Department of English, C-309


ENGLISH 66: FALL, 2005


Mon., Tues., Thurs. B hour (9:10 -10:10 am) C215

Office: C-219  Messages: C-309 or 368-5849 E-mail:

NOTE: The easiest way to reach me is by email.


Required Readings: (books may be purchased at the KCC Book Store)


  • Man's Search for Meaning by Viktor Frankl

  • The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho

  • The Secret Life of Bees by Sue Monk Kidd (Publ. Penguin)

  • A View from the Bridge by Arthur Miller (Publ. Penguin)       

  • The Bluest Eye by Toni Morrison (Publ. Plume/Penguin)

  • She's Come Undone by Wally Lamb (Publ. Washington Square)

  • To Live by Yu Hua        

  • The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood


    Class Handouts and Readings on Course Web Site:


    Course Overview


                English 66, "Literature and Human Behavior", is a course that examines the complexities of human behavior as they are presented in literature. We will analyze various literary themes and genres in the context of their behavioral implications, and will explore cross-cultural similarities and differences.


                This course will be taught in an interactive style. While I will lecture on the material, you will also be expected to take an active role in class and to share your ideas about the works read. Please note that participation, along with attendance and preparation, counts for 20% of your grade.


    Method of evaluation:


                You will be evaluated on the basis of a midterm exam, a final exam, a research paper, and the quality of your class participation and preparation.  Your grade will be calculated as follows:


                Midterm exam: 20%

                Final exam: 20%

                Research paper: 20%

                Quizzes: 20%

                Attendance, Class Participation and Preparation: 20%


    You are allowed a MAXIMUM of six hours of absence in this course. Please be sure that you attend all classes unless you are ill or have an emergency. If you are absent, please email me so that I can send you the day’s assignment. You will receive a failing grade if you are excessively absent from class.


    The midterm and final exam will ask questions that require you to write thoughtful analyses of the books read.


    Class Participation and Preparation is key to your success in the course.  To be prepared you must finish reading each of the books by the FIRST DAY OF THE WEEK in which we discuss them. You will be required to produce an in-class written response to the book on that day.  This response will be graded as a QUIZ.


    Course outline: Timeframes and dates proposed are estimates and will be adjusted as necessary. Dates listed in boldface type are quiz dates.


                            September 8, 12, 13, 15, 19, 20: Introduction to literature and human behavior: Viktor Frankl and Carol Gilligan; psychological theories-Stanley Milgram. Website on Gilligan versus Kohlberg. QUIZ ON FRANKL ON TUESDAY, SEPT. 13; QUIZ ON GILLIGAN/KOHLBERG ON TUESDAY, SEPT. 20.


                            September 22, 26, 27: The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho (Milgram/Frankl) QUIZ ON THURSDAY, SEPT. 22.


    September 29, October 3, 6: To Live by Yu Hua (Milgram/Frankl/Milgram/Gilligan)  QUIZ ON THURSDAY, SEPT. 29.


    October 11, 17, 18: The Bluest Eye by Toni Morrison (Gilligan/Frankl) QUIZ ON TUESDAY, OCTOBER 18.


    October 20: Discuss Term Paper Format/Requirements


    Week 6: Midterm exam and review

                            Review: October 24; Midterm Exam: October 25 and 27


    October 31, November 1, 3, 10: The Poetry of Sylvia Plath


    November 14, 15, 17: She's Come Undone by Wally Lamb (Frankl, Milgram, Gilligan) QUIZ ON MONDAY, NOVEMBER 14.


    November 21, 22, 28: The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood (Frankl, Milgram, Gilligan) QUIZ ON MONDAY, NOVEMBER 21.


                            November 29, December 1, 5: A View from the Bridge by Arthur Miller (Frankl, Milgram) QUIZ ON TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 29.


    December 6, 8: Overall review of themes and issues




    Finals Week—Wednesday, December 14—Tuesday, December 20: Final exam