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ENGL 227 World Literature II

"...I love to go out in late September among the fat, overripe, icy blackberries... the ripest berries fall almost unbidden to my tongue, as words sometimes do, certain peculiar words...many-lettered, one-syllabied lumps, which I squeeze, squinch open, and splurge well int he silent, startled, icy black language..."

~American Poet Galway Kinnell

Credits                     3
Prerequisites            ENGL-121 (English Composition)
Instructor                 Patricia VanAmburg


Students read, analyze, and research diverse and significant literary texts from antiquity to the Renaissance in the context of their cultural values and historical periods and apply basic literary terms, concepts, and critical strategies while learning to appreciate the conventions of a variety of genres. This course is writing intensive.

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Major Course Goals and Objectives

Upon completion of this course the student will be able to:

1. Recognize and apply literary terms, concepts, and critical strategies in world literature.
2. Demonstrate critical and independent thinking in the interpretation of texts.
3. Demonstrate an understanding of ways the world literature reflects its intellectual, social, historical, and multicultural contexts.
4. Evaluate how global literary comparisons illuminate human experience, values, and challenges.
5. Communicate effectively an understanding of the literature and exchange ideas about literature in both whole-class discussions and small group discussions.
6. Perform basic literary research and use MLA-style documentation.
7. Understand and demonstrate the conventions of writing about literature.

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Sample Topics

I. The oral tradition
II. Issues of reading literature in translation
III. The relationship of the writers to their cultures and the writers' efforts to characterize the individuals within that culture
IV. The context for the emergence of a particular genre or style within a certain culture
V. Bridging the gap between cultures through an understanding of time, place, and circumstances, as well as universal symbols and other shared literary devices.

Through our selected readings, we’ll explore answers to the following questions:

Who are we? 
What do we want? 
How has that changed or remained the same?
How have language and narrative reflected and shaped our points of view?

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Course Format

  • This class is not self-paced.  The course material is sequential.  Readings and threaded weekly discussions follow the specific order illustrated in the class schedule.
  • A student’s physical presence on campus is required one (1) time during the semester.  See below.
  • There is a specific timeline for the completion of each assignment in this class. Consult the schedule for due dates.
  • Reports and paper topics will be assigned to coordinate with the current reading; therefore papers, discussion posts and reports up to one week late will be given a lower grade. Under ordinary circumstances, no papers, posts or reports will be accepted later than one week past the due date. It will be up to the instructor to determine extraordinary circumstances.

Required learning activities or assignments include:

  • Weekly reading assignments from the textbook.  See schedule.
  • Weekly (graded) threaded discussions.  The class does not have a specific “chat” time for which students must be present. Instead, each student is expected to check into the bulletin board weekly to respond to instructor prompts and questions that coordinate with the reading assignment.  Students are also encouraged to respond to one another in the weekly discussion. Discussions are graded and averaged for a final grade.
  • Familiarity with terms in the Reference module.
  • One (1) Research Project.  See Assignments module.
  • One Essay.  See schedule for due date.
  • A proctored Exam. If a student cannot write the essay exam at the HCC Test Center during the week specified in the schedule, it is up to that student to make arrangements for the essay to be written at a comparable facility—for example, the test center at another educational institution. 

Please note that:

  • Instructions and directions for each assignment will be found in the assignment module on the homepage.
  • The class schedule and calendar will list due dates for papers, projects, and exams.
  • This is a college level class that requires college level work.  Although each student will be held responsible for determining the amount of time required for his/her success, at least three hours of reading and discussion time are required weekly. Reports and essays require significant additional time

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Required Viewers, Plg-ins, or Players

Please Check the eLearning Homepage for this information.

Class Communications: What to Expect fromYour Instructor

  • Ordinarily, the instructor checks into the class Mon. Wed. and Fri.  Email and voice messages will usually be answered within two (2) days.
  • Face-to-face meetings are available by appointment at whatever times are mutually convenient.
  • Comments/responses for assignments and discussion forums will ordinarily be provided within one (1) week via course mail and/or grade book.

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Grading Procedures

Grades will be determined by your scores on the following learning activities:

Weekly Discussion Average
(Students must post a message to the class once a week on that week’s topics.)


Research Project

20 %

Exam taken at Test Center

20 %


20 %

  • All assignments are due on the dates shown in the class syllabus, Unit plan and calendar.
  • Weekly participation is required in this class.
  • Late discussions/assignments receive lower grades.
  • Late discussions/assignments will not be accepted after one week has elapsed from the due date.
  • Any on-campus exams must be completed during one of the dates and times provided.

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Text and Materials


The Norton Anthology of World Literature. Shorter second edition. Volume 2. New York: W. W. Norton & Company. 2009.


Any recent handbook that contains information on MLA-style documentation; an introduction to literary criticism and/or a glossary of literary terms; a college-level or unabridged dictionary.

What to Do If You Need Help

If you have questions about your course (assignments, due dates, problems completing assignments, how to submit assignment or navigate the Canvas course site, etc.), you should contact your online course instructor by email.  The HCC Help Desk cannot answer questions about specific course content.  Likewise, your instructor may not be able to help with technical problems.

Technical help in Canvas

See the orientation module for links to help with using Canvas.

Difficulty Loggin on to Canvas

If you are having difficulty logging on to Canvas and you know it is not a result of problems with your Internet Service Provider or your browser, contact:

Help Desk:
 410-772-4022 or

When leaving a message, be sure to leave your name, the course you are enrolled in, your course instructor's name, your phone number, your e-mail address, and a description of the problem.

Always see the Distance Learning Page for most recent information about CE 6 and the HCC Help Desk.


Updated 4-Jan.-13 © Howard Community College, 2000

Student Profile - Maribel