ENG L305 / B612: CHAUCER

FALL 2008

Dr. DAMIAN FLEMING

 

CLASS MEETING: MWF 1:30–2:20PM, LA144

OFFICE HOURS:  MW 11AM–1PM (or by appointment)

Office: LA 149 (formerly “CM”; in English Department)

CONTACT INFORMATION:   Office phone: 260-418-0192

Email: flemingd@ipfw.edu

 

COURSE  WEBSITE: http://users.ipfw.edu/flemingd/ChaucerFALL_10.html 

COURSE DESCRIPTION:

“Father of English Poetry”, or dead guy whose “drasty ryming is nat

worth a toord!” (Chaucer’s words)?  We’ll develop a sound reading

knowledge of Middle English (the language of England c. 1200–

1500), then read a bunch of Chaucer’s texts in the original

focusing primarily on the Canterbury Tales.  We’ll try to

contextualize these texts and consider their relevance today and in

the history of English literature.  No previous experience required.

 

REQUIRED BOOK:

Geoffrey Chaucer, The Canterbury Tales, Edited by Jill Mann (Penguin, 2005), ISBN: 9780140422344 

Always Always Always Always Always Always Always Always bring the text to class; it is necessary for informed discussion; failure to bring your text to class is equivalent to an absence (and you better check out the attendance policy).

 

COURSE REQUIREMENTS:

1.   Daily attendance and vigorous participation in class fueled by close reading of all assignments

2.   Memorization and recitation of the first sentence of the Canterbury Tales in addition to at least 10 other lines from Chaucer’s works

3.   Frequent quizzes testing understanding of Middle English vocabulary and syntax and reading comprehension

4.   Tale Master Project

5.   Research Paper

6.   Midterm and Final examination

 

 

 

 

Attendance policy:

This course is based in active participation; as a result, attendance in class is essential.  

 

·         3 absences: participation grade = 0%

·         4 absences = course failure

 

NOTE:

·         There are NO excused absences.

·         Excessive lateness will count as an absence.

·         Leaving class early will count as an absence.

·         Sleeping in class will count as an absence.

 

Regardless of cause, you are responsible for all work missed during absences, including changes to the class schedule announced in class.

 

Students who miss the first day of class are required to hand in a signed Syllabus Contract before Monday, Sept 30.  Failure to do so will result in a failing grade for the course. 

 

Writing Assignments:

Engrave the following on your brain:

·         I do not accept any late work

·         Grade for late work: 0%, returned without comment

    • Computer mishaps are not an acceptable excuse.

 

Give yourself plenty of time and leeway to get your work done and to deal with bumps in the road should they occur.  Pretend, at least for this class, that you are operating in the real world.

 

Failure to submit any written assignment will result in a failing grade for the course

 

Exams and Quizzes:

We will have a midterm and a final based on the text readings and material covered in class.  Both exams will contain translation work. 

 

We will also have regularly quizzes testing reading comprehension of Middle English.  Quizzes cannot be made up.

 

Recitation: 

 

Each student will MEMORIZE and RECITE two passages of Middle

English.  Everybody will memorize and recite the first 18 lines of the General Prologue on Monday, Sept 13.  If you’ve never done anything like this before, I suggest you get started as soon as possible.  For the second

memorization students select a passage from the Canterbury Tales of at least 10 lines (which must start at the start of a sentence and end at the end of a sentence), for recitation on Monday, Nov. 8.

 

Tale Master Project:

 

Each student will select one of the eligible Canterbury Tales and serve as Tale Master, creating an online introduction to the tale and its teller, as well as conducting the class for one day.

 

Grading:

Participation/recitations:                                     10%

Quizzes and translation work:                              10%

Tale Master Project:                                              20%

Research Paper:                                                   20%

Midterm and Final                                                40%

 

 


Grade Scale:


A          95–100  Outstanding Scholarship

A -        90–94

B+        87–89

B          84–86    Superior

B–        80–83

C+        77–79

C          74–76    Average

C–        70–73

D+        65–69

D          60–64    Lowest passing quality

F          below 60



 

Students with disabilities:

In accordance with University policy, if you have a documented disability, you may be eligible to request accommodations from the office of Services for Students with Disabilities (SSD). Students with disabilities are entitled to reasonable accommodations and should have equal access to learning.  If you have any questions or you believe you need accommodations, contact the SSD office, Walb Union 113, Phone/TTD: 260 - 481 - 6657 http://www.ipfw.edu/ssd/

 

Keep in mind that accommodations are not retroactive so it is best to register as soon as possible so that timely arrangements can be made.

 

For all Students:

No retroactive accommodations can be made.  If you feel that you have an issue which may affect your ability to succeed in this class, you must come see me before you’ve defaulted on the class.  Hopefully, any issue can be resolved, but no issue can be resolved after the fact. 

 

Academic honesty:

 

USING ANOTHER PERSON’S WORDS OR IDEAS WITHOUT ATTRIBUTION IS PLAGIARISM.

Plagiarism will earn you an F for the course, and possible expulsion from the University.  If you borrow an idea or quote from another author, you must cite where you found the material. If you have any questions about citing sources, please **ASK** before your turn in an assignment.  I am happy to help, or visit the Writing Center. http://www.ipfw.edu/casa/writing/)

 

Concerning Text-Messaging in Class

       Text-messaging during the class period will result in a failing grade         for the course

 

If you find you have any questions about your final grade for the course, this link may prove helpful

 

Schedule:

 

**note: This schedule is subject to change; missing class is NOT an excuse for not knowing about changes to the schedule (see above: attendance).

 

I’ve just sketched out the very beginning of the semester here.  After this, Tale Masters will be taking over for much of the time.  I’m basically planning on 2 days per tale, read in order

 

1

M

23

Intro to Class

Start memorizing GP 1-18

Get access to wiki

W

25

Intro To Chaucer and His Language

read liii-lx

F

27

The Knights Tale 860-1122

QUIZ

2

M

30

The Knights Tale 1123-1880

QUIZ

W

1

The Knights Tale 1881-2480

QUIZ

F

3

Knights Tale 2481-3108

Tale selection due

 Introduction to the Canterbury Tales

3

M

LABOR

W

8

General Prologue--assigned parts

F

10

General Prologue

4

M

13

General Prologue

Everyone recites GP 1-18

W

15

Miller's Tale

F

17

Miller's Tale

5

M

20

Reeve and Cook

W

22

Reeve and Cook

F

24

6

M

27

Tale Master due online

 

 

Other Due Dates:

 

Friday, Oct 8: Midterm Exam

Monday, Oct 25: Research Proposal Due

Monday, Nov 8: Second Recitation

Friday, Dec 3: Research Papers Due

Friday, Dec 10: Peer Evaluations Due

 

Final Exam:

 

Monday, Dec. 13, 1-3 p.m.