CCOG for ENG 254 Summer 2024

Course Number:
ENG 254
Course Title:
American Literature from 1865
Credit Hours:
Lecture Hours:
Lecture/Lab Hours:
Lab Hours:

Course Description

Introduces multicultural American literature. Explores literature from the land which is now the United States that was published on or after 1865. Covers the interrelationship between geography, politics, history, culture, colonialism, race, and gender has influenced cultural expressions in the USA after the Civil War. Includes various literary forms and genres. Prerequisites: (WR 115 and RD 115) or IRW 115 or equivalent placement. Audit available.

Intended Outcomes for the course

Upon completion of the course students should be able to:

  1. Analyze and discuss works of American literature from a range of genres (e.g. poetry, nonfiction, literary fiction, genre fiction, public proclamations, letters, etc.)
  2. Identify relationships between moments in American history and culture and their representation in works of American literature
  3. Articulate ways that American literature reflects complex historical and cultural experiences.
  4. Produce a mix of critical, creative, and/or reflective works about American literature on or after 1865.

Integrative Learning

Students completing an associate degree at Portland Community College will be able to reflect on one’s work or competencies to make connections between course content and lived experience.

General education philosophy statement

English and Writing courses align with the PCC General Education philosophy by providing an appreciation of writing and literature from global and personal perspectives. Students in English courses engage the imagination, critical inquiry and self‐reflection, and in the process of doing so, cultivate a more complex understanding of their own culture(s), linguistic/communication practices, and perspectives in relation to others. Because the literary arts lie at the heart of most human cultures, they are essential for understanding each other and navigating our differences. In literature classes, students explore significant texts from diverse cultures and periods in history. Students look closely at texts from a range of genres, articulating the way elements of writing, content, form, and style are interrelated, and considering how values and interpretations have changed over time and through different theoretical lenses. Students engage texts through critical analysis and creative response, learning to use evidence to support their interpretations and to navigate critical conversations. Students explore literature both as an art form designed to provoke thought and challenge social norms, and as an expression of human experience. Writing and Literature courses foster a stronger sense of engagement with history, culture, and society. Writing and Literature students develop an awareness of themselves as readers and writers in a global world, and an enlarged understanding of the relationships between language, identity, ideas, scholarship, communication, and transformation.

Course Activities and Design

Course activities may consist of any combination of the following: lectures, group discussion, group projects, viewing films and video texts, listening to recorded readings, guest lectures, research projects, student presentations, in-class journal writing, students' original creative writing, and attending cultural events as a class.

Outcome Assessment Strategies

Assessment tools may include informal responses to study questions; evaluation of small- and full-group discussion; in-class and out-of-class writing; formal essays, as well as informal responses to study questions and other types of informal writing; multimedia compositions and creative projects in various genres; presentations by individuals and groups; short and long essay exams; close reading exercises using support/ evidence; writing exercises which include evaluation of various interpretations of a text and their relative validity. Both instructor and peer evaluation may be incorporated in the assessment process.

Course Content (Themes, Concepts, Issues and Skills)

The course will introduce and foster understanding of:

  • literary themes

  • literary conventions and allusions

  • literary genres

  • literary vocabulary

  • analysis and synthesis

  • contextualization

  • critical reading and thinking

  • essay and response writing

  • close reading and explication

  • language change

  • the idea of a canon

  • literary theory and criticism

Concepts & Skills

  • Critical reading

  • Textual comparison and analysis

  • Historical and contextual analysis

  • Genre analysis