=A, 4=B, 3=C, 2=D, 1=F. I do not accept late response papers.
A note on sources: a "Works Cited" page should accompany any assignment that cites books and other outside sources, and you should use the MLA method for documenting sources. When you turn in a paper, you pledge that the work is your own and that you have faithfully abided by the guidelines for documenting sources. The University's Honor Code obliges you to cite the source of any idea that is not your own. If you quote, paraphrase, or use another's ideas, you must give credit to the person whose ideas you are using. Otherwise, you have plagiarized. If you have any questions, please ask. If you do plagiarize, you will fail this course.
Online and video resources: Along with some required online reading and viewing, I will refer you to additional resources available online or on video to complement our readings and discussions. Links within the online "Schedule of Classes" will take you to related online resources. I will add and update these resources as the semester progresses; if you locate a site or page which you find valuable, please let me know, and I'll consider adding it to the existing links.
Email: I highly recommend email as a way of touching base with me about your work for the class -- a kind of virtual office hours. You can send me queries about reading or writing assignments, your thesis statement for an essay, or anything else that could be handled with a quick exchange of messages. I check my email throughout the day, but please remember that I am not perpetually online.
Conferences: I want you to succeed in this course, and I am happy to meet with you about your work and your progress. I encourage you to see me before exams or papers are due, or if you have questions about material we discuss in class. Please feel free to stop by during office hours (M, W 9:00-10:00 a.m.), or contact me by phone or email to arrange a more convenient time to meet.
Note: If you have any condition such as a physical or learning disability that will make it difficult for you to carry out the work as I have outlined it or which will require academic accommodations, please notify me in the first two days of the course.
Note: All assigned reading should be completed by the date listed.
[CP]= Class Packs [W]=Web
|August||21||The Beginning: J. K. Rowling, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone (1997, 1998) and Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (1998, 1999).|
|Sa 25||Wizard rock concert (optional but highly recommended: MPL, 5:30-7:00pm)|
|28||School Stories: Thomas Hughes, excerpts from Tom Brown's School Days (1857) [CP]; Enid Blyton, First Term at Malory Towers (1946) [CP]. Roald Dahl, excerpt from Boy [CP1] ; Pratchett, excerpt from Pyramids (1984) [CP1]; Response Paper #1 Due (2 pp)|
|September||4||Realism: Austen, Emma (1815); Doyle, The Van (1991)
Booth, from The Rhetoric of Fiction ; Recommended: Westman, “Perspective, Memory, and Moral Authority: The Legacy of Jane Austen in J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter”; Perrson,“‘The culchies have fuckin’ everythin’: Internal Exile in Roddy Doyle’s The Barrytown Trilogy” [all CP2]
|11||Fantasy (I): E. Nesbit, The Phoenix and the Carpet (1904); Clement Freud, Grimble (1968) [CP1]; Roald Dahl, James and the Giant Peach (1961); Rowling, "Let Me Tell You a Story" (2000); Rowling, "Foreword" to Families Like Us: The One Parent Families Good Book Guide (2000); and "The Not Especially Fascinating Life So Far of J. K. Rowling" (1998) [all CP1]|
Fantasy (II): C. S. Lewis, The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe (1950); Lewis, “On Stories” and “On Three Ways of Writing for Children” [CP2]; Gilead, “Magic Abjured: Closure in Children’s Fantasy Fiction” [CP1]
|25||Rowling, Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (1999). Literary Value, Readership, and Marketing (I): Philip Hensher, "Harry Potter, give me a break" (2000); Harold Bloom, "Can 35 Million Book Buyers Be Wrong? Yes" (2000); Jessy Randall, "Wizard Words: The Literary, Latin, and Lexical Origins of Harry Potter's Vocabulary" (2001); Nel, "You Say 'Jelly,' I Say 'Jell-O': Harry Potter and the Transfiguration of Language" [all CP1]|
Rowling, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (2000). Gender: Ximena Gallardo C. and C. Jason Smith, "Cinderfella: J. K. Rowling's Wily Web of Gender"; Schoefer, "Harry Potter's Girl Trouble"; Dresang, "Hermione Granger and the Heritage of Gender" [all CP1]; Pugh and Wallace, "Heteronormative Heroism and Queering the School Story in J. K. Rowling's Harry Potter Series" [CP2]; Recommended: Westman, "Specters of Thatcherism: Contemporary British Culture in J. K. Rowling's Harry Potter Series" (2002) [CP1]
|F 5||Paper #1 Due (4 pages) to my mailbox in ECS 119 by 5 p.m. M.L.A. documentation format.|
|9||Rowling, Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (2003). Literary Value, Readership, and Marketing (II): Jack Zipes, "The Phenomenon of Harry Potter, or Why All the Talk?" (2001); John Pennington, "From Elfland to Hogwarts, or the Aesthetic Trouble with Harry Potter" (2002); A.S. Byatt, "Harry Potter and the Childish Adult" (2003); Sarah Green, "Letter to the Editor" (2003); Donnelly, "Paperback Writer" (2004); Philip Nel, "Is There a Text in This Advertising Campaign?: Literature, Marketing, and Harry Potter" (2005) [all CP1]|
|16||Rowling, Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince (2005). Religious Concerns: The Onion's "Harry Potter Books Spark Rise in Satanism Among Children" (2000); "Did you know??????" (email, 2001); Kimbra Wilder Gish, "Hunting Down Harry Potter: An Exploration of Religious Concerns About Children's Literature" (2000); Nancy Churnin, "Easing Up on Harry Potter" (2005); Griesinger, "Harry Potter and the 'Deeper Magic'" (2002) [all CP1].
Rowling Speaks: J. K. Rowling's website [W]; "The Leaky Cauldron Interview with Joanne Kathleen Rowling," Parts 1-3 (2005): Part 1, Part 2, and Part 3 [W]
|23||Rowling, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows (2007).
Revisiting Earlier Themes: Horne, "Harry and the Other: Answering the Race Question in J. K. Rowling's Harry Potter" (2010) [CP2]; Pugh and Wallace, "A Postscript to 'Heteronormative Heroism and Queering the School Story in J. K. Rowling's Harry Potter Series'" (2008) [CP2]; Westman, "The Weapon We Have is Love" (2008) [CP2]; "Snape's Supposed Great Love, or, Why Book 7 Doesn't Make Snape Any Less Interesting" [CP1]
|F 26||Essay review (4-5 pp.) due to my mailbox in ECS 119 by 5 p.m. M.L.A. documentation format.|
Fan Culture: Wizard Rock, Websites, HP Cons, HPA, and the Wizarding World of Harry Potter. Special Guest: Paul DeGeorge, co-found of Harry and the Potters and the Harry Potter Alliance.
|November||5||Prospectus (1 p.) for Paper #2 due to my mailbox in ECS 119 by 5 p.m.|
|6||Stroud, The Amulet of Samarkand (2003)|
|13||Pullman, The Golden Compass (1995). Workshop for Paper #2: Thesis, Outline, and "Works Cited"|
|27||Pullman, The Subtle Knife (1997) and The Amber Spyglass (2000)
"Talking to Philip Pullman"; Gooderham, "Fantasizing It As It Is: Religious Language in Philip Pullman's Trilogy, His Dark Materials"; Gruner, "Teach the Children: Education and Knowledge in Recent Children's Fantasy" [all CP2]
|F30||Paper #2 (with abstract, for grad credit) due by 5 p.m. to my mailbox in ECS 119. M.L.A. documentation format.|
|December||4||Life After Harry: Rowling, The Casual Vacancy (2012); The Battle of Hogwarts (2011) [W]; Harry Potter and the 10 Years Later (2012) [W]. Review for final exam.|
|11||Final Exam (IDs & essay): 6:20-8:10 p.m.|