ENGL-211-01 Appalachian Literature
Fall for 2008-2009
This course interrogates what it means to be "Appalachian," "hillbilly," or "from the mountains." In this course we will investigate the literature, the culture, and stereotypes of the Appalachian region. We will focus on the mountains as they figure physically and metaphorically in the language and lives of those who have hunted in, lived in, stayed put in, extracted from, left, returned to, or been haunted by the remoteness and the richness of the region. In addition to reading literature by native Appalachians we will study economic and cultural analyses of the region. We will celebrate the culture in an Appalachian feast in which we enjoy foods, music, dance, and storytelling of the region.
Students will write three short papers, do a music presentation, and complete a hypertext project illustrating their understanding of the region in literary, historical, geographical, cultural, and economic contexts. Close reading, class discussion, BlackBoard postings, musical appreciation, and participation in group projects are crucial components of the course. Texts include: River of Earth, by James Still; Jack Weller’s Yesterday’s People; Storming Heaven by Denise Giardina; Oral History by Lee Smith; the Stories of Breece D’J Pancake; Salvation on Sand Mountain by Dennis Covington; Excerpts from Women Writing in Appalachia edited by Ballard and Hudson, and assigned economic, historical and sociological readings by Richard Couto, Dwight Billings & Elizabeth Blee, Richard D. Blake, Mary Beth Pudup, Beth Bingham, etc.
The following syllabi may help you learn more about this course (login required):
Fall '08: O'Connor, P (description)
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