ENG 120: Read, Read, Read: Reading Literature
Winter 2011: T, Th 3:10 pm-4:40 pm (Loop Campus)
“There is another world, and it is in this one.” ~Paul Eluard, French Surrealist poet
Instructor: Kathleen Rooney
Office Location: McGaw 115B
Office Hours: Tuesdays and Thursdays from 1:00-2:15 (and by appointment)
Cell: (617) 548.9145
You are required to purchase and bring to class the following texts:
Gwynn, R.S., editor.
Literature: A Pocket Anthology
. 4th edition. New York: Pearson/Longman, 2008.
Clark, Amy L. and Elizabeth Ellen, Kathy Fish, and Claudia Smith.
A Peculiar Feeling of Restlessness.
Brookline: Rose Metal Press, 2008.
Other Required Materials
A notebook for notes
A binder for your personal portfolio
Keep all of your written responses and drafts together in one place in chronological order. This will serve
to help you chart your progress as a reader and writer, as well as to give you a helpful resource for idea
development, revision, and the final exam.
Detective novelist Raymond Chandler says that “When a book, any sort of book, reaches a certain
intensity of artistic performance it becomes literature. That intensity may be a matter of style, situation,
character, emotional tone, or idea, or half a dozen other things. It may also be a perfection of control over
the movement of a story similar to the control a great pitcher has over the ball.” By this definition, there is
a lot of literature in the world, and in this class, we will get to read just a small portion of it. The portion
we do read, though, we will read extremely carefully.
This is because ENG 120 is a course in close-reading. In it, you will learn how to read fiction, drama, and
poetry by paying attention to their stylistic elements to determine how metaphor, images, plot, point of
view, diction, grammar, alliteration, the visual appearance of the text, relevant literary conventions, and
all other formal elements of a piece work to communicate. We will practice methods of focusing attention
on structural and stylistic details and address ourselves to the relationship between a work’s appearance,
its ideas, and the response it seeks to elicit from the reader. Overall, we will study works of literature as
deliberately structured statements reflecting choices that authors make within their historical and social
contexts even as we consider the reader herself, who interprets the works within her own historical and
The purpose of ENG 120 is to deepen your knowledge and understanding of the arts, developing in the