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August 29, 2003

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Laura L. Runge
Office: CPR 301J
Phone: 813-974-9496

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    LIT/WST 4386
    British and American Literature by Women

    *** This course satisfies a General Education Exit Requirement ***

    Fall 2003
    Time: Monday and Wednesday 12:00 - 1:45pm
    Room: CPR 124

      This course has been designed to meet the following objectives:

      1) EXPOSURE: for students to form and express critical opinions about the English and American traditions of literature by women;

      2) MAKE CONNECTIONS: for students to demonstrate a critical understanding about recurrent themes and issues in the literature by women; or, in other words, to understand the impact of gender on literature;

      3) QUESTION STANDARDS: for students to question notions of literary value based on timeless universals and/or historical specifics; or, in other words, to understand the impact of gender on literary criticism;

      4) UNDERSTAND DIFFERENCE: for students to become aware of and to think critically about the variety of literary responses by women who occupy differing subject positions; or, in other words, to become aware of the differences that culture, ethnicity, class, sexuality and religion have on women's writing;

      5) EXPRESSION: for students to develop original, creative and critical thought through writing

Required Texts

(All assignments must be read in full before the date of discussion.)

Virginia WoolfA Room of One's Own, HBJ

The Norton Anthology of Literature by Women, ed. by Gilbert and Gubar, Norton (Second Edition)

Electronic Media

My website: information on class, assignments and links to other important sites on literature, etc.


Day Date Class
M 8/25 Introductions
W 8/27 Woolf, A Room of One's Own
M 9/1 Labor Day -- no class
W 9/3 Woolf, A Room of One's Own cont.; Finch, "Nocturnal Reverie" (178); Cavendish, "An Excuse" (94); Behn, "Love Arm'd" (111)
M 9/8 Rowlandson, Narrative of the Captivity ... (106)
W 9/10 Burney, from "The Diary" (241)
M 9/15 Wheatley, "On Being Brought from Africa to America" (247); Truth, "Ain't I a Woman?" (370)
W 9/17 Jacobs, from "Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl" (460)
M 9/22 Bronte, C. Jane Eyre (468-784)
W 9/24 Bronte, C. Jane Eyre cont.
M 9/29 Bronte, C. Jane Eyre cont.
W 10/1 Bronte, C. Jane Eyre cont.
W 10/8 Gilman, "The Yellow Wallpaper" (1133)
M 10/13 Chopin, The Awakening (1011--1101)
W 10/15 Chopin, The Awakening (1011--1101) cont.
M 10/20 Chopin, The Awakening (1011--1101) cont.
W 10/22 Chopin, The Awakening (1011--1101) cont.
W 10/29 Woolf, "22 Hyde Park Gate" (1318-1328)
M 11/3 Hall, "Miss Ogilvy Finds Herself" (1394)
M 11/10 Hurston, "Sweat" (1490)
W 11/12 Yamamoto, "Seventeen Syllables" (1834)
POST #10
M 11/17 Angelou, from "I know why the caged bird sings" (1916)
W 11/19 Marshall, "Poets in the Kitchen" (1946)
POST #11
M 11/24 Rich, "When we dead Awaken" (1980); "Aunt Jennifer's Tigers" (1955); "Snapshots of a Daughter-in-law" (1955)
POST #12
W 11/26 TBA
M 12/1 Kingston, "No Name Woman" (2239)
W 12/3 Walker, "In Search of our Mothers' Gardens" (2315)
POST #13
M 12/8 FINAL EXAM (Tentative date)

Graded Assignments (Total of 200 points)

Regular attendance and one office meeting 11
Weekly Posts to the List-serv (13) 39
Midterm I 50
Midterm II 50
Final exam 50

This syllabus is subject to change.

** Students who anticipate the necessity of being absent from class due to the observation of a major religious observance must provide notice of the date(s) to the instructor, in writing, by the second class meeting.

Related Sites

General Sites on Women's Literature

Individual Author Sites

    Margaret Atwood

  • Margaret Atwood Information Page -- Official site on Margaret Atwood -- her works, interviews, tours. Authorized by the author herself.
  • Aphra Behn

  • Aphra Behn Page A useful site with links to many related sources on the author. Part of the Baroque Ring. Maintained by Ruth Nestvold.
  • The Aphra Behn Society Homepage Maintained by the national society and edited by Carole Meyers of Emory University. This page contains many useful links to Aphra Behn sites and to the society newsletter.
  • More Selected poems of Aphra Behn-- part of the Lesbian Poetry site, designed by Northern Impressions.
  • Elizabeth Bishop

  • Elizabeth Bishop page -- designed and maintained by Daniel Anderson in order to study and understand aspects of her work. This site is part of an ongoing scholarly project.
  • Charlotte Bronte

  • The Charlotte Bronte and Jane Eyre Site -- part of the extensive and well-organized Victorian Web, (by George P. Landow at Brown University) this site provides excellent information on the author, history, social and political backgrounds, literary criticism, texts, bibliographies, etc.
  • Elizabeth Barrett Browning

  • The Elizabeth Barrett Browning and Aurora Leigh Site -- part of the Victorian Web, this site provides excellent information on the author, histo ry, social and political backgrounds, literary criticism, bibliographies, etc.
  • Emily Dickinson

  • The Poetry of Emily Dickinson An article from 1913 by Martha Hale Shackford from Atlantic Unbound. Shackford introduces the sometimes difficult poetry of Di ckinson by explaining and comparing her various styles and moods.
  • Anne Finch

  • Anne Finch, or the Countess of Winchelsea -- -- this is part of the extensive Celebration of Women Writers Website, and it contains a picture, biography, bibliography and several poems.
  • Charlotte Perkins Gilman

  • Charlotte Perkins Gilman Biography -- a brief biography put together by Webstock community center as part of its website on social activism.
  • Maxine Hong Kingston

  • Maxine Hong Kingston Homepage -- part of the Voices from the Gaps -- Women Writers of Color project published by the University of Minnesota. This site includes biography, bibliography and links to important sites.

  • Toni Morrison

  • Toni Morrison -- The Voices from the Gaps page, featuring biography, criticism, useful bibliograpy and some links.
  • Anniina's Toni Morrison's Page A beautiful page created and maintained by Anniina Jokinen which includes some essays and links for each of the novels by Morrison. Also includes an interesting, although idiosyncratic, list of reviews apparently done by students. Note- not all links work.
  • Adrienne Rich

  • Adrienne Rich - Modern American Poetry Excellent site developed through the Celebration of Women Writers, with extensive information, critical essays, on-line interviews, essays and poems, bibliography and additional links.
  • Alice Walker

  • Alice Walker: This extensive site is part of the Voices from the Gaps: Women Writers of Color project, and it includes biography, bibliography, links to texts, criticism, interviews, etc.
  • Virginia Woolf

  • Virginia Woolf Web: This is an extensive site with biography, pictures, and chronology, connected with a Modernism Timeline and linked to literature search engines, e-texts, and sites on related writers and topics. It ain't pretty, but it contains a great deal of useful information.

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