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JOHN CABOT UNIVERSITY

COURSE CODE: "EN 310"
COURSE NAME: "Selected Topics in World Literature: The Immigrant Novel"
SEMESTER & YEAR: Fall 2019
SYLLABUS

INSTRUCTOR: Lewis Samuel Klausner
EMAIL: [email protected]
HOURS: MW 1:30-2:45 PM
TOTAL NO. OF CONTACT HOURS: 45
CREDITS: 3
PREREQUISITES: Prerequisite: EN 110 with a grade of C or above
OFFICE HOURS:

COURSE DESCRIPTION:
This course is an upper-level course designed to provide a thorough investigation of a limited number of texts or of a specific central unifying theme that can be chosen either from Western or non-Western literature. The course invites students to take a closer look both at the text or theme in question and at the world out of which the focal subject developed. Through the comparative analysis of literary texts from diverse cultures, students will come to see how cultural differences can influence such elements as narrative, structure, literary style, plot conventions, point of view, or the construction of character and voice. They will also be able to see how similar literary themes may be handled with different emphases by different cultures, or how cultural biases can result in different or even completely opposite moral conclusions.
This is a reading and writing intensive course. Students in 300-level literature classes are required to produce 5-6,000 words of critical writing.
SUMMARY OF COURSE CONTENT:
The second half of the 20th Century saw a migration pattern that brought millions of people from formerly colonized countries in Asia and Africa to the colonizing nations in Europe and North America. The people who have made this journey, have made their lives in newly adopted countries in the West, have also produced  richly imaginative and deeply informative literature written from the point of view of the immigrant who can see both sides of global equations, such as the inside of the sweat shop in Dhaka  as well as the expensive London or New York shop where the sports shoes are sold. What we hope to accomplish in this course, first of all, is to appreciate each of the novelists we read as artists in their own rights, as writers who have enlarged our sense of what the novel can accomplish in terms of psychology, narrative strategy, humor, fictional language, point of view, setting and so on. But we are also interested in the way these novels can help us understand the immigrant experience in contemporary society. This course should be especially useful to anyone who is interested in international relations, migration studies, or  post-colonial studies. Of course it should also be useful to anyone who wants simply to read wonderful, funny, moving novels, and to anyone who wants to get greater insight into the immigrant communities that seem impenetrable or strange to the people of their new countries. We want to look to these immigrants as people who as immigrants might have a more informed global vision. The novels we will read will be Brick Lane by Monica Ali, The Sympathizer by Viet Thanh Nguyen, White Teeth by Zadie Smith, Netherland by Joseph O'Neill, Americanah by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie. Other novels that are recommended for this course are The Reluctant Fundamentalist by Moshin Hamid, Native Speaker by Chang Rae Lee, A Free Life by Ha Jin.
LEARNING OUTCOMES:
Students finishing this course should be 1) better readers of novels with a more informed understanding of how novels work, 2) a better understanding of immigrant experience in some of its many varieties, 3) a more global view of the world where former colonizers and the formerly colonized have very different understandings of history, the global economy, language, and the like. They should also emerge from this course as better writers, able to communicate complex ideas eloquently and efficiently.
TEXTBOOK:
NONE
REQUIRED RESERVED READING:
NONE

RECOMMENDED RESERVED READING:
NONE
GRADING POLICY
-ASSESSMENT METHODS:
AssignmentGuidelinesWeight
First paper An approximately 7-page paper on Brick Lane answering to topics and specifications explained in detail on the assignment sheet. 20%
Second Paper Second 7 page paper. 20%
Third Paper Third 7-page paper. 20%
Midterm ExamAn hour and one half long exam at approximately the midway point in the course. It will ask students to comment on passages from the novels we have read. 20%
Final examA two and one half hour exam at the end of the course that asks students to comment on passages from the novels we have read. 20%

-ASSESSMENT CRITERIA:
AWork of this quality directly addresses the question or problem raised and provides a coherent argument displaying an extensive knowledge of relevant information or content. This type of work demonstrates the ability to critically evaluate concepts and theory and has an element of novelty and originality. There is clear evidence of a significant amount of reading beyond that required for the course.
BThis is highly competent level of performance and directly addresses the question or problem raised.There is a demonstration of some ability to critically evaluatetheory and concepts and relate them to practice. Discussions reflect the student’s own arguments and are not simply a repetition of standard lecture andreference material. The work does not suffer from any major errors or omissions and provides evidence of reading beyond the required assignments.
CThis is an acceptable level of performance and provides answers that are clear but limited, reflecting the information offered in the lectures and reference readings.
DThis level of performances demonstrates that the student lacks a coherent grasp of the material.Important information is omitted and irrelevant points included.In effect, the student has barely done enough to persuade the instructor that s/he should not fail.
FThis work fails to show any knowledge or understanding of the issues raised in the question. Most of the material in the answer is irrelevant.

-ATTENDANCE REQUIREMENTS:
This is a reading and writing intensive course. Students in 300-level literature classes are required to produce 5-6,000 words of critical writing.This course is an upper-level course designed to provide a thorough investigation of a limited number of texts or of a specific central unifying theme that can be chosen either from Western or non-Western literature. The course invites students to take a closer look both at the text or theme in question and at the world out of which the focal subject developed. Through the comparative analysis of literary texts from diverse cultures, students will come to see how cultural differences can influence such elements as narrative, structure, literary style, plot conventions, point of view, or the construction of character and voice. They will also be able to see how similar literary themes may be handled with different emphases by different cultures, or how cultural biases can result in different or even completely opposite moral conclusions.
ACADEMIC HONESTY
As stated in the university catalog, any student who commits an act of academic dishonesty will receive a failing grade on the work in which the dishonesty occurred. In addition, acts of academic dishonesty, irrespective of the weight of the assignment, may result in the student receiving a failing grade in the course. Instances of academic dishonesty will be reported to the Dean of Academic Affairs. A student who is reported twice for academic dishonesty is subject to summary dismissal from the University. In such a case, the Academic Council will then make a recommendation to the President, who will make the final decision.
STUDENTS WITH LEARNING OR OTHER DISABILITIES
John Cabot University does not discriminate on the basis of disability or handicap. Students with approved accommodations must inform their professors at the beginning of the term. Please see the website for the complete policy.

SCHEDULE

Week One

Introduction
Brick Lane

Week Two
Brick Lane

Week Three
Brick Lane
White Teeth

Week Four
White Teeth

Week Five
White Teeth
Midterm exam

Week 6
The Sympathizer

Week 7 The Sympathizer

Week 8
Netherland

Week 9 Netherland

Week 10
Americanah

Week 11
Americanah

Week 12
Americanah

Week 13
The Interpreter of Maladies

Week 14
Ther Interpreter of Maladies