Thursday, March 24, 2011

Midterm Exam Info

You will have approximately one hour and fifteen minutes to complete this examination. Record all answers in the blue book provided, leaving a margin on the left side of the page. You will be required to answer a total of two essay questions (one question per section). You will, therefore, likely need the full class period in order to answer all questions effectively. Be sure to budget your time wisely. All of your ideas and observations should be well-explained and supported by specific reference to the text (i.e. quotation).

This test will be open book. You are allowed one sheet of handwritten original notes. Be sure all electronic devices are turned off and put away. Turn in this exam prompt along with your blue book and sheet of notes.

Friday, March 11, 2011

Paine and Jefferson

Works Discussed:
* Jefferson, from The Autobiography of Thomas Jefferson
* Paine, from Common Sense
* Hobbes, The Leviathan (handout)
* Locke, Two Treatises of Government (handout)

--Federalist Period:
* Establish National Identity
* Founding Ideas and Principles
* Role of Writing

* Historical Context and Enlightenment Ideology
* Ideas of Government, Citizenry and Rights
* Ideology vs. Reality
* Contradictions
* American Dream

* Purpose/Audience
* Diversity and National Identity
* Arguments Against Reconciliation With England
* Enlightenment Ideology

Due Next Class:
* Irving, "The Legend of Sleepy Hollow;" "Rip Van Winkle"--Selections Are In Volume B (Green Book)

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Olaudah Equiano

Works Discussed:
* Equiano, The Interesting Narrative of the Life of Olaudah Equiano

Topics Discussed:
* Slave Narrative: Similarities and Differences
* Role of Narrative: Emblem, Similarities to Franklin, Progress
* Significance of Capitalism/Entrepreneurialism
* Commodification of Humans
* View of Africa, Middle Passage, Significance of Experience in New World, Slavery
* Significance of Technology
* Enlightenment Idealism and Actual Practice
* Assesment of Equiano's "Heroism"

Due Next Class:
* Jefferson, from The Autobiography of Thomas Jefferson
* Paine, from Common Sense

Saturday, March 5, 2011

J. Hector St. John de Crevecoeur

Works Discussed:
* Creveco
eur, Letters From an American Farmer

Topics Discussed:
* Characteristics of New National Identity
* Role of "Melting Pot"
* Views on Government and Citizenship: American Republicanism
* Nature: American Pastoral
* Moral Regeneration
* Contradictions in American Life: Ideology vs. Reality
* American Dream

Due Next Class:
* Equiano, The Interesting Narrative of the Life of Oladuah Equiano
* Short Response Paper

Ben Franklin

Works Discussed:
* Franklin, The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin

Topics Discussed:
* Role of Autobiography and the Individual
* Secularization of Puritan ideas: Spiritual vs. Moral Regeneration, Spiritual vs. Communal Betterment, Protestant Ethic and Material Wealth
* Role of Enlightenment: Progress and Utility
* American Dream
* American Blueprint: Moral Perfection
* Views on Religious Pluralism and Gender
* Cultural Tension With England
* New Importance of Individual and Community

Anne Bradstreet

* Woodbridge, "Kind Reader" (John Woodbridge's Introduction to Bradstreet's The Tenth Muse--Class Handout)
* Selected Anne Bradstreet Poems:
  • "The Prologue"
  • "Contemplations"
  • "The Flesh and the Spirit"
  • "The Author to Her Book"
  • "Before the Birth of One of Her Children"
  • "In Reference to Her Children"
  • "In Memory...Elizabeth Bradstreet"
  • "In Memory...Anne Bradstreet"
  • "On My Dear...Simon Bradstreet"

Topics Discussed:
* Two Voices: Mistress Bradstreet vs. Anne
* Conflicted Views: Nature, Family, Religion/God and Mortal World
* Role of Gender: Views of Womanhood, Views of Men, Bradstreet as Woman Writer