English 151C, Section 21 -- Overview of Class Participation Assignments


Here are the guidelines:  to receive 100 points on class participation, you must write a one-page short essay on four (4) of these questions, and answer, in class, fifteen (15) of these questions. 


·       Give a definition and example for 3 of the literary terms for essays.

·       Why is English literature a required course for so many majors?

·       How many things are you doing right now because someone else told you that you should?  At what point is intelligent agreement necessary to a happy life?

·       Is there a list of books that every educated American should have read?

·       Is it meaningful to protest in print?  Is the pen mightier than the sword, or are both obsolescent?

·       Now that you’ve read a few essays, what do you think a great essay should do?

·       If you have to pick one object or one place that typifies something about American culture, where or what would it be, and why?

·       Give a definition and example for 3 of the literary terms for short stories.

·       What makes for a good short story?

·       What price is worth paying for peace?

·       The refrain from “A Civil Peace” is “nothing puzzles God.”  What are the different meanings of that saying?

·       Why would a learned scholar choose to re-tell a folk tale? 

·       What does O’Connor mean when she writes “She would of been a good woman… "if it had been somebody there to shoot her every minute of her life."

·       What really happened to Katigiri?  Does it even make sense to ask this question?

·       Give a definition and example for 3 of the literary terms for poetry.

·       Who or what is the Green Knight, and what does he do for Sir Gawain?

·       There is a debate about who wrote “Sir Gawain and the Green Knight” because it was found with a series of other poems that are clearly Christian. Is this also a Christian poem?

·       In Browning’s poem, why is the unnamed woman the “last” Duchess?

·       Sonnets are especially good at showing reversals of feelings and revelations within a short bright moment and also good for advertising skill within a genre. What media do we use for the same purpose today?

·       What themes is Keats exploring in his “Ode to a Nightingale?”  Is it like anything else we’ve read this semester?

·       Give a definition and example for 3 of the literary terms for plays.

·       What kind of leader is Oedipus?

·       If there is such a thing as fate, is it possible for anyone to escape it? 

·       What would the worst possible thing you could discover about yourself be?

·       Othello, the story of a jealous husband who murders his wife, was performed at celebration of the marriage of James II’s daughter Princess Elizabeth to Frederick V, the Elector Palatine.  Shakespeare reworks an old play in which the basic theme was “let this be a warning to local girls who marry foreigners” and tells it in reverse:  “let this be a warning to foreigners who marry our local girls.”   Why do you think he this theme was considered suitable for a wedding play?

·       Does Iago have a motive for jealousy?  What is that motive?

·       How does a good man protect himself from motiveless evil?