FALL 2010 / WINTER 2011
Prerequisite: first year English Course or second year standing.
Please confirm location on Carleton Central
Professor Brenda Carr Vellino
Office Telephone: 520-2600 x2321
[email protected]
Office Hours: DT 1815
T 4:30-5:30; F 1:30-2:30 or appointment
“Hey, what are you doing?”
she said, and he said
“I'm just standing here
being a Canadian”
and she said “Wow
is that really feasible?”
and he said “Yes
but it requires plenty of imagination.”
--Lionel Kearns, “Public Poem for Manitoulin Island Canada Day,” Canlit. In English, Vol. 1
From “Own the Podium” to "hockey night in Canada" to "true north, strong and free" to beavers, loons, moose,
and maple leafs, the representation of Canada through our literature, icons, myths, cultural heroes, and music
contributes to how we “imagine” Canada. This introductory course to Canadian literatures in English explores
how literary representation from before Confederation to contemporary times plays a central role in
constructing and contesting the idea of “Canada” and “national identity.” Just as the map and political status of
Canada has changed over several centuries, so the idea of Canada has changed as a result of controversy and
negotiation among the peoples who inhabit this land. Encounters with a diverse selection of writing, including
exploration and settler narratives, novels, short fiction, poetry, drama, and essays, will allow us to examine how
writers in Canada represent questions of national identity in relation to gender, ethnicity, sexuality, and regional
identity. We will consider these questions as they arise from the social, political, historical, and economic
contexts within which ideas of the Canadian nation and a national literature emerged. This course will ask us to
think about ourselves as “readers who are citizens” (to borrow an idea from Margaret Atwood). Knowing our
literatures helps us to better understand our many histories and our many selves.
Please note that ENGL 2802 is a writing attentive course. A portion of class time will be devoted to developing
and improving essay writing and research skills.
In ENGL 2802, “writing attentive” means the following:
Students will write at least one examination.
Students will write a number of formal essays in which they are expected to do the following:
*develop a thesis statement
*develop complex ideas using correct and effective expression, according to academic English practice
*develop literary reading skills through close analysis of poetry and/or prose passages
*use and cite evidence from primary texts appropriately
*develop secondary research and citation skills
Books: Available at Mothertongue Books, 1067 Bank St. (just N. of Sunnyside Ave.).
Course Anthology: Moss, Laura and Cynthia Sugars, eds. Canadian Literature in English: Texts and Contexts.
Vol. 1 and 2 (bundled at a discount). Toronto: Pearson, 2008.
Ross, Sinclair. As For Me and My House. Toronto: M & S, 1941, 1989.
Alan Cumyn. The Sojourn. Toronto: M & S, 2003.
Tremblay, Michel. Les Belles Soeurs. Vancouver: Talonbooks, 1965, 1992.
Kogawa, Joy. Obasan. Toronto: Penguin, 1981.
Highway, Thompson. The Rez Sisters. Saskatoon: Fifth House, 1987, 1992.
Ondaatje, Michael. Anil's Ghost. Toronto: Knopf, 2000.
Barnet, Sylvan. A Short Guide to Writing About Literature. 2nd Canadian ed. New York: Harper Collins,
Cuddon, J.A. Penguin Dictionary of Literary Terms and Literary Theory. 4th ed. Penguin Books, 2004.
Course Assignments:
Short Essay One (500 words) – Due: Oct. 5
Essay Two (1500 words) - Due: Nov. 25
Mid-year Exam (Poem analysis, Short Answer)
(Exam Period – TBA)
Annotated Bibliography – Due: Feb. 17
Research Essay (2000 words) – Due: April 5
Final Exam (Passage analysis, short answer, comparative essay)
Course Blog Reading Responses – 4 text responses, 1 event responses (per term) 10%
*literary reading: attention to language, style, genre, and form
*critical and independent thinking
*writing process skills: brainstorming, drafting, revising, editing
*university level research & application
*co-operative, active, & connected learning
*critical citizenship
KEY: Vol. 1 or Vol. 2 (Can. Lit. In English: Texts and Contexts); Handouts (HO)
Note: Students are responsible for all of the readings listed here and are expected to complete the readings prior
to the class for which they are scheduled. In addition to the texts listed below, students are responsible for any
handouts distributed in class or made available via WebCT.
Sept. 9 Course Intro: The Reader as Detective
Sept. 14 “Narratives of Encounter” (Vol. 1, pp. 15-32); New France Exploration Narratives: Cartier and
De Champlain (Vol. 1, pp. 41-51, pp. 51-56).
Sept. 16 Hudson's Bay Co. Ethnography: Samuel Hearne; David Thompson (Vol. 1, pp. 70-81; pp. 81-89).
Special Outing: GCTC, Sunday Sept. 19, 2 p.m.: “Pay What You Can” Matinee of The List by Jennifer
Tremblay; Meet the English Lit. Society in the lobby at 1:30 or bring a friend.
Sept. 21 Franklin Expedition (Vol. 1, pp. 90-102); Lady Franklin's Lament (Vol 1, p. 107); Stan Roger's
“NorthWest Passage” (Vol. II, p. 515).
Sept. 23 Narratives of Emigration, Settlement, and Invasion” (Vol. 1, 109-131); Female Settler
Narratives: Catherine Parr Traill (Vol. 1, pp. 193-208).
Sept. 28 Female Settler Narratives: Susanna Moodie (Vol. 1, pp. 208-230).
Sept. 30 Moodie; Margaret Atwood, from The Journals of Susanna Moodie, “Disembarking at Quebec,”
“Further Arrivals” (Vol. 2, 433-36, 441, 442).
Special Outing: Sept. 30, meet at the Canadian Museum of Civilization at 5:45, Student Admission, $5.
See website for busroutes and directions.
Oct. 5 First Nations Orature: “The Great Tree of Peace” (HO); Joseph Brant; George Copway (Vol. 1, pp.
144-145, 239-244); Short Essay Due: 500 word passage analysis.
Oct. 7 Contemporary First Nations Respond: Brian Maracle, (Vol. 1, pp.1-13); Jeanette Armstrong, (Vol.
2, pp. 596-602); Thom King, “Borders” ( Vol. 2, pp. 578-589).
Happy Thanksgiving!
Oct. 12: Black Loyalist Canadas : Boston King, Mary Ann Shadd (Vol. 1, pp. 147-153, 244-250).
Special Outing: English Dept. Distinguished Lecture by Canadian Eco-Poet Don McKay. TBA
Oct. 14 Writing Workshop: Grammar and Punctuation Refresher; Contemporary Black Canadas:
George Elliot Clarke (Vol. 2, pp. 658, 661, 662).
Oct. 19 “A New Nationality” (Vol. 1, 251-274); “The British North America Act,””The Indian Act” (Vol. 1,
pp. 293-295, 318-326); Alex Muir (Vol. 1, pp. 315-317); “Anti-Confederation Song,” “Oh Canada” (Vol. 1,
317-318; 326-329); McGee, “Protection for Canadian Literature” (Vol. 1, 302-306); Louis Riel, (Vol. 1, 329336); Agnes Machar, “Plea for the Life of Riel” (Vol 1, 306-308, 314-315); Chief Dan George, “Lament for
Confederation” (Vol. 2, pp. 251-252); Marilyn Dumont, “Letter to Sir John A. Macdonald” (Vol. 2, 645).
Oct. 21 Post-Confederation Conservationist Poets: Charles G. D. Roberts, “Canada,” “The Winter Fields,”
“The Flight of Geese,” “The Poetry of Nature,” “As Down the Woodland Ways” (Vol. 1, pp. 351-354, 360,
361-363); Archibald Lampman, “The Railway Station,” “The City at the End of Things,” “Winter Evening,”
“Two Canadian Poets,” “In the Wilds,” “Winter Uplands” (Vol. 1, 411-414, 416, 417, 419, 420-423 and HO).
Oct. 26 Poet Laureate of Indian Affairs: D.C. Scott: "Onondaga Madonna," "Night Hymns on Lake
Nipigon," “Indian Place Names,” “Powassan's Drum,” “The Last of the Indian Treaties” (Vol. 1, pp. 423-427,
431, 433-436, 437-440); Armand Ruffo, “Poem for Duncan Campbell Scott” (Vol. 2, p. 648).
Oct. 28 The New Woman/Mixed Blood Performance Poetry: Agnes Machar, “The New Ideal of
Womanhood” (Vol. 1, pp. 306-3140; Pauline Johnson: “Cry of an Indian Wife” ; ”Song My Paddle
Sings,”“The Cattle Thief,” “Fate of the Red Man”(Vol. 1, pp. 390-394, 395, 396-398, 398-400, 403-405).
Nov. 2 Making it New in Canada” (Vol. 2, pp. 1-70; Emily Carr (pp. 35-40); Lawren Harris (pp. 66-70).
Nov. 4 Canadian Imagism: F.R. Scott, “The Canadian Authors Meet,” “Laurentian Shield,” “Minutes from
Preview Editorial Meeting” (Vol. 2, pp. 82-85, 87-88, 91-93); A. J. M. Smith, “To Hold in a Poem,” “The
Lonely Land,” “A Rejected Preface” (Vol. 2, pp. 94-95, 95-98, 99-102).
Nov. 9 Transcanada (Dis)unities & Myths: “The Chinese Immigration Act”: 336-339;
The Modernist Long Poem: E.J. Pratt, From“Towards the Last Spike” (Vol. 2, pp. 51-53, 55-66); F.R.Scott
“All the Spikes But the Last,” (Vol. 2, p. 91).
Nov. 11 Writing Workshop: bring a sample introductory paragraph with a thesis statement for Essay
One to class.
Special Outing: GCTC, Sunday, Nov. 14, 2 p.m.: “Pay What You Can” Matinee of Vimy by Vern
Thiessen, Meet the English Lit. Society in the lobby at 1:30 and/or bring a friend.
Nov. 16 Canadian Modernist Novel Intro: Regionalism, Naturalism, Psychological Landscapes; Sinclair
Ross, As For Me and My House
Nov. 18 Symbolic Setting, As For Me and My House
Nov. 23 Diary Form & "the unreliable narrator," As For Me and My House
Nov. 25 Narrative Secrets & Unresolved Endings, As For Me and My House
Essay Two Due in Class
Nov. 30 Eco-Poetry: P.K. Page, “Planet Earth” (Vol. 2, 192, 198-199); Al Purdy, “The Country North of
Belleville” (Vol. 2, pp. 272-276) Don McKay, (Vol. 2, pp. 567-578) Rita Wong, “nervous organism”, “canola
queasy” (Vol. 2, pp. 692-694).
Dec. 2 Exam Review & Study Tips (Sample Questions provided only in this class).
December Exam: Time & Room TBA
Happy Chanukah, Happy Winter Solstice, Joyeux Noel, Merry Christmas!
III. Canada at War
Jan. 4 Exam & Essay Feedback; Intro. to War Heroes: John Macrae - “In Flander's Fields” (Vol. 1, pp.
515-517); Intro. to Alan Cumyn, The Sojourn
Jan. 6 The Valour and the Horror: The Sojourn
Special Outing to the Canadian War Museum: Meet in the lobby at 5:45; See website for transit details.
Jan. 11 Masculinity on Trial: The Sojourn
Jan. 13 Between the Wars: The Great Depression & Socialist Documentary Poetry: Dorothy Livesay:
“Day and Night” (Vol. 2, 161-168) .
Jan. 18 WW II: Japanese-Canadian Internment: Muriel Kitigawa, “This is My Own” (Vol. 2, pp. 180187); Intro. to Joy Kogawa, Obasan
Jan. 20 Re-visionist History & Documentary Collage: Joy Kogawa, Obasan
Jan. 25 Literary Testimony: Trauma and the Body: Obasan
Jan. 27 Reconciling Canada? Obasan in the Redress Movement
Special Outing: GCTC, Sunday Jan. 30, 2 p.m. “Pay What You Can” Matinee of Strawberries in January
by Evelyne de la Cheneliere; Meet class in lobby of GCTC at 1:30.
Feb. 1 Imagining Nation as Community: “National Politics,” and “Cultural Nationalism”: (Vol. 2, pp.
220-241); The Massey Report; (Vol. II, pp. 204-211); George Grant, “Lament for a Nation” (268-271);
Earle Birney, “ Anglosaxon Street,” “Canada: Case History, 1945,” Can. Lit.” “UP HER CANADA,” ''i
accuse us” (pp. 112-114, 116, 120, 121-124); Dennis Lee “”Civil Elegies” “Cadence, Country, Silence”
(Vol. 2, 463-468, 470-476).
Feb. 3 Research Workshop at Library (Room TBA): Appropriate Secondary Sources and How to
Locate Them.
Feb. 8 Montreal Jewish Poets: A.M Klein, “Heirloom,” “A Modest Proposal” (Vol. 2, 149-151, 159-161);
Irving Layton, “Kein Lazarovitch” (Vol. 2, pp. 172-174, 178); Leonard Cohen, “The Genuis,” “The Only
Tourist,” “For E.J. P.,” “Suzanne”(Vol. 2, pp. 371-373, 375, 377, 378).
Feb.10 Prairie Poetry: Robert Kroetsch, “Stone Hammer Poem,” “On Being an Alberta Writer,”
“Disunity as Unity: A Canadian Strategy” (Vol. 2, pp. 313-319, 323-327, 327-331, 331-334).
Feb. 15 Quebecoise Theatre: Michel Tremblay, Les Belles Soeurs
Feb. 17 Les Belles Soeurs
Annotated Bibliography Due in Class.
Winter Break
Mar. 1 First Nations Theatre: T. Highway, The Rez Sisters
Mar. 3 The Rez Sisters
Mar. 8 Canadian Feminisms: Margaret Atwood, “The Female Body” (Vol. 2, pp. 460-463);
Daphne Marlatt, “prairie,” “hidden ground,” “musing with mothertongue” (Vol. 2, 488-492);Marlene
Nourbese Philip, “”Meditation on the Declension of Beauty,” “Discourse on the Logic of Language,” (Vol. 2,
pp. 589-596).
Mar. 10 Writing Workshop: Effective Integration of secondary research: (bring a sample body
paragraph for Essay three to class with a quotation from a secondary source from your Annotated
Bibliography assignment).
Mar. 15 “Multiculturalism Act”; “The Appropriation of Voice Debate and `Writing Thru Race'
Conference” (Vol. 2, pp. 544-45, pp. 531-533); Fred Wah, from Diamond Grill (Vol. 2, pp. 557-563).
Mar. 17 From the African Diaspora to Global Borders: Dionne Brand (Vol. 2, p-p. 629-637).
Mar. 22 Transnational Human Rights and the Canadian Novel: Ondaatje, Anil's Ghost
Mar. 24 Ondaatje
Mar. 29 Ondaatje
Mar. 31 Student-led Class: The Performed Word (rap, dub, spoken word, song lyrics)
Apr. 5 Exam Review and Study Tips Class (Sample questions provided only in this class).
Essay Three Due In Class
Basic Preparation: you are expected to: (1) practice active reading by marking off key passages and writing in
the margins of your books (with pencil); (2) attend all lectures; (3) complete the scheduled readings beforehand,
(4) arrive prepared to discuss what you have read, and (5) bring the relevant text(s) to class. It is important
that you take notes on lectures/discussions and note the passages we discuss in class. Some of these passages
are likely to appear on the exams.
Classroom Conduct: I’m sure I don't need to say that cell phones are to be turned off during class and that
laptops are to be used only for note-taking―not for playing solitaire, texting your friends, emailing or googling
. . . Right?
WebCT: This course will use Carleton’s WebCT course management software. Any course updates will be
announced on WebCT, so students are expected to check in regularly. In addition to finding announcements,
students can use WebCT to check their essay and exam grades and to download handouts and assignments.
Attendance Policy : Attendance is mandatory for this course. Students with more than three allowable
absences per term (other than on compassionate grounds of serious illness or family/personal matters) will be
docked two points per absence from your participation grade. I have built in this penalty policy for those
students who have not developed committed learning habits. This does not apply to the majority of you students
who are hard-working and committed. I do understand that many of you are juggling jobs, school,
relationships, and family commitments. I also understand that there are crunch times when assignments pile up
or you just need a personal day, so with this in mind budget your allowable absence days wisely. If you must
miss a class, please extend the courtesy of letting me know via email and let me know how you plan to make up
the work.
Exams and Airplane Ticket Bookings: The Fall exam period is from December 9-22, 2010 (including
Saturdays) and the Winter exam period if from April 7-21, 2011 (including Saturdays). Since the Registrar’s
Office does not set exam dates until well into each term, you must plan to be available throughout the entire
examination period. Do not purchase plane tickets with departure dates prior to December 22, 2010 or April 21,
2011 until you know your exam schedule. Exams will not be rescheduled for students who take on other
commitments during the exam period.
Course Blog: Reading & Events Responses
Course Blog: The course blog for ENGL 2802C is under construction…by you! Although we will use WebCT
for class announcements and confidential matters such as posting and retrieving grades, the course blog is
where you will find all the main links to literature resources for the course. The course blog is also a place on
the web where we can develop broader conversations about literature and culture than are possible within the
format and timeframe of the lectures. It will hopefully provide a fair means of participation for all students
regardless of shyness or talkativeness.
Where to find us: The course blog is located at:
How To Become a Blogger: This blog is semi-private, but will be readable by classmates (not searchable by
search engines and no-one can contribute or comment unless they are a registered wordpress user and their
email addresses are registered with me. Go to word press and register your user name (usually first name.last
name) and password with email address. Then send me an email with the email you registered on wordpress
and I will activate your author profile on our blog. Students who feel more comfortable using an author
psuedonym, may do so, but you must register your psuedonym and email address with me to get credit for your
Commenting on blog posts: You are invited to comment directly on blog posts by fellow students using
WordPress’s “comment” function. Obviously, the tone of all comments must be respectful. Wordpress will
again prompt you to register your email as a contributor. This way no-one outside our class can enter comment
on our blogs. Please feel free to speak to me with questions or concerns.
Blog Format: Contribute five entries per term of 300-350 words each to the course blog (4 on separate
authors from separate weeks of the the course and 1 on a Canadian literary or cultural event). Entries can have
an informal style, but they must still be focused, coherent, thoughtful, and well-written. Like any assignment,
they must also be carefully proofread for spelling and grammar errors before they are submitted. Sloppy entries
that have not been proofread will not receive credit.
The aim of this assignment is to provide you with an informal “talk back” space to respond to the writers of the
week, to lectures, or class discussions. Your commentaries may engage questions, issues, problems, and points
of personal interest in or disagreement with the weekly readings or classes. In other words, speak your mind,
give your gut response, but do it thoughtfully. It should be clear that you have completed your weekly reading
and taken time to think about it. Engage. React. Challenge. Optional Creative commentaries are most
welcome. Please offer your poems, water colours, drawings, collages, sculptures, and musical responses
(some of these may not be postable as blogs, so please submit them to me in the class they are due).
Canadian Literary and Cultural Responses: Go to a Canadian play at the GCTC, a literary reading by a
Canadian author, a film by a Canadian director, or a museum exhibit (check out our outing opportunities).
After you attend the event, please write a concise, personalized review. If you are writing on theatre, address
elements of set design, actor's strengths and weaknesses, costumes and props, as well as the overall impact of
the play. Also see Barnet, p. 68-74.
Submission Instructions: Bog Responses are due on the day we first discuss an author, unless it is a longer
work; then you may write on a topic or section of the book not yet discussed.
**You will post your blogs in alternating weeks. Group A and B will be assigned in the first full week of
classes. Group A will submit blogs, starting week two of the fall term, and Group B will submit blogs
starting week three. We will follow the same procedure for the winter term.
Marking : It is fairly easy to get a good mark on this assignment. If you do your reading and respond
thoughtfully, you are likely to get a B or more. I will assign a letter grade for your first blog along with brief
comments by the end of week four and post it on Web-CT. Fall and Winter term marks for this assignment will
also be posted on Web-CT.
A reminder about plagiarism: Just as in a formal paper or examination, your blog entries must be entirely
your own work and must obey standard rules of citation. Plagiarized entries automatically earn a grade of zero
for the assignment and no further entries will be accepted.
The first essay (2 pages) typed will focus on close literary analysis of one poem or a key passage from a work of
prose. The second essay (4 - 6 pages) will focus on extended close literary analysis of two poems or two –
three passages from a work of prose. The second term research essay (8 pages) will involve the same skills of
literary close analysis as the first two, but will also require some modest research in literary criticism and/or
historical context which we will prepare for in the writing workshops. Further assignment details for each essay
and the annotated bibliography will be posted on WebCT.
Format: All essays should be typed, double-spaced, with one inch margins at top, bottom, and sides. NO
TITLE PAGES OR PLASTIC BINDERS PLEASE. Use the MLA Handbook format for the first page heading.
Rough Drafts & Pre-writing Notes : All essays should be enclosed in a folder with brainstorming, prewriting notes and rough drafts. This is to ensure that your essay is the result of a writing process.
Writing Tutorial Service : If you know your writing needs extra work, do consider free tutoring with this
service. Contact the Writing Tutorial Service, 215 Paterson Hall, 520-6632.
Grading Criteria: Grades for term work will be based on insightfulness, originality, focus, organization of
ideas, clarity of expression, scholarly rigour, correct use of MLA style, spelling, and grammar. (See
“Understanding Your Essay Grade” on page 12 of the syllabus.)
Plagiarism: Plagiarism means passing off someone else’s words or ideas as your own or submitting the same
work in two different academic contexts (self-plagiarism). If you have been tempted to use someone else’s work
as your own in the past and if you find yourself presently tempted because of stress, anxiety about your own
ability, personal crisis, time crisis, or any other issues, I urge you to let me know about the extenuating
circumstances, so that we can work together to create the space and means for you to do work of the highest
integrity. Please ensure that all sources (including biographical and internet) you use in responses or essays are
properly credited. Grey areas of plagiarism sometimes arise from confusion about what counts as putting
things in your own words or paraphrase. This would include direct quotation or mostly direct quotation from a
source or sources you do document in your essay but do not indicate is direct quotation. If you change a word
or three or four in a critic’s sentence, this is not acceptable paraphrase. Put altered words in brackets and put
the whole sentence in quotes.
The consequences of plagiarism are severe and are issued by the Dean and the University Senate. In order to
avoid plagiarism, you must correctly and fairly attribute the sources of the ideas you pick up from books, the
internet, and other people. For additional information, consult the section on Instructional Offences in the
Undergraduate Calendar. For further guidelines, see the University of Toronto, How Not to Plagiarize
Handing In Assignments: Assignments are due in class on the dates indicated with a grace period. Essays may
be handed in without penalty until 8:00 a.m. the morning after the due date, via the English Department’s drop
box, located on the 18th floor of Dunton Tower. Please do not slip the assignment under my office door.
Emailed or faxed assignments are not acceptable and will not be marked. Keep a back-up copy of every
assignment you hand in as an insurance policy in the unlikely event that I misplace your essay. If one of your
assignments is lost, misplaced, or not received by the professor, you are responsible for having a backup copy
that can be submitted immediately upon request.
Late Assignment Policy Except in rare cases for which corroborating documentation can be provided (such as
a medical emergency or the death of an immediate family member), assignments handed in after the due date
will be penalized by loosing 2 points per day without comments. Essays handed in more than one week late
without prior notification may not be accepted.
Extensions: Requests for extension may be granted for difficult circumstances. Any such request must be made
in writing or in person to the professor (not the TA) no later than 48 hours prior to the due date of the
assignment. Requests for “retroactive” extensions (i.e. requests made on or after the due date of the essay) will
not be considered.
You may need special arrangements to meet your academic obligations during the term. For an accommodation
request the processes are as follows:
Pregnancy: Write your professor with any requests for academic accommodation during the first two weeks of
class, or as soon as possible after the need for accommodation is known to exist. For more details visit Equity
Religious obligations: Write your professor with any requests for academic accommodation during the first
two weeks of class, or as soon as possible after the need for accommodation is known to exist. For more details
visit the Equity Services website:
Students with disabilities: Those requiring academic accommodations in this course must register with the
Paul Menton Centre for Students with Disabilities (PMC) for a formal evaluation of disability-related needs.
Documented disabilities could include but are not limited to mobility/physical impairments, specific Learning
Disabilities (LD), psychiatric/psychological disabilities, sensory disabilities, Attention Deficit Hyperactivity
Disorder (ADHD), and chronic medical conditions. Registered PMC students are required to contact the PMC,
613-520-6608, every term to ensure that their professors receive a Letter of Accommodation, no later than two
weeks before the first assignment is due or the first in-class test/midterm requiring accommodations. If you only
require accommodations for your formally scheduled exam(s) in this course, please submit your request for
accommodations to PMC by the last official day to withdraw from classes in each term. For more details visit
the PMC website:
Excellent. The essay presents a clear, engaging
thesis and follows through with a well-developed
and well-supported argument. It shows good
understanding of the text(s) and is perceptive and
even original in its treatment, presenting more than
a restatement of the lecture/tutorial discussion.
The structure is logical and easy to follow, using
effective transitions. Paragraphs are internally
coherent; examples are well-integrated, relevant,
and thoughtfully analysed. The essay is
grammatically correct and free of mechanical
errors; sentences are balanced and varied in
interesting and appropriate ways; the language is
lucid, precise, and lively. The essay is formatted
properly and all sources are accurately cited.
Good. The essay presents a clear thesis and follows
through with a generally well-developed argument,
though some parts of the argument need further
clarification or support. It shows good
understanding of the text(s) but is not especially
insightful or original. The structure is logical but
not always perfectly controlled (for instance, some
transitions are weak or missing). Paragraphs are
mostly coherent; most examples are well-chosen
but discussion of them is not always sufficiently
detailed. The essay is grammatically correct and
mostly free of mechanical errors, but the prose is
not particularly elegant or engaging. The essay is
formatted properly and all sources are accurately
Adequate. The essay presents a thesis, but not a
clear or suitable one; it does not follow through
with a consistent, well-supported argument. It
shows basic understanding of the text(s) but
misses, distorts, or misunderstands some aspects.
The structure is loose in places, lacking transitions
or wandering off topic. Paragraphs sometimes lack
unity, and examples are not always relevant or
simply inserted without adequate discussion. The
essay has a number of grammatical and/or
mechanical problems, and the writing style is
uncertain and obscure in places. The essay is not
formatted properly and/or sources are not correctly
Poor. The essay does not present or argue
consistently for a suitable thesis. It shows some
substantial misunderstandings of the text(s); it
paraphrases or summarizes instead of analysing; its
examples are simply inserted without proper
connection to an argument and without discussion.
The essay lacks structure and moves from idea to
idea without any apparent logic. Paragraphs are not
unified. The essay has many grammatical and
mechanical errors and the style is generally faulty:
phrases or sentences are frequently unintelligible.
The essay is not formatted properly and/or sources
are not correctly cited. (Essays with all of these
problems will fail.)
Failure. The essay is completely off topic or has
no thesis and no argument; it simply paraphrases
the text(s), or misunderstands them; it uses no
appropriate evidence or fails to discuss its
examples; it is incoherent, unintelligible, or has no
discernible structure. It is stylistically and
mechanically a disaster. It is not formatted
correctly and/or sources are not properly cited. It
does not meet the minimum requirements for the
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