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Course : Intro to Reading & Writing about Literature

Course Number
Section Number
202 & 204
Spring 2019
Bea Wood Hall, 210
Days & Times
Final Exam Day/Time
Tuesday, May 07, 2019 12:00 am

General Goals:

Apply knowledge of rhetoric to written communication.

Engage in a writing process of invention, drafting, and revision.

Write thesis-based arguments with strong support and specific details.

Find, evaluate, and synthesize credible scholarly sources.

Use sources appropriately and follow a designated style guide.

Demonstrate proficient use of Standard Written English.


Specific Objectives for ENGL 1153 202 & 204:

Four Movie Responses: See also the model under Submission Format

Each movie response is one paragraph of about 300 words. You start with an overall idea that is your answer to our perennial question: What is Shakespeare teaching us about modern people? 

For the first and second movie responses, you quote three times from our play (with parenthetical act, scene, and line); for the third and fourth movie responses, you quote three times to the best of your recollection from the dialogue. 

Here is your sequence leading up to each quote: Describe the situation with specific details (avoid summary as much as possible). Be dynamically visual and auditory (what we see and hear). Then provide an insight or thought based on the quote, but the thought comes first. The quote is last. 

The insight or thought is the supporting point and ends on a colon just before the relevant quote. Think of it as a moral or lesson for all of us and express it as universally as possible.

Three Scholarly Responses: See also the model under Submission Format

Each Scholarly Response must be one paragraph of 300 words and incorporate three quotes from a scholarly article found on Moffett Library’s online databases. Please follow the model in this syllabus.

You are always answering this question: What is Shakespeare teaching us about modern people?

Without quoting from the play, describe something from the story with specific details in your own words.

For the scholarly responses, start with Academic Search Complete on the Moffett Library databases. Then click on the choose option just above the search box and add other databases. 

Final Essay: 30 percent of the semester grade

Write a six-paragraph 1800-word essay about The Tempest, informed by your responses (including for the movies).


The first paragraph is an introductory paragraph. It answers our usual prompt question: What is Shakespeare teaching us about modern people? Introduce the character or characters who illustrate the overall idea of your essay. What scenes in the play drives home your thought? What scenes from two of our movies help you make your point?

SECOND PARAGRAPH: See also the model under the tab for Submission Format

What stands out about the character(s)? Use at least three quotes from the play. Make sure a supporting point (idea/insight) anticipates the relevant quote. Finally, describe something as specifically as possible with your own words.


Start with a topic sentence relevant to your discussion and one of our movies. What moment or scenario in the film pertains to your discussion and your character? Illustrate with specific details from the movie.  Prior to the quotes, make sure you have a supporting point (idea/insight). The movie response is our model.


Start with a topic sentence. This paragraph does the same as the third paragraph only with a scene or scenes from one of our other movies. Both the third and fourth paragraph should be contributing to an overall argument that pivots from the scene or scenes in the play itself, which you addressed in paragraph two.


Start with a topic sentence. Pick the most relevant of your three scholarly sources. Explain how does it helps us better understand your character(s), including the movie scenes you discussed. Provide three quotes and use our scholarly response model. Be sure to describe something with specific details. You can adapt one of your previous scholarly responses.


Here revisit your overall idea from the introduction. Tease out something you mentioned in paragraph three or four—something you described from a movie. Go into depth in light of something your scholarly source said or implied in paragraph five.





JAN 15 17

Tuesday     Dr. Fields reviews syllabus. Christopher Plummer movie.  

Thursday   Christopher Plummer movie

Act 1 scene 1

Gonzalo takes comfort in the boatswain’s arrogance based on a proverb: A man born to hang will not drown.

Act 1 scene 2

Miranda’s heart breaks for the sinking ship.

Caliban curses Miranda for teaching him words.

He accuses Prospero of stealing the island from him.

Miranda defends Prince Ferdinand from her father’s unexpected wrath.

Act 2 scene 1

Gonzalo sees the island as new hope for human bliss. 

Antonio tempts Sebastian to murder his brother, King Alonso.

Act 2 scene 2

Caliban chooses the drunken Stephano to be his new god.

JAN 22 24

Tuesday     Christopher Plummer movie

Thursday    Christopher Plummer movie

Act 3 scene 1

Ferdinand expresses his love for Miranda who seems to resist him.

Act 3 scene 2

Caliban enlists his new god, the drunken Stephano, to kill Prospero. Caliban describes the magic and wonder of the island, including its invisible voices.

Act 3 scene 3

Ariel masquerades as a hideous harpy and accuses King Alonso, Antonio, and Sebastian of terrible crimes. 

Jan 29 31

Tuesday    Christopher Plummer movie

Thursday   Christopher Plummer movie

Act 4 scene 1

Prospero restores Prince Ferdinand to favor and treats him and Miranda to an aerial pageant of Ceres, Juno, and Iris, which Prospero interrupts to deal with Caliban’s conspiracy.

Act 5 scene 1 and epilogue.

Prospero renounces his powers and sets Ariel free.

Prospero forgives his enemies.

Feb 5 7

Tuesday     Movie response 1 due. Presentation of movie responses.

Thursday    Helen Mirren movie.

February 12 14

Tuesday     Helen Mirren movie

Thursday    Helen Mirren movie. 

Feb 19 21 

Tuesday     Helen Mirren movie.

Thursday    Movie Response 2 due. Presentation of movie responses. 

Feb 26 28

Tuesday     Faculty Partners in Moffett lobby computer classroom.

Thursday    Faculty Partners in Moffett lobby computer classroom. 

Mar 5 7

Tuesday     Faculty Partners in Moffett lobby computer classroom.

Thursday    Faculty Partners in Moffett lobby computer classroom.

Mar 12 14

Tuesday     Scholarly Response 1 due. Forbidden Planet.

Thurs          Forbidden Planet.  

Spring Break 

NOTE: March 25 is the last day for a penalty-free “W.” 

March 26 28

Tuesday     Forbidden Planet.

Thursday    Forbidden Planet.

April 2 4

Tuesday     Movie Response 3 due. Presentations of movie responses.

Thursday   Mazursky movie 

April 9 11        

For scholarly responses, work must be hole-punched and fixed in the clasps of a normal folder with printouts of the relevant scholarly sources in the pockets (each complete and highlighted for relevant quotes). 

Tuesday     Scholarly Response 2 due.

Thursday    Mazursky movie. 

April 16     

Tuesday     Mazursky movie. 

April 18 Thursday– Holiday Break. 

April 23 25

Tuesday     Scholarly Response 3 due. Mazursky movie.

Thursday   Mazursky movie. 

April 30 May 2

Tuesday     Mazursky movie.

Thursday    Movie response 4 is due. Presentations.


May 7 Tuesday             The Final Essay for the 9:30 class is due at 8:00 AM.

May 9 Thursday           The Final Essay for the 12:30 class is due at 10:30 AM.


Movie responses: 40 percent of semester grade (10 percent each).

Scholarly Responses: 30 percent of the grade (10 percent each).

Final Essay: 30 percent of the grade.

Five unexcused absences means 10 percent off the overall semester grade. Students who miss class should inform the instructor by email, even if they feel their excuse is lame. The professor will accept documentation in the form of cellphone pictures of clinic sign-in sheets, court dates, prescription labels, repair receipts, and work schedules; he will accept emails from family members, lawyers, and supervisors. Many times students are helping family members or friends in crisis, which is legitimate. Each case is different. If students are amassing a string of absences, the professor may ask for retrospective documentation to keep the unexcused number below five.

Students must submit their work on due dates in person: not by surrogate, not under my door, not left on a desk, and not by email attachment. The late penalty is 10 points out of 100.

Students may also ask for input on a working draft by email attachment. However, the professor may not have enough time if the student sends it too close to the due date.


Note: You may not submit a paper for a grade in this class that already has been (or will be) submitted for a grade in another course, unless you obtain the explicit written permission of me and the other instructor involved in advance.

Plagiarism is the use of someone else's thoughts, words, ideas, or lines of argument in your own work without appropriate documentation (a parenthetical citation at the end and a listing in "Works Cited")-whether you use that material in a quote, paraphrase, or summary. It is a theft of intellectual property and will not be tolerated, whether intentional or not.

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