ENGLISH 125 - 059 & 087 College Writing - FALL 2002
ENGLISH 125 - College Writing - WINTER 2003
The Outsider in Literature, Film & Popular Culture (1967 - 1972)
Instructor: Phillip Crymble Office: 5211 Angell Hall
e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org Office Hours: M - Th - 6:00 - 7:00
· Coursepack, available at Accu-Copy
· The Essential Silver Surfer - Stan Lee & Jack Kirby*
· S.C.U.M. Manifesto - Valerie Solanas*
· Post Office - Charles Bukowski*
* Available at Shaman Drum Bookstore
20% - Pre-Draft Assignments
10% - Essay One (4-5pp)
15% - Essay Two (5-6pp)
20% - Essay Three (5-6pp)
25% - Essay Four (7-8pp)
10% - Participation & Attendance
"The Cold War Consensus Hero"
Charlton Heston as Dr. Robert Neville, "The Last Man on Earth"
All written work must be typed or word-processed (double-spaced) in black ink. Page margins should be no larger than one inch. Number your pages, staple them together and use an easy to read, 12 point font (i.e.: courier, times, bookman). The first page of all essay assignments should carry your name, course, section number and the date of submission. If you turn an essay in late, it will be docked a half letter grade per day. For instance, the first essay is due Monday September 30th for section 059, one week after the rough draft is due. If you were to turn the essay in Wednesday October 9th and I felt you deserved a B, you would end up receiving a B minus.
Did you ever stop to think about why, in recent years, we have come to develop such a peculiar and pervasive fascination with 60's and 70's culture? From film to fashion, literature, music, art, design, and everything in between, we are buying it, in more ways than one. This course is structured to allow you the time and resources necessary to engage in a meaningful exploration of this singularly unique period of American cultural history. It is crucial that we analyze the forces that influence our lives and how we live them. To simply swallow the mores and conventions of the current cultural moment without struggling to understand your own impulses and predilections, where they come from and why you embrace them, is both thoughtless and wasteful. As the Greek philosopher Socrates remarked, "an unexamined life is not worth living".
During the late 60's an alienated and often radicalized figure emerged in film and literature. This figure was an Outsider, someone who failed to fit in. The cultural and political climate of the late 60's essentially divided the American population in two. The youth, or counterculture openly questioned authority and established institutions while the establishment demanded conformity and consensus thinking. It is hardly surprising, then, that on both sides of the cultural divide, people would come to feel alienated. The Outsider appears in films, literature, and social documents that champion both the counter and consensus cultures of the day. And in just about every case, the Outsider figure embarks on a mythic quest, in keeping with, but at the same time, complicating many of the cultural myths that lie at the heart of Western Civilization and the founding of America.
It is this radical Outsider figure that we will use as a means to explore the more general and specific concerns central to the highly volatile and socially explosive culture of the late 60's and early 70's.
"The Counter Culture Cold War Hero"
Vanishing Point's "Kowalski" on the run from the cops
ESSAY & PRE-DRAFT ASSIGNMENTS:
This course has been carefully designed to allow for cumulative learning. As we progress through each week's focus of study, you will see how the readings build into and out of one another. Gradually, you will become more expert both on the period in question, and more importantly, as a writer.
You are required to write four essays in this course, and each essay will grow out of weekly, pre-draft assignments devised to get you thinking and writing. So by the time it comes to creating a first draft of the essay itself, rather than being intimidated, you will have the luxury of drawing on the experience you have accumulated.
Each paper you write will be increasingly more challenging to you as a writer. However, as you will be producing 1-2 page assignments each week and working on essay drafts and proposals well before the polished draft is due, you will find that the process of writing and re-writing comes more and more naturally to you. So don't worry, by the time it comes to finishing your final essay, you will have the skills and confidence to get it done!
Each of you will be assigned a workshop group at the beginning of the semester. As there are 18 students, there will be six groups of three. Most of the small group workshopping will be done outside of class on the major essay assignments, though once each week your group will meet in class to workshop pre-draft assignments.
When the rough draft of a major essay is due you will be responsible to bring three copies to class, one for each of the members of your group to peer edit, and one for me. I will NOT be grading or editing your rough drafts, but I do want to see that you are progressing satisfactorily.
As a peer editor, you are responsible for evaluating and critically responding to the writing in the rough drafts you have been given to analyze. Write a one page critique, in the form of a letter, for each of the essays. At the following class meeting, you will be expected to return the rough drafts to the writers in your group with a copy of your letter attached. Also make certain to turn in a copy of your letter to me.
During the course of the semester you will have the opportunity to workshop the rough draft of one of your essays before the entire class. A Sign-Up sheet will be passed out. Make sure to bring 19 copies of your rough draft to class the day before your scheduled workshop. During the workshop, the members of your peer group will have the responsibility of leading the discussion.
The workshop system is designed specifically to encourage your development as a writer and editor. As the course progresses, you will become more and more proficient at analyzing both your own work and the work of your peers. Awkward syntax, faulty grammar, errors in logic, structure and organization will come to be more obvious to you. Even concepts as nebulous as style, tone and voice will be subject to your new powers of critical inquiry.
It is crucial that a standard of etiquette be observed during workshop sessions. Try to be as objective as possible in your workshop critiques. We are here to help each other as writers. Insensitive or misplaced criticism is of no value. Speak only to the issue of intrinsic strengths and weaknesses. Criticism is never pleasant, but if thoughtful and objective, it will help you improve.
In order for you to truly benefit from the workshop experience it is imperative that you labor to make your rough draft as complete as it possibly can be at this stage. You cannot expect your peers to help you polish and refine a formless and carelessly written draft.
If you come to see me in advance concerning a legitimate absence I will be inclined to look upon it more favorably. Only an official doctor's note or religious holiday counts as a legitimate excuse. Two unexcused absences amount to a full week's worth of class time. If you should have more than this, your grade will be affected. Six absences or more will seriously jeopardize your chances of being awarded a passing grade in the course. Also, if you are habitually late for class, expect to have every two latenesses recorded as an absence. Remember, you are not only letting yourself down by cutting class, you are also letting down the other students, for they rely on your criticism to further their development as writers.
You will be given a statement outlining the University of Michigan's policy on plagiarism. Absolutely anything taken from another source - words, ideas - must be cited. Your own writing style will quickly become familiar to me, and any departure from it will most definitely peak my curiosity. You will be afforded plenty of time to write, take advantage of it. The blank page may be daunting, but not nearly as daunting as an F Grade in the class and possible expulsion from the university.
ASSIGNMENT & READING SCHEDULE
Essay Due Dates (Rough Drafts) - Sections 059 & O87 respectively
Essay One - Monday, September 30th / Tuesday, October 1st
Essay Two - Monday, October 21st / Tuesday October 22nd
Essay Three - Monday, November 11th / Tuesday November 12th
Essay Four - Monday, December 2nd / Tuesday December 3rd
Week Two: Comic Book Nation - '56 - '67 & '68 - '79
(Course Pack essays - Bradford W. Wright)
Week Three: The Silver Surfer Anthology - Stan Lee & Jack Kirby
Week Four: American Film and Society - "The Sixties", "The Seventies"
(Course Pack essays - Leonard Quart and Albert Auster)
Week Five: The Omega Man - 1971, directed by Boris Sagal