Remember the Oresteia? It’s being performed at UT Arlington. I don’t know how they have adapted the three plays for a combined performance, but it looks interesting. It’s on Monday, December 6 at 7:00 p.m. in the Rosebud Theatre.

Monday, Dec. 6

The Oresteia,  a stage production by the Leonidas Loizides Theatrical Group adapted from the trilogy by Aeschylus. Received the United Nations Best Off-Broadway Theatrical Performance Award for 2010. Presented by the Hellenic Student Association and the Honors College. Reception follows. $15. 7 p.m. Rosebud Theatre, E.H. Hereford University Center. (from MavWire, Nov. 29, 2010)

Hi everyone,

For your last paper, I would like you to choose one (1) of the following short stories and write a brief analysis of it. Try to identify the story’s themes and discuss the significance and implications of the themes (i.e., what is the story about? what may it tell us about our own lives and concerns?) as well as discussing how the plot, the tone, the narration, and the characters in the story express and contribute to the theme(s). These are the stories you may choose from:

“Broken Transformers,” Bi Shumin, 318

“Distant View of a Minaret,” Alifa Rifaat, 256

“In the Family,” Maria Elena Llano, 391

“The Violin,” Ludmillla Petrushevskaya, 454

The essay will be due on August 10.

Hi everyone,

Here’s a list of the short stories we’ll be talking about during the last three days of the class. The division into days is rather arbitrary–I’m sure some of the Wednesday stories will slip over into Thursday, for instance.

I’ll give you the stories for the last essay in my next post.

Short Story Reading List

Wednesday, August 5:

“Before,” Annie Saumont, 220
“Comrades,” Nadine Gordimer, 117
“An Unfinished Record,” Zhang Jie, 122
“The Funfair,” Hanan Al Sharyk, 77
“Woman Hollering Creek,” Sandra Cisneros, 150

Thursday, August 6:

“Newlywed,” Banana Yoshimota, 195
“A Wife’s Story,” Bharati Mukerjee, 226
“Hairball,” Margaret Atwood, 260
“Two Words,” Isabel Allende, 212

Monday, August 10:

“Blue Water-man,” Luisa Valenzuela, 274
“The Burial,” Armonia Somers, 362
“Games at Twilight,” Anita Desai, 204
“A Gift from Somewhere,” Ama Aita Adoo, 395

July 23rd, 2009

For your second paper, I would like you to give your answer to the question, “What is Josef K.’s crime?”

In order to do this, of course, you will have to read The Trial very thoroughly and carefully. Much of your grade for this assignment will depend upon the evidence, primarily in the form of quotations, paraphrases, and allusions, that you present in defending your idea of what K.’s crime is.

You do not have to believe K. is guilty of a crime. If you think that he is the dupe or the innocent victim of some oppressive force, you may argue that position, but be sure to defend your opinion and give evidence for it by frequently quoting and referring to the text of the novel.

There is no “correct” answer to the question I am asking you to consider. In class we have looked at some elements of the novel that may give us some hints. For instance, the location of the law offices in the poor people’s apartments, the description of the accused whom he meets there, as men who, like Josef K., seemed to belong to the upper classes, and similar passages may suggest a political or social “crime” that K may participate in. Alternatively, the women in The Trial and the way K. treats them and tries to make use of them may suggest a different direction one could go in defining his “crime.” There are any number of other “hints” or “clues” that you may find in the novel to help you formulate and explain your position. These “clues” may be descriptions of settings, the way one of K.’s thoughts or a statements is phrased, a quirk or physical trait in a character is described, etc.

If you use any external sources–either in print or on the Internet–in your essay, please be sure to acknowledge them. Also be sure to locate the quotations from, paraphrases of,  and other references you make to The Trial itself. If you are using the Mitchell translation of The Trial, a page number would be sufficient. If you are using another edition or translation, please be sure to indicate it in your Work Cited or Bibliography page. There are a number of links to Kafka sites on the class web page.

Here are a couple of links to other very short works by Kafka that may be helpful:

Please remember to acknowledge and identify any information you derive from any of these or other sources.

Your essay should be 4-6 pages in length (though if you get to three-and-a half pages, don’t pad it to get to four). It will be due on Monday, August 3.

If you have any questions, please feel free to email me.

Links Fixed

July 16th, 2009

As a few students pointed out, two of the pages on the class web site could not be accessed without user ids and passwords because of a faulty link.

I’ve now fixed the link and you are most welcome to visit them. They may be helpful in proofreading and documenting your essays.

(Please, please, please remember not to plagiarize!!)

Hello everyone

July 9th, 2009

This is the blog for ENGL 2309:001–Sophomore World Literature–in the second summer semester of 2009: hence the rather inelegant URL of the blog.

Please feel free to post any questions or observations you may have on the readings that we are doing or the class discussions of them.

I will also use the blog to post announcements or to remind you to look at the class web site for assignments or resources.

My first announcement (if you were in class on Thursday, July 9, and got the assignment handout, you already know this) is that contrary to what the handout says, the first essay is due on Monday, July 20 (the date on the syllabus) not Monday, July 13 (as it says on the paper handout).