to the large body of writing that falls under the category of African American
literature, this course will reflect on the themes and aesthetics of this important
part of United States literature as mediated through the creative expressions
of select female African American and African diaspora writers in the U. S..
The writers on the reading list are world-renowned and have produced literature
of inestimable social and cultural value. Their words have inspired numerous
writers, songwriters, artists and thinkers in the U. S. and beyond. Our
emphasis will be on close reading of texts, small and large group discussions
of stories, poems, and drafts of essays. This course will not be primarily a
Student Learning Outcomes: 1)
to be able to identify persistent themes in African American literature; 2) to
be able to connect these themes to a larger, historical context; 3) to be able
to undertake close, analytical readings of prose, poetry and visual texts
appropriate to a 300-level course; 3) to be able to write formal analytical
papers on literary and cultural texts appropriate to a 300-level course.
Assigned texts may include: Gwendolyn
Brooks (selected poetry); Angela Davis (selected prose); bell hooks (selected
essays); Zora Neale Hurston, THEIR EYES WERE WATCHING GOD; Jamaica Kincaid,
LUCY; Audre Lorde (selected poetry); Toni Morrison, A MERCY; Sapphire, PUSH;
Anna Deveare Smith, TWILIGHT: LOS ANGELES (drama; VHS; book); Sojourner Truth, NARRATIVE
OF SOJOURNER TRUTH. Texts ordered through Revolution Books.
Assignments for this Writing Intensive class may include: 2 essays, with research component (min.
6 double-spaced pages each); response papers (semester total 8 – 10 double-spaced
pages); take-home essay final (5 to 7 double-spaced pages).