Course Description

This course serves as a gateway to the English major and introduces students to the key concepts, theories, and methods for reading and writing about literature. We will begin by studying the foundational principles of literary analysis through sustained interpretation of selected poetry and one short story. We will then step back and explore various theoretical approaches to literature, thinking through some of the ways that theory can help us to read texts and contexts more critically and creatively. With this foundation in place, we will then dedicate the final month of the course to a literary case study, close reading a single novel and discussing it from several different theoretical perspectives. Throughout the semester, we will also explore the art of writing and revising, as well as the proper methods for writing a research paper. Designed as an introduction, the course will survey current trends in literary scholarship and provide students with the critical tools for reading and writing about literature. Course requirements include participation and attendance, quizzes and in-class assignments, short writing exercises, two short essays, and a final research paper.

Professor Information:

  • Professor Craig Carey, University of Southern Mississippi
  • Email Address:
  • Office Phone: (601) 266-4072
  • Office: Liberal Arts Building 342
  • Office Hours: T/Th 4-5pm, Tues. 12-2:00, and by appt.

Course Information:

  • ENG 340:H001, Analysis of Literature
  • Spring 2016, TTh 5:10-6:25 PM
  • Location: Liberal Arts Building 346

Student Learning Objectives:

By the end of the course, students should have improved their ability:

  • To understand and utilize the skills of literary analysis, including close reading and thesis formulation
  • To critically and creatively engage with major theoretical approaches to literature
  • To understand and deploy key concepts for literary analysis: figurative language, genre, form, etc.
  • To conduct independent research and document it using appropriate style guidelines
  • To understand the formal and literary strategies used by different writers from diverse cultural backgrounds and traditions.
  • To consider how cultural, technological, and political conditions informed how and what people wrote, and for what purpose.
  • To read across a variety of texts and contexts
  • To navigate and critically engage literary scholarship by contemporary critics



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *