Dear American Literature Students. We are slightly past the midway point of the semester and I want to commend you for your excellent weekly posts thus far. I have posted mid-term grades which can be found in the OpenLab Gradebook on the right side of our site homepage (when you click on Check Your Grade, only your grades will be visible to you, when you are logged in).
The possible midterm grades are as follows: P (Passing), BL (Boderline), U (Unsatisfactory/Failing). The midterm grade does not get recorded on your transcript in any way; it is more just to let you know how you are doing in the class thus far. Every professor should be giving you a midterm grade by 10/30.
Instead of your first formal essay, I am also giving you a grade for the collective work you’ve done so far on your posts. For this class, I will only require one formal essay (4-5 typed pages) on an author and topic of your choice based on material we’ve covered in this class. This essay will be due at the end of the semester but I want you to choose a topic in the next two weeks.
THIS WEEK’S ASSIGNMENT
In celebration of our haunted week, I want to introduce you to one of America’s most famous writers, best known for his horror stories that have influenced fiction and film into the present: Edgar Allan Poe. Poe was America’s first successful author and part of a larger school of artists, writers, and philosophers known as The American Renaissance (or rebirth of literature). For the remainder of the semester, we will be reading authors from this school which include Ralph Waldo Emerson, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Herman Melville, Henry David Thoreau, Emily Dickinson, and Walt Whitman. All of these authors were ground-breaking for their originality, wild imagination, and general brilliance.
Here is brief biography of Edgar Allan Poe:
For this week’s assignment, I ask you to:
Read: Edgar Allan Poe’s “Tell-Tale Heart”
Listen: Poe’s “The Raven”
and then [if you can]
View: Stephen King’s 1922 (film) [On Netflix].
WARNING: This film is somewhat violent and has some gory scenes. No need to view this film if you do not like horror films of this kind.
Of particular interest is that King’s film is based on the same premise
of “The Tell-Tale Heart” but changed in terms of setting, length, and film format.
The modern horror writer Stephen King was a big fan of Poe and heavily
influenced by him.
Please post a response to your thoughts on the poem, story, and/or film.