ERIC Number: ED236697
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1983-Apr
Reference Count: 0
Beowulf Debunked: A Pragmatic Approach to English Literature.
Ruter, Allan J.
Students need to be made comfortable with the "foreign" language of British English before they can fathom the range of and changes in English literature through the centuries. In one approach to college English, students spend most of the first semester studying nineteenth century novels. After having studied four such novels, each for between two and four weeks, students have acquired a confidence in their abilities to read and analyze the literature of another country. During the second semester, therefore, the students are able to survey an expanse of English poetry that previously would have crushed them under its metaphorical weight. Rather than having students study the poetry en masse, certain poems are selected and collected into six short units, chronologically ordered. From there the students move into plays or short novels. In this way, they focus not on chronology, not on themes, but on the works themselves. By the time the students reach twentieth century literature, they can better appreciate it because they understand what precedes it. (A sequence of literature for a college English course is appended.) (HOD)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Guides - Non-Classroom
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the National Council of Teachers of English Spring Conference (2nd, Seattle, WA, April 14-16, 1983).