ENG L364/B675, Fall, 1996


Time:MWF 2:00-2:50 p.m.
Place:CM 148
Call Number:03460, 03459
Instructor: Chad Thompson
Office:CM 201
Phone:481-6775 (work), 485-1785 (home)
Office Hours:TR 10:00 - 11:00 a.m.
MW 1:00 - 2:00 p.m.
Or by appointment

Description and Objectives:

We will look at the literature of Native North American, including both traditional, oral literature, such as myths and songs, and contemporary genres of poetry, fiction, personal narrative, and oratory. We will examine the work of such authors as Louise Erdrich, N. Scott Momaday, James Welch, Luci Tapahonso, and Joy Harjo. In addition, we will look at issues relevant to the study of Native American literature, issues such as authenticity and orality vs. literacy. At the end of the class you will be able to demonstrate knowledge in the following areas through exams and interpretive essays:

  1. major themes, motifs, and stylistics of traditional and non-traditional Native American literature
  2. the cultural background behind several Native American literatures and the function that these literatures serves in their respective cultures
  3. determining the degree of authenticity of major works of Native American literature

I expect you to attend class regularly. If possible, please let me know in advance if you cannot attend a class.


Exams (3 @ 20%)60%
Final Exam20%
Term Paper20%


Term Paper:
Topic Due:October 28
Paper Due:December 13
10-15 pages (ENG L364)
15-25 pages (ENG B675)
The papers can be on any aspect of traditional or modern Native American literature. You should write your topic down and turn it in to me by October 28. I recommend that you discuss your topic with me before that date and discuss your progress with me during office hours some time after that date. Final papers are due at the beginning of class, December 13. Graduate students will make presentations of their papers in class.


18/26Intro. to Native American Lit.
8/28Traditional Cultures
8/30AuthenticityRose (on reserve)
9/4Traditional Mythology
9/6In Honor of EyakKrauss
39/9-9/11In Honor of EyakKrauss
9/13Traditional OratoryOratory (on reserve)
49/16Traditional SongSongs (on reserve)
9/18AutobiographiesVizenor 19- 57
9/20AutobiographiesVizenor 60-67, 75-93
59/23 AutobiographiesBlack Elk (on reserve)
9/25EXAM 1
9/27The Navajo
69/30-10/4Saani DahataalTapahonso
710/7Simon Ortiz, Wendy RoseVizenor 94- 102, 258-61, 270-73
10/9Gunn Allen, Marmon Silko, LuceroVizenor 158-64, 181-8, 204-5
810/14-18House Made of DawnMomaday
910/21Harjo, Hogan, TallMountainVizenor 245-6, 262-67, 279-82
10/23Southeastern writersVizenor 175-80, 189-203, 250-67
10/25EXAM 2
1010/28-11/1Love MedicineErdrich 1- 229
1111/4Love MedicineErdrich 230- 367
11/6Gerald VizenorVizenor 68-74, 142-57, 299-336
11/8Other AnishinaabeVizenor 226-42, 286- 9
1211/11Other WoodlandsVizenor 247- 9, 274-9, 268-9
11/13-15Fools CrowWelch 1- 257
1311/18-20Fools CrowWelch 258- 391
11/22McNickle and Other WelchVizenor 111-9, 165-74
1411/25Other Western WritersVizenor 106- 10, 120-8, 290-6, 337-58
11/27EXAM 3
1512/2-6Grand AvenueSarris
1612/9-13Reports and Review

FINAL EXAM: Monday, December 16, 1:00-3:00 p. m.