Dr. Monika Brown                                       

monika.brown@uncp.edu                                                   Office Dial 110           

web uncp.edu/home/monika                                                  910-521-6257


        For many centuries the tale of Troy, the tale of Ulysses, and the tale of Jesus have been sufficient for

        mankind. . . . People have told them many times over.–-Jorge Luis Borges, 1967 (Atlantic Sept. 2000)  


        The world is big. . . . Diversity is not an abnormality but the very reality of our planet. The human world celebrates

        itself in the magnificence of its endless varieties.  Civility is a sensible attribute in this kind of world we have;          

        narrowness of heart and mind is not.–-Chinua Achebe, Bates College Address, 27 May 1996     


        We shall not cease from exploration, and the end of all our exploring

        will be to arrive where we started, and know the place for the first time-–T.S. Eliot Four Quartets 1942                        

Web Sites: Literature, Arts, Media
Literature Guide:  Interpreting Literature, Art, and Film
Cultural Contexts for World Literature and Humanities



      ENG 2050 is "A survey of western and non-western literatures from the beginnings through the Renaissance
considered within the cultural epochs of their creation, including the Classical Period, the Middle Ages, and the Renaissance. 
may include selections from Gilgamesh, Homer, Ovid, Confucius, Dante, and Cervantes.” 
Created hundreds and even thousands of years ago, readings in this class depict heroes, journeys, and conflicts that reveal
features of societies and cultures in the modern world.  
        One theme is the interaction and conflict between two ways of seeing the world: “Athens”–- reason and science --
and “Jerusalem” –- spiritual revelation (Jeffrey Hart Smiling Through the Cultural Catastrophe):  
            in Unit I, Ancient Mediterranean epics and Greek golden age drama reflect rationalism;
            in Unit II, epics, tales, and poems reveal spiritual cultures around the world;
            in Unit III essays, poems and novel  show faith and reason in creative tension as Europeans engage the world 

      You are invited into a community that critically reads and interprets literature.  Each text is transformed by its readers
and takes on new meanings as we experience it, talk about it, or adapt it to other media and situations. 
Many interpretations are valid, if based on evidence from the text.  Your own interpretations-shaped by who you are,
what you have experienced, and what you know–will be enriched by awareness of contexts and literary terms. 

      As a Humanities class, ENG 2050 cultivates knowledge, skills, and habits of mind for meaningful living and wise choices. 
Literature and arts, through artistic forms, insist that "attention must be paid," in playwright Arthur Miller's words, to particular
and creative works and to enduring themes.  Works of art involve us in experiences, express the complexity and
diversity of our world, and interpret and question cultures and values.  They engage our emotions and our intellects, deepen our
self-awareness, connect us with artists and creation, stimulate our sense of beauty and wonder, and challenge us to think
critically, to question, to respect others, to care, and to act. 



          The Longman Anthology of World Literature, Vols I A, B, and C 

            supplies: small ring binder, a folder for your essay, post-its to mark pages, internet access   


ASSIGNMENTS AND GRADING     (100 points)                                                                                 

             Unit 1 and 2 Tests on readings and class topics: short answer, short essay                       30

               Final Exam and Unit 3 test                                                                                         15

               (Group) Project (group of 2 to 3 students or individual, 5 min per student)                      10

              Critical Essay: 5-6 page essay, citing 4-5 sources (models and some sources provided)    20

              Seven 1-page Discussion Forum Posts and weekly responses to posts                           16

               Quizzes                                                                                                                      9       

               Classwork:  attendance, participation, contributions to classroom groups                     +2 to -3                                 


   grade values: A 95, A- 91, B+ 88, B 85 ... course average:  A+  97-99  A 92-96   A- 90-91    B+ 87-89 ...



Honor Code and Plagiarism. The department endorses strongly principles of the Academic Honor Code: 

*as in ENG 105 and 106, give credit for notes, document correctly (MLA), use “quote marks” when you copy   

*all tests and papers are integrated with course content, so you must do your own work to receive credit

*plagiarism that is fraud, presenting another’s work as your own, is reported and means F in the course 





ENG 2050  WORLD LITERATURE BEFORE 1660   Dr. Monika Brown            Syllabus p.2


expectations and class procedures   C or above in ENG/Comp 106 is prerequisite for literature       
*Reading a literary text is a life experience, with challenges and rewards, like visiting a monument. 

Study guides (like sparknotes) work like guidebooks or postcards: useful, but only for guidance and review.

         In ENG 205, you  learn actively, both on your own and in a classroom community.  Using critical reading and discussion--
informed by your knowledge and experiences as well as course content--you interpret content and insights into experience
(characters, actions, settings, themes); analyze genres and formal features; connect works to biographical, historical, and
cultural contexts; examine responses and adaptations; and evaluate quality.   Extending skills from writing courses,
you critically read, write, and research, talk and listen, interpret and connect, state and defend insights and
value judgments, examine your responses, question and care.

        The course design, textbooks, Literature Guide handout, guided reading and writing schedules, and test study guides
provide a "road map" structure, directions, and models for success in the course. 


ASSIGNMENTS: BRIEF DESCRIPTIONS (see study sheets and assignment sheets for tests & essay)


<>Three Tests (including Exam):  Identification for context terms and literary terms and skills;  short answers (2-3 sent.)
about literary texts, based on reading questions and class topics; short essays


Report or Activity related to a class topic (1-3 students, 5+ min/student, up to 20 min.; evaluation sheet)

Prepare & present a class report or activity that involves an ENG 205 text, genre, or cultural context.  
Be creative:  try skit, debate, slide show, video, powerpoint, etc; quote texts, involve students.  Identify sources.  
Projects are due on the day a literary text is studied OR during a reports class, late in Unit 3.  

*Teach a story, section, or poem/s (due day we study it); you may ask class to prepare in a special way.

*Cross Currents or Perspectives:  introduce 2-3 related texts/pix in a Longman Anthology special section

*Legacy Report: show how an Ancient or Medieval text we study is adapted to new context, e.g.

a major web site, an adaptation in art/film/music/poem, documentary film, or concept in an academic field      

*Cultural Event Connection  attend, study & report on campus or community exhibit/event; relate to 205    

*Community Connection: provide assistance &/or conduct research in a community and connect it with 205     


A Critical Essay: 5-6 page guided argument, submitted in process stages, about a tragedy in Unit 1.

The essay refers briefly to 4-5 critical/historical sources (some provided), documented in Works Cited. 


COURSE OBJECTIVES As expected in ENG 2000-level literature guidelines, students will:

1.1  describe and interpret multiple works of literature that vary in genre and in historical and/or cultural context 

1.2  recognize and refer to features of various literary genres and selected literary and cultural terms

2.1   describe, analyze, interpret, and evaluate features of literary texts in several genres, applying appropriate literary
and cultural terms

2.2  critically analyze and interpret relations of a literary text with other texts and with historical and cultural contexts

3.1  plan, write, and revise short critical essays about literature with good insights and suitable argument, organization, evidence,
and analysis

3.2  write short critical essays about literature that integrate appropriate primary and secondary sources, correct documentation,
and standard written English

4.1 develop habits of mind such as taking responsibility for work, confidence, cooperation, and reflection   

4.2  experience literature as an extension of life experience and appreciate literary study as a means for intellectual, aesthetic,
and personal growth and for fostering creativity and social awareness


UNCP Teaching Standard I is fulfilled : The teacher candidate commands essential knowledge and understandings of the academic
discipline(s) from which school subject matter is derived and integrates that knowledge into personally meaningful frameworks.



1. Attend all classes & forums, on time.  After 1 absence lose 1 pt from your average for each absence/2 tardies

    three evening absences means F. If you must miss a test, e-mail/call in advance to make it up before the next class. 

2. Come prepared, and participate:  Read the texts, prepare questions, contribute to group/class activities, and   
listen to others, with courtesy and attention, so you can perform well on tests and papers and peer evaluation

3. Turn in your best work, on time. If you must be late, ask in advance & do not skip class when work is due. 

4. Proofread and let others check:  errors or unclear writing that interfere with meaning may lower a grade to D.

5. Get help with an assignment-before its due date-from instructor, class members, friends, the writing center.

6. Learn by revising. Turn in revision of graded paper or test--original attached; new grade averages w/ original. 

ADA Policy:  A student with a documented disability needing adjustments should speak to the instructor and to
Disability Support Services, D.F. Lowry Bldg, 521-6270, in the first class week. All discussions are confidential. 


ENG 205   WORLD LITERATURE BEFORE 1660: CLASS SCHEDULE Fall 2006 (a hybrid evening class)


In this blended class, readings and “meetings” are split each week.  We meet on campus Thursday night, 6:30-8:25.
By Monday night each week, ½ the class (*or #) creates Forum Posts; all read & post a reply.  


Unit I Ancient Cultures of the Mediterranean and India: Epics and Drama (Longman  Vol. A)


A. Ancient Greek Epics and Heroes

      Th Aug. 17       the epic (class) Homer, The Iliad: summary, video, and sections of Books 1, 22, 24  

      M  Aug. 21*      Homer The Odyssey: Bk 1-13 sum & Bk 1-2(291-308), parts of Bk 8½-12 (386-416)

      Th Aug. 24       Homer, The Odyssey: Book 14-24 summary, and Books 20 ½ -23 (540-73)   


B.  Ancient Epics from Mesopotamia and India

      M  Aug. 28#      The Epic of Gilgamesh, Tablets 1-7 (88-114)

      Th Aug. 31       The Epic of Gilgamesh  Tablets 8-11 (88-129)

      M Sep. 4*         The Ramayana of Valmiki (878-917)


C.  Greek Tragic Drama from Classical Athens     

      Th Sep.7           tragedy; and Sophocles, Oedipus the King (650-688); essay directions

      M Sep.11#         Euripides,  Medea, Prologue and Scenes 1-3  (748-766)

      Th Sep. 14              Euripides, Medea, whole play; comedy: Lysistrata scenes in class


      M/T Sp 18-19    Test Essay Due (500-600 wds, 25pts of Test 1): all students post on Blackboard

Th Sep. 21        Unit I Test; literary research and essay revision workshop


Unit II   Medieval Spiritual Cultures: Epics, Tales, Lyric Poems  (Longman Anthology Vol. B)


A.  Spiritual Texts and Poems from World Religions (Vol. A and B.)


      M Sep. 24*         Monotheist literature, connecting God and humans: Hebrew psalms A174-5(or choice)

                                 Christian sermon Luke 6 A1333/Matthew 5-7; poems Hildegard&Mechthild B1053-64

                              Islamic Qur’an B425, int&Sura 1, 4, 8, 87, 93, 110; poems by Hafiz B467, Rumi B597

      Th Sep. 28       Chinese taoist Poems, Tang Dynasty: Han-Shan, Li Po, Tu Fu, Li Quingzhao       


B.  Islamic Epic and Framed Tales: Arab World and Africa

      M Oct. 2#          West African/Islamic Epic   Son-Jara, aka Sundiata (638-70)

      Thu Oct. 5          Islamic Tales: 1001 Arabian Nights, selections (524-58 and 589-92)


C.  Late Medieval Christian Framed Tales and Epic


     1.  Chaucer, selections from Canterbury Tales

       M Oct. 9*#             Chaucer Canterbury Tales (1239ff): Prologue, Wife of Bath’s Prologue, Miller’s Tale

      Th Oct. 12         Fall Break, midterm grades


    2.  Medieval Christian Art Epic: Dante’s Divine Comedy    

      M  Oct. 16              Post revised critical essays by Tuesday 11pm

      Th Oct. 19        Revised Critical Essay Due; turn or mail, with draft/test essay, response, sources

                              Dante, in class:  1065-68, 1075-77; video summary, Inferno Cantos 1-3 (1078-88)    

      M Oct.23*#  all post: Dante Inferno, Cantos 4-6 (1188-98); 8-10 (1101-11),  and 13 (1118-22)     

      Th Oct. 26              Dante, Inferno Ct .32-34 (1186ff), Purgatorio Ct.2(1201f), 30 (1215f); Paradiso-class  

      M Oct. 30            Test review forum      

      Th Nov. 2           Unit II Test, Unit III intro; Group Project


Unit III  Early Modern European Cultures: Poems, Essays, Novel  (Longman Anthology Vol. C)


A.  Humanism, Religious Crises, and Personal Expression:  Poems, Poetry Sequences, Essays

     Th Nov. 9             Critical Essay Due, in a folder with all drafts, responses, and sources

                                   In class: lyric poems by Petrarch, Shakespeare, Donne, Bradstreet,Christine de Pizan                 

     M Nov. 13*#        humanist& religious texts: Machiavelli Prince, King James Bible, Luther, St. Teresa        


B. The Novel   Cervantes, Don Quixote      

     Th Nov. 16          Cervantes, Don Quixote  Part I summary (handout) and ch. 1-ch. 18 (479-506)                       

     M Nov. 19*#        Cervantes, Don Q  Part I ch. 22, 25(514-32);  Part II sum.& early/late chaps. 532-64       

     Th Nov. 23        Thanksgiving Holiday


     M Nov. 27           

     Th Nov. 30           review of poems, exam review, Connection Reports            

     Th Dec. 7           Exam and Unit III test