Dr. M. Diane Krantz PS 2st Perspectives in Women's Literature
http://faculty.weber.edu/dkrantz dkrantz@weber.edu
Mo 2-4 (PM) S 91

Perspectives in Women's Literature is an introductory course in literature by women, often about women, with a writing component. We will read examples of the three important genres of imaginative literature: drama/film, fiction, and poetry, plus non-fiction that will give us a grasp of the scope of women's writings. You will learn specific strategies to analyze and interpret texts, and will be encouraged to bring your ideas and experiences to the readings and class discussions. This is not a class in which you will sit passively and take a lot of notes. I will give you tools for interpreting and important background, but the bulk of class time will be spent in group discussion.

text and supplies Requirements Syllabus

Required Text: Literature by Women: The Traditions in English Norton Anthology (Second Edition).


Teilnahmeschein only = physical and intellectual presence requirement
       * regular and active participation in the seminar including submission of the journal
       * (group) oral presentation and subsequent facilitation of seminar
Qualifizierter Leistungsnachweis = partial credit
      * regular attendance and participation including submission of the journal
      * (group) oral presentation and subsequent facilitation of seminar
      * transcript of oral presentation one week after delivery
Voller Schein
All of the above, plus final exam

Journal Assignment:
Think of this journal as a type of diary by means of which you focus your thoughts on the reading material, record references to key passages, articulate questions that the texts seem to raise, and sometimes try out answers to those questions. These will be handwritten on looseleaf, and on one side of a sheet of looseleaf or word processed if you wish. Failure to be prepared will impact your grade. You can lower it by a) failing to submit entries at the start of class on the day they are due; b) by inappropriate responses (summary rather than interpreting or critiquing; lacking enough specifics to show you read the work or c) comprising less than half a sheet for the response, not including the heading. This link provides a sample of what is acceptable or unacceptable and why. If you know you will be absent when a journal is due, you may submit it early for full credit.

This class will build on the exchange of insights and viwpoints among class members, so development of your speaking skills is central to its (and your) success. I will ask you (perhaps in groups) to give an introductory presentation of about 10-15 minutes on a writer and/or time period listed on our syllabus. Your presentation should typically serve as a point of departure for further discussion and must be accompanied by a typed handout that you distribue in the class period before your report. The handout should not exceed two pages (one sheet, front and back) and contain the following information

-title of presentation/name(s) of presenter(s)                  -a summary of your major ideas and theses

-text(s) you expect your fellow students to study              -the sources/web sites you have consulted 

This way we can all think through your report in advance and formulate helpful questions and responses. An "official" sign-up sheet for these presentations is posted on my door (and visualy integrated into the syllabus). To enhance your leaning (and, let's be honest, to kill two birds with one stone), I encourage you to build upon your oral report for your final exam. Use the class as a testing ground for your ideas!  For those of you requiring a Schein, either partial or full, you must hand in a 3-5 page transcript of your oral report the week after your presentation. You should find the links given for the material to be helpful in preparing the presentation.

Final Exam
An in-class essay question exam will allow you to show off what you have learned this semester.


Disclaimer: This is a contract between us for the work needed to pass this class. Unavoidable circumstances may necessitate adjustment of the syllabus, but I will try to adhere to it as given.

When specific titles of a reading are not given, you are responsible for all the writings (ordinarily there is only one
in your book) by that author. Also some of the material connected to the links applies to readings not connected to the works you are responsible for. In that case ignore them. Some links are to the same texts you have seen before. Reapply such texts to new readings you have done. This schedule may be modified depending on the length of our discussions. Some may be omitted.

Week 1 Week 2 Week 3 Week 4

Week 5

Week 6 Week 7 Week 8 Week 9 Week 10
Week 11 Week 12 Week 13 Week 14 Week 15

Week 1 Introduction; Short Stories
Women’s issues, outline
READING GUIDE: the short story and Yellow Wallpaper; Gilman, “The Yellow Wallpaper,” 1133-44; (In class).
Sample Journal.

Week 2 More Short Stories and the Novella
Edith Wharton, “The Other Two”;Reading guide; Divorce in 19th C England (first several paragraphs)


(Name of student(s) who will present on this author or issue.

Ursula Le Guin, “Sur,” guide questions; _______________________________________________________
Chopin, The Awakening, 1011-1057, outline
Influences on Turn of the Century Literature

Week 3
Chopin, The Awakening, 1057-1101, guide questions


Week 4
Toni Morrison, “Sula”; feminist issues outline _______________________________________________________

Week 5
Cather, “Coming, Aphrodite!” 1227-1255, thought questions; extra info;

Jane Austen “Love and Freindship,” Web page;
Margaret Atwood “Rape Fantasies,” guide questions 


Week 6 Poetry
How to read poetry, hints;
Mary Wroth “Song,” “His Flames are Joys,” “When First I”;

What it means to explicate,

Week 7
Cathy Song “Heaven”;
Plath intro 2077-2081, 2084, 2091-93, questions;

Anne Bradstreet “The Author to her Book,” “To My Dear and Loving Husband,” From Meditations Divine and Moral.


Week 8
Anne Finch “The Spleen,” Definitions of spleen, “A Nocturnal Reverie,”

Dorothy Parker “The Waltz” _______________________________________________________

Week 9
Anne Sexton “In Celebration…,”
Christina Rosetti, “Goblin Market” and “Eve,” Guide questions;

Rita Dove “Thomas and Beuhla,”
Emily Bronte “No Coward …,” “Tell Me Smiling child,” supplementary info;

Practice explication

Week 10
Dickenson pp. ; Web page Guide Questions: 1, 2


Week 11 Essays
Browning, _______________________________________________________
Phyllis Wheatley “From Africa…,” “To His Excellency,” web page
19th C essayists
Sojourner Truth “Ain’t I a Woman?” guide questions for Truth, Nightingale, Jackson

Jamaica Kincaid short essay “Girl” web page,

Week 12
Abigail Adams “Letters to John…”;
Louisa May Alcott “Little Women,” critical essay, web page;

Zora Neal Hurston “How it Feels to be Colored Me,” web page


Week 13
Nightingale, “Cassandra”; Wollstonecraft, , web page
Woolf, “A Room of …,” Web links;

Walker, “My Mother’s Garden,” Thought questions


Week 14 Reading Drama
Introduction to Drama, Drama guide, characters;
Lady Gregory; read out loud;
Glaspell, “Trifles,” Web page; _______________________________________________________
Prepartion for the final exam

Week 15
Final Exam: In class
on the last day