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Essential Objectives

Course Syllabus

Revision Date: 19-Dec-22

Spring 2023 | ENG-1310-VM01 - Introduction to Literature

In Person Class

Standard courses meet in person at CCV centers, typically once each week for the duration of the semester.

Location: Montpelier
Credits: 3 (45 hours)
Day/Times: Thursday, 11:45A - 02:30P
Semester Dates: 01-26-2023 to 05-04-2023
Last day to drop without a grade: 02-12-2023 - Refund Policy
Last day to withdraw (W grade): 03-26-2023 - Refund Policy
This course has started, please contact the offering academic center about registration


Roger Cranse
View Faculty Credentials

Hiring Coordinator for this course: Jennifer Gundy

General Education Requirements

This section meets the following VSC General Education Requirement(s) for Catalog Year 21-22 and later:
Arts & Aesthetics
  1. Many degree programs have specific general education recommendations. In order to avoid taking unnecessary classes, please consult with additional resources like your program evaluation, your academic program catalog year page, and your academic advisor.
  2. Courses may only be used to meet one General Education Requirement.

Course Description

In this course, students read a culturally diverse selection of fiction, poetry, and drama with an emphasis on how to study literature: understanding plot and character, identifying themes and the author's point of view, and analyzing techniques in prose and verse. This course fulfills the research and writing intensive requirement. Students must complete a final research paper with a grade of C- or better in order to pass this course. Prerequisite: English Composition.

Essential Objectives

1. Describe the formal elements of the novel, short fiction, poetry, non-fiction, and drama, and what makes a particular literary piece interesting, important, or provocative.
2. Define literary elements such as theme, character, plot, imagery, setting, point of view, and symbolism.
3. Explain how writers use these elements to express ideas, emotions, and values of global and/or cultural thought in critical analysis.
4. Identify figurative uses of language such as irony, metaphor, and personification from a wide range of literary works.
5. Describe the cultural and historical context of selected works of literature and explain the impact of global and/or cultural diversity on the development of these works.
6. Discuss the contributions of selected works of literature to social change, thought, and/or well-being on an individual or collective level.
7. Write short reaction papers and analyses of a wide range of selected literary works, critically editing drafts for precision and clarity as well as correct mechanics.
8. Demonstrate information literacy skills: distinguish between and utilize both primary and secondary sources; perform library and web-based literature searches; and evaluate data and resources for credibility, reliability, and validity.
9. Demonstrate the ability to apply either APA or MLA citation styles in academic writing by parenthetically citing sources in the text and correctly compiling them in the relevant end sources page.
10. Compose, revise, and edit a final paper that includes a thesis, integrates five or more scholarly and professional sources, including primary and secondary evidence as needed, to address an academic research question and demonstrate writing proficiency by achieving a grade of C- or better.

Required Technology

More information on general computer and internet recommendations is available on the CCV IT Support page. https://support.ccv.edu/general/computer-recommendations/

Please see CCV's Digital Equity Statement (pg. 45) to learn more about CCV's commitment to supporting all students access the technology they need to successfully finish their courses.

Required Textbooks and Resources

*** This is a low cost ($50 or less) textbook or resource class ***

The last day to use a Financial Aid Advance to purchase textbooks/books is the 3rd Tuesday of the semester. See your financial aid counselor at your academic center if you have any questions.


Community College of Vermont

V23SP Introduction to Literature ENG – 1310 – VM01

Course Syllabus, Spring 2023

Instructor: Roger Cranse, roger.cranse@ccv.edu

(The instructor is fully vaccinated and boosted for COVID-19.)


Why read literature?For starters, literature is just fun, a great way to spend your leisure time.At another level, literature informs us of the lives and times of others.Weexperiencewhat these characters experience.Ourempathyfor them grows.We see our own lives more clearly.Literature also explores the big themes of people’s lives: social determinism vs. free will, coming-of-age, loyalty, betrayal, redemption, good and bad behavior, the mystery of human existence.

This is a big reading course.You must be willing to set aside four or five hours per week for close reading.We’ll read fiction, nonfiction literature, poetry, and drama.We’ll also screen films based on literature.In our close reading, we’ll pay attention to the formal elements of literature: character, setting, imagery and metaphor, voice, theme, plot, point of view (POV), and others.Nonfiction literature will be essays and memoirs.Fiction will include short stories and a novel, Richard Russo’sMohawk.The drama is Tennessee Williams’ playCat on a Hot Tin Roof.We’ll also write about literature: five shorter Writing Activities (10 points each), two online discussions (5 point each), and a final Long Paper (40 points).

Discussion, explication of the text, oral readings, and screening movies and videos will constitute our in-class activities.

Class rules

·Attendance at every class is required. If you must be absent for personal emergency or serious illness, contact me ahead of time by e-mail or in-person. More than three absences, excused or unexcused, will result in a grade of "F."If you areexperiencing cough, fever, or shortness of breath, do not come to class; your absence will not count against you.Email me and I will work with you to devise a plan to make up the missed class work.

  • Stay focused,noside conversations,stow your smartphone,andno profanityin class.See also CCV’s Student Code of Conduct Policy and Procedures.
  • We will take one or two breaks during a class session.Please do not leave the room otherwise.
  • FERPA.The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act ensures that your performance and grades are strictly confidential.I cannot share these with other students, faculty, spouses, friends, and parents.I can share these with your CCV advisor.If you sign a waiver, I can also share these with your parents or other person(s) you designate.I believe this law is a fine protection of students’ work.

Preparation for class

  • Bring your book to class!And complete all the reading and writing assignments!
  • Get athree-ring binderorfolderto put handouts in.
  • Have your pad and pencil or pen at the ready to take notes in class.


  • Keep a highlighter, pen, or pencil handy for marking significant passages in the text and/or passages that particularly please you.
  • Written homework should be typed anddoubled-spacedusing a 12-point font.
  • Please do not hesitate to e-mail me if you have any questions about the homework or course.

Organization on Canvas

·Modules.There is a module for each week of the course.Each module includes work for that week and the homework for the next week.

·Assignments.Written assignments appear here.

·Discussions.Our two online discussions will be posted here.

·Announcements.Check Announcements every week.In the event of a cancelled class, I’ll notify you through Announcements.

·Gradebook.Your grades for graded assignments will appear here.The point distribution for graded assignments is:

oWriting Activities 1 – 5, 10 points each

oOnline discussions 1 – 2, 5 points each

oLong Paper, 40 points


·Specific assignments on this syllabus are subject to change.

Week One(January 26, 11:45 am – 2:30 pm)

  • Introduction to the course, including Syllabus and Canvas
  • Readings:

oExcerpt,The Blue Starby Robert Ferro


o“Caught Napping” by Nicole Holofcener

  • Introduction to James Baldwin
  • Homework for February 2
    • Read “Sonny’s Blues” by James Baldwin (handout)
    • Writing Activity 1

Week Two(February 2)

  • Discussion of “Sonny’s Blues”
  • Screen Baldwin-Buckley Debate, 1965
  • Introduction to Kristen Roupenian
  • Readings:
    • “My Dungeon Shook” by James Baldwin
    • “A Hanging” by George Orwell
    • Poetry
  • Homework for February 9
    • Participate in Discussion 1

oRead “Cat Person” by Kristen Roupenian (handout)

Week Three(February 9)

  • Discussion of “Cat Person”
  • Introduction to Tim O’Brien
  • Readings:
    • “Boyfriend” by Junot Diaz
    • “Looper” by Roger Cranse
    • Poetry
  • Homework for February 16
    • Writing Activity 2
    • Read:
      • “The Things They Carried” by Tim O’Brien (handout)

Week Four(February 16)

·Discussion of “The Things They Carried”


oExcerpt fromDispatchesby Michael Herr

o“Baguettes and the Forever War” by Roger Cranse


·Homework for February 23

oWriting Activity 3

Week Five(February 23)

·ScreenA Room with a View

·Homework for March 2

    • Read pages 3 – 96 in Richard Russo’sMohawk

Week Six(March 2)

  • Discussion ofMohawk
  • Readings:
    • Poetry of Sharon Olds
    • “Marrakech” by George Orwell

·Homework for March 4

    • Read pages 97 – 230 in Richard Russo’sMohawk

Week Seven(March 9)

  • Discussion ofMohawk
  • Readings:
    • Poetry of Sharon Olds
    • “A Modest Proposal” by Jonathan Swift
  • Homework for March 16
    • Read pages 233 – 318 in Richard Russo’sMohawk
    • Participate in Discussion 2

Week Eight(March 16)

  • Discussion ofMohawk
  • Readings/Listening:
    • “Roy Spivey” by Miranda Joy
  • Homework for March 23
    • Read pages 319 – 418 in Richard Russo’sMohawk

Week Nine(March 23)

  • Discussion ofMohawk
  • Readings:
    • “Education of a Knife” by Atul Gawande
    • “Los Angeles Notebook” by Joan Didion
  • Homework for March 30
    • Writing Activity 4

Week Ten(March 30)

·Introduction to the Long Paper


o“Buried Homeland” by Aharon Appelfeld


·J. S. Bach birthday, March 31, 1685 – screen video

  • Homework for April 6
    • First draft of Long Paper due April 6

Week Eleven(April 6)

  • ScreenPride and Prejudice
  • Homework for April 13
    • Continue work on long paper
    • Writing Activity 5

Week Twelve(April 13)

·Flipped session – revise your long paper

·Introduction to Tennessee Williams


oTennessee Williams’Cat on a Hot Tin Roof


·Homework for April 20

oFinal long paper due April 20

Week Thirteen(April 20)


oTennessee Williams’Cat on a Hot Tin Roof


  • Homework for April 27
    • TBD

Week Fourteen(April 27)

  • Readings and discussion,Cat on a Hot Tin Roof
  • ScreenCat on a Hot Tin Roof
  • Homework for May 4
    • May 4 is theiron deadlinefor all class work.

Week Fifteen(May 4) – Final class

  • ScreenCat on a Hot Tin Roof
  • Final discussion and farewells!

Grading Criteria

CCV Letter Grades as outlined in the Evaluation System Policy are assigned according to the following chart:

A Less than 9893
A-Less than 9390
B+Less than 9088
B Less than 8883
B-Less than 8380
C+Less than 8078
C Less than 7873
C-Less than 7370
D+Less than 7068
D Less than 6863
D-Less than 6360
FLess than 60 
NPLess than 600

Attendance Policy

Regular attendance and participation in classes are essential for success in and are completion requirements for courses at CCV. A student's failure to meet attendance requirements as specified in course descriptions will normally result in a non-satisfactory grade.

  • In general, missing more than 20% of a course due to absences, lateness or early departures may jeopardize a student's ability to earn a satisfactory final grade.
  • Attending an on-ground or synchronous course means a student appeared in the live classroom for at least a meaningful portion of a given class meeting. Attending an online course means a student posted a discussion forum response, completed a quiz or attempted some other academically required activity. Simply viewing a course item or module does not count as attendance.
  • Meeting the minimum attendance requirement for a course does not mean a student has satisfied the academic requirements for participation, which require students to go above and beyond simply attending a portion of the class. Faculty members will individually determine what constitutes participation in each course they teach and explain in their course descriptions how participation factors into a student's final grade.

Accessibility Services for Students with Disabilities:

CCV strives to mitigate barriers to course access for students with documented disabilities. To request accommodations, please
  1. Provide disability documentation to the Accessibility Coordinator at your academic center. https://ccv.edu/discover-resources/students-with-disabilities/
  2. Request an appointment to meet with accessibility coordinator to discuss your request and create an accommodation plan.
  3. Once created, students will share the accommodation plan with faculty. Please note, faculty cannot make disability accommodations outside of this process.

Academic Integrity

CCV has a commitment to honesty and excellence in academic work and expects the same from all students. Academic dishonesty, or cheating, can occur whenever you present -as your own work- something that you did not do. You can also be guilty of cheating if you help someone else cheat. Being unaware of what constitutes academic dishonesty (such as knowing what plagiarism is) does not absolve a student of the responsibility to be honest in his/her academic work. Academic dishonesty is taken very seriously and may lead to dismissal from the College.