Pacific Literature 185-02
Freshman Writing Seminar
MWF 10:10-11:00/GS 348
Shipwrecks, Castaways and Natives: Readings in the Literature of the South Seas and Pacific Islands
In this course we will journey with 19th century European and American castaways such as Herman Melville, R.M Ballantyne and Robert Louis Stevenson to the tropical islands of the South Seas and encounter cannibals, missionaries, noble savages, tattooing and the exotic, "free love" paradises they depicted in Polynesia. We will examine these themes in a dialogue with Samoan, Tongan, and Maori writers including Epeli Hau'ofa and Albert Wendt. We will discuss the 19th century texts in relation to contemporary concerns in the Pacific like tourism, sovereignty and nuclear testing. Requirements: a few short essay assignments, student presentations, and active class participation.
10% Grammar exercises, Quizzes and Homework.
10% Class Presentation 5 minutes each on either a Pacific Island country, artefact or discussion theme relevant to the text of that class. This will require some preliminary library research and you must hand in an annotated bibliography at the time of your presentation. You must meet with me to discuss your presentation beforehand. Your presentation may include pictures, maps, statistics, etc. photocopied for the class. Since you are required to meet with me twice during the semester, this will count as one of your required conferences.
70% Writing - This includes short homework assignments (10%); 3-5 page essays (30%); and 5-6 page rewrites of these two essays (30%).
NB: in line with FWS policy, your course mark will be downgraded for more than three unexplained absences.
I. Class Participation,
Attendance & Email participation (10%) *A large percentage of
your grade will be determined by your active participation in
class. This means coming to class on time, having read the
assigned materials (and/or having viewed the assigned films) and
having thoughtful discussion questions to stimulate class
discussion. *Attendance: University policy allows three absences;
any more than this will seriously hinder your grade.
II. Grammar exercises,
Quizzes and Homework (10%) * Grammar exercises are taken from the
Practical English Handbook and are due at the start of class.
III. Class Presentations,
IV. Writing Assignments
Due dates: Papers are to be handed in at the start of class and will be considered late anytime after that. Late papers will not be accepted and a zero will be averaged into your grade unless you have made other arrangements with me.
Memos: All essays submitted in this class must have an attached "memo" where you explain what writing techniques you are trying to develop or improve. Your memo should incorporate comments received on your last essay, and may also reflect on the ways in which grammatical structures from the Handbook or in-class exercises appear in your writing. Conferences: In addition to your presentation conference, you are also required to meet with me one other time (outside of class) to discuss your writing.
Rewrites: You have the opportunity to rewrite and expand two essays. All of your rewrites must have the original essay attached. Format: All papers and essays submitted for this class must be proofread, spell-checked, typed, double-spaced, page numbered, and printed in 12 or 10" font. Points will be deducted from your grade if they lack any components of this format. Always attribute page numbers parenthetically for each quote. Always ensure that the essay you are submitting is in its final form--not a draft. If you are submitting a rewrite, you must attach the original version Plagiarism: or academic theft, is passing someone else's work as your own. See the sections in Cornell's Policy Notebook about "Code of Academic Integrity" and "Acknowledging the Work of Others." Plagiarism can lead to prosecution and can effect your permanent record.
Syllabus is subject to change at professor's discretion.
Part One: Missionaries and Castaways
Week One (Aug
W: Ballantyne - The Coral Island chpts 1-5
F: The Coral Island chpts
Week Two (Sept
W: The Coral Island chpts 14-17
F: The Coral Island chpts
Week Three (Sept
W: Hau'ofa "Blessed
are the Meek" (cp) (Hau'ofa, Epeli. Tales of the Tikongs.
Auckland: Longman Paul, 1983.)
F: HW: Grammar: 33
Apostrophes: ex.4 (p.199)
Week Four (Sept
W: "The Beach of
Falesá" chpt 3
F: "The Beach of
Falesá" chpt 4
Week Five (Sept
W: Jully Makini "Roviana Girl" (cp) (Wendt, Albert. ed. Nuanua: Pacific Writing in English Since 1980. Honolulu: U of Hawai'i Press, 1995.)
F: Melville Typee (Preface
and chpt 1)
Part Two: Tattooing & Cannibals
Week Six (Oct 4-8th)
W: Typee (chs.5-8)
F: HW: Grammar: Tense and sequence of tenses: ex.9 (p.47) Voice: ex.10 (p.49)
Week Seven (Oct
W: Peer Group Work Meetings
F: Melville Typee (chs.9-11)
Week Eight (Oct
W: Typee (chs.20-24)
F: Typee (chs.25-28)
Week Nine (Oct
W: Vijay Mishra "Beachcombers" (cp) (Wendt, Albert. ed. nuanua: Pacific Writing in English Since 1980. Honolulu: U of Hawai'i Press, 1995.)
F: Wendt "Tatauing the
postcolonial body" (cp) in SPAN (Journal of the South
Pacific Association for Commonwealth Literature and Language
Week Ten (November
W: HW Grammar: 11 Choppy sentences and excessive coordination: ex.1(p.89)12 Subordination: ex.2 and ex.3 (p.92)
F: Writing workshop--bring
3 copies of draft to class
Week Eleven (Nov
W: Noumea Simi "What are we?" (cp) (Wendt, Albert. ed. Nuanua: Pacific Writing in English Since 1980. Honolulu: U of Hawai'i Press, 1995.)
F: Hereniko and Teaiwa Last Virgin in Paradise (Scene I & II)
Week Twelve (Nov
W: Last Virgin in Paradise "Images of Paradise" and "Pacific Clowning"
F: HW Grammar: 15 Consistency: ex.6 (p.100); 16 Position of modifiers: ex.8 (p.108)
Week Thirteen (Nov
W: Sons for the return home - film discussion (view before class)
F: No class--Thanksgiving Break
Part Four: Tourism and the Nuclear Pacific
Week Fourteen (Nov
W: Hau'ofa "The Ocean
within us" (cp) in Dreadlocks in Oceania
F: Celo Kulagoe "Peace
Signs" (cp) (in Wendt, Lali)
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