ENGL 320:  Introduction to the Short Story
Spring 1999
Lyman Baker, Instructor
 
Course Schedule:
Readings, Writing Assignments, and Exams
 
Part 3 (Mid-term to Final Exam)

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10 Mar (W):  Mid-term exam.

12 Mar (F):  Have read for discussion Shirley Jackson's "The Lottery" (p. 702f), along with the biographical sketch of the author (p. 702) and her remarks on "The Morning of June 28, 1948, and 'The Lottery'" (p. 1480f).  Discussion topic:  how the story tells the reader its meaning must be figurative.  The Writing Assignment on this story (optional) is due at the beginning of class.

15 Mar (M):  Further discussion of "The Lottery":  constructing the implied past of the story.  Also in class:  setting up the situation in Borges' "The Garden of Forking Paths" (for 19 Mar).

17 Mar (W):  Further discussion of "The Lottery":  abstracting the category through which the story points outside itself to "the real world."  Read in advance Jorge Luis Borges' "The Garden of Forking Paths" (p. 170f) and the author's interview with Roberto Alifano on Borges' fascination with the idea of labyrinths (p. 1438f).

19 Mar (F):  Discussion of Borges' "The Garden of Forking Paths" (p. 170).  There is a Study Guide to this story.

22 Mar (M), 24 Mar (W), and 26 Mar (F)No class -- Spring Break.

29 Mar (M):  When we return from Spring Break, we'll continue the discussion of Borges' "The Garden of Forking Paths."  You should read the biographical sketch of Joseph Conrad (p. 343) begin your reading of Conrad's "Heart of Darkness" (which begins on p. 344)  Try to get through the middle of p. 352 (when the narrator, Marlow, leaves Belgium for the Congo, in a French steamer).  There is a detailed Study Guide to Conrad's story, in several parts, linked to each other.  If you print off a copy and take notes on it as you go, you'll be in good shape not to have to reread the entire story later when it comes time for review.

Note:  From here on out, you are expected to approach each story as set forth in the General Study Guide.

31 Mar (W):  Have read for discussion Zora Neale Hurston's stories "The Gilded Six-Bits" (p. 670f).   Read also the short bio on Hurston on p. 669.  The Writing Assignment on Borges' "The Garden of Forking Paths" or the Writing Assignment (optional) on "The Gilded Six-Bits" is due at the beginning of class.  (Do not write on both of these.  And if you plan to write on Hurston's "Sweat," coming up in the next class session, do not write on "The Gilded Six-Bits.")  Continue working your way into Conrad's "Heart of Darkness."  Shoot to get to the top of p. 358, when Marlow leaves the Outer Station for a 200-mile hike for the Middle Station.

2 Apr (F):  Have read for discussion Hurston's story "Sweat" (p. 678f) and her remarks on "What White Publishers Won't Print" (p. 1476f).  Rosalie Murphy Baum's essay "The Shape of Hurston's Fiction" (p. 1476) is insightful about how the author uses the structural device of "frames" to generate meaning.  Writing Assignment (optional) on Hurston's "Sweat" is due at the beginning of class.  (If you already wrote on "The Gilded Six-Bits," you are not eligible to write on this story.)  Continue your reading of "Heart of Darkness."  Aim to finish Chapter I (middle of p. 367), when the El Dorado Exploring Expedition arrives at the Middle Station, headed by the uncle of the manager at the Middle Station.

5 April (M):  Have read for discussion Alice Walker's "Zora Neale Hurston:  A Cautionary Tale and a Partisan View" (p. 1563f) and her story "Roselily" (p. 1337f).  The Writing Assignment (optional) on Walker's "Roselily" is due at the beginning of class.  Continue with "Heart of Darkness," up through the middle of p. 377 (from Marlow's overhearing of the conversation between the manager and his uncle, and into the trip to the Inner Station, up to the point at which the steamer is about a mile and a half from it).

7 April (W):  Have read for discussion Amy Tan's "Two Kinds" (p. 1264f) and "In the Canon, for All the Wrong Reasons" (p. 1552f).  Be sure to take in the biographical sketch on Tan (p. 1263).  Writing Assignment on Tan (optional) due at the beginning of class.  Continue with "Heart of Darkness," up through the end of Chapter II (middle of p. 386), which brings us to Marlow's initial encounter with the Russian trader (whom he nicknames "the harlequin").

9 Apr (F):  Have read for discussion Helena Marķa Viramontes' "The Moths."  Writing Assignment on Viramontes (optional) due at beginning of class.  Continue with "Heart of Darkness," up through the middle of p. 397 (the departure from the Inner Station).

12 Apr (M):  Have read for discussion Louise Erdrich's "The Red Convertible" (p. 460f), along with the biographical sketch of the author.  Writing Assignment (optional) on Erdrich due at the beginning of class.  Finish "Heart of Darkness" (which ends on p. 405).  Cap this off by reading Lionel Trilling's "The Greatness of Conrad's 'Heart of Darkness'" (p. 1559f).

14 Apr (W):  Review for discussion the following two passages in "Heart of Darkness":  (1) the conversation Marlow overhears at the Middle Station between the manager and his uncle (pp. 367-369); (2) Marlow's initial encounter with the Russian trader (last ¶ on p. 384 through the first sentence of the last ¶ on p. 390).  The Writing Assignment on "Heart of Darkness" is due at the beginning of class.  (If you did not write on Tolstoy's story, you'll need to write on Conrad's.)  Read Paula Gunn Allen's "Whirlwind Man Steals Yellow Woman" (p. 1416) and Leslie Marmon Silko's "Language and Literature from a Pueblo Indian Perspective" (p. 1544f).

16 Apr (F):  Have read for discussion Leslie Marmon Silko's "Yellow Woman" (p. 1215f).  Writing Assignment (optional) on Silko due at the beginning of class.  Read Edward Said's "The Past and the Present:  Joseph Conrad and the Fiction of Autobiography" (p. 1541f).  Review the following 3 passages of "Heart of Darkness": (1) the reflections that Marlow carries out on Kurtz before he narrates to his hearers his first encounter with Kurtz (from "Absurd..." [3rd ¶ on p. 381] through the next-to-last ¶ on p. 383); (2) Marlow's climactic encounter with Kurtz (from ¶2 on p. 394 through the long ¶ on p. 396); (3) Kurtz's end (from "The brown current ran swiftly out of the heart of darkness" [after the break on p. 397] through the first ¶ on p. 400).  Keep these 3 passages fresh for Monday.

19 Apr (M):  Review for discussion the following three passages from "Heart of Darkness," all of which deal with the theme of "civilization" and "restraint" vs barbarism and savagery:  (1) from "Going up that river..." (last ¶ on p. 369) through the first ¶ on p. 372; (2) from the last ¶ on p. 374 through the first ¶ on p. 376; (3) the beginning of Marlow's tale, on board the Nellie on the Thames downstream from London ("'And this also,' said Marlow suddenly, 'has been one o f the dark places on the earth,'" [¶3 on p. 346] through the next-to-last ¶ on p. 347). 

21 Apr (W):  Have read for discussion Chinua Achebe's "An Image of Africa:  Conrad's 'Heart of Darkness'" (p. 1411f) along with the biographical sketch of Achebe (p. 18).  Further discussion of Conrad's "Heart of Darkness."

23 Apr (F):  Have read for discussion Achebe's story "Civil Peace" (p. 19f).  Writing Assignment on Achebe (optional) due at the beginning of class.

26 Apr (M):  Have read for discussion Ursula K. LeGuin's "The Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas" (p. 889f), along with the biographical sketch of the author (p. 888) and her comments on "The Scapegoat in Omelas" (p. 1495f). Writing Assignment (optional) on LeGuin due at the beginning of class.

28 Apr (W):  Have read for discussion the biographical sketch of Raymond Carver (p. 236) and Carver's "Cathedral" (p. 237f), along with Tom Jenks' "The Origin of 'Cathedral'" (p. 1594f).  The Writing Assignment (optional) on "Cathedral" is due at the beginning of class.

30 Apr (F):  Have read for discussion Tess Gallagher's "Rain Flooding Your Campfire" (p. 555f), along with Carver's reflections "On Writing" (p. 1579f) and his recollections of "Creative Writing 101" (p. 1583f.).  The Writing Assignment (optional) on Gallagher's story is due at the beginning of class.

3 May (M):  Have read for discussion Carver's "What We Talk About When We Talk About Love" (p. 256f) along with Arthur M. Salzman's reading of this story (p. 1595f).  The Writing Assignment (optional) on "What We Talk About..." is due at the beginning of class.

5 May (W):  Have read for discussion Carver's "Errand" (p. 248f), along with his discussion of the origin of the story (p. 1588f), Olga Knipper's "Remembering Chekhov" (p. 1589f) and Henri Troyat's account of "Chekhov's Last Days" (p. 1560f).  The Writing Assignment (optional) on "Errand" is due at the beginning of class.

7 May (F):  Review.

Final Examination:  See the

This is the obligatory in-class portion of the exam, covering most of the stories we have read since the mid-term.

This covers Conrad's "Heart of Darkness" and one story by Chekhov that we have not discussed in class.  You can choose the in-class or the out-of-class alternative for doing Part Two of the Final Exam.

Students from either of L. Baker's sections of Introduction to the Short Story may attend either of the scheduled final exam sessions for the course.  Both will take place in our regular classroom, Eisenhower 224.  The times are:

Monday, 10 May, 11:50-1:40pm
and
Friday, 14 May, 11:50-1:40pm

If many students decide to attend one particular session, we may run short of desks.  In this case, those who are attending the session officially scheduled for the section in which they happen to be enrolled will have precedence in being assured a desk seat.  Should later-arriving students enrolled in that section decide to exercise this option, then students from the other section will be asked to vacate their seat, starting from the seat nearest the hall in the front row, then the second seat in that row, and so on.


     Return to the Course Home Page (English 320:  Introduction to the Short Story).

    Return to Course Schedule 1, for earlier assignments covered by the Mid-Term Exam.

    Return to Course Schedue 2, for later assignments covered by the Mid-Term Exam.


  Suggestions are welcome.  Please send your comments to lyman@ksu.edu .

   Contents copyright © 1999 by Lyman A. Baker

Permission is granted for non-commercial educational use; all other rights reserved.

  This page last updated 06 May 1999.