Office: East College 401 Office Hours: MWF 1:30-2:30
Tel: (245-) 1363 E-mail: Winston@dickinson.edu
This course will trace the development of American literature from its Puritan roots through to the early 19th century. We will utilize a variety of critical approaches to understand these early works. In particular, we will explore the history and culture of early America in order to read this literature in its applicable contexts.
M 01-26 Reading the syllabus; the Puritans
W 01-28 The Puritans (cont.); Anne Bradstreet (in Eberwein, ed.), “The Prologue,”
“The Author to Her Book”
Recommended Text: John Winthrop, "A Model of Christian Charity"
F 01-30 Bradstreet, “The Vanity of All Worldly Things,” “Contemplations”
M 02-02 Bradstreet, "Contemplations" (cont.), “To My Dear and Loving Husband,”
“A Letter to Her Husband,” “Upon My Dear and Loving Husband”
W 02-04 Bradstreet, “Before the Birth of One of Her Children,” “In Reference to Her Children, ” “In Memory of Elizabeth Bradstreet,” “In Memory of Anne Bradstreet”
F 02-06 Bradstreet, “Meditation: May 13, 1657,” “Upon the Burning of Our House,”
“As Weary Pilgrim”
M 02-08 Edward Taylor (in Eberwein, ed.), Gods Determinations: “The Preface,”
“Gods Selecting Love In the Decree,” “The Frowardness of the Elect in
the Work of Conversion”
W 02-10 Taylor, Gods Determinations (cont.); Occasional Poems: “Upon a Spider Catching a Fly,” “Upon a Wasp Child with Cold,” “Huswifery”
F 02-12 Taylor, “Upon Wedlock, and Death of Children,” Perparatory Meditations,
First Series: “Prologue,” “The Experience”
M 02-16 Taylor, Perparatory Meditations, First Series: “The Return,” “23. Meditation.
Cant. 4.8. My Spouse”
Paper #1 Due
W 02-18 Mary Rowlandson, A True History of the Captivity and Restoration of Mrs.
F 02-20 Rowlandson, A True History . . .
M 02-23 Rowlandson, A True History . . .
W 02-25 Ebenezer Cooke (in Eberwein, ed.), The Sot-Weed Factor
F 02-27 Benjamin Franklin, The Autobiography
M 03-01 Franklin, The Autobiography
W 03-03 Franklin, The Autobiography
F 03-05 Franklin, The Autobiography
M 03-08 Olaudah Equiano, The Life of Olaudah Equiano; or Gustavus Vassa
W 03-10 Equiano, The Life . .
F 03-12 Equiano, The Life . .
M 03-22 Susanna Rowson, Charlotte Temple
W 03-24 Rowson, Charlotte Temple
F 03-26 Rowson, Charlotte Temple
M 03-29 J. Hector St. John de CrŹvecoeur, Letters from an American Farmer
W 03-31 CrŹvecoeur, Letters from an American Farmer
F 04-02 CrŹvecoeur, Letters from an American Farmer
M 04-05 CrŹvecoeur, Letters from an American Farmer
W 04-07 CrŹvecoeur, Letters from an American Farmer
F 04-09 Philip Freneau (in Eberwein, edl.), “Ode to Fancy,” “The Vernal Ague,” “The
Vision of the Night,” “To the Memory of the Brave Americans”
M 04-12 Freneau, “A Picture of the Times,” “The Deserted Farmhouse,” “The Wild
Honey Suckle,” “The Indian Burying Ground”
W 04-14 “To an Author,” “The Vanity of Existence,” “The Hurricane”
F 04-16 Freneau, “On the Uniformity and Perfection of Nature,” “On the Universality and
Other Attributes of the God of Nature,” “On the Religion of Nature”
M 04-19 William Cullen Bryant (in Eberwein, ed.), “Inscription for the Entrance to a
Wood,” “To a Waterfowl”
Critical Research Paper Due
W 04-21 “Thanatopsis,” “Mutation,” “A Forest Hymn,” “The Hurricane”
F 04-23 Bryant, “To Cole, the Painter, Departing for Europe,” “The Poet”
M 04-26 James Fenimore Cooper, The Pioneers
W 04-28 James Fenimore Cooper, The Pioneers
F 04-30 James Fenimore Cooper, The Pioneers
M 05-03 James Fenimore Cooper, The Pioneers
W 05-05 James Fenimore Cooper, The Pioneers
F 05-07 Early American Literature in Perspective
Take-Home Final Examination: Due no later than noon, Monday, May 10.
Š Regular attendance and conscientious preparation for class are assumed. Preparation, attendance, and participation are crucial to this course and your success in it. Students who miss more than three classes in the course of the semester may expect to have their final grades lowered.
Š One short essay of approximately 1,500 words (approximately 20%)
Š One critical research essay of approximately 3,000-3,500 words (approximately 40%)
Š A take-home final examination (approximately 40%)
Students must complete all requirements of the course in order to pass. This course follows College policies regarding all matters of academic dishonesty. It is the responsibility of each student to know the policies. Please see the current Dickinson College Student Handbook and other appropriate sources.
The instructor reserves the right to adjust the syllabus as necessary.